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“Good All Round Hotel”
Review of The Oxford Belfry

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The Oxford Belfry
Ranked #2 of 2 Hotels in Milton Common
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed March 25, 2013

My wife & myself arrived on a cold snowy Friday afternoon for a two night stay. Received a warm friendly welcome & efficient check in by reception staff. Our standard room was spacious, clean and comfortably furnished - including a large king size double bed. Plenty of wardrobe and drawer storage space. Hospitality tray with the usual tea & coffee etc. - and biscuits! Bathroom well appointed with good quality modern fittings including large shower cubicle and a further over bath shower. Decent quality toiletries and towels. Also very clean.
Restaurant very good in terms of ambience, service and menu choice/quality of food.Although very busy - including a large party - service was not compromised. Breakfast buffet more than adequate. Clearly a well managed restaurant.
Bar food of comparable quality. Service likewise. Wine list a bit on the expensive side.
Staff in all areas friendly, cheerful & efficient.
Free wifi a bonus.
Would definitely be pleased to stay again!

  • Stayed: March 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
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Thank Phil187059
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
OBjwhite, General Manager at The Oxford Belfry, responded to this reviewResponded April 8, 2013

Dear Phil187059,
Thank you for your comments; I am delighted that you enjoyed your stay with us and would be pleased to return! We look forward to welcoming you back.
Kind regards,
Julian White

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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1,160 - 1,166 of 1,746 reviews

Reviewed March 24, 2013

We have just returned from a 2 night stay at the Oxford Belfry. We stayed friday BB and Saturday on a "romantic package" as a birthday treat which included champagne and chocolates amongst many other extras.
We have stayed at many other hotels in the chain on multiple occassions and we would definately return to this hotel.
We are Breakaway Club members which I would recommend joining too.
We have rated this hotel 4/5 stars as there are a few niggles which we think could be changed.

Hotel: Well located and easy to find. All the public areas are well maintained and the restaurant/ bar areas are large. Some rooms are a bit of a trek away through a rabbit warren of corridors but after the first few times of trying to find the rooms it becomes easier. There seem to be a lot of conference suites and I can imagine that there are a lot of weddings held here.

Staff: The staff are what make the hotel, friendly, polite and courteous. Special mention to Stella (I think) on recepetion and Shawnee in the leisure area.
The staff go out of their way to help you and the only time we had a negative encounter was with the Personal Trainer who was working Sunday morning on leisure reception- not a smile - nothing, very unwelcoming!

Room: We stayed in an Executive room (344) which overlooked fields. It was a large room with a very comfy bed and all the things you would expect from a hotel room. Overlooking the fields made it very quiet which was a good thing, except I think the walls are very thin as Saturday morning started badly listening to the children next door screaming and running around.
The floorboards were slightly creaky- this didnt bother us but may have bothered the people below. There was no hairdryer on arrival but reception soon sorted this. The only issue with the room was the configuration - as a large room it seemed to lack furniture. The bed was very close to the door and there was only one comfy chair around the table (had we wanted to take up the breakfast in room offer as part of our package we would only have had one chair).
The bathroom again was a bit odd- the radiator (really the only place to hang all towels) was about a 2 meter stretch from the bath and rarely on so we had very wet towels. There was no hanger to place a hand towel either. The door stop was right next to the bath where you would place your bath mat to step out, I can imagine that some people have hurt their feet on these. The bathroom however, like the rest of the room is well appointed and spacious.
Free Wifi is a bonus. We were entitled to free newspapers so we placed orders for these on check-in, on the first morning the paper was not put outside our door until 8.30 which I assumed was due to a late delivery in the snow because any other hotel I have stayed at these are put out in the early hours. However on the Sunday morning I had to call to ask at 9am where the paper was, this was promptly delivered although it was a little embarassing opening the door in your pjs with a bedhead.
The champagne was lovely, as were the chocolates and I really was made to feel special on my birthday with a banner put on the door. Anything we asked for i.e an ice bucket was delivered promptly and with a smile.

Leisure: Shawnee was fantastic on the Friday evening when we went for a late swim. She explained where everything was and what the sauna/ steam room etc were useful for. It was a quiet time to go and at one point we were the only people using the facility.
The pool is smaller than some but still a good size and on Friday evening was lovely and warm. The steam room was great and the sauna was too - although on the Friday evening it was too hot to even stand in (im not sure if there was a temperature problem).
The changing areas are well maintained and adequate with a costume drying device etc. On Saturday afternoon the pool was slightly busier and the sauna cooler but there was still enough room to swim. On Sunday the pool was freezing and we later found out that the heating system had broken. The pool cover at the end of the pool is a little smelly and as I said previously the man on reception was a little rude and blunt on the Sunday.
We asked for some towels and we were told by him there werent any at the moment - he didnt say I will bring some through when they are ready or offer any suggestions. Luckily someone in the spa found us some but I did hear other guests complaining and at 11.45 were told they couldnt have a towel until 12.30. This does not seem right for a pool/ spa/ gym to run out of towels!
We did not use the gym but it looked to have plenty of machines and seemed under used.

