We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.
We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

“Some tweaks needed but could be excellent”

Best prices for -
Check In mm/dd/yyyy Check Out mm/dd/yyyy
Prices are for 1 room, 2 adults
Show Prices
Compare best prices from top travel sites
and 6 more sites!
Lifehouse Hotel & Spa
Ranked #1 of 1 Hotels in Thorpe le Soken
West Sussex, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
84 reviews
68 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 132 helpful votes
“Some tweaks needed but could be excellent”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed December 26, 2012 via mobile

79 quid for BnB - cant complain at all - especially with access to spa.

We had a lovely one night stay and would live to return in the summer. I have the following constructive comments as I would really like this place to stay open.

1. The signage from the road. It needs better and posher signage. Had I not been told this was a hotel I would never had known. It looks like an advert for a new housing estate. It needs replacing with something much better and the curb appeal needs a bit if improving. You need to make people want to drive in.

2. Love the fire in reception. Very welcoming

3. Basic room we had was fine. No complaints there.

4. Spa. We were jetlagged so were at the door at opening time. Shame the staff weren't. We went in and indeed it was open as guests were swimming in the pool bug there was a sign stopping entry into the jacuzzi ( which we ignored ) and the steam room and salt rooms were cool. The sauna wasn't even switched on.

If you are offering these facilities - make sure they are operational at the stated time.

When they were operating correctly ( temperature wise) they were good. A great facility. Although why are your poolside showers freezing cold ??

5. Breakfast.

No cappuccinos here. When asked for we were told " just tea n coffee ". Not good enough I'm afraid. Offer it / even if you charge extra.

Juice - please taste it beforehand. The grapefruit juice was f izzy !! As in off !!!
Reduce the variety if Juices if you are struggling to keep it fresh.

The rest was good. Hubby enjoyed the fry up. I found the cereals and added the fresh melon. Perhaps remove the tinned and frozen fruit. Even pieces of fresh fruit are better.

Overall. This place could be great if they take on board readers comments. It just needs some attention and some management. Would return in a heartbeat.

  • Stayed December 2012
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank sheluvz2travl
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Write a Review

1,618 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
    635
    488
    280
    123
    92
See reviews for
179
733
71
37
Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (393)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Chelmsford, United Kingdom
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed December 21, 2012

By far the best hotel i have ever stayed in. A very professional & lovely man picked us up from the station, upon arrival we were checked in quickly & shown to our room. Room was lovely & clean. Selection of hot drinks, waters & biscuits. That evening we went down to the spa area & had our 25min massages done (although it seemed less than this) & went on to use the spa facilities, pool & jacuzzi area all very clean & towels were available for us to use which was handy (saved us bringing them down from our room). Breakfast was lovely, wide selection of fresh fruits. Although our stay was amazing, after reading some of the latest reviews its sounds as if it has gone downhill which is such a shame as it has so much potential. I stayed in October 2012.

Room Tip: Time your treatments as i think they try and get away with doing it for less time then their suppose...
See more room tips
  • Stayed October 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank eyelashes123
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Colchester, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
6 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed December 20, 2012

Stayed here for fabulous one night dinner bed and breakfast deal. Great service in all areas, spotless throughout, lovely imaginative food and beautiful surroundings. Would thoroughly recommend and have no idea what other reviewers are talking about.

  • Stayed December 2012
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank DalmatiaDaisy
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
82 reviews
38 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 44 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed December 20, 2012

The hotel is really amazing it has all the treatmants you can wish for with swimming pool that looks like a dream and a full shower therapy.
I really enjoyed the bar with its huge range of drinks and the area of the hotel only 5 mins drive from the sea.

