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“A really characterful hotel” 5 of 5 bubbles
Review of Royal Oak Hotel

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Royal Oak Hotel
Ranked #2 of 3 Rosthwaite B&B and Inns
Certificate of Excellence
Sheffield, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
7 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
“A really characterful hotel”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed July 12, 2014

As far removed from the chains as you can get! A historic building, in a really great location. A smallish room, but this is what comes with being built a very long time ago.
We loved the dinner gong at 7.30 and all the guests sitting down to eat the same dishes together in the dining room. Home cooking along with lots of freshly cooked vegetables and tasty - just what we wanted after a long day on the C2C. Do ring ahead to check what the menu will be - I guess there would be an alternative if you don't like it. Good value wine list.
Friendly helpful staff and our bag had been taken up to our room. Other guests very friendly and chatty too.

  • Stayed June 2014, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank 94Fred_the_Tyke
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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242 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
    132
    60
    32
    9
    9
See reviews for
37
125
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Rating summary
  • Location
    5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (53)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Any
English first
York, United Kingdom
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed July 9, 2014

We have just returned from yet another brilliant stay at the Royal Oak Hotel in Rosthwaite. The hotel, with its good home cooking and very friendly atmosphere, is the perfect and unique place to stay to explore exquisite Borrowdale and the rest of the Lakes. We are already looking forward to our next visit.

  • Stayed June 2014, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank robertj p
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Kendal
Level Contributor
3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed July 1, 2014

Cosy and friendly, this traditional Lake District hotel is set in a lovely village. We only stayed one night, while walking the Cumbria Way, but we were well looked after, with delicious home made food - leek and potato soup, Cumberland sausage, and a delicious black currant ice cream and merangue desert, all clearly home made and full of flavour. Our bedroom was simply furnished, but clean and cofortable, with ensure bathroom. Thanks for your welcome, and for welcoming our dog too.

  • Stayed June 2014, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank Lesley W
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level Contributor
11 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed June 25, 2014 via mobile

We had a twin room for two nights b&b in perfect weather so could make the most of the fabulous walking on the doorstep. The room itself was very clean, quiet and quite comfortable, good wardrobe space, but my mattress sagged a biit, the shower was hard to control and there was no TV in the room. The service was excellent however. We were welcomed with a complimentary cuppa and our host took extra trouble to provide a salad instead of bread in our packed lunches each day. Breakfast was well-cooked and low-fat but the portions could have been bigger. All in all a very enjoyable stay.

  • Stayed June 2014
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank yvhk
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Stockton-on-Tees, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
29 reviews
12 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 15 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed June 24, 2014

We met some great people during our 3 day stay in this friendly, comfy inn. It's classy in an understated way that has obviously been lost on some. Selfishly that's a good thing, as they won't be back! Food was fab - best Bakewell Tart ever. We will be back with Annie & Wilf - thank you.

  • Stayed June 2014, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank ColWil55
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Bradford, United Kingdom
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed June 22, 2014

It's always interesting when there are discrepancies on Tripadvisor. Sometimes it's down to the hotel being inconsistent. Sometimes it's that you get a guest who's always hard to please. Sometimes it's simply that a person hasn't done their research and has booked the wrong place.

As one of the many, many 'regulars' at the Royal Oak, I actually felt personally upset at the two negative reviews posted recently, and feel they must be in the third category. To our family, and plenty of others, it's a very special place where there is always a friendly welcome, and to which we return again and again.

You won't find a 'corporate' experience here, though. There are elements that at first sight seem old-fashioned; quaint, even. The dinner gong. That set menu. The banishment of internet access to a back room, so that in the main lounges guests actually sit and talk to each other about their days on the fells.

Yet it isn't naively or unthinkingly time-warped. The Royal Oak knows what it is doing. It makes subtle changes when appropriate. It's a perfect place for people who love walking and can appreciate simple pleasures. It's friendly and laid-back, yet incredibly efficient, and totally fit for purpose. Most guests return year after year. It's almost a community.

Those regulars understand that in a small establishment, a set meal time and a set menu mean that good food can be cooked freshly. I've always found it wholesome and plentiful, and consider the lack of choice a small price to pay for avoiding mass-market cook-chill fare, which would be the gruesome alternative. It's not radical or nouvelle cuisine; go elsewhere if that's your only style of eating. Staff do adjust for individual allergies and preferences without any problem.

Helena B is completely right when she says that "Whoever doesn't like it doesn't have to come back!" The Royal Oak does have an idiosyncratic classiness, but perhaps it isn't for everyone. You have to 'get it'; you have to buy in to what is different and distinctive. Don't book if you want to choose from fifteen options direct from the depths of a freezer. Do your research, and understand and appreciate what you're experiencing.

In my opinion, the Royal Oak is a gem.

  • Stayed April 2014, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
2 Thank PhilipASJ
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Worcester, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
15 reviews
10 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed June 22, 2014

I cannot believe the negative reviews from a tiny handful of people. We have been staying at the Royal Oak since 1976 and love the place. It is not a boutique hotel, but a family run business in a fabulous valley. It caters for walkers (or retired walkers in our case!). It is completely honest in the way it describes itself and does not pretend to be anything different. It is friendly, comfortable and welcoming and the food is exactly what you need after a day outdoors. We have stayed in all kinds of hotels and enjoy the different experiences they offer, but the one that holds our heart is this one

Stayed March 2014, traveled as a couple
Helpful?
1 Thank Rosemary04
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Royal Oak Hotel

Property: Royal Oak Hotel
Address: Borrowdale | Keswick, Rosthwaite, Borrowdale CA12 5XB, England
Location: United Kingdom > England > Cumbria > Lake District > Borrowdale > Rosthwaite
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Suites
Hotel Style:
Ranked #2 of 3 B&Bs / Inns in Rosthwaite
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:2.5 star — Royal Oak Hotel 2.5*
Number of rooms: 14
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The Royal Oak is a small traditional family run hotel ideally situated in the "Heart of Borrowdale", six miles south of Keswick. Once an 18th Century farmhouse, it has been established as a walkers' hotel for over 100 years. Our English breakfasts and home cooked dinners sustain even the most energetic and although we do not provide a choice, we take great care to select varied and appealing menus. Packed Lunches and special diets are also available. ... more   less 
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