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“I could become a habitual offender”

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Malmaison Oxford Castle
Ranked #6 of 44 Hotels in Oxford
Certificate of Excellence
Oxfordshire
1 review
“I could become a habitual offender”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed March 9, 2010

I booked a Saturday night stay in a superior room and a table for two in the bistro - the first pleasant surprise was to find that we had been upgraded to a (fantastic) duplex suite, the second was the quality of the bistro. There are a few reviews on this site suggesting that the restaurant isn't up to the standard of the rest of the hotel, which made me slightly nervous about eating there, but overall, it was excellent - good food, a huge wine list, attentive staff and a great ambiance. The restaurant is possibly a little over-priced, but for a city center boutique hotel, not outrageously so. The staff were helpful (if slightly vague in the cocktail bar), and always friendly. And as the for the bed, (the beds have drawn a lot of comment), it might have been a bit firm but didn't stop me getting a good night's sleep. Overall, I loved it, and can't wait to go back. Highly recommended.

  • Stayed March 2010, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
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Helpful?
Thank IsaacAzimuth
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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2,844 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    3.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
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Antibes, France
Level Contributor
27 reviews
18 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 37 helpful votes
2 of 5 bubbles Reviewed March 8, 2010

We stayed at this hotel for 1 night between Christmas and New Year, and thought that staying in an ex-prison in a cell sounded pretty special.
We booked online choosing one of their deals, 2 course dinner with wine and room.
Room seemed fine, a bit small, but ok, but wasn't in the cellblocks at all. It was in a new building across a yard so was hugely dissapointed about that.
There was no wifi as advertised anywhere in the hotel, they told me they had been having problems with the system for a while and were in the process of changing it.
We were given a choice of 6pm or 9pm for dinner, far too early and too late, but we chose 9pm and were not given a table till 9.20, although there seemed to be many tables available. The 2 course dinner was a choice of 2 starters and 2 mains and nothing from the normal menu, and for the wine they just asked if we wanted red or white..no other choice eg: Sav blanc, chardonnay etc. The food was fine but we felt a bit like 2nd class diners!
The morning was the worst as we were woken up early by a huge noise outside the window, and when we looked we saw a rubbish truck heaving all the big green bins into the back, then the kitchen staff were constantly wheeling bins back and forth, some full of bottles, it was incredibly noisey.
I'm sure staying in the cellblock would have been a lovely experience but be aware of the deals that they advertise online!

  • Stayed December 2009, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
Thank Michelle B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
ManagerMalOxford, Manager at Malmaison Oxford Castle, responded to this review, March 11, 2010
Thank-you for leaving your feedback and regarding your recent stay at Malmaison Oxford, although it is never encouraging to receive negative comments this information is vital to monitoring our guests experiences. The Malmaison Oxford is a former prison therefore its design is very unique to ensure that we make the most of the original features. We would be delighted if you could get in contact with us to discuss these details. Please contact dgm.oxford@malmaison.com
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Oxfordshire, UK
Level Contributor
15 reviews
13 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 20 helpful votes
2 of 5 bubbles Reviewed March 8, 2010

Stayed for a weekend with my partner and expected a lot as have stayed in Malmaison hotels before and always liked them however,

£210 for a very cold dimly lit room

Requested early check in and room still wasn't ready at 3.00 in the afternoon which is a late check in time by most hotel standards

Staff were unhelpful and a little arrogant

This hotel does not measure up to the standards of The Old Parsonage or The Randolph and i wouldn't go back.

  • Stayed March 2010, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Symze
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
ManagerMalOxford, Manager at Malmaison Oxford Castle, responded to this review, March 11, 2010
Thank-you for leaving your feedback and regarding your recent stay at Malmaison Oxford, although it is never encouraging to receive negative comments this information is vital to monitoring our guests experiences. The Malmaison Oxford is a former prison therefore its design is very unique to ensure that we make the most of the original features. We would be delighted if you could get in contact with us to discuss these details. Please contact dgm.oxford@malmaison.com
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Leeds
Level Contributor
38 reviews
19 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 34 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed March 5, 2010

My boyfriend and I stayed at this hotel just after New Year 2009. We had got a good offer through lastminute.com and the quirkyness of the hotel (being situated in an old prison) appealed to us. Check in was smooth, although our room wasn't ready when we arrived, however this wasn't a problem as our luggage was stored safely. My only gripe at this stage is that there is no parking available at the hotel, so we had to drive round Oxford and park in a multi-storey. Not ideal. Our room was in the newer section of the hotel, so we did not have the old-style door features etc. The room was compact however very clean and comfortable. Drinks were had in the bar which was very pleasant and quite funky. We did not eat in the restaurant however I have eaten at the Malmaison in Leeds which is lovely. The hotel is a great location for exploring Oxford and there are numerous restuarants and bars within a minutes walk. Carluccios round the corner is great for a buffet breakfast. Back to the hotel! Our shower leaked dreafully and the handle even fell of the shower control. We reported this when we arrived and were told that someone would come look at it. The next day someone had still not been. We were assured that someone would come whilst we were out, however after a full day out we got back and found that it was still not repaired. In the end we had two nights of cold showers. This is not what I expect from such a well regarded hotel chain. Overall a lovely hotel with plenty of character, however the customer service left a lot to be desired.

