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“Very disappointing!!!!”

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St. Ives Harbour Hotel & Spa
Ranked #11 of 21 Hotels in St Ives
Cornwall
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
“Very disappointing!!!!”
Reviewed June 18, 2009

Stayed recently and attended wedding here. Had been told our room would be a recently refurbished room, this certainly was not the case. The room was tired and so was the bathroom. At first glance we thought we had been allocated a room with a single bed as it was that small! the toiletries provided were very basic, the hand towels shabby, only one bath robe provided, no extra pillows or blankets, no complimentary bottled water and the TV reception was very poor. The public areas are in need of refurbishment. The food was poor, including breakfast and so was the bar service in the evening. Wrote to the Manager who replied in writing that perhaps we were expecting too much from a 3 star hotel!!!! I work in tourism for Cornwall and certainly know what to expect and know of better B&B's in the area. Would not reccomend this hotel.

  • Stayed June 2009, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank Sarcharl
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
PorthminsterManager, Manager at St. Ives Harbour Hotel & Spa, responded to this review, June 19, 2009
Dear Sarchal

Thank you for your comments.

As I previously expressed in my letter to you, I am truely sorry that you were expecting more from us. Your room was refurbished in 2007 and I have stayed in it on occasion myself. I'm happy to state publicly that I do not believe it to be a below standard 3 star room.

No doubt there will be other guests who attended the wedding of 3 weeks ago who will also be choosing Trip Advisor to broadcast their varying grievances in hindsight. I am sorry that you are choosing to do this but all I can do is encourage the audience who are reading this to consider that these are stemming from one function alone and we have plenty of other good review inbetween these.
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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 of 5 bubbles
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Buckinghamshire
Level Contributor
5 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
Reviewed June 17, 2009

Having read the most recent review on Tripadvisor and being a guest at a wedding recently held at The Porthminster, I felt I had to give an opposing point of view. The wedding I attended was truly exceptional, the food was lovely and the staff attentive and helpful. Sure drinks aren't cheap - but then in such luxurious surroundings it’s only to be expected. I stayed the night in a room with a great sea view and breakfast the following morning was of a good standard and served with a "smile". I cannot praise The Porthminster enough and felt it really deserves to be defended from such harsh criticism.

  • Stayed April 2009, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Marlowmuddler
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London
Level Contributor
111 reviews
34 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 137 helpful votes
Reviewed June 13, 2009

This hotel is like an Aunt in a new frock, but still wearing old accessories. Our room had been refurbished and was clean, but the window woodwork still needed doing and the carpets in the room could do with updating to bring it to the same level as the rest of the room. I can understand however, if the carpets were to be done at a different time due to the cost of bringing in labour. I would have liked to have seen a larger duvet on the bed instead of a standard double - and for some reason it looked lumpy, as was one of the pillows. sort of like the effect you get if you wash polyeseter pillows wrong. The TV could have been bigger, and the reception was poor, but with the digital switchover happening soon I expect that will be rectified and hopefully the full range of freeview channels will be available instead of the basic 5. We had a wonderful view of the bay, pool and gardens from the window. Despite the rope in the sash window being broken, we were able to keep the window open. The room was well appointed with hair dryer, trouser press and iron, kettle, and most unusually, a plug in make up mirrror.

The bathroom was newly renovated and they have the same tiles I got at B&Q for my kitchen on the floor there! I would have liked to have seen a more modern style used for the sanitary ware. I don't like separate mixer taps in the basin (one of which had a cracked hot label). Getting in and out of the bath may pose an issue for the less able due to the proximity of the screen and basin. It looks as if the builder was under a bit of time pressure when working on the renovation as the mastic hasn't adhered properly in parts and is likely to cause areas of mould to grow if not rectified soon.

We dined in the restuarant on one occassion and it was worth it. The food is excellent (ex Ivy chef) as is the service. I thoroughly recommend having a meal here at least one night of your stay here. The view of Porthminster beach from here is magical. The prices are the same as you'd pay in the Porthminster Cafe on the beach, or the better places in St Ives. Breakfast is also served in this room. The buffett is limited to juices, cereals, yougurts, fruit and pastries, but cooked to order hot food is brought fresh to you along with toast, tea and coffee. The Pain au Chocolat was among the best I've had in the UK and probably the best I've had at any hotel! Service by the staff who seem to work long hours was very friendly and professional by all.

Next to the restaurant is the Lounge with still great views of the bay. We had a cream tea there one afternoon when it was about to rain and each evening had a nightcap before bed. Behind that is another lounge with some board games and library. There was also one pc there, but it was out of order. Wi-fi was working though.

