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“Potentially excellent, but lacked personal touch” 4 of 5 stars
Review of Rectory Hotel

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Rectory Hotel
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3.0 of 5 Guest house   |   Crudwell SN16 9EP, England   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #1 of 2 Crudwell B&B and Inns
Certificate of Excellence 2014
Teacher in England
Top Contributor
82 reviews 82 reviews
16 hotel reviews
Reviews in 53 cities Reviews in 53 cities
68 helpful votes 68 helpful votes
“Potentially excellent, but lacked personal touch”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed April 18, 2012

The Rectory Hotel is a perfectly pleasant place to stay (and eat), but it lacks the personal touch that would ensure a return visit from me. The reception staff had the professional briskness of a hotel chain used to corporate events and society weddings but lacking the friendly, conversational manner that I was expecting, based upon other reviews on this site. I saw one of the owners, Jonathan, both on the hotel grounds and at the pub he runs, but he seemed too shy to speak and busied himself while his other staff dealt with the public.

Our room, Nympsfield, was clean and bright and had a great view. Others on this site have had issues with room temperature and rattling windows, but for me, both were fine. The bathroom was serviceable, but the shower, as noted by previous guests, was a problem. In order to get the water temperature right, I had to either stand under the shower head, which was fixed, immovable, two inches from my scalp, or stand outside the open door, which would have soaked the floor.

I appreciated the extras: digital Roberts radio, white dressing gowns, comfortable (very soft) beds and pillows, and bath products. The lack of coffee and tea service in the room seems a hot topic in this forum, and I didn’t actually take advantage of the free tray that was on offer by phoning reception, but I wonder if the hotel should bend the Slow Food rules a bit and at least provide a mini fridge on each floor, as calling reception out of hours is not really an option.

The restaurant provided good value for money – a three course evening meal at just over £30 per person – but the service, though swift, was unskilled. Our young waitress “didn’t really know about wine” when asked for a recommendation to go with the meal and various unused items remained on the table throughout the meal. Nevertheless, we enjoyed a variety of dishes, including a complimentary spinach strudel starter that was especially tasty. Breakfast on both days of our stay was exceptionally good.

The hotel itself is beautiful and tastefully decorated with quirky pieces that show inspirational flair, such as the patchwork covered armchairs and pop art style farm scenes hanging in the dining room. However, at the risk of sounding like an eco-crank, I did feel uncomfortable about the huge number of coral pieces and seashells on display throughout the house, given the
at-risk status of the world’s coral reefs. Perhaps this issue is negligible for others, but for me, it was the same as featuring an impressive ivory collection or an elephant foot waste bin.

We learned when checking out that the heated pool had been, in fact, open to guests during our stay, despite the hotel’s information pack saying that it was only open in the summer months. It’s a shame that we weren’t told about this when we checked in.

This is a lovely hotel that would most likely suit a wedding party, and the owners have got a lot of things right. With a little more attention and personal touches, it could easily earn five stars from me.

Room Tip: Bathrooms seem to be a deciding factor here. Nymphsfield's shower was claustrophobic. Some roo...
See more room tips
  • Stayed April 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 3 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
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
TheRectoryHotel, General Manager at Rectory Hotel, responded to this review, May 5, 2012
Dear GeorgeHCS,

Thank you for taking the time to write a review.

We are very sorry that you found that the hotel lacked a personal touch, we pride ourselves in quite the opposite, as you will see from our other reviews. We try to make The Rectory feel like a home and find that our staff reflect that and I am sorry that you did not feel this on this occasion.

I am very sorry about the issues with Nympsfields shower, we will look into this and this sort of feed back is very valued so thank you.

With regards to the tea and coffee, we very much like your idea of the Mini Fridge on each floor and are looking into this currently, so thank you.

The Pool is normally open a little later in the year but given the beautiful weather that we had in March we did open it slightly earlier this year. There are towels in reception as an indication of this (in winter there are logs in reception in place of the towels.) But I am sorry that you did not get to take advantage of this on this occasion, especially as we have just had the area refurbished and it is looking great!

We hope to welcome you back to The Rectory in the future.

Kind regards
Jenna Halliday
General Manager
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176 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (45)
Date | Rating
  • English first
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English first
London
Top Contributor
56 reviews 56 reviews
15 hotel reviews
Reviews in 32 cities Reviews in 32 cities
22 helpful votes 22 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 13, 2012

Beautiful place , made us feel as though we were in a Famous Five novel and that any minute lashings of ginger beer would be served. All the communal areas are beautifully decorated and the gardens are gorgeous. We walked across to the nearby church which is also worth a visit.
We didn't eat at the hotel for dinner but breakfast the next morning was excellent.

