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“A lovely historic place to stay in a lovely town”

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Sutherland House Hotel & Restaurant
Ranked #1 of 19 Southwold B&B and Inns
Certificate of Excellence
cheltenham
1 review
“A lovely historic place to stay in a lovely town”
Reviewed October 6, 2009

My wife and I took advice from friends and visited Southwold. We stayed in Sutherland House for two nights and were delighted with the rooms and service. The decor and cleanliness were top notch.

Food in the Restaurant we had on our first night was superb, well presented and really tasty! Happy smiling staff - well done to you all.

The only complaint we have is that we saw no sign of the resident ghost.

  • Stayed August 2009, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
Thank peter_mace
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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778 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
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Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (169)
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English first
Halifax
Level Contributor
24 reviews
17 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 17 helpful votes
Reviewed October 1, 2009

My wife and I have just returned from a two night stay at Sutherland house, where we took our four month old daughter for her first break away.

We stayed in the Sutherland suite, which was beautiful. Fantastic beams (although celinings are extremely low) and oodles of character throughout the three room suite. Good quality flatscreen TVs, DVD players, home made cookies awaiting on arrival, well stocked mini bar and a good finish to the decor.

There are however some points which need mentioning, which are meant more as constructive feedback for the management (who are lovely people by the way) than criticism, but for rooms which can be not far from £200 per night B&B there are some shortcomings.

I know its been mentioned in other reviews, but the carpets were stained quite badly in our suite. Saying that, they are cream so hardly practical.

We were disappointed with the level of cleanliness in the bathroom. Lots of cobwebs and a pile of dust and bits behind the bin, plus the bathroom shelf is at such an angle that everything slides off it onto the floor.

The shower is fine, but only if your are under 5"6 as the ceiling in the bathroom is extremely low.

The bed is a double, but has 2 single mattresses....which seemed a bit strange for a B&B of this price....and wasn't particularly comfortable with the ridge down the middle

Perhaps most disappointing was the debarcle at breakfast on our last morning. Breakfast is from 9:00 until 10:30, which if you have a young family or are a business traveller is already on the late side, however on our last morning, we ordered our food at 9:00 and the waitress came out and apologised at 9:30 that the chef hadn't tuned up yet! She said "he's pretty unreliable!!!!" As we had a five hour journey ahead of us we were keen to set off this delay really was unacceptable.

To sum up, Sutherland House oozes character and is a great base to explore beautiful Southwold, and if the issues above are addressed, it could be perfect (as long as you don't mind all the ghost stories....!!)

  • Stayed October 2009, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Rosetowers79
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
sutherlandhouse, Manager at Sutherland House Hotel & Restaurant, responded to this review, October 7, 2009
I was perturbed to hear your comments especially as I was not made aware of the breakfast situation until I received your review so I am very grateful for you bringing this to my attention. The Chef in question has been given a warning over this, to explain, his 2 year old daughter apparently was ill but he should have arranged cover in time if he was to be late. Breakfast is served from 8.30 - 10.30 and we will arrange earlier if requested and again I am sorry if that was not offered or portrayed to you. As you said, your situation that morning and the response you got was unacceptable. We would love you to come back and try us again.
As for the cleanliness I know our rooms are kept up to our 5 star rating but we are unable to stop spiders creating cobwebs in this very old wood structure building. They are hoovered every day but our eight legged friends do seem to be quite prolific on this front. Your room was fully serviced but our staff will empty bins but not pick up dirty nappies left around the floor and on our beige carpets. I hope you can understand that.

I am glad your overall stay was fantastic and we look forward to welcoming you back to Sutherland House in the near future.
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Suffolk
1 review
Reviewed September 23, 2009

It is admittedly, a very small hotel. If you are looking for a spa break and a place you can get lost in this is not the place for you.
If you like the idea of a wonderful atmospheric sleepy coastal town with lots of character. This delightful little hotel which is cosy, luxurious offering ambitious food with lots of style will not let you down. It offers a very personal service and can also leave you to kick back and relax in utter privacy. Best of both, lots of charm.

