The Duke of Cornwall Hotel is a defining figure in Plymouth’s past and its present. A landmark hotel built in 1863, the Duke has endured at the heart of this maritime city for over a century and a half since. Surviving two World Wars and radical changes in its surrounding environment, the hotel stands as a strong and steadfast connection to days gone by. Its splendid Victorian gothic architecture drew admiration then – and makes even more of a statement in the contemporary cityscape.
The Duke of Cornwall Hotel is the perfect place to stay in Plymouth. The hotel’s 72 uniquely decorated bedrooms include single, double and twin rooms, so there’s an option to suit every need. Plus, the hotel’s Superior and Luxury ranges – which include sensational four-poster suites – offer extra space and features for special occasions or indulgent treats. Whether you’re visiting Plymouth for business or pleasure, or attending a special event, a night at the Duke is always an experience to enjoy.
When you walk through the Duke’s revolving doors, you step back in time. Dating from 1863, the Duke of Cornwall offers a wealth of historic features. Poet Sir John Betjeman described it as “one of the nation’s finest examples of Victorian architecture” – and it’s not hard to see why. Its imposing gothic building style, grand rooms and hallways, stunning Grade II listed staircase, and ornate interior details, make the hotel a gem in Plymouth’s crown. Thanks to the loving preservation and refurbishment of the Duke over recent years, this splendour can still be enjoyed today.
The Duke of Cornwall Hotel was created to serve a growing demand for luxury accommodation in the golden age of steam. It welcomed a busy flow of passengers arriving by rail at the adjacent Millbay station and from ocean liners at Millbay Docks. The Duke, then Plymouth’s tallest building, became a beacon of sophistication in the city and has attracted an array of illustrious guests ever since.
One notable resident was the celebrated explorer Ernest Shackleton. He and his party stayed at the Duke on their last night before setting out on their infamous Antarctic expedition. The hotel has also welcomed legendary showbiz names through its doors, including Charlie Chaplin, Laurel and Hardy, Anne Ziegler and Webster Booth. Notable figures from the world of politics, such as Alan Clarke and Dame Janet Fookes, have been among the guests here too.