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“Saturday Night at the Gris” 4 of 5 stars
Review of Griswold Inn

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Griswold Inn
3.0 of 5 Bed and Breakfast   |   36 Main Street, Essex, CT 06426   |  
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Hotel amenities
Ranked #1 of 1 Essex B&B and Inns
Derby, CT
Senior Reviewer
7 reviews 7 reviews
7 hotel reviews
Reviews in 7 cities Reviews in 7 cities
8 helpful votes 8 helpful votes
“Saturday Night at the Gris”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed December 19, 2012

Had a nice stay at the Gris Saturday evening. The room had a period setting and was overlooking main street. Not drafty at all. We got the table as requested by the fireplace, dinner was good (not wow) but the server and the Christmas caroling were amazing. Note: We were at Table #61 and when I sat down I caught my suit pants on a nail or staple under the table causing a rip. Mentioned it to the server and then watched them sit someone at the table without even looking at it or fixing it after we were done. Stayed in the TapRoom with the band for the evening. Great time and great band. Would recommend and will return.

  • Stayed December 2012, 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
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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178 people have reviewed this hotel

Traveler rating
    82
    52
    22
    13
    9
See reviews for
21
102
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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4 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 (47)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • Italian first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Toronto, Canada
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
1 of 5 stars Reviewed November 27, 2012

Upon arrival we were informed the kitchen closes in 5 minutes ( it was 7:55PM on a Thursday night. The food was fantastic but the service was spotty. Wait staff our first night was clueless and their insight on the wine list was" I haven't tried any of them" and was less informative about the specials. Foe the room rate we would have expected a better view than the rusty air conditioning compressors , a cracked pedestal sink, a shower door that would not close, a shower floor in die need of retiling. Most disturbing was the useless screen obsessed oafs that lounged at reception absorbed in their phones or computer monitors. The continental breakfast was lack luster and more akin to a budget hotel with 6's or 8's in their brand. A dysfunctional toaster which frequently taxed the electrical power cord int the dinning area made it all but impossible to use by hotel guests, and a request for assistance was not even acknowledged by the large male host fixated on their hand held screen.

Room Tip: Room number 9 had a view to remember for all of the wrong reasons. Condition and location on the 3rd...
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  • Stayed November 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 1 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 1 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 2 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 1 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.
grisresponder, Owner at Griswold Inn, responded to this review, December 6, 2012
We are pleased that you enjoyed your culinary experience with us but are sincerely sorry that some other parts of your stay were not as positive.

As we investigated the dates of your stay we noted that was when our Front Desk Manager was out due to a medical emergency: this caused disruption in our scheduling and our normal Front Desk staffing was not available. While this may explain the circumstance, it is certainly not an excuse.

Timing is everything as they say. Though it is true that during quieter times – e.g. weeknights in November - the kitchen for our historic dining rooms closes at 8:00, we do have food service until 9 pm in our Wine Bar.

Many of the issues you enumerated, including those regarding your accommodation, have already been addressed. While it is always disturbing to hear such comments, fortunately we do not hear them often.

We do hope you will give us another try and discover that your recent experience is far from the “norm”.

Respectfully, The Paul Family
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Victoria Falls, Zimbabwe
Senior Contributor
41 reviews 41 reviews
23 hotel reviews
Reviews in 27 cities Reviews in 27 cities
33 helpful votes 33 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 11, 2012 via mobile

Charm, comfort, flawless service, delicious cuisine and absorbing local history are the order of the day in this elegant monument to New England history a short drive from New York City. It's a "must-do" for locals and visitors alike.

Stayed November 2012, traveled with friends
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South Dartmouth, Massachusetts
Senior Contributor
29 reviews 29 reviews
9 hotel reviews
Reviews in 16 cities Reviews in 16 cities
18 helpful votes 18 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed November 1, 2012

Don't stay in room 20, unless you like walking next to the fence by the kitchen exhaust and dumpsters to gain access to your room. The dingy bathroom, rugs, low wattage bulbs, sheets you can see through, grubby walls in need of paint sofa half reupholstered are just so depressing.
The public rooms are charming and they did a great job serving our large group (approx. 100). We did ask for a less expensive room but wow! We'll not stay there again anytime soon.

Room Tip: don't use room 20!
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  • Stayed October 2012, traveled on business
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 2 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
grisresponder, Owner at Griswold Inn, responded to this review, December 6, 2012
Beginning on a positive note, we are pleased you enjoyed your special event with us: many of the guests in attendance shared some very positive feedback. Regarding your room experience, we offer our sincere apology. Some of your observations are quite easily addressed and we have already done so. The majority of guest accommodations at the Inn have been renovated: Room 20 is not one of them. While some may consider its location “challenging” (which will be addressed in our next renovation), many of our regular guests request this accommodation because of its separate entrance, privacy, and spacious layout.
We offer a range of accommodations in both type and price point and are confident that some will be suitable to you. We do hope you will give the Inn another try!

