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“Bittersweet stay”

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Hallmark Hotel Bournemouth West Cliff
Ranked #44 of 66 Hotels in Bournemouth
London, United Kingdom
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
“Bittersweet stay”
Reviewed December 2, 2013

Our stay was somewhat bittersweet. The hotel was a bit shabby, once you went beyond the "plush" reception. The room was substandard and would have benefitted from a good clean. Housekeeping was very poor, the bed sheets had stains and the bed was not neatly made up. The toilet in our room would have welcomed some lime scale remover and there was no hair dryer in the room as the hotel blurb suggested. We ordered room service which was lukewarm when it finally arrived. There was obviously some large function on over the weekend and the music was VERY loud. Some other guests were also inconsiderate at 3.30am. The steam room was not working also. Thankfully the staff were friendly and polite. Unfortunately we would not recommend the hotel or go back.

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  • Stayed December 2013, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
3 Thank Missgrace247
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Daniel G, General Manager at Hallmark Hotel Bournemouth West Cliff, responded to this review, December 3, 2013
I am sorry that your experience was not as it should have been, I hope that you will contact me directly to discuss. We do sometimes make mistakes but I hope when you let us know your issues we tried our best to improve your experience.
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English first
London, England, United Kingdom
Level 4 Contributor
36 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 16 helpful votes
Reviewed November 28, 2013

People as a rule are very quick to critise and not so quick to compliment. So in this review on this occasion I shall start with the positive however end on the negative.

During my staff at this hotel there was one staff member who bent over backwards to help us during our stay. Chris was fantastic. When on shift and a problem or issue needed help with he would drop what he was doing and deal with it almost instantaniously. I have say a big thank you to him.

Now I shall explain how my trip went at this hotel.

This trip was to celebrate my engagement to my fiancé who had proposed 2 days before in Rome and wanted to extend the celebration by inviting two close friends on holiday to Bournemouth to make it ever so much more special.

We had booked to two executive double rooms. After booking into the hotel we went up stairs to view our rooms. Whereas my friends room was rather spacious and luxurious, our room was small, dark and extremely hot. (upper floors due to the building structure become very hot so lower floor rooms are preferable, the dark is due to that room as the celling fan becomes slower or wont work when it's light is on) Immediately my fiancé and I became confused as to why the size difference in the same room rate.

So we went down to reception to investigate and Chris was wonderful as stated above and immediately allowed us to view another room on the ground floor which was the same size but the temperature different was brilliant, much coller and therefore would have been perfect to sleep in however the size of the room was the same. He then showed us one more room and it was utterly perfect and if i was to return for another visit, it would different be the room I'd stay in. (room 105) It still wasn't that cool in there but Chris sorted it by helping us with the child locks on the windows. The internet wasn't working there either so he attempted to fix it although the internet there never did work properly in that area of the hotel unlike the bar area and friends room but not an issue for me as much. When we were missing complimentary bottle of water Chris jumped at the chance to help and even when I requested hot chocolate powder he did help.

Now the negative. So after changing rooms and shlapping lugage. After the internet not working so well so my fiance would get rather frustrated checking football scores I bet. After a long day including traveling, spa, showing our friends Bournemouth Town.. it was time to go to bed. I opened the sheets to find obvious period blood stains on the fitted bed sheet. 1 small stain nearer my fiancé's side and two on mine. I have to admit I was so tired I couldn't imagine having to wait for staff to change the bed at that time of the night so as disgusted as I felt I slept on it and spoke to reception in the morning and got the cleaner to change the sheet.

Why would it still have been on the bed from a previous customer? Or was it as I expected a clean sheet but with previous stains. I know what some people might do in a home environment but not in a hotel environment. Shouldn't it have been thrown away? I know even in the program '4 in a bed' they would have thrown it and that's a b&b not a hotel so the standards should be higher for this hotel.

So that morning they were changed and our holiday continued. We had dinner in the hotel. We decided to have a relaxed meal while playing monopoly in the lounge/bar area. Two of us ordered starters. The other two didn't. My fiance was one of the people who didn't order a starter as he prefers a main course and dessert. The starter came twenty mins after ordering, was eaten and went. twenty mins later two main meals arrived and were eaten, mine arrived a ten mins later and my fiance was still sitting there getting hungrier and hungrier. I questioned the bar staff who was a very nice temp and she hurried the kitchen staff along but still not food. He must have waited at least 1 hour and half if not more for his 'rare steak'. Rare.... So considering the wait after I complained we were given a drink as a sorry but would have preferred the meal or the desserts to be on the house.