All the staff are very friendly and helpful
Would I go back - definitely , hopefully next time for longer than one night

  • Stayed April 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 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
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
TheRectoryHotel, General Manager at Rectory Hotel, responded to this review, May 5, 2012
Thank you so much for your lovely review, I have passed it on to all of the staff and we hope to welcome you back to The Rectory in the near future (and as you say, hopefully for more thank one night!)

Kindest regards
Jenna Halliday
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1 review
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 29, 2012

We arrived at the Rectory direct from Texas, worn out and with a 5-month old still on American time. It was the perfect place to have a relaxing start to our trip. The hotel itself was easy and very good, with the best food around at both their in-house restaurant as well as at the pub across the street (same owners). Also, it is close to many sites and allows easy access. Best of all was the cheerful, smiling service that was always available and very thorough. Would love to return some day!

  • Stayed March 2012
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 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.
TheRectoryHotel, General Manager at Rectory Hotel, responded to this review, May 5, 2012
Thank you very much for such a lovely review.

We are so glad that you were able to come here and relax after such a long journey and hope that you very much enjoyed the rest of your trip in England- and hope that your five month old didn't take too long to adjust to the UK Time!

Kindest regards
Jenna Halliday
General Manager
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
essex
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
8 helpful votes 8 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 27, 2012

We stayed just one night but would happily return. Very personal, quirky decoration, and just a nice feel. The staff were very friendly, food good, especially breakfast.

With the room rate there was a promise of a toiletry set. It was forgotten but would you believe it they sent it to my home address. I think that is going the extra mile. Thank you

  • Stayed February 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 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.
Attleborough, United Kingdom
Top Contributor
131 reviews 131 reviews
41 hotel reviews
Reviews in 58 cities Reviews in 58 cities
96 helpful votes 96 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed February 22, 2012

I have delayed this report awaiting a second visit as I wished to ensure the administrative failings that blighted our first visit were a one-off and not the norm’. Thankfully these failings did not reappear.
Standing in an elevated setting above the quiet A-road which winds through the village the Rectory enjoys a prime position surrounded by well tended gardens and lawns and next to the interesting All Saints church, of Saxon origin and with some renowned stained glass, well worth a visit. There is plenty of parking, even for your helicopter!
Inside the public rooms have been decorated in some style although the mix and match furnishings would appear to have come from the local sale room and chosen for price rather than elegance or comfort. Certainly more than one piece has seen better days. A previous reviewer called it shabby chic, a little harsh perhaps but with a flavour of the truth. Unfortunately we found the hotel cold as the central heating seemed limited and the tending of the lovely log fires more than a little haphazard. Bedrooms contained the same eclectic mix and match furniture but the beds are very comfortable, the duvets light and cosy; the linen crisp and white, unfortunately the old fashioned sash windows rattle in a breeze which disturbed more than one guest, and are rather draughty which leaves the bedrooms decidedly chilly. Bathrooms are basically modern if sometimes not totally practically (particularly for those with any mobility impairment).
Service is a highlight; nothing would seem to be too much to ask. But the generally young and inexperienced staff (charming and personable though they are) really need better training and/or supervision as such things as clearing up the debris of glasses, bottles, tea and coffee cups etc. is regularly neglected and left to an occasional blitz leaving both the bar and lounge looking littered and unwelcoming, while table service can be a little amateur. Concise and excellent menus feature in the pleasant wood panelled dining room with the emphasis on local seasonal ingredients, although the occasional dish does disappoint generally the cooking is of a high standard. Breakfast is outstanding, quality ingredients really well cooked: a great way to start the day.
Unfortunately none of three computer users could persuade the wifi network to connect them to the internet. Even after having the routers re-booted none of the connections offered access. Very disappointing in this day and age.
One important point: if you like an early morning cup of tea or coffee ask for a tray in your room, it will be willingly provided but not as standard.

  • Stayed February 2012, 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
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 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.
TheRectoryHotel, General Manager at Rectory Hotel, responded to this review, February 29, 2012
Thank you firstly for taking the time to write this review and secondly for giving us two opportunities to get it right. I am sorry that we did not meet your standards on this visit.

