We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.
We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.
The latest reviews. The lowest prices. The perfect place to shop for hotels.

“A big let down”
3 of 5 bubbles Review of The Ivanhoe House

Best prices for -
Check In mm/dd/yyyy Check Out mm/dd/yyyy
Prices are for 1 room, 2 adults
Show Prices
Compare best prices from top travel sites
and 1 more site!
The Ivanhoe House
Ranked #42 of 95 Hotels in Darjeeling
Level Contributor
15 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 13 helpful votes
“A big let down”
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed October 10, 2013

22 of us as part of a school tour stayed at this property from 1st to 4th October, 2013. We had occupied 7 rooms in their main block as well as their annexe. But we were very disappointed with the hotel.

1. Running water in the bathrooms in the annexe was feeble at best. When we brought it to the attention of the manager he sought to check the problem and concluded there was an air block and assured us the problem had been rectified. Yet, the problem persisted. We had to let the water running, fills buckets and then bathe. As we had to leave by 3.30 am to Tiger Hills, one bucket of hot water was provided for each room (3 adults sharing a room) by 2 am. This was still a big inconvenience for both the hotel staff and us. And considering we had booked the rooms a month and a half in advance, shouldn't these have been checked BEFORE guests arrive and not after?

2. Despite the fact that the tourist season in Darjeeling had taken a big hit due to the curfews and bandh, we were still charged Rs.1,30,000 for 7 rooms for 3 nights. We were told that several hotels had even hashed their room tariff by 50%. We were ok with the price Ivanhoe charged us, unfortunately the services were not at par with it.

3. Choice of food was very limited. For example, all we had for breakfast was stuffed paratha one day and poori and sabzi another. After we insisted they included corn flakes and omelets from the second day. We had also asked them to arrange dinner but the spread wasn't great. The first night they served us old rasagullas as dessert. We asked them to include fruits, so the next night they omitted dessert! Even the fruit, was a single sliced papaya for 22 of us! It seemed as though the hotel was paying through their nose to provided a meal instead of us already having paid them so much!

4. The rooms did not even have a kettle with tea/coffee sachets. Everything needed to be ordered through room service. They provided packaged drinking water only on the first day too. Of course, no welcome

5. When we brought all this to the attention of the manager, and asked for a discount as their services were below satisfactory, he simply told us that A) nowhere in any hill station will you find running water at nominal speed, B) he had asked us for a food menu but we were vague about it (agreed we were vague by telling him to prepare 'local cuisine' but should the guests spell out everything and perhaps even make him a list?? All hotels offer a good spread without guests insisting, don't they?) C) He told us he could discount Rs. 2,400 for the snacks we had ordered the evening we checked in and that was all. It didn't sound too generous when we learnt that he he had charged Rs.40 for a slice of bread (filled with a slice of tomato and capsicum and called sandwich) and Rs.45 for tea! In addition he said he had also discounted a meal (of Rs.500) that was ordered separately by one of our friends. This friend later told us that he had in fact settled the bill already!!!

6. And be warned, they have no sitting area outside, except for one table, so if you are traveling as a group, you may find this an inconvenience.

I am sorry to say that our stay in Darjeeling was unpleasant because of Ivanhoe House. It's only pluses are its proximity tho the shopping area, helpful support staff and a colonial house that has been well preserved. But as a hotel, it lacks basic facilities and an understanding of guests' basic requirements.