  • Stayed March 2009, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
Thank MelanieSuffolk
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
38 reviews
14 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 28 helpful votes
Reviewed September 14, 2009

My wife and I have been wanting to visit Southwold for ages and her birthday gave me the ideal opportunity to plan a surprise visit. Having spent a long time deciding upon which hotel to book, I opted for Sutherland House as it seemed to offer the sort of character and quality that we enjoy.

Booking was a breeze and check-in was smooth despite the fact that we turned up at 2pm instead of 3pm. We were shown to "The Earl of Sandwich" room which I had selected because the "Duke of York" appeared to have a small bathroom and from the pictures, the "John Sutherland Suite" appeared to be lacking some of the character that you might expect from a 550 year old property.

First impressions were good, a bright and airy room with a huge bathroom. Closer inspection however revealed considerable room for improvement;

The roller blind had a few squashed insects imbedded in it which were revealed when it was lowered. The carpets are very grubby (how much does it cost to hire a carpet cleaner these days!). The furniture was mis-matched with an nice antique table on one side of the bed and an ultra-modern glass and metal item on the other side. The shelf in the bathroom had taken on a jaunty angle and the towel rail was hanging on by a thread. The big slipper bath is the centre piece and aside from a few stray hairs from the previous inhabitants appeared to be clean. It is true that it takes 45 minutes to fill but cannot complain as I knew that from the reviews that I read here before booking. The shower head leaked though which is amazing given the lack of water pressure. The plumbing was comical, I spent ages trying to stop the toilet from running as every time that it emptied a bit, the pipes made a sound like the mating call of a bull calf! The final item on the list of complains is the noise. You get a fair amount of road noise but the hotel is on the High Street so that is to be expected and it dies down at around 10:00pm but the noise from the floorboards of the room above had to be heard to be believed, it is genuinely like sharing the room with someone else and if you are sensitive to that sort of thing is probably a deal breaker, we were woken at 6am and never got back to sleep.

Now to the positives. The staff were great, polite and welcoming, when we arrived we realised that we had no towels or toiletries but these were quickly provided. The food was excellent, the evening meal was of a quality that we have rarely experienced in the UK, no pinging microwaves here. The breakfast was equally nice and their prominent use of local ingredients is admirable and pays dividends in terms of taste. The bed was very comfortable and huge, we would have had a great nights sleep had it not have been for the comedy plumbing and the floorboards creaking. The free wifi was very welcome as was the inclusion of a stocked minibar and tea and coffee making facilities.

This is billed as a Restaurant with rooms and I think that best describes it. If the rooms received the same love and attention as the food, this hotel might be able to justify the price but being able to experience a character building is no excuse for lacklustre execution. Give the place a deep deep clean, sort of the plumbing, get some matching furniture and more appropriate lighting, put a few extra nails in the floorboards upstairs and you are on to a winner, it could be fantastic!

Finally, if you are worried about the lack of parking, I did not find this to be an issue with Southwold providing a generous amount of free parking. Southwold itself is a charming place and I look forward to my next visit, although I will probably not stay at Sutherland House again, I will just eat there and enjoy what they do best.

  • Stayed September 2009, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
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Helpful?
1 Thank scol2000
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
174 reviews
78 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 210 helpful votes
Reviewed September 13, 2009

As has been stated by other tripadvisors the main issue is the lack of a decent shower. That having been said, the rooms were clean and beautiful. Evening meal scored top marks and was good value for what we ate & drank. Breakfast did take rather an age to come, but it was tasty.

Sutherland House is very well positioned for the centre of Southwold, which is a delightful place.

Final point - it was a shame they had forgotten what rate I had been quoted for the room. So do check before you sign!

