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“Nice enough hotel, let down by bad service and bad food”

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Bannatyne Spa Hotel
Ranked #3 of 11 Hotels in Hastings
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed April 13, 2009

Hotel itself is quite pretty, however, is very oddly furnished, especially in the bar area, which has been "modernised" the furniture looks like it belongs in a branch of McDonalds, doesn't suit the feel of the place at all. We ate in the restaurant on the first night, steak was terrible, dessert was terrible, cheese board filled with nuts and fruit and very little cheese. They did give us a couple of glasses of wine as a gesture when we complained. Breakfast the following day was no better and the staff were very badly organised. Went along to the spa for a couple of treatments, wasn't offered a robe, or told where to go, it all felt a bit disorganised. The treatments themselves were lovely and the staff doing them were quite friendly. This sounds like we had a terrible stay, but we did actually enjoy ourselves a lot, we got a last minute deal so didn't pay a huge amount for it, which helped!

  • Stayed: April 2009, traveled with friends
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Thank reasonforworking
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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859 - 865 of 881 reviews

Reviewed April 10, 2009

On the surface it seems nice but all the flaws start to anoy you on your stay. As you drive into the grounds all appears very nice, posh and relaxing.

The rooms look nice but not functional, particularly the bathroom. The staff were what I call typical Saturday staff. They aren't that bothered with you.

We stayed the Easter weekend and purposely wanted a relaxing break. We asked if there was a wedding at all. And there wasn't. But there may has well have been. We felt like we were living above a pub. All night long, people\staff screaming at the top of their voices. Appalling!!! Won't be returning or recommending it to anyone.

Restaurant was poor quality food! Definitely eat else where.

  • Stayed: April 2009
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5  Thank Kate1978Collgat
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 23, 2009

My husband and I stayed at the hotel and found the rooms, and food to be lovely. The bar was a little pricey but you do tend to expect this in a hotel, £3 a shot so a couple of doubles and mixers soon mounts up though! Our only problem was with the waiting staff, we had a meal in the restuarant on the Saturday night and had to wait over an hour from finishing our main course to being served dessert despite it not being busy. For breakfast on the Sunday we arrrived at 9.45am and found no juice glasses, no bread for toasting. It took 15 minutes for someone to take our food order, it was not busy and then it took over 20 mins to serve it! Either they are understaffed or not well managed! If you dont mind the wait for the food, it is lovely.

  • Stayed: March 2009, traveled as a couple
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Thank Bevvybee
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 22, 2009

Great hotel, friendly helpful staff, lovely surroundings.
Couldn't have wished for a better place to stay.
Will defo go back!

  • Stayed: March 2009, traveled as a couple
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Thank Gdks4
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 16, 2009

I stayed in this hotel as I wanted a hotel with spa facilities and this hotel certainly had great spa facilities. To get to the gym and spa you have a short walk across the hotel car park. The building is so big and houses and big gym, swimming pool with jacuzzi, sauna, steam and even outside jaxuzzi's too. There is a beautician area and a cafe too.

I booked in for a couple of treatments including a full body massage and facial which was great.

The hotel was fine, small reception and all of the staff seemed very young but most of them friendly enough. The rooms are sooooo big and the bathrooms too and I really liked all the funky furnishings in the bedroom.

At breakfast you help yourself to toast, fruit and cereals and then they come and ask you if you would like any cooked foods.

I would def stay here again.

  • Stayed: March 2009, traveled as a couple
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Thank loobie46
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 13, 2009

This was a country hotel which has been bought and renovated by the Bannatyne group.
The renovation itself is fine (although the choice of furniture for such a classic setting seems a little dubious) and there is a very well-equipped spa area.

However, what was letting the whole thing down when we were there in November was the service. The staff were all very young , inexperiienced and seriously undertrained - even the most basic courtesies beyond them.

