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“Poor management and run down facilities really let this hotel down!”

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Best Western Plus Oaklands Hotel
Ranked #22 of 50 Hotels in Norwich
Reviewed June 9, 2013

We stayed at the oaklands hotel as guests at a family wedding. Almost all the family booked rooms of varying size and costs, almost all of us experienced some sort of problem during our stay. Problems started on arrival. We had all been told via telephone and email that because check in time clashed with the start of the wedding ceremony, and because we had to travel quite a distance we would all receive early check in at no extra cost, we were assured a note of this would be made and our rooms would be ready between 10am and 12 noon. Charges would be wavered as none of our party were ever made aware of extra charges at time of booking months prior. On arrival a male manager was called to reception, he told us we all had to pay an extra £20, there was no note on the system, the charge is always put onto accounts and never levered. He continued to tell us that nobody would have told us this information ( so calling us liars) and that he is the only staff member with the authority to cancel the charges, which he was unwilling to do. So £100 extra handed over we begrudgingly checked in. We also found the whole process of having to pay for your room on check in before even seeing your room a little odd, we would later discover why. Filthy rooms, with mould on walls and peeling wall paper were what greeted many of our party, these were not the rooms shown to the family when initially booking the wedding! The smell of damp was obvious, filthy bathroom floors and broken beds, not the sort of service you expect when paying £120- £170 per night!!! Waiting staff and bar staff were all polite and done a great job looking after us all throughout the day and evening, they truly are the hotels only credit. Being the sort of family we are we didn't let the poor service by management and our less than satisfactorily rooms hinder our celebrations and we continued to have a fabulous day. The next morning the same male manager ignored all the wedding party including the bride and groom, he never thanked us or enquirer after our stay. Unfortunately the newlyweds daughter was unwell and they had to arrange a trip to hospital, no help was offered by staff. Nobody was offered help with luggage or with all the gifts and flowers that needed to be packed into cars. Not a single thankyou offered for using The Oaklands for the location for their special day. Another grievance had was that staff removed the bottles of wine off the dinner tables that had been paid for as part of the wedding package and went on to put them behind the bar and sell them on! The Hotel is very run down and dirty in some places, it is in need of a serious make over. The real problem that needs addressing in the poor customer service and attitude of management, it really left us disgusted. the rooms are well over priced, and some are clearly not even suitable to have guests staying in them due to the health dangers they pose. Will definitely not be staying there again!!!!

  • Stayed: June 2013
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Thank amy p
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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563 - 569 of 799 reviews

Reviewed June 7, 2013

We stayed at this hotel but were very dismayed at the hygiene(or lack) of it. Our room was very dated and tired. Fair enough but the room was dirty especially the bathroom and toilet. The dated bathroom couldn't boast of a sink plug or working hairdryer. The hair dryer kept stopping and starting so I phoned for a replacement. I had to make 3 calls before the replacement eventually turned up. On arrival, we tried to have a shower but it was a mere dribble. I told reception and they said that they would send a man to fix it. However in the evening when I tried again, it was marginally better, but the water got so hot I couldn't control the temperature to remove the shampoo and conditioner from my wet hair!! As a last resort, I filled up the bath and removed the suds using a glass. Not an experience that I would choose to pay for at weekends!! The toilet was black at the bottom which could have been removed with a huge glug of bleach and elbow grease!! It will not be a place to be recommended to friends and family. It was hugely disappointing as we had looked forward to our stay for some time.

  • Stayed: May 2013, traveled with friends
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1  Thank lea t
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 2, 2013

I think that you would be pushed to find a worse hotel to stay at anywhere. Even Basil Fawlty would have been ashamed. I can put up with dated furniture and fixtures (which they have a plenty) - that's each persons individual taste - but what I can't put up with is a clearly dirty room.

Having paid extra to check in early (£20), and having been charged per night (in advance on checking in) nearly double for just B&B as guests of a wedding to the rate the website was offering for dinner, bed and breakfast on that same evening, I was shocked when I went to our room at the state of it. The carpet was filthy- covered in brown stains; the dressing table stool was completely disgusting - so much so I wouldn't sit on it even fully clothed - heaven knows what some of the stains were - and the one chair in the room was in a similar state. The toilet wouldn't flush, the bathroom tiles grouting were covered in mould, the light would only work if you left it to think about it for 5 minutes. The whole hotel stinks of cooking and stale food in the upstairs corridors, and the carpets are completely threadbare in places. I would have checked out immediately and moved to another hotel if it wasn't that the wedding we were attending was being held there and I felt to do so would have been rude to the bridal couple.

The staff are inept - if you can find a member of staff in the first place... and when I complained about the state of the room I was met with a blank stare - no apology - and a "we do take feedback seriously.."

To give it its due the food at the wedding breakfast was pleasant enough and the function waiting staff obviously more experienced and helpful than the other members of staff but the food in the actual restaurant for breakfast was decidedly less than average.

The hotel has a lovely garden with mature trees and is quite quiet and there is outside seating but like the rest of the hotel they were dirty - the cleaners should clean any bird droppings off them at the start of the day before guests arrive so that the chairs can be used rather than having to be avoided for fear of stains.

Our friends had similar issues - a shower that didn't work - mould in the bathroom - no sink plug - a hairdryer that didn't work and the bathroom light switch broke off in their hand - they even found a cufflink under their bed.

