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“Stay Away From This Hotel (And Manchester Airport's lastminute.com)”

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Britannia Country House Hotel & Spa
Ranked #88 of 117 Hotels in Manchester
Niagara-on-the-Lake, Canada
Level Contributor
19 reviews
17 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 28 helpful votes
“Stay Away From This Hotel (And Manchester Airport's lastminute.com)”
Reviewed November 16, 2007

I was booked into the Britannia by the lastminute.com hotel booking wicket at the Manchester International Airport. Now I know why the lady at the reservation outlet claimed everywhere else was fully booked and full. No one would voluntarily or knowingly choose Britannia Country House Hotel Manchester.

The hotel is unstrategically located on an off road somewhere between the city and the airport. The facade indicates that it was cobbled together from several adjacent buildings.

Problem number one was highlighted immediately upon arrival. While a parking lot is sold as one of the hotel's features finding an available spot is improbable. Having circled the place several times and grabbed a tight rare spot the sight of many signs warning against theft and vandalism was the first of many worries. Having booked the room an hour earlier at the airport I was rebuked by the girl at the reception for... asking to check in. I apparently had two problems. One was how I had the nerve to check in at noon! Apparently, the lastminute.com employee had forgotten to warn me I cannot enter my room for another three hours having just flown in from across the Atlantic Ocean. The further rude receptionist had more to offer though. She explained to me that my reservation is not in the system and dished further attitude by incredibly noting that reservations take longer than an hour to enter their systems. She apparently is unaware of the speed of electronic transactions or e-mail or computer systems or networks or how the airport lady had telephoned in my reservation! Hilarious. Ignoring her surly attitude I shuffled my suitcase to my room (the lift was out of order) after much waiting.

It was immediately obvious that the carpeting's age matches the building. I could practically see the biscuit crumbs left over by the original Victorian residents. At least, the bathroom seemed renovated. Did that make up for the grimy room? Somehow.

The room needed to be heated, this being November, but that was not the case. The faded carpet, lack of parking spots and snarly receptionist dissuaded me against calling downstairs to complain. Not that there would have been a point. When hours later I called the reception to enquire about the "all rooms have access to Satellite TV channels" advertisement in the room booklet I was met by silence. That is, the reception/office would not answer the telephone. Not kidding folks. Safe to say, that one is restricted to the standard over-the-air channels, which is not a big deal in itself were it not noted otherwise in the room.

The buffet breakfast was a delight after all the other and assorted disappointments, but hardly enough to hide my glee from departing first thing in the morning. £69.95 (+ 10% for the reservation wicket's service) later and a disappointing stay I was off and happier.

  • Liked — The breakfast was decent
  • Disliked — The under-staffed distaff of a staff treated guests as pests
  • Stayed November 2007, traveled solo
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
3 Thank dadada767
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Rating summary
  • Location
  • Sleep Quality
  • Rooms
  • Service
  • Value
  • Cleanliness
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Scotland
Level Contributor
33 reviews
26 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 29 helpful votes
Reviewed November 15, 2007

I booked two rooms as a stopover hotel as I was travelling to Egypt. On check in at 11pm, I was not greeted by the male receptionist. Once he had finished typing on the computer, he acknowledged me. We were given our keys and proceeded through a long corridor where there were signs appologising for inconvenience during refurbishment. When I got to my room the door which should have ben white was thick with black dirt. Once inside the flowery bedcovers smelt of damp and the room was covered in dust. The green bathroom suite was very dirty also. My parents room was no better. As it was late I decided to say nothing and wait and see what our rooms would be like on our return trip. After a long flight, we checked in at 11pm. I was given rooms in the newer part of the building and was pleased. The room was sapcious and apart from the flowery decor it was clean and presentable. I even had a jacuzzi bath and a front view. I did not receive the wake up call I had asked for and when I went to reception I found out why. When my parents had checked in to their room, it had not been cleaned so they were given another room and subsequently the wake up calls had been cancelled by the computer. The staff at this hotel are in desperate need of cutomer service training. Cleanliness is also another factor which needs attention. I work as a hotel receptionist and I would cringe sending guests to these rooms and certainly would not ignore guests on arrival.

  • Liked — Leaving
  • Disliked — Everything
  • Stayed October 2007, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank AvidTraveller1975
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Stranraer, United Kingdom
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
Reviewed November 8, 2007

On entering the hotel grounds there were nine cars which had been broken into. The car park was hectic - we eventually found a space on our seventh time around the grounds. The hotel was grubby and in need of some TLC and a great deal of money spent on it. The staff didn't have a clue - We had pre-booked the dinner and breakfast package which was actually more expensive than paying for the food on site. The food was cold, no potatoes or vag, no plates, no sweet. The hotel tried to charge us again for dinner, The two girls behind the bar were scamming - two tills charging almost a pound in difference for the same two drinks - on the more expensive till the girl wrote on a pad of paper every time she served - to keep the tally of her overcharging! The room had a big jaccuzzi bath with a huge crack in it and the jaccuzzi didn't work. At breakfast the food was again cold and again they tried to charge us, interrupting our breakfast to tell us that we hadn't paid. It took four staff at the door of the restaurant to try and get the money out of us until finally one said she would fix it - to which I replied that she wasn't doing me a favour since I'd already paid and couldn't eat my breakfast for being so upset.
This was truly the worst hotel I've ever visited and I would rather sleep in my car than enter this hotel again. A horrible and stressful way to begin my holiday.

