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“Served a purpose”

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Sovereign Hill Hotel
Ranked #17 of 33 Hotels in Ballarat
Reviewed October 6, 2013

Stayed in Bunk room. Only plus was the convenience to Sovereign Hill and price. Otherwise:
- was not notified of shared kitchen closing down since I booked which posed a challenge when providing dinner and breakfast for 6 children. Staff would not assist with easing this inconvenience by offering use of plates, cuttlery, or anything from restaurant kitchen.
- no access to boiling water. Couldn't even make a cup of coffee.
- bathrooms were grimy. Wouldn't let my children shower there.
- "bedding supplied" actually meant sheets (half of which were used), pillows (with snot on one pillow case), and one blanket each. Thank you to the lady at reception who answered my pleas for more blankets. We did however have clean towels and soap provided.

Room Tip: If you book here, I suggest getting an exact explanation of what is included in your room so that yo...
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  • Stayed: October 2013, traveled with family
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1  Thank LittleBrother2013
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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216 - 222 of 346 reviews

Reviewed October 4, 2013

We were a group of 8 in the bunk house. The facilities did not match the advertising. Dirty bedding, filthy shared bathroom and showers, due the disgusting grime and grit. No hot water for beverages or microwave facilities to help cater for our families. Even the children said their recent school camps were cleaner than this venue.

Stayed: October 2013, traveled with friends
1  Thank Heidi_J_12_12
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed October 2, 2013

The Comfort Inn Sovereign Hill is very conveniently located for a visit to the Sovereign Hill attraction and Gold Museum. You can actually leave your car at the hotel and walk through to Sovereign Hill. The hotel itself is clean and comfortable. Breakfast was good, though as it was school holidays and the hotel full, we had to wait a while for them to refill the buffet!
I would certainly recommend a stay here- especially if you are attending Blood on the Southern Cross show.

  • Stayed: September 2013, traveled with family
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Thank heavenlyguide
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
sovereignhill, Manager at Sovereign Hill Hotel, responded to this reviewResponded October 6, 2013

Thank you for your feedback - we were pleased to read that you enjoyed your stay.
Our new breakfast room at the hotel offering our guests a full breakfast experience in delightful surroundings only opened at the commencement of the school holidays. As with any new venture there are initial teething problems which may have been exacerbated by the high number of guests over this period. We apologize if the service was a little slower than expected.

Kind regards

Neil Robbins
Manager

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Reviewed October 1, 2013

Location is excellent for those wanting the Sovereign Hill experience but that's where it ends. Room was less than basic, despite paying for a better room which we didn't get. Room was cluttered, unclean, noisy to the extreme, poor service and not even basics in the room as advertised (no hair dryer), TV was so small it wasn't worth having (advertised flat screens). I've stayed in caravan parks with better amenities. Very very poor overall and very disappointing that management took attitudes of "bad luck, nothing we can do about it".

  • Stayed: October 2013
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Thank Croweje
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
sovereignhill, Manager at Sovereign Hill Hotel, responded to this reviewResponded October 6, 2013

Thank you for providing detailed feedback regarding your recent stay. We greatly regret that the accommodation did not meet your expectations. We have just completed stage 1 of a major refurbishment and as a result we are now offering two levels of family accommodation - the premium Colonial Rooms and the budget priced Settlers Rooms.
When you made your booking it is evident that you were anticipating a Colonial Family Room as they were the only family rooms available up until 2 weeks ago when we introduced the alternative family accommodation. Under the circumstances normally we would have upgraded you to the Colonial Family Room however regrettably none were available.
Stage 2 of our refurbishment will involve further upgrades to our family accommodation rooms including the Settlers accommodation.

Please accept our apologies for the mix-up with the room assignments.

