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“Great hotel; staff were very helpful.” 4 of 5 stars
Review of Hotel du Vin & Bistro

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Hotel du Vin & Bistro
4.0 of 5 Hotel   |   14 Southgate St., Winchester SO23 9EF, England   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #6 of 13 Hotels in Winchester
Zurich, Switzerland
Top Contributor
105 reviews 105 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 19 cities Reviews in 19 cities
62 helpful votes 62 helpful votes
“Great hotel; staff were very helpful.”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed February 7, 2014

My experience of the hotel was great. I came here for a conference, and spent two nights here. I was upgraded to a superior room which was large and comfortable. The bed in particular was a pleasure to sleep on. The staff were consistently helpful and professional throughout the time I spent there, and let me leave my bags there until quite late on the day I had checked out. The barmen were also friendly and made a mean martini, and even though they did make me and my friend a 'Zombie' at the end of the night, which may have been a mistake, it was a glorious mistake at the time. There is a

  • Stayed January 2014, traveled solo
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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313 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4 of 5 stars
  • Value
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (65)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • Any
English first
Salisbury, United Kingdom
Contributor
14 reviews 14 reviews
7 hotel reviews
Reviews in 9 cities Reviews in 9 cities
20 helpful votes 20 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed January 27, 2014

My wife and I booked a 1 night stay at the Hotel du Vin in Winchester in order to celebrate her birthday. Everything (room booking and dinner reservation) was booked online and whilst we received confirmation of the room booking, our dinner reservation was not mentioned. Thinking it might be a good idea to confirm the dinner reservation, I telephoned the hotel at about 1130 on the Friday morning. I had no success getting anyone to answer the telephone in the bistro or when I selected the "existing booking" option. I tried several times without success and once I was simply cut off. Eventually, I got through to the front desk and confirmed everything. Not a good start.

We had booked a "Superior Double" on the Dinner, Bed & Breakfast deal at a cost of over £200 for 1 night. We were shown to our room and it was, I have to admit, a lovely-looking room. Relaxing in the room before heading out for a drink when my wife noticed a stain on the duvet (white duvet with a white duvet cover - the stain showed through very clearly). Dark in colour, it was probably red wine, but could quite easily have been blood. A closer look at the duvet revealed a number of what looked like small pieces of paper inside the duvet cover. We pulled back the cover and reached in to retrieve the nearest piece of 'paper' - it soon became clear what had been done. The duvet was covered in stains and someone had come up with the brilliant idea and getting some white adhesive labels (address labels?) and sticking them over the stains!! Needless to say we phoned reception and asked that the duvet be changed whilst we were out (which it was, but with the duvet cover on inside out!)

We headed into dinner and were promptly handed our menus and the wine list – everything looked fantastic. When we were brought some water, I happened to mention to the waiter that we were on the DB&B deal. He hastily brought us the Plats du Jour menu and another waiter had to explain that we could still order from the A la carte menu, but that there would only be a £20 ’allocation’ towards the cost of the food. There are no examples of the Plats du Jour menu on the website (I realise they change regularly…), but I am certain that if there was, the take-up on the DB&B deal would fall away dramatically – the gulf between the two menus is huge and, given the choice, one would opt for the A la carte menu every single time. Interestingly, we stayed at Hotel TerraVina (in the New Forest) just before Christmas and their Dinner Bed & Breakfast offer enabled us to choose absolutely anything from the Al la carte menu, which, quite frankly, is what you expect. Given that we knew that the night was going to cost about £250 (with wine), we stuck with the Plats du Jour menu; the food was completely unremarkable. On the upside, the bistro had a good atmosphere and looked ‘just right’.

We went back to our room after dinner and my wife wanted to wash her make-up off before bed. She ran the hot tap, but when the water was still running cold 5 minutes later, she boiled the kettle and filled the basin instead. The following morning the same thing happened with the shower – I left the bathroom and went to watch the news whilst I was waiting for the water to warm up!

The tipping point probably came at breakfast the next morning when we were told that our booking only entitled us to a continental breakfast and did not cover the option of a cooked breakfast. I honestly didn’t believe what I was being told, so I went out to reception and asked the receptionist – she confirmed that the information was correct. The Hotel du Vin in Winchester, surely one of the most expensive hotels in town, does not offer its guests a cooked breakfast when they book a room on a Dinner, Bed & Breakfast basis? Really?

My wife, who had made the booking herself, was, understandably, highly upset by this point. Not long after we checked out and, thoroughly deflated, headed home. Our trip to Winchester, which was meant to be a celebration, will be remembered for stained duvets, disappointing food, a lack of hot water and the relentless pressure on guests to spend more – they want paying guests to book the Dinner Bed & Breakfast deal, before then ordering from the A la carte menu at dinner and paying extra for a cooked breakfast. I last stayed at the Hotel du Vin in Winchester many years ago and it’s disappointing to see how much standards have slipped since then. From start to finish, a hugely dispiriting (and occasionally unhygienic) experience...

  • Stayed January 2014, traveled as a couple
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 11
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Bristol
Contributor
11 reviews 11 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 8 cities Reviews in 8 cities
12 helpful votes 12 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed January 4, 2014

This is a difficult review to write. HdV Winchester has so many exceptional attributes, but, like in many modern hotels, management seems to have ignored some of the basics.

