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“Perfect wedding venue! But as a hotel guest I was left feeling gutted by the mediocre room and terrible night sleep.” 3 of 5 stars
Review of Barnsdale Hall Hotel

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Barnsdale Hall Hotel
3.0 of 5 Hotel   |   Stamford Road | Nr Oakham, Barnsdale, Oakham LE15 8AB, England   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #2 of 2 Hotels in Barnsdale
Hounslow, United Kingdom
Senior Contributor
34 reviews 34 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 17 cities Reviews in 17 cities
37 helpful votes 37 helpful votes
“Perfect wedding venue! But as a hotel guest I was left feeling gutted by the mediocre room and terrible night sleep.”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed July 13, 2014

My boyfriend and I (25 and 31) have just returned from Barnsdale Hall for a friend's wedding so I will split the review into 2 parts, the first for the venue as a wedding reception and secondly as a hotel.

Wedding Venue: I can honestly say that this was a gorgeous setting for a wedding, the reception venue (The Edith Western Suite) had a lovely outdoor area with comfy seats and umbrellas for shade to chill out and wait for the wedding breakfast and stunning views out over Rutland Water. Getting gorgeous photos was not a problem! The inside of the venue was beautifully decorated and sufficiently spacious to accommodate the wedding party and to allow for a good sized dance floor. The groom organised a surprise firework display which we viewed from the venue which was spectacular. The entire venue is picturesque and lovely to stroll round. I would thoroughly recommend this as a venue for a wedding without hesitation- for this section 5* is well deserved.

Hotel: The journey to the wedding was about 3 hours each way so we inquired about the cost of a room quoting the wedding party name- we were offered a standard double room that the wedding party had set aside and they were full price at £125- I was surprised that a discount was not offered for wedding guests (even just a small token discount) and very reluctant to pay that much, but given the drive and the fact that the hotel accommodation looked superb we decided what the hell and booked, thinking it would be a treat and a nice weekend away.

We are from the outer London area and regularly stay in hotels across the country for work so for £125 outside of London we were expecting 5* accommodation (a hotel where I live costing over £100 will get you something pretty fancy!). The accommodation looked incredible as we were walking through the grounds- little holiday chalets and rooms with balcony's, really posh. We stayed in the Oakley Suite of the hotel (it's a large complex with different sections, some uphill so be mindful if you have mobility issues) and I was really surprised by the room which was really small, no balcony, no air con just a small window so quite stuffy, shower pressure was minimal and to be honest the room was nothing special at all. (There are small double rooms advertised on the website as well- these must be really tiny....) We were a little disappointed but we aren't really the type to moan and the wedding day was going fantastic and we didn't want to put a downer on it so just accepted it. We did hear a few other wedding guests express disappointment at their rooms and the size of them and I think we were all allocated rooms in the same part of the hotel.

The bed was pretty hard but not too bad, pillows were lumpy and pretty awful but in isolation this wouldn't have been an issue. We left the reception at about 12.30am (DJ finished at 12 but bar remained open until 1am). Unfortunately just as we got into bed around 1am, the guests in the room that adjoined to ours (my sister and her friend) arrived back- because our room was separated only by a joining wall we could hear everything that was being said. After about 20 minutes I went and had a word with them and they said they would try to whisper- their room was small like ours and their bed was positioned directly the other side of the wall to our bed. I must stress that they were not being loud, they were literally just having a conversation and getting ready for bed but it was very audible from our room, so much so that there was no way that i could sleep through it. I was lucky that they were friends and I could ask them to be quieter - if this was random people I didn't know then this would have been really awkward. Had the rooms been arranged a little differently (with the beds at opposite ends) then this wouldn't have been as much of an issue. Even though they tried to be quiet after this our sleep was dreadful, I ended up shoving my ipod headphones into my ears (not at all comfy when your head is on a pillow) and laying with my head at the foot end of the bed to try to put some distance between myself and the neighbours! Plumbing was also very noisy in the morning -my partner thought it was a drill outside.

I have stayed in lots of hotels and a bit of noise from the next room (slamming doors etc) is totally normal but i have never been in a hotel that I have literally been able to recount entire conversations from the room next door. I have backpacked round Australia and I am used to noisy hostels but I would absolutely not expect this in a £125 room. It was meant to be a nice treat but instead we were totally shattered for the whole day and decided just to go home rather than staying to explore the local area and use the facilities as we had intended. My parents had talked about getting a room once they saw how nice the place was but I am so glad they didn't as they would have been really upset at being kept awake that late (they would have gone to bed earlier).

Breakfast was average, selection was somewhat limited but ok. Fire alarm going off halfway through seemed to be a sign that our run of bad luck was not over! As I said, I didn't check out the facilities in the end so I can't comment but they looked nice.

