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“Great value spa break”

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Macdonald Portal Hotel, Golf and Spa
Ranked #3 of 4 Hotels in Tarporley
GreenLeadersSilver level
Reviewed July 2, 2014

My friend and I had a spa break (Sunday night) here a couple of months ago. The hotel is in a great location in lovely quiet countryside. The hotel itself is slightly tired and in need of a facelift but dont let this put you off. The staff are lovely, the rooms are large, well equipped and clean and the food was great. We had an overnight stay in a twin room, dinner bed and breakfast and a hot stone massage for £97.50 which was great value. The spa is lovely with a great pool. I have stayed in many of the Macdonal hotels and the food is always good quality. The drinks, as in any hotel, are a bit pricey but still worth a visit.

  • Stayed: April 2014, traveled with friends
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Thank Debbie B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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1,490 - 1,496 of 2,025 reviews

Reviewed June 30, 2014

Last weekend I want with a group of 6 friends for a golf weekend. The site is just lovely, the golf course immaculate and most picturesque. The look of the hotel once inside is nice too. The problem starts with the staff. They just don't seem to care a lot.
So after an afteroon of enjoyable golf we went for dinner. This was awful, the menu limited and when it did come it took a very long time. The starters were cold. Some of my freinds had beef cheeks which cold, I had mushroom soup, which tatsed of dish water and was tepid. Main courses weren't much better. Chicken wrapped in ham....rubber wrapped in plastic more like. Slow service and awful food.
Later on at the bar, we asked for some food as we were still hungry. There was nothing to eat. The barman said that there were no crisps, peanuts or so forth, we could order sandwiched but only have them delivered to the bedrooms and eat them there!
Breakfast was no better. It's table service rather than buffet. Limited staff who seemed to take one tables orders and then dissappear. One has to shout and wave to get service at all. When the food does come it is cold, old or hardly cooked. Just awful. It is not hard to do a good breakfast.
It is such a shame because the facilities or really nice. The golf is excellent, the swimming pool and various sauna and steam rooms are top draw. The staff seem tired and not bothered and likewise who ever serves the food doesn't seem to care.
On checking out my bill was 3 times more than it should have been which was a shock but the did amend this accordingly.

  • Stayed: June 2014, traveled with friends
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3  Thank SlideGuitar
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 29, 2014

We went for a spabreak , midweek via a macdonalds flash sale....and were looking forward to visiting one of their premier range properties. We approached through lovely grounds and got a nice greeting at reception by Greg who turned out to be the most helpful and polite member of staff we encountered for the whole stay. We headed to our room which was large and looked nice. We tried to engage with a Chamberlain who merely grunted at us as she could not speak English.
We headed for the lounge bar for lunch and waited and waited and waited......then we got up and spoke to the one waitress on duty who was dressed in a dirtyy uniform and operated at a snail's pace...forgetting our drinks order twice......the food itself once it arrived was very nice.
We were approached by reception at this point to say they had moved our bags to another room which was actually smaller than the first one, we were confused as we had paid extra for an upgrade.
We went off to the spa and we were pleased to see it was very quiet, however this did not result in an improvement in service as there were piles of wet towels , no clean glasses in the relaxation lounge and when we asked, we had to listen to two members of staff argue with each other about whose job it was to get glasses, in the end, none arrived and it was actually two polite beauty therapists who brought us some so we could have water?!
We used all the spa facilities,apart from one steam room which was out of order.
On to dinner.....and we experienced the most cocky, arrogant and annoying restaurant manager that I have ever met. He made several boastful comments to us about his pay package as an agency manager brought in to sort everything out for the hotel and his performance carried on at breakfast.....even telling us that he knew more than us about coffee when we asked for a stronger pot as the coffee was weak and lukewarm.....he eventually agreed to bring some more....again we were astounded at the poor service.
We do not know why there are so many lazy, disinterested and rude staff at this hotel, it is baffling because the hotel is in beautiful grounds and is a really nice property?
After checking out ( and having to check billl twice as it was incorrect) the new manager asked to speak to us for feedback on our stay....we spent 20 minutes with her and she promised to look into e and get in touch with us......we have head nothing from her to date. I also filled in the MacDonald feedback form sent to me via head office...again, no response from them......would definitely put me off from booking a Macdonald hotel again....shame.
Anyone reading this thinking we are picky, difficult to please people, we are not.we like good service ...simple.

