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Review: Holiday Inn Express Bodmin Victoria Junction

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This is my review of the Holiday Inn Express Bodmin Victoria Junction hotel in Cornwall.

We spent the Bank Holiday weekend in Cornwall, using the new British Airways flights from London Heathrow to Newquay.

We spent three nights at the impressive (and expensive) The Idle Rocks hotel in St Mawes. I highly recommend this place as long as you take one of the larger sea view rooms. I won’t do a full review because there is no miles and points angle, but feel free to email me if you have any questions about it.

Due to availability issues, we had to spend our first night elsewhere. Booking a major tourist hotel for just one night in Cornwall during August is tricky, and I settled on the Holiday Inn Express Bodmin Victoria Junction instead.

The hotel website is here.

I paid 17,500 IHG Rewards Club points per room (we needed two). I’ve forgotten the cash price but it was over £100, meaning that I got more than my target 0.4p per point valuation.

I wasn’t particularly looking forward to it …..

Let’s be frank. This is a hotel attached to a service station. Memories of this:

….. sprang to mind. My wife took it surprisingly well when I told her.

It actually turned out very well, and we all agreed that if we had spent the entire four days there it would have been fine.

Where is Holiday Inn Express Bodmin?

Let’s clear something up. Whilst the hotel IS next to a service station, this is NOT your traditional British motorway dump.

Cornwall Services on the A30 is pretty new, opening in 2014. This means it is, at least architecturally, a big step up from the average.

The Holiday Inn Express is brand new, opening in July 2020.

Regular HfP readers will know that I am very positive about Hampton by Hilton, Courtyard by Marriott and Holiday Inn Express. As long as you choose a new one, you will get a sound, reliable product for a good price.

Being brand new, the Holiday Inn Express Bodmin was in excellent condition. There was absolutely nothing to complain about. I’m not going to go into the details, because everyone who has ever stayed in a Hampton / Courtyard / Holiday Inn Express knows what they are getting:

  • a standard rectangular room, many with two beds or a bed and sofa bed
  • a shower but no bath
  • wall mounted toiletries
  • a good quality bed
  • a colourful decor scheme
  • tea and coffee facilities
  • free buffet breakfast
  • a restaurant serving standard mid market fare

Here’s a picture of the room, but it could be any room in any of the brands I named above:

The reason I wanted to give the hotel a plug is that it has a lot going for it in terms of location. It is a relatively short drive from Newquay Airport if you fly down and rent a car. More importantly, a huge number of Cornwall’s top villages, towns and attractions are within a modest drive.

St Ives and Land’s End are a bit too far. However, if your agenda is Newquay, Padstow, St Austell, the Roseland Peninsula, Truro, Falmouth, the Eden Project, the Lost Gardens of Heligan etc, it is surprisingly well placed.

Clearly waking up to a view of A30 (although you can’t hear a thing) is not the same as waking up in The Idle Rocks. You are paying a fraction of the cost, however, and can also use IHG Rewards Club points.

The hotel is a FAR better choice than some low quality bed and breakfast. You are getting a far bigger and comfier room, with access to a bar and restaurant, for probably less money.

You are also equally well placed for both the north and south coast, with good road access to both. Basing yourself in a coastal town will mean a lot of driving if you intend to do a lot of sightseeing across the north and south.

If all you want from your Cornish hotel is a cheap, comfy and clean base to come back to late in the evening to plan your outing for the next day, Holiday Inn Express Bodmin does the trick. I’d happily stay there again.

The hotel website is here if you want to find out more.

Comments (62)

  • Neil Preston says:

    Currently staying in a self catering cottage about 2 miles from this hotel and I have to agree with your comments about being a great location for visiting both the north and south coast, although I do think the whole Penzance, St Ives, Sennen Cove (Lands End if you must) are all reachable down the excellent A30. My only advice is to get up early when visiting during peak periods to ensure stress free access to parking.

  • ChrisW says:

    I’m a big fan of Hampton by Hilton too. The newish one at Luton Airport is excellent to catch one of those hideous 6am flights the next morning. It’s clean, spacious, modern, comfortable and excellent value.

    • Yuff says:

      How easy is it to get to the terminal from the hotel.
      What is the parking like there?

