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“Nice enough hotel but restaurant like something out of Ramseys Kitchen Nightmares”
Review of The Grand Hotel

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The Grand Hotel
Ranked #30 of 85 Hotels in Torquay
Reviewed July 29, 2014

I have seen reviews of this hotel where people have complained about the rooms and the state of decor etc, we stayed in the Elgar Suite, which whilst some of the decor looked a bit tired and a bit dated, the rooms were nice enough and spotlessly clean, absolutely no complaints on that score. However the weather was extremely hot during our stay and the rooms were stiflingly hot, there was no air conditioning, just a couple of fans in the wardrobes which just moved the hot air around a bit, I kept closing the curtains and leaving the windows open during the day to try to keep the heat at a minimum, but the housekeeper kept opening in them again. Could do with installing some air conditioning really. We have no complaints about noise, and the beds were very comfortable. Some of the receptions staff were pleasanter than others, but you would expect that in all walks of life.
Breakfast was the best meal of the day we got here, if we got down early we were seated quickly and there was plenty of food on offer, although there was no butter or jam on our table. However the morning we got down slightly later, a lot of the hot buffet/English breakfast food was running low, and was quite slow to be replaced, but generally at breakfast time we were well fed. However we had booked for evening meals also, in the hotel restaurant and the food was expensive and very bad. The first day we had only booked our evening meal at 7pm so around 3pm we decided to order a snack from the bar menu, we were immediately given a long list of what wasn't actually available, so I eventually ordered a ham and piccalilli sandwich, and my husband ordered a bread platter with flavoured butters and olive tapenade, when the food came after probably about half an hours wait, there was no piccalilli on the ham sandwich, and the bread platter was 3 dry bread rolls on a plate, no butter or tapenade. Given that these were £8.00 not great value for money, my husband eventually got his butter, and something that resembled olives that had been chopped up with a knife, but on asking where my piccalilli was my sandwich got took back to the kitchen and returned about 15 minutes later somewhat drier (it was very hot) with the explanation there was no piccalilli but there was a small dish of plum chutney (doesn't go with ham very well) on the side, nobody asked if I wanted plum chutney instead, or did I want to change my order, it was just plonked in front of me. That evenings meal we ate in the 1887 restaurant, I ordered monkfish masala when it came it was barely lukewarm and the piece of monkfish was about 2inches square and overcooked to the point where if I'd have thrown it at the wall it would of bounced back and I could have caught it, at £28.00 even if it had been edible the size of the piece of fish would have rendered the meal a rip off. On our final night after the rather poor food we decided to eat in The Compass (bar) what a fiasco, 35 minutes after being seated we both ordered asparagus mornay for starter, it came another half our later, stone cold, and the hollandaise sauce was just a watery mess where the water with vinegar that had used to cook the poached egg was flooding the plate. Another 40 minutes later our plates were cleared, and 20 minutes later my tuna nicoise and my husbands chicken salad arrived, as did my son's (who was starving by this point) chicken goujons. The potatoes on the nicoise salad looked like they were days old, the tuna was cooked to the pint it was so dry I couldn't swallow it, and the salad was just limp, exactly the same went for my husband's chicken salad. By this point the poor waitress was mortified and couldn't apologise enough for the delays, poor quality etc etc was offering us free deserts and coffees, so I ordered cheese and biscuits which had we been paying would have cost £12.00 I got five pieces of about 1 inch square cheese that was warm and obviously not kept in the fridge, and 5 biscuits, and some more of the aforementioned plum chutney. We had planned to eat our dinner and then take a walk to nearby Cockington village, however from 7.30pm we only got away from the restaurant at almost 11pm, the restaurant manager was very apologetic and cleared our bill so there was no charge, she had also done the same for 2 other tables nearby, one woman who got her burger still in it's plastic wrapping, and another family who were sending things back left right and centre. I felt for the restaurant staff that night, the girl who served us did nothing but apologise, and we hadn't even complained.
In all the hotel was nice enough and very clean, but if you are planning on staying don't book half board, find somewhere nice to eat out where you'll be served in time to carry out any planned activities, and get value for money.

