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“Great holiday - Hope to return next year”
Review of Haulfryn Finlake

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Haulfryn Finlake
Certificate of Excellence
Crawley, United Kingdom
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
“Great holiday - Hope to return next year”
Reviewed August 20, 2011

We have just returned from an excellent week's stay at Finlake. We are 2 adults and 2 children (aged 10 and 7).

Accommodation - We booked one of the 2 Bedroom Country Lodges (VIP) through Hoseasons. It was extremely clean and well equipped, the only minor issue we had was that we found that there was not enough cupboard space in the kitchen, which was due to a full size fridge, freezer and dishwasher. We think this lodge may be privately owned so I guess you have to accept that others prefer all of the the mod cons and therefore some thing else has to give. We soon got used to the cereal boxes, etc. being on the side. We paid a bit extra for the VIP version so that we could also have use of the private hot tub. We're glad we did as having this extra was a real luxury for us.

Activities - We are used to staying in Center Parcs, therefore one of the reasons we chose Finlake was for the activities. There aren't as many activities as Center Parcs, but this didn't bother us as the Activity Staff were brilliant and made everything fun for the kids (and us adults too!). The activities are reasonably priced, and some are free (swimming and tennis/pitch and putt, if you have your own equipment). Advice is to book the activities in advance if you can before the actual day. If you are a family, I would throughly recommend doing the raft building together, but be prepared to get wet!

The kids also made use of the Riding School and Tree Top/Climbing School which are run under different management, but are on site. Both activities and staff were great and also reasonably priced.

Entertainment - We only watched the Wild Show which is a show where a member of a local zoo shows off some wild animals. My 7 year old loved this. The same man then also did games for the kids. Again, this was thoroughly enjoyed by my 7 year old. We didn't watch any of the other entertainment, therefore I am unable to comment on this.

Food - We ate a few times in the on-site restaurant. The restaurant has been refurbished and the food is very good. Can be a little bit more expensive than your local pub/restaurant, but you would expect that for convenience. My advice is to book in advance if you can as certain nights can be very busy (i.e. Carvery or Chinese Night).

Cleanliness - I have to say that the site was spotless. There was always members of staff, cleaning and maintaining the site. I must just point out that certain accommodations are on hills, therefore if you have a pushchair or wheelchair that you have to push, be prepared for a bit of hard work.

Staff - All staff were very friendly and gave everyone a welcome.

Shop - There is only a Farm Shop on site. This tends to sell local produce along with newspapers and fresh bread. If you are after anything branded, then I suggest you either bring it with you or venture out (a Tesco Superstore is about 15 mins away).

Beauticians - Unfortunately we didn't have enough time to book any treatments (although I would have like to), therefore cannot comment on this.

In summary, we had a very enjoyable holiday (even though it did rain a couple of times)and the kids have said they prefer this even to going a abroad! We liked it so much that we hope to return next year.

  • Stayed August 2011, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Sleep Quality
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
4 Thank Mburb1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
HaulfrynMarketing, Customer Relations Manager at Haulfryn Finlake, responded to this review, August 23, 2011
Thank you for taking the time to leave such a comprehensive review on Finlake. We do appreciate the time you have taken to leave such detailed information and it is always pleasing to hear that you enjoyed your stay with us.
We hope to welcome you back in the future.
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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English first
Nottingham, United Kingdom
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed August 6, 2011

We paid absolutely top rate for this trip - £1700 for a week. The most disappointing part was that the luxury lodge we bought was just too small with terribly inadequate soundproofing. Whoever designs the Hoseasons website is a genius as you can't actually see what the accommodation looks like. For my money, a through lounge/diner/kitchen is not big enough for the average family. Yes, the spec is great - hot tub, sauna etc but packed into a tiny space with a tiny veranda - by day three we were going a bit loopy. The park itself is again ok but the bar is way overpriced and the restaurant is rubbish and overpriced. My son had a rib eye steak which was full of fat. Unacceptable. We own our own restaurant so we know about margins and quality and this is just not right.

Finally the property did not even have a DVD player which in rainy Britain is a necessity.

