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Reviewed December 15, 2013

We stayed at St Michael's Manor hotel for a night at the end of November. Excellent service and a most enjoyable stay. Our room was on the second floor with views over the lake and gardens. The bathroom was small but spotlessly clean as was the bedroom. There is no lift so getting to the second floor means you need to be fit. We dined in the restaurant and my husband's need for a gluten and lactose free diet was catered for with no difficulty. Excellent location a short walk from the impressive cathedral and town. Lots of history. We look forward to returning soon.

Room Tip: First floor with view of lake and garden.
  • Stayed: November 2013, traveled as a couple
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Thank Gillian L
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
GeoffGoddard, Marketing Manager at St Michael's Manor Hotel, responded to this reviewResponded December 17, 2013

Thank you for finding us and for your complimentary review. The bedroom you mentioned is one of our most popular, especially for the views, which are almost as "breathtaking" as the stairs!

We'd love to fit a lift but unfortunately we'd have great difficulty with planning permission since this 16th century building has a preservation order on it (Grade II* listing). In some ways this makes the hotel a challenge to keep updated, but at the same time adds to its charm.

We hope to see you back in the future.

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Reviewed December 7, 2013

A birthday treat for my other half, this hotel and restaurant exceeded my expectations on almost every count. The staff are friendly and welcoming, the rooms are spacious but cosy, clean and well fitted out, the grounds are amazing and the food is spectacular.

We stayed in the Chestnut room, which overlooked the fishpond on the top floor of the hotel. A huge bed, large wardrobe, this room was one of only three in this part of the hotel, and was quiet and peaceful.

The restaurant was busy, with the main room being used for a Christmas party. We were put in a smaller dining room, and waited on at a courteous distance. Even though the festivities were going on in the next door room, they could not be heard from where we ate, and could definitely not be heard from our bedroom.

I cannot recommend this hotel enough, and will definitely be staying there again, with more time to take in the parkland and spa...

  • Stayed: December 2013, traveled as a couple
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Thank Cooper-Knights
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
GeoffGoddard, Marketing Manager at St Michael's Manor Hotel, responded to this reviewResponded December 18, 2013

Wow, this review is almost too good to be true and grateful thanks are due to you for taking the time to contribute.

Chestnut is one of last bedrooms that we have carefully redesigned and redecorated. It's proven to be very popular and we very pleased with your compliments, especially as the Christmas celebrations didn't spoil your enjoyment of it, or your meal.

We look forward to having such seasoned travelers as yourselves return.

Thank you

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Reviewed November 30, 2013

Me and my partner stayed here on 22nd November as a joint birthday treat. We had a lovely meal in the Lake Restaurant, the staff were very helpful and nothing seemed too much bother. The room was very nice and had beautiful en suite bathroom, my only criticism, the room was far too hot. Would definitely return for another treat.

  • Stayed: November 2013, traveled as a couple
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Thank Susan B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
GeoffGoddard, Marketing Manager at St Michael's Manor Hotel, responded to this reviewResponded December 2, 2013

Thank you for your compliments about our food and service and we're obviously pleased your birthday treat was a success. We’d love to welcome you back.

A good point was raised about the hot bedroom. The core heating of the building takes a while to regulate and sometimes it can permeate into the bedrooms. My apologies for this oversight.

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Reviewed November 29, 2013

My teen son and I were planning a visit to Warner Bros. Studio to take the Harry Potter tour. This was great timing as it was Hogwarts at Christmas - added bonus. We were going to travel with my friend from my university days and her teen daughter. This hotel is one of the hotels listed on the website - be aware you would not be able to walk to Warner Bros. The hotel offers a Warner Bros. deal but the taxi trip is only one way - not sure how you are supposed to get back, but in the end my friend drove their and back - about 20 mins each way.