Room Tip: The rooms on the 4th floor are very hot in hot weather, unpleasantly so, so if you suffer with the h...
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  • Stayed: July 2014, traveled with family
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Service
2  Thank IrishRoverWigan
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Reviewed July 28, 2014 via mobile

We stayed at The Grand for a weekend break. Had a terrific deal on a standard room. After reading previous reviews was concerned about condition of hotel and room size.
When we walked into the lobby we were blown away by its decor. It is beautiful. Very opulent as if stepping into Agatha Christie times.
Receptionist was lovely and very efficient and we were given a pass to park free on road outside hotel. There is also undercover parking that is free.
Our room 318 was a standard room with a side seaview. It was bright and comfortable with a large double bed, coffee/tea making facilities. A free safe and although no A/C there was a fan to help cool the room, which was very hot.
Bathroom had large bath and shower, lovely soft towels supplied and some very nice shampoo and soaps supplied as well.
We had the window open both nights we stayed and the only noise we heard were the seagulls and pigeons. Lovely nights sleep was had by both of us.
Indoor pool was quite wonderful but it was a shame jacuzzi wasn't working. We were told that sadly that wasn't a rare occurrence. Sauna and small gym facilities were offered as well. Outdoor pool was a very good size and warm. Sunbeds were plentiful.
The hotel is right on seafront about 15 minutes stroll from harbour. There were some nice restaurants here. Plenty of shops both mainstream and smaller unique stores.
The bar, outside terrace and restaurants were lovely bright and pleasant. Only one problem in bar was staff struggled to understand what we wanted to drink. There was a slight language problem.
On the whole we had a wonderful weekend break which was reasonably priced in an amazing hotel. It was well worth the price

Stayed: July 2014, traveled as a couple
2  Thank chuckles62
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 27, 2014 via mobile

Hotel not bad, receptionists seemed to be unhappy with their job came across rude at check in. None helpful when asked about points of interest. The room very stuffy & hot, no air conditioning??? Traffic on local roads very load. But overall a good pleasant visit to Torquay & surrounding beaches ( breakwater beach) will definitely come back but maybe try a different hotel ps hotel is in a great location!

Stayed: July 2014, traveled as a couple
Thank Hasan R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 26, 2014

We booked this hotel for a family summer holiday. On arrival we found the hotel to have no secure parking, and had to leave our car in the cricket club. Having walked with 4 suitcases from the cricket club to reception we then had to wait 10 minutes to check in. Reception staff were trying to please guests but you could tell that there patience was being tested. ( it appeared that a lot of guests were complaining about the lack of car parking and the mood in reception was not pleasant and inviting). Having checked in we went to our room. Although the room was big enough for all of us, it was very hot and stuffy, the windows only opened very slightly there was no air and it was very uncomfortable at night. We plugged a fan in which was very noisey and did very little to help. Just us we managed to get some sleep we were woken up with the constant traffic and road noise from around 5.30am each morning this traffic was none stop even during the day. The hair dyer didn't work. The control on the shower fell off on your hand. There was 2 chips on the basin. There were stains on the carpet and some of the wall paper was peeling in places. The breakfasts were hit and miss, if you got there early you had a good selection of food, the later you left it the choice wasn't that great. One morning we went down at 9.30 and the Bain Marie's were almost empty as was the buffet table. The waiting staff seemed over worked and tried, we were overlooked a couple of times and I had to go and ask for hot drinks and butter for our toast. The music was the same all week I believe it was Michael buble (excuse my spelling of his name if this is wrong). I had scrambled egg and smoked salmon one morning and found an hair in it, I couldn't find any waiting staff to point it out to, so I told reception afterwards. We used the swimming pools a few times, we felt that there was not enough sun loungers for guests to use and that local people that were leisure club members took a lot of them up most of the time. The tiles in paddling pool and the indoor pool were missing in places and were sharp on your feet. The changing rooms were disgusting and very unclean. There were dirty towels everywhere on the floor and strewn near the showers and the laundry bin was overflowing. The none slip mats in the showers were all slimly, and had no shower gel in the dispenser. The toilets had little or no toilet paper in them and the floor was almost flooded all over like someone had left a tap on or something, not nice to change in at all. The hot tub was disappointing it broke down twice while we were using it. One last point we noticed that members of staff were using the pool during their day off, no problem with that, but to been seen drinking to excess and rolling cigarettes and smoking them in front of us and our children we thought was wrong, as the afternoon went on there voices got louder and their behaviour changed, we decided that we had seen and heard enough. One of their names was Charlotte. We feel that we paid a lot of money for our hoilday over a £1200 for a weeks stay to be exact, and we what we were expecting and what we got was not value for money and not 4 star by any standards. The hotel is very tried in Places, needs more waiting staff. And a menu that is suitable for families particularly children. And maybe some evening entertainment, it has a lovely function room, that we only seen being used once whilst we were there. Please sort your parking out and think of the less abled people. Although the hotel has a garage, for around 15 cars, this is not adequate and we were asked not to park in certain areas, has certain managers thought that they were more important than paying guests. We will not be visiting again in the near future...

