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“5 stars are not enough” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Woodlands Country House Hotel

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Woodlands Country House Hotel
4.0 of 5 Hotel   |   Hill Lane, Brent Knoll TA9 4DF, England   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #1 of 3 Hotels in Brent Knoll
1 review
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
“5 stars are not enough”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 27, 2013

We have just returned from an evening at woodlands , having had their 7 course taster menu . The food ,service and value was faultless and look forward to returning as soon as possible .Would recommend without hesitation.

Stayed September 2013, traveled as a couple
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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226 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (45)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • German first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Boston, MA
Senior Contributor
27 reviews 27 reviews
16 hotel reviews
Reviews in 23 cities Reviews in 23 cities
28 helpful votes 28 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 23, 2013

We were on a golf trek visiting links courses in the southwest part of England. This house, about a two hour drive from London, was recommended and it was excellent.

The young owners, Sarah and Paul McLean, are enthusiastic and eager to meet virtually any request. One of our group had forgotten some important meds for the trip and the McLeans did everything they could to help solve the problem.

The rooms are neat and clean. There appeared to be about a dozen rooms. There is a small, intimate bar in the house and the dining room, although spare, worked just fine.

Brent Knoll is in a very historic area (well, all of England is a very historic area) so there are plenty of interesting sights to see if golf isn't on the docket.

  • Stayed September 2013, traveled with friends
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 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.
Senior Reviewer
10 reviews 10 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
8 helpful votes 8 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed September 10, 2013

Our first impressions of this hotel were very good. Perched on top of a hill in the middle of countryside, it was a lovely setting to arrive at. We were shown to our room with some formality, which was beautifully decorated, and we were pointed towards complimentary sherry on the dresser. A lovely touch, although unfortunately I don't like sherry.

The initially positive impressions were gently eroded as everything creaked to the touch - the floors, the mattress, the bed-head. Once we lay still on the bed, the noise continued. We realised that more creaking was also coming through the wall. We reasoned the rooms must have been symmetrical with the head of each bed next to each other. We could hear every word of the couple next door, their trips to the bathroom, and their movements around the bed. Thankfully they were only talking.

The noise was a minor annoyance and thankfully the couple settled down to sleep before we did. Although we were awoken with a start at 1.30am as another couple next door arrived back from their night out.

It is always difficult to review a place when the nature of the building itself (or indeed the behaviour of other guests) is the cause of some troubles. It feels cruel to mark a place down simply because it's an old building because that is also part of its charm. It can't very easily be sound-proofed or rebuilt. But it did all form part of the experience and we can only review the experience we had.

At breakfast time we entered the dining room, passing by the table to pick up some juice, and we went to sit down to decide what we wanted. As we're so used to staying in B&Bs, we did it without thinking and nearly took some fruit too. But when we looked at the menu, the penny dropped. Since we had to pay extra for breakfast, the self-service food was not free - something we'd got used to elsewhere over the last few days. According to the menu, juice was only allowed if we bought the Continental Breakfast option. A naive little mistake by us, but it would have been nice if there had been staff in the breakfast room to steer us. When a member of staff did appear, he was smirking and had been larking around with the female member of staff in the doorway of the dining room. He didn't seem to be taking his duties especially seriously and it added to the overall sense of disappointment we were feeling.

I'm sure the juice wouldn't have been an issue if it came down to it, but it acted as a reminder of how much we were already paying.

For simplicity, and also because it was cheaper, we went continental - but it was not very enjoyable. Four types of cereal, none of which we much cared for, yoghurt, watermelon, toast, and an urn which dispensed the weakest tea in the universe. It was disappointing considering it all cost extra.

When we checked out, we felt our first touch of warm service. The lady who saw us leave, who I assume to be the owner, was lovely. I only wish she'd greeted us at the start because it created a whole different impression. The girl who checked us in was totally professional and can't be faulted in terms of her duty - but she was just an employee reading her lines, and there was no conversation. We'd seen no-one except youngsters up until this point.

We left with mixed emotions, wondering whether we'd been unlucky in not having a better experience, because it felt like we over-paid for an imperfect stay.

  • Stayed August 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 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
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
PaulMcClean, Owner at Woodlands Country House Hotel, responded to this review, November 6, 2013
We are overall disappointed that this guest did not enjoy their stay. We are continually doing maintenance to ensure that the bedrooms and furniture are comfoirtable for our guests. We have shared this review with our staff. Relating to the breakfast, we would like to make the point that most guests use Booking.com and Laterooms to obtain discount prices for rooms and the response of many hotels is to provide their lowest price, which by necessity excludes breakfast. If we included the price of breakfast we would look expensive compared to other providers. We would also like to point out that we have compared our breakfast pricing to other providers who individually price breakfast items and the price of both our continental breakfast and the Full English as an extention of the buffet is also very competitive.. It is the responsibility of the guest to check what the rate they are paying includes when they book discount rates with the Online Travel Agents.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
20 reviews 20 reviews
7 hotel reviews
Reviews in 12 cities Reviews in 12 cities
17 helpful votes 17 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed August 18, 2013