We arrived at the hotel early on the day of our arrival, and they stored our luggage while my son and I went to see the town of St Albans and get a bite to eat. The gate to the town is amazing - Peasant's Revolt went through there. We went into the Cathedral and the Abbey of St Albans and had noon communion around the tomb of St Albans. Amazing building, and just a short walk up Fishpool street from the hotel.

We got back and our room (the Elm room was ready). We had two twin beds - smallish room, but comfortable and functional. Separate toilet from the bathroom. Bathroom had a shower with a rain shower head and hand held head. Soap, shampoo, conditioner. Great hairdryer (very fast drying). Water provided each day of our stay.

Breakfast was included in the rate and we could have it either in the dining room or our delivered to our room.

All rooms are upstairs, and the Elm room is on the second floor - no elevator, but Shaun was great and carried our heavy bags up the stairs and provided great directions and maps for getting around the town. Shaun suggested a great Indian restaurant and also helped with getting us a place for a cream tea when the hotel was full on the Sunday afternoon - note, if you want one of their cream teas - make an appointment.

So the Cathedral and Clock Tower were up the road to the right - as were most of the restaurants. A couple of pubs and the Roman museum and wall and mosaic is to the left down the road. Note the pubs are not open for dinner on Sunday night.

My friend and her daughter had the almond room on the third floor - larger room than ours, and again two single beds and separate toilet from the bathroom, but think they had a bath.

Great stay, and after seeing Watford (where Warner Bros. is located) would choose this hotel to stay at for any return visit to see Harry Potter.

Would stay again, and the town has great Roman and English history.

Room Tip: Elm and Almond are rooms with twin beds. If not much luggage, choose the Almond room. If lots of luggage choose the Elm room.
  • Stayed: November 2013, traveled with family
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Thank AussieNarelle
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
GeoffGoddard, Marketing Manager at St Michael's Manor Hotel, responded to this reviewResponded December 2, 2013

We very much appreciate the time and dedication this reviewer has taken, along with the tips, not just about the hotel but also about the St Albans area. A good point was raised about the twin rooms, of which we only have a few, but we do also have a few suites and are also able to put extra beds in some of the larger rooms.

This is the first review from a guest that has benefited from our Warner Bros Studio ‘package’. The comment regarding a taxi to the studio (one way) has been something we debated at length and it proved too difficult to include a return as the tours seem to have different lengths and timings. We’re constantly monitoring this though, to see if we can offer both ways.

I have passed on your comment about our helpful staff, which always helps their continued motivation, and we hope to welcome you back on your next trip.

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Reviewed November 26, 2013

First impression - the room was crowded and the tables put together for our party were not of the same height.
A good variety of teas was offered (but made with tea bags). The sandwiches were made from too thick sliced bread for tea-time fare and the white bread wasn't very good. The fillings were sparse and uninspired, there were 4 varieties. The scones were over-baked and most had collapsed instead of risen evenly. I didn't find a strawberry in my jam! My expectations of "afternoon tea" were not met.

  • Stayed: November 2013, traveled with family
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1  Thank Dee C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
GeoffGoddard, Marketing Manager at St Michael's Manor Hotel, responded to this reviewResponded November 29, 2013

We are pleased that the guest has also taken the time to email the General Manager, who has responded directly. Obviously we’re disappointed that no issues were raised at the time nor did the afternoon tea meet their expectations.

Having taken these comments seriously we examined the security CCTV camera in our lounge, where the Afternoon Tea is normally set. We are somewhat confused by their statement as we observed these four guests, the only table of four that day, sitting comfortably at a single table (for six people) in the best position the lounge has to offer. With a capacity to easily seat 24 people, there were never more than six other people taking tea in the lounge at the same time as these guests.

We served 20 teas on this day, without comments from any guests. The popularity of these teas (around 150 per week) means we take great pride in their importance, yet we are always open to constructive ideas, and ambitiously even try to please ‘all of the people all of the time’. With the latter in mind we have moved away from loose-leaf tea and ‘chunky’ jam.

We would welcome the opportunity to have the guests revisit and redress their concerns.

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