What should have been a relaxing spa experience was like a Fawlty Towers episode. Prospective clients being invited to try the heated-bed relaxation area in street clothes and shoes with no regard for the paying clients using the facilities in bathrobes or swimwear. Staff unable to provide robes in which to enjoy this area because they were stored in a treatment room that was in use. Refreshments only available in a noisy sports bar attached to the gym area. The spa is in a separate building reached in the open air across a car-park - so you can't just blissfully drift back to your room for a nap in your robe! And - particularly penny-pinching - spa slippers are not provided, so take your own or have to pay £3 to get flip-flops from the sports shop.

The same Fawlty-esque ethos applied equally in the hotel proper. No greeting from staff if you passed them, no offer of assistance with luggage - ladies whose rooms were not ready on time had to drag their cases over to the spa and back as no-one offered to store them in reception. Meals took forever (dinner was worth the wait though - imaginative chef) and were a comedy of errors. The modern bar area was spoilt by the flat-screen TV still showing sport in the evening instead of switching to elegant cocktail music.

The Man Himself was in attendance on the day we left, and scuttled away when he overheard our complaints, sending a young undermanager to deal with them (ineffectively) instead.

Locals who use the sports facility reported that things had gone 'seriously downhill' since the new management took over,. Our impression was that they are trying to run the place 'on the cheap' instead of employing experienced staff who understand the expectations of the sort of clientele likely to spend money on a country hotel spa - ie not teens and twenties, which was the range of the staff ages.

I really hope it's since improved (I should think it must have or it will have gone bust!) but Buyer Beware!!

  • Stayed: November 2008
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Thank Limehouse_Lil
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 27, 2008

First impressions were nice gardens & clean reception area. As we were being served another couple arrived to check in. The two young members of staff at reception who were supposed to be booking us in, turned their attention to the couple that arrived after us as there was a mix up over their room. This wasn't very welcoming. Some customer service skills training needed there.

Two of the group we were with, who had booked Executive rooms also had their booking messed up, but that was eventually resolved.

Our room was very nice and modern on first impression, although the white towels were somewhat chewing gum colour and the sink became blocked as soon as we used it.

The communication between the hotel and the spa was poor. We were told that dressing gowns would be provided, they weren't. No clear guideline either that we had to arrange with hotel reception to take towels from our hotel to the spa and swimming pool areas.

We were told that our 2 for1 price included use of all facilities, but boy did we have trouble being booked onto classes as we were told that paying members would be given preference.

A member of staff at the elemis spa said they were leaving at 5.00pm and that a colleague would have to complete the other half of the treatment. So each colleague would do 15 minutes!!! Never heard of that before!

On the whole, we enjoyed the treatments and relaxation room and use of facilities, but found the experience to be very disorganised. One member of staff was particularly friendly though and was very helpful when we asked her about the local eating places.

The next morning a very nice member of staff had arranged a large breakfast table for all of us to sit at together.

There was a nice selection of fruit and cereals for breakfast, although I wouldn't recommend the full english breakfast as the scrambled egg was very liquidy and the bacon and sausage very salty

A loud argument also broke out between two members of staff in full view of the diners, which resulted in one member of staff walking out.

Reception staff did let us keep the room for an extra hour as nobody was booking in after us, which was very helpful. One of them very patiently took a number of photos of our group before we left.

All in all, a mixed experience. Needs to be more organised, and some improvements made and we would recommend.

  • Stayed: November 2008, traveled with friends
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2  Thank LVSSurrey
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Bannatyne Spa Hotel

Address: Battle Road, Hastings TN38 8EA, England
Location: United Kingdom > England > East Sussex > Hastings
Amenities:
Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #3 of 11 Hotels in Hastings
Price Range: $108 - $171 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4 star — Bannatyne Spa Hotel 4*
Number of rooms: 41
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Experience a unique blend of luxury accommodation, great service and fine dining with Bannatyne Spa Hotel Hastings. All 38 rooms are en-suite and many overlook the colourful formal gardens. Every guest enjoys complimentary access to Bannatyne's Health Club and all rooms have free WiFi internet access. The Bannatyne Spa is ideal for bringing that little extra to your stay or relaxing after a hard day at the office. Our team will help you escape, rejuvenate and harmonise body and soul, to cleanse you of everyday stresses and strains. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Bannatyne Hotel Hastings
Bannatyne Spa Hastings

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