Kind regards

Neil Robbins
Manager

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Reviewed September 12, 2013

I joined my wife's work group for a night at the Comfort Inn at Sovereign Hill, Ballarat. The rate was more expensive than any advertised on the site, even without paying for entrance to Sovereign Hill or the Blood on the Southern Cross. I was told when I rang that there was only one room left at the price of $250 and I was 'lucky' as it had a large spa bath. Wanting to meet up with the group, I accepted the rate and booked.
I arrived at reception which is currently undergoing major renovations. I was met with, "I don't have a booking for you!" Luckily I had written down my booking number in my phone and was able to give that to the receptionist. She then made it clear that she was unhappy with the "front office" for not passing on that they had taken a booking and not passed it on. I felt a little uncomfortable - you know when you feel like you've done something wrong, even though you haven't? She told me that milk would be brought to my room so I could make tea/coffee.So, got my room key and went to my room. I had driven an hour and half to get there and went to the bathroom. Whilst there I heard persistent knocking on my door. After the second round of knocks, I called out that I was in the bathroom, finished up quicker than I would have and went to the door. The receptionist who'd just checked me in was there. She was insisting that a group of papers that she was holding in her hand was my itinerary that I had left at reception - despite a number of my assurances that it was not.
My wife and her group arrived and it ended up that they had an extra ticket to the Blood on the Southern Cross show that night. I had actually been waiting 20-25 years to get the opportunity to go to that particular show and had heard 'rave' reviews about it.
I desperately tried to like the show. However, disappointment doesn't even begin to cover it. Some might enjoy it. For me, though, it was a long hour and a half, mostly in quite cold weather watching random lights turn on and off whilst a recorded soundtrack played. I kept waiting for live actors to appear. It never happened. (With the exception of a sole man right at the end location).Yes, the sets and lighting are well done and convincing for the period. Essentially though, it's an hour and half of a narrated story, in three locations with lights and a few pyrotechnics going off over the set.
The Room - if I had the 'best room in the house' that was described to me on the phone, certainly for the "best" price, well..... My view was of the 'Court House' (reception, under construction, with associated noise). I'm not complaining about the noise, it's a necessary accompaniment to updates/extensions. However, the pubic and head hairs on the bathroom floor, the need to clean the bath before I used it and the fact that I wish there were cleaning products for me to clean the toilet, really can't be excused. The bed was very good.
Breakfast - wow! Sorry, I'll try not to try too much, but it needs to be said. Having read previous reviews, I was prepared for a very basic breakfast in my room. I was heartened to find a breakfast menu in my room where you could order a cooked breakfast for additional cost. I filled in the order and walked to reception to hand it in. I handed it to the receptionist who had booked me in. I advised her that I'd patiently waited three hours for the milk she said would be delivered, so that I could make my coffee. She asked if anyone had requested some, like we'd never had a previous conversation about it! The milk was no big deal, her attitude, however, was becoming more so. I said, "No, you said milk and breakfast would be delivered to my room." I handed her my breakfast menu. (Remember that I said that reception were operating out of major renovations occurring around them....). The receptionist went and got me some milk and I left, to go and make coffee. Next thing, someone was again knocking at my door. It was another staff member advising me that there were no cooked breakfasts being done because of the renovations taking place. Fair enough. However, as I handed over my breakfast order in the middle of the renovations (I didn't know where breakfast was cooked) don't you think the receptionist might have thought THEN was a good time to tell me, not leave it to the next staff member.
The bed was great to sleep in. Like others have commented re the tv, I too found that the digital picture kept breaking down, to the extend where there was no signals. It didn't seem to happen on the common Melbourne channels.
I am aware that I am not writing a review on a 5 star hotel. However, the vast majority of the problems I encountered have nothing to do with their rating. It has to do with deciding that you wish to work in the hospitality industry and then actually DOING the job, with the right attitude. All of these things I mention (apart from no room view for their 'super' suite), can be easily fixed.
Would I return? Absolutely not.

  • Stayed: September 2013, traveled solo
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1  Thank HaleyMelbourne
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
sovereignhill, Manager at Sovereign Hill Hotel, responded to this reviewResponded September 15, 2013

Thank you for the very detailed review from your recent stay at our property. Even though your review was scathing it is only with such feedback that we can hope to make improvements to our service levels. I only wish I would have had the opportunity to meet with you during your stay as I am sure we could have addressed most of your concerns at the time and ensured you a more pleasant stay.
It is true the last room we had available that evening was one of our spa suites priced at $250. We in fact did have a booking for you, the receptionist however was unable to locate the paperwork at the time of check-in. As you were aware we are currently undergoing a major refurbishment which consists of an upgrade to our reception desk, breakfast room and the provision of a new conference room. As a result we have had to temporarily relocate our reception desk and the accompanying construction noise and disruption to our normal service regrettably may have contributed to your experiences.
There was clearly a misunderstanding on our behalf regarding the breakfast and we apology that you were inconvenienced. The receptionist mistaking took your breakfast order when we clearly were unable to offer this service at this time. Again I can only assume it was a result of the works in progress.
It was unfortunate that you did not enjoy the sound & light show however the “rave reviews” you have heard confirms that the show is generally very highly regarded both for its entertainment value as well as a being highly informative re-enactment of a most important part of Australia’s history.
Within the next week our refurbishment will be completed our stunningly new breakfast room will be open for business and order shall be restored to our reception area.

