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“Overpriced hotel with a clear lack of customer service by staff!”
Review of Oddfellows

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Oddfellows
Ranked #6 of 44 Hotels in Chester
Certificate of Excellence
London, United Kingdom
1 review
“Overpriced hotel with a clear lack of customer service by staff!”
Reviewed August 29, 2012

I just spent two nights at Oddfellows Chester whilst visiting friends, after reading all the comments on trip advisor I felt compelled to write on here as it seems that management at Oddfellows haven't learnt by their mistakes! On check in the staff were really unhelpful and didn't give us any information about the hotel, i.e. breakfast options if any, the front door being locked at what time etc so we had to find this out for ourselves! Also on check in they wanted to pre authorise a enormous amount of money, I expect a credit card to be taken at most hotels but not a preauthorisation of nearly £500 for two nights, I refused and then just had to pay up front for the room charges.

We stayed in a classic double, it's very well decorated like most of the hotel, but very snug and the beds are too small for two large adults, the bathroom doesn't have a separate door, it's a shared shower door and bathroom door, which is a good space saving idea but slightly uncomfortable in terms of privacy and hygiene in my opinion. The air conditioning was rubbish making it extremely hot in the room, this for me was the worse issue, as it prevented me from sleeping along with the soft mattress dipping in the middle massively. We had been travelling all week so had a lot of baggage and there is no lift or on hand help with bags so we had to also do this all ourselves. In all I thought this hotel was over priced, they seemed to have spent all their money on furnishings and decoration instead of staff training and fundamentals like comfort for your guest are out the window, I wouldn't recommend this hotel to others there are better options for the same price in Chester.

Stayed August 2012
Helpful?
Thank Lucinda P
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (160)
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mancheaster england
Level 1 Contributor
4 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
Reviewed August 21, 2012

No information given wene checking in,which meant we got locked out of the hotel at 10.30.after continually pressing the door bell for 10 minuets one of the bar staff let us in.
There was no apology ,and they looked at us as if it were our fault.
No breakfast was delivered to our room as ordered, and then wene we mentioned this to reception again no apology , we were handed a paper bag with a banana and a very small pastry.This is not what we expected from a 5 star hotel.
We had a terrible night sleep,the air conditioning in the room was very poor,and we had already been moved once,as the air con didn't work in the first room.
I also found it very strange that they asked to take £150 off my credit card for any breakages.This was a first for me, after staying in many hotels over the years I can't recall ever being asked this before.
On checking out we were not even asked the question, how was your stay.
All in all a disappointment ,and unfortunately would not choose to stay here again.
Great location though.

Room Tip: Loft rooms are far to stuffy.
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  • Stayed August 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Teresa396
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Sarah D, Guest Relations Manager at Oddfellows, responded to this review, August 25, 2012
Dear Teresa
Thank you for your comments. I would like to discuss your stay further, if you could please contact me on 01244 895700 I would be gratful. I look forward to hearing from you.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Toulouse, France
Level 3 Contributor
16 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
Reviewed August 21, 2012

A friend and I booked a room for 2 nights at Oddfellows as a girls shopping treat, mainly using it just as a base to come and drop bags off at between shopping jaunts, however as we loved the room and hotel so much we spent both mornings lazing around instead of spending money. The quirkiness of the secret garden, decor of the bar, wallpaper in the rooms and style overall had us enthralled. The hotel kindly upgraded us to a duplex suite that was magnificent and there was help by staff to bring bags up to the room as there wasn't a lift in our part of the hotel. The breakfast bag in the morning was welcomed and although we didn't eat in the restaurant, the food coming out of the kitchen all looked wonderful. 
If you have an opportunity to stay in this hotel, take it!

Room Tip: We were in room 16 and it was gorgeous.
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  • Stayed August 2012, traveled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank KarenVeilhes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Sarah D, Guest Relations Manager at Oddfellows, responded to this review, August 25, 2012
We are really pleased that you enjoyed your visit. We hope to welcome you again, in the not too distant future.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Aylesbury, United Kingdom
Level 6 Contributor
136 reviews
46 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 85 helpful votes
Reviewed August 18, 2012

I will start off with the good stuff, since to be fair, there are a lot of fantastic things to be said about this venue, and I feel gutted that due to a clear lack of simple staff training, the easy resolution that could have made this stay a 4 out of 5 rather than 1 out of 5.

