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“Great Conference Venue, Noisy Rooms, Poor Dining” 3 of 5 stars
Review of The St. John's Hotel

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The St. John's Hotel
4.0 of 5 Hotel   |   651 Warwick Road | near Birmingham, Solihull B91 1AT, England   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #20 of 21 hotels in Solihull
Cambridge, United Kingdom
Contributor
17 reviews 17 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 13 cities Reviews in 13 cities
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
“Great Conference Venue, Noisy Rooms, Poor Dining”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed June 19, 2013

I visited St. John's as a conference guest and had I only attended for the days I would have a very different perspective on the hotel. The hotel is well located, a short train ride from central Birmingham. The conference was very slick and as guests we had everything we could have needed - a large room set out cabaret style for everyone to gather and up to 20 breakout rooms, comfortable seating, constant supply of tea, coffee and cold drinks as well as fruit and biscuits, regular snacks, water on every table, provision of pens and paper, a good sound and projection system etc. The lunch buffet didn't have much of a vegetarian selection, but the meat options looked tasty, and the lack of savouries was almost made up for by an excellent selection of desserts.

Unfortunately, the rest of my stay was not as uniformly positive. The room was clean, tidy and neutrally decorated. Wifi was included in the price for the conference, and I found the reliable. There was a nice bathroom, with good towels and toiletries provided. The leisure facilities are a definite plus - good pool, gym, steam room and sauna with changing facilities.

However, my room faced the road, and I was woken up by the noise from traffic in the small hours on both nights of my stay. Added to this, the rooms were not very well soundproofed at all and so I was woken at 5am when the guest in the room next to mine took a shower. There was frequently noise from the corridor. Whilst I managed to keep my room at a reasonable temperature, by setting the air-con to 18 while I was out of the room and switching it off when I returned, several of my colleagues complained about the temperature of their rooms and the noise from the air conditioning. Many of the rooms lack natural light and can feel somewhat dingy.

The food was another big let down. Whilst there was a decent selection of food at breakfast, the hot food looked greasy and congealed. When we ordered tea and coffee, we were not provided with milk. The three course meal we were served on the evening of the first day of the conference was poor. The omnivores were served a prawn cocktail which comprised limp lettuce and a few prawns swimming in seafood sauce. The veggie option - French Onion Soup - was watery and tasteless. The main for vegetarians was a risotto, which was mushy and overcooked. Again, dessert was the highlight of the meal. Whilst there's a decent bar in the hotel, the prices were extortionate - £9 for a glass of wine or £4 for a pint of coke is unacceptable, particularly when the hotel is located just minutes away from some very nice pubs with perfectly reasonable prices. As you can imagine, after buying one drink, we took our custom elsewhere,

Whilst in many ways this is a nice hotel, it needs to perform more consistently, and for me the noisy rooms were its biggest let down. If you want a decent night's sleep, go elsewhere.

  • Stayed June 2013, traveled on business
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 2 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 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 Johns H, General Manager at The St. John's Hotel, responded to this review, June 21, 2013
Dear Madam,

Thank you for your recent stay at The St Johns Hotel and for taking the time to provide valuable feedback.
I apologise for the noise coming from the air-conditioning system which I will have our maintenance manager investigate as soon as possible. The settings however were regulated to a range which normally suits the temperatures within the hotel but can certainly be adjusted. We are planning to have a refurbishment this summer through which we hope to address the issues you have mentioned.
I appreciate your feedback regarding your meals as this certainly does not comply with our hotel food quality standards and I will be having a meeting with the Executive head chef to discuss the issues raised.
I would like to thank you once again for your feedback and do hope that we are able to welcome you back to The St Johns hotel in the near future.

Kind regards,

Darren McGhee
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Rating summary
  • Location
    4 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    3 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    3.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (90)
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English first
Coventry, United Kingdom
Senior Contributor
24 reviews 24 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 15 cities Reviews in 15 cities
15 helpful votes 15 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed June 18, 2013

Attended a dinner dance in May and stayed overnight, the bedroom was comfortable but nothing special and the bathroom needed a makeover or freshen up.
The food at the function was overcooked and decidedly average, generally not hot enough and as for the coffee – well that was cold and tasted disgusting.
Breakfast was a standard help yourself buffet style, fine for me as all I wanted was toast and coffee but did have to ask twice to get coffee and when I finally did it was lovely and hot! On a positive I have to say all the staff that I met were friendly and polite.

  • Stayed May 2013, traveled solo
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 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 Johns H, General Manager at The St. John's Hotel, responded to this review, February 16, 2014
Dear parkerb349,

Thank you for your feedback following your stay.

I regret that there were aspects of your stay which prevented your overall satisfaction. These are certainly matters which will be shared with the team and will be improved on for future purposes.