Room Tip: We paid for an executive room...worse than the standard room ?
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  • Stayed: June 2014, traveled with friends
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3  Thank holidaybugLondon
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
General M, Manager at Macdonald Portal Hotel, Golf and Spa, responded to this reviewResponded June 30, 2014

Dear holidaybugLondon,

Thank you for taking the time to write a review of your recent experience at Macdonald Portal Hotel, Golf and Spa.

I am truly sorry that on this occasion we have failed to meet your expectations. It sounds as if there were a number of separate incidents that added up to one big disappointment and I would like to assure you that this is not our normal standard of service.

I know that our General Manager spoke with you. There is a procedure that we follow in such circumstances and I know that she is glad to have had your feedback at the time, and that she will be in touch with you soon.

Kind regards

David McGhie
Hotel Operations Manager

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 29, 2014 via mobile

Poorest value for money accomodation I've ever experienced. Improvised fix on shower with zip ties. None of the power points worked. Breakfast in the room served with oj which was off, none of the things ordered.

  • Stayed: June 2014
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2  Thank ScuderiaFerrariScot
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
General M, Manager at Macdonald Portal Hotel, Golf and Spa, responded to this reviewResponded June 30, 2014

Dear ScuderiaFerrariScot,


Thank you for taking the time to make your comments regarding your recent visit to Macdonald Portal Hotel, Golf and Spa.

I am sorry if we have provided a less than satisfactory service, particularly since there are a number of team members and managers on duty who could have addressed your concerns at the time.

I would be delighted if you would contact me directly at the Hotel to discuss your experience fully.

Kind regards

David McGhie
Hotel Operations Manager

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 28, 2014 via mobile

Stayed one night and two days golf with 8 friends . Rooms lovely although we were told by a gentleman that he had also been given out room that afternoon and had noticed our clothes in the wardrobe. His friend had also been allocated an occupied room. Our key cards would then not work and the manager approached. He apologised to the gentleman but not us it's a good job they were honest. Service at dinner shocking. Table behind us complaining about delays as we sat down. Starters took 40 mins, mains another 30 and we gave up on very expensive drinks and got our own. Prices shocking and lager awful. We heard others complain and barman reaction was we have been serving it two years with no complaints. His memory was short. A single vodka and a single whiskey £12. Breakfast no better slow. Poached eggs came rock hard and cold. Swapped for scRambled and still freezing. Another cooked breakfast with poached egg same. Staff need to be friendly and smile. Never saw it once. Never again .

  • Stayed: June 2014
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1  Thank Pamela M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
General M, Manager at Macdonald Portal Hotel, Golf and Spa, responded to this reviewResponded June 30, 2014

Dear Pamela M,

Thank you for taking a moment to post a review of your visit to Macdonald Portal Hotel, Golf and Spa.

I am sorry that your experience was less than satisfactory. It is never our intention to upset or disappoint, and indeed we often get very pleasant comments from our guests, so I am at a loss as to why we have fallen so short of our normal service.

We will continue to develop and train our hard working team to ensure that we can reach our own high standards, and I do hope we will have the opportunity to welcome you back to the hotel under different circumstances.

I would be grateful for the opportunity to speak with you further regarding this matter.

Kind regards

David McGhie
Hotel Operations Manager

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 23, 2014

Just been here for a 2 night stay and whilst not initially impressed with the fabric of the building (modern purpose built hotel) the level of courtesy and service delivered by the staff both make this immaterial and completely made the stay the best we have had in years.

Food in the restaurant whilst very much minimalist fine dining presented a good choice and was delightful.

One or two niggles with housekeeping but nothing that spoilt the enjoyment of our stay.

Many thanks to all involved.

Room Tip: Go for the top floor, and avoid room 200 as everyone will be walking past it at all hours
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  • Stayed: June 2014, traveled as a couple
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Thank Guy H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
General M, Manager at Macdonald Portal Hotel, Golf and Spa, responded to this reviewResponded June 30, 2014

Dear Guy H,

Thank you for your kind comments regarding your recent stay with us at Macdonald Portal Hotel, Golf and Spa.