      • ChrisW says:

        Plenty of free parking directly outside. Theres a regular 5 min shuttle bus to the terminal or it’s about a 15/20 minute walk

        • Bagoly says:

          But have they sorted out the ‘bus getting stuck in the traffic on the actual road into the airport?

          • Lady London says:

            The funicular-like final leg of the rail link to the actual terminal is still being built so traffic snarls probably still a problem for a while to come.

            Good news about the shuttle fm the Hampton though. HIX /Accor etc. hotels that call themselves “Luton Airport” seem to be 15mins drive and admit there’s no public transport to the airport when I’ve called them! this had made me stop considering Luton.

            Though I’ve noticed a Hampton is often that bit more expensive than the HIX’s etc in the same place (like Ealing). Fair, but annoying 🙂

          • Michael Jennings says:

            There is a clump of six hotels together at Luton – a regular Holiday Inn and an Express, an Ibis Budget and a regular Ibis, a Premier Inn and a Courtyard by Marriott. In normal times they are about a 10-15 minute walk to the airport along a clear and good walking route. Plus there are shuttle buses. Not as good as right outside or connected to the terminal, but close enough that they can be walked if you don’t have too much luggage. This is important to me, because I do not like being at the mercy of someone else to get me to the airport in such circumstances. I don’t mind staying at one of these. Not perfect, but good enough, and you can usually find one of the six at a reasonable price. Whereas at Stansted there are two nice hotels right next to the terminal, but they are both usually quite expensive.

            The Luton Airport Hampton is much further away. I wouldn’t stay at that one.

      • Donna says:

        You can get a bus from the train station to the airport and they run every 10 minutes. You need to walk through the train station so you will need to buzz to be let in and go up and down the escalators to get to the other entrance where the bus stop is, however this is done promptly by staff. There is also parking at the hotel, but I would still get the bus.

  • Alex W says:

    Ahaaaa! I’m just off to get some tungsten tip screws!

  • Goldmember says:

    Did you remember your big plate Rob?

  • Rui N. says:

    Talking about Cornwall, besides Rob’s recommendations, what cities do you recommend to be the base for 3 nights? And what hotels (<£150/night) in those cities?
    I was going over there in Easter, and had booked an hotel in Penzance, but don't know if it was a good choice or not.

    • Nick says:

      There is precisely one – only one – city in Cornwall, which is Truro. So if you specifically want a city, it’ll have to be there.

    • pauldb says:

      In three days you are unlikely to explore very far, and there are no really bad areas. So either pick the best hotel , or work out where you want to visit and stay near there. Don’t feel obliged to be in reach of Lands End: it’s nothing special and the Roseland/Tintagel bits of coast are just as nice.
      If you want to visit the Eden Project, we stayed at the Cornwall Hotel & Spa in St Austell and it was a good choice with an indoor pool, in your price range.

      • Ken says:

        Lands end is absolutely garbage.
        Then again, I saw people with kids queuing to get into an amusement arcade / indoor kids ride place in Southport on Saturday.
        People desperate to spend money on any old shite.

        Dismaland.

    • KirtjE says:

      Ideal base to spend your first night to avoid the mad rush to your holiday destination of choice. The GM at the HIX Bodmin is very hospitable, and I’m sure you’d have a good stay (I speak from experience, as I stayed at his house for many weeks via Airbnb whilst I was working in Truro!)

  • Yvo says:

    We used points to stay at Stansted Hampton by Hilton this weekend.
    Can echo Robs comments, new hotel, friendly staff, good breakfast and walking distance to the terminal. 5th floor room with a great view of the rainy runway but couldn’t hear a thing. Would definitely stay again.

    • Lottie says:

      Agree, We stay there whenever we have an early flight. Also close enough to the parking to leave your overnight bag in the car instead of taking it on the plane if you are tight on hand luggage space.

  • Steve says:

    Echo the articles comments, have stayed at the HIX Bodmin, it’s a new, clean, crisp hotel and location is central to everything.

  • D.C. says:

    For Cornwall you need a base to travel from in easy reach of both North and South Coasts. Helston is a great base, to plan visits from. The Hotel range in Cornwall is either top end stuff price wise, (Idle Rocks etc) or Holiday Inn Ex. and Premier Inn. With the latter, you know what you are getting and if a base is all you are looking for, that is what I would be opting for.