  • Stayed September 2009, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
Thank Christo8
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Essex
Level Contributor
3 reviews
Reviewed September 7, 2009

Having heard such great things about Southwold we visited for a short stay. We hadn't booked anywhere to stay and were hoping to find somewhere nice and we certainly wasn't disapointed. We stumbled upon Sutherland House by good fortune and were lucky enough to have the opportunity to stay in the Duke of York room. The staff were extremely friendly and paid attention to every detail to make your stay enjoyable and personal. We were going to find a local restaurant to eat in the evening however after reading the guest reviews in the hotel room we soon changed our mind and were fortunate to get the last table. The food was amazing and so was the service. Southwold is a truely wonderful charming unspoilt seaside town and well worth a visit in its own right however if you want a truely memorable stay we would thoroughly recommend Sutherland House.

Stayed August 2009, traveled as a couple
Helpful?
Thank KateandDan32
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
gamlingay
2 reviews
Reviewed September 3, 2009

I was told on the phone the reason for the high price of a room per night was due to the fact that it is a 5 star. I beg to differ. The room itself was very nice but the huge stain on the carpet and the dirty rug would not allow this to be classed as 5 star. The hot water tap in the bath does not flow it gushes. Therefore when having a shower it goes hot cold hot cold. Just like having a Swiss shower but without any warning. Wakes you up though!!! Dinner on the first night was fine. Nice food good service. Other times was awful.If breakfast is from 9 until 1030 please dont cook everything at 10 to 9. wewent in at 10 past 10 and you could have bounced the egg around the restaurant. The next day there were much fewer people but only marginally better. Dinner the second night was a disaster. Booked the table for 8 nobody even acknowleged we were even there until 830. We eventually got our main course at 10 past 10and it was cold. We had to ask for a wine cooler (£20 a bottle for the wine) run out of rolls just offered slices of bread. No biscuits with the cheese again just offered bread. All in all a great dissapointment . The carpet throughout the restaurant and Hoyel was very dirty and such a waste of the garden,such a mess although somebody was attempting to do something with it all be it with a dinner knife and fork???? We did enjoy Southwold. Lovely place. And we came home with some fabulous Fresh Fish

  • Stayed August 2009, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank thecockerel
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
sutherlandhouse, General Manager at Sutherland House Hotel & Restaurant, responded to this review, September 9, 2009
I was saddened to read your review of our property but do wish to add a couple of comments on your review. We, as an AA 5 gold star restaurant with rooms (not hotel) do fully fulfill our requirements in all areas. Unfortunately the previous occupant of the room had left a rather bad spill stain on your carpet which we did seriously endeavour to remove before your check in with carpet cleaner but to no avail. All our carpets are being professionally cleaned (as they were 5 months ago) on October 5th, 2009.
Our garden is a very country rustic garden with a huge Weeping ash in the middle which drops small branches constantly, these are picked up every day. As you said, weeding was being carried out over the weekend and I can definately say it is NOT with our restaurant cutlery. We have some old catering forks which we use for handy man jobs that require it.
I am sorry to hear about your experience in our restaurant and can only apologise if you had a wait or we had run out of biscuits for cheese by the end of your meal. If I remember rightly we did fit you into the restaurant when we were already full and I can only apologise for not fulfilling your expectations which is my goal for all our guests.
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Additional Information about Sutherland House Hotel & Restaurant

Property: Sutherland House Hotel & Restaurant
Address: 56 High Street, Southwold IP18 6DN, England
Location: United Kingdom > England > East Anglia > Suffolk > Southwold
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Restaurant
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 19 B&Bs / Inns in Southwold
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:5 star — Sutherland House Hotel & Restaurant 5*
Number of rooms: 3
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
A boutique hotel set in a medieval building in the beautiful seaside town of Southwold. Included in THE TIMES; 30 coolest hotels on the coast. April 2016 ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Sutherland House Hotel And Restaurant
Sutherland Hotel Southwold
Sutherland House Hotel & Restaurant Southwold, Suffolk

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