Room Tip: Take a room facing the beautiful gardens
See more room tips
  • Stayed August 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Sam A
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London
Level Contributor
50 reviews
45 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 71 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed December 19, 2012

I have been subscribing to the Lifehouse spa newsletters for a long time and been wanting to stay there for a while. The website looks fantastic and with the very tempting offers you can't really resist. So, on the 15th of October i booked a great deal online which included bed, breakfast and dinner. I followed this up with a phone call the next day (16th of October) in order to book in our dinner in the evening and also to add on a few treatments for myself and my husband.
When phoning on the 16th of October - 2 whole months prior to our stay - i spoke to a girl called Sophie who booked in our dinner for 8pm and also my 4 different treatments. Due to us arriving late on the 16th of December i asked for the treatments to be booked in from around 1pm on the Monday (17th). Sophie said that she would ensure that the treatments got booked in for 1pm or 1:30pm and that i will get our treatment schedules upon arriving on the Sunday evening.

So, we arrive at 7pm on the Sunday to check in and i immediately get told that i have missed my pedicure scheduled for 5:45pm!! I advice reception that i do not have any treatments booked in for the arrival day and i get told that yes i do. I advice that Sophie has organised mine and my husbands treatmenfs for the following day as per my phone call 2 months ago but i get told that treatments can move.. i also get told that check in was 3pm so i should have been able to make the treatment at 5:45 pm.. This is the first time i have even stayed in a hotel and been told that you have to arrive when check in begins :-) i could not believe what i was hearing. I also asked why i had not been contacted in any way to advice me if my treatments had moved.. i was then adviced that the spa don't really do that.. well, i am sorry, you have my email address, my mobile number and my home address on the reservation - plenty of ways to advice a customer - who by the way, called and booked everything 2 months prior to stay and was told all was in hand and i would receive my schedule on arrival... seriously, it is not brain surgery!!!
Reception then says that they will try to rebook our treatments for the next day and somebody will call us. I also get told that we should really be charged £15 each in addition since we will be staying on after check out! Wow, again something i was NOT told about by Sophie.We are then told that we have dinner booked at 7:30pm.. instead of the 8pm i had agreed with Sophie.. funny that! Reception then agreed to change the time to 8pm for us.
OK, all that done we go to our room in the Mulberry wing. Perfectly fine room for 1 night stay but i would struggle to stay longer since there are no drawers to put your clothes away, only a couple of hangers by the door. Slightly disappointed with the toiletries considering it is a spa hotel. Some unknown brand and the dreaded 2-in-1 shampoo /conditioner..urgh. I have stayed in non spa hotels where you get a better selection of toiletries!
We get the promised call from the Spa and they manage to book in my hot stone back/facial/scalp treatment for 9am the following morning and my husbands facial for the same time and they book in my luxury Pedi for 1:15pm and the same time for my husbands 1h20 min personalised massage. We head down for dinner and also then receive the printed schedules which we look at whilst having a drink - we then notice that my husband has got the wrong treatment booked in - instead of a 1h20 min massage it says on the printout that he has a Back, face and scalp treatment 1h25min booked in. I then go to the spa reception to rectify this. After a lenghty talk to the receptionist she manages to change it to the originally booked massage and she prints out a new schedule for my husband. It is kind of interesting how this could have gone wrong in the first place, he already had a facial booked in for 9am - why would he have a "back, face & scalp treatment" which included a facial 4 hours after having had one already?

Anyway, we sit down for dinner finally and no complaints, food was really nice and we enjoyed our dinner.
Breakfast the next morning was a little bit confusing. I had paid an additional £5 per person for the a la carte hot breakfast add on when booking on the website but there were already help yourself scrambled eggs etc on the buffet which any guest could help themselves to. I asked the waitress if there were an a la carte option since we had paid extra and told no. So, not sure why we paid an additional £5 each when it was the same breakfast for all.