I value your comments as they aid in the progression of our business and the constant improvement of our offering. I do hope to welcome you back in the very near future for a more satisfying stay.

Yours sincerely,

Darren McGhee,
General Manager
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Herefordshire
Top Contributor
69 reviews 69 reviews
27 hotel reviews
Reviews in 38 cities Reviews in 38 cities
34 helpful votes 34 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed June 17, 2013

I had heard of this hotel in the past and it had a good reputation, but it was a disappointment to me. Check in was ok and there was a lift, but the room felt cramped and had very creaky floorboards. There was not much light coming in through the smallish window.
Upside, the shower was good and the water warm. The bed was comfortable enough and there was a hairdryer and trouser press. Breakfast was good, sufficient choices and efficient service.
Downside, the evening food was poor, dried up sauces where the food has been left under heat and doughy puddings. Particularly disappointing when food was pre-ordered so the kitchen knew how many they had to prepare and for when.
Similarly for lunch, there were lovely desserts but the sandwiches... not good..and wraps with just ham ???
Conference room facilities were fine, the coffee machines are good and there are lovely snacks at coffee time.

  • Stayed June 2013, traveled on business
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 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 Johns H, General Manager at The St. John's Hotel, responded to this review, June 21, 2013
Dear Sir/Madam,

Thank you for your recent stay at The St Johns hotel and for taking the time to provide feedback.

I am disappointed you did not enjoy certain elements of your meals which I will certainly be taking up with the relevant Heads of departments.
I also apologise for your room not meeting your expectations we have however planned a full refurbishment which is going ahead this summer.

I thank you once again for your valuable feedback and hope to welcome you back to The St Johns hotel soon.

Kind regards,

Darren McGhee
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Parma, Italy
Senior Contributor
33 reviews 33 reviews
22 hotel reviews
Reviews in 20 cities Reviews in 20 cities
18 helpful votes 18 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed June 14, 2013

On the plus side the hotel was well positioned for Birmingham airport, the staff were extremely friendly and helpful, there was a nice bar area where I had a simple but tasty meal and my room was clean and very comfy.
On the minus side, the bathroom in my room was clean but had seen better days, the breakfast did not offer much choice and distinctly average and the gym (which was one of the reasons I picked this hotel) was not very well equipped.
On the whole, I would not object to staying here again, but if I return to the area, I would probably look to see what else was available.

Stayed June 2013
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
St Johns H, General Manager at The St. John's Hotel, responded to this review, June 17, 2013
Dear Sir,

Thank you for your recent stay at The St Johns Hotel and for taking the time to provide feedback.

I am glad you found the hotel location convenient and were able to avail of the amenities we have on offer.
I have taken on board the issues you mentioned regarding your room, breakfast offering and the gym equipment. The hotel is currently undergoing room refurbishment which we hope to complete by the end of the summer, as well as this, we are looking to invest money into the gym focusing particularly on new equipment.
With regards to the breakfast buffet, I will be discussing this with the appropriate heads of departments.

I do hope to welcome you back to the St Johns Hotel soon.

Kind regards,
Darren McGhee
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
middle england
Top Contributor
160 reviews 160 reviews
92 hotel reviews
Reviews in 96 cities Reviews in 96 cities
55 helpful votes 55 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed June 13, 2013

Well located with some nice features but overall not somewhere I would like to stay again. Clean and tidy but a bit jaded. Plenty of parking, but at a price. Internet was slow and fitful; logging in unnecessarily complex. When will these places learn that connectivity i an essential not another opportunity to rip off customers!
he walls are thin and the floors and ceilings seem to fare equally poorly offering poor sound insulation.
My first room smelt of damp but staff willingly changed it and helped move my stuff as well.
The conference dinner was worse than may a school meal being overcooked. The prawn cocktail was all sauce and no prawns. Breakfast was not much better with cheap juices, breads and preserves.

  • Stayed June 2013, traveled on business
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 2 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 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 Johns H, General Manager at The St. John's Hotel, responded to this review, June 17, 2013
Dear Sir/ Madam,

Thank you for your recent stay at St Johns hotel and for the feedback you have provided.

I have read your comments and taken on board your feedback. It is unfortunate that you found the hotel WIFI slow but on busier conference days it is one of the challenges we face as it is offered as a free extra to all our guests.
With regards to the other issues you have mentioned, we are currently refurbishing several of our rooms this summer with a view to address all the concerns raised. I have also spoken to the head chef regarding the catering issues and will ensure this does not happen again.
I would like to thank you once again for your feedback.

Kind regards,

Darren McGhee
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Doncaster, United Kingdom
Senior Contributor
42 reviews 42 reviews
18 hotel reviews
Reviews in 22 cities Reviews in 22 cities
9 helpful votes 9 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed June 12, 2013

I have stayed at this hotel a few years ago and was pleased to be staying here again but what a difference!