The last was the dreaded towel. I had bought a wonderfully new HUGE towel which was a limited edition Beach Towel measuring 5ft x 6.5ft £40 including post and packaging from the USA and of course it had to be white. (white towels in a hotel.. do the math) We came back after a morning of shopping and lunch out and wanting to go in the spa and have a nice dip in the jacuzzi again like the day before. So I got ready to go and suddenly realised my towel was missing. I prefer a big towel as hotels don't tend to have towel that fits me. Not there fault but it's the truth so when I realised my towel was missing I was upset. I'm still upset. The rule of this hotel and many others is that to save on water consumtion to save the environment and probably the hotel bills on laundry is that if you wish to have a towel replaced then place it in the bath and it'll be replaced. So as you do in the morning the replaceable towels were in the bath ready to be taken. My towel was handing on the rail drying for the day before as it's very big and needs time to dry. Where had it gone?? So I called reception and explained the situation. They said it must have been taken by house keeping. We'll ask and find out. I was called back and told that house keeping must have taken it and all the towel are taken to a cleaning service and it'll come back. I explained how upset I was and that I wanted it to use it for the spa and even the shower and that we wer leaving tomorrow so I want my possession to take home. So you'ld think it would have re-appeared.. Well it didn't. The next morning on check out I spoke to Sarah who was at reception and explained the situation yet again. She said that I should call in two to three days and they'll keep an eye out until then.
Three days later I called and asked to speak to Sarah or Charlotte as previous told by Sarah and was told to be honest the cleaning service they use clean all the towels for Bournemouth hotels in the area. I'll call tomorrow at around 3pm. Well I never did get that phone call or any communication regarding this matter. I waited over a month and still nothing so I had my brother in-law write me a complaint letter.

Well my brother in law is quite a strong complainer and to my horror after he had sent the letter on Monday, Today Thursday I received a comfirmation letter from the Director of the Hallmark and Spa hotels. He thanked me for the letter and explained there policy of sending any complaint letter to the hotel in question however he states the words 'as you will not be visiting any of our hotels in the group again. Given your unnecessarily rude and abusive tone this would be appreciated. He adds please note that we will not enter into anymore communication with me.

I have say i'm not either rude or abusive. I'm a support worker for special needs young adults, do 24 hour shifts at a time on occasions. I have been upset and taken aback but his reply.

I would have returned to the hotel no matter what was in that letter. The hotel itself is stylish and comfortable. The room we stayed in overall was nice.Chris was a wonderful member of staff to deal with.

My mine upset to be honest out of this experience is my loss of possession and upsetting first response letter but all I truly want is compensation to replace my towel which was taken without my consent and lost as I need it for my job twice a week for doing physiotherapy with one my residents in a swimming pool.

The letter did state that the complaint letter would be set to the manager of this hotel to investigate and reply back. I hope he or she reads this review and understands where I'm coming from.

(on a separate note, if you want to celebrate your engagement and for the hotel to give you a freebie of some sort.. Hallmark doesn't do that.. at least this one didn't... my fiancé did try but to no luck)

  • Stayed October 2013, traveled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Judith F
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Daniel G, General Manager at Hallmark Hotel Bournemouth West Cliff, responded to this review, November 29, 2013
As is our policy we read and respond to all comments on tripadvisor. The tone of your review is completely different to that of the letter you sent.

Having read your letter I can only confirm that as an employer Hallmark does object to our staff being called “thieves” and that the accusation that as a company we “are happy to tolerate dishonest thieving staff and that the entire company is by no means respectable but just a bunch of crooks” is needless to say not true.