I really am gutted to have to write this review because as a wedding venue this place is absolutely superb and had I not had such a terrible night sleep I would have definitely rated as 5* for the wedding venue and 4* for the room. Maybe it just feels more disappointing because you have to walk past so many amazing looking rooms to find yours is distinctly average and I definitely felt robbed of my £125! For a £60 premier inn room this would have been absolutely fine but not for a luxury hotel. I value a good night sleep and so that is why I have given a 3. Please bear in mind that my experience was in a specific part of the hotel and the chalets and some of the other rooms looked fantastic from the outside. I am gutted that I paid out so much money for a hotel room as a treat and I honestly would have expected to be able to sleep. We did mention this to the receptionist when she asked how our stay was, she apologized but no concession was offered, we would not have pushed this given members of the bridal party were in reception and I would not have wanted to offend anyone, given they chose this venue and it is special to them. If I hadn't mentioned that I was going to the wedding, perhaps I would have been allocated a better room.....

If you are going to a wedding here and want to stay over, I would suggest asking where the rooms are located, if its the Oakley complex then I wouldn't recommend parting with £125. I would advise paying more for a better room instead. Would I recommend this hotel for a wedding? Absolutely! But would I risk booking a hotel room here again, I am really sad to say that I wouldn't :(

Gutted.

Room Tip: Don't waste money on a standard double in the Oakley complex, they are small and over priced and...
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  • Stayed July 2014, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 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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483 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4 of 5 stars
  • Value
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (154)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Any
English first
UK
Contributor
14 reviews 14 reviews
7 hotel reviews
Reviews in 10 cities Reviews in 10 cities
25 helpful votes 25 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed July 8, 2014

Decided to stay in Rutland prior to a family reunion and chose Barnsdale Hall because of its close proximity to the water. Excellent service from Harriette on reception who went out of her way to help, providing advice on rooms, bed size etc before we finalised our booking. Had a lovely room with balcony overlooking the water. We actually found our beds very comfortable and we had a nice size bathroom, although shower was disappointingly low on pressure. Enjoyed a 7 mile walk around the peninsular (Hambleton) took slightly longer than we thought, just under 2 hours, and was quite strenuous with a few hills but ok if you're reasonably fit. So after freshening up we were keen to make our way down for dinner... unfortunately this is when it all went wrong :( The restaurant just doesn't match up to the hotel in any way at all, both from appearance right through to quality of food. You have a hotel that has wood panelling, character and charm and then a restaurant that feels like you've walked into 2/3 star hotel or a leisure centre. The bar is brightly lit and many people were there after having been to the gym/spa, so you have people in sportswear etc. and then hotel guests that might be dressed up a little for an evening meal.
Whilst the service was ok, the food was poor quality, with many items either overcooked or undercooked (hard new potatoes), but the worst thing was the warm white wine! We tried 2 bottles before realising that perhaps the fridge wasn’t working properly and decided to ask for an ice bucket – this still didn’t really work and after resorting to ice in our glasses we gave up! Chris the waiter was keen to try and help and did actually reduce our bill and gave us complimentary coffee… which was also awful. It’s such a shame because as other posts have said, the staff are lovely and really keen to help but they (and the chefs) are being badly let down by a dreadful restaurant that needs a serious overhaul and soon… because they are in danger of losing customers who will miss out on what is otherwise a lovely hotel.

  • Stayed July 2014, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 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.
Northampton
Senior Contributor
38 reviews 38 reviews
28 hotel reviews
Reviews in 27 cities Reviews in 27 cities
33 helpful votes 33 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 6, 2014

As a group of six ladies all joining together to celebrate their very special birthdays, Barnsdale Hall was the perfect choice. The location is beautiful, the rooms, although a little small, were very clean and the food excellent. The staff were all so obliging, efficient and friendly, especially in the restaurant. The price for the package was outstanding value and the member of staff on the reception who dealt with all enquiries about the booking and special requests on the phone and by email was exemplary: all requests were implemented, as arranged. In all, a thoroughly enjoyable stay marking a very special occasion for all members of the party; pity our stay couldn't have been longer. Thank you to everyone at Barnsdale Hall!

  • Stayed June 2014, traveled with friends
    • 5 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 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Nottingham, United Kingdom
Senior Contributor
34 reviews 34 reviews
6 hotel reviews
Reviews in 16 cities Reviews in 16 cities
26 helpful votes 26 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed July 3, 2014

