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“Don't expect to be impressed”
3 of 5 bubbles Review of Headley Park Hotel

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Headley Park Hotel
Ranked #1 of 1 Hotels in Sleaford
Farnham, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
7 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
“Don't expect to be impressed”
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed June 16, 2014

We too went here as the result of a Groupon voucher for afternoon tea and B & B. On arrival my expectations were momentarily lifted as the grounds looked very nice, however, on seeing the outside of the Hotel I reevaluated by expectations downwards - flaking paint on window frames, some sort of breeze-block barbeque in the corner of the building that looked unsightly and just a run-down feeling about the place. As no-one was present at the reception desk I hit the bell on the counter rather too violently and a very pleasant receptionist arrived, clearly used to being called in this way ! She gave us a very warm welcome to her credit and directed us to our room. We were in room 4 overlooking the grounds. Outside our room in the corridor We noted what looked like a folding bed pushed behind a spiral staircase which had black & yellow tape across it to prevent access, but it looked unsightly and thoughtless. In our room I noticed a balcony outside but also dozens of cigarette butt-ends that previous occupants had obviously lobbed out of the windows. Why have they never been cleared up ?
The bed had no mattress cover which made us slightly queezy and the decor looked tired and dated. The bedroom curtains were 6" too short, the shower curtain needed bleaching and there were tiles in the bathroom that needed re-grouting (or does that black mould offer a rustic charm ?) The afternoon tea was ok although my pot of tea was insipid despite squeezing the life out of the teabag inside. We decided to eat out in the evening so drove out to Alton for a very nice curry. In the morning we enjoyed a nice "full English" breakfast although it would be nice if perhaps fresh fruit, plain yoghurt & muesli could also be offered as an option instead of just packets of Special K, Cornflakes & Co Co Pops.
In view of the Hotels Lithuanian links they are missing an opportunity to capitalize on this - why not offer Lithuanian menus as an interesting alternative ? This is a Hotel that could be so much better and as previous reviews have mentioned it just needs some cash injection, TLC and training to turn it into something that could be quite special.

  • Stayed June 2014, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank MarkJBK
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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118 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
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Rating summary
  • Location
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    3.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    3 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    3.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    3.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    3 of 5 bubbles
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (27)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Italian first
  • Any
English first
Isle of Wight, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
11 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
2 of 5 bubbles Reviewed June 15, 2014

Like other reviewers we stayed as a Groupon offer which was brought for my husbands birthday, two nights stay with afternoon tea and breakfast, all started before we arrived, I booked well in advance via email and received a confirmation email back no problem, on the Thursday before we were travelling on the Friday I phoned the hotel to ask if there was a cut off point with the afternoon tea as we were not 100% sure what time we would be arriving to find that they couldn't find my reservation, they took my number and said they would call me back and to be fair they did and said that it was all sorted and a room reserved for us. On our arrival we were met by a lady who told us that they had two events in the marquee over the weekend, but hopefully we wouldn't be disturbed too much. She checked us in and then showed us to our room which was up two flights of stairs, room 9. First impressions of the room was okay, then it became obvious that we were in a single room which they had changed the bed to a double, unfortunately they didn't change other things in the room like only 1 tea cup and supplies, one set of towels. The room itself wasn't bad though and for how much we were going to be in it was okay, flat screen freeview tv on the wall, decent size ensuite bathroom but shower cubicle small nowhere to put anything. Room 9 is on the rear of the building so overlooks the woods, with a lane below which a few times whilst we were in the room cars drove up and down very quickly. The other noise that was heard that kicked in around 8am was just under the window was some sort of extractor fan and extremely noisy with the window open and could still be heard with window shut. We went down for our afternoon tea which was going to be served in the bar, because of the wedding that was going to be on, we were waiting around 10 minutes before a lady who we presumed was the manageress said she would sort some tea or coffee for us, we stood waiting a little longer then another lady said she would deal with our order and to take a seat, in the meantime there were a lot of staff coming in and out obviously to do with the wedding. Around 10-15 minutes later we were brought a cake stand with an assortment of sandwiches and cakes on, which all in all even though the cakes were obviously shop brought were quite nice. After our tea we decided to take a walk and watched two hot air balloons being inflated and flying off which apparently one of the first time it had been done from there, but nothing to do with the hotel. We had a walk in the grounds, which houses a very large fishing lake, there seemed to be certain areas where barbecue charcoal had been dumped for some unknown reason. As the hotel is in the middle of nowhere, unless you travel there is not a lot to do here. We had a couple of drinks later in the bar but because of the wedding that was on service was slow and eventually we turned in, we were told if we wanted we could take drinks and food up to our room which we decided against.
The next morning we were first down for breakfast at 8am, unfortunately it wasn't ready and told to take a seat and they would bring tea to us, I had to change my tea cup as it was still dirty, in the meantime a man was setting the breakfast trays up which had small burners under to keep the food hot, we were then apologised for the delay and told someone had stood in to cook the food as the chef had not turned up, obviously because of the wedding the evening before., this then turned into slight panic as one of the burners set fire to one tray with eggs in and smoked the room out. Eventually we helped ourself to breakfast which did turn out to be very good with scrambled eggs, baked beans, sausages, bacon, tomatoes, mushrooms. Unfortunately they had run out of bread so someone had gone out to get some. Chaos over we decided to go out for the day to the nearest local town which was Farnham. On our return on Saturday evening we found an extra set of towels but no extras for the tea, sugar and milk. Not a great problem as we always take our own supplies including mugs and milk as hotels never give enough. We decided to eat in the bar and had sandwiches and shared a bowl of chips, quite pricy but nice. This evening event was a Romanian christening, loud and noisy through to around 3am, it turned out that as well some of the staff were having there own little party in the bar so this was the noise that we could hear, eventually managed to drop off to sleep despite people coming up to there rooms talking, shouting, laughing with no consideration for other guests, this did lead to some moans at breakfast on sunday morning. This morning the chef had come in and breakfast served we helped ourselves but must admit I was very disappointed, only white bread for toast, and not half as nice as the previous breakfast. The manageress came around to see if we were okay and had a chat which was nice but comments about the previous evenings event and saying 'well at least no one was stabbed this time' didn't do much good to convince me that I would return here. it also turned out that they had recently held a music festival with around 3000 people attending, they obviously earn more money on the marquee events than paying guests staying in the hotel, it also turned out from comments by two or three members of staff that they hadn't been paid and also at least two of them were leaving with another had handed his notice in. The building itself even though old is charming and would have liked to know more of its history, perhaps a booklet in the rooms would be nice. Summing up, if you are going to stay here make sure there are no events on in the marquee.

