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The Ickworth Hotel
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Reviews (771)
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All reviewsnational trustswimming poolafternoon teafamily hotelstately homehigh teagames roomsandwichesspa treatmentsfamilies with young childrenlovely poolchanging roomsthe main hotelbike ridegrand tourhalf termwalled garden
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626 - 631 of 771 reviews
Reviewed November 13, 2013

This was our first visit to the Ickworth and on the whole, we had a great time.

- The grounds were a real treat and having the bikes to use made them all the more accessible. The games room also proved a great hit and the swimming pool was always warm and there were plenty of floats/woggles so that our non-swimmer felt confident.

- The room we had in the Lodge was a great size with plenty of space although 1 bathroom between 6 of us meant queues in the morning, not a major problem though. The bed however was awful – my husband slept in one of the children’s beds as, even with a small child sharing with me, it felt like I was sleeping on a trampoline. The sofa & chair whilst fitting with the character of the room were not very comfortable to sit on for any length of time. The low ceiling height also meant the shower was of little use to adults, but I appreciate you can’t change the character of the building!

- For me, buffet breakfasts do not work – I like my food hot and having to use cold plates meant that it was lukewarm by the time I sat down. That said, the quality of the produce was excellent.

- My main gripe was in relation to dining. On our first day there we attempted to get a table in the Conservatory at just after 5.00pm but couldn’t – it was fully booked. There was no effort made to suggest an alternative – we could have a table much later (7.30 or 8pm) which was of no use with small children to feed. It was very much a case of, ‘the hotel is fully booked, the restaurant is fully booked, nothing we can do’. Eventually we were offered the library – perfect, no problem, but why wasn’t this offered immediately? We didn’t really care where we ate, just as long as we could feed the children! I appreciate that the hotel advises advance booking but I think on a first visit most people prefer to book when they get there and see what the alternatives are; I would also suggest that perhaps on check-in that new guests are advised that it really is essential that they book a table early. With this in mind, we then booked for Thursday and Friday. We went to Reception and I booked a table for Thursday for 3 children in the Conservatory and then a later booking for Fredericks for my husband, son and myself (pointing out my son as I booked it). Next night, the 3 of us went to the Drawing Room and had a drink – we were given 2 menus and then the waitress asked if our son was also dining, when we said he was, he was also given a menu. Half an hour later I think it was the dining manager who asked if we were ok, I replied, ‘yes, can we please order’; he replied ‘order?’; ‘yes’, I said, ‘food?’. ‘To eat where?’ he asked. ‘In the restaurant?’ ‘How old is your son?’ he asked. ‘14’. ‘I’m sorry, but it’s adults only’. At this point my husband made his displeasure known. Why was the booking taken, why was my son given a menu? Then we were told that it was ok, he could eat in the restaurant. By this time however the atmosphere had been spoiled especially as the chap then crashed and banged around us and was clearly not happy. It was all unnecessary. I appreciate people enjoy getting away from children – I do too! But, in the literature sent to us it refers to ‘adult only’ dining but does not mention that it applies to Fredericks. My son has impeccable table manners and thoroughly enjoyed his venison but the initial greeting marred the evening for him also.

As I said at the beginning, overall we enjoyed our visit but a more ‘can do’ approach by some of the staff would have made a huge difference.

  • Stayed: October 2013, traveled with family
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2  Thank Margaret L
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 11, 2013

We hired the whole Dower House for my 40th birthday (25 adults and 28 kids). We had exclusive use of the House, where your breakfast is served to you and the kids can run amok. And we also had a catered private dinner there on the Saturday night while the kids all slept upstairs - so no babysitting issues to deal with. It was totally brilliant - the kids spent all weekend swimming, using the playgrounds, riding bikes, having their own party organised by the crech staff, and having high tea in the hotel; meaning they were all in bed early in the Dower House so we could get on with dinner downstairs. All organised by their events staff and surprisiingly inexpensive once we'd asked our friends to make some contribution and brought our own booze. A really special occasion. Thoroughly recomended

  • Stayed: November 2013, traveled with family
    • Value
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Thank Rosemary H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Michael K, Manager at The Ickworth Hotel, responded to this reviewResponded February 16, 2014

Rosemary

Thank you for commenting on your stay with us in November.

You have highlighted what The Ickworth and more especially what the Lodge at Ickworth is all about. The Lodge is perfect for those very large family gathering and if exclusively let, you don't have to worry too much about disturbing the other guests too!

