I stayed here for one night on a business trip with a colleague in November 2007. At first sight the hotel looked promising. It's in a nice location on the edge of the Pennines and appears to have good facilities.
The rooms were the first disappointment. Cold and charmless with dark varnished wood furniture and poor lighting. This was suprising as (although only 3 star) the hotel seemed to market itself as a spa which implies a degree of comfort/luxury.
We had a pre-dinner drink in the bar where the barman seemed incapable of taking orders for more than one drink at a time and kept disappearing whilst serving us. We ate in the strangely decorated restaurant which I think is intended to be quaint and charming, filled as it is with various old knick-nacks, an assortment of pictures and a strange, stained glass partition topped with a thatched roof(!) but appeared to our eyes tired and tacky. It did, however, provide us with an entertaining half-hour playing "fantasy, lets redecorate this restaurant on a budget".
The food was good - they clearly have a competent chef here and this proved to be the only highlight of our visit. The waiting staff at dinner were numerous and polite if a little inefficient.
Breakfast proved a less pleasant experience. There were very few customers in the restaurant when we arrived with numerous staff (different from night before) milling about greatly pre-occupied by tasks other than serving. We were shown to a table by a waitress who did not explain where the breakfast buffet was (it isn't obvious) and when we requested freshly cooked breakfasts replied " oh, you want cooked do you?" - delivered in a tone of voice I think designed to indicate that she wasn't best pleased.
As two females, it was fascinating to observe the difference in service provided to two businessmen who entered the restaurant shortly after us. They were politely greeted, shown the location of the breakfast buffet, offered cooked breakfast and eagerly waited upon.
As we checked out, we were alarmed at the size of the bill. We queried this and it became clear that we had both been charged for 2 breakfasts each. This had been calculated on the basis that we had each occupied a double room. I regret to say that a refund was not immediately forthcoming and we were made to wait whilst the restaurant manageress was summoned to confirm that we were not lying and had not been accompanied to breakfast! A refund was eventually made.. after an humiliating wait. This made us very cross - we were treated like a pair of criminals, rather than paying customers. The receptionist and restaurant manageress were both surly and unapologetic. There was another younger receptionist on duty who was very polite and looked faintly embarrased by her colleagues behaviour.
I think the fundamental problems with this hotel is poor management and a lack of staff training. The staff are not given the means to do the job well and morale is clearly suffering as a result.
Needless to say, I am highly unlikely to ever stay at this hotel again.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- This 3 star hotel is a collection of converted 17th-century farmhouses with 131 rooms, located on the edge of the Pennine Moors. Ideal for visiting Manchester, Bolton, Preston, Blackpool, Haydock Racecourse, Chester Zoo or the nearby Ribble Valley. 25 min from Manchester city centre and close to major road networks. Self contained conference centre accommodating up to 700 delegates. Courtyard Restaurant, Courtyard bar, Tea Shop, and Village Spa including indoor pool, technogym, sauna and beauty rooms. 24 hour room service, free parking. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Mercure Last Drop Village Hotel And Spa
- Mercure Last Drop Village Hotel Bolton
- Last Drop Village Bolton
- Last Drop Hotel Bolton
- Accor Last Drop Village Hotel