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“Rather ordinary compared to other HdV's”

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Hotel du Vin Cambridge
Ranked #14 of 36 Hotels in Cambridge
Reviewed November 26, 2013

My wife and I have stayed at several HdV's in the past few years and have always enjoyed our stays - and so we had no doubts when we recommended and booked 2x rooms for the weekend, one for us and the other for my brother and his wife.
The front of house staff were great, very helpful and very professional - as we've come to expect at HdV.
The rooms were nice and well appointed (again as we've come to expect).
Then things became less like the high HdV standards that we've come to expect; the Bar was over crowded and so service was slow. Unusually there was no option of "Prosceco by the glass" - but frankly I could live with that. So I selected the English Sparkling Rose from the wine list, but they didn't have any, so I chose the English Sparkling White, which was very nice.

Dinner was very ordinary (although I was pleased that they held our table for us while my brother was stuck in traffic), and perhaps HdV in general needs to revamp it's thinking around dinner - it's become a bit samey.
The choice of wine on the wine list was generally very/over expensive - but we found a very nice Chablis "hidden away" in the right hand column of the food menu, and had a couple of bottles of that. Very nice! In all, Food at dinner on Friday was ordinary.

We retired back to the Bar which was now even more crowded. I ordered a glass of Chablis and was delivered a glass of Champagne!!

During the night we were all woken at 0140 by the Fire Alarm going off. I suspect that it was someone's idea of a joke, but very disturbing nonetheless, and nothing was mentioned by the staff the next morning - no apology or anything.

The next morning there was absolutely no hot water until about 0930 - again no mention by the staff, no apology, no nothing. I rang reception at 0830 to be told that the Boiler had gone out overnight - Hmmmm!!

We went to breakfast at 0930; it was painfully slow. The speed of service meant that we didn't finish until about 1100. My brothers Salmon and Eggs was cold (why do kitchens insist on adding cold Salmon to warm eggs??) We never did receive the extra toast that we'd asked for. We had to ask for more tea and coffee, we had to ask for our plates to be cleared so that we had room for the non-appearing toast.

We ate out on the Saturday night, and the front of house were again very helpful giving directions and arranging a Taxi for us.

When we returned there was still no Rose English Sparkling - so again we made do with the White =0)

At Sunday breakfast (after a hot shower) at our table it was volunteered to us that the service would be better than on the Saturday - a nice touch seeing as we hadn't actually complained on Saturday - it was supposed to be a relaxing break so on Saturday we chose to sit and watch rather than get stressed.
Unfortunately on Sunday breakfast service wasn't much better. It was still v slow, again we didn't receive the extra toast that we were offered, again we had to ask for extra tea and coffee ......
On the up side, my "full English" was very nice.

After breakfast again the front of house people were great, looked after our bags while we went out for last-minute shopping. They sorted out the complexities of sharing the payment of two bills equally across two rooms and associated bar/food bills, and they got our cars delivered to the front for us when we wanted to leave.

In essence; front of house 9 out of 10. Dinner 6 out of 10. Bar 7 out of 10. Breakfast experience 5 out of 10 at best (caveat: vg full English).

Altogether just a bit too close to "ordinary" when compared to our previous HdV experiences; Winchester, Tunbridge Wells, Poole, Bristol, Brighton, Henley on Thames ...

It'll make us think twice next time, which is a disappointment.

  • Stayed: November 2013, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank Les O
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Douglas Y, General Manager at Hotel du Vin Cambridge, responded to this reviewResponded December 3, 2013

Dear Sir,

Thank you for taking the time to post a review of your recent stay with us. First I must thank you for your comments regarding our front of house team and how they were able to help during your stay, I shall be sure to share these with the team.

I am disappointed that breakfast during your stay was not of the standard we hope to offer, and I am working closely with the bistro team to ensure that these service standards are addressed immediately. Whilst it is unfortunate that the fire alarm went off during the night I understand the nights team worked quickly to investigate and resolve this efficiently, but I can only apologise that this was not discussed with you the following morning.

I would like to assure you that your comments have been taken very seriously and we are working hard to put in place systems to improve the service we are offering to our guests, it is only by receiving such feedback that we can hope to improve upon this.