Thank you again, perhaps you'll be back for the next big special occasion.

Kind regards


Michael

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 8, 2013 via mobile

We stayed at the hotel for 2 nights on a mid week deal which included some meals.
The hotel is gorgeous and the room was very large, it came complete with change mat, steriliser, bottle warmer and travel cot. All of which were handy.
The hotel is geared towards families and even has an onsite crèche.
We used the swimming pool during our visit which was lovely and clean which excellent changing facilities.
Both nights we ate in the conservatory with our 7 month old. The food is very good and the menu selection was wide.
At breakfast we also used some the baby feeding equipment provided. All very useful.

A few points which I feel could improve the hotel would be a way of serving child's meals before the adults meals, a few families seem to struggle at meal times getting everyone fed!
Also the rooms could included wipes/cotton wool which would be one less thing to pack.
Finally a mini tour/intro upon checking in would be useful, we were given a info pack but with a baby, a visual tour would have been useful.

A great stay though, we will definitely be back.

Stayed: November 2013
Thank lucyann37
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Michael K, Manager at The Ickworth Hotel, responded to this reviewResponded February 16, 2014

Hello Lucyann

Thank you for reviewing your stay with us at The Ickworth.

We feel we are unique in how we cater for families and like to be able to provide as much as we can so everyone can have a good time.

With regards to your point about dining times, we strongly recommend on our pre-stay emails that all meals are pre-booked to avoid disappoint on arrival should desired times not be available. The majority of our guests do this and are able to enjoy.
We have put some items in our room which you have suggested so thank you this. The tour may be somewhat difficult to accommodate however, as we simply would have enough members of staff to be able to do this (as much as we would like.) We can have quite a number of families checking in at the same time and logistically this just wouldn't be possible. We do include for all guests both in the main hotel and The Lodge with a detailed map of the house and grounds so they can easily find places.

Thank you again for your valuable feedback.

Michael

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 2, 2013

I didn't know this prided itself on being a family friendly hotel so felt as though I had walked into a creche. If you are allergic to children this is not for you. However the children are offered many attractions and are not allowed into the main restaurant in the evening so it actually worked out very well. The rooms are lovely - very big and ours contained if not the largest bed I have ever slept in, then undoubtedly the highest.Strangely the TV was situated at right angles to the bed which made watching awkward. The bathroom was a good size - but I have to say I never completely worked out the plumbing. Getting a hot shower was always pot luck - but the hot water was in there somewhere if you were persistent. The spa provided a perfectly adequate massage but is small and, unusually, nowhere near the pool. Due to poor weather, and it's distance from the house I did not sample the pool so don't know how good it is. The breakfast choice was a little limited compared to some hotels, but the food quality was good. The evening restaurant was very good - excellent beef dish one night and nice bream the next. The wine list was adequate. My only gripe is that I never signed after meals so it was sometimes difficult to reconcile the final bill. Reception staff were very helpful and friendly and the porter on arrival was a delight. The hotel provides free access for the national trust property attached - well worth a visit - particularly if you favour Downton/ Upstairs Downstairs sort of TV. The grounds are huge and magnificent. So my early misgivings disappeared across the two days and by the end I was sorry to be leaving. Given a repeat of the deal I was on I would very willingly visit this hotel again.

  • Stayed: October 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
1  Thank Jeff B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed October 31, 2013 via mobile

The hotel is in one wing of the National Trust property at Ickworth so is a lovely old building with masses of parkland attached. The hotel aims to be family friendly and certainly seemed to be catering for the children when we visited. The Spa centre is small, but perfectly functional in the basement. There's only massage and beauty treatments available - no sauna or steam rooms.
The lunch in the Conservatory restaurant was very nice, though rather slow to turn up. The staff were very pleasant and friendly though with a large child's menu

Stayed: October 2013, traveled with friends
Thank MayesTripper
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Michael K, Manager at The Ickworth Hotel, responded to this reviewResponded February 16, 2014

Thank you for your review of our spa and lunch at The Ickworth.

Unfortunately, when the hotel was been designed, there wasn't the opportunity to accommodate sauna and steam room but so our guests didn't totally miss out the spa treatment rooms where situated on the lower ground floor.

I'm glad that you enjoyed your day with us and thank you for your feedback.

Michael

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