The Channel Islands have always been one of those destinations that's intrigued us but it's never really been the first place on our minds when planning a holiday. When we got invited to check out The Club Hotel & Spa and their Michelin star restaurant, Bohemia, we jumped at the chance.
Jersey is located just off the coast of Normandy but it is a Crown Dependency. Long story short, its not part of the UK but we look after it. Therefore, you’ve got an island run with the efficiency of a British town with the charm of a French village. They speak French, English and their own form of the Normandic language. You’ve got stunning beaches and nature, world class restaurants and quaint farms. It makes for the perfect alternative to a weekend in the country.
Back to The Club, the swank boutique hotel is everything you’d want in a weekend get away. Plush rooms, a super relaxing spa, plussss a Michelin starred restaurant. Bohemia really is the centrepiece of the restaurant. Steve Smith, the Head Chef, put together an impressive tasting menu centred around local flavours. There is nothing worse than a fine dining restaurant hiding behind frills and cheap tricks but Smith keeps it simple but sophisticated. You can always tell what’s to come from a meal based on the bread and butter they serve and Bohemia are probably the best. The fresh baked bread is served with, hands down, the best butter we’ve had. Sure, the local Jersey butter they serve is top notch but when it’s blended with seaweed you get an unbelievable caviar-like flavour that keeps you digging for more. Our favourite dish from the night was the Fois Gras Cream with duck salad and kumquat. Perfectly executed and incredibly delicious.
Next up, our little spa session was awful. Jokes, it was perfection. The Mud Rasul Experience is a luxurious way to lock yourself in a hot room with your mate. The exotically decorated steam room has two seats facing each other. After you get the silky mud all over you the room sets for 30 minutes of some heavy steam. Just as you’ve battled the heat and acclimatised you reach the end and get a blast of clod water to bring you back to earth. You leave the room totally and utterly cleansed and refreshed.
Aside from relaxing near the coast or walking through the villages you have an surprisingly large amount of activities to choose from on the island. Two of our favourites were the Blow Karts and the speed boat to remote Ecrehous Island. Blow Kart is what it sounds like. Go karts rigged up to wind surfing sails. Catch it on a windy day and you can crush down the super flat beach without the diesel engine blaring behind your ears.
The trip to Ecrehous island was unreal. The tiny rock off the coast of Jersey is home to about 5 homes that tend to get washed away occasionally. The speed boats take you up to the island along with a couple stunning sand bars. It’s a place you have to see to understand but it was wonderfully surreal. When the tide is down, Ecrehous is a rugged rocky patch in the middle of the sea with each house sitting on what looks like odd platforms. When the tide comes up, the homes are totally surrounded by water creating the most alien of enviornments. Life there is almost impossible but you can rent homes out for weekends at a time. Ecrehous oddly sums up Jersey for us in the end. It serves as an example of the adventure that Jersey serves up all there for a weekend trip from London.