Given that you stated in your letter that you “would not dream of returning to any of our establishments” and given the other rude, sarcastic and generally abusive content of the letter as a company we completely understand your choice to use other hotels in the future and do not see anything to be gained in entering into further direct correspondence with you.
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Ilford
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed November 25, 2013

I have travelled here as a recommendation from a friend as a great spa get away.. I have to say this hotel is fantastic in all ways staff are very friendly and helped me feel very comfortable. The only problem I had was wii fi connection but to be honest from the fantastic experience I am having I don't see that as a problem at all. Staff are quick to act to your aid and assist you.. First class customer service long with first class food... The spa was fantastic along with the very friendly staff. I am definitely coming back that's for sure . Forget 4 star hotel this has even topped a 5 star hotel I have been too. Keep it up Hallmark Bournemouth and Thank you xx

  • Stayed November 2013, traveled on business
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Rifitara
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Daniel G, General Manager at Hallmark Hotel Bournemouth West Cliff, responded to this review, November 28, 2013
Thank you for the great review, it is fantastic to learn that you enjoyed your visit and we hope you will be back t see us again very soon.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
poole
Level 3 Contributor
18 reviews
17 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 28 helpful votes
Reviewed November 24, 2013

I stayed here with the gf as a treat through a living social website. We had a tough start as despite even trying to book the hotel there was a hiccup with whether there was room for a living social couple. However, the manager who did take our booking was very polite and expressed their had been a misunderstanding. The following review is mainly all positive but the first thing i discuss was an issue.

Checking In. We walked in about 2.30pm like many do after check in open and met with 6/7 groups waiting. This would be ok if there wasnt just one person on the desk. The guy, dont get me wrong, was very on the ball and it was unfortunate we had a group of females kicking up a fuss about the types of beds they had in their room. Very fussy, i mean, if you book a 4 hotel rooms with 3/4 bed u either clarify what beds u have or take what the hotel give you. Either way, the guy never got any support and despite members of staff walking past i just thought, surely, you cant all not know how to check some people in? anyway, once checked in we headed to the room.

The Room - A small to averag size but well presented with modern fittings and ammenities. Genuinely impressed and thought 3/4 star standard and a huge king size bed which remembering one of the reasons the room may appear small. There not much to say about the room other than it was clean and what you expect in a good way. The shower was fine although a tad soft. The heating was on all times so u cud open a window even in -2 temps n still be warm.

The Spa- We decided to go for the spa facilities to relax after a long week and id say it is reasonable. One group hogged the one jacuzzi which was ashame. I would say even in most gym's you have 2/3 jacuzzis so disappointed a full operating spa only had one. The steam room, sauna and 'therapy' room all had their perks and the small pool was amicable however quite cold. We spent about 40 mins in there before leaving as the jacuzzi is all most people want, and i was no different.

Lunch - We had a late lunch in the bar and i really enjoy the bar. It was relaxing and me and my partner just chatted for ages which a good sign of an atmosphere. We had sandwhiches for breakie beef salad and chicken caesar and both tasted fresh and well filled.

We dined out in the evening locally before retiring back and no issues on going up to our room. There was tiniest bit of traffic outside but nothing of any concern if your staying in the town centre. We slept straight through until the morning.

Breakfast- Highlight for me 5/5. You have a good selection of cereals, toast etc for start and the breakfast buffet was fully of the england specials beans, sausage, bacon etc and tasted fine. Eveen though a buffet the food was hot and had been cooked clearly recently. Had tea/coffee etc and i really couldnt fault this.

CHECKING OUT - This was what stopped it being 4/5, Checking out at 10.30am clearly is going to be peak time. We go down there and there are 3/4 groups waiting. Ok, no problem. The guy being served is debating a £10 charge for something. Fair enough.....AGAIN, this time various memebrs of staff walk behind the counter, in front of the counter, walk away, come back, talk to another worker etc. This went for about 5 mins whilst the queue grew to 7/8 groups. i NEVER fault the member of staff as he is dealing with that customer and rightly so but in retail i have learnt you can always tell customers what you are doing to show something is being done. This didnt happen. So now we been held up for 7/8 mins and eventually a, like a shining angel, a member of staff appears...............slowly takes a stroll to the counter.............like, quite a long time. Wheres the urgency, you get quicker service in a supermarket if u r waiting and there u could only be spending 10p......The point is, as soon as a queue developed its common to simply look up the waiting customers and say e.g. "just phoned for another member of staff who be here as soon as they can" then carry on sevring the customers. mean while we have been acknolwedged and appreciate they cant serve everyone at once. Then i expect to see a worker moving 'efficiently' and serving us as soon as possible......Anyway, it was just a frustrating thing working in retail not seeing such basics being done.....

