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Reviewed December 18, 2008

We stayed at Abercelyn Country House for 2 nights while we had a training course. The location is beautifully quaint, metres from the lake front. It is all spotlessly clean and rooms have everything you could need. Lindsay and Ray were extremely hospitable from start to end. We were treated with Lindsay's fresh homemade cooking from breakfast, through to lovely baking treats during tea and coffee breaks, and lunch. The whole stay was perfect. It was all faultless. Will definitely return sometime in 2009 with my partner to enjoy more of the area.

  • Stayed: November 2008, traveled on business
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Thank TLinacre
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed December 13, 2008

Travelling on the main highway through Bala it is too easy to miss this property. There is a very, very small sign to advertise that it is a guest house.

Once you have travelled back and forth 3 or 4 times up and down the road, you eventually will find it (Literally across the road - behind the hedge)!

Ok so arriving at Abercelyn we first of all noticed its pretty charm. The house was a former rectory. Being presented with knowledge makes the prettyness and quirkyness stand out even more. The front gardens are beautiful and although maintained they do have a cottage feel to them. Along side the beautiul front garden runs an outstanding piece of nature in the form a small river with a small little water fall at the top end of the garden. It once again adds great charm to this building. To us it was certainly an impressive start to our trip, particularly as we are keen amateur photographers.

When you arrive at the front porch you have to press a bell to raise the owners attention. At first this seems a little daunting as you almost feel as though your imposing upon somebody. I'm not sure how that feeling can be removed however.

Regardless, we were greated by one of the owners who greeted us fairly plainly. However once in we were given a tour of the property and to our room. The guest sitting room is decorated as dainty as the house and has an extensive bookcase of maps and walks to complete around Bala lake and Snowdonia. Whilst in the siting room unwiding after our journey we were quickly and curteously presented with a pot of tea and cakes, which was an absaloute delight. A great start of things to come.

After the great afternoon tea we retired to our room to unpack. The rooms DO NOT disappoint. For the price you would expect something good, however I can honestly say I have NEVER slept in a more comfortable bed. For a couple of outdoor/active people we became very lazy haha.

The rooms are large and spacious with a solid wooden wardrobe and writing desk. To accompany the room you are given fair trade tea, coffee and cookies with fresh milk in a flask every night, a very nice touch.

The bathrooms are also very spacious and decorated in keeping with the room and house as a whole. It was nice to see that the owners have provided guests with brand name shampoo/conditioner and shower gels and not cheap products.

Looking through the windows of both the bathroom and bedroom you have lovelly views of the garden. Regarding this house the owners are in a catch 22 position. At present the room we occupied does not offer lake views due to the heavey folage of the gardens, however remove this and you lose much of the charachter, not only that but you get the lake AND sadly the very busy road. At the moment the folage cuts out most of the traffic noise.

Breakfast time. The food here (breakfast only offered) is outstandingly good and you have a large selection of dishes to choose from ( a fresh menu is placed in your room each night). The owners even give you options of preffered cooking times. Each day I chose different dishes to taste the whole menu. One day i had porridge and traditional welsh breakfast and the next fresh fruit with bacon and eggs and so on.

My only niggle (and niggle it is) about breakfast lies on the owner (wife). If you are someone who likes to eat a lot in the morning and little through the day, well then you will not be on the owners Christmas card following your stay. The reason for this innocent yet bold statement is due to attitude. If you have ordered more than one dish for breakfast you are subtly made to feel guilty. 'Smart Alec' jokes' are made about being charged more, being greedy or how its lucky they don't offer dinner too. This sadly made the breakfast taste very bitter. Unfortunately it was not just ourselves which felt this way. A couple in the adjacent room also commented their previous morning was very similar. this is all very sad as the rooms, welcome and surroundings all make for a great stay, all resort to nothing with poor service. However it certainly was NOT neglectful service, catering to all our needs.

During our stay we wanted to try white water rafting at the local centre, however it is not always open due to safety restrictions. Each morning the owner (always wife) would call for us and let us know what the outcome was before we wasted our time. This service was really very much appreciated as we could plan other activities. On the last day however (check out day) we were able to attend the white water centre, but forgot to pack towels. We therefore commited the ultimate travel faux pas and used the towels from the room.

On returning we asked for 2 more towels as we wanted a quick shower before leaving. We had 30 minutes before check out. When i asked the owner for these towels. She looked at her watch and asked what was wrong with the towels in the room already (I had a sneaky suspicion she knew we had used them). I was then sharply asked how long we were going to be because the maid wanted to clean the room. (She told us earlier the room was free for another night should we need it). I felt in a situation that now they have had our business they wanted us out as quickly as possible even though we had been model guests.

I strongly believe that we were treated the way we were based on the fact we were both young. However should the owners need to know, my friend is a self made millionaire in the medical supplies sector and I myself am a paramedic and magistrate. So although you, both mature professionals.

Abercelyn is an exceptionally nice guest house with equally nice rooms. The food is wonderful and to be recommended to all. The location for me could not be any better and the owners in general were very nice and hospitable regardless of some unsavoury comments/humour?!

On packing up the car to leave we had a quick tour of the adjacent cottages which are let to guests. They were exceptional and an absaloute brilliant, spot on accomadation for a group of tourists. I would certainly return to this place to stay again to enjoy more of the same.

  • Stayed: June 2008, traveled with friends
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Thank danioko
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed October 25, 2008

We first stayed at this fabulous country house hotel in July 2005. We booked a 'package' deal where we stayed 3 nights (2 with dinner) plus 2 days guided walking with Ray. We loved it so much we returned a couple of weeks ago.

It's difficult to know where to start singing the praises of this place! Firstly, the location is brilliant - just outside Bala but still opposite the lake. The grounds and gardens are a feature - and the reason for one of their many awards - but the house itself is what I love. There are 3 rooms, each superbly decorated and furnished. You feel instantly 'at home' but also cosseted; for example, as well as all the usual amnities Lindsey thoughtfully provides a wine coaster, corkscrew and 2 wine glasses - being able to relax with a glass of wine after a long journey on a Friday night is my idea of heaven!

Although Lindsey no longer does evening meals (she's a superb cook) her breakfasts are up there with any I've had in various hotels of all grades! There is a huge choice and it is all freshly produced using local, organic produce (including eggs from their own hens!).

Ray is a knowledgeable and entertaining guide/host - on our first visit we went up Snowdon and experienced gale force winds, horizontal rain, zero visibility from the top etc but we felt safe - and also even enjoyed the experience (!) - solely thanks to Ray. On our recent visit we climbed Cader Idris - another great day but once again high winds/rain etc etc - the same comments re Ray applied again.

Nothing is too much trouble for them - for example, lap trays and plates etc were cheerfully provided when we decided that after our exertions we just wanted a night in with a takeaway! The place feels like a home from home - or like staying with old friends - and if this is what you like then you'll love Abercelyn.

  • Stayed: October 2008, traveled with friends
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Thank Whiteleaf87
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
walker-paddler, Owner at Abercelyn Country House, responded to this reviewResponded May 27, 2009

We now have Wireless Internet available for guests to use

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Reviewed June 6, 2017
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  • Stayed: June 2017, traveled as a couple
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed May 1, 2013
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  • Stayed: April 2013, traveled as a couple
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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