I stayed here with my Dad for five nights and we chose this hotel because he had stayed here with my grandmother when he was a little boy, and was returning on a pilgrimage 62 years later. We paid AU$278 a night (supposedly a special rate) for a heritage view twin room and the view was the best thing about it, really very beautiful and unrestricted views over the mountains and the Jamieson Valley.
I can also compliment the restaurant, which was excellent. It was expensive but good value and the chef very talented. Breakfasts were good. Service, from a very young staff in reception, the bar and the restaurant was friendly and enthusiastic.
Unfortunately that's where the compliments end. I am astounded that a 4 and a half star hotel offers neither a lift nor any assistance with bags. The staircase is tall, steep and curved - frankly quite dangerous for anyone with a large bag and the more so for someone in their 70s. No help at all was offered by the staff and I ended up helping several people I saw struggling as we had.
Our room was small and very tatty. The furniture had never been good, but is now on its last legs. The soft furnishings were ghastly velour. The bathroom was incredibly small, the towels tiny, the lighting greyish and the bath surface badly damaged. The TV had no news channel and the 'mini bar' contained one can of Pepsi and one of lemonade. We had to laugh at that one, presumably at least half a star is riding on the provision of 'mini bars'.
Our room being far too small to spend time in, we spent evenings in the lounge on its unattractive sofas. It was impossible to think about dinner and then walk into the restaurant - a table had to be booked during the day with reception - so I imagine the excellent chef ended up kicking his heels quite often. We ended up eating bar meals most of the time, which were fine, but why they couldn't have made more use of the excellent restaurant facility is beyond me. The piped music was far too loud and rather tacky. Mercifully the pianist, whose repertoire was similar to the piped tunes, only made one appearance in our five nights.
I hate to moan in these reviews, but this hotel is really worth giving a miss. It has pretensions based on its heritage but doesn't follow through. If Dad hadn't stayed there all those years ago, we'd have checked out early and looked for something else. This hotel has potential but it's clear it is run for the convenience of its management, not the benefit of its paying clientele, as no thought has been given to what might make anyone want to come back a second time. The restaurant is worth making a detour for, but stay elsewhere in the town.
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- Also Known As:
- Mountain Heritage Katoomba, Blue Mountains
- Mountain Heritage Hotel Katoomba