All in all, take out my perhaps over the top rant, it was a nice hotel that i would not pay full price but on a special offer would certainly consider.

  • Stayed November 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank latinosteve
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Daniel G, General Manager at Hallmark Hotel Bournemouth West Cliff, responded to this review, November 28, 2013
Thank you for you comprehensive review an your helpful comments, you have given us some very interesting feedback. It is good to learn that you enjoyed your visit.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Winchester, United Kingdom
Level 4 Contributor
44 reviews
16 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 76 helpful votes
Reviewed November 24, 2013

We stayed here for a night in November 2013 on a KGB deal. We cannot fault the hotel. The room was clean and warm, the tapas (included in our deal) was ok and the staff were polite and helpful. The breakfast was very good. The spa facilities were also to a high standard. we thoroughly enjoyed our stay here and would certainly consider visiting this hotel again.

  • Stayed November 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank desandh
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Daniel G, General Manager at Hallmark Hotel Bournemouth West Cliff, responded to this review, November 28, 2013
Thank you for the positive review, it is great to learn that you enjoyed your stay and we hope you will be back to see us again very soon.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level 3 Contributor
18 reviews
8 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 19 helpful votes
Reviewed November 24, 2013 via mobile

Firstly hotel has strange policy of min 2 night stay but you can book 1 night stay with booking agencies?
Secondly informed hotel of special occasion & requested good room but only got a small corner room on 3rd floor.
Thirdly hotel rooms are noisy from other guests walls & ceilings thin as woken up in night with noise. Beds not that great as not very comfortable.
Lastly cleanliness of rooms not great, very dusty, mold in bathrooms and very dated shower facilities. Hotel itself in general in corridors upstairs & bedrooms need attention as first impressions in downstairs public areas are very good. I couldn't see where the 2 million £ refurbishment went as it wasn't on the rooms or bathrooms or even beds. Shame as website gives the impression a very swanky hotel to stay at.

Stayed November 2013, traveled as a couple
Helpful?
1 Thank horley2112
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Daniel G, General Manager at Hallmark Hotel Bournemouth West Cliff, responded to this review, November 24, 2013
We are very sorry that your recent stay was not up to your expectation or our standard. I hope you will contact me directly so that we can discuss and hopefully we can work to improve your lasting impression of us. All bedrooms and public ares have benefited from some form of upgrading following our refurbishment.
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Travelers are raving about these Bournemouth hotels

Caerphilly, United Kingdom
Level 6 Contributor
422 reviews
82 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 727 helpful votes
Reviewed November 24, 2013 via mobile

We had a night in this hotel which has slightly confusing car parks but the hotel itself is an old style building which makes it beautiful.

They have a lovely lounge and bar area which over looks the pool which is in a out building. We checked in quite quickly and had room 102 which is at the far end of the hotel in a very quiet area which is lovely. Room 102 is and executive double which is huge, you walk in to a big living room which has a large tv on the wall and a very comfy sofa, then you have a really large bedroom with 2 huge walk in cupboards. The bathroom is well designed and fully tiled so as you can tell the room was fantastic.

We used the gym which is just off the pool in one of the out buildings it is only a small gym and the equipment needs a bit of an upgrade but it's a lovely quiet gym. After the gym we wanted to go for a swim which we had to leave and go to the spa to get towels as the desk by the pool wasn't manned. The biggest let down to this hotel is the changing rooms which are poorly designed as there are only 2 changing rooms and if they are in use you just change where you are but if anyone opens the door to enter the changing room the whole pool can see in. Basically the changing rooms need to be completely changed but the pool is lovely and kept at the perfect temperature.

The best part of this hotel is definitely the staff who will do anything to keep you happy and a big thank you to the receptionist I didn't catch her name but what a credit to the hotel perfect example of fantastic customer service.

Stayed November 2013, traveled as a couple
Helpful?
1 Thank Kayleigh_M_Williams
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Daniel G, General Manager at Hallmark Hotel Bournemouth West Cliff, responded to this review, November 24, 2013
Thank you for the great feedback, it is fantastic to learn that you enjoyed your recent visit to the hotel. We look forward to welcoming you back in the very near future.
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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

Property: 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:
#11 Spa Hotel in Bournemouth
#16 Luxury Hotel in Bournemouth
#18 On the Beach Hotel in Bournemouth
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
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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