Spa: As it was my birthday I was treated to a treatment with Denise (who again was lovely). It was a very relaxing treatment however I cant say the same about the spa lounge. Having stayed at other Q Hotels for spa breaks I must say that their relaxation areas have been far superior. The room at Oxford did not have mood lighting or fruit teas or spa like music, it felt like a waiting area with a coffee table and was quite bright compared to other places.

Restaurant: We had 2 breakfasts and a dinner in the hotel restaurant. I will start with breakfast - Saturday morning it was fantastic, lots of fresh fruit, meat, cheese, cooked selection, cereals, toast, fruit juices. The only issue on Saturday morning was that you had to make your own toast which took a good 5 minutes in the silly toasters they have- on Sunday they had a server making toast, where was she on Saturday? Sunday morning it felt like a different restaurant, they didnt have the same selection- some of the fresh fruit was missing i.e apricots and no alternative offered, there was half the number of pastry types to choose from (no muffins or cinammon swirls) and there was no nutella or marmite which there had been on Saturday. It seemed strange the difference.
They have all jams/ marmalades in dishes by the toast but they are not labelled. There are no side plates and knives so you cant have toast on the side and once you've used your knife that is it unless you can catch the attention of the waiters. There are also no teaspoons on the tables if you required them to stir your milk into your mug of tea.

In the evening I had expected the restaurant to have table cloths- it didnt. The tables were like being in a diner. Service was very good to begin with, we were offered an assortment of bread rolls and our order was taken.
No issues with the starters although I think out of the list of starters there were at least 4 pate's or terrines. We both ordered a gourmet Oxford burger for our main course, they were nice burgers but not restaurant standard. The chips were not homemade nor were the onion rings, this could have been made a lot better if it was to be on the main restaurant menu. Desserts were nice although my chocolate fondant was not runny in the middle.
Towards the end of the evening the wait became long for desserts and the bill, there were 4 tables in our area waiting for considerable time.

Overall the hotel is very good and we would not hesitate to stay again, I am simply being picky and have high expectations. Some of the niggles are simple things to make the experience better for others.

  • Stayed: March 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
2  Thank tilly1622
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
OBjwhite, General Manager at The Oxford Belfry, responded to this reviewResponded March 25, 2013

Dear tilly1622,
Thank you for your constructive comments and I am pleased to read that overall you enjoyed your stay. Please be assured that the 'niggles' as you describe them will be discussed with the team here so that we can try to remedy these, although I am glad to read that these wouldn't stop you from staying with us again. We look forward to welcoming you back!
Kind regards,
Julian White

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 24, 2013

We have just returned from a One night stay at the Oxford Belfry. The service received from beginning to end can't be faulted at all.

We booked a suite (stayed in St Christopher's Suite) the room was fabulous and very spacious. The bathroom was huge as well.

The fact that it was my birthday, they added extra touches with a birthday card and a banner on our door and a free bottle of wine with our food went a long way.

We had breakfast and dinner and again their wad plenty of choice and the service was second to none.

The only criticism if any is that the spa had very limited facilities.. Even though what they had was very well kept.. It would have been nice to have a jacuzzi at the least.

Lastly the room toiletries seemed very basic.. We were only provided with basic essentials such as soap/shampoo/shower gel and lotion/ It would have been nice to have extra's especially as it was a suite.

As you can see it was a very small criticism. I wouldn't hesitate in recommending the hotel to anyone.. But not for a spa break.

  • Stayed: March 2013
    • Value
    • Location
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Thank ManiNij
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
OBjwhite, General Manager at The Oxford Belfry, responded to this reviewResponded March 25, 2013

Dear ManiNij
Thank you for your comments; I am pleased to read that you enjoyed your stay with us and, like so many other reviews here, found the team here provided excellent service. I'm glad you liked your room and were able to make use of our spa facilities, which include 7 treatment rooms, relaxing spa lounge, sauna, steam room, heated loungers, mood showers, pool and gym. As you mention, we don't have a jacuzzi, but we offer great value spa breaks that are very popular and include use of all the facilities mentioned here. I hope to be able to welcome you back again soon.
Kind regards,
Julian White

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Reviewed March 23, 2013

I stayed at the Oxford belfry with 3 friends and we had an amazing time!
The hotel is lovely! Rooms are big and very clean!
We had a deal for an over night stay with one treatment, breakfast lunch and dinner all for £109.... It's amazing value! The food is lovely, the choice on the menu was brilliant and the food was a really high standard! Especially dinner!
The staff are also really a credit to the hotel. Deandro in the restaurant looked after us so well, so friendly! Offered to google any cocktail we wanted and would make it for us!
Lucy and Denise in the spa are brilliant! Best massage ever! And the spa facilities are fantastic!!
The bar service was a bit slow at times and the room was a bit of a walk from the facilities.
We are definitely coming back, and would highly recommend this hotel!!

