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East Sussex

The Mermaid Inn

Travelzoo Staff

Why We Love It

  • This property is in Rye, known for its cobbled lanes & half-timbered Tudor houses
  • This famous former smugglers' inn dates back to 1420 & was reportedly visited by Elizabeth I
  • The hotel has a 2-AA-Rosette restaurant that serves Anglo-French cuisine
  • Camber Castle, Henry VIII's 16th-century fort, & Rye Harbour Nature Reserve are both 5 minutes' drive away

93% (59 Member Ratings)

"The beautiful building "
Mar 30, 2017
esses, United Kingdom

Map & Directions

The hotel is a 5-minute walk from Rye railway station -- you can get a direct train from Ashford International railway station. Parking is free.

Rooms & Rates

Check Rates


The Mermaid Inn is a former smuggler's hideaway on a "storybook lovely" street (The Daily Telegraph) in the village of Rye. With its sloping cobbled lanes, skewed half-timbered Tudor houses and impressive views over Romney Marsh, Rye is one of the southeast's quaintest towns.

The town is "a little nugget of the past", according to Lonely Planet and is linked to lots of historic tales, many of which involve smugglers and ghosts.

The Mermaid Inn is around five minutes' drive from Camber Castle, a 16th-century fort built by Henry VIII, and Rye Harbour Nature Reserve -- an area with dunes, rivers, pits, grazing marshes, reed beds and farmland -- where you might spot rare species like the spangled button beetle. Winchelsea Beach, which is sandy when the tide is out and pebbly when the tide is in, is 10 minutes' drive away and Hastings is around 30 minutes' drive away.

This inn, which was reportedly visited by Queen Elizabeth I and more recently hosted the Queen Mother, dates back to 1420 and its cellars go back further -- to the 12th century. Many of the property's original architectural features remain, including stone fireplaces, an old priest hole, a secret stairway and latticed windows.

There's a 2-AA-Rosette restaurant that "has bags of historic charm and atmosphere", according to The AA Restaurant Guide 2017, and a bar that also serves food.

The Mermaid Inn has 31 unique rooms -- each one is named after a historical person linked to either the inn or the town of Rye. Some of the rooms have carved wooden beds and others feature oak panelling.

In the press:

  • "This famous smugglers' inn is steeped in history… the charming interior has many architectural features such as attractive stone work" -- The AA Hotel Guide 2017

  • "Mermaid Street is storybook lovely, with cobbles running steeply downhill and historic houses either side" -- The Daily Telegraph

  • "It retains many beautiful, traditional features, including an old priest hole and a secret stairway hidden behind a bookcase" – Frommer's

  • "This 600-year-old inn has bags of historic charm and atmosphere" -- The AA Restaurant Guide 2017



  • Bar
  • Newspaper / magazines
  • Extra beds / roll away beds
  • Restaurant
  • 100% smoke-free
  • No elevator / lift


  • 24-hour front desk
  • 24-hour room service
  • Laundry / dry cleaning

Room amenities

  • Central heating
  • Coffee / tea-making facilities
  • Iron and ironing board
  • Flatscreen TV


  • Complimentary Wi-Fi throughout


  • Hair-dryer
  • Luxury toiletries
  • Bathtub or shower


  • Complimentary parking


  • Accessible parking
  • Accessible path of travel

Please note: Some amenities may not be available in all rooms and some amenities or services incur an additional charge and are subject to change. Please check with the hotel directly.


Check-in: Standard check-in time: 2pm. Minimum age required to check in: 18.

Checkout: Standard checkout time: 12pm

Children and additional guests: Infant's cot/crib available on request, free of charge, for children aged 4 and under. This includes breakfast.
Extra bed available on request for older children and adults: £30 per person, per night for children aged 5-15; £60 for children and adults aged 16 and over. This includes breakfast.
Supplements are not included automatically in the total price and will be charged directly by the hotel.

Pets: Dogs are allowed on request, free of charge - and are allowed in the rooms, but not public areas.

Cancellation: Cancellation policy & booking conditions vary by 'rate plan'. These will be displayed on the payment page after you have searched for your dates and selected a rate.

Have a Question? Contact Travelzoo.

Customer service available Monday - Friday 9am - 3pm GMT + 8.

Rates may vary by date, are subject to availability and are not guaranteed until your purchase is complete.

The room rates listed are for double occupancy per room unless otherwise stated and exclude tax recovery charges and service fees.

It is the responsibility of the hotel chain and/or the individual property to ensure the accuracy of the photos displayed. Travelzoo is not responsible for any inaccuracies in the photos.

93% Positive
(59 Member Reviews)
Ratings & reviews reflect verified member feedback for The Mermaid Inn Limited t/a The Mermaid Inn over the past 15 months.
4.6 Ambiance
4.8 Location
4.2 Rooms
4.6 Quality of Service
4.2 Value for the Money
Show Reviews
Enjoyed Most
The beautiful building
Other Comments
It was so special
Megan Mar 30, 2017 esses, United Kingdom
Enjoyed Most
Superb. We absolutely loved it. From ever so helpful staff to bedrooms and delicious food.
Other Comments
Everything was just super.
Daniela Feb 26, 2017 london, United Kingdom
Enjoyed Most
The quirky unique building! Breakfast was fantastic - great choice!
Paula Feb 19, 2017 West Malling, United Kingdom
Enjoyed Most
Accommodation and dining both.
Other Comments
We will be going back.
Cameron Jan 31, 2017 Haywards Heath, United Kingdom
Enjoyed Most
The historical feel,the food and the staff
Other Comments
Dissapointed that the Travelzoo deal we had did not make clear that we only had dinner credit for one night and no mention was made of an upgraded room when other rooms were available,we had about the smallest in the hotel!!
john Jan 09, 2017 rochford, United Kingdom
Enjoyed Most
The atmosphere was amazing, the Giant's Fireplace bar was so cosy.
Other Comments
All the staff are so friendly, and nothing is too much trouble.
Gina Nov 28, 2016 Shepperton, United Kingdom
Enjoyed Most
The ambience
Other Comments
Staff are very efficient and friendly
Bee Nov 17, 2016 Brentwood, United Kingdom
Enjoyed Most
The hotel has a great deal of character in an olde world setting. Excellent staff and good food.
Other Comments
I have one very negative marketing issue to bring to your attention. The sales pitch as presented by your good selves stated a cost of £139 per room per night including a dinner allowance of £25.00 for food only per person. We have opted for this choice before and have chosen on some occasions to come in under the allowance or to spend more than the allowance and pay the difference. Alas, at the Mermaid the two course meal was £29.50 and the three course £38.50. Coffee was £4 per person extra. So it turned out to be a £156 experience rather than a £139. In financial parlance that is defined as material. It being larger than 10% margin of error
Ronald Nov 11, 2016 Petersfield, United Kingdom
Enjoyed Most
Incredible atmosphere, dripping with history. Great food, great staff.
Other Comments
Perfect for strolling round Rye.
Mark Nov 07, 2016 Woking, United Kingdom
Enjoyed Most
The location in the middle of Rye which was really pretty and picturesque.
Other Comments
The hotel staff were very very helpful. Great food and the hotel itself was extremely interesting and very old. A great weekend stay.
chris Oct 26, 2016 Okehampton, United Kingdom

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The Mermaid Inn