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“Could be so much better.........”

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Doubletree by Hilton, Dunblane-Hydro
Ranked #1 of 3 Hotels in Dunblane
Reviewed April 22, 2013

My husband and I recently spent a highly anticipated weekend at Dunblane Hydro - a birthday treat for me! Unfortunately we were extremely disappointed with our experience.

On first sight the hotel is beautiful and the reception and public areas are very nice. We arrived at 3.30 pm but our room wasn't ready until after the advertised 4.00 pm check-in. I have never experienced such a late check in at any hotel anywhere in the world! However, because of the lateness you would expect everything to be spot-on. Not so! We were given a room in the Stirling Wing which is a pretty ugly addition to the original building. We didn't realise we wouldn't be in the main building but that was perhaps our fault for not realising there was this addition. After a hike through the main building to the pretty much deserted rear of the property we came to the stairs for the first floor where our room was. These stairs were filthy! The carpet looked not to have been vacuumed in weeks. When we reached the first floor with our cases we realised our room was at the end of the corridor. Well that was an experience - dodging the carts full of dirty laundry, the cleaning carts and room service items which had been left outside doors and not cleared away. Bear in mind this was now nearer 5.00 pm and rooms were still being turned! The room was fine - a bog standard Hilton double but was clean with a comfortable double bed, ample hanging space, an iron/ironing board, hairdryer and acceptable bathroom. There was an exorbitantly overpriced minibar which we avoided!

Our deal included dinner at Nick Nairn's Kailyard restaurant and we found the food there to be excellent. Portions weren't huge and you do pay extra for side dishes. If your booking is dinner bed and breakfast you are allowed £32.50 per person for dinner. We didn't meet anyone that weekend who stayed within this budget but that is up to the individual! Breakfast is also served in the restaurant and was excellent with plenty of choice including fruits, cereal, porridge and full cooked breakfast.

The cocktail bar was very nice with fabulous cocktails! Not cheap of course but the Lemon Bon Bon was worth it and the staff were really friendly and pleasant. The Stewart Lounge looked fine but had a really strange smell - dampness I think so we didn't spend any time in there. It wasn't cold that weekend but a fire in the impressive fireplaces would have been nice.

On our second day we used the facilities at the Leisure Club. It has a small pool, steam room and sauna and was adequate for our needs. The changing rooms could do with an overhaul though - it was hard to find a locker with a key in it for one thing. We returned to our room at 3.30 pm to find it had not been cleaned. A few minutes later the cleaner knocked on the door - we told him we would be out in 15 minutes as we were walking into the town. He said no - 10 minutes please! Well it is another new experience to be ordered out of your room by the cleaner! When we eventually came back the bed had been made but there was still an empty toilet roll on the floor of the bathroom and hadn't been replaced. However, more concerning was the fact that our door hadn't been closed properly! It was quite scary coming back and finding your door on the latch and wondering if there was anyone inside.

As well as our room being left open there were other security concerns. You can park at the rear of the hotel and come through the doors there, right next to the Stirling Wing. There is a large impressive hallway - which is quite far from the main public area and completely empty! People can walk into the hotel at any hour of the day or night and gain access to the Stirling Wing - or any other part of the hotel for that matter - without being challenged. There should be security at this door, particularly in the evening.

Check out is at 12 noon and when doing so I asked for a comments card. I was told they were in the room (they weren't). Reception didn't have any and handed me a compliment slip to note my comments! This wasn't nearly big enough so I had to use hotel notepaper instead. To date I have had no reply to my concerns.

To sum up the Hydro is a very nice hotel but in my opinion should be struggling to maintain their 4 star status with the present level of service. A nice restaurant, pleasant public areas and pretty views do not make up for the grubbiness and lack of security.

Oh and the stair carpet still hadn't been vacuumed when we left and looked even more disgusting!

Room Tip: Bear in mind the Stirling Wing is not in the main building!
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  • Stayed: April 2013, traveled as a couple
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2  Thank Rudy_37
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
WatchmanDunblane, General Manager at Doubletree by Hilton, Dunblane-Hydro, responded to this reviewResponded April 22, 2013

Dear Rudy_37

Firstly I am going to agree that we should have done so much better for your stay and that yes, we will do better. I can see with the detail you have provided in your feedback that you have thought long and hard about your stay and appreciate greatly the time you have taken to provide such a comprehensive review.

The international standard for our brand of hotel is a 4.00pm check-in and whilst that may not ideal, it generally fits in with the expectations of our guests. The points that you have made about the difficulty in getting to your bedroom have been noted and I will find an alternative solution to the practicalities of the varying Housekeeping department's carts. There is however no excuse for cleanliness issues and that will be my prime focus today to address. The issue that you have been kind enough to highlight further into your report to me about the room attendant being persistent about getting access to your room will also be discussed, as this was a very simple request from you which we should have observed diligently.

