First things first: the hotel is located in Grasmere which is located in one of the most beautiful regions of the world and I say this having traveled a lot and being close on 50. I live in Switzerland and still was taken aback by the beauty of the countryside and by the village. I was lucky that, calling from my car and trying to use TripAdvisor's mobile application (which is definitely not easy to use when reception is poor), I was recommended to try this village by one B&B owner who had no rooms to let.
Oak Bank ranks first among B&B's so you think right away you must be on to a winner as when you enter the town you see what look like one beautiful inn and hotel after another. It was therefore with a bit of a surprise that I pulled up in front of the hotel and did not see the cute little place I was expecting. It is not an unattractive house and I recognise now that it is a 2 star hotel so not trying to be quite as flashy and gorgeous as some of it sneighbours and anyway you cannot judge a book by its cover.
I was delighted the hotel accepted dogs and had a room as much else was booked and I was quite tired. The lady that received me was charming and took care of my every need. The room was perfectly comfortable and for a two star and the price I paid perfectly correct.
I unfortunately arrived too late to enjoy the cuisine but had a hearty breakfast in the morning which was also correct and included in the price.
I had a lovely walk around the lake with my dog and will definitely come back to this region and speak widely about its charm to anyone who will listen.
About the hotel I would say this: wifi was free but did not work in the evening and only worked in the morning. Frustrating but even at home my wifi goes down sometimes. When i mentioned it in the morning I initially got a "well it usually is working response" but then the matter was looked into (shoudl have been right away as one of the reasons I chose the hotel was a wifi connection). What felt a little sad to me was the decor in the hotel. Obviously everyone has their taste (so excuse me for opining) but it felt tired and rather than adding a sense of charm and rendering a special character that I could take away with me as a fond memory, it left a tired impression of a place in need of some major love (TLC as the Americans say). As I see the hotel follows its feedback closely, I can only say, if I can make a constructive comment, that I would bring in a decorator and do everything to bring light and a bit of freshness into the hotel (as well as find a way to reduce the size of the reception desk or move it to provide less of a occupying presence in the main seating area). Anyway, just my five cents, but overall a good value for money. Not however the place I would take my wife for a romantic weekend solely because of the decor issues I raise above.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Nestled in Grasmere Village in the heart of the English Lake District, Oak Bank Hotel is perfectly placed to explore the surrounding lakes, fells and tarns. Oak Bank has two lounges both with plenty of comfy sofas and armchairs to relax in. The front lounge has a converted range and the bar lounge has a real log/coal fire. Breakfast and dinner are served in our Two AA Rosette awarded beautiful dining room and conservatory. ... more less
- Also Known As:
- Oak Bank Grasmere
- Oak Bank Hotel Grasmere