Formerly known as the Royal Clarence Hotel (and still displaying this name), it's known as the oldest building officially referred to as a hotel in the country, dating back to the 1700's. When we mentioned we were staying here to people, they all said it was a bit posh. True, in the past I think it was classed a top hotel, and there have been some royal guests going back a few centuries. Now though, anyone can stay.
We spent a couple of nights in what was described as a standard rooms. We had booked 2 rooms, and requested cathedral views. Both rooms had perfect views, our wishes had been granted. The room on the 2nd floor was very small with no bath, the room directly above on the 3rd was a little bigger with a bath. You get double bed, small TV, an iron, ironing board, generous tea and coffee supplies, biscuits. It's probably the smallest rooms we've stayed in. The bigger room had a bath and a DVD player (which was broken) but apart from that was much the same. The whole hotel is a little quirky, with uneven floors, creaking stairs and an ancient lift. The maid did a good job of the cleaning, and the reception staff polite and welcoming. There were some breakfast trays left lying outside rooms all day, but apart from that the hotel seemed to be tidy, if a little worn around the edges.
WIFI is free, it even works while sitting on the green directly outside the hotel.
We didn't go for breakfast, although it was offered at checking. It's a little pricey (£11.50 I think), and there are plenty of other choices within seconds (for half the price) from the hotel door - Tea on the Green just being one of them. We didn't use the Michael Caines restaurant either, so can't comment on the food.
The main shopping areas are just a few minutes on foot, the quay about 10 minutes away, and it's a 15 minute taxi ride from Exeter airport, which takes you to the door. There's loads of restaurants and pubs nearby, the hotel has it's own either side too. All in all, if you need to be right in the centre, and can live with the small rooms it's not a bad choice. I'd suggest requesting a cathedral view beforehand, as this is certainly worth it.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Looking to the future of The Royal Clarence, we have every intention to rebuild the hotel with enormous sympathy. The 18th-century hotel, said to be one of the oldest in England, was gutted when a blaze spread from an adjacent building on Friday morning. The fire wrecked the inside of the landmark building and left the frontage on the brink of collapse. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Abode Exeter Hotel Exeter
- Exeter Abode Hotel
- Abode Hotel Exeter
- ABode Exeter Devon