Rolling hills shoot north towards Dorchester, while the view east follows Chesil Beach, a mere 20 miles round to Portland Bill. The Boarding House’s natural beauty comes courtesy of a recent facelift, proving conclusively that cosmetic surgery works. Outside, there’s a dining terrace overlooking the sea, then paths that drop down to the beach. Inside, walls of glass flood big rooms with seaside light. There’s a bar for cocktails and afternoon tea, a library with books and games for rainy days, then a restaurant for delicious food: perhaps cheese soufflé, whole lemon sole and chocolate and hazelnut delice. Upstairs bedrooms all have sea views and mix period furniture (some from HMS Windsor) with 21st-century design: beautiful beds, Zoffany colours, rugs on wood floors, cushioned window seats. Bathrooms have white robes and vintage tiles, then a big shower, a claw-foot bath, or both. The coastal path passes directly outside, so bring your boots. Brilliant.