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“Good infrastructure... staff need training”

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Macdonald Portal Hotel, Golf and Spa
Ranked #3 of 4 Hotels in Tarporley
GreenLeadersSilver level
London, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
22 reviews
13 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
“Good infrastructure... staff need training”
Reviewed July 25, 2014

The hotel and surroundings here are great and the food is fine too. The hotel is let down by poor and inefficient staff. The restaurant is a good example, where they have a chef with two AA rosettes serving terrific food, but getting the attention of the slightly miserable waiting staff is nearly impossible and this adds about 1 hour to the dining experience. You just end up chasing them round the restaurant after waiting half an hour for a dessert order to be taken. The reception team seemed to be running in some new software too, so checking in and out is a bit of an ordeal. Best to leave plenty of time. Fortunately there are a few sweets on the reception counter to keep you out of mischief!

Other slight negatives are the lack of air conditioning in the rooms (the rooms are lovely though), lack of mobile phone coverage and having to pay for WiFi - which is a bit much as the rooms are not cheap.

  • Stayed July 2014, traveled on business
    • Value
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank PeteRachelfamily
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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1,902 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 (191)
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English first
Bromborough, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
6 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
Reviewed July 22, 2014

Golf courses are a good standard, especially the Championship course. The hotel itself is perfectly ok, but the staff are simply inept. I stayed at Hill Valley, a sister resort, some years ago and vowed never to return to a Macdonald's resort hotel. I should have remembered. These places are generally staffed by kids, who, through no fault of their own, are clueless. There seems to be no senior trained staff looking over their shoulders to guide or correct them.
Simply hopeless, and worst of all this time they tried to charge for an additional night's stay which was clearly already paid for two months in advance. If we hadn't questioned this and kept a copy of the original invoice it would have gone through. Never again, and this time I mean it.

  • Stayed July 2014, traveled with friends
    • Location
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank GCxjr
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Dallas, Texas
Level Contributor
36 reviews
9 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 17 helpful votes
Reviewed July 19, 2014

After being rained on all day at the Open, we arrived exhausted. The golf course is gorgeous and my husband played it. The rest of the grounds and the building remind me of the kind of hotel that Miss Marple's nephew Raymond always sent her to. On checking in, it seemed that the person at the desk was wishing we were somewhere else. Chilly would have described it. I got the impression going down the hall that a facelift might be in order. Hideous carpet, very dated. We got to our hot stuffy room and I was catapulted back about 30 years. Worn carpet, dated furnishings, internet "being upgraded" so it was not something we could use in the room. Then we found out that our hot stuffy room had no air conditioning. The bedcover was some kind of woolen combined with a material that resembled burlap and the curtains and cornice board were the same. Art on the walls, in the time warp. We had to call the desk a number of times and I finally gave up and got into the shower. The best thing about the room is the bathroom. It's spacious and the shower is very good.

We went to the bar and after half an hour, still haven't seen anyone for service.

Not enchanted and they charge like rip. £4.45 for a cup of tea! Really? And since you are on the backend of nowhere, you are their paying guest/prisoner in terms of cost and annoyance.

Room Tip: If you want a good room, go somewhere else.
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  • Stayed July 2014, traveled as a couple
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
5 Thank pdncpd
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Market Drayton, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
90 reviews
16 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 39 helpful votes
Reviewed July 18, 2014

Having a conference room booked for a training session I was running the following day, I found that I was missing some printing necessary for the course. Greg Bell (who was on reception at the time) was my absolute knight in shining armour. Without any fuss, he simply took control of sorting everything out for me. Nothing was too much trouble and I was allowed access to the conference room to set up for the morning, which was above and beyond the call of duty!

Bar staff, restaurant staff and my fabulous event co-ordinator who looked after me through the training day, were all excellent. The fabulous setting of the hotel matches up to the brilliance of the staff helping to make an event go like clockwork. Highly recommended.

  • Stayed June 2014, traveled on business
    • Value
    • Rooms
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank SSChester
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Lancashire
Level Contributor
103 reviews
51 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 66 helpful votes
Reviewed July 18, 2014 via mobile

This hotel is great, fabulous spacious rooms - we were in room 227. We were told that no bedrooms have views but the views from the restaurant and bar are some of the best we have ever seen. Excellent food and good spa treatments. We managed to check in early and the lady on reception was very friendly and welcoming, we had lunch in the bar and sat outside. The man serving wasn't very pleasant, not very friendly and after seeing me stood struggling to get back inside from the balcony at the bar, he chose to ignore me until I tapped on the window five times! The door just wouldn't open!
The restaurant is very pleasant, the staff are polite and friendly but service was very, very slow, we ordered bread before our starters which took an extremely long time to arrive, we ordered steak and asked for steak knives which took ten minutes to locate one, we were told they could not find any others! The manager of this department was fantastic though, she went to every table to check if anyone needed anything else, she was warm and attentive. I feel she is trying to improve the dining experience and her staff are lovely so I'm sure this area will improve. Spa treatment were perfect. The pool is downstairs from the spa and that is also where to toilets are located so if you are in the spa you have a trek to the loo. There was also no water fountains at the pool area which I found strange. These are just little niggles. We loved this hotel and will stay again. I have already suggest to a friend that we stay on a spa break. This would also be an amazing venue for a wedding the views would make fabulous pictures.

Stayed July 2014
Helpful?
Thank RaewynLancashire
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Wales
Level Contributor
3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed July 14, 2014

I have recently been on a golf trip to mc Donald portal hotel. The hotel itself if superb the food was also superb very nice and great service the rooms were also great!On arrival there was only one person on the bar tho which made a long wait as there was 12 of us that wanted serving amongst others in the bar! The championship course is a typical society course very open not many holes that wow you and there were green cuttings left on atleast 3 greens and bunkers were not raked not a course you would rush to go back on but the 2nd day we played the premiership course 2 minutes down the road it was absolutely fantastic some amazing holes with top class greens highly reccomend to anyone.only other downside is the price a ham sandwich was £8.50 and a pint £4.55 hence the reason we went into the village to drink ! Would go again but only of we could play the premiership course twice .

  • Stayed July 2014
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Ben H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Dublin
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
Reviewed July 13, 2014

Service was awful. Waited 20 mins for drinks and we were the only couple in the bar
Had to ring reception 6 times & personally go to reception twice to finally get some milk !!
Spa experience was dreadful
Won't be back !

  • Stayed July 2014
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
4 Thank WillGammell
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Macdonald Portal Hotel, Golf and Spa

Property: 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 (Based on Average Rates): $$
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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