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“You can be overcharged if you don't review you bill VERY carefully”
Review of Mari Vanna

Mari Vanna
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Ranked #1,536 of 23,226 Restaurants in London
Certificate of Excellence
Cuisines: Russian
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Restaurant details
Dining options: Dinner, Breakfast, Late Night, Reservations
Neighborhood: Knightsbridge
Description: Russian restaurant for any time, where one can meet friends, eat at leisure and feel at home. Welcome!
Reviewed January 2, 2013

We went to Mari Vanna with a big group and had a nice evening with lots of food, expensive vodka, etc. At the end we received a bill, split the total amount and paid it. Fortunately, I took the bill with me and realised later that although the items we consumed were stated correctly, not all the prices were correct. We were charged £580 for two bottles of vodka, while the price on the menu was £150 per bottle (hence, it must have been £300 for two bottles). As a result, we were overcharged £280!

Next morning I called to complain and was promised that they would investigate and call me back the same day. Noone did. Next day, I went there (with a witness). The overcharging was so obvious from the bill that there was no scope for argument. The manager (rather reluctantly) apologised for this "technical mistake" and promised to make a refund to my credit card...However, the card machine suddently "didn't work" due to "poor reception"! She offered to take my card details and refund the money later on the same day. I refused and said I would be happy to take cash. After some further discussions, the card machine miraculously worked and I finally got the refund. These negotiations lasted for about 15 minutes during which we were not even offered to have a sit or a drink! The staff seemed rather annoyed that they had to pay the money back.

Otherwise...nice place...just watch you bills :) As for me, after being treated this way, neither me, nor any of my friends are coming back!

P.S. Only later I also realised that the tip which we left that night was calculated on the basis of the incorrect bill. Therefore, we should have really been refunded at least £28 from the tip also (if not all of it, given the circumstances). However, I didn't want to go back to argue about this one...

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9  Thank Ana P
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Reviews (447)
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314 - 318 of 447 reviews

Reviewed December 28, 2012

I have visited them 4 times with great hopes each time. First I was there 2 days after they unofficially opened. Athmosphere amazed me, staff was welcoming and corteous wiithout being over the top, food was bad, but most restaurants have their problems when they just open. However, visiting them 2 more times I found their food the Russian best of London, the service went to hell. The 2 faced lady meeting people at the entrance made a needless queue of about 10 people who had to somehow take their coats off when there was no room to turn your head to the side! 10 minute wait let to the table (btw my 4people company was 2nd in line), 15 minute menu wait, rude drinks boy... and etc etc Both times the service was absolutely horrible. But when I went there in December (was in Knightsbridge, wanted my home country deli) me and my boyfriend waited for 40 minutes in total, on a wednesday at 4 pm!!! When only 5 tables were taken!!! 20 minutes of which by the way I had to wait for the bill because we got enough after waiting other 20 minutes for tea. The funny thing, I don't understand how someone can make customers wait to give their money to you... how is that even acceptable? And then she brings me an 80 pound bill... "ohh sorry..." all she said. So I left 11 pounds for a cup of tea and a glass of disgusting (bitter!) orange juice... and paid for the service because I realised that waiting for a bill without service included would make us explode.

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3  Thank AnastassiyaB
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Alisa E, Public Relations Manager at Mari Vanna, responded to this reviewResponded February 11, 2014

Dear Anastassiya!

Thank you for your feedback. It sounds like you've had some awful experiences and we are very sorry to hear that. We usually get quite good reviews and can guarantee that your experiences are not a norm. You must have been very unfortunate, and we must say that much of what you've mentioned is something we've been aware of and since the opening have improved a lot. We've learned from our mistakes and listened to the negative feedback and hopefully we'll never put anyone through what happened to you again, ever.

We strongly hope we can make a better impression another time and that you can forgive us.

Love,
MV

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed December 28, 2012

I ate here a few months ago with two friends, worth visiting just to check out the incredible decor in the main room and the loos! Think pre-revolution Russia, v opulent and lots of gold but tastefully done. The service was fab, they didn't complain when our friend turned up 1.5 hours late (!) and offered me a blanket when I was cold and even an iPhone charger for my friend's dying phone battery! The bread was delicious, proper dark Russian bread full of flavour. However, our mains (chicken fritters with mashed potato and salted cucumbers) were lacking in flavour and I couldn't finish my dish. Also, there was no plov on the menu. I know it's not strictly a Russian dish but c'mon, you gotta have a plate of plov on the menu! I think I will stick to Borscht & Tears on Beauchamp Place for now, but will def return to Mari Vanna in the New Year to give it another try.

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1  Thank londonchica13
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Alisa E, Public Relations Manager at Mari Vanna, responded to this reviewResponded February 11, 2014

Hi there,

Thank you so much for your feedback.

We have quite a lot on our menu considering our restaurant is not that big (and you should see our kitchen!). Hopefully, one day we'll have plov, it is certainly a very yummy dish!

We do hope your New Year experience was a greater one!
Love,
MV

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed December 24, 2012

Simple and authentic Russian food. For those who expect haute cuisine please choose another restaurant. It is a home-made traditional food, fresh and warming for long dinners with friends. The service is good and friendly. The decor is well thought. A bit pricey..? Well, those who know how much it takes to preape one Russian meal will appreciate what it costs.

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Thank Pavlycheva
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Alisa E, Public Relations Manager at Mari Vanna, responded to this reviewResponded February 11, 2014

Hi dear,

Thank you so much for your lovely review.
We are very happy you liked it and hope to see you soon again!
Love,
MV

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed December 12, 2012

The food was average at best and the service was slow. Prices were too high given that the food is bland and unimpressive. The vodka wasn't great, and there was only one caviar option on the menu. The overall presentation was nice, and the idea of the place is interesting, but I won't be going there again.

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4  Thank eej84
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Alissa E, Public Relations Manager at Mari Vanna, responded to this reviewResponded February 11, 2014

Hi there,

We are sorry to hear you were not very happy with your dining experience. We've considered your feedback and have been working hard on becoming better since.

Hope to see you again anyway! :)
Love,
MV

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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