Once again thank you for your review and I do hope that you will be able to consider us in the future, if you would like to discuss your recent experience with me further then please do contact me directly at douglas.yiend@hotelduvin.com

With Kind Regards

Douglas Yiend
General Manager

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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558 - 564 of 922 reviews

Reviewed November 24, 2013

You expect to pay top money for a good brand, but you also expect a better than average experience. I booked this for business on the last minuet so I expected to pay top dollar, however my room was very small, very drab and the bath situated in the bedroom made the room smell. Not a great experience for £239.00 incl breakfast.

  • Stayed: November 2013, traveled on business
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1  Thank Jacksprat100
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Douglas Y, General Manager at Hotel du Vin Cambridge, responded to this reviewResponded December 3, 2013

Dear Sir,

Thank you for your review. I can only apologise that you found the room disappointing, clearly the bath in the room should not affect the overall ambience and for this I am sorry, we do offer bedrooms that have the bath separately and this would not be a problem for us to arrange if you do choose to visit us again.

I can assure you we haven taken your feedback seriously and do hope that we may see you at the hotel again in the future. Please do contact me directly next time you are looking to stay in Cambridge so that I can help to arrange a more suitable room for your needs.

With Kind Regards

Douglas Yiend
General Manager
douglas.yiend@hotelduvin.com

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 22, 2013

Booked the Wolf Blass room as wife particularly liked the twin baths in the room - a real feature. Big room, at the back of hotel so very quiet. Vast bed - could get 3 or 4 wives in there (?!) :) Excellent toiletries (she nabbed them all), nice drench shower.
On the downside, to me it's the smaller things & attention to detail that make a difference between 'good' and 'excellent'. Ie, the room is overlooked by what looks like a science block, but there are no net curtains. Hence if you want to bath during daylight you need to close the curtains. As the room is decorated with black wallpaper this makes for a very dark experience. Unless you want to give the science grads a show, of course!
But the thing that drove me utterly, bonkersly insane was the stupid little coffee machine in the room - one of those horrid nespresso george clooney things. After finally working out how to use it (I'm not very good with these things!) I finally ended up with the stupidest, smallest, most pathetic cup of coffee in Christendom. It made a thimbleful of coffee look like a lake. Less than half a mouthful. FFS. There's a kettle in the room - why not leave a few sachets of Gold Blend like normal hotels? Couldn't be bothered with room service so just threw a strop instead. I was fuming. Small things - badly done - really no need for it in a £325 per night room!!!!!

Room Tip: Take a jar of coffee with you!!!!
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  • Stayed: November 2013, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank David S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Douglas Y, General Manager at Hotel du Vin Cambridge, responded to this reviewResponded December 3, 2013

Dear Sir,

Thank you for your review of the hotel. I appreciate you taking the time to write regarding your recent experience and I am sorry that you felt some of the details in the room did not meet your expectations. Being situated in the town centre does mean that buildings are surrounding us and, whilst I believe the science block is more interested in their experiments than in the goings on in our bedrooms I agree that the fitting of lighter drapes to obscure the windows would be a suitable addition in this room. I am disapointed that you did not enjoy the coffee machine in the room, we feel that this is a added bonus in the rooms, but clearly a thimblefull of coffee is not our intention, if you had contacted to room service we would have been happy to arrange for alternative coffee to be sent to your room but I understand your frustration that this was not easily available.

Thank you once again for taking the time to post a review on trip advisor and I shall be looking into the concerns you have raised.

Regards

Douglas Yiend
General Manager

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 18, 2013 via mobile

I stayed at this hotel because I was attending a surprise birthday party at Browns which is about 100m away.

I stayed for one night in a smart, although small room. Heating control was a bit hit and miss unfortunately.

A couple of drinks from the mini bar and valet parking and my bill, without breakfast, was over £240. Nice hotel
but overpriced.

Stayed: November 2013, traveled on business
1  Thank Grazie1000
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 17, 2013

Avoid the Tatinger room! It's right next to a very noisy extractor fan unit from the restaurant and will keep you awake for most of the night. I'm told the Louis Jadot room has the same problem and I imagine there may be more.