Room Tip: Some parts of the rooms in the main house are dingy, but the rooms in the newer annexe are ok except...
See more room tips
  • Stayed October 2013, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
4 Thank rasindhiya
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
IvanhoeColonial, Manager at The Ivanhoe House, responded to this review, October 17, 2013
1. Re the water issue in the Annexe Wing of The Ivanhoe House, found by the guests in the early morning. The teachers and students were going to the sunrise event at Tiger Hill, so the teachers had asked just for one bucket of hot water for each room at this time. Later on that day, after dinner, they tried to shower and found that there was no hot water. We were not aware of this problem prior to the complaint and realised that there was an airlock, which was subsequently fixed the next day, both by our Property Manager and his staff (before breakfast). For this we are very sorry for the obvious inconvenience. From this point, the matter was resolved, so we cannot accept the comment that it continued to be faulty. Also, the writer did not complain about this trouble after the first episode. We need to say that although we understand the situation here, the rooms were thoroughly checked (as always) before the guests’ arrival.
2. All businesses in Darjeeling had been seriously impacted by the continuous strike. However, we offered a very special discounted rate for the whole party – we did this because of the strike situation and also the teachers in charge insisted that they would place 3 to 4 children to one room. This was their choice. We did offer extra beds for the rooms (and these would be chargeable, as per the standard practice in the hotel industry) but they did not want this. The understanding within the hotel industry, also, is that the guest pays for the room, either single or double. Therefore, we had to accept that one to two children were staying free of charge in the room and also for two meals per day.
3. Upon previous negotiation of the booking, it was clearly mentioned in the paperwork that breakfast would be either Continental or Indian and Dinner would be a fixed 3-course meal. In spite of the latter, both Continental and Indian were both served for the same price. So, we are rather confused by this comment. At every meal, the Asst. Manager checked with every individual (adults and children) as to their liking of the meal offering. The Asst. Mgr. was very mindful of the feedback from the children – the latter advised that they were satisfied. This was reported back to the teachers. Also, the female teachers complimented us on the dessert on the first day, as being a famous Bengali oudding (it should be noted that our guests were from Southern India). They preferred to have fruits in the evening (which is different to our local area), but the papaya is traditionally served in slices, on a platter. This was the alternative to a sweet dish. We also offered curd along with the fruit. It should be noted that when the whole event was being negotiated, it had been accepted by the teachers that at dinnertime, they would accept a soup/ rice/ chapati/ 1 x non-veg/ 2 x veg + veg snacks and 1x dessert.
After writing the above, we have concluded that in trying to accommodate what we call “modified plan American Plan” for all meals, we really should have stayed with our ‘Bed & Breakfast’ arrangement and then asked the guests to pay for anything extra. We were trying to make it work for our guests, but we can see that it was too confusing for a large group. We do not have a public restaurant – ours is a house, with a fixed menu. The teachers were advised of this, but we were also at fault in trying to make it work in a different way.
4. We have to agree that the water kettle, tea and coffee sachets + sugar/milk had been removed, because the Asst. Mgr. thought that the boiling kettle would be a health hazard for small children. However, we advised that Morning Tea/Coffee would be served (and it was) and could offered throughout the day. Packaged water was provided on the first day and from then, filtered water jugs were always present (as we know, ultra violet water filtration is 99 ½ % proof, and, in some cases, reported to be better drinking water than packaged bottles).
5. All three days went very smoothly, up to the final check-out, after the late dinner. The bill was presented, as per the agreed charges (made in August of 2013). From this point, the teachers started to argue about the “agreed upon” discount and wanted us to further discount the final amount. As is an accepted audit principle, once the price of any booking is accepted by the guest, then this is the amount to be made + any extras. The Asst. Mgr. of his own volition, offered the extras as complimentary (Rs.2400/-). Also, all sandwiches requested by the guests were listed on our menu, so we are curious about the comment made here re prices. These sandwiches were requested as “extra” in addition to any other set meals. The children were hungry on the first day, so we made our offering as fast as possible. The sandwich fillings comprised of: tomato/ cucumber/ cheese – we are puzzled by the comment of “capsicum”, as this is never added. One of the adults had ordered snacks and a lunch meal, while the rest of the group was sightseeing + tea/coffee. All of this amounted to Rs. 820/- (as per the menu), but we discounted the latter amount to Rs. 500/-. This amount had been previously paid by the teacher, so was not on the final bill. We do not understand this complaint.

