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“Lady Cavandish's Shadow”

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The Devonshire Arms Hotel & Spa
Ranked #1 of 1 Hotels in Bolton Abbey
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed September 1, 2008

It was a 50th birthday party so what better than to stay the night at The Devonshire Arms Hotel near Skipton. Wonderful setting near Bolton Priory and the River Wharfe but near a main road, busy at weekends.
Good points; excellent attentive staff who all seemd able to speak English, never a safe assumption in many hotels. The pool and gym were first class being in a separate building, a converted barn.

Less good is the overpowing influence of Lady Cavandish (Duchess of Devonshire) whose input and inspiration were the impetus for the upgrading 20 years ago of the hotel from a coaching inn, however her shadow is everywhere from the welcome letter to the information pack.
The hotel has aspirations to being 5* but our room was 4* in furnishings but cramped into a 3* space (too small) at a 5* price of £220 for one night, 2 people B & B. If we had taken dinner that was priced at £57. The room rate was supposedly the discounted conference rate!

  • Stayed: August 2008, traveled as a couple
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4  Thank hotelchris
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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1,367 - 1,373 of 1,418 reviews

Reviewed August 30, 2008

This is a hotel that needs to look at what it offers. The situation is fantastic but that alone should not allow the hotel to charge as it does for poor quality. The rooms are small. The decor makes the rooms seem even smaller than they are. Nothing matches. For the exhorbitant price(a "special" rate of £220 for a night bed and breakfast) you would not expect there to be holes in various doors and walls where fittings had been removed. The water pressure was poor. The place feels tired and uncared-for. Breakfast was however very good.

  • Stayed: June 2008, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank zenovya
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 20, 2008

The room accomodation was poor and the bathroom antiquated, the shower had a broken control spline. The worst room we have stayed in for the price in the UK or Europe.

The service in the Brasserie restaurant was poor with no bread provided and an error in the wine billing.

The main restaurant, the Burlington was superb, and the wine waiter Nigel went out of his way to be helpful.

The management failed to respond to our first E-mail of concern and required written prompting.

In summary, eat in the Burlington and avoid the rest of the hotel.

  • Stayed: February 2008, traveled as a couple
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3  Thank Intenditore
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 1, 2008

Really enjoyed our stay at Devonshire Arms, really relaxing country house hotel. Combined one night stay with a spa day. Spa treatments were very good, the pool and gym are housed in a converted barn, good equipment but only small space for swimming etc. Relaxation room and small members lounge were fine but not luxurious. First impressions of the hotel were good, nicely decorated room and good size, fresh coffee and tea, bottled water, Molton Brown toiletries, bathrobes etc. 10/10 for the hairdryer and sockets next to the vanity mirror - for any of the ladies that read my other reviews this is usually a real bug bear for me! Only small negatives were that the room was extremely hot, (but we worked out it was located over the main entrance hall, open fire which was burning away in June (!) bathroom a little old fashioned, 17 century plumbing to match the house so the shower was terrible.

Took afternon tea in the 'dog lounge' where the Duchesses has a collection of her canine portraits and made friends with a life size ornamental Labrador who resides next to the fireplace :0)

After a little negotiation to amend the 10 course tasting menu to suit a husband who doesnt eat meat we had a great meal, so was really pleased as we had previous bad feedback re the food from other family members who have stayed previously. Oxidised wine with one of the courses which was quickly remedied but overall tip top service and food. Breakfast also very good.

The Devonshire estate is beautiful so well worth a visit to the Abbey, fantastic scenery great for walking or to take the kids bathing in the stream, lots of people enjoying the sunshine over the weekend. Yes really enjoyed it and will look forward to visiting again particularly to dine in the restaurant again.

  • Stayed: June 2008, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank LadyGrayChorley
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed April 28, 2008

I have no idea how you can rate this hotel. The location is fabulous, the ambience is wonderful, but if you want a decent sized room you have to go for a Bishopdale at a £370 rack rate, and even then you are not certain to get a decent bathroom. (The 'cheaper' rooms are small with tiny bathrooms.)