Room Tip: Don't choose a sea view room, the road noise is unbearable..
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  • Stayed: July 2014, traveled with family
    • Location
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
7  Thank Georgieboy73
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 25, 2014

We arrived early on Friday afternoon. Wale had difficulty in finding a parking spot . The receptionist offered to get the porter to find us a suitable spot later on.. Very helpful. The room was clean and well cared for even though the decor was a little dated. The problem was the kitchen. On Friday night we had turbot for the main course at dinner. I complained about the size of the portion to the Manager..he said it was a very expensive fish..£29.95. The size of half a weetabix. Sat night we dined in the bistro. Here NO fish..hotel by the sea and no fish!! Poor show. Sunday night in the bistro was different again super service, but still NO fish.

  • Stayed: July 2014, traveled with friends
    • Location
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
1  Thank Teacherclay
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 25, 2014

We came back to The Grand for a 3 night summer break in June having previously stayed in late September a couple of years ago. We were satisfied then and wondered how it would be in the summer. We were not disappointed. A spacious sea-view room was good value - we did find however that the previous, probably portly incumbent, had dislocated the toilet seat and on reporting this it was repaired within half an hour - efficiency of the highest order. With good staffing levels throughout, we had good service in the bar and restaurant - this seems to be well run establishment.
The restaurant menu choice was a bit shorter and the portions a bit smaller than our previous visit but otherwise the food was very tasty and well presented. We travelled on to the sister Falmouth Hotel and the menu there had a wider (usually 5 starters, 5 main course) choice and the portions a bit more generous.
The pool area is good - the heated outdoor pool makes for a comfortable swim whatever the weather.
With a bus pass and a bus stop outside the hotel it is very convenient to get to the centre of Torquay (or a twenty minute walk).

  • Stayed: June 2014, traveled as a couple
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Service
1  Thank Edwin75
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 24, 2014

We have stayed at the Grand Hotel a number of times usually for short breaks of 2-3 nights and dependent on the rates Dinner Bed and Breakfast.
The first time was striking as the atmosphere said Agatha Christie the furnishings and the decor gives the 30s feel with lots of timber panelling Booking was easy and if you get the young man with glasses you'll be well looked after.
I'd be wrong not to point out that the furnishings the decor etc. are in need of replacement but as for most Hotels they've endured a drop in bookings so I'm hopeful that next year the Grand will put on a new face.
As I'm partly disabled we request room 120 which has a bath and a separate shower.Some nights it can be a bit noisy at 6.00am with deliveries.
They have a bar area called the Compass Bar where they serve drinks and food through the day with an excellent variety of types and prices.the Hotel give you an allowance of 29.95 each for dinner whether you eat in the Bar or the1881 dining room.
The setting is great with views over thc de sea and back over Torquay.there is undercover parking and localised parking opposite the Hotel.
On balance I think the Hotel is great and in my view is very good value for money.
Give it a go!

Room Tip: We always go for inland facing rooms with an upgrade.best value for money in my view
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  • Stayed: July 2014, traveled as a couple
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Service
2  Thank Carroll3351
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about The Grand Hotel

Address: Sea Front, Torquay TQ2 6RH, England
Location: United Kingdom > England > Devon > English Riviera > Torquay
Amenities:
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:
#4 Spa Hotel in Torquay
#13 On the Beach Hotel in Torquay
#15 Business Hotel in Torquay
#15 Luxury Hotel in Torquay
Price Range: $83 - $222 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4 star — The Grand Hotel 4*
Number of rooms: 132
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Torquay's Historic Jewel For old world grandeur and traditional British charm, the Grand has been Torquay's landmark hotel for over 130 years. Overlooking one of the finest bays, this elegant Victorian hotel offers 132 individually styled bedrooms, The Grand spa, AA rosette restaurant 1881 and is surrounded by 22 miles of spectacular Devon coastline. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
The Grand Hotel Torquay, Devon

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