  • Stayed January 2009, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank brownbearLeeds
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
ManagerMalOxford, Manager at Malmaison Oxford Castle, responded to this review, March 11, 2010
Thank-you for leaving your feedback and regarding your recent stay at Malmaison Oxford, although it is never encouraging to receive negative comments this information is vital to monitoring our guests experiences. We would be delighted if you could get in contact with us to discuss these details. Please contact dgm.oxford@malmaison.com
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London
Level Contributor
7 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed March 3, 2010

My friend and I ordered a steak and a burger but were told that on 'health and safety 'grounds, they cannot - and will not - cook meat 'rare'. We were of course taken aback to be told that we could not have our food cooked how we wished and that we had no choice but to order it medium. However, when it arrived, it was burnt to a cinder with a strong acrid smell and was basically inedible. We complained and the manager took the items off the bill. In addition, our waitress was so abrupt and unfriendly, we also requested they removed the service charge off which they did. They also play pop music quite loudly in there which spoiled the relaxing atmosphere. Despite the poor food and service in the brasserie, , Malmaison is well worth a stay to see the fascinating prison architecture and to have a drink in the beautiful, stylish bar. I agree that the rooms are too warm and wouldnt recommend more than one night. However, don't bother eating in the brasserie, find somewhere else to eat in Oxford.

  • Stayed March 2010, traveled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Kix123
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
ManagerMalOxford, Manager at Malmaison Oxford Castle, responded to this review, March 11, 2010
Many thanks for the feedback following your recent stay with us at Malmaison Oxford.

All of our burgers and steaks are of a high quality and sourcing our suppliers is high on our agenda to ensure we offer only the best.

As a busy Brasserie we have to take all recommendations from the local EHO very seriously, who have informed us to not allow the cooking temperature to be less than medium to well done.

On the evening as a gesture of good will, the two items were removed from the final bill and complimentary desserts were provided, which I hope you appreciated.

Ambiance is hugely important to our Brasserie’s in order for us to set a comfortable and enjoyable environment. All lighting and music levels are controlled to reflect this throughout. Our song lists are selected and updated on a regular basis by our Director of Vibe for the group to ensure all hotels play appropriate music which is in keeping with our brand.

I am pleased to hear that you thoroughly enjoyed the unique conversion of a former prison into the Malmaison. We look forward to welcoming you back again soon.

Kind Regards

Mal Oxford
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Moscow, Russia
Level Contributor
21 reviews
16 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 12 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed March 2, 2010

The hotel is located in a building that was a prison before mid-1990s. Now it's a nice upscale trendy place with fun rooms that used to be prison cells. Not spooky at all, but you may choose rooms that were never used for prisoners. Rooms are good, clean, modern and very comfortable. Location is unbeatable.
Service is very good and staff is helpful and friendly. There is a great guest lounge that used to be a visiting room and now has a good bar. Highly recommend. There should be also a french brasserie and room service for food.
Hotel offers valet parking for a fee of around 15 or 20 Pounds per 24h.
The overall experience is very good and it's something you'll want to tell your friends about.

  • Stayed January 2010, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
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    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
Thank Ribakit
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Nottingham
Level Contributor
8 reviews
8 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed February 27, 2010

I stayed here in Novemeber 2008, and had such a lovely stay - it was perfect!

I will be going back to Oxford and back to Malmaison. It's not like any other place I have stayed.

Drinks at the bar were a bit expensive, but lots of places to eat and drink nearby.

A MUST do hotel.

  • Stayed November 2008, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
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    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank WizzingAround
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Malmaison Oxford Castle

Property: Malmaison Oxford Castle
Address: 3 Oxford Castle, Oxford OX1 1AY, England
Location: United Kingdom > England > Oxfordshire > Oxford
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Suites Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#5 Luxury Hotel in Oxford
#5 Business Hotel in Oxford
#9 Romantic Hotel in Oxford
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:4 star — Malmaison Oxford Castle 4*
Number of rooms: 95
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
If you're tired of doing hard time in run-of-the-mill hotels, it's a completely different story at our former gaol, Malmaison Oxford. Instead sip the coolest cocktails in the free world at MALBAR and enjoy an eclectic mix of classic dishes with a twist at the Brasserie, from freshly caught fish to the famous Mal Burger. Good behaviour will get you privileges like free Wi-Fi, drench showers, plasma TVs and and even toiletries that are just begging to be nabbed by light-fingered guests. This is one hotel in Oxford city centre where you'll be happy to get a long stretch. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Malmaison Oxford Castle Hotel Oxford
Malmaison Hotel Oxford

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