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“A pleasant surprise.” 5 of 5 bubbles
Review of The Clarence Hotel

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The Clarence Hotel
Ranked #2 of 38 Hotels in Portsmouth
Certificate of Excellence
London, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
5 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
“A pleasant surprise.”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed April 29, 2011

This hotel was a very pleasant surprise. We were warmly greeted on arrival and offered complimentary drinks. We were assisted with restaurant bookings and advised on places to visit whilst in Portsmouth. Breakfast was equally surpassed our expectation and was delivered with attentive service throughout! We will indeed visit again. Thank you!

Room Tip: Great place off the beaten track!
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  • Stayed March 2011, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank donVesuvius
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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1,066 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Sleep Quality
    5 of 5 bubbles
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    5 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    5 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    5 of 5 bubbles
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (257)
Date | Rating
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Portuguese first
  • Any
English first
london
Level Contributor
6 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 11 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed April 25, 2011

Having read the reviews on Trip Advisor I opted for this hotel for a Easter break having stayed at the Florence a couple of years ago (was disappointed in the room we had there) and seen this hotel en route to the beach. There weren't many rooms left (I should of booked earlier!) and as I like my showers I picked the Classical room (room 2) .... and wasn't disappointed at all.

The hotel is situated in a quiet road very close to the parks and sea front in South Sea. No shouting, no drunken groups.... just bird song and peace and quiet. You bascially turn a corner, then a very short walk, then its over the park and to the beach! The beach was much quieter here than further down near Portsmouth and there a vast parks and a cute little boating lake a short walk away. You can walk to the main shops in Portsmouth (wear your walking shoes) or get a cab, the staff are more than happy to order one for you and they all came within a matters of minutes!

We were shown into the lounge and given a free welcoming drink while our bags were taken into our room. We were also given a map on which Amber helpfully marked out some shops, places to eat and places to visit. (many we didn't even know where there!)

The room was beautifully decorated. There was a king size sleigh bed, a small but useable wardrobe (there's an ironing board so I just ironed what I needed to wear each day rather than hang things up, much easier!), dressing table, storage box at end of bed and a lovely little sofa. Plus a flat screen tv with free films! (we watched The Kings Speech.. for free!) The bathroom was lovely and the shower a delight, even my partner who isn't a shower person loved it.

The bed.... oh my, the bed. Best nights sleep ever!! I have never slept on a mattress like it. and the pillows, not once did I have to turn them half to try and get comfy. It was like laying on a mattress of air. (and I will be emailing to ask for suppliers!)

There is also air conditioning in each room which was a god send on such a hot weekend. Brilliant idea that.

Regarding the noise.... we were on the ground floor and the only noise we heard were a couple checking in late at night. I'm a very light sleeper and every hotel I have stayed in there is noise from other rooms, it is to be expected (I always have ear plugs with me, just in case I need them but didn't this time round).

The room was cleaned every day and the cleaning standards are so high! They did a turn down service in the evening (with little chocs and quotes on the pillows each night) and there wasn't a speck of dust or smear anywhere. You get little bottles of water each day as well which is a nice touch.

Now onto the breakfast. The list is large and nicely varied and the full breakfast is the best I have tasted. (the scrambled eggs were how I have always wanted to cook them but never worked out how). Had the waffles as well and they were lovely. The serving staff were so nice and helpful and nothing was too much trouble for them. We also had the breakfast in our room (for no extra cost) and again, this was top class and delivered exactly on time. Also had room service in the evening and that was excellent. We had the cheese board and everything was fresh and served beautifully.

There was no tea or coffee making facilities in the room but I can understand why due to the high quality of the furnishings. However you can have tea and coffee for free in the lounge (which we did) or pay a small fee to have some in the room. This didn't really worry me as we were out most of the days we stayed there.

The most important thing though was the staff. A BIG thank you to Louise and Amber for making our stay so stress free and a delight. Nothing is too much for these ladies. We loved it so much we even stayed an extra night! Also a massive thank you to the cleaning and serving staff, and to the chef. You all made our first short break for 2 years an utter joy.

