We have just returned from a 3 day stay at the Swan 'hotel' in Arundel. However to be clear (unlike the fullers website) this is NOT a hotel, it is a pub with rooms. No lounge-no dining room.
I have stayed at Fullers establishments previously, both hotels and inns, so booked an executive room with confidence, for a special birhtday weekend.
We knew in advance that there is no designated car park-you pay £7.00 per day to park behind the swan.
We were greeted in the bar with a warm smile and asked if we had been told that there was an elvis tribute night, that night? Urmm...no we hadn't been told-and I had spoken to the hotel 3 times before arriving (chasing a confirmation email). Regretably Elvis set up his amps directly under our room and thundered out songs until 23.00hrs-with music then played very loudly through the amp until midnight. If we had been notified of this we would probably have booked elsewhere-as we travelled down straight from work, booked an early supper and planned an early night.
The executive room was a large double aspect room. Shabby armchairs and tired soft furnishings. However the room was clean and the view of the high street, pretty. The welcome tray was well stocked and fresh milk was provided in a small flask. A small flat screen TV completed the room-4 channels only.
The en-suite bathroom, was a window less box in the corner of the room. The mildew and mould around the bath and up the wall was unbelievable-the bath was stained grey/black. The over bath shower was a hose attached to the bath taps and the water pressure was poor.
These rooms are marketed at £100+ a night!
I discussed the rooms and the loud music with the assistant manager, Sean, who immediately offered us alternative 'non-executive' accomodation, with a new bathroom-but no shower at all. He suggested that we could move rooms, or simply use the bathroom-neither options were ideal. We opted to stay put and enjoy our weekend.
Breakfast is a self service cereal/fruit affair with the hot breakfast served by the waitress. Apart from having to wait for bowls and spoons, tea being served as a teabag in a mug (as opposed to a teapot), burnt, brittle and cold toast-breakfast was ok. It is served in an area just off the main bar. On 2 of the 3 mornings we ate breakfast to the aroma of strong disinfectant-as the bar floor was been washed at the same time!
On a positive note, the staff were simply delightful. From checking in til check out-service was accompanied by a smile. Sean, the assistant manager deserves a special mention, he dealt with my complaint promptly, professiionally and did not hesitate to discount the bill accordingly.
Apparently the Swan is having a million pound upgrade in January 2011-this is certainly long overdue, as, at the moment it is undoubtably is the thorn in the fuller groups crown. I really do feel that once upgraded, it should be renamed 'The Swan'-drop the hotel-then it just might stand a chance of 'doing what it says on the tin'!
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- In the heart of the West Sussex market town of Arundel, The Swan Hotel is a traditional country pub with 14 stylish ensuite rooms. Full English breakfast with local sausages, fish and chips and drinks, The Swan Hotel really is one of the town's hottest eateries. Free wifi. ... more less
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