Room Tip: Ask for a room close to reception and facilities!
  • Stayed: March 2013, traveled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Thank Davina B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
OBjwhite, General Manager at The Oxford Belfry, responded to this reviewResponded March 25, 2013

Dear Davina B,
What a great review! I am delighted that you and your friends enjoyed your spa break with us and felt pampered by the team here. We look forward to welcoming you back!
Kind regards,
Julian White

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 20, 2013

This is a popular business hotel / conference centre, and clearly likes to focus on its spa too. However, all this focus on these functions seems to have resulted in basic hotel functions being ignored.

My bedroom was quite poor. The layout and decor was standard enough, but the bed was overly hard (and I don't mind quite hard beds) and it was lumpy. The pillow quality was poor too, so the basic need of being able to enjoy a decent night's sleep was missed by quite a margin.

The bathroom had a decent sized bath but only the most pathetic shower I have ever encountered. I gave up trying to shower with the dribble of water that emerged and decided to fill the bath instead. Well, that took 20 minutes, which was only not much a problem because I couldn't sleep due to the bad bed, so I had ample time to waste before breakfast.

The only full length mirror appeared to be hiding in an ironing cupboard that had no ironing board in it. At least the TV worked well, with fully functional Freeview red button service.

The conference facilities, catering, etc. all seem resonably good. So it's probably a decent choice if you are not staying overnight. It's a pity they forgot that a hotel has bedrooms that need to be up to scratch.

  • Stayed: March 2013, traveled on business
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
Thank CaptainPacific
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
OBjwhite, General Manager at The Oxford Belfry, responded to this reviewResponded March 25, 2013

Dear CaptainPacific,
I am sorry to read that you felt that your bedroom facilities did not meet your expectations; please do contact me at the hotel if you wish to discuss your experience further.
Kind regards,
Julian White

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 20, 2013

My wife and I recently stayed at the Oxford Belfry for a two night week-end break. We were very impressed with the hotel and the staff who were welcoming, helpful and courteous. We had a relaxing afternoon by the pool on our first day but we felt that the sauna room was too hot (could not actually sit on the benches without a towel). We ate in the hotel both nights and the food was excellent with a varied choice. The breakfast is very good, buffet style with plenty of choice. The hotel is modern, clean and well maintained. Bedrooms are well equipped but a little compact, although fine for a short stay. There is ample parking on the hotel site. We used the hotel as a base to visit Blenheim Place and Bicester Village and it is very convenient for these locations, Oxford and others. We would certainly stop at this hotel in the future if we were staying in that area.

  • Stayed: March 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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Thank ChesterfldTraveller
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
OBjwhite, General Manager at The Oxford Belfry, responded to this reviewResponded March 25, 2013

Dear ChesterfldTraveller,
Many thanks for your kind comments; I'm delighted that you were looked after well by the team here. You are absolutely right, we are ideally situated for some great places to visit both in Oxfordshire and Buckinghamshire and have special discount tickets for entry to Blenheim which I hope you were able to arrange with us. We look forward to welcoming you back in the future.
Kind regards,
Julian White

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Reviewed March 19, 2013

Great hotel with very obliging staff (especially Liam Cheeseman) and wonderful value for money. We had a one night spa break from Saturday 16th - Sunday 17th March. Treatments were great, food was very good and plenty of choice. The atmosphere very relaxing and we are looking forward to returning again in the future.

There was only one small criticism - when coffees were ordered on Sunday morning they took ages to arrive and were cold due to staff shortage and being distracted. Once we complained we received complimentary cake and replacements.

  • Stayed: March 2013, traveled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Thank Denise M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
OBjwhite, General Manager at The Oxford Belfry, responded to this reviewResponded March 25, 2013

Dear Denise M,
Thank you for your comments and I'm pleased to read that you enjoyed a relaxing spa break with us. We look forward to welcoming you back!
Kind regards,
Julian White

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 The Oxford Belfry

Address: London Road, Milton Common OX9 2JW, England
Location: United Kingdom > England > Oxfordshire > Milton Common
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #2 of 2 Hotels in Milton Common
Price Range: $139 - $215 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4 star — The Oxford Belfry 4*
Number of rooms: 154
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Set in 17 acres of beautiful Oxfordshire countryside, yet within minutes of the M40, The Oxford Belfry, with 154 luxury bedrooms, is the perfect venue from which to explore Oxford and the surrounding area. The hotel offers bright, modern public areas including Terrace Bar, Restaurant and Lounges, Leisure Club and Spa with indoor swimming pool, sauna, steam room, 7 spa treatment rooms, tennis courts, and outstanding conference and banqueting facilities. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
The Hotel Oxford
The Oxford Belfry Oxfordshire/Milton Common

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