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The Garden House Inn
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Reviews (254)
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All reviewsthe pubhaggis scotch eggcounty hallside saladtwo double bedsshort walk to the city centrereal alemashcooked to perfectionsunday lunchsteakconvenient locationstayed for two nightsan evening mealyogurtbreakfast was excellentcar park
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Reviewed October 26, 2012

I am a frequent traveller through business and stay in many hotels consisting of top rated chains and family owned businesses. I visited this place with a colleague from Germany as I wanted to give him a taste of Britain-the reviews looked great (apart from twgenf whom in my opinion should have remembered their own key!!).

Fabulous place for the cost- the food was excellent. I would describe it as proper British fair with an elegant twist. The best thing about the Garden House Inn has to be the staff however. We were shown to our rooms by a lovely girl to begin with and were then treated to some great Northern hosting. The owner is a great guy with stories to tell and a warm friendly manner.

Breakfast was a simple continental type fair with cheeses and well selected meats/breads/juices. It was actually a very nice change from the usual stodge or overly cooked beans and tepid bacon to which you become accustomed in the normal big chains....

Rooms were modern and comfortable- as expected with a family run B&B. Its a short walk to the centre of Durham so if you are a sole traveller then it may be the only down side but I am sure the staff would help you find a taxi and look out for you!

I shall return next time I am in the North East. Worth a visit!

  • Stayed: October 2012, traveled on business
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2  Thank Jasmin M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed October 11, 2012

I was on a business trip and chosen this place to stay because I wanted to find somewhere whereby there is a nice pub/restaurant with reasonable price. I saw their menu and noticed that it is not just the usual pub menu which I was a bit sick of after a week of pub food. And from the photos, the rooms look quite stylish too.

When I first arrived, I was a bit disappointed with the fact that I couldn't get Wi-Fi in the room. It's my fault that I didn't check the hotel facilities properly. I hope that they will one day get Wi-Fi in the rooms because that will encourage more people to stay there for business purposes.

This place is not like those high class hotels whereby the staffs are usually very serious. The staffs and the owner were very friendly and their hospitality made me feel at home. I was having sore throat and the staffs kindly made me some lemon and honey. One of them even offered me some sweets to help soothe the throat too!!!

And their food was fabulous!!! Very creative menu and nice presentation too!!! I'm a food lover and very picky about food too. I had monkfish and king prawn with Toulouse sausage stew. The seafood was cooked to perfection though I think they forgot to add the Toulouse sausage. On the second night, I had lamb rack and mash recommended by the staff and again it was very well cooked. It was pink and tender. And the mash was really fluffy and creamy though could be warmer. I have not had such nice mash for a long time!!!! And the third day, I had duck leg with wine sauce and bacon and bean stew. The duck leg is also very tender too but slightly salty. Overall, I was very happy with my dinners. I was always looking forward to my dinner at the restaurant during my stay. I will definitely bring my other colleagues to try out their restaurant next time! Keep it up chef!!

Room Tip: The inn is located at busy streets. It was a bit noisy though didn't bother me at all.
  • Stayed: October 2012, traveled on business
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Thank ManguMonkey
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed October 11, 2012

Have just stayed here for two nights. The room was clean and comfortable, the continental breakfast very good. We ate in the first night, we both had the fish and chips which were excellent. The hotel is a short walk into the centre of Durham and we think that the location is ideal. If we return to Durham we will certainly book into the Garden House Inn again.

  • Stayed: October 2012, traveled as a couple
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Thank Sally D
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed October 10, 2012

We have tried a number of places to stay during the time that our daughter has been a student in Durham and this is the latest one. We have found that there are not many restaurants open in Durham on a Sunday evening and we saw the excellent reviews of the food here so we decided to give it a try as a place to stay and eat. Unfortunately on arrival we found that the restaurant was closed on Sunday evenings, although the information on opening times on their website is a little vague. We booked through Laterooms and stated that we would like to eat in the restaurant in the comments section of the booking page, but I suppose we should have called and specifically booked, whereby we would have been told that it was closed.

We made the best of things and took the 10 minute walk back into town to eat at one of the fast food venues by the theatre. The walk back up the hill in the dark is not scenic or pleasant next to the busy road.

Our room was well appointed and tastefully decorated, but this is primarily a pub and our room was above the bar where the regular Sunday evening Quiz Night was going on and we could hear the quiz master on his microphone quite clearly in our room. Thankfully it didn't go on too late.

We were also a bit disappointed with breakfast which was only a continental breakfast of cold meat and cheese with a standard selection of cereals and juices.

All in all, it is a clean and comfortable place to stay, within walking distance of the town, but we will revert to our regular favourite next time - Farnley Tower.

  • Stayed: October 2012, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank EKFleet
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed September 30, 2012 via mobile

Never once in life had I been this angry and disappointed with a hotel management.

I am not snotty type when it comes to hotel accommodation. And generally quite understanding and supportive of local business owners. Based on this very reason and good reviews on both booking.com as well as Tripadvisor, we booked a room at the Garden House Inn for our friend's wedding at the end of September, 2012.

We arrived in the morning on the wedding day after flying from Geneva the night before and an early train ride from London Kings Cross to Durham. Since the wedding started at 1pm and our taxi was booked at 12pm to take us to a church outside Durham, we kindly emailed the management before we arrived whether we could check in earlier to get ready for the wedding. The room wasn't early yet, but the management back then was very kind to let us get changed in the room and drop our belongs there before finishing cleaning the room.

Off we went to the wedding. However, we didn't realize the wedding reception was in Darlington, a nearby town. We were taken there by coach, and didn't come back to Durham with all the other people until half past midnight.

We then got a taxi from Raddison Blu where most other people stayed back to the inn, only to find there was NO ONE ANSWERED THE DOOR AND OUR PHONE CALLS, AND NO EMERGENCY NUMBER TO CALL EITHER.

And we hadn't got our key yet.

After several attempts to get in touch, we had to give up and ask our friends whether we could stay with them at Raddison Blu. We then stayed in different rooms and slept on the floor with coats as makeshift covers. Needless to say we only got minimal sleep.

When we got back to the inn the next morning and finally got our key to get into the room then shower and change, we were informed by the owner that we still had to pay two thirds of the bill (60 pounds) as it was NOT his responsibility to call us using the number left on booking.com to inform us that the bar closes at midnight and to make arrangements for us to get the key, even if he knew we had arrived and our belongings were in the room.

The reasoning was ludicrous to me. The attitude was exasperating. Because he felt absolutely innocent about the fact that no one tried even once to call us before the bar closed and everyone at the reception whisked off home, leaving us in this ridiculous no-key situation.

Nonetheless, we then paid 60 quid since we didn't want to make a scene at the inn. But we have called hooking.com to report our experience and booking.com has stepped in.

YOU ARE ASKED TO GIVE YOUR NUMBER WHEN MAKING YOUR RESERVATION FOR A REASON.

Booking.com has the "no show" policy for customers who fail to turn up on the booked date, which means the first night's or sometimes the entire booked stay's fee will be charged on your credit card. How about a "no show" of the hotel reception and no means to get in touch with them? Which I think is a joke.

Oh, by the way, if you pay the same price, you can stay at Raddison Blu, which is right by the river and you are guaranteed to get your key!

  • Stayed: September 2012
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4  Thank twgenf
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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