Coronavirus (COVID-19) Latest Information

During these uncertain times caused by the rapid spread of the coronavirus, and on behalf of The Bella Team, I want to reassure guests and customers of our firm commitment to you.

We know that all companies and markets have been affected by the current situation. Travel and supplies to and from the Islands are now also being effected.

The health and safety of all guest and staff is most paramount.

The hotel has been closed for the winter season, and we have liaised with all our staff both overseas and locally, and for their safety and that of our customers we have decided to review our re-opening for the summer season:

We will now re-open May the 1st 2020 and not April 1st as previously planned.  We will continue to review and post updates on our website and social media accounts as they arise.

All existing reservations and bookings for April will be contacted ASAP to make alternative arrangements. 

All future hotel and restaurant bookings, and general queries should be directed through:  [email protected] / 01481 238764

Phil Collinson, General Manager

La Longue Veille

The Longue Veille is a historic celebration entirely unique to Guernsey that traditionally took place on December 23rd, and gives islanders and visitors a welcome excuse to begin their festive celebrations a day early.

The origins of La Longue Veille date back to 17th Century, when an Act of Parliament allowed the export of wool from mainland Britain to the Bailiwick to service Guernsey’s woolen industry. Many islanders were engaged in the manufacture of woolen stockings, frock jackets and jumpers, and neighbours would often gather in each other’s homes to work together in the production of garments in a social setting. These industrious assemblies were known as “veilles” or “veillies”, and the wares produced were taken into St Peter Port on a Saturday to be sold at market, with a special market held for them on the day before Christmas, known locally as “surveille”. The evening before, on the night of December 23rd, goods were packed ready to be taken to market and, it being the last market of the year, the opportunity was taken to celebrate the hard work of the last twelve months.

“Masters were in the habit of regaling their servants—merchants treated those with whom they had dealings—and neighbours clubbed together to supply the means of spending a joyous night.”
Edgar MacCulloch, Guernsey Folk Lore

During this period in Guernsey’s history the church took a somber view of any celebrative gathering connected to religious festivals, in an attempt to remove the influence of ancient pagan festivals on their congregation. With no link to a festival, be it Christian or pagan, there could be little objection to this celebration and consequently La Longue Veille became an opportunity for islanders to openly celebrate the festive season without incurring the displeasure of the local clergy. La Longue Veille continued to be a traditional gathering of family, friends and neighbours on the evening of December 23rd long after the importance of the island’s woolen industry and regular veilles had declined. Traditionally, spiced and sweetened mulled wine (known as “vin brûlé) is served in coffee cups, along with cheese and a Guernsey biscuit or galette. If you need an excuse to join us at the Bella’s bar for a mug or two of mulled wine and a cheese board on the night of Friday December 23rd this year, then La Longue Veille is it. We look forward to welcoming you.

Written by:

Bella Luce