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“The Grafton House is A Wonderful Place to Stay” 5 of 5 bubbles
Review of Grafton House Hotel

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Grafton House Hotel
Ranked #16 of 19 Hotels in Durham
Edinburgh, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
14 reviews
14 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 24 helpful votes
“The Grafton House is A Wonderful Place to Stay”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed November 16, 2008

I have stayed at this hotel 3 times already while travelling on business and therefore the benefits for me might be different than for other people. What I like about this hotel is that they remember my name, they pay attention to the small details like freshly baked cookies in the reception area and cool Michael Buble on the radio. The view of the castle while walking up to the hotel is just gorgeous. I have had the pleasure of staying both in the Castle Suite (which is to die for with the huge tub and view of the Cathedral) and normal rooms. What I can say about any of them is that the beds are extremely comfortable and the rooms are clean.

I agree with others that there is room for improvement in the restaurant. The breakfast is great but dinner is a bit overpriced for the quality offered. That is not an issue though as the hotel is so central. Just take a lovely stroll into the town centre and eat at any number of places. No big deal!

Definitely worth staying here and the staff are just lovely.

  • Liked — The bed
  • Disliked — Nothing
  • Stayed November 2008, traveled on business
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Check in / front desk
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
1 Thank Jennifer G
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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17 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
    7
    3
    2
    5
    0
See reviews for
2
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Rating summary
  • Sleep Quality
    5 of 5 bubbles
  • Location
    4.5 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
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Any
English first
Leeds
Level Contributor
9 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed November 10, 2008

What a lovely hotel. We really enjoyed our stay here. The room, (the castle suite), was wonderful - clean and large with a very comfy bed and lots of pillows. The bathroom was great with a huge bath and shower and very fluffy towels. The staff were also lovely and very helpful. We ate in the restaurant in the evening and the food was tasty and good quality, not michelin star but then i wasn't expecting that anyway. Overall a great place to stay and we would definately return.

  • Liked — the room
  • Disliked — loved it all
  • Stayed October 2008, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Check in / front desk
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Kate G
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Newcastle Upon Tyne
Level Contributor
4 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 19 helpful votes
2 of 5 bubbles Reviewed October 19, 2008

Ate Sunday lunch with the family here. Stunning house and staff are terrific. However the food was mediocre to say the least. Starter of pan fried goats cheese on basil leaves with vine ripened tomato was a slab of warm cheese on a few cheap salad leaves with 4 tiny bits of cheap chopped tomato. No bread basket offered even though every guest had bread plate with knife! Got the distinct impression they had run out!
Main course of slow baked belly pork was awful. Basically a slab of coiled up fat which was undercooked! Accompanied by some unimaginative boiled vegetables. Not what we expected at all!
Puddings were better but the whole experience was extremely disappointing.

  • Stayed October 2008, traveled with family
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Check in / front desk
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank K.RO-7
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Travelers are raving about these Durham hotels

co fred
Level Contributor
11 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
2 of 5 bubbles Reviewed October 16, 2008

Hotel is pleasant enough and has calm atmosphere depite some very dodgy clashing green decor. We booked a week in advance for dinner bed & breakfast and told them both over phone and by email that I have Coeliac so can't eat gluten (in wheat). No problem they reasurred us.

At dinner when I asked which dishes on the menu were OK for me they said they didn't know as the chef who'd made them had gone off duty at lunchtime!! They obviously had ignored or forgotten the dietary problem completely. Even by 10am breakfast the next day they hadn't managed to find some gluten free bread which every supermarket sells. After all, vegetarians wouldn't expect to have to bring their own vegetables!

It's an expensive place; they are trying to be up-market and sophistiacated, but they can't quite carry it off - certainly not in the restaurant.

Won't be going back I'm afraid, despite one of the most comfortable beds I've slept in!

  • Liked — bed
  • Disliked — food
  • Stayed August 2008, traveled as a couple
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Check in / front desk
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 1 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank fredfredy
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Manchester
1 review
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed October 12, 2008

We wanted a small and intimate wedding reception in elegant surroundings and that is exactly what we got at Grafton House. Our wedding and reception in Durham on 2nd of August 2008 was a wonderful, stress free, experience. The service we received from Mary Parker and her staff at Grafton House was first class. We did all our preparations by phone and e-mail and they were very patient in answering all our questions.

We were able to choose a personal menu for a reception lunch from their extensive and varied list of options. The food was fresh, delectable and wonderfully presented. The wedding fruit cake they provided was scrumptious. The service was courteous and the staff thoughtful. Thanks to Grafton House we, and our friends and family, thoroughly enjoyed our day.

We spent a comfortable night in one of their luxurious rooms and had a lovely breakfast before our departure the next day. Overall, it was a great experience.