Also got the look at some of the other rooms and the pictures on the websites do not do them justice. We will be back, we just need to decide on what room to try out next!

Room Tip: Ask to view the other rooms if you can!
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  • Stayed April 2011, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
2 Thank redheadedminx
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
sandhurst
Level Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed April 25, 2011

greeted on arrival, given complimentary drinks. all staff very very friendly. shown to our room and guided through facilities, advised on room service, bar opening times, breakfast etc. fabulous aquavision tv with all current free films and tv channels, and music to sort all ears.
plenty of towels, loads of hot water, fluffy robes and slippers.
air con in room so could adjust it to temp we wanted to.
staff completed the 'turn down' service, where they turn down the bed sheets and leave choccies and inspiritational messages on your pillows, adorable personal touch!!
we had the wild at heart room right next to front door, didnt hear other guests leaving or coming back.
breakfast - fantastic choice, between cooked and continental, would absolutely 100% return here for a breakaway from normality and have recommended to loads of people about the excellent service you receive here.

  • Stayed April 2011, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
2 Thank charlotteandpete2005
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
west midlands
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed April 25, 2011

had a lovely night at the clarence, friendly staff, room was beautiful, lots of special touches. Had a welcome drink on arrival and lots of help with where to go to eat etc will definatley return thanks

  • Stayed April 2011, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank garyandjulie52
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Wales
Level Contributor
7 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed April 24, 2011

I was later than my partner arriving at The Clarence Hotel. My first impression was that the £120 room was very small for the price paid. The decor was very tasteful and boutique-esque, but was hardly big enough to lay the bags down on the floor. We weren't told we had the smallest room on booking or the fact that there was no bath. This might be our fault for not checking. Despite also asking for the wi-fi password, it never materialised.
The welcome drink was a nice touch, as was the chocolate box gift during the evening. After a meal out in Portsmouth we returned to watch some tv before turning in the for the night. Unfortunately this is where the stay turned into a nightmare. The walls are so thin that I could here an echo of snoring from upstairs and downstairs. The tandem snoring kept me up all night meaning that when breakfast came around, I was pleased to get up and prepare to leave.
The breakfast was amazing and was thoroughly enjoyed. Fresh, tasty and served with a smile. Unfortunately the lack of sleep, light beaming through the windows meant that I will not be returning to The Clarence again.

  • Stayed April 2011, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 1 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
3 Thank Sion75
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
OfficeatTheClarence, General Manager at The Clarence Hotel, responded to this review, April 29, 2011
Dear Sir,

Thank you for taking the time to write a review about your stay here at The Clarence on the 23rd April 2011, there are a couple of points in your review that I would like to respond to.

I understand that you did not make the reservation yourself, rather your partner telephoned on the 21st April and spoke to myself. At the time your partner called there were in fact 2 rooms available for your stay. The first room available was the Gold Room which is one of our Deluxe rooms and the lowest grade room we have, the alternative offered was our Superior Room, Luella Cherry which offers a double-ended Hydrotherapy Spa bath. Your Wife asked me what the difference was with the rooms as there was a price difference and I explained all of the features of each of the two rooms in question and suggested that she visit our website to view the pictures of the rooms to help her make up her mind. At this point your Wife asked if she could book the room and then cancel if you were not happy with the price or room facilities to which I explained that our cancellation policy was 48 hours prior and therefore she would not be able to cancel without charge. She then said she would try to contact you on your mobile to confirm which room, if any you would like to book. Your Wife called back shortly after and said she had been able to speak to you and that you had decided that as it was only for 1 night and you were in Portsmouth to work that the Deluxe Room would be acceptable.

The next day you Wife called the hotel and spoke to the owner and asked if she could change her reservation to the room with the bath. By this time our Superior room had been sold so was no longer available, this was explained to her.