With regards to the allocation you received for dinner, this allocation is actually much higher than the industry standard, so I'm disappointed that you felt this way. Recently I have added an additional menu which diners who are on an inclusive rate, can dine easily within budget and still enjoy a wide variety of choices.

Security is of a paramount importance to us with the areas you have highlighted being covered by extensive CCTV and a regular walk of the areas specifically for fire and security call point checking. I understand your observations however and take them fully on board.

I'm sorry that you feel that your comments have been ignored, I am very particular about any guest feedback being responded to efficiently and so I will ensure that when guests leave comments, there will be no opportunity for them to not to reach me.

Once again I am sorry that your stay on this occasion was not to the standard we should have provided. Your detail has given me much to act on and I assure you that is what I will be doing. If I can be of any assistance in the future, please do contact me directly where I will be pleased to personally oversee your details for you.

Yours sincerely

Liam

Liam Spillane, General Manager

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3,299 - 3,305 of 4,159 reviews

Reviewed April 20, 2013

Hubby and I stayed here for his fortieth birthday recently.

We stayed in a Deluxe room in the main building overlooking the town. The room was huge and the en-suite had a huge spa bath with separate shower (rainfall shower head). The bathroom absolutely made the room. The shower was powerful and really hot and the bath was really great!

The bed was ok, not the best I've slept in but not the worst either. The only issue I had in the room was the carpet...it was pretty badly stained in several places. I didn't ask for another room though because the bathroom was just so nice!

To a one, every staff member we encountered during our two night stay was polite, helpful and efficient. We have no complaints whatsoever. In fact, we had a slight issue with the wifi and it was satisfactorily resolved by the concierge in seconds.

We didn't eat there for dinner so can't comment on that but the breakfast was nice. Self service for both hot and cold food. I didn't have the cooked breakfast but my husband did and loved it both mornings. We also has a sandwich and tea etc from the lounge and they were all lovely too.

Overall, I'd say its a good hotel with lovely staff and nice rooms... I think the deluxe rooms are a good deal better than the standard rooms though so well worth upgrading if you can.

We would be happy to stay here again. Might even bring the kids next time!

  • Stayed: April 2013
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Thank Sheryl_McQ
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
WatchmanDunblane, General Manager at Doubletree by Hilton, Dunblane-Hydro, responded to this reviewResponded April 22, 2013

Dear Sheryl_McQ

Whaooo, what a great review! Thank you so much.

There are many positives to take from your review which as I team we love to read about as it spurs us on to continuing to raise the bar even higher. The points that you constructively commented on will be addressed as soon as I can, I'm sorry that they came to your attention the first place.

Thanks again for your review, please do come back again and yes........bring the children too!

Yours sincerely

Liam

Liam Spillane, General Manager

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Reviewed April 17, 2013

Despite the many good reviews, this was my worst hotel experience for some time, starting with dinner. The restaurant is hyped up as something special but the meal was a great disappointment: poor quality control (e.g. soup too salty to drink), small portions, and high prices. The bedroom was hot and small. The bed was short and uncomfortable. Internet access was an extra £14.99 a night and so slow that it was unuseable (0.2 Mbps), though the reception staff agreed to delete this from the bill. Breakfast was an extra £20 (!) with nothing special to recommend it: the orange juice was warm and no pot was provided for tea. On checkout I found that two items from someone else's dinner had been added to my restaurant bill: poor quality control again. I was booked in for two nights but couldn't face another so checked out as soon as I could. Hilton management have some work to do here.

  • Stayed: April 2013, traveled on business
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3  Thank NKCole
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
WatchmanDunblane, General Manager at Doubletree by Hilton, Dunblane-Hydro, responded to this reviewResponded April 18, 2013

Dear NKCole

Although your review is not as I would have hoped for I accept that you have valid points to make and I appreciate the time you've taken to give me your opinion.

Rather than risking sounding defensive, I would like to firmly assure you that we do have some work to do based on your feedback. I can promise that the points you have made will be addressed. Please take this next comment in the polite manner I mean this but whilst your stay has not been good, I would ask both yourself and all reviewers of your post and my response to take a perspective from the overall great comments we do receive. Sometimes we get it wrong and I am sorry this was the case with you.

I hope that I have demonstrated to you that your comments have been taken seriously, please do contact me at the hotel in the future if I can help in any way should the situation arise.


Yours sincerely

Liam Spillane, General Manager

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Reviewed April 16, 2013

Firstly, I would like to comment on how beautiful this hotel and it’s surroundings are. It is truly a lovely place to stay with all the 5 star amenities available for you at your disposal. The decor is tasteful and the hotel as a whole is spotless. Upon arriving at the hotel the staff were great and went out of their way to help you with your every need. I particularly enjoyed the warm chocolate chip cookie we received when checking in! However, it didn't stop there... the food and service throughout our stay was excellent. Myself and my partner both had the steak for dinner, it was one of the nicest steaks I have ever had! The chef is very talented and we will definitely be visiting again even if it’s just for lunch! Whilst staying at the hotel I also decided to visit the spa, there are some slight refurbishments being carried out at the moment however, that does not interrupt the quality this hotel and spa has to offer and I still thoroughly enjoyed my time here. This will be the first of many trips to this beautiful hotel. We can’t wait to book again!

