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“Great Weekend Getaway!”
Review of Hotel Rodney

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Hotel Rodney
Ranked #4 of 7 Hotels in Lewes
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed March 11, 2008

We stayed at this hotel for a long weekend getaway and had a really nice time. Staff were helpful and attentive; there was always someone easily found at or near the front desk.

The hotel is undergoing renovations; the third floor is complete, but they were still working on the second floor while we were there. Despite some extra furniture scattered about the lobby, there wasn't much to indicate there was construction going on, including noise or dust. I'm sure they plan to have the renovation complete before the busy summer season begins.

We had a "Deluxe" front corner room overlooking Second Street, the canal, and on towards the ocean. The newly renovated room was really nice, with modern, minimalist furnishings, wood floors, and marble in the bathroom. It was spacious but cozy and had a nice "clean" feel to it, especially with the flat-screen tv mounted on the wall in the corner and a wall-mounted heating/cooling system (that sounds clunky, but the heater was really neat, once we figured out which buttons got it to work).

While we enjoyed our stay, there are two things to consider: 1. The beds aren't terribly comfortable. I never have high expectations for hotel mattresses, so I wasn't surprised, but these were sort of lumpy and the sheets made a lot of very squeaky noise whenever you'd move. Also, if you're coming by car, I would suggest tossing your own pillow in. 2. The entire hotel is wood floors, and it's an old building. Despite the fact that the hotel management has put rugs down in the rooms and hallways, it can be noisy, and noise seems to really travel between rooms and through the hallways. It's something to consider if you're sensitive to that sort of thing and if you stay there, maybe just be aware of it and try to keep your own noise level down. We were there in the off season so there were very few people in the hotel, but it was still something noticeable.

Second street, where the hotel is located, has several cute shops and good restaurants. We had an excellent light meal of small plates at the bistro in the hotel lobby - Beseme - and also enjoyed the local seafood restaurant down the street (Jerry's). There's a great, very friendly coffee shop right up the street. We took in some local "nightlife" with a happy hour at The Buttery. I get the feeling this town is geared for travelers older than myself, maybe more middle-aged and up. Or maybe it just felt that way because it was the off-season, I'm not sure. Either way, we still had a great time. Plus, it's only 15 minutes to Rehoboth and all the restaurants and shops there, including Dogfish Head Brewery.

And definitely walk the two blocks from the hotel to the Blue Plate Diner - the Crab Cake Eggs Benedict is terrific.

  • Stayed: March 2008, traveled as a couple
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Thank travelingDC
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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187 - 193 of 202 reviews

Reviewed October 24, 2007

My husband and I received the stay at the Hotel Rodney as a gift certificate. We orginally were scheduled for the Spring of 2007 but our reservations were cancelled a week before we were to go!....by an EMAIL (what if it had never been delivered) not a phone call stating they were doing renovations. After many phone calls to express my displeasure and finally getting ahold of a manager, they did extend and honor the gift certificate beyond the expiration date. But when we arrived this weekend for our Fall adventure in Lewes it was a big disappointing.

Lobby: The hotel lobby was remodeled way too ultramodern for the abiance of the town with white sofas and zebra striped rugs. There was no counter to check in. Just a desk off in a different room with wooden elephant chairs. At first, my husband and I did circles even trying to figure out where to register. Then to get someone to come out from the back, you had to cough or just patiently wait for someone

After check in, getting on the elevator was a bit of an experience for someone who can't do the steps. If someone had to get on this elevator with a wheelchair, I don't know how they would do it!! The elevator was old and very unsturdy and was the old kind with just a gate for a door. Very slow and I was a bit nervous watching the wall go by that we would never make it just up one floor.

