The modernisation of Cardiff is one thing of a piece in progress. The highway to Cardiff Bay is dotted with outdated industrial buildings, lots of which have lengthy been deserted or changed into one thing else. However the Millennium Stadium and “Physician Who impact” have performed an element in introducing many to the fun of the Welsh capital.

There’s a lot to take pleasure in on this metropolis, with extra to come back, and the voco St. David’s is a five-star base from which to discover all of it. 

Why keep right here

The voco St. David’s is a formidable constructing. It’s a little bit too trendy to “loom”, nevertheless it’s actually sufficiently big to have a substantial presence. Mainly, it appears to be like like somebody has lopped off a piece of a type of supersized cruise ships and connected it to the shore – and the result’s superb water views throughout the bay.

Outer rooms have beautiful balconies (the place you may, do you have to want, indulge all of your “king of the world!” Titanic fantasies) – plus a really trendy, spacious inside that once more brings to thoughts an unlimited liner. Add in a pool/spa, a bar, an expansive restaurant house (once more with water views) and a few very charming and pleasant workers and also you’ve received a contemporary five-star from which it’s very simple to discover this vibrant metropolis. 

The Admiral Restaurant & Bar

Consuming and ingesting

The resort’s bar and restaurant is The Admiral, a big however well-thought-out house that, within the institution’s phrases, is “eclectic”. As somebody who’s suffered a number of culinary disasters underneath that exact description, I’m happy to say that’s not the case right here.

The menu, for essentially the most half, is a crowd-pleasing checklist of classics that, the place doable, have a good time the Welsh larder, to not point out Welsh heritage. That’s actually the case with the cawl croquettes served in brown sauce, which could be the good Welsh bar snack: deep-fried, crispy and potato-y, with a wealthy filling of the traditional native stew. 

Elsewhere, there are references to sources and suppliers, from the Caerphilly cheese on the grilled asparagus to the pleasing Pembrokeshire crab truffles by way of assorted meat dishes from Cefn Mawr Farm. Much less profitable is a Tandoori cod burger which had both seen the within of the tandoor for too lengthy or been sitting underneath a warmth lamp for a lot of minutes earlier than my arrival. Regardless of the cause, it was much less “cod burger” and extra “coaster in a bun”. And, whereas this dish ought to by no means have made it out of the kitchen, kudos to the superb waiter who noticed my disappointment from a distance, agreed with my prognosis (laborious to not when the burger couldn’t even be lower with a knife), provided a number of options, raised the issue with the kitchen and took the merchandise off the invoice. 

Issues occur in busy kitchens, folks; it’s how they’re handled that units eating places aside and this was a textbook nice response. The accompanying fries are very good although, ditto the (completely cooked) broccoli with smoked garlic and shallots. And the Bara Brith bread and butter pudding is an absolute belter. Within the mornings, the house turns into the scene of an unlimited (and first rate) breakfast buffet. 

Relax at the spa and pool at voco St. David's in Cardiff

What to do

As talked about above, this resort is a superb spot from which to discover town of Cardiff, because it’s a brief drive – or, do you have to fancy it, a 30-minute (riverside) stroll – to the centre or the Principality Stadium. The rapid surroundings – the Cardiff Bay Wetlands Reserve – can also be a delightful house for a stroll. 

Additionally as talked about above, the voco St. David’s has a moderately high-quality spa with a decent-sized pool, and roomy sauna as properly. There’s additionally a variety of therapies obtainable, from magnificence therapies (utilizing ishga merchandise) to moderately extra intense massages, in addition to a not too long ago launched number of males’s therapies. I can completely advocate the ishga Sizzling Stone Therapeutic massage which was 50 minutes of bliss. Or, certainly, 20 minutes of aware bliss, and I’m assuming/trusting they did the additional half-hour whereas I used to be loud night breathing.

Aerial view of Cardiff Bay

Getting there

The resort is a comparatively simple drive from the M4, a 20-minute stroll (or brief taxi journey) from Cardiff Central Station, and 13 miles/25 minutes away from Cardiff Airport. And will you’ve got entry to a helicopter, the Cardiff Heliport is barely a ten-minute drive away… 

voco St. David’s Cardiff, Havannah Road, Cardiff CF10 5SD; stdavids.vocohotels.com