Our 9am treatments were great and relaxing. We then went to check out at 11am (in our robes) but reception was full of guests checking out and only one receptionist. We were told that the 2nd receptionist would arrive at 12noon (why would check out then be at 11am if you only have 1 poor girl working?) the staff member who advised us of this then went ahead and said that we could just wait and check out later since we had treatments which was great. We just put our bags in the changing rooms which worked really well.
We then used the spa area and enjoyed the jacuzzi, steam and salt sauna etc.
at 12:45pm we went up to the juice bar and had some freshly squeezed healthy drinks prior to our treaments. My pedicure was really lovely and since my treatment was shorter than my husband's i then waited for him at the juicebar.. Imagine my surprise when he comes out at the same time as me! Turns out that the therapist still had him down for a "back, face & scalp treatment" even after all we went through. She in the end did a 55 min massage but for some reason could not do the the massage for longer - even though what we had booked - personalized massage for 1h20 min is as long as the "back, face & scalp treatment" which is 1h25. She only did 55 min massage.. which we then of course had to go and tell reception so we would not get charged for a longer treatment.. again, un-necessary hassle. We also showed reception the printed "Your Itinerary" where it clearly states that he had a massage booked but she could not explain why it said something different in the computer system..
We checked out shortly afterwards. I spoke to the check out lady and told her that i was disappointed. She asked if i wanted to speak to a duty manager which i declined. I had already told her the story and really did not want to wait and then tell the story again. I have had a couple of missed calls / voicemails from a duty manager but i am not sure what they can say /do to make a difference. I hope that the Operations Director reads this review though and makes some serious changes to how things are run. Reading other Tripadvisor reviews we are not the only ones having been disappointed with our stay. Yes, we got our treatments in the end but the worry and the hassle of it all really put a big shadow over the whole stay.
Food and both my treatments (by Elena i believe) were really good. Just a shame about all the confusion and the way it was handled.

  • Stayed December 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank Malin E
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
New York City, New York
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
1 of 5 bubbles Reviewed December 17, 2012

This sinking ship is suffering from bad reviews, but the captain is nowhere to be seen. Perhaps a rename to the Concordia would suit.

The G.M of a Hotel receiving such reviews would normally reply. The fact that this is not the case speaks volumes.

This review is the first we have ever written, despite working in the hospitality business at a very high level for many years. We have stayed in Hotels all over the world ranging from 5 star luxury costing £1000's a night to B&B's in a third world country costing 20p a night. We have never felt compelled to write a review........until now.

Arrival.

We were a party of four staying in two rooms. We arrived in one car. Yet we all had to fill out a form instead of one per room. Then there was the usual form with the personal details and car details. Add this to a busy checking in time and it becomes cramped and slow.

The guy who showed us to our room was the most professional person we met during our stay.

Rooms.

Ring marks on the bedside table.
Hairs in the sink.
Toilet with very bad stains around the rim. ( been there a long time )
No information about the spa.
Small storage.
One room with biscuits one without.

Bar.

Close the door to the sevice area next to the bar, it looked terrible. Stop dropping lots of bottles at once into the rubbish creating alot of noise.

Communal areas.

The signs inside and outside the building showing directions or non smoking areas are paper and stuck up with blue tack. Since the Hotel was built awhile back you would think proper signage would be in place.

No place for smokers to deposit their butts. This leads to butts everywhere outside garden rooms and bar area with no attempt to clean them up.

Surplus summers furniture piled up outside the area instead of being stored away.

Lost count of the amount of cobwebs in the corridors and dust on the fittings.

You must checkout the olive tree bush that is located just before you walk up the slope to the bar and spa areas. Was it covered in fake snow?....no just alot of white dust.

Breakfast.

Coffee came and was sent back straight away as it was mainly water. We were told that the staff pushed the plunger too quick. This then happened again when the other couple we we with got their coffee. When the waitress bought the coffee she spilt it, but made no attempt to clear up the mess.

Fresh fruit.

Errr....no, tinned or frozen

Cheap sausage, watery scrambled egg and tomatoes not cooked, just left in a hot plate in the hope they will soften.

Tables were slow to be cleared away and the place looked a mess.

Checkout.

