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“Faultless”
Review of Poets House

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Poets House
Ranked #1 of 5 Hotels in Ely
Certificate of Excellence
Cambridge, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
17 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
“Faultless”
Reviewed February 10, 2014 via mobile

Went to poets house Saturday and had a meal there for the first time. We had a table for 19 and every meal served was faultless. I had pigeon for a starter and beef for main and the taste and cooking was better than any thing else I have eaten in Ely by a country mile. But what put the cherry on the cake was the exceptional service. This place is a really good place to go for a special treat. Wow!!!

Stayed February 2014, traveled with friends
Helpful?
Thank Marcus H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Oliver T, General Manager at Poets House, responded to this review, February 17, 2014
Dear Marcus H,

Thank you for the kind words in your recent review. Your comments will be passed on to both the front of house and kitchen teams who will be really pleased to hear of your visit.

I assume you joined us in one of our private dining rooms which are both really nicely set up for groups of this size. Although 'The Dining Room' offers a lovely dining environment, we can really ensure a personalised and exclusive experience in our 'Boardroom' or 'Writing Room.'

We'll hope you don't just reserve us for special occasions and that we can welcome you again on a trip over from Cambridge soon.

Kind regards,

Oliver
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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589 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
  • Sleep Quality
  • Rooms
  • Service
  • Value
  • Cleanliness
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (137)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • Any
English first
Cambridgeshire, UK
Level Contributor
30 reviews
20 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 60 helpful votes
Reviewed February 8, 2014

The overall ambience and decor of this place is fantastic. Definitely the best in the area.
We started with drinks in the bar. Service here and in the main restaurant is exceptional.
Our meal began well and raised my expectations. Lovely fresh bread and delicious starters. Then our mains arrived: I was very disappointed with my steak. It was under seasoned and the accompanying bearnaise was bland. The meat was quite chewy and didn't have the depth of flavour I would have expected of a rib eye cut. Given the presentation of the rest of the meal, I would have expected fat to have been trimmed off before serving. On a positive note, the accompanying chips were perfect: crispy and delicious. Overall: this mains were very disappointing. We opted not to have dessert. We did had coffee with petit fours (Ok but I would have liked some chocolate here!)
Overall: stunning environment, great service, some good food, but for a fine dining restaurant, I was disappointed with the quality of the main course. If Poets House can sort this out, they will have an excellent restaurant. There are some very good places to eat in Ely, including The Old Fire Engine House across the road, but none of them can match the standard of decor and service.

  • Stayed February 2014, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank JMcB2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Oliver T, General Manager at Poets House, responded to this review, February 17, 2014
Dear JMcB2,

Thank you for taking the time to detail your recent visit to us.

Given the majority of your meal was so enjoyable it is really disappointing to hear that the quality of your steak let the experience down. This is highly unusual and we will be monitoring feedback to ensure this was a one off. Obviously the rib-eye cut of meat is fatty by nature but assuming this is cooked to a medium rare level, the fat should melt and add tenderness and flavour to the meat.

We'll hope we have the opportunity to convince you of the standard of our usual main course offering on a future visit and thanks again for your comments.

Kind regards,

Oliver
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Newcastle upon Tyne, England, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
36 reviews
15 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 32 helpful votes
Reviewed February 5, 2014

We fund that the poets House was idealy located to see the sights of Ely. The staff were very friendly and attentive in every way. Food was excellent, room's were of a very high standard, room service was provided on time and always met expectations. The hotel also catered for individual request regarding check out times and parking arrangements. Most probably the best hotel we have stayed in that area. Would highly recommend to friends and family. We look forweard to going back in the future.

Room Tip: All rooms equally good.
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  • Stayed February 2014, traveled on business
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Heather S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Oliver T, General Manager at Poets House, responded to this review, February 17, 2014
Dear Heather S,

Thank your for your kind review. You obviously visit the area a great deal and it's really pleasing to hear you think so highly of us.

We'll very much look forward to welcoming you again in the not too distant future.

