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Macdonald Swan Hotel

Traveler (255)
Room & Suite (50)
Dining (17)
Certificate of Excellence


#10 of 14 hotels in Grasmere
Certificate of Excellence
GreenLeaders Bronze level
Built in 1650 as a coaching inn, and mentioned in a Wordsworth poem "The Waggoner", Macdonald Swan Hotel, Grasmere is one of the oldest hotels in the Lake District. Nestled in the Cumbrian countryside, with views across the Fells, our cosy and inviting hotel is ideal for walkers and cyclists. With open sunny vistas in summer and blazing log fires in winter, it's the ideal base for exploring the wonders of the Lake District National Park. Afterwards, relax with a delicious meal in our restaurant or enjoy the convivial atmosphere of the Walkers' Bar before retiring to a traditionally - furnished, comfortable room.
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Property amenities
Free parking
Free High Speed Internet (WiFi)
Bar / lounge
Horseback riding
Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly )
Meeting rooms
Non-smoking hotel
Free internet
Breakfast available
Breakfast buffet
Breakfast in the room
Laundry service
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Room features
Non-smoking rooms
Family rooms
Room service
Flatscreen TV
Good to know
Great View
Languages Spoken
English, Spanish, Polish


Full view
69Somewhat walkable
Grade: 69 out of 100
27Restaurantswithin 0.75 miles
14Attractionswithin 0.75 miles
100Room tips
Traveler rating
  • 553
  • 477
  • 230
  • 77
  • 40
Time of year
Traveler type
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  • English
Popular mentions
Just on the outskirts of Grasmere this is a great hotel and the food is good too. Both the breakfast and the evening meal. You have a choice of cooked breakfasts as well as a buffet style cereals bar. It is about a 10 min walk into Grasmere centre, the walk is scenic and only a few passing cars. Everyone was really friendly at the hotel and we took our dog for the first time and it went well. There is a £15.00 charge for the dog that isn't mentioned at bookings.com. We were in a double classic room because we had a dog and it was OK. Tea and coffee facilities and a TV in the room. Basic but good. We would stay again.
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We have a wonderful time yet again at this Hotel. Antony the Manager and all his team are the most welcoming people you could find to make the most of your Visit. The food is splendid, the rooms are of good proportion, with excellent beds and linen and cleaned perfectly, daily. You only have to ask the team for anything and they willingly oblige, nothing too much trouble for them. Dogs are welcome and its perfectly placed to get your walking boots on for a fabulous hike, knowing all your comfort is assured on your return. I am not going to mention every member of the team as they all know we adore them, and we always look forward to a retuen visit. Antony we thank you for your welcome, fabulous sense of humour and another fabulous few days break. You & the whole Team are fabulous.
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Response from Antony O, General Manager at Macdonald Swan Hotel
Responded 6 days ago
Dear RachJoe66 thank you so much for your kind comments regarding the team here at the Swan. We all look forward to welcoming both you and Joe back again soon regards Antony
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Having read few negative reviews recently, here is a positive one. My wife and I have stayed at the Swan hotel many times over the last 19 years and stayed there again for 2 nights this week. While there were some occasional variations in standards a few years ago. In recent years under the current management of Mr Antony Osborne-Ford, we cannot fault the standard of service. As usual the accommodation, breakfasts and evening meals were very good. We were in Executive room 3 which was spotlessly clean and comfortable, as are the public areas. We received our usual friendly welcome and the staff, particularly in the restaurant are polite and efficient. Although the service in the Bar is a bit erratic. The hotel is in a very good location and has a good car park with clearly marked out bays, I always feel it is safe leaving our car there. Grasmere village is close by and there are a good choice of walks, my favourites are through Easedale valley and on to Easedale Tarn returning via far Easedale. Helm Crag is good if you can make it to the top, where the views are worth the effort. These walks do require a decent level of fitness. Lancrigg wood is a shorter less strenuous walk; refreshments are available at the end of these walks at the Lancrigg hotel which has lovely gardens and are part of the William Wordsworth Memorial gardens. The riverside walks in Grasmere are easy and relaxing. Cumbria being a popular tourist area, expect to pay above average prices for food and drink.
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Response from Antony O, General Manager at Macdonald Swan Hotel
Responded 6 days ago
Dear Derek A thank you for your review following your recent stay with us here at the Swan. I have passed on your comments to the whole team and we all look forward to welcoming you back again soon warmest regards Antony
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We were greeted with smiles as we checked in. The food & beverage manager made us feel very welcome. The general manager was also working reception on our arrival and was lovely to chat to. The room was very comfortable for three, and the restaurant accommodated our flexible dining time. The staff make this hotel a home from home.
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We visited the lake District to attend a birthday lunch in Ambleside and booked into the Swan as we’d passed it many times and imagined it would be a nice place to stay. The lunch was on the day we arrived so we phoned the hotel on our drive up to the lake District to see if we could have an early check in so that we could change before going on to the lunch, the young lady we spoke to was trying to be helpful but she spoke to a colleague who just recited the check in policy so, I said we’d still go to the hotel in the hope that there might be something available and at the very least we could change in a toilet (not ideal). Either way she said we could leave our bags with them until the room was available. We arrived at the hotel at around midday in the hope that the young lady was still on reception as she sounded like she wanted to help. We went to reception and were greeted by a rather stern gentleman who made it clear that check in was 3pm and that we could use the disabled toilets to change, although not ideal we accepted the offer and got changed. We asked if we could leave our luggage as we were going to have a drink at the lunch and would be getting a taxi back, the gentleman at reception confirmed we could leave our bags in the hotel which was perfect, we were directed to place them next to the main staircase in the hotel. We made it clear that we wouldn’t be back until the evening We went off to our lunch and returned later that evening, when we arrived back we were shocked to see our three bags (one was an open topped hold-all) still next to the stairs. No one was at reception and we had to call a member of staff from the bar to check us in, which she did although she was unsure of the process. As she handed us the room key the receptionist turned up, I raised the issue of our bags being left unattended and the receptionist protested that there was always someone on reception so they’d been perfectly safe even though when we arrived there wasn’t a soul about. We felt that it was unacceptable to leave our luggage in such a public place unattended and were shocked that they hadn’t put our bags in our room once it was available. I was not happy about this and raised the issue with the receptionist at check out who was the rather stern gentleman that we left the bags with. I was told that there wasn’t a storage room for bags and they were perfectly safe where they were and what’s more they do not take bags to guests rooms for them, I was astounded by his view on the matter and asked if the manager was available but it turned out he was the manager, I paid the bill and left without any acknowledgment of the issue on his part and a weak “thank you”for the payment. During our discussion about the bags I did point my finger at him in an attempt to get my point over which was rude and I did apologise for that, just a pity he couldn’t see my point of view It was such a shame, our stay otherwise had been great. The breakfast was perfect and the staff serving breakfast and the bar staff were brilliant.
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$146 - $291 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
hotel macdonald swan, macdonald swan grasmere
United KingdomEnglandLake DistrictGrasmere
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