We arrived a couple days before New Year's Eve--the second half of our Winter holiday, 10 days in total. Consequently, we had a significant amount of luggage. We were shown to our Superior room and, although it seemed a bit small, it was charming--spotless, thoughtfully decorated, and welcoming. It was only when I opened the wardrobe door, we realised there were going to be problems. The hanging space available for clothing was no more than 18 inches wide-Just about enough for our winter coats. At least four times this much space was dedicated to a fridge, a safe, and a compartment for ironing board and iron. Admittedly, except for the latter (which could have been available through reception) these items were welcome, but the fridge was perhaps twice as big as it needed to be and probably could have been positioned elsewhere. As we were to discover throughout our stay, the staff was extremely responsive and within minutes, Josh had come up with a couple rickety rolling racks for the rest of our clothing (I surmised they've had this problem before). While this solved the storage problem, the instant transformation from cozy bedroom to M & S Clearance section did nothing for our mood or the charm we had felt upon arrival.

As we were going out for dinner, my wife announced she was going to tidy her makeup, then almost immediately added she was having great difficulty seeing herself in the mirror. This perhaps had something to do with the fact there was no overhead lighting in the room or the bath and the table lamps dotted around were, as always these days, fitted with anemic low energy bulbs, The result was not a million miles away from operating in a cave. Again, Josh came up with another lamp and, although this did little to dispel the gloom, the effort was appreciated.

That's the bad news--on the positive side, the GM, Grant and his staff were absolutely superb throughout our visit. We never saw a face that wasn't smiling and absolutely nothing was too much trouble. We had booked the New Year's Eve gala dinner and found it to be excellent with a delicious menu, attentive staff and a talented band for entertainment after dinner and into the small hours.

I would be remiss in this review if I didn't call attention to some of the people who made our visit a success in spite of the logistical challenges: The two Joshes in the bar, the serving staff, particularly at breakfast, and the talented team at reception all deserve recognition for keeping the standard and the mood of the hotel at a consistently high level. It was these people who bumped my rating up from average to very good. They were delightful.

We may visit Winchester again at some point and would consider returning to the HdV, but only if we could be assured of adequate storage facilities and a room with sufficient lighting to see what's going on (and each other). We don't think this is too much to ask.

  • Stayed December 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Birmingham, United Kingdom
Senior Reviewer
6 reviews 6 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed January 3, 2014 via mobile

Had a lovely stay but did have to upgrade as the standard room was tiny with a tiny bed. But the superior room is fab and with a great huge bath in the middle of the room and a 50" tv ! Dream cone true. Staff have been brilliant. My only complaint is due to the building being old I could hear next door walking up and down so not a great nights sleep. I do think a bottle of water should be included in the rate.

  • Stayed January 2014
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Salisbury, United Kingdom
Reviewer
5 reviews 5 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed December 30, 2013

We've stayed here several times before and always had a lovely stay. Previously we've stayed in the cottages, but this time we stayed in one of the rooms within the hotel for 2 nights.

The room was quite small but it was nicely decorated and comfortable. The hotel is always happy to accommodate requests in advance for things like fresh flowers, champagne, strawberries etc to be in the room upon arrival.

The bathroom was definitely a positive feature. We had a standalone bath and a walk-in monsoon shower, which was very nice.

The one downside to this stay was that whilst we were out during the day the cleaners went into the room and took my dress protector which I had left on a chair. I was very upset about this and complained to the manager, who apologised and offered to re-imburse me for the cost of a new one, if I sent them the receipt. I was satisfied with the way the manager dealt with the issue, I do feel upset though that a piece of my property was taken from the room.

Regardless of this, I would still stay in the hotel again.

  • Stayed April 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Epping, United Kingdom
Top Contributor
74 reviews 74 reviews
22 hotel reviews
Reviews in 32 cities Reviews in 32 cities
43 helpful votes 43 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 28, 2013

We've used this Winchester branch of this excellent chain many times as a stopover location for our drives from Essex to The Southwest. We find the rooms are always quality appointed, the service professional and the restaurant has a great ambience and serves decent steak plus excellent wine selection.

This time we took advantage of a one night 3 course dinner + bed offer for £170 all in including half bottle champagne on arrival - excellent value

Room Tip: The rooms in the main house seem better
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  • Stayed December 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
St. Albans, United Kingdom
Top Contributor
74 reviews 74 reviews
29 hotel reviews
Reviews in 42 cities Reviews in 42 cities
60 helpful votes 60 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed December 7, 2013

I stayed here with a girlfriend for one night as a base to visit the Winchester Christmas Market and it turned out to be an excellent choice.
The hotel is perfectly situated very close to the centre of town and cathedral.
We we're warmly welcomed and check in was quick and efficient. Although our room wasn't ready by the time we had relaxed in the bar it had been prepared and our bags were waiting for us on arrival. The room was nicely decorated with ample amenities and thankfully fresh milk in the mini bar and a proper coffee maker.
The bed was crisp and comfy and the bathroom large with a huge shower head over the bath and nice toiletries and bath robes. We had a room overlooking the courtyard which had a lovely view and was very quiet.
We ate in the bistro in the evening and I had a goats cheese and beetroot tart which was a little dry but tasty, and then beautifully soft ravioli with a pumpkin and Parmesan filling. It was some of the best pasta I have had and melted in the mouth. I would also recommend the house champagne which was crisp and light and the mulled wine which was superb.
All the staff were friendly and very professional.
I would recommend this as a perfect place to stay in Winchester and a vast improvement on my previous experience at one of Hotel du Vins sister establishments.

Room Tip: Rooms overlooking the courtyard have a nice view and are very quiet although in summer months guests...
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  • Stayed December 2013, traveled with friends
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Hotel du Vin & Bistro

Address: 14 Southgate St., Winchester SO23 9EF, England
Location: United Kingdom > England > Hampshire > Winchester
Amenities:
Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#6 Romantic Hotel in Winchester
#6 Luxury Hotel in Winchester
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$
Hotel Class:4 star — Hotel du Vin & Bistro 4*
Number of rooms: 24
Reservation Options:
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Also Known As:
Hotel Du Vin And Bistro
Hotel Du Vin Winchester

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