The pluses - Ideal conference venue, which is what i was attending. Brilliantly organised and we wanted for nothing, thank you. Public places well cared for and nicely decorated with some lovely art work. My bedroom was quite small for a double and had seen better days, however, it was spotlessly clean.

The negatives - bed very uncomfortable, seen better days as had the pillows. Air con so loud that i could barely sleep but so hot in the room and unable to turn the thermostat below 18 degrees. There was a free standing fan in the room but this proved to noisy on top of the air con

The table setting for the conference dinner was beautiful and sadly let down badly by appalling food. Starters was some sort of prawn cocktail with the bottom of the glass filled with what looked like tomato juice, cheap tasteless prawns were topped by some sort of seafood sauce that must have come out of a jar. Main course - chicken on a bed of mushroom risotto - smallest piece of chicken in the world on a greasy, crusty at the edges risotto and some half cooked greasy veg. What a dissapointment! Dessert was a trio of cheesecakes - looked lovely and apparently tasted lovely but it was 9.30 by now and i'd had enough

In contrast, breakfast the following morning was a lovely buffet selection of what seemed to be good quality products

The drinks were very expensive - as noted before on this site but i mean, £9 for a glass of wine - really?

As i say, ideal venue for a conference but i wouldnt choose to stay here now if i had to pay for it myself and certainly wouldn't eat in the restaurant (unless they did an all day breakfast :)

  • Stayed June 2013, traveled on business
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 1 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 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 Johns H, General Manager at The St. John's Hotel, responded to this review, June 21, 2013
Dear Madam,

Thank you for your recent stay at the St Johns hotel and for taking the time provide us with helpful feedback.

I am disappointed you found the aircon and fan in your room noisy. The fans had been installed in preparation for the warm weather during that particular week as the thermostats are set to a temperature which is normally sufficient for the temperatures felt throughout the hotel. I will however ensure the maintenance manager investigates the cause of the noise.

I have taken on board your comments regarding your dinner as this is certainly not our hotel standard regarding quality of food and will be discussing this with our executive head chef.

Regarding the beverage prices in the bar, we are bound by a pricing structure which is set at our Head office in keeping with the four star rating of the hotel.

I would like to thank you for your positive comments and do hope you will re visit the St Johns hotel in the near future.

Kind regards,

Darren McGhee
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Swindon
Top Contributor
65 reviews 65 reviews
26 hotel reviews
Reviews in 29 cities Reviews in 29 cities
36 helpful votes 36 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed June 9, 2013

Got this great deal for £89 dinner,bed&breakfast&bottle of wine.
Reception was very nice and welcomed us and said our bottle of wine was in our room.
Room was fine, toiletries were all there and was clean.
Evening meal was excellent we had up to £27 each to have 3 courses ( very good ).
We were able to bring our bottle of wine down to the restaurant to drink.
Good nights sleep, bed a bit hard but really can't complain.
In the morning we decided to go down to breakfast about 9.15, well this is where the whole enjoyable stay ENDED, what a farce, it looked like a Plague of locusts had devoured the whole buffet breakfast and Nobody could be asked to replenish the food, No fruit Juice available but when it was, it was like drinking water, No milk, 5 bowls empty where fruit should of been, cooked breakfast was all over the place, it's nice to see food presented not thrown onto the hotplates, fried eggs chucked on top of each other.
Had to keep asking waitresses for everything, only 4 on duty.
Principle Hayley, please listen, you did so well but to spoil it all over breakfast, need to REVIEW.

Room Tip: Go down early to ensure you've got food for breakfast.
See more room tips
  • Stayed June 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 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
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
St Johns H, General Manager at The St. John's Hotel, responded to this review, June 12, 2013
Dear Sir,

Thank you very much for your feedback following your recent stay at The St Johns Hotel.

Please accept my sincere apologies for the frustration caused due to your disappointing breakfast experience. It is unfortunate that it impacted on your otherwise enjoyable stay at the St Johns Hotel.

I will be holding a management meeting to review your comments as this is not the standard we adhere to and an action plan will be put together to prevent this happening again.

I would like to thank you once again for your valuable feedback as it is through constructive criticism that I am able to monitor and maintain the standards within the hotel.

I hope that we can welcome you back to St Johns in the future.

Kindest regards,
Darren McGhee
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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Additional Information about The St. John's Hotel

Address: 651 Warwick Road | near Birmingham, Solihull B91 1AT, England
Location: United Kingdom > England > West Midlands > Solihull
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#5 Luxury Hotel in Solihull
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Hotel Class:4 star — The St. John's Hotel 4*
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Also Known As:
The St Johns Hotel

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