The hotel needs a full refurbishment - bedrooms and public areas- if the owners want to live up to their website and be the best hotel in Norwich then they have a long long way to go.

All in all - do not waste your money - there are far better hotels in Norwich.

Room Tip: Try a garden view room
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  • Stayed: June 2013, traveled with friends
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1  Thank Karen013
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed May 28, 2013

Stayed here after booking a deal through Groupon and can't recommend it more! Fantastic room very comfortable with a large bathroom and lounge area. Champagne and chocolate dipped strawberries on arrival along with petals strewn across the bed and massage oil etc!! Brilliant food in the restaurant and can't see what the previous reviews were complaining about honestly they must have been very very fussy and that is coming from someone who loves their food!

  • Stayed: August 2012, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank Whackerv23
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed May 21, 2013

My Wife and I stayed at this hotel to attend a family wedding. Mostly it was very good but I would suggest the receptionist that greeted us on arrival takes a customer care course!!
We got greeted with "what's your name, sign this form". Although the hotel had my Visa card details, the receptionist insisted that I paid for our the two nights stay in advance. This is the first time that I have had to do this.
Not a good start !

There was no, "Enjoy your stay with us and if you require anything don't hesitate to ask", which would have been very nice.

The wedding breakfast we had was excellent and the waitress that served us was also very kind and friendly.
Our wedding shared the bar with the restaurant, which had only two bar people serving, so the service was very slow.

Our room was comfortable and clean and had a very nice view.

The food in the restaurant was excellent, especially the Carvery. The service here was very good.

I would stay here again

Room Tip: Rooms at the rear, overlooking the gardens, are very good.
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  • Stayed: May 2013, traveled with family
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Thank Kenneth A
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed May 20, 2013

I booked a 'Luxury Lodge' for three nights as the website said.....

"For the business traveller we have added additional features including hi-tech facilities such as plasma television screens, DVD players and wireless internet with a large desk and board room style chair."

On arriving there was no internet access so spoke to receptionist who said she'd get it fixed. Day two - no internet. Day three - no internet, so decided not to stay the third night. I shared my disappointment to the manager and checked out (after two nights of the three) - would they refund my third night - nope - I had to give 48 hours notice as per their cancellation policy !

I could go one about the thin walls and cheap furniture of the 'Luxury Lodges', or the fact I found wine corks on the floor (so obviously the cleaner was having an off day), ......... but I wont. Suffice to say ..........

...this is not a place to stay on business, not a luxury environment and no customer service lessons to be learnt.

  • Stayed: May 2013, traveled on business
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2  Thank tmarven
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed May 6, 2013

I visited this hotel with a wedding party a few months ago. Two weddings had booked the whole hotel, and by coincidence, I was invited to both.
Anything else aside, food/location etc, my main gripe is this. I was heavily pregnant when visiting this hotel. After the nuptials, our wedding party was ushered into a small bar area whilst our dining room was prepared (I guess).
Being heavy and tired, I sat down at a table with my partner. After a short time, a waitress came over and accused me of removing a reserved sign. I had done no such thing. She told me I would have to move, regardless of it being the only seat available, as the manager's wife needed to sit there. Erm, sorry, what? We were paying guests at a wedding that had hired the facilities. What kind of person thinks this is good business conduct? I duly moved, and eventually some older ladies came out, sat down and had coffee in the middle of everything.
So to put it bluntly, I was a guest at a wedding, heavily pregnant, and told to shift it so the manager's wife could have a gossip.
If this is their attitude, do not bother visiting.

  • Stayed: September 2012, traveled with friends
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1  Thank longcoatcrinkle
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Best Western Plus Oaklands Hotel

Address: 89 Yarmouth Road, Norwich NR7 0HH, England (Formerly The Oaklands Hotel)
Location: United Kingdom > England > East Anglia > Norfolk > Norwich
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Center with Internet Access Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #22 of 50 Hotels in Norwich
Price Range: $63 - $137 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:3 star — Best Western Plus Oaklands Hotel 3*
Number of rooms: 37
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
A warm welcome awaits you as we invite you to join us at the Oaklands Hotel Norwich and enjoy the charm of a family owned hotel combining a modern style with a great location. The hotel has recently completed a major refurbishment of their dining room and bar including an extension featuring a sky line and byfold doors leading onto the stunning new terrace. All bedrooms have also been refurbished offering an array of modern and stylish rooms with a unique finish. Situated on the outskirts of Norwich (just over one mile from the City centre), the Oaklands Hotel provides a unique and relaxed atmosphere. Comfortable and relaxed surroundings, a variety of bedrooms to suit all guests, chilled out bar and terrace, beautiful grounds overlooking the Yare River Valley and ample parking all combine to offer the perfect backdrop whether you are visitng for a leisure break, business or a wedding. A visit to the Oaklands Hotel is always a memorable one whether your stay is for business or pleasure, for a formal occasion or one of our fantastic breaks. A friendly welcome and attentive customer service, comfortable and uniquely decorated bedrooms and delicious food is what we offer our guests - and the reason why they return time and time again. And, you don't have to be staying the night to enjoy our charm - join us for breakfast, afternoon tea, lunch or dinner - or just take time out to chill out in our stunning bar or beautiful terrace with an ice-cold drink. Breakfast is included in our bedroom rates and we also offer guests free car parking and free internet access. We're sure you'll want to come back for more. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Oaklands Hotel Norwich

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