From the website and previous reviews, I had expected something really special - wow and out of the ordinary. Yes it has a spa bath and a sauna, which you would not expect in most self-catering accommodation but...the location is very remote - fine if you dont want to leave the lodge but involves a lot of driving if you do. The view was not quite as unspoilt as the photos suggested with the half-built roof of a new house poking up on the horizon in front of the lodge we were in and there are significantly nicer parts of the island to stay on. A lovely welcome of home baking was spolit by the fact that tea, coffee and sugar were indeed provided but dont expect milk! With the big windows, the first few days were stiflingly hot inside in the sunshine with only a noisy fan to cool the place and our lodge had no outdoor seating on which you could take in the view of the bay or just enjoy the sunshine. When the weather turned, even having the heaters up full took ages to heat the place due to the high ceilings. The lack of underfloor heating anywhere except the toilet meant that the main areas always felt cold underfoot and the lack of heating in the spa bathroom meant it was so cold in the last few days that it felt unpleasant and didnt get used except for obligatory showers. The furnishing were nice but not particluarly special - like a page from a Next brochure - and the biggest disappointment was the cleanliness. There are some terrific views of sunsets to be had from the lodges but they were spoiled by filthy windows. On closing one of the blinds in the bedroom, a spider carcass fell out - not good when you have arachnaphobia - and there were dead lies caught in the blind fabric. That made me look closer and the closer I looked, the more I noticed things. There are odd numbers of dishes where breakages have not been replaced, a distinct lack of instructions on how things work as we couldnt take in all the verbal instructions given as we arrived, and take the time to look in EVERY drawer and cupboard - there is no list of amenities and you will find all sorts of things in the cupboards that we didnt know were there - like the beach towels we found the night before we left! I booked a spa treatment but when the therapist arrived, she said that the blankets/towels for the spa room had been removed so we had to make do - this was remedied by a txt in time for the second lot of treatments a few days later. In places, the lodges are looking tired, and I think that the owners need to take stock of what they have achieved so far and not rest on their laurels. We both felt it was a resl shame that the lodge had generic prints on the walls (like you get from Next) rather than using the opportunity to showcase some of the amazing art we saw on the island or even photography of some of the stunning locations around. Similarly, more use of the excellent local toiletires made on the island would have been a nice touch. From what I read in advance and what I found, I think they have let standards slip a bit and it certainly wasnt the top notch, luxurious retreat I was hoping for - it was average given it has 5 stars from Visit Scotland. On the plus side - the therapist was very good, the wifi was fast enough for most purposes and someone had helpfully recorded a selection of movies and programmes on the SKY HD box. I am sure that if you are honeymooning, you wont be looking too closely at the surroundings. When you market yourself as top end, the devil is on the detail, and in the detail, this place failed.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Welcome to WhiteFalls Spa Lodges, an exclusive and idyllic retreat on best island in Europe as voted by Tripadvisor visitors. WhiteFalls is a luxurious haven in a truly inspirational island setting. With sumptuously sized rooms, exclusive spa in each lodge and access to some of Scotland's most stunning scenery, WhiteFalls Spa Lodges has all the ingredients for an unforgettable holiday. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Whitefalls Hotel Isle Of Lewis
- Whitefalls Spa Lodges Isle Of Lewis, Scotland