6. The Ivanhoe House is a small Colonial house (comprising of 10 rooms). When they booked in August, the photographs were sent out to them. It clearly showed a small seating area outside, of 2 x tables and chairs. We do agree that the Annexe side of Ivanhoe needs more seating. We accept this comment and offer our apologies.

Finally, although we have tried to answer all of their complaints, we feel very sorry that the teachers chose to write on Trip Advisor. No matter who is right or wrong, we just want our guests to have a good time with us. This has upset all of our staff and obviously the guests as well.

We have gone into this situation thoroughly and also searched our own hearts to see what we have done wrong here. We hope that our answers are acceptable, as they are the truth as we see it. Thank you to TA for having such a forum.
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Write a Review

31 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
    16
    6
    5
    1
    3
See reviews for
9
9
2
Business
0
Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (8)
Date | Rating
  • Chinese (Traditional) first
  • English first
  • Japanese first
  • Any
English first
Kolkata
Level Contributor
37 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 28 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed September 22, 2013

I really enjoy to stay in IVANHOE HOUSE. It's Charles Dickens beloved's summer stay at Darjeeling.
Ivan & Dickens memories are all over the house. Their weapons are stored in Dinning space. It's amazing.
Fireplace and hospitality no one can imagine. Actually people over there are very hardy, fashionable and always with smiling face. Manager and staff are so cordial that i must appreciate. I never seen Shrubbery Nigh tangle Park before. I have visited thrice before. So my husband dare to leave me alone with my son . I like the journey to Tiger Hill. We really enjoy sunrise with beautiful snaps. Zoo and Mountaineering Institute attracts my son a lot. Solar power at zoo beside Tiger cage is interesting.
Rope way was closed. North point school is like a white palace to stay for BOY"S ( I.C.S.E & I.S.C).Tea gardens , Monastry , Darjeeling Toy Train station and Mirik is attractive.
Horse ride is interesting in Hill.

  • Stayed February 2013, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
5 Thank KolkataManju
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Perth, Australia
Level Contributor
50 reviews
40 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 41 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed April 5, 2013

Our one night stay at Ivanhoe was very convenient. Walking distance to Chowrasta Square and the main pedestrian malls of Darjeeling, as well as Observatory Hill for a nice view of the mountains.

Staff were very pleasant and helpful throughout and our room was very large, with the lovely character of the old building still maintained.

  • Stayed March 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
6 Thank lunabetty
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Bangkok, Thailand
Level Contributor
54 reviews
11 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 25 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed January 16, 2013

This is an old mansion that has been converted to a hotel. It is owned by the same company as The Windamere so it has many of the same quality of food and service at a much lower price. The room we were in was large and attractively furnished with vintage/antique furniture. There was a working fireplace, and the staff came and built a fire with wood and charcoal every night. Ask for a heater if that is not enough - it can be very cold in Darjeeling!!!

I can't say enough nice things about the staff and the service. They really are wonderful! They helped arrange our tours and transportation. The location is perfect for walking around the town or taking a little longer walk to the Zoo and Himalayan Institute. All in all, Ivanhoe was a great value.

  • Stayed November 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
4 Thank Kaye H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Singapore, Singapore
Level Contributor
100 reviews
37 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 41 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed August 23, 2012

Staying at this hotel is like staying at an old colonial bungalow. Wooden flooring, carpeted interiors, and overall very charming interiors. The garden is a good place to enjoy a cup of hot tea on a cold morning. They have small, large and very large rooms but all of them are very comfortable. The living room and dining room make it feel like a home and the staff add to it.

It's a 5 min walk (or even less) from Chaurasta so very well located.