The hotel has 2 pools. Despite the outdoor one being heated it still felt to cold to swim in during my stay, but I did take advantage of the indoor pool. Chlorine levels may need to be adjusted as my eyes went red very fast, but soon cleared up with some drops. There is also a very good spa next to the pool. It seems that at one time the leisure facilities were open to non hotel residents via a membership scheme as there was a former gym room which looked like it contained storage at the moment. Hopefully this will come back some time. There was also another games room (always open, never locked) with billiards and ping pong table. The bar was shut, with a wet varnish sign on it. This part of the hotel was a bit rundown, however I'm sure it will be done up at some point.

The gardens are worth investigating as they also lead to some short cuts avoiding the steep climb back from St Ives on the main road. If you go behind the lift on the ground floor you will see some stairs to the function room. Go through that and out the door to the terrace and follow the path down behind the pool and you will come to gate. Go down that and if you take the first left you will end up at the Train station and then onwards into St Ives it self. If you keep going straight ahead you will end up at the tennis courts and beach.

The hotel has a guest laundry on the second floor, but I didn't see it advertised in the hotel book. It seems the hotel is a couple of buildings joined together so worth investigating to see what you find!

The biggest asset this hotel has it the people. I don't think I've stayed in a hotel where all the staff have made you feel so welcome. From reception, to wait staff, bar staff, housekeeping and everyone else we all got a warm feeling that these people enjoyed their jobs and enjoyed looking after us. Once the few minor things on my list get fixed, this will be probably the best place to stay in St Ives. Regardless, I'm still going back there next year! Or sooner!

  • Stayed June 2009, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
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    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank fly4fun2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Portishead
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed April 27, 2009

Having read some negative reviews of this Hotel we approached our stay with some trepidation! However, the room was a good size - obviously refurbished - with wonderful views of the bay and blissfully quiet at night. The dinner menu offered a good selection of dishes (difficult to maker a choice) and was beautifully cooked. Breakfast also was very good. Above all, the staff were friendly and efficient. It is true that the stairs and corridors are a little 'tired' and we did not use the indoor pool so cannot comment, but we thoroughly enjoyed our stay and wished we had booked for 3 and not 2 nights. Re the comments on car parking and steepness of access to beach - this Hotel was built for an era when guests arrived by train rather than cars and the location is what makes it a wonderful place to stay. There is nothing that the Hotel management can do about this - except to move it!

  • Stayed April 2009, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank possetpeople
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Marborough
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed April 24, 2009

This hotel is advertised as a luxury hotel, which it certainly is not. The whole hotel is sadly in need of a lot of tlc - the room was small and had a strange musty smell, as did the corridors, with threadbare carpetson the stairs. There was work going on in a room under ours with banging and drilling starting at 8am, even though we had complained about the noise the previous day and had been assured thet work would not start until after 9am. The indoor pool had tatty, dirty carpeting and had no sun loungers, just 2 dirty garden chairs. The food was moderate to say the least!

It has a great location but to get to the beach there is a steep walk, which is not suitable for small chilren or the elderly. The best thing were the staff who were generally very helpful.

I was very disappointed, as my family had stayed here for over 20 years when the previous owners ran this hotel. I will not be going back again.

  • Stayed April 2009, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank MarboroughWilts
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
PorthminsterManager, Manager at St. Ives Harbour Hotel & Spa, responded to this review, May 19, 2009
Dear MarboroughWilts,

I am truly sorry that we failed to meet with your expectations during your stay.

As you recognised we are now undergoing works at the hotel in an effort to raise the standard of both our non refurbished rooms and our public areas.

It was deeply regrettable that you were disturbed during your stay. I have since put in control measures to ensure no other rooms are disturbed as we continue to refurbish the last few remaining rooms.

I am pleased you appreciated the location and the helpfulness of the staff.

If you would consider a future stay I would like to welcome you back as my guests, please contact me directly so I can personally extend to you every courtesy and so you can witness first hand the improvements we have made.
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Kirkcaldy, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
17 reviews
14 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 11 helpful votes
Reviewed April 7, 2009

Walked out as soon as we set eyes on the tired old place. The hotel looks nothing like the advertising material. It was tired and old with wallpaper coming off the walls and a mouldy shower in the room we were given. Can't comment on the rest of the hotel as we never stayed long enough...