  • Liked — Luxurious comfortable surroundings. Great service
  • Disliked — There was a little bit of dust in the corners and closet.
  • Stayed August 2008, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Check in / front desk
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
Thank jam0ne
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
durham
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed July 21, 2008

The plan was to go to this little boutique hotel, have a nice meal and then go for a night out in Durham City Centre and bed down for the night in nice surroundings.....that all changed the minute we entered our suite.
From the outside Grafton is a clean and unassuming terraced building with quaint topairy trees and shiny door furniture...the minute you enter the big front door you know you are somewhere magical. Michael Buble played softly in the background and a warm sense of feeling fills you like you've just come home. We were booked in to stay at the Castle Suite right at the top of the hotel. After a slow meander up the winding staircase admiring the fabulous black and white photographs, we put the key in the door and opened up to the most spectacular view I have ever seen. The whole of the bay window was filled with the most breathtakingly beautiful scene...the bottom of the window looked out onto a sea of fluttering tree tops and the top half of the window was filled with the amazing vista of Durham Cathedral..... now don't get me wrong.....i'm all about the love, life and labels of this world....i am practically keeping Vivienne Westwood going with my purchases.... but anyone who is not swept of their feet with the romance of such a spectacular vista.....is....well dead ! In the window was a small table and two squishy arm chairs complete with a cashmere throw, and there my husband and I sat marvelling at how serene it all was, so quiet yet awe inspiring at the same time. So what started as a quick drop the bags off and go back out... became a lets just chill and watch the world go by with a bottle of wine (or in my case...Evian) for 4 hours. We could have been anywhere in the world, yet we were only 10 miles from home....who knew. By 7 o'Clock it was time to make a move and go for our evening meal. We quickly showered (whilst watching Glastonbury...in the Shower which is the size of a new mini Cooper!!!!!) and went down for tea (dinner to you lot in the south) The dining room is small and only has about 10 tables (think ten tables in your living room...after all in it's former incarnation, this hotel was a residential property) But that doesn't make it any less grand. The menu is small, but fabulous, even with limited choices it was still hard to decide (and it's no good looking at everyone elses plates because that just makes you want it all !) The hotel don't turn the tables, which I personally love because i ofeten want to sit around and enjoy the company after a meal not jump back onto the conveyor belt and be wisked out. The food was delicious and the portion sizes excellent for the very reasonable prices. I would highly recommend booking for lunch or dinner even if you don't want to stay overnight. After dinner we made the slow crawl back up the stairs readmiring the photographs on our way back to the room. In our bathroom was a fabulous infinity bath...now if you've never tried one of these(or seen one of these)... again book the Castle Suite just to experience the bath (which is well big enough for two !!!!!) So candles on (provided by the hotel) Bath filled and gently cascading over the sides...check......chromo lighting on (in the bath)....check......champagne-like effervescent bubbles that caress your skin quietly oozing from the jets...check....Glastonbury on the TV (in the bathroom )......check.....If carlsberg made heaven this would be it ! All squeaky clean and relaxed and back to those squishy arm chairs to watch the day turn to night. The bed was fabulously soft and cocoon like...and off to sleep we went.
Breakfast was a fabulous selection of continental pastries, muffins, cereals and more fresh strawberries than you could shake a tennis racquet at , followed by a hearty Full English Breakfast minus the grease.....perfection. I was so sad to leave but came away so rejuvenated that I could well have just spent two weeks at Sandals St Lucia... but in reality I had been away from home for one night. Weeks later I am still feeling the effects of my 'ephipany' such is the magic of this little jem ! Words can never fully explain how amazing this place can make you feel. I have booked to go back again in October and again in December...just to marvel at the ever changing view (and to share a bath with my gorgeous husband). Book now people...you won't regret it...see you there ! xxx

  • Liked — The decor and view from the room
  • Disliked — nothing
  • Stayed June 2008, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Check in / front desk
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
8 Thank princessamandapinky
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed April 7, 2008

We had a room at the back of the hotel, overlooking the bins. This would have been okay, given that we were not paying their top rate, but the room was absolutely tiny, with a bathroom so small they had nowhere to hang towels, and one had to sit sidewyas on the loo! The beds were comfortable, with good toiletries also. Breakfast the next day was an extra £20 for 2, and was slow to arrive, average in execution. Staff friendly, but poor restaurant service.

Stayed April 2008
Helpful?
Thank CaitlinB
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Grafton House Hotel

Property: Grafton House Hotel
Address: 40 South Street, Durham DH1 4QP, England
Location: United Kingdom > England > County Durham > Durham
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Room Service Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #16 of 19 Hotels in Durham
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Number of rooms: 10
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Formerly a private residence, on possibly the best street in Durham City, Grafton House has been created with love, care and meticulous attention to detail. Not only is the interior stunning, but it is situated in a conservation area and enjoys breathtaking views of Durham Castle and Cathedral. ... more   less 
Also Known As:
Grafton Hotel Durham

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