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“Not Impressed > Very Bad Customer Service”

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Grace White Barn Inn and Spa
Ranked #4 of 8 Hotels in Kennebunk
Certificate of Excellence
Portland
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 12 helpful votes
“Not Impressed > Very Bad Customer Service”
Reviewed August 1, 2012

I happily made a reservation for my husband and me for our anniversary, at almost $600 for one night I had very high expectations for the service. Due to an untimely separation I called the White Barn Inn to request a refund for my money since I had to pay upfront to book the room (there were still two full weeks before the actual stay date). I kindly told the innkeeper the situation and that this was an extenuating circumstance and a very difficult time for me personally. With no empathy at all, the innkeeper told me that I would not be getting a refund and that I had 1 year to book the room again with the "credit". Unsatisfied and extremely upset, I could not fathom spending over $600 for one night of lodging for anything other than a very special night! Thanks to this money hungry establishment, I am out quite a bit of money. Be very careful when you book, they do not make exceptions!

  • Stayed May 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Service
Helpful?
12 Thank VogueEst1984
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
WBIInnkeeper, General Manager at Grace White Barn Inn and Spa, responded to this review, August 11, 2012
Dear VogueEst1984,

Please let me once again express my sympathy and express how sorry I was to hear your circumstances. When we made Your reservation, we made our cancelation history very clear before we charged the advanced deposit. Since misunderstandings can occur, we also make it a point to send an email confirmation to assure that you understand the cancelation policies.

During our conversation I did feel your pain and I tried to assure that were making an exception for you due to the circumstances. Under normal circumstances, you would have been responsible for the entirety of your stay with no future option to use the remaining balance. We did understand your circumstance and felt that the standard policy would not have been fair. That's why it was important for me to offer you to use this credit for a future stay. I also offered you a gift certificate in order to gift it to a friend or use it at any of our properties.

Kind regards,
Corinne Finn-Heyl
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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308 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
  • Sleep Quality
  • Rooms
  • Service
  • Value
  • Cleanliness
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (56)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • German first
  • Italian first
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  • Any
English first
Washington, DC
Level Contributor
41 reviews
30 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 52 helpful votes
Reviewed July 31, 2012

While our time at the White Barn Inn had a tough beginning, it had a perfect ending. My husband checked into our room which we quickly found had no air conditioning. After complaining and their inability to remedy the situation, they upgraded us to one of their cottages, which was a quarter mile down the road and on the water. The "cottage" was a 1000 square foot home - it was absolutely lovely. A large king size bed, a huge bathroom with a massive shower, a pretty sitting area, and windows all around to watch the boats come in and out of the harbor, watch the birds play - it was just perfect. I would highly recommend the cottages, although I'm afraid i have no idea of what they cost.
We also had dinner at the White Barn Inn which was a 9 course experience - we didn't have a bad course and the food was delicious. The service was impeccable - they have us just enough room for it to be romantic, and we just attentive enough to feel as though it was a special dinner. It was very expensive, but it was a special treat.
We had a very difficult time finding a place for breakfast in town - they apparently don't believe in eating out in the morning. We did find one place which was breakfast all the time - great little place and very reasonable.

Room Tip: Stay in the cottages if you've got the money...
See more room tips
  • Stayed July 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank kikicole
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Toronto, Canada
Level Contributor
9 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
Reviewed July 19, 2012

We stayed for two nights in June at the White Barn Inn. As it was a special anniversary we were delighted to receive a complimentary bottle of good champagne and charming note. We would recommend you seriously consider an upgrade to a suite as the regular rooms are tiny and the air conditioning cycles in and out all night long. The afternoon tea needs a quality control check as the tea was cold and pastries not replenished as more people joined. Take a close look at the silverware table sculptures in the dining roon. Superb & for sale. The dinner there was divine, divine divine - many special touches. Food quality and presentation, ambience, attentiveness of staff - all excellent. The sorbet in Murano glass to cleanse the palate between courses was beautiful. The swimming pool is the picture of tranquility in nature. Very attentive front desk staff but surprisingly rude cleaning staff - all in all an elegant, charming experience.

  • Stayed June 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank eveme
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Boston, Massachusetts
Level Contributor
6 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
Reviewed July 16, 2012

We were slightly disappointed with White Barn Inn. We booked a suite and the room looked tired and in need of updating. The decor was very traditional and service stiff and somewhat unfriendly (some might call it arrogant). Perhaps this inn is more suitable for an older demographic or for people who like to experience an old world setting. Also I was surprised that previous reviewers didn't mention that the inn is far from everything (the beach, the water, town etc), it is not a very desirable location. However we loved the pool and breakfast. Dinner was somewhat disappointing and expensive.

  • Stayed July 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank Tammurin
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Aventura, Florida
Level Contributor
64 reviews
38 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 74 helpful votes
Reviewed July 15, 2012

We enjoyed the Relais & Châteaux properties in Italy and decided to stay at The White Barn Inn based on those experiences.