  • Stayed March 2009, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
Helpful?
1 Thank Bob552
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
PorthminsterManager, Manager at St. Ives Harbour Hotel & Spa, responded to this review, April 10, 2009
Dear Bobkat252

I was extremely alarmed to read your comments this morning. Please accept my apologies for the disappointment you feel.

I am aware that you were offered a room move to a refurbished room, but you declined this offer, prefering to check out instead.

That was a shame because you would have experienced some of the best rooms in St Ives, 36 out of our 46 rooms are very recently refurbished.

Please bear in mind too that although you experienced an out dated bedroom, no other aspect was experienced, thus you didn't experience the high standards throughout the rest of the hotel.

I am pleased that we waived all charges despite being well within our rights to levy a charge, I would have hoped this may have made up, in some small way for the disappointment you felt over the standard of accommodation originally offered.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Tadley, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
31 reviews
14 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 59 helpful votes
Reviewed April 1, 2009

My husband and I got married here 24th May 2008 and stayed for 3 nights, 20 members of our family also stayed here for 2 nights. St Ives is a fantastic location with plenty of character, shops, restaurants and beaches.

We had a wonderful wedding day, our ceremony room the St Eia, is a beautiful room with huge windows looking out to the sea and tastefully decorated. There is a bar lounge with windows running the length of the room with wonderful sea views. We had our reception in the Selda room which comfortably accommodated 70 people, again had lovely views of the sea. It has it's own bar, comfortable seating areas, an outside garden area.
My mother and I dressed all the tables for reception the day before the wedding as I didnt want to leave the table layout and design to the staff as I wanted it to be perfect. The hotel manager was the wedding co-ordinator but didn't have a dedicated wedding team, so didn't want any old member of staff to decorate my reception tables!

The wedding breakfast (roast) and the evening buffet was really tasty and good quality.
The porthminster beach is a lovely place for memorable wedding photos!

We used local companies for the cake, flowers and photography. I would recommend Cakes by Design in Camborne and Wheal Sara Flowers in St Ives.

Our guests had a wonderful time too, so if you're looking for a wedding venue by the sea with all the trimmings that won't cost you the earth this is the place.

My husband and I had a huge beautiful room with a four poster bed and a wonderful balcony that looked over the bay of St Ives (but it was the best suite in the hotel as we were getting married there!)

Other members of the family had paid less for their rooms and really did vary in quality, from spacious and well decorated with sea views to rooms that hadn't been re-decorated and were actually quite shabby, which was quite embarassing as the hotel rates are ridiculously expensive for the quality e.g. at that time of year for a basic sea view room is £95 PER PERSON per night!
It's a small thing but the hallways and some sitting areas are dated and really need redecorating.

The cooked breakfast was very good which satisfied my husband! We can't comment on dinner as we chose to eat down in the town for our evening meals as there is lots of choice.

Parking is across the road, it's not very big considering it's catering for a large hotel, you have to give your car keys in at reception as they move cars about and park them close together to accommodate more cars.

Overall we are glad we chose the Porthminster Hotel for our wedding venue as it gave us everything we needed. We heard from the staff that it is being taken over and along with that comes renovation so hopefully will improve some parts of the hotel.

  • Stayed May 2008
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank KGryce
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about St. Ives Harbour Hotel & Spa

Property: St. Ives Harbour Hotel & Spa
Address: The Terrace, St Ives TR26 2BN, England
Location: United Kingdom > England > Cornwall > St Ives
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#2 Luxury Hotel in St Ives
#6 On the Beach Hotel in St Ives
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$
Hotel Class:4 star — St. Ives Harbour Hotel & Spa 4*
Number of rooms: 46
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
St Ives Harbour Hotel & Spa is perfectly positioned directly above Porthminster beach boasting stunning views across the water. Watch as the waves lap against the famous Godrevy Lighthouse in the distance and feel your troubles disappear. Explore the local harbour, as you meander through the cobbled streets, and then return for dinner at the Terrace Restaurant, serving up seasonal and local food, along with stunning sea views. The Harbour Spa provides the perfect hideaway, as you indulge in a soothing treatment and then unwind by the pool, gazing out to sea from the comfort of a lounger! Enjoy an indulgent afternoon tea, cocktail or light lunch on the alfresco dining terrace and soak up the sea air and sensational views. The 46 bedrooms offer complete comfort and some of the Superior Bedrooms have balconies - a perfect place to relax over a morning coffee with the papers or afternoon tea watching the boats sail by... ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Porthminster Hotel St Ives
Porthminster St Ives
St. Ives Harbour Hotel & Spa St Ives, Cornwall

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