We mentioned this during checkout. The receptions staff clearly knew what we were talking about but were reluctant to discuss it any further. We paid 245 GBP / 300 Euro and for that kind of money I expect a more professional approach for dealing with unsatisfied customers.

The room itself was small, but clean. The staff was otherwise friendly and helpful. We will be visiting Cambridge on a regular basis and would consider this hotel again if the staff would have given us any indication that this problem could be avoided in the future.

Room Tip: Avoid Tatinger and Louis Jadot (extractor fan noise).
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  • Stayed: November 2013, traveled as a couple
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2  Thank Bart M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 17, 2013

Stayed as a part of a group of 4 to visit Cambridge for the weekend. We arived mid morning on the Saturday and from the out set nothing was to much trouble for the staff. The staff stored our bags and took our car as we had booked valet parking; infact one room was ready on our arrival. We headed into Cambridge to take one of the walking tours from the tourist information office. On out return to the hotel our bags were in our room. The room was nicely decorated with an excellent bathroom. Having gone out for a meal to Cote Brasserie we returned for a drink in the cellar bar. What a gem of a bar and a lovelysetting with comfortable sofas and the staff keen to help us with our requests. After a great sleep on the comfortable beds we arose for a late breakfast. We had contiential breakfast booked with the room and decided to upgrade to the full breakfast menu; again the staff were very helpful, efficient and friendly, Having booked out we left our bags with the hotel staff and headed out to explore more of the delights that Cambridge has to offer including a guided punt on the River Cam. On our return our cars were brought back to the hotel and our bags loaded for us. This was an excellent weekend stay. The hotel staff were helpful, friendly and could not have done more to make stay any better than it was. The hotel was close to all of the attractions of central Cambridge so it made an ideal base. This was our second visit and will definitely be back again.

  • Stayed: November 2013, traveled with friends
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Thank PJP100
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 9, 2013

This hotel and restaurant are chic and ideally located. Sadly, the room I stayed in was at the front of the hotel and therefore the noise from the street was a BIG problem both late at night and early in the morning. If you are staying there I would recommend a room on the garden side of the hotel, especially if it is a Thursday, as the bottle bins are emptied very early on Friday morning. I usually can sleep through pretty much anything, but two bottle bins being emptied right outside your window.....!
The food and wine in the restaurant is excellent and the service in the hotel is also good.
Would I return? I am not sure; sadly it was a lot of money for very little sleep.

Room Tip: Pick a room garden side, the street side is very noisy
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  • Stayed: November 2013, traveled on business
    • Value
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1  Thank Charlotte999999
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Douglas Y, General Manager at Hotel du Vin Cambridge, responded to this reviewResponded November 19, 2013

Dear Guest

Thank you for your review. First I must apologise for the noise that disturbed you. Whilst it is necessary for our bottle bins to be emptied, this should not be done at such an early time and I am speaking with our waste company to establish why this was done so early during your stay.

Thank you for your comments regarding the rest of the hotel and I hope that these aspects can persuade you to stay with us again, please ensure you contact the hotel directly and we can arrange a more suitable room towards to rear of the hotel.

I hope we shall see you at the hotel again in the future.

Regards

Douglas Yiend
General Manager

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Hotel du Vin Cambridge

Address: Trumpington Street, Cambridge, England
Location: United Kingdom > England > Cambridgeshire > Cambridge
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Suites Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #14 of 36 Hotels in Cambridge
Price Range: $191 - $382 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4 star — Hotel du Vin Cambridge 4*
Number of rooms: 41
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
This beautiful hotel in Cambridge city centre was a former University-owned building on Trumpington Street which has been transformed to enhance its many quirky architectural features.Forty one bedrooms and suites, some with private terraces, have been carved out of the former University-owned building, alongside our trademark bistro with the first Hotel du Vin open-style kitchen and curiously labyrinthine cellar bar. Dating back in part to medieval times, Hotel du Vin Cambridge boasts a cosy library, private events room perfect for special occasions, meetings and events. The bistro and bar are available for residents, locals and visitors alike at Hotel du Vin & Bistro Cambridge. ... more   less 
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