Your Wife did in fact arrive at the hotel 3 hours before our arrival time of 3pm, she was however allowed to check into the hotel immediately. She was offered a welcome drink and Wi-Fi code at this time both of which she said she would like. While she was having her welcome drink I understand that you sent her a message via text to say had left a file in her car. At this point she told the Manager on duty not to bother with the Wi-Fi code as she may have to go out and deliver the file to you. I believe that shortly after you sent another message to say that the file was not required. She was then shown to your room and at no point did she ask again for internet access. The Clarence is staffed 24 hours a day and a call to reception would have provided you with internet access within 2 minutes, alternatively there is a dataport in the room which accesses the internet without the need for a code.

I am sorry that you did not sleep very well due to noise from the rooms around yours. When The Clarence was renovated from an Edwardian residence we installed high-end soundproofing to alleviate the noise from other guests, however I am aware that very light sleepers may still hear some noise, about which I can only apologise.

We are sorry that you did not enjoy your stay as we always strive to offer our guests the highest levels of service at all times but on this occassion it seems that all the information you required was not received by you, which may have affected your stay. We strongly advise all prospective guests to view our website where they can view photos of each of our 8 individual rooms to ensure they reserve the room most suitable for their needs.
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London, United Kingdom
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed April 11, 2011

We chose this hotel because of the reviews from other guests. The hotel is very well decorated and immaculately kept. The staff, Louise, is extremely pleasant and helpful.
Our room, however, was a disappointment. It was quite small, but nicely decorated. The problem was the en-suite, which was a cupboard. It is quite the smallest I have ever seen and as such did not have a bath. Having seen the photos of whirlpool baths this was not what we expected.
No tea or coffee facilities in the room. Very nice breakfast.

Room Tip: Nice hotel, but avoid room 4.
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  • Stayed April 2011, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank LadyElisha
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
west midlands
Level Contributor
225 reviews
71 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 81 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed April 5, 2011

We stayed here recently for 4 nights whilst on a leisure break visiting Portsmouth. The location of the hotel is at Southsea (the seasidey bit of Portsmouth) in a quiet residential area-so no traffic noise. It is less than 2 miles into the city & so is walkable for the fit, & there is a regular bus service very close by as an alternative to taxis. By car only 5 minutes drive.
Quite a good selection of eateries of all types within 10 minutes walk without going into Portsmouth city centre.
This lovely old building is beautifully decorated in keeping with the period but with plush ultra modern bathrooms.
Having only 8 bedrooms it feels very homely & nothing is too much trouble for any of the friendly helpful staff.
Many little touches make the stay special: welcoming drink, quality toiletries, lovely fluffy towels & loads of them, bathrobes, nightime chocolates etc................
Breakfast was very good; plenty of choice from full English to buffet style & everything in between.
If I was going to nit pick it would be a) the wardrobe was a bit small to take clothes for a 4 night stay and b) there was no tea/coffee making in the rooms-possibly to protect the lovely rooms from spills- (however free hot drinks were always available in the lounge). These are really 2 very minor issues.

Room Tip: The Monkey room has a HUGE shower.
See more room tips
  • Stayed March 2011, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank francophile5310
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about The Clarence Hotel

Property: The Clarence Hotel
Address: Clarence Road, Portsmouth PO5 2LQ, England
Location: United Kingdom > England > Hampshire > Portsmouth
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Suites
Hotel Style:
#1 Romantic Hotel in Portsmouth
#2 Luxury Hotel in Portsmouth
#3 Business Hotel in Portsmouth
#11 Family Hotel in Portsmouth
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:4 star — The Clarence Hotel 4*
Number of rooms: 8
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The Clarence is Portsmouth and Southsea's multi award-winning adults only luxury boutique hotel. This Edwardian residence has been stylishly converted to offer well designed and individually styled rooms with luxury bathrooms. All rooms offer Air-conditioning, King-sized bed & Wi-Fi. Perfectly situated just 5 mins away from all major attractions and just a few hundred yards from the seafront, The Clarence is the ideal place to stay whether it be for Business or that well earned break. The Clarence also offers guests in-room health and beauty treatments ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Clarence Hotel Portsmouth

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