I was not asked to check my bill. I took it anyway only to find someone else's drinks bill on it. We were not asked how our stay had been and to cap it all off, half way through checkout housekeeping interrupted the process wanting to know who had checked out.

Now we know some of the above may sound petty for what appears to be a reasonably priced Hotel. The problem is if you combine all of the above it becomes no better than a travelodge.

So back to the Captain......

The staff are not to blame for most of these problems...they completely appear to lack any leadership. No defined roles among staff were apparent, just a bunch of youngsters doing their best with little or no training. Some of the chats we had with these members of staff were incredable.

Oh....and the heating in our room was not working and a plug in radiator was already in there when we arrived. No one even mentioned it.

The couple we were with described the Hotel as a Travelodge with O levels...if that's the case I think they may have to retake their exams as they only got a D+.

  • Stayed December 2012, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank Surfandturf2012
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
HERTS
Level Contributor
25 reviews
18 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 22 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed December 16, 2012 via mobile

Just returned back from a weekend at the spa with my friends and was really impressed! The spa is immaculate, with plenty of space and the treatments divine! Food was amazing quality and the service fantastic. We will be back in the new yer.

Stayed December 2012, traveled with friends
Helpful?
2 Thank cottage37
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Hotels you might also like...
Also consider these accommodations in or near Thorpe le Soken
10.8 mi away
Maison Talbooth
Maison Talbooth
#1 of 3 in Dedham
4.5 of 5 bubbles 285 reviews
18.6 mi away
Prested Hall Hotel
Prested Hall Hotel
#1 of 3 in Feering
4.5 of 5 bubbles 520 reviews
9.4 mi away
Wivenhoe House
Wivenhoe House
#1 of 1 in Wivenhoe
4.5 of 5 bubbles 629 reviews
Show Prices
Show Prices
Show Prices
3.7 mi away
The Kingscliff Hotel
The Kingscliff Hotel
#1 of 1 in Holland-on-Sea
4.0 of 5 bubbles 532 reviews
23.8 mi away
Swan Hotel & Spa Lavenham
16.4 mi away
Stoke by Nayland Hotel, Golf & Spa
Show Prices
Show Prices
Show Prices

Been to Lifehouse Hotel & Spa? Share your experiences!

Write a Review Add Photos & Videos

Additional Information about Lifehouse Hotel & Spa

Property: Lifehouse Hotel & Spa
Address: Frinton Road, Thorpe le Soken CO16 0JD, England
Phone Number:
Location: United Kingdom > England > Essex > Thorpe le Soken
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 1 Hotels in Thorpe le Soken
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:4 star — Lifehouse Hotel & Spa 4*
Number of rooms: 89
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Lifehouse Spa & Hotel, located in Thorpe-le-Soken, Essex, is a contemporary lifestyle spa. Only 80 minutes from London by train and set in 130 acres of grounds, Lifehouse Spa & Hotel will help you revitalise and relax in beautiful surroundings. With a selection of day and residential packages to choose from, guests can indulge in a day of pampering, or truly get away from it all with an overnight stay. With 89 bedrooms, 35 treatment rooms, a gym, exercise studio, swimming pool, sauna & steam room, thermal spa area with salt-inhalation room, relaxation area, manicure and pedicure stations,and 12 acres of listed gardens, you can do as much or as little as you like! ... more   less 
Reservation Options:
TripAdvisor is proud to partner with Expedia, Hotels.com, Travelocity, Hotwire, Priceline, Booking.com, TripOnline SA and HotelQuickly so you can book your Lifehouse Hotel & Spa reservations with confidence. We help millions of travelers each month to find the perfect hotel for both vacation and business trips, always with the best discounts and special offers.
Also Known As:
Lifehouse Country Hotel Thorpe Le Soken
Lifehouse Hotel & Spa Thorpe Le Soken, Essex

Is This Your TripAdvisor Listing?

Own or manage this property? Claim your listing for free to respond to reviews, update your profile and much more.

Claim Your Listing