I went here for a wedding reception and the food was a delight, and for a central city 5* venue, decent champagne at £60/bottle was fairly reasonable, especially compared to London. The outdoor terraces are gorgeous, and with sunny weather as we had, the setting was perfect, and the bar and serving staff were very friendly indeed. We were staying in one of the original rooms in the main building, and while they can be noisy as they are directly above the function rooms, the style of this boutique hotel is not in question - the design is quirky & fashionable and the bedrooms were beautiful, with a stunning bathroom and gorgeous bed, with lovely pillows - free wi-fi and a nice flatscreen TV as well as a swanky Nespresso machine all help the ambience and add to the sophistication of the rooms.

Next morning, had a breakfast in the garden room/restaurant, and it was certainly delicious - definitely 5* and the perfect start to my day.

Or at least, that should have been the perfect conclusion to my stay.

Now bear in mind the cost of a room is often in excess of £200/night, and we were fortunate as part of the wedding party to have only paid £120/night, still very expensive though, not least for a "restaurant with rooms" so clearly standard would have to be faultless.

Unfortunately, when I went to have my shower, it was freezing cold, which I'm afraid, in the 21st century is just not acceptable, especially when you're paying a fortune for a few simple things in a hotel stay:- bathroom, bedroom, breakfast, service, cleanliness. The far worse part to this story though is the reaction of staff at check-out. They asked the obligatory question "was everything OK with your stay" and I answered "no, I'm afraid we had no hot water this morning", and they replied "oh, I'm very sorry, thank you very much though for the feedback". And not wanting to kick up a fuss, I left with my partner, appalled at the lack of care from the staff at a supposedly 5* hotel.

When I worked in a 5* Radisson hotel, the CEO put in place a 100% satisfaction guarantee for all hotels, which is still in place as their motto over 15 years later...this means that if one thing was wrong with your stay, such as having to move room, shower didnt work properly, had a bad breakfast, they would refund you your whole stay, and you wouldn't pay a penny...and hence the size of Rezidor Radisson as one of the most successful hotel groups in the world as they provide themselves on having the best staff and the best service.

With the simplest of training, the staff should automatically have known to offer me something by way of compensation, or some form of discount off the bill. Alternatively, I would have been happy for them to call over a manager to speak with me - at least then I would have had the impression that they care for their guests and appreciate the fact that someone is paying a large sum of hard-earned money for an enjoyable stay! As far as I'm concerned, this is simply a case of staff having little or no training whatsoever as I would expect better service at a Travelodge!

Final point, I've heard that other people have complained to the management at Oddfellows and had no response whatsoever - this is unacceptable and frankly arrogant.

I'm afraid my recommendation is to definitely avoid this venue.

Room Tip: Given the choice, I would go for the annexe as I assume those rooms would be quieter
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  • Stayed June 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
7 Thank AngloItalian78
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Sarah D, Guest Relations Manager at Oddfellows, responded to this review, August 25, 2012
Rich I have sent you email regarding your visit. Should we wish to discuss this further please do not hesiate contact me.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
West Yorks
Level 3 Contributor
13 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
Reviewed August 12, 2012