I have shared your feedback with the rest of our team who are delighted that you had such a pleasant stay, particularly our Head Chef, Gary, and his team.

I do hope we will see you at the hotel again very soon.

Warm regards

David McGhie
Hotel Operations Manager

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 21, 2014

Great location for our purposes and the room was well appointed in an impressive well kept setting. If you have bought this on an internet deal I would go as far to say it was reasonable price but the rack rate looks quite silly as usual. The dinner was very nice, spectacular no, but pricey it was for what it was. The staff came across helpful and friendly once engaged. I did have an extra ask about extending my check out time which initially I was a little shocked it was £20 an hour after 12 noon but I was going to the spa and hoped for a little flexibility which was given.

The gripes I had with the room was there was no air conditioning which was crazy for this kind of establishment. It was hot and I didn't like the pillows with feathers which were far from what me and my partner personally prefer. The bed was simply too big which didn't really have a point. The room was clean and but sadly I found the lonely black hair lying in the bath, which always hacks me off!

The breakfast was lovely and I enjoyed its variety and quality in the lovely restaurant setting.
I booked a hour massage at the spa which I found that experience excellent. The therapist was very skilled and found the facilities to higher than I expected. Pool was a great size and the steam rooms etc were well maintained and presented well. My only small constructive criticism is the sound proofing in the therapy rooms was non existent which spoiled the ambiance when people were walking down the corridor.

All in all the air conditioning and the pillows may be a deal breaker for me in the future.

Last but not least, please hotel owners if your going to the bother putting out a complimentary drink please offer STILL water chilled in the fridge instead of warm sparkling water!

Room Tip: if they have air con anywhere get a room with that!
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  • Stayed: June 2014, traveled on business
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Thank ecosse-explorers
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
General M, Manager at Macdonald Portal Hotel, Golf and Spa, responded to this reviewResponded June 30, 2014

Dear ecosse-explorers,

Thank you for finding the time to add some feedback about your visit to Macdonald Portal Hotel, Golf and Spa.

I am glad that, in general, you had a good stay. We greatly value your constructive feedback about the bedrooms and the Spa, which are two of our most positive assets.

I do hope that we can tempt you back to the hotel in the future.

Warm regards

David McGhie
Hotel Operations Manager

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Macdonald Portal Hotel, Golf and Spa

Address: Cobblers Cross Lane, Tarporley CW6 0DJ, England
Location: United Kingdom > England > Cheshire > Tarporley
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Parking Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #3 of 4 Hotels in Tarporley
Price Range: $115 - $242 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4 star — Macdonald Portal Hotel, Golf and Spa 4*
Number of rooms: 85
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Set within the heart of the Cheshire Countryside yet within easy access from the main motorways and towns, The Macdonald Portal Hotel,Golf and Spa is the perfect base to explore Cheshire and its many attractions and places of interest. Whether you are visiting for a pampering experience in the luxurious Spa, a round of golf on one of the two challenging golf courses or indeed a gourmet break enjoying the finest foods in 2 AA Rosette Ranulf Restaurant, Macdonald Portal Hotel, Golf & Spa has something to offer for the entire family. Portal is also the home of the first Lee Westwood Golf School in the UK and offers a combination of three golf courses and an onsite golf academy. The conference and banqueting facilities have hosted many a prestigious event and both the Castle and Waterstone Suites offer the most wonderful venue for the perfect wedding celebration. A venue for all occasions, the hotel offers 85 sumptuous bedrooms, a state of the art Health, Fitness and Beauty Spa which includes an 18 meter swimming pool, advanced Technogym equipment and a thermal suite with rock sauna, aroma steam bath, ice room and salt infusion sauna. Why not dine in our fine restaurant with its 2 AA rosettes and views across the Cheshire plains. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Macdonald Portal Hotel, Golf Hotel Tarporley
Macdonald Portal Tarporley
Macdonald Portal Hotel, Golf And Spa Tarporley, Cheshire, UK

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