  • Stayed September 2011, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
3 Thank aharol
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Jaipur, India
Level Contributor
24 reviews
16 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 34 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed June 4, 2012

This is a small property (just 9 rooms) a short walking distance from Chaurasta where Vivian Leigh and George Mallory are supposed to have stayed. The rooms in the main wing are large and spacious. The bathroom fittings have been renovated. There are fireplaces in the rooms that actually work!! The staff is extremely courteous and helpful. One of my friends was down with a stomach bug and the manager, Amit took us to a very good doctor and was up with us until 1 am. The breakfast was generous and they gave us choices every day to pick from. We had dinner one evening and they made a delicious yellow dal and jira aloo just like we North Indians like at home. I have uploaded pictures at - https://plus.google.com/u/0/photos/109721446193887907300/albums/5750091501154726577

  • Stayed May 2012, traveled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
6 Thank npjai
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Hotels you might also like...
Travelers also viewed these Darjeeling hotels
0.1 mi away
Crescent Resort
Crescent Resort
#37 of 95 in Darjeeling
4.0 of 5 bubbles 14 reviews
0.1 mi away
Little Tibet Resort
Little Tibet Resort
#12 of 95 in Darjeeling
4.0 of 5 bubbles 207 reviews
1.2 mi away
Hotel Villa Everest
Hotel Villa Everest
#7 of 95 in Darjeeling
4.5 of 5 bubbles 185 reviews
Show Prices
Show Prices
Show Prices
0.3 mi away
The Elgin, Darjeeling
The Elgin, Darjeeling
#4 of 95 in Darjeeling
4.0 of 5 bubbles 527 reviews
0.2 mi away
Hotel Nirvana
Hotel Nirvana
#24 of 95 in Darjeeling
4.5 of 5 bubbles 69 reviews
0.4 mi away
Krishna Service Apartment
Krishna Service Apartment
#28 of 95 in Darjeeling
4.0 of 5 bubbles 68 reviews
Show Prices
Show Prices
Show Prices

Been to The Ivanhoe House? Share your experiences!

Write a Review Add Photos & Videos

Additional Information about The Ivanhoe House

Property: The Ivanhoe House
Address: Below NCC Office | 4, Franklyn Prestage Road, The Mall,, Darjeeling 734101, India (Formerly Ivanhoe Hotel)
Location: India > West Bengal > Darjeeling
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free Breakfast Restaurant Room Service Suites Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #42 of 95 Hotels in Darjeeling
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Number of rooms: 10
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
We are a 2-storey Heritage House of India – originally built in 1871 - as a “quietly comfortable and elegant” Boarding House for British Raj families”. Famous names like ‘Vivien Leigh’ (of ‘Gone with the Wind’) and ‘Julie Christie’ (of ‘Dr. Zhivago’) used to live here. Sir George Everest, the Survey General of India (who discovered Mt. Everest as the highest point on earth) was here, along with Col.Younghusband, who led the British Expeditionary force to Lhasa, Tibet (then a forbidden country to enter). The House was also occupied by the Vicereine of India, Lady Curzon (wife of the then Viceroy); Sir Charles Bell (Indian Civil Service – British Political Officer for Sikkim, Bhutan and Tibet); George Mallory and Andrew Irvine – British mountaineers who disappeared below the summit of Everest in 1924 and alas, never returned. ‘Ivanhoe’ was, of course, one of King Arthur's beloved knights of ‘The Knights of the Round Table’ fable (or was it true?!)Today, we are delighted to see a rising tide of discerning domestic guests, who relish a stay in “an old place from the Indian Colonial days”. We also host the stays of overseas guests (with, or without, family), who feel that an old Colonial home is just right for them! ... more   less 
Reservation Options:
TripAdvisor is proud to partner with Priceline, Booking.com and Agoda so you can book your The Ivanhoe House reservations with confidence. We help millions of travelers each month to find the perfect hotel for both vacation and business trips, always with the best discounts and special offers.

Is This Your TripAdvisor Listing?

Own or manage this property? Claim your listing for free to respond to reviews, update your profile and much more.

Claim Your Listing