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Reviews (969)
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Reviewed August 17, 2012

Anyone considering booking a room at Congham Hall should be aware that the hotel has a policy of upgrading people without informing them. We booked a Classic room in the main house but when we checked in we were led to a Garden room in a separate courtyard away from the main house. We weren’t given any explanation and the staff member could only guess that we had been upgraded without our consent. What really astonished us was that when we queried it and requested that we be given the room that we had actually booked we were told that that room had subsequently be given to other guests! Amazingly poor service. The manager said it was standard practice and guests did not normally complain. That sounded rather arrogant to us. I don’t mind be offered a different room but to force guests to accept a room different to the one they booked is very poor customer service.
The room we were given may have been what they considered their highest standard but it had a lot of problems. We got very little sleep and were glad to leave. It was a shame because the hotel has a lot going for it. The ordinary staff were very nice and the grounds are lovely, but the hotel is let down badly by its bizarre booking policy.

  • Stayed: August 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
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1  Thank IAN F
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Julie W, General Manager at Congham Hall Hotel & Spa, responded to this reviewResponded August 24, 2012

We greatly value feedback from our guests on all aspects of our service and to that end thank you for raising our policy of upgrading people to better rooms on the odd occasion that this is possible.

We believe this is greatly welcomed by the majority of our guests, but I am sorry that in your case it was not something that you appreciated. As soon as you drew it to our attention we offered to move you back to a Country room in the main house, although you chose to stay in the Garden room. Please note that in the event that a guest requests a specific room rather than a room type then we would never move them without their consent.

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 14, 2012

We stayed for 3 nights in this wonderful small hotel. All the staff had a lovely personal touch and couldn't have made us more welcome. The food was excellent (modern cuisine) and beautifully prepared. We stayed in one of the refurbished garden rooms which had the biggest bed I have ever slept in! the bathroom was huge with an amazing walk in shower. The spa was wonderful as well.

As you can tell I couldn't recommend this hotel more! When we left it felt like we were coming out of a perfect bubble (and wanted to go back and stay longer).

Stayed: August 2012, traveled as a couple
Thank Rod H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Julie W, General Manager at Congham Hall Hotel & Spa, responded to this reviewResponded August 25, 2012

Thank you so much for taking the trouble to report about your recent stay, it makes such a difference to know that you enjoyed your visit and it gives me particular pleasure to read that you appreciated the personal touches and welcome. We genuinely do want our guests to have a great time and I look forward to welcoming you back.

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Reviewed August 14, 2012

My wife and I booked for a night in a country room for our wedding anniversary and had a wonderful time.

All of the staff were very helpful and friendly, and couldn't do enough for you. The hotel has a lovely family charm about it and the decor is just right - not too chintzy or too modern.

The spa is incredible - very modern with every amenity you could ask for all the way down to stunning tropical
Rainfall showers. We both had an Indian head massage which was the best treatment either of us have ever had - £35 for over 45 minutes of bliss. The spa is only open to hotel guests so not busy at all, and only allows children at certain times so is very relaxing indeed.

We had a lovely afternoon tea overlooking the stunning grounds and a 3 course meal (with additional amous Bouche and handmaiden chocolates) as part of our deal and this too was fantastic - Michelin style food which tasted wonderful and was fantastically presented.

There are some lovely walks around the area and a world renowned herb garden to potter around too.

A fantastic place - I would recommend it to anyone.

Stayed: August 2012, traveled as a couple
Thank Phil C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Julie W, General Manager at Congham Hall Hotel & Spa, responded to this reviewResponded August 25, 2012

Thank you so much for taking the trouble to report about your recent stay, it makes such a difference to know that you enjoyed your visit and I was so glad to read that you found all my team to be helpful and friendly. There are indeed some great walks around the hotel and Ollie our new Springer Spaniel puppy is always up for showing people the way! I look forward to welcoming you back to Congham soon.

