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“Fantastic food, superb spa, rubbish room”

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Hallmark Hotel Bournemouth West Cliff
Ranked #42 of 67 Hotels in Bournemouth
Reviewed March 21, 2011

When we first saw our room we were surprised at how small it was, but we agreed it was adequate for our needs - somewhere to shower, relax and sleep. Indeed there were some lovely toiletries in the bathroom and plenty of tea and coffee facilities in the room. There was also a large flat screen TV on the wall but unfortunately we didn't know hoe to operate it very easily not being used to Freeview. The theme of the hotel is 'wine' so there were artistic pictures of wine and bottles on the wall and a small bottle of wine in the room for you to purchase (for £9.99). We took advantage of all the gorgeous spa facilities before heading down to the brasserie for dinner. I must say that the fish and chips I ordered was the most delicious I have ever tasted, and my partner's steak was also mouthwateringly delicious. After dinner we returned to the room to recover from the excesses of food we'd eaten and relax watching TV. Unfortunately, the sound of the TV was drowned out by the noise of the water tank filling from the loft space (we were on the second floor in Room 103). This continued throughout the night with other guests having baths and the noise continued for at least 15 minutes at a time. In the morning, we were woken by the noise of early morning bathers using the water. I would definitely go to this hotel again but I would refuse to be given a room on the second floor.

  • Stayed: March 2011, traveled as a couple
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Thank Katie J
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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1,868 - 1,874 of 1,987 reviews

Reviewed March 21, 2011

I stayed at this hotel for one night with my boyfriend and some friends as we were down to watch a show at the BIC and I was pleased with my choice of hotel – it was slightly further out of town than some I looked at but this was actually a bonus as it was nice and quiet as was very busy as you started to get into the centre of Bournemouth! Some reviews on here are quite mixed but I was very pleased with the Hallmark. A great plus to have free parking at the hotel as many of the hotels in the centre of town didn't offer this. The rooms were great with big comfy beds and a nice flat screen TV in the room. The breakfast was great and we also had lunch at the hotel and returned for drinks after the show finished - the bar/restaurant area is very nicely done and staff very friendly. There was a wedding reception in one of the function rooms but there was no disruption from noise. We didn't get the chance to visit the spa but I would definitely come back and stay at this hotel as rates were very reasonable for the experience we had.

  • Stayed: March 2011, traveled with friends
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Thank HolidayLou
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 21, 2011

The reception, bar and restaurant have been fully refurbished to an excellent standard and the outdoor pool covered with the conservatory is excellent. The restaurant served good quality food and the staff were very friendly.

What lets it down are the areas in between which have not been refurbished and some of the rooms, which although pleasant have just had the cracks papered over. They are not large by any means and have not been fully refurbished, very undeserving of the 4* status. The hot water issue experienced by other guest reviewers is still a problem, as it was never actually hot and the shower was pathetic. We had room 71 on the third floor, where the bath was sited in a corner and 3 quarters of it was 'walled' in, so it was quite difficult to get in and out of.

The worst area is the second pool and so called 'relaxation' area near the spa. This is underground, claustrophobic and very grubbyy. The Ladies changing area is completely inadequate with 5 people in it, making it impossible to dry and change adequately, certainly no comfort. This are is the only entrance to the spa and quite honestly spoils the spa experience, which in itself is lovely.

The tiny lift is a nightmare, I think it has been there since the 50's and it is unfortunately the only one! No use if you have lots of luggage.

I would not recommend going during the season when the hotel is full, I think you could certainly do better for the money.

  • Stayed: March 2011, traveled as a couple
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Thank HawkenSwindon
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 13, 2011

When I called to make the reservation I was told the computers were down and that I would be called back. I said I'd wanted to book the spa package, gave the dates, and was transferred to the health spa to book the package treatments. I mentioned that the treatments were part of the package. Two days later no one had called back to follow up my accommodation query so I rang back myself. The lady who answered was very apologetic. But when I mentioned the spa package and dates I'd wanted to book, she told me this couldn't be taken on weekends. This wasn't conveyed to me at the time I booked the treatments two days earlier. So I booked a 2-night stay and had to pay for treatments separately.

The lobby and bar/dining areas are very nicely done and are the best part of the hotel. However, two of the clean towels in our room were anything but clean, with very suspect stains. Unacceptable. We took them down to reception on the way out for the evening and asked for them to be replaced in our room by the time we got back. The reception staff apologised and said this would be done. We also complained of the loose shower head that wouldn't stay up. They reassured us that this would be looked at, and that they would look into changing our room the next day. Upon our return to hotel late that night, the towels hadn't been replaced nor had the shower head been fixed. The next morning we mentioned this to reception who said they would get fresh towels sent up immediately. They also informed us that they were unable to change our room but that someone would be up to look at tge shower head. Returning to our room after breakfast, no fresh towels. So I just gave up and asked one of the cleaning staff in the hallway for a fresh set. The shower head problem was never rectified.