Location very convenient just off M5, with nice views.
Helpful staff/owners
We had a sandwich for lunch on the terrace, all was very good, except that my ham sandwich was made with what I call plastic (reformed) ham. Later, I drew this to the owners attention, he went away to investigate and came back with apologies because the wrong sort of ham had been purchased.
We ate a la carte in the evening, which was good.
Bed etc. of average comfort, it was a four poster room at the front over top of the bar. For a Friday night, there was a little noise from the bar, but didn't go on very late and therefore was perfectly fine.
Bathroom and bedroom fittings are becoming tired, was disappointed to see an electric shower in the bathroom, but it worked very well with plenty of hot water.
I think the new owners have quite a lot of work over the next couple of years to bring it back up to a good standard.
Just a few too many spiders lurking in some corners - but it is in the middle of the country-side.
While here, a walk to the top of Brent Knoll is thoroughly recommended - brilliant views.

  • Stayed August 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 2 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 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.
Senior Contributor
29 reviews 29 reviews
18 hotel reviews
Reviews in 19 cities Reviews in 19 cities
20 helpful votes 20 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 8, 2013 via mobile

We bought a special deal with Travelzoo for the 7 course taster menu and we weren't disappointed.It was a beautiful summers evening and other guests were enjoying their free glass of proseco sitting on the patio area. We decided to drink ours at the table and take in the beautiful dining room which was an ideal setting for such an evening Shortly afterwards we were greeted by one of the co owners who made us feel we were individuals and not just another couple dining.
The staff, all youngsters, but who were very efficient and friendly also made us very welcome and sorted out very quickly our drink requirements and how we wanted our meat cooked
We were subsequently greeted by the other co owner who equally made us feel very welcome

We thoroughly enjoyed each course which were cooked to perfection and presented very nicely indeed.
A really enjoyable evening which we would certainly do again but it would have to be a special deal !

  • Stayed August 2013
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Bristol, United Kingdom
Senior Contributor
33 reviews 33 reviews
19 hotel reviews
Reviews in 22 cities Reviews in 22 cities
53 helpful votes 53 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed August 5, 2013

Like many, took advantage of the 7 course taster menu. Lovely setting and Paul works hard at being a good host. For us it didn't quite work. The menu looked good but having now experienced a number of dining experiences my summary would be:
Well balanced menu on paper.
Chicken terrine (deconstructed) - too cold and accompaniments watery and bland. When it arrived we had to ask for the wine list as we hadn't been offered anything since the flat prosecco (which was replaced no problem). There was a large tray of butter but when we asked if we could have bread were told it came with the second course...
Salmon and prawn terrine very nice
Goats cheese salad - very nice
Steamed rabbit suet pudding - rabbit overcooked and dry, sadly.
Fillet of beef- nicely presented. I asked for medium rare, the wife medium. I'd say they arrived medium and medium/well. I guess this is the problem with a small piece of meat. Horseradish was in danger of overpowering the rosti.
Lemon sorbet - absolutely lovely
Chocolate and rum parfait - very nice but we both had different size portions so I lost out as the wife wanted the large one!
Drinks were reasonably priced. Paul worked hard, but the ambience was a little subdued.
While we were waiting to dine another couple arrived and were offered the tasting menu at the same price as us so it wasn't a voucher special but a general offer open to all diners.
Fillet of beef

  • Stayed August 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 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.
1 review
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 4, 2013 via mobile

We have just returned from my daughter's Hen Weekend at Woodlands. From the minute we arrived we felt very much at home and very welcome. We had sole occupancy of the hotel and it felt like our very own country house for the weekend.

Our weekend consisted of craft activities, manicures and pedicures and glorious food! Lunch, afternoon tea, dinner and breakfast were all delicious and served by very friendly and helpful staff.

The bedrooms were all lovely as were the public rooms and the cosy bar.

Thank you Sarah for looking after us so well.

Stayed August 2013, traveled with friends
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Woodlands Country House Hotel

Address: Hill Lane, Brent Knoll TA9 4DF, England
Location: United Kingdom > England > Somerset > Brent Knoll
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Suites Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 3 Hotels in Brent Knoll
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:4 star — Woodlands Country House Hotel 4*
Number of rooms: 10
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Woodlands Country House HotelSet at the base of the Knoll in a beautiful part of Somerset, close to the M5, but far enough away not to see or hear it. Surrounded by beautiful countryside, ideal for leisurely walks, afternoon cream tea in the garden, cocktails whilst watching the sun set over the Quantock Hills. A place to relax and enjoy lovely local cuisine, all made at Woodlands. We are proud of our little hotel, and look forward to welcoming you to Woodlands. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Woodlands Country Hotel
Woodlands Country Brent Knoll
Woodlands Country House Hotel Brent Knoll, Somerset

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