the celtic royal is in a seriously downbeat/derelict area of the town, but the hotel itself imposes as you approach. the facade and the reception area are grand, the staff friendly and efficient. the hotel is very clean. there is a smart restaurant and bar/bistro. there is a leisure centre.
then we went to our room.
we had a room that felt more like a single being used as a double, a bit poky. it had one medium sized window looking onto drab roofs. the furniture was cheap, tired and again drab, the curtains plasticky and flowery. there was a lace curtain. the en suite was ok, except we had to wrench the shower door open and kick it shut - this must have delighted our neighbours but we had no choice. the shower was fabulously powerful and the towels fluffy if a bit small. the toiletires again very cheap B&B style.
some of the rooms are in a newer section and some at the front may have more room and bigger windows/better light, but my heart did sink when i walked in to our room, especially as we had just stayed at the fantastically stylish and comfortable Castle Hotel in Conwy. how odd it felt to be in a 4 star hotel where the room is less inspiring than a cheap B&B! it just didn't fit. with a very little refurbishment of this type of room, the hotel would have been perfect for our needs.
another oddity that never happened to me before is that our room was serviced so late. twice we got back at 3.30, and the chambermaids had not been in. the 1st time i thought it was a genuine mistake and rang for towels/milk and we did the bed and tidied up ourselves. the next day we got back later and all was fine, the 3rd day again at 3.30 and nothing done. it meant we had our room serviced only ONCE in a stay of 4 nights! the breakfast is a very good tho' not a top class buffet, and be very careful not to go for breakfast between 7.30-8.30 as this is when all the coach parties are serviced before taking off for the day amd the only word is pandemonium.
the staff in the restaurant and throughout the hotel is plentiful and brilliantly helpful. all we asked for was always provided and provided immediately.
we ate twice in the restaurant and again were very impressed. the menu was varied enough, all was well cooked and presented and a 3 course dinner at £18.95 very reasonable indeed. there was a good choice of wines and we had a solid pinot grigio.
my husband particularly enjoyed his crab salad and we both had lamb with a pea and mint jus which was lovely. vegetables were well cooked and plentiful. on the second night i tried fish, fillet of sea bass if my memory serves me well, and it was perfectly cooked with good saute potatoes and vegetables. my husband enjoyed lemon tart one night and a chocolate dessert the next and i had lovely welsh cheeses with grapes and celery.
the only hiccup at dinner was the wine was not cold enough but we used ice cubes from our jug of iced water to cool it!
this was a very odd hotel experience indeed. there was nothing wrong with our stay essentially and some parts were very very good indeed. however the time warp B&B room just did not fit with the rest of the hotel and i did feel quite sad as otherwise this hotel - despite being coach party heaven & a bit too busy at times - could hit 4 and even 4 and a half stars. we would go again, but i would now ask if there are any better rooms available before booking again. i'd certainly recommend going out of season as in summer it must be so busy i wonder if a quiet comfortable stay could really be possible.
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- Also Known As:
- Celtic Royal Caernarfon
- Hotel Celtic Royal
- Celtic Royal Hotel Caernarfon, Wales