Respectfully,
The Paul Family
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
new york
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 23, 2012

My husband and I spent a weekend in Conn going to antique shops and small towns and came across this Inn and decided to have lunch there. There was a waiting time of about 15 mins but welll worth the wait. We asked to be seated in the dining room area as the bar area was a litle too noisy for us. They had a Christmas Tree on the bar decorated in Halloween pumpkins.We order a Turkey club and home made potate chips and it was so tender and tasty. The place was great to walk through and see all the old pictures and items from the past. Make this a stop the next time you are in town.

  • Stayed October 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Stamford, Connecticut
Top Contributor
108 reviews 108 reviews
13 hotel reviews
Reviews in 31 cities Reviews in 31 cities
40 helpful votes 40 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 18, 2012

It was on the top restaurants in Essex list, it did not disappoint. Even if it was crowded, they accommodated us in the back room, or tap room, if anyone chose. It has a certain New England feel to it, wooden floorboards on the ceilings, and gigantic fireplace( that actually works) in each room. The decor is historic, and relevant to the region history of steamboat era. So your gaze does not go wanted there.
As far as food goes, it has a fairly reasonable price and of a decent quality. The staff is very polite, and quick to please.Recommend visiting, not sure if small kids would like it though.

  • Stayed October 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Huntsville, Alabama
Senior Contributor
46 reviews 46 reviews
12 hotel reviews
Reviews in 26 cities Reviews in 26 cities
17 helpful votes 17 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed October 17, 2012

First, Essex is a lovely town. Exactly as one would expect to find in New England. Griswold Inn is lovely. The inn complex is spread out over several buildings. The room was clean, bathroom modern, warm (it was chilly at night). I slept on a sofa bed and will say it was the most comfortable one I've ever slept on. However, some of the sofa cushions were torn open and the furniture in the main sitting room of our "cottage" was shabby.

Then there was the continental breakfast. Hmmm, I don't consider yogurt, toast, bagel or ceral with a bowl of mixed melons as a continental breakfast. No cheese, no sliced meats, not even bananas or apples. Extremely barren breakfast.

Then my group had reservations for dinner (19 people). Since we were all staying at the Inn as a group we were required to choose from a selection of three dinners: fish, chicken, pasta. We had clam chowder which the New England folks thought had a bit too much flour and a salad that just had olive oil poured over it. The fish was a bit over cooked but the sauce was delightful. I didn't have the chicken but understand that it was ok with a great sauce. I have no idea how the pasta was. The fish and chicken were served with tasteless julienne veggies and a lump of mashed potatoes. We were allowed only one type of dessert and we chose chocolate mousse which was thick and heavy. I'm not sure why we were not allowed to order what we wanted and had to stick to a "catered affair" type menu.

You would think that a restaurant could handle a group of 19 people without any problem.

But the biggest problem I had with the Inn was the music in the bar! It was loud and although they stopped the music at 11:00pm on Friday night and 12:00pm on Saturday I go to bed a bit earlier than that and couldn't get to sleep until after the music stopped and I was staying in a totally different building than that of the bar! Not fun.

So, although the room was nice I was truly disappointed in the restaurant and noise from the bar of the Inn.

  • Stayed October 2012, traveled with friends
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 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 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
grisresponder, Owner at Griswold Inn, responded to this review, December 6, 2012
We are sorry that certain aspects of your recent stay with us were a bit disappointing. Regarding the private function you attended…You may or may not be aware that your group leader arranged for very specific menu selections based on price. You are correct in stating that a restaurant should easily be able to handle a function of 19 people: we successfully host numerous groups of all sizes, many over 100 people. We receive excellent comments from virtually all of them, many of whom book with us again and again. Of course a disappointed guest is one too many!

We have shared your comments with appropriate staff to ensure that the quality of our food and service is maintained at a high level. And the space you referred to has been refreshed – new sofa and all!

As always, we hope you will stay with us again so we have the opportunity to make your visit “right”.

Respectfully,

The Paul Family
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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Additional Information about Griswold Inn

Address: 36 Main Street, Essex, CT 06426
Phone Number:
Location: United States > Connecticut > Essex
Amenities:
Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Suites Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 1 B&Bs / Inns in Essex
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:3 star — Griswold Inn 3*
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Located in the picturesque and historic village of Essex, Connecticut, the Griswold Inn is a destination experience. With 33 guest rooms, unique shopping, historic dining, a stunning nouvelle cuisine wine bar, and a taproom considered by some to be" the most handsome barroom in America", the 'Gris' offers visitors an authentic and spirited adventure. Come, make your own history here. The oldest continually operated inn in America. Fine Food, Spirits and Lodging....Since 1776! ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Griswold Hotel Essex

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