The Mercure Southampton Dolphin Hotel is in the city centre of Southampton’s old town where it has stood for over 600 years, serving throughout this period as a welcome place to rest for weary travellers. Today the building is classed as a Grade II Listed Building.
This hotel was first established in 1550 and has a fascinating history. Shakespeare and company performed plays in the inn yard, Thomas Hardy refers to it in Trumpet Major and Jane Austen danced here at Assembly Balls at two stages in her life (arranged by Florence Nightingale’s mother). The hotel was rebuilt in 1775 to accommodate spa visitors and it supposedly has the biggest bay windows in England; Thackeray sat in one of them to write Pendennis.