Kind regards,

Oliver
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Ely
Level Contributor
130 reviews
20 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 103 helpful votes
Reviewed January 28, 2014

We have visited the Poets House several times since its opening weekend when we were struck by the comparative quality of the environment compared to anything else this side of Cambridge. We have eaten in both the Study and the main restaurant and on each occasion the food has been well cooked and of good quality with the highlight being an excellent Boxing Day brunch. Our most recent visit was taking our 90 year old grandmother for a celebratory birthday afternoon tea. The Study is the perfect spot for drinks or tea with that indefinable atmospheric buzz that gives all the best venues a lift.
Tea was promptly served and contained a wonderful array of beautifully fresh sandwiches and highly original cakes – sublime white chocolate and lavender éclairs, intense raspberry and passion fruit macaroons, mini strawberry tarts and perhaps the highlight chocolate and pistachio opera cake. Also served were light and fresh scones with butter and jam – “sorry we have had a problem with our supplier and have no cream “. I could have walked to Waitrose in 10 minutes and picked up some clotted cream myself had I known; if you are serving tea you have to have the fundamentals. This has been a continuing theme with the Poets House, 95% is done exceptionally well but there has always been a detail that has let them down at the final hurdle. In previous visits it has been the random behaviour of staff, unavailability of menu items or wine and mistaken orders. The staffing issue seems well resolved with the recruitment of several patently experienced team members seemingly well versed in serving in decent establishments, mixed with enthusiastic and polite younger staff.
We paid the bill and received a January four eat for the price of three tea offer which made the experience good value.
Come on Poets House you have the potential to be truly outstanding but the details are so important at this level and consistency of delivery is a must. Of course we will be back and hope to report next time on a truly faultless experience.

  • Stayed January 2014, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Jason G
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
David T, Owner at Poets House, responded to this review, January 29, 2014
Dear Jason G
Thank you for your review of Poets House and your feedback regarding your experience. First of all please do accept our apologies for the lack of cream on your recent visit, I am at present discussing the matter with those involved to try and understand both the cream being absent and the inability to offer you something in its place.
The points you make about it almost being ‘nearly perfect’ are much appreciated and I am so pleased that you recognise the growth within the business and the teams delivery. The property Is now 8 months old and the team are now experienced within their roles and equipped to deal with elements of service recovery when needed, sadly this was not the case in your experience which slightly impairs my explanation to you.
Please be assured that this point has been addressed and I do hope on your next visit you will see a true reflection of the hard work that has gone into the delivery and demonstrated in the bulk of other reviewers.
Whilst ‘nearly perfect’ is a great review we do strive for perfection and feedback such as yours will certainly help us achieve that.
Thank you again for your review Jason, if returning to the hotel please do feel free to contact me directly and I will be happy to take care of your arrangements and maybe meet you in person.
Best regards,
David
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Cambridge, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
88 reviews
20 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 27 helpful votes
Reviewed January 26, 2014

Being Ely residents, we've tried to get in here for a while, but always book too late. So a warning there that you do need to book in good time - especially for a Saturday night.
The four of us arrived in good time and were taken through to the bar for some drinks. The menus soon followed and after 10 minutes of studying we were taken to our table.

We just happened to go on a night when they were serving a Burns Night Supper. This was my choice and it was superb! For a start the value was excellent. £25 for four courses. Every one of them was excellent. The pre starter had a tiny haggis which was divine, just not enough of it!
The others in the group went for other items, two being the steaks. To be honest, they were a little disappointing. The price was top notch so expectations were high and they didn't quite match the expectations.
What is really, really good is the service. We were looked after very well indeed. The staff know all about the food and the wines. They were also exactly attentive i.e. there when you needed them, but not asking if everything was okay every ten minutes.

£230 for four people which is not so bad for everything.

We shall return.