  • Liked — Leaving
  • Disliked — Staff
  • Stayed October 2007, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
3 Thank buggyboy
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Banbury, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
5 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
Reviewed November 6, 2007

I booked this hotel with parking for 10 nights. When we arrived we had great difficulty finding a parking space. The spaces are very close together, making it difficult to unload cases etc. without touching the vehicle next door. The accommodation was lovely and we enjoyed our night at the hotel before heading for the airport. We had an early start along with many other guests. The coach arrived to transfer the guests, but unfortunately there was not enough room on the coach for everyone and about 10 of us had to wait for taxis. When we arrived back in the UK I telephoned to ask what time the next coach would be and was told that it would be another hour! Having had a 24 hour delay and a 4 hour journey ahead we decided to get a taxi, and this cost almost £12. I would use the hotel again, but not the parking.

  • Liked — Location to Manchester airport
  • Disliked — The courtesy coach service
  • Stayed October 2007, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank Lulu046
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
newcastle
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed November 2, 2007

stayed on a saturday night with my wife and another couple, on arrival the reception staff were helpfull and reception looked ok, but on arrival in our rooms we were greeted with the smell of damp, carpets held together with tape a cracked bath and 1960s decor. After dropping our bags and heading straight into town for a conference we returned to the hotel after a meal at about 11:30pm to be greeted by chaos, children running wild all over the reception, bar, stairs and lifts, groups of very drunk football fans from old trafford, just basically not a nice experience.
I have decided to post these comments due to the fact that having complained to the hotel group we were just given no joy.
PLEASE SAVE YOURSELF THE EXPERIENCE AND DO NOT BOOK !!!

  • Liked — leaving the next day
  • Disliked — everything
  • Stayed October 2007, traveled on business
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank sacnewcastle
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
rutland
Level Contributor
6 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
Reviewed October 29, 2007

almost cancelled after reading other reviews but glad we didn't.Had 3 rooms,2 triples and one twin.the former were great,one king size and one double in each room.Huge jaccuzzi baths,lovely toileteries loads of goodies on the hospitality tray.The twin was in the old part and not so great but perfectly adequate.
We had a really early start for the airport and the electricilty was due to be off between 01.30 and 04.00 for essentail maintenance work.the staff were wonderful and were on each corridor to help with cases etc:
all in all well worth the money..transfers very good too.

Stayed October 2007
Helpful?
1 Thank rutlandskier
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Monaghan, Ireland
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
Reviewed October 21, 2007

Just spent Friday night in this hotel with a coach party on a shopping trip in Manchester. This hotel is awful, reception area looks good but that's were it ends. The rooms are tiny, damp, dingy, very badly in need of refurbishment. The radiators weren't working in practically all of the rooms in our party and it took almost four hours of complaining before we were given blow heaters for the rooms. Dined in the restaurant, one waiter was pleasant but the rest were definitely not, asked for tea with dessert and was rudely told that they did not serve tea, go to the bar next door and buy it!! Went to bar, paid and had to make it myself!!!!! The food was just ok, verging on the tasteless but maybe I had lost the will to live at this point. The breakfast was better, thankfully. The only good point was that there was plenty of hot water. Overall I would recommend that nobody ever stays here again, it was terrible and the staff response was in no way satisfactory.

  • Liked — Nothing
  • Disliked — Everything
  • Stayed October 2007
    • Value
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank hh76
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Britannia Country House Hotel & Spa

Property: Britannia Country House Hotel & Spa
Address: Palatine Road | Didsbury, Manchester M20 2WG, England
Location: United Kingdom > England > Greater Manchester > Manchester
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Parking Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Spa Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#8 Spa Hotel in Manchester
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Hotel Class:3 star — Britannia Country House Hotel & Spa 3*
Number of rooms: 255
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The Britannia Country House Hotel & Spa has a wide range of facilities including two restaurants, free parking for up to 600 spaces, free WI-Fi and also has a gym and spa. All rooms have tea and coffee making facilities, in addition to a TV, telephone, suit press and a hairdryer. All bathrooms include both a shower and bath. It is perfectly located for any visit to Manchester, being within a 10 minute drive of Manchester Airport, as well as only 20 minutes' drive away from Manchester City Centre, Manchester United Football Club and the second largest shopping centre in the UK - the Trafford Centre. Getting to the hotel couldn't be much easier, as it is only a 2 minute drive to the M60 motorway. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Britannia Country Manchester
Britannia Country Hotel

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