Room: We thought the room was bright and charming although it only had a double bed....we we were told it would be a queen size. The floors were wooden which one would expect in a historic hotel but these were very worn and complete with spliters (got stuck by a few) In additon, they creaked as you walked...it even creaked in the bathroom under the tile flooring. Not so bad if you are the top floor, but we were on the second and had someone above us. The entire time we were in our room, we could hear when they walked around and even when they dropped their shoes on the floor. We were there for two nights and didn't get a good nights sleep either night because of the noise it created above us. The staff told us that the third floor was renovated first. I'm surprised they didn't fix the creaking floor boards at the time of the renovation.

Bathroom: The bathroom faucets leaked out from under the handle all over the sink. the toilet seat was old, worn, and scratched up. Plus the lid was broken off where it attached to the seat. It had just been propped back on as a temporary fix. It was so temporary, it broke the first day, so we reported it to the staff (once we found them). Came back after a gorgeous day in the town and found it had just been stuck back on the broken bracket yet again. After a few more uses, it broke on us again.

Check-Out: When we checked out, I asked the staff for a comment card, which they declined, saying they don't have them but we could tell our experience on tripadvisor. We did explain about the noisy floors and about the toilet (that the least they could do for a "newly renovated" hotel was run to Home Depot and put on a new one seat) but got the blank look and the explaination that we were on the floor that had yet to be remodeled. For the price that was paid for our stay, I expected the experience to be alot more than it turned out to be.

For the money that was paid out for our gift certificate and the hoopla over being a "newly renovated" hotel, I expected the experience to be alot more than it turned out to be. I will probably revisit the town but will stay someplace totally different in the future....even if the second floor finally gets it's renovation.

  • Stayed: October 2007, traveled as a couple
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3  Thank ChloeNewark_DE
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed October 2, 2007

I was pleasantly surprised when I stayed at the Hotel Rodney. I was very comfortable, my room was clean and modern in all the amenities, but retained the charm of the original structure, with the hardwood floors and large windows that let in a lot of light and made the room cheery and warm. The staff were curious and efficient, and extremely eager to please.

The town was equally as charming with great shopping and wonderful restaurants to explored. I look forward to going back as it is only a few hours from my home. A great getaway!

  • Stayed: May 2007, traveled with friends
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3  Thank mdmonroe
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed October 1, 2007

I had the opportunity to stay at this hotel last spring and had a wonderful experience! My room was quite large with a sitting area, a large comfortable bed and state of the art amentities. The marble bathrooms and new fixtures were quite a treat in this small luxury hotel. I found the staff to be friendly and outgoing offering several suggestions on places to eat and things to do. The lobby of the hotel has a modern New York feel which is fun to find in a small little beach town in Delaware. I would definately stay here again.

  • Stayed: May 2007, traveled with friends
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1  Thank ham42
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 15, 2007

I travel a lot and often stay in small hotels. This hotel pretends to be a small luxury hotel but lacks all of the amenities one associates with fine hotels except the price. It is pretentious, pricey with small rooms, unprofessional service, only one bed per room, bright lights that shine trhough glass upper window all night, no views, no pool, no breakfast, bad service. No one sits at the front desk to greet customers other than a note that suggests you ring a bell for service, at which time a grumbling person eventually emerges.

My favorite hotel in Lewes, Inn at Canal Square, was booked so I thought I would try Hotel Rodney. Perhaps I should have been more discerning when I asked The Inn at Canal Square for a recommendation and they did not mention this new option.

I will never return,

3  Thank zeldy
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
HotelRodney, owner at Hotel Rodney, responded to this reviewResponded September 30, 2007

The Hotel Rodney has been in continous operation since 1926. Last year, the hotel began a two-year renovation designed to keep the history of the building while modernizing and updating everything. The rooms are smaller than those in newer hotels, but they have the charm of original wooden floors, glass transom windows, and wooden antiques. They also have carrerra marble bathrooms, subway tile and glass showers, ipod chargers, and sophisticated fabrics. We are in the heart of town - so guests can walk everywhere. And we are not a chain. We are one of a kind and our staff of Lewes residents are very proud of the stylish hotel they serve. Finally, we urge guests to ask for anything they need. Service is what our staff is trained for. Make a request -- they will aim to please.