Pros: The White Barn Inn has a rustic, but elegant New England charm. The property has a very tranquil atmosphere and the pool is hypnotic. We truly enjoyed the following services included in the rate:
1) Traditional tea, cookies and finger sandwiches served every afternoon commencing at 3:00pm are a nice touch;
2) Bikes are available on a first come basis and are ideal for exploring the area;
3) Cordials available at all times;
4) We looked forward to breakfast every morning in the beautiful barn restaurant;
5) Complimentary ironing/pressing service available. We have stayed in numerous luxury properties and this complimentary service was a first in our experience; and
6) Another service that we would like to praise the White Barn Inn on is for calling every day to inquire if and when we wanted turndown service. We thought it was very professional and prudent.

Cons: The rooms are adequate for an inn, but must admit they could improve the following:
1) Technology is very outdated considering the expected standard of luxury. The TV screen is smaller than the average US household computer screen and the phone has a cord. Although we did not come to The White Barn Inn to watch TV, up-to-date technology should be a standard of exclusive Relais & Châteaux collection of the finest hotels;
2) There were a couple of stains on the carpet in the hall and by the bed (they should have been removed prior to check-in);
3) One really disturbing feature in the room is the air-conditioning unit – it is old and very loud; and
4) Another slight drawback is that the spa seemed understaffed or perhaps too small of space because it was difficult to schedule an appointment.

The real character of The White Barn Inn is in the service and restaurant. The service is excellent and the restaurant gives the inn its elegant ambiance. For this reason, we strongly support the “dinner” dress code and commend the White Barn Inn for turning away inappropriately dressed guests (as described in some of the other reviews) or providing a jacket for men. Personally, we do not want to enjoy an elegant dining experience surrounded by inappropriate guests and attire, especially given the price point. There is a time and place for everything!

Despite the cons, we had a wonderful stay enhanced by the personalized services and restaurant dining experience. However, perhaps the rate should be adjusted accordingly given the features not up to par with the expected standard of luxury.

  • Stayed July 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank CreativeExplorations
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level Contributor
5 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
Reviewed July 13, 2012

The White Barn Inn is a luxurious place to spend a night or two. The inn itself is a cosy building with a number of rooms, a beautiful lounge, the spa and the restaurant and there are other cottages located elsewhere in the grounds.

We stayed in a Queen spa suite and it was delightful. It was a large room with a geneorus bathroom - two sinks and a jacuzzi. The suite was beautifully appointed.

The Inn serves complimentary afternoon tea with a great selection of cakes, coffee and teas.

The outdoor pool is large and heated to just the right temperature to make swimming very comfortable. Iced tea and lemonade is served at the pool area.

We dined at the restaurant and the food was sensational. As was the breakfast.

The Inn is small which is part of its charm but if you are looking for a hotel with lots of facilities (gym, tennis courts etc) this may not be for you. But if you are looking for a luxurious place where you can take it easy and enjoy great food then the White Barn Inn is hard to beat.

Stayed July 2012, traveled as a couple
Helpful?
Thank Garth W
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Stoneham
Level Contributor
17 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 12 helpful votes
Reviewed July 8, 2012

We received a gift certificate for the White Barn Inn and were very excited to stay there. The room was $465 plus a $33 tax and fee charge! Imagine our surprise when we were led up to our room and opened the door to a tiny room, the television was barely bigger than my laptop screen!! My expectation was a lavish room with a jacuzzi (shower only!). Yes, there was a small bottle of champage and a bowl with 3 pieces of fruit in it but for $500?? We opted not to eat in the dining room since it was very pricey ($106 per person AND you had to wear a sportcoat). Breakfast was lovely. Anyway, my husband and I wanted to have a nightcap in the bar our last night there and we were not allowed in the bar area because we were not dressed appropriately!! We had on shorts and very appropriate shirts but we had to order a drink and drink it in the downstairs "living room"! Now, we were staying at the Inn at basically $500 a night and we couldnt have a drink there!! Needless to say, we would not recommend this Inn to anyone. Many, many more places you can stay for that price and get much better accomodations. The only great thing about this Inn was the staff that couldnt do enough for us.

  • Stayed July 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
5 Thank Linda I
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Grace White Barn Inn and Spa

Property: Grace White Barn Inn and Spa
Address: 37 Beach Ave, Kennebunk, ME 04043-7614
Phone Number:
Location: United States > Maine > Kennebunks > Kennebunk
Amenities:
Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #4 of 8 Hotels in Kennebunk
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$$
Hotel Class:4 star — Grace White Barn Inn and Spa 4*
Number of rooms: 27
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Kennebunkport--jewel in the crown of the Maine Coastline, perfect for your own ideal stay. Grace White Barn Inn & Spa (a member of the prestigious Relais et Chateaux) offers sumptuous guestrooms that boast true luxury and comfort. Surrender to our full spa experiences... energize and beautify as our Spa Director creates your personal revitalization. And experience the only AAA 5-Diamond, Forbes 5-Star restaurant north of New York City. The setting is unique, encompassing two restored barns from the 1820's. Here savor the rich flavors of New England and coastal Maine. Your Grace White Barn Inn & Spa experience is sure to bring everlasting memories. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
White Barn Hotel Kennebunk
The White Barn Inn Kennebunkport Me
Maine White Barn Inn
White Barn Inn
Grace White Barn Inn And Spa Kennebunk, Maine

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