I am really sad and disappointed and feel very ripped off. i know there is no redress when you've booked something which does not live up to expectations, but gosh that makes me annoyed. At the very least Hoseasons should be very transparent about what they are offering in terms of accommodation - these are glorified caravans. I defy anyone to sleep if there is a downpour. It;s just not good enough for the money. I would not recommend this site to anyone.

  • Stayed August 2011, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Sleep Quality
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank malesamanda
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
HaulfrynMarketing, Customer Relations Manager at Haulfryn Finlake, responded to this review, August 23, 2011
Thank you for taking the time to leave your review on Finlake. We are obviously extremely sorry that the site did not live up to your expectations.
Taking the price you paid and the description you have given regarding the accommodation into consideration I am assuming that you booked one of our Woodland Deluxe Lodges which are scandinavian A frame lodges and cannot be classed as caravans. I cannot comment on who designs Hoseasons' website, however they do have a video of our park which gives you an idea of the inside of the accommodation. We also have our own website which goes into more details on all types of accommodation and has plenty of inside photos. In addition Hoseasons have a customer service team available to answer any questions you may have prior to booking or before you arrive on park and the park are also happy to answer any questions and offer advice.
I am sorry that you were unhappy with the quality of food at the restaurant. You do not state whether you brought this to the attention of anyone at the time? There is always a supervisor available to address any concerns and resolve them to your satisfaction.
I asked the park to check regarding the DVD player. They have checked all the deluxe units and all have DVD players - either as seperate or integrated into the TV. Our reception team are available every day to help and assist if any problem arises and should you have brought this to their attention they would have assisted you in locating it.
It is never our intention for our customers to be disappointed and I am obviously concerned that the site fell short of your expectations. I would suggest that if you havent already done so you contact Hoseasons with your concerns.
Once again thank you for your comments, they are gratefully appreciated.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
kendal
Level 4 Contributor
17 reviews
10 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 16 helpful votes
Reviewed August 6, 2011

Stayed at Finlake the last week before kids broke up for summer holidays. We booked two seperate accommodations, country lodge four and country four platinium. Would advise anyone to pay the extra £50 for the platinium, our caravan was excellent (12, The Tors), my parents place was clean but very dated inside and not as well laid out. We did arrive early for check in due to good traveling time. Gentlemen at reception was a bit 'surly' and took our mobile number so he could inform us when we could check in. Not the best first impression, he may of even of been the manager, suggest he goes on one of them customer service course he probably sends the staff on!!
Many of the staff are young seasonals but were perfectly ok. We had lunch at the carvery on the sunday which was very good, staff were helpful and friendly which contradicts previous comments, although we went early and only two tables were taken.
The site is very large, well keep and the 9 hole golf course was fanastic for free if you bring your own clubs.
Indoor pool was good, similar in size to most hotel pools, outdoor one was quite cold, but thats due to lack of sun on it!
Disappointing that there was no evening entertainment until the school holidays, although not sure many would watch it as the place seemed very quite and most prefered to stay at their lodges in the evening.
Overall pretty good, worth the money we paid, however certainly not worth the £450 price hike to go a week later during the school holidays.

  • Stayed July 2011, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Sleep Quality
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank felly09
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
HaulfrynMarketing, Customer Relations Manager at Haulfryn Finlake, responded to this review, August 15, 2011
Thank you for taking the time to leave your review on Finlake. We do appreciate all feedback as without this we cannot improve our service to you.
I am sorry that you did not receive a warm welcome. I have fed this back to the park to ensure all team members management or otherwise make a good first impression to all our customers.
I was happy to read that there were many positive parts to your holiday and hope that we have the pleasure of your custom again in the near future.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Derby, United Kingdom
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
Reviewed August 6, 2011

We travelled as a family of four (2 teenage boys) with a dog and were impressed to find that staying with a dog didn't mean staying in third class accomodation as it does in some well known holiday providers! We stayed in a VIP lodge with hot tub. The accomadation was very spacious, modern and clean.
We'd certainly visit again.

  • Stayed July 2011, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Sleep Quality
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
3 Thank Juliz42
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
HaulfrynMarketing, Customer Relations Manager at Haulfryn Finlake, responded to this review