Please note: my stay at Mollie’s Motel & Diner Bristol was received free of charge, but this in no way impacted my opinion. I was not obliged to write a positive review, and the venue did not see this review before it was put up on the site.
Not far from The Mall at Cribbs Causeway, on a roundabout right next door to Miller & Carter, you’ll find Mollie’s Bristol. Featuring an American-style diner plus 123 bedrooms, it’s an intriguing place in a sea of industrial estates and chain hotels.
I had the opportunity to stay last week. Here’s what you need to know.
The motel lobby, tucked around the side of the building, looks inviting as soon as those sliding doors open up to reveal the interior. Check in with a member of the team (all of whom seemed like they were genuinely happy to be there), with the tablets attached to the counter or via an app which you can download to your phone. The one thing that would have been handy would have been to have had my room number written down – I’d forgotten it before I’d even left reception…
The reception area is open 24/7 – and it’s far more than just a motel reception. There’s a small shop selling snacks and Cowshed-branded toiletries. There’s free tea and coffee available whenever you want it. There are Mollie’s-branded umbrellas by the door should you need them to run to and from the door to your car or the diner. There are cocktails, beers and wines available to order. There are pre-bookable EV charging bays available for customers of both the diner and the motel to use, free-of-charge.
It’s an area that also doubles as a co-working space, with both informal and more formal seating areas as well as tables with built-in wireless charging points. It’s a beautifully-designed space – and there’s even an attractive courtyard garden area to enjoy during warmer weather.
“Budget-luxe” is how Mollie’s describe their ethos and style – and with the Soho House team behind the design of the place, it’s inevitable that it looks good.
While the reception/co-working area is quite eclectic, the design has been pared back for the bedrooms which are sleeker and more minimalist with very much a Scandi feel – right down to the smell of wood in the motel’s corridors. You’ll find grey walls and light oak panelling throughout: design that’s simplistic and unfussy, but certainly not what you’d expect from a standard budget hotel.
There are double, twin and bunk rooms available at Mollie’s Bristol – as well as interconnecting rooms for those travelling with family. Accessible rooms, complete with adapted showers, can be found on the ground floor. Check-in is from 3.30pm and check-out from 11am, giving you plenty of time to enjoy the facilities while you’re there.
My double room was a roll call of great design: a Hypnos mattress, a Conran armchair, a Dyson hairdryer and GHD wand, Cowshed toiletries…impressive indeed. While small, it’s clear that care had been taken to make the most of the space: the sink was outside of the bathroom to make space for a large cubicle with rainfall shower; the sliding bathroom door closed to reveal a good-sized full-length mirror; the area behind the wall-mounted hairdryer and straighteners revealed a small hanging space plus shelf for clothes.
While the bedside tables on each side of the bed were bizarrely low, it was good to see two plug sockets – plus a USB socket – above each. I don’t know if it was just me, but I couldn’t figure out how to just have a single bedside light on, which was slightly frustrating, but I liked the fact that the light switches were divided into zones (bathroom, main room, sink area) to focus the lighting.
There was a large TV on the wall opposite the bed, with the ability to order food and services as well as watch television. The ability to stream Netflix to the TV from my phone while still being able to use my phone at the same time was also a revelation. A table by the window included a tray with Canton Tea and Mollie’s branded coffee, plus milk, sugar and sweetener sachets. Hot and chilled water, though, must be fetched from a machine that you’ll find in the corridor on each floor
And the comfort? Pretty good. The air con was easy enough to set to the right temperature, the mattress felt soft when I first got in but was actually pretty supportive. The pillows were a little softer than I normally go for, but that’s all down to personal preference. I was also impressed with how quiet the room was, given the busy road right outside.
I’ve written in detail before about the Mollie’s Diner food offering: expect burgers, hot dogs, wings, rotisserie chicken, epic milkshakes and more. This visit was the first where I’ve had the chance to sample their breakfast menu, though, in their high-ceilinged diner complete with chrome details, cosy booths and diner-style touches like squeezy ketchup bottles sitting alongside more modern additions, like built-in wireless charging points.
Served from 7am, the Mollie’s breakfast menu includes a full English (and veggie alternative), eggs done various ways, plus lighter options like granola. There’s a “Mini Mollie’s” menu for kids (all options priced at £6.50), and the unlimited refills of filter coffee for £2.50 add to that American diner feel.
My Eggs Royale (£9) were beautiful: two muffin halves, each topped with a generous amount of smoked salmon, perfectly poached eggs and a decent quantity of creamy Hollandaise.
That “budget-luxe” description that Mollie’s give themselves? Completely accurate. Given the quality of the room amenities, the use of the co-working area and the fact that you can enjoy as much free tea and coffee as you like, the price point is surprisingly low.
Rooms at Mollie’s Bristol start from £70 on weekdays and £100 at weekends, excluding breakfast. Not bad for a friendly, well-designed and comfortable place that suits everyone from business travellers to families alike.