Room Tip: Avoid 9, this is only a single room which will be passed off as a double.
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  • Stayed May 2014, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank wightone
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Travelers are raving about these Sleaford hotels

Rochester, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
605 reviews
78 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 306 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed June 11, 2014

Had a Groupon voucher for Headley Park Hotel in Bordon near Guildford. It was a big old house, owned by Lithuanians and for a long time was a sort of home for expats fleeing communism. Very nice setting. Small dining room, with a very pleasant waitress, who doubled as hotel receptionist.

Had a two course deal (with portions like that we didn’t want sweet). I had vegetable soup and pork belly; my wife had garlic mushrooms and liver and bacon. After the meal had a pleasant walk down to the lake.

Downside - the housekeeping - there was a lot of dust about on the furniture, tables etc - What are the kitchens like?

  • Stayed June 2014, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Incartek
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level Contributor
7 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
1 of 5 bubbles Reviewed June 3, 2014 via mobile

My wife and I booked a Groupon offer here without checking the reviews first.

Arrived for afternoon tea and it was clear the staff have no formal training. Ignored us in reception for 15 minutes. Afternoon tea then served - no cutlery or serviettes. Bar staff used fingers to drop a slice of lemon in my wife's G&T!

Hotel room adequate but very run down. Toilet flush broken and blood on toilet roll holder.

Romanian christening at hotel went on until 3.30am with guests shouting in the grounds and extremely loud music until this time. We complained about the noise at breakfast the next morning, only to be told by the manageress that it was a relief nobody had been stabbed this time!

Breakfast was OK, although only half cutlery at the table again so had to stir out coffee (which was cold) with a knife!

Please do your research before booking here. Completely ruined out night away!

Stayed June 2014, traveled as a couple
Helpful?
3 Thank Lee G
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed June 2, 2014

Had a training course here last week. Found the food to be great, the locals and staff gave us a night to be remembered. The hotel is still in the process of being updated but is so quirky. If you're not looking for luxury but a fun night away, do go.

Room Tip: Apparently the left of the main entrance has been updated but I stayed on the right of the bar and i...
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  • Stayed May 2014, traveled on business
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Frizziefire
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level Contributor
9 reviews
9 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed June 1, 2014

We stayed here on a groupon offer and found it perfectly acceptable for the price we paid. The afternoon tea was a little bit disappointing and I think the chocolate ecclair had given up on life the previous week but we were hungry and ate it anyway!
The staff seem a little inexperienced and some training would make such a difference, they seem so unsure of everything.
The room itself was large with a lovely modern bathroom and beautiful views if the lake. The decor was tired and it wasn't spotlessly clean but it was acceptable and that was fine for us.
The building is lovely and I get the feeling this place could be something special with some funds and love injected into it. We would stay again on a groupon offer but maybe not at full price.

Room Tip: Room 3 had a great view and is very large.
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  • Stayed June 2014, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Michbrooker
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
2 of 5 bubbles Reviewed June 1, 2014

We booked an afternoon tea for 3 at the this hotel, what we were given was a shoddy excuse for an afternoon tea.
After booking our reservation two weeks previously, we arrived to be greeted by a receptionist with a giant chip on her shoulder. She could find no record of our booking and would have been happy for us to walk away. Maybe using a better system than an notebook may have helped them to keep track of their bookings better. No offer was made to accommodate us, and no apology was given. We had to ask the receptionist to find out what had happened, and she shrugged and said "I don't know if there is enough for you".
She eventually came back and told us to find a seat, rolled her eyes and asked "Tea or coffee?" We sat out to enjoy the weather and the grounds looked lovely, but the cigarette butts covering the floor were disgusting.
Our afternoon tea was served, and it looked like something my 4 year old had made. Cakes were clearly bought from a supermarket, the cream for the scones was frozen and the sandwiches looked like they had been thrown together by someone wearing a blindfold.
The only plus point to this was our waiter, who was polite, helpful and regularly checked to see if there was anything else he could do to help us.
I wouldn't recommend this place to anyone.

  • Stayed June 2014
    • Location
    • Cleanliness
Helpful?
2 Thank ellezbellz
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Headley Park Hotel

Property: Headley Park Hotel
Address: Picketts Hill, Sleaford GU35 8TE, England
Location: United Kingdom > England > Hampshire > Sleaford
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Restaurant
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 1 Hotels in Sleaford
Number of rooms: 18

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