  • Stayed January 2014, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Tom_JackAttack
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
David T, Owner at Poets House, responded to this review, January 27, 2014
Dear Tom_JackAttack
Thank you for your review of your Burns Night dining experience at Poets House and your great feedback. I was sorry to read of your disappointment with the steaks on the night and any feedback here would be welcome.
Thank you also for your appreciation of the haggis ‘pre starter’ these were given to all our diners as a nod to the Burns tradition. Your comments regarding service have been shared with the team and are much appreciated.
We will look forward to welcoming you back to Poets House in the future but in the interim again will thank you for sharing your experience in such a positive way.
Best regards,

David
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level Contributor
4 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
Reviewed January 25, 2014 via mobile

We live in ely and my husband has really been looking forward to going to Poets House since it opened. I've been before and enjoyed slow service but delicious cocktails! So we arrived at 7.15 tonight, a Saturday, to enjoy a cocktail before going elsewhere to eat. Greeted at the door by a waiter who asked what we wanted. Explained, were left waiting at the door while he went to check if "they can fit you in". Came back to be told they couldn't! We only wanted a drink! The bar was busy but there was clearly room, we would have been happy to stand if we had been given the option. Disappointing and cold reception, won't hurry back.....

Stayed January 2014, traveled as a couple
Helpful?
5 Thank AliShep77
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
David T, Owner at Poets House, responded to this review, January 29, 2014
Dear Alishep77
Thank you for your review. The matter has been immediately addressed with the team at Poets House who join me in this apology to you.
The team have been working hard on the arrival and overall experience especially at times of high volume and part of this has been to offer a seating welcome and table service to all our guests and am sorry that the way in which this was relayed to you was not as it was meant to be.
I do hope you do manage to get back into Poets House and if doing so please do feel free to contact me directly at David@thehousecollection.com and I would be happy to personally make arrangements and a small amends for your recent attempt at joining us on your evening out.
Best regards,
David
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Cambs
Level Contributor
8 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
Reviewed January 23, 2014 via mobile

We have just visited Poets House for afternoon tea and it was utterly excellent. I am really impressed. The service was friendly and complete. The afternoon tea was wonderful. Lovely selection of sandwiches, both plain and fruit scones and 5, yes 5, delicious cakes each to enjoy. A generous platter of treats and unfortunately we could not finish them all, but the waiter offered to box these us for us to take home. As an Ely resident it was a real treat and a bit special. Only suggestion I can provide is that the tea was English Breakfast which is normally quite strong, but this was not very strong - I love a really strong cuppa. I should have asked though, as the staff were very accommodating and I'm sure would have helped.

Stayed January 2014, traveled with friends
Helpful?
Thank LAusterfield
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
David T, Owner at Poets House, responded to this review, January 27, 2014
Dear LAusterfield
Thank you for your review and great feedback for our afternoon tea. I am delighted that you enjoyed your visit and that you were able to take the ‘spare’ cakes home. Your point with regard to the tea has been shared with the team and thank you feeding that back.
We hope you will be back with us again to enjoy Poets House, in the interim thank you again for taking the time to review us.
Best regards,

David
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Poets House

Property: Poets House
Address: St Marys Street, Ely CB7 4EY, England
Location: United Kingdom > England > Cambridgeshire > Ely
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Suites Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 5 Hotels in Ely
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$
Hotel Class:4 star — Poets House 4*
Number of rooms: 21
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Located in the heart of Ely’s historic city centre, Poets House commands superb views of the magnificent Cathedral, and having undergone a sensitive, design-led transformation is set to become one of the city’s premier Hotel, Restaurant and Event destinations.You can enjoy breakfast, lunch or dinner in The Dining Room, an elegant space where you’ll enjoy the perfect combination of a warm and friendly welcome, top-class service and traditional dishes served with a twist. Alternatively, The Study, overlooking the tranquil courtyard garden, is the perfect venue in which to enjoy an expertly-mixed cocktail, an informal platter, or an indulgent afternoon tea. If you want to stay over, each of our 21 guest-rooms consists of a spacious suite, in which period features and restful views blend seamlessly with the latest technology, elegant free-standing Copper baths and the last word in luxury beds. Whether you’re planning to stay, want to book a meal, or would just like to know more, we’re here to give you all the help you need and look forward to talking to you soon. ... more   less 
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