The style of the Oddfellows is exceptional. It is full of quirky decor ideas, a fabulous garden bar and a restaurant with good quality food and service. As a dinner venue I would strongly recommend it.
Our first room looked lovely on the surface. We had a premium double room spread over 2 stories. The room looked great but practically was rather a nightmare! Ladies, if you wash your hair, there is a complimentary hairdryer to use but find a mirror near a plug - oh no! I had to contort myself to dry and straighten my hair in the reflection of the tissue box. The upstairs sleeping area was very small partly due to the bath at the end of the bed. This came at the expense of a chair so no where to put your clothes or damp towel (other than in the bath). The room we stayed in was in the new build section in the garden. With its triple glazing and insulation it was baking on a summers evening. Our treat bottle of champagne bobbed in a bucket of luke warm water (the ice had melted) and wasn't worth drinking.Unfortunately, even with the rather pathetic aircon running at 17degrees from our 6pm arrival the room was still an oven at 11pm. The night manager kindly moved us to another room further down the building which was slightly cooler and we managed to open the window an inch.
Breakfast is not really included - if a pastry on a brown paper bag on your door handle counts then fine but that is more of the experience received in a £60 aparthotel. For the £215 per room, a proper breakfast should really be included rather than the gesture of £5 towards the £20 fry up and coffee.
I suppose what is disappointing is that for a top end, well designed hotel the level of going the extra mile was poor. We had a terrible nights sleep, had advised the team and there was no real apology as we checked out.
We won't be back which is a shame because it could be great.

Room Tip: Don't pack any PJ's its too warm!
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  • Stayed August 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank Mooseville
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Sarah D, Guest Relations Manager at Oddfellows, responded to this review, August 25, 2012
We were very pleased to hear that you loved the decor and restaurant. It's only through customer feed back that we fine tune our operation. I'm sorry to hear that on this occasion we feel short of your expectations.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level 1 Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed July 31, 2012 via mobile

stayed and had a fab time booked two rooms and both were lovely staff very helpfull would recomend it to all who go to chester go and stay we had a small child and they helped with all luggage both on arivall and departing

  • Stayed July 2012
    • Location
    • Cleanliness
Helpful?
1 Thank TheBlackBull17
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Sarah D, Guest Relations Manager at Oddfellows, responded to this review, August 25, 2012
We are really glad you loved the hotel. Please visit us again soon.
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
1 review
Reviewed July 29, 2012

After hearing about the relaunch of Oddfellows I decided it was time to treat my partner to a romantic meal.

We had high expectations because of the link with Simon Radley of the Grosvenor, and we wasn't disappointed.

After starting with a drink in the bar we were seated at lovely table looking out at the garden.

After looking at the tapas menu in the bar, I thought I'd made my mind up on what I was having to start - chicken with a red pepper hummus, but after browsing over the al-a-carte menu at the table I decided on the diver scallop with salt fish pate. My partner opted for the carpaccio of tuna. When they arrived they looked elegantly prepared and the taste didn't disappoint either. My partner couldn't have picked a better starter for herself, it was light and looked amazing, even if the price was slightly steep.

For mains we both went for the Bharja, lamb rump with cracked wheat. We went for this as it sounded so unusual and I must say its one of the best lamb dishes we've ever had. Lamb cooked perfectly with the choice of herbs and spices complimenting the dish.

My wife was too full for desert but I couldn't pass on the opportunity to try the Catalan Orange polenta cake, which was something I'd never tried before - I'm glad I didn't. All I could say is you need to try it for yourself.

The bill came to £78.50 including a bottle of wine.

All in all I think the decor is great, and the food we had was superb. I would recommend to anyone to go and try what we had.

The only downfall for us was that there is no parking available.

  • Stayed July 2012
    • Location
    • Cleanliness
Helpful?
Thank edward7060
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Oddfellows

Property: Oddfellows
Address: 20 Lower Bridge Street, Chester CH1 1RS, England
Location: United Kingdom > England > Cheshire > Chester
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Restaurant Suites Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#6 Romantic Hotel in Chester
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:3.5 star — Oddfellows 3.5*
Number of rooms: 18
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
As a hotel, bar and restaurant, Oddfellows brings a fresh and unique experience to Chester. The 18 exclusive boutique bedrooms each have their own charm and combination of iconic and contemporary furnishings. The design of the bedrooms is inspired by architect John Douglas who designed Chester’s landmark Eastgate Clock, cinematographer Peter Newbrook who brought the Oscar-winning Lawrence of Arabia to life, and the illustrator Randolph Caldecott whose humorous images were simply irresistible. Complete with The Garden by Simon Radley -our Mediterranean-inspired restaurant - and The Secret Garden - a unique indoors/outdoors oasis; Oddfellows provides the ideal escape... ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Oddfellows Hotel Chester

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