With regards to your comments on the public areas of the hotel, the charm of The Rectory is that it is very much a mix of both high end antiques and more modern and contemporary pieces. Without showing off, no on second thoughts I shall, we are one of only 30 Hotels to be featured in Rizzoli Press New Yorks 'English Hideaways' due in part to our ecclectic mix of furniture.

We are glad you found the service to be a highlight. I will make sure that the staff are taking a more proactive look at the bar and morning room for tea and coffee cups.

Again, thank you very much for your comments.

Kind regards
Jenna Halliday
General Manager
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London
1 review
3 of 5 stars Reviewed February 21, 2012

We stayed for a weekend in February and were a bit disappointed - the staff were very helpful and friendly but I think they are being let down by a lack of investment.... shabby chic is fine but mattresses that are so old and soft that you can't sleep, as well as furniture that looks like it comes from student rooms, is not. Or at least, not at that price. Our dinner at the sister pub 'The Potting Shed' was fantastic though.

  • Stayed February 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 1 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 2 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.
TheRectoryHotel, General Manager at Rectory Hotel, responded to this review, February 29, 2012
Thank you for taking the time to write a review.

With regards to your comments on the furniture, all furniture has been sourced from a range of local antique and bracante shops by the directors of the hotel. It has always been the ethos of the hotel to make sure everything does not look like it has been sourced on mass and is more the look of a friends country house.

I am sorry that the mattress was not to your liking, this is something we will look into. We regularly review the bedding and matresses and will look into this one with a matter of urgency.

We are glad that you found the staff to be friendly and enjoyed your meal at The Potting Shed and hope to welcome you back to The Rectory in the future.

Kind regards
Jenna Halliday
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
S Wales
Top Contributor
245 reviews 245 reviews
194 hotel reviews
Reviews in 136 cities Reviews in 136 cities
179 helpful votes 179 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed February 1, 2012

Stayed for one night (Friday) for a company bash in mid-January. There were 14 of us for dinner and 4 couples staying the night.

I liked the casual laid back approach to the place. It wasn't high brow and was, in fact, much like visiting someone's house. Quite a nice house but a house rather than a hotel.

The room we had (Pennsylvania from memory) was large and pleasant enough and 'quaint'. The en-suite was down a small flight of stairs. The issue with the room:

1. No coffee or tea making facilities - why not? All it needs is a tray with a small kettle and a tea bag or two;
2. The double bed was two beds pushed together. The main issue was that the mattresses on each were of different 'strengths'. The one on my side of the bed was softer than the wifes'. If it had been the other way around it would have been a bonus!
3. If you are over 6' the shower would be difficult. I'm 6' and just fitted.

Food wise we were in the conservatory by ourselves which was good. Food was good but clearly they had difficulty catering for 14 of us given that food wasn't that hot and one person had to send it back to warm it up.

The positives:

1. Staff were very good and helpful
2. Breakfast was excellent
3. The overall ambiance was excellent.

It comes across as excellent place for a quiet weekend. Giving it 3 stars would be mean.

BTW: If you are interested in reading about the history of Rectories like this one I recommend the Bill Bryson book 'At Home: A Short History of Private Life'

  • Stayed January 2012, traveled on business
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 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.
TheRectoryHotel, General Manager at Rectory Hotel, responded to this review, February 29, 2012
Thank you for your review.

With regards to tea and coffee making facilites, we are members of the slow food movement and wish to use only fresh products which is why we do not provide tea and coffee making facilities. However, it does state in the guest information folder in all rooms that fresh tea and coffee can be bought to you at any time and there will be no charge for this, we can also provide a tray with fresh tea and coffee making facilities (including fresh milk) at any time for no charge.

We are sorry you did not find your bed comfortable, however, we regularly have requests for twin beds and so we do need to have these paricular beds in some rooms. However, it does clearly state on our website which rooms can and cannot be twinned.

With regards to your meal, we regularly cater for weddings for upto 110 guests and never have a problem with the heat of the food so I can only assume that this was an exception to the rule and apologise for this.

We are glad that you enjoyed your stay at The Rectory overall and hope to see you again.

Kind regards
Jenna Halliday
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 Rectory Hotel

Address: Crudwell SN16 9EP, England
Location: United Kingdom > England > Cotswolds > Crudwell
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Suites Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 2 B&Bs / Inns in Crudwell
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:3 star — Rectory Hotel 3*
Number of rooms: 12
Also Known As:
Rectory Hotel Crudwell, Wiltshire

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