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Reviewed October 28, 2006

After reading the reviews, most of which were positive, we booked a two night stay at the Zwaanendael via their website. I guess I should have been forwarned when after a week I hadn't received a confirmation and had to call to confirm.
The first impression was not good. The carpets were filthy, stained and holey and our room was TINY and generally shabby. No basics ie:TV, clock, radio. A phone, one side table, a lamp, a small chest and a chair with no stuffing was all that was in the room.
The entire hotel needs TLC and the staff need an attitude makeover. We discovered the windows in our room didn't lock (there weren't any locks on them!) and they were on the same level as the flat roof of the hotel. When we mentioned this to the receptionist she acted amazed that we would have a problem with this.
There is no cafe for breakfast as the reviews and website led us to believe. Instead, guests go to the basement for toast,cereal, bagels, coffee which they fix themselves.
The hotel apparently changed hands in June this year. I understand it was an OK hotel before, but now it is an absolute disaster. We really begrudged paying their price for such a dump.

  • Stayed: October 2006, traveled on business
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2  Thank lucretzia
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 16, 2006

I've read the other reviews and am now wondering if there are TWO Zwaanendael Inns in Lewes. The one I am currently staying at has extremely small rooms, with rather uncomfortable beds, terrible water pressure in the shower, only 4 parking places. And all this joy for MORE than $160 per night.

We parked in front of the hotel when we arrived, put money in the parking meter, then entered the lobby. We had to "yoo-hoo" for assistance because there was noone at the front desk. We were given a key and told there were only 4 parking places for the hotel, but we could park free on the street a couple of blocks away if the municipal lot was filled.

No mention of times for breakfast, location of the dining room. All in all, not a warm welcome.

Our room is a 'deluxe corner room..' I will admit that you can walk around the bed and that the room is in the corner of the inn. This is our second night and I'm still looking for the deluxe part. One wall of the room as two windows which overlook the street, and one other wall with a window which overlooks the slate roof of the building next door. In the middle of the night, we were awoken when the light on the wall next to the bed suddenly slid to one side and dumped the shade onto my husband. He promptly jumped up, knocking the shade off his chest, onto the floor. I would love to have heard the people in the room below ours when we made such a racket at 3AM.

We did report the problem to the maid, by the way, who said she'd make a note of it. I don't think the maintenance people are here on weekends because the fix seemed to be putting the lampshade on the window sill and turning the lamp in the other direction on the wall.

The hotel restaurant is up for lease -- not much of a problem because there are so .many good restaurants in town. Breakfast was fine -- just don't expect the menu inside to match the one in the frame outside.

To be fair, both the hotel and the restaurant are very clean. And when we explained that we had stupidly left beach towels at home, we were provided with towels to take to the shore.

However, there are a couple of small holes in the wall, the wooden floors are badly in need of refinishing, and the 'antique' furniture needs maintenance -- the door fell off the cupboard on the desk when we opened it. Since this is the beginning of the summer season, it appears that the maintenance that should have been done during the winter slow season was sadly neglected.

Next trip to Lewes will find us at another hotel.

  • Stayed: June 2006
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3  Thank Chris S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Hotel Rodney

Address: 142 2nd St, Lewes, DE 19958-1396
Location: United States > Delaware > Lewes
Amenities:
Beach Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Parking Kitchenette Suites
Hotel Style:
Ranked #4 of 7 Hotels in Lewes
Price Range: $99 - $309 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Number of rooms: 24
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The Hotel Rodney is a boutique style hotel fashioned after classic New York style hotels. The hotel has its home in the heart of historic Lewes, Delaware, which is known for being the first town in the first state. The hotel is located in a building built in 1926, on the Historical Registry, on property originally owned by members of the historically famous Rodney family. At the Hotel Rodney the staff and management strive to meet all of our guests needs and offer a gym and business center as well as 24 hour front desk service. ... more   less 
Also Known As:
Rodney Hotel Lewes

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