Upgraded to Superior room to accommodate daughter. Room was large but strange as had no character or sole, layout disjointed too, huge bathroom, but lovely outlook over Rutland Water, with balcony and picture windows, with king-size bed and two settee's one being the sofabed for daughter.
Our first nights sleep was awful, with me aching so much from the mattress which we think was made from concrete, that I ended up sleeping on the other sofabed by 3am, beating my husband to it, so he ended up sharing other sofabed with daughter from 4am. We basically had to worst nights sleep or total lack of sleep ever! We asked reception in the morning if the was anything they could be, and bless they tried and changed the mattress to something out of Borstal that was made of just springs, no cushioning what so ever, we asked for an additional duvet to cover the mattress to make it softer, which it did, to a fashion, but only slightly.
We booked dinner, which was nice but not wow, but was put off by the fact that they don't change the menu daily or have daily specials, so it cant to fresh...!
They did try but the whole place is just a bit lack luster, which is a shame as it is in an amazing location.
Be prepared to be a mountain goat to get from main hotel building to restaurant or spa complex. Basically from main hotel building the are 2 or 3 other "hotels" within the complex but to get from our "hotel block" we had to walk out the building, behind the main hotel and either up a huge flight of outdoor steps or go into another hotel block to go up 2 flight in the lift, to exit the back of the building, up 2 flights of outdoor steps, through a car park to get to the restaurant for either breakfast or dinner. This building is also the spa complex and conference rooms.

Room Tip: Ask for a lake view, ground floor rooms look a brick walls!
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  • Stayed June 2014, traveled with family
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 1 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 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Lincoln, United Kingdom
1 review
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 25, 2014

verything about Barnsdale is just first class. The accomodation, so clean and cared for, the staff are so helpfull and cheery, they just get you in the mood. As for the restaurants, top class, well managed, well staffed, no long waits for your meal here. The food is just out of this world, Barnsdale have a number of chefs who just 'have what it takes!'. My stay is for six weeks at the time of writing I am halfway through my second week and just loving it. I am having to upgrade to a bigger room so that my wife and son can visit and enjoy where 'Daddy is living' and so to is my daughter and two grandchildren. I am so pleased I discovered Barnsdale, a real Gem! The hotel has such a fantastic position overlooking Rutland Water. Plenty of activities and some great walks.

Room Tip: The standard double is very acceptable, the single, although a very good standard, a little too smal...
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  • Stayed June 2014, traveled on business
    • 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.
Telford, United Kingdom
Senior Contributor
42 reviews 42 reviews
17 hotel reviews
Reviews in 24 cities Reviews in 24 cities
34 helpful votes 34 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed June 18, 2014

Booked two nights to cover my God Daughters wedding, as we had a distance to travel. It was a good move, as we made full use of an excellent pool and spa complex to relax after the journey.
Booking in was pretty straight forward as we had pre-booked a superior room with breakfast (which was excellent) and the room was made available a couple of hours early. The room was of a high standard, clean and well-furnished, with a window and a patio door to the balcony. The bathroom looked recently refurbished and was of a good standard. The bed was big and comfy-firm.
The room was on the second level room, which had two advantages. Firstly it overlooked the Rutland Water and you could sit on the balcony or in the room and enjoy the beautiful views. Secondly, when you left the building at the rear, you are on the same level as all of the amenities.
The hotel has access down to the water and a range of walking or cycle routes are available. The local area has a range of activities, and some good local pubs for dining. We will definitely return but may consider the lodges next time, which are roomy and look quite well appointed. Access for disabled persons looks reasonable with well-found paths and a lift in the accommodation main block.

Room Tip: Don't go for ground floor as rooms as the views are totally blocked by surrounding flowerbed wal...
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  • Stayed May 2014, traveled with friends
    • 4 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
    • 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.
Seaford, United Kingdom
Contributor
12 reviews 12 reviews
6 hotel reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 16, 2014

This was our third visit for business purposes. This time we decided to stay overnight and find time to explore the gardens and the spa facilities. We were treated to a very efficient and pleasant booking in, followed by the chance to unwind and refresh ourselves in the spa facilities. The staff in the spa, the restaurant and the reception area all went out of their way to be helpful and cheerful.

Room Tip: All rooms are within a complex of buuildings and all give easy access to other facilities and the gr...
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  • Stayed June 2014, traveled on business
    • 4 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
    • 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.
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Additional Information about Barnsdale Hall Hotel

Address: Stamford Road | Nr Oakham, Barnsdale, Oakham LE15 8AB, England
Location: United Kingdom > England > Rutland > Oakham > Barnsdale
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities ( Kid / Family Friendly ) Restaurant Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #2 of 2 Hotels in Barnsdale
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:3 star — Barnsdale Hall Hotel 3*
Number of rooms: 65
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
With this unique setting, personal charm, character, and friendly but attentive personnel, Barnsdale Hall Hotel is the perfect venue whatever your occasion may be. Extensive spa and leisure facilities makes it a haven in which to retreat, relax and unwind. With its breathtaking views of the natural splendours of Rutland Water where better to hold your wedding reception, corporate event, or a romantic getaway for two?Set in conservation parkland on the slopes overlooking Rutland Water, Barnsdale Hall Hotel is one of the most unusual and comprehensive hotel complexes in the United Kingdom. This makes it an ideal location for corporate business, conference and leisure pastimes. With a rich and varied range of things to do on and off site there is, we believe, no better position in which to be located in this country. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Barnsdale Hall Oakham
Hotel Barnsdale Hall
Barnsdale Hall Hotel Rutland

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