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Reviewed August 14, 2012

Stayed at the hotel for one night on a Saturday to celebrate our friends 40th birthday. We had decided to arrive at 1pm so we could have some lunch before check in at 2pm. Unfortunately when we arrived there was a very large party celebrating a 60th wedding anniversary and we were informed there was no chance of any food until 2:30pm and when we asked if there were any alternatives for food in the area the member of staff was a bit vague. We decided to order a bottle of champagne and some crisps and go and sit outside until we could check in and get some food.
The spa is really modern and clean with a lovely pool, steam room, sauna, foot baths and two experience showers that we couldn't get our toddler out of! There is also an outside deck with a hot tub that we made good use of although a few more sun-loungers would be nice as there were only four outside and four inside and I counted 16 people using the area on Saturday afternoon so sun-loungers were scarce.
We stayed in one of the newer Garden rooms (Valerian) which is a lovely large modern room with a walk in shower and double ended bath in the en-suite. The bed was a zip and link and quite soft. There was water and apples in our room which was a nice touch. Flat screen TV, hairdryer, towels, robes and slippers all lovely and fluffy. Our only criticism of this room is that it has large patio doors opening onto a not very private patio so we had to close the curtains most of the time we were in the room as there were no nets so no privacy! some nice full length, plain voile curtains wouldn't go amiss here (our friends stayed in Yarrow and this also has the same problem).
We had booked a table in the restaurant for dinner at 8pm and were relieved to find the baby monitor worked perfectly from our room to the dining room so we could have dinner in peace. The menu was not very long, 4 starters and 4 mains, and the portions are indeed quite small but every course was a taste sensation so we didn't mind. My husband had the belly pork starter that's pictured on here and it was by far the yummiest option. We had also taken heed of an earlier review and ordered a side of vegetables with the main although I was a bit disappointed to find that they didn't really follow the standard of the other courses but were plain steamed, thrown all together in a pot and a bit tasteless. The wine list was ok, bit pricey I suppose but you expect that in a smart hotel. maybe a few more options at the cheaper end would be good. We decamped to the lounge for coffee and petite fours which were so good we were bothering the waiter for more! The restaurant service is good without being fussy or overbearing (no insisting on pouring your wine etc) and the experience was very relaxed.
Breakfast was also very good, with a good choice of cereals, fresh fruit salad, dried fruits and freshly squeezed juices. We had two full English breakfasts which were nicely cooked and presented although the mushroom on top of the black pudding was not great as the juice ran down and made the black pudding a bit mushy. Not that my husband minded as he got my black pudding as well as his! I did notice they only seemed to have one high chair though which could be awkward at busy times. Staff were a bit thin on the ground initially.
Because we had gone with some friends and had been ordering things on the room jointly the checkout was a nightmare as we had to check our bills together before paying to make sure it was all correct. Unfortunately it wasn't correct and we'd been charged for things twice and charged for something we hadn't had. We suggested at the time it might be a good idea to show the individual receipts to the customer at the time of ordering (like on a cruise ship) and you sign and confirm you room. ie if you ordered drinks at the bar you would be presented with the till receipt to check and sign so no nasty surprises when you check out. although the staff dealt with it very well by the time it was sorted out there was quite a queue to checkout behind us!
All in all we really enjoyed our stay at Congham Hall, it's a much better hotel now than it was a couple of years ago. It was a real treat and we would definitely come back.
In the absence of a feedback form, we do have a few constructive suggestions:
Some parts of the hotel are still looking tired and shabby, like the lounge areas and I hope that the current owners/Managers are going to continue to refurbish these to bring the whole hotel to the same standard.
I think the attention to detail could be a bit better. If you can't fulfill someones request, offer a viable alternative don't just look helpless.
Acknowledging a special occasion would be a nice touch, however small it might be.
Someone permanently manning the spa reception would be good.
Although I didn't mind the portion sizes at dinner I did feel the large plates looked very empty, maybe a bit more sauce or garnish on them might alleviate this although I would never suggest the chef should add anything that didn't add to the dish.
A few more pictures of the newer rooms on the website would be good, we like to see what we're getting.
The tea and coffee making facilities really should be in every room as standard in a luxury hotel, but if you must have them on request only, at least put them on a nice tray and use the same quality cups etc that you have in the restaurant and a few biscuits wouldn't go amiss either ;o)
Little things really do make all the difference to customers and makes a hotel stand head and shoulders above the rest.

Room Tip: Valerian and Yarrow are lovely modern rooms but not very private. Yarrow is suitable for disabled guests and also dog friendly. Meadowsweet had it's own little garden and is dog friendly. Garden rooms separate from the main building faced away from the garden so looked a little more private.
  • Stayed: August 2012, traveled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Thank LadySeddington
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Julie W, General Manager at Congham Hall Hotel & Spa, responded to this reviewResponded August 25, 2012

Thank you so much for taking the trouble to write such a comprehensive report about your recent stay. We genuinely welcome all feedback and it makes such a difference to know that you enjoyed your visit. Thank you too for the constructive suggestions, many of which are already underway. You will notice we have just launched our new website, which I hope you like and the refurbishment of the remaining rooms in the hotel is scheduled for this coming winter. As you say it is also the little things that matter too and we are always striving to improve in these areas too.

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Reviewed July 30, 2012

We stayed at this holel in June this year, it was booked on the return leg of a business trip to the area, our stay was on Friday 8th June.

We were welcomed into the hotel by the recieptionist and quickly shown to our room, the room was in the main house and it was just perfect, it was an indiviual style of room with a very spacious en suite with a lovely deep bath and seperate shower.

We used the afternoon to relax in the new spa facility, this spa has to be one of the most modern and best that we have used, some wonderful spa showers that have various themes for the types of shower that is delivered, never experienced before.

We had booked a reservation in the restuarant, this was a wonderful experince, the food was simply 100%, the service was 100% and the restaurant itself was just perfectly laid out and spacious, our experince was one of the best we have had.

We look forward to another visit to this hotel, our first visit was just brilliant.

Room Tip: Have a room in the old house, try the spa and restaurant
  • Stayed: June 2012, traveled on business
    • Value
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    • Sleep Quality
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1  Thank Andy S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Julie W, General Manager at Congham Hall Hotel & Spa, responded to this reviewResponded August 25, 2012

Thank you so much for taking the trouble to report about your recent stay, it makes such a difference to know that you enjoyed your visit and I too look forward to your next visit before too long.

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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