A famous smuggler’s inn on Bodmin Moor which inspired a novel by Daphne du Maurier is on the market for £2 million.
The Jamaica Inn, which was once owned by the thriller-writer Alistair MacLean, has been owned for 40 years by John and Wendy Watts who now wish to retire.
Cornwall’s most famous 17-bedroom smuggling inn is being sold along with its sister hotel, the White Hart in Okehampton, by specialist property adviser Christie + Co.
Jamaica Inn was built in 1750 as a coaching inn called on by weary travellers using the turnpike between Launceston and Bodmin. It is said that smugglers used the inn to hide their contraband, and it is estimated that half of the brandy and a quarter of all tea being smuggled into the UK was landed along the Cornish and Devon coasts. It is also thought that the inn may have got its name because it did a considerable trade in rum.
It also contains a Smuggling Museum — probably the finest genuine collection of smuggling artifacts in the country.
Matthew Smith, director of Christie + Co in Exeter, said: “It’s rare when just one hotel of such local historical significance is brought to the market, but in Jamaica Inn and the White Hart Hotel we have two excellent opportunities with a renowned past, and which have traded well under the auspices of the current owners.
“The family which has owned Jamaica Inn since 1973, are now looking to retire, and given the history, the location and the trading records, we anticipate a great deal of interest, so would advise anyone who is interested to arrange a viewing as soon as possible.”
The freeholds to both hotels are for sale – Jamaica Inn at a guide price of £2 million and the White Hart Hotel at £900,000.