Neil Robbins
Manager
Comfort Inn Sovereign Hill

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Reviewed July 19, 2013

You can't beat the location for this hotel if you're planning on visiting Sovereign Hill. The staff were really helpful when I arrived, sorting out the tickets for Sovereign Hill itself and Blood on the Southern Cross. You even get a 'secret' entrance to the open-air museum itself which is very cool! The room was nicely furnished, great bathroom and having breakfast provided (very simple - cereal and toast) was really helpful. I stayed there in winter so it was a bit chilly in the room as my particular room had a lovely lawn in front of it (complete with flagpole) and therefore no buildings between my room and the elements! My one quibble was on returning to my room at 4pm after a day out and finding that housekeeping (who were very nice by the way!) were only just cleaning my room. I had assumed it would have been done by then. But that's my only criticism. Other than that, I wouldn't hesitate to recommend this hotel to anyone visiting Ballarat and especially Sovereign Hill.

Room Tip: Rooms overlooking the green will be fabulous in the summer - just a bit chilly in the winter.
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  • Stayed: July 2013, traveled solo
    • Value
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Thank dvstracey
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
sovereignhill, Manager at Sovereign Hill Hotel, responded to this reviewResponded July 21, 2013

Thank you for providing a review on TripAdvisor on your recent stay at the Comfort Inn Sovereign Hill - we always greatly appreciate the feedback.

It was encouraging to read that your had a number of positive experiences during your stay and that you found the accommodation more than satisfactory. With regards to the breakfast we are about to commence refurbishment of our dining room adjacent to reception and will be providing a full buffet breakfast experience for our guests commencing late September.

We apologize for the late servicing of your room when you returned in the afternoon - our very busy holiday period placed extra demands on the service staff to complete their duties on time.

Kind regards

Neil Robbins
Manager

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 13, 2013

Great location, great, fresh room, fantastic convenience for accessing Sovereign Hill. Only issue was that checking in at 10:30am, our room was not available until 5pm. We assumed availability from 2pm. The room was warm, clean and everything we needed for breakfast was provided. They also arranged all our tickets for access to Sovereign Hill, Blood on the Southern Cross and the Gold Museum - made the stay all that much easier.

Room Tip: Check that your room is available before assuming it is!
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  • Stayed: July 2013, traveled with family
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Thank cangurotto
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
sovereignhill, Manager at Sovereign Hill Hotel, responded to this reviewResponded July 15, 2013

Thank you for your feedback. Irrespective of the fact that you found our refurbished rooms totally to your liking, that the location with respect to Sovereign Hill access is unbeatable and the ease of booking show and entry tickets makes for a seamless Sovereign Hill experience, there is no excuse for your room availability being held back so late in the day. With such a busy and successful holiday period we should have ensured we were adequately staffed on the day and as a consequence you were inconvenienced. Please accept our apologies.

Kind regards

Neil Robbins
Manager
Comfort Inn Sovereign Hill

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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 Sovereign Hill Hotel

Address: Magpie St, Ballarat, Victoria 3350, Australia (Formerly Sovereign Hill Lodge)
Location: Australia > Victoria > Ballarat
Amenities:
Free Breakfast Free Parking Kitchenette Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#11 Romantic Hotel in Ballarat
Price Range: $81 - $126 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:3.5 star — Sovereign Hill Hotel 3.5*
Number of rooms: 16
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The Sovereign Hill Hotel offers modern, family-friendly, hotel accommodation right in the heart of Sovereign Hill. The hotel offers comfort and convenience with all the action of Main Street and our evening sound-and-light show, right on your doorstep. Choose from a variety of accommodation,ranging from luxurious Governors Rooms to spacious and comfortable family rooms. The hotel offers a range of cost effective packages to fully engage you in the Sovereign Hill experience. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Sovereign Hill Motel
Sovereign Hill Hotel Ballarat, Victoria

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