  • Stayed: April 2013, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank Amy C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
WatchmanDunblane, General Manager at Doubletree by Hilton, Dunblane-Hydro, responded to this reviewResponded April 17, 2013

Dear Amy C

What a fantastic review!

You have been kind enough to comment on many of the great facilities in the hotel but my favourite always has to be the great team of staff I have here at the hotel, they are really the best asset this beautiful hotel has.

Thanks for your review, it was a really insightful and informative piece of feedback for our TripAdvisor Community.

Yours sincerely

Liam Spillane, General Manager

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed April 14, 2013

On a busy Friday evening the staff were most efficient & charming as we checked in to this beautiful building. The room was Hilton at it's best, modern, clean & plush. Even though the hotel was busy with Burns Night reveller's we had a wonderful nights sleep. Then came the best breakfast spread you can get, full Scottish breakfast came with haggis, this must be tried. Some of the best hotel staff we have come across in a beautiful location.

  • Stayed: January 2013, traveled as a couple
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Thank MattandGail
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
WatchmanDunblane, General Manager at Doubletree by Hilton, Dunblane-Hydro, responded to this reviewResponded April 15, 2013

Dear MattandGail

Thanks for your fantastic review of our hotel after your stay with us.

It's great to read that even you stayed with us earlier in the year, the positive impressions we made has remained with you until now. Perhaps it's time to think about coming back to see us again as we'd love to see you return!!

Thank you again for your review.

Yours sincerely

Liam Spillane, General Manager

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Reviewed April 13, 2013

Had a very enjoyable stay, nice welcome, staff very helpful and cheery. Dinner and breakfast both served at the kailyard were lovely, high standard of taste and presentation. Drinks and in room movies were a it over priced along with bar food however expected fo high class hotel. A mistake was made on a sandwich order from the bar however was quickly resolved and was deducted from the bill. Would certinly stay again. Especially at the discounted price we recieved from 5pm.com!

  • Stayed: April 2013, traveled as a couple
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Thank 427DebbieM
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
WatchmanDunblane, General Manager at Doubletree by Hilton, Dunblane-Hydro, responded to this reviewResponded April 14, 2013

Dear 427DebbieM

Thank you for taking the time to review DoubleTree by Hilton Dunblane Hydro Hotel after your recent stay with us, I appreciate the the time you took out to place your opinions on TripAdvisor.

Obviously I'm delighted that you had a great time during your stay with us and in particular that the great team that we have working here really gave you a taste of their personality with their warmth and technical ability to give you a really positive impression of our hotel.

I hope that it won't be too long before we see you again, watch out for similar priced deals on our on website by booking direct!

Yours sincerely

Liam Spillane, General Manager

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Reviewed April 12, 2013

Hotel was a delight with great enthusiastic staff. Standard twin room was very pleasant with spotless ensuite and lovely complimentary Crabtree & Evelyn toiletries not forgetting the delicious warm cookie on arrival. Leisure facilities were great, my husband, myself and my son enjoyed the pool as we spent quite a lot of time there when you have kids - well that's our excuse. Evening dinner in The Killearn was again a pleasant experience - food delicious and great attentive staff. Menu had something to suit all tastes. Breakfast again was very enjoyable -will definitely be booking again and next time for longer. 5 out of 5 definitely Double Tree.

  • Stayed: April 2013, traveled with family
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Thank 436AnnaL436
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
WatchmanDunblane, General Manager at Doubletree by Hilton, Dunblane-Hydro, responded to this reviewResponded April 13, 2013

Dear 436AnnaL436

Thank for today's review on TripAdvisor and it was great to read that you had such a fantastic stay with us.

From food and service levels to our leisure facilities, we appear to have made a really great impression. Just to let you know as well, we are finalising the dates for a refresh of our health club that will give us a bright new feel to the already great facilities within the club.

Thanks again for the time you've taken to give the TripAdviser community your thoughts on your stay.

Yours sincerely

Liam Spillane, General Manager

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Doubletree by Hilton, Dunblane-Hydro

Address: Perth Road, Dunblane FK15 0HG, Scotland
Phone Number:
Location: United Kingdom > Scotland > Stirlingshire > Dunblane
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 3 Hotels in Dunblane
Price Range: $123 - $227 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4 star — Doubletree by Hilton, Dunblane-Hydro 4*
Number of rooms: 200
Reservation Options:
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Also Known As:
Doubletree By Hilton, Dunblane-Hydro Hotel Dunblane
Hilton International Dunblane
Dunblane Hydro
Hydro Dunblane
Dunblane Hilton International
Doubletree By Hilton, Dunblane-Hydro Scotland

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