The spa was ok, but quite dated with much condensation and black mould growing on the ceiling.

Dinner in the hotel was very nice with very attentive service. However when we booked the table we asked for an 8pm reservation. Reception said it was very busy that evening so they would need to get back to me. I said I would be in the lounge area so they could find me there. We had a coffee and stayed for about 30minutes. No one had come to find me, so on the way back to the room I asked reception if the 8pm reservation was ok. It was only then I was told that it wasn't possible and that it would have to be 9pm. The later time was fine, but if I hadn't re-enquired I wouldn't have been told. There were 3 staff on reception - one of them could have come to find me.

There was no black pudding served at breakfast even though it was on the menu. And we had almost finished our breakfast before our tea and coffee arrived. I can appreciate breakfast can be a busy time, but still.

All in all, I expected much more in terms of service and standard from a hotel like this. I wonder if management are aware that things are not being followed up, like calling back guests, and that guest complaints aren't being followed up and through to ensure problems are rectified.

  • Stayed: March 2011
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Thank Yatadera
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 4, 2011

This is a very average hotel - average rooms, average menu, OK service, mediocre 'spa'. At the weekend it turns into a stag/hen nightmare. Unless you're on one, avoid at all costs if you want to go to sleep before 3am.

  • Stayed: March 2011
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Thank Hard_Woman
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed February 27, 2011

A very nice hotel indeed. Rooms lovely, spa facilities good & restaurant bar fantastic. 

I'd would be happy recommending the hotel or going back to stay there.

Best parts were meal at restaurant (without doubt the best hotel food ever, had ham hock & fish/chips),  Bournemouth/surrounding areas and overall relaxation of the place (very large room/bathroom, spa and hotel staff). 

Only negative was that the room was a little warm without the windows open. 

  • Stayed: February 2011
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Thank SimonJ22
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed February 26, 2011

When we booked the hotel via Last Minute it said on the booking description that massages would be included with no additional costs. When we got there this wasn't the case. Massages needed to be booked in advance and paid for.

Then the shower didn't work in our room. The shower head was very dated and only a trickle of water would come out. They gave us a another room to shower in.

Then we it came to the evening we went down to reception and asked if they could recommend any restaurants to go eat. The hotel is 5min walking distance from centre of town, and I said we could get a taxi if needed, so they had a pretty big choice. First they recommended the Harvester down the road, which we said we weren't really interested in. Then they recommended to me and my girlfriend Weatherspoons in town. I found this rude and shocking that a 4* hotel would recommend somewhere where you get 2 meals for £5.

I complained to the general manager after the stay. They have got Lastminute to change their booking description. They also said they would make sure all the front of house staff would be trained on the area so they can offer better advice.

What they have offered me as compensation is 20% off another stay and 20% off a massage. However, you can get this offer online from their website at the moment, so really they have offered me nothing, which I think shows how they feel about their customers...they obviously don't care and thought they would try to get more money out of me.

So in all nice hotel but Hallmark aren't a brand that care about customer loyalty and service.

  • Stayed: November 2010, traveled as a couple
    • Service
Thank JamesMolly31
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
helly200, General Manager at Hallmark Hotel Bournemouth West Cliff, responded to this reviewResponded March 3, 2011

I do not know of any hotel who will include massages free of charge when paying £80 for the accommodation, I am disappointed that you now choose to vent on Trip advisor 3 months after your stay on 26th November.

Hallmark absolutely do care about customer service and we aim to give a great experience.
You should not have been recommended to Wetherspoons but you were not specific in what you wanted and the new receptionist was just trying to be helpful and gave you other options too, as I said we are ensuring that the team have a better local knowledge.

Trip advisor is intended to be helpful for future travellers and not a way to tarnish the reputation of a business. My 20% offer was a gesture as you had problems with your shower, No other guests have ever assumed that massages are included in the room rate and this certainly does not warrant compensation.

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 Hallmark Hotel Bournemouth West Cliff

Address: 7 Durley Chine Road, Bournemouth BH2 5JS, England
Location: United Kingdom > England > Dorset > Bournemouth
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Spa Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#12 Spa Hotel in Bournemouth
#15 Luxury Hotel in Bournemouth
#16 On the Beach Hotel in Bournemouth
Price Range: $55 - $183 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4 star — Hallmark Hotel Bournemouth West Cliff 4*
Number of rooms: 83
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The Hallmark Hotel West Cliff, Bournemouth is centrally located to the town being only ten minutes walk away, and only ten minutes walk to Durley chine which leads to seven miles of beautiful beaches. The hotel offers 83 rooms with comprehensive meeting and event space for up to 300 people. Leisure facilities include two pools, jacuzzi,steam room, sauna, gym and five beauty treatment rooms. Free high speed WIFI, car parking is available at a charge of £10 per night. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Bournemouth Hallmark Hotel

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