The car park with its meeter and greeter service, the entrance porch complete with wellies and rods, the gorgeous reception area with log fires and settles, and the cocktail lounge exude character and charm. The brasserie, in my opinion, is fairly charmless and not particularly comfortable, and the Burlington is overly formal and stuffy.

Most of the staff are wonderful - service in the cocktail lounge is usually wonderful, and the 'bell boys' in their lovely tweed suits manage that great combination of helpfulness without being subservient. BUT - a 12.5% service charge is automatically added to your bill - a practice that I know is becoming widespread but which I dislike. And why is the service charge added to the room rate?

Is it worth the money? Probably. Is it value for money? Probably not.

  • Stayed: April 2008, traveled with family
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4  Thank Nildesperanda
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed December 10, 2007

Went to Devonshire Arms as a surprise for my mums 90th.

Lovely set up- the rooms are all individually decorated, so worth asking them to describe the bedrooms when you make a booking. There is the old house and the wharfedale wing.

Really nice lounge area, great for relaxing in and the Burlington restaurant was lovely for our special dinner. It was nice because the set a very nice table for all of us in the conservatory. The staff had no pretentions- very friendly and down to earth.

Talking of the food- it was out of this world, very special! Memories of our complete family getting together will stay with me forever- it was marvellous. We also had treatments in the spa, fantastic! make sure you book though- my husband and I thought we would book on the day- there weren't any and we were VERY disappointed!

Worth visiting for a very special occasion!!!

Stayed: December 2007
1  Thank LisaNilsson65
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 28, 2007

I have just returned from a mid week break with my husband at The Devonshire Arms and thoroughly enjoyed it. From the moment we arrived the hotel felt very christmassy, a big log fire and beautiful tree greeted us, most welcome after a wet, cold walk around Bolton Abbey. Our room was nicely decorated and overlooked yet another christmas tree complete with lights outside. There is a nice spa area and the jacuzzi relieved some aches and pains.
We ate in the brasserie, which is really bright and modern, a complete surprise, it is easy to forget you are in the middle of the country. I had the fish and chips, which were fantastic and a hearty portion, great after our long walk. House wine was really good quality (makes a change) service was attentive and I thought that the meal was great value.
All the staff we encountered were very friendly and chatty, it felt very relaxed. Unfortunately we were only there for one night but will definitely return to eat in the main restaurant.

  • Stayed: November 2007, traveled as a couple
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Thank chris49Yorkshire
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about The Devonshire Arms Hotel & Spa

Address: | Bolton Abbey Estate, Bolton Abbey, Yorkshire Dales National Park BD23 6AJ, England
Location: United Kingdom > England > Yorkshire > North Yorkshire > Yorkshire Dales National Park > Bolton Abbey
Amenities:
Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 1 Hotels in Bolton Abbey
Price Range: $227 - $478 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4 star — The Devonshire Arms Hotel & Spa 4*
Number of rooms: 40
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Set within 30,000 acres of land on the Bolton Abbey Estate, this impressive 4-star country house hotel boasts an award-winning restaurant, an adult-only spa, a gym and an indoor pool. Skipton is just 5.8 miles away and Harrogate is 16.2 miles away. Each elegant room has a spacious seating area and a flat-screen TV with a DVD player ans satellite channels. All rooms offer different views of The Dales, River Wharfe and Italian Garden, and all rooms feature a luxury bathroom. Situated in the very heart of the Yorkshire Dales, The Devonshire Arms Hotel has a luxurious spa featuring a sauna, steam room, swimming pool and whirlpool. A range of treatments and massages are available and the property also has outdoor tennis courts. Clay pigeon shooting, fly-fishing, and falconry displays are all possible within the Bolton Abbey Estate. The award-winning Burlington Restaurant offers a seasonal menu using the finest local produce. Guests can enjoy the ever-popular afternoon tea, and there is also a lounge bar. The Brasserie offers guests a more modern gastro-menu featuring some of Yorkshire's favourite dishes. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
The Devonshire Arms Country House Hotel Bolton Abbey
The Devonshire Arms Country House Hotel And Spa
Devonshire Arms Country Skipton
Devonshire Arms Country Hotel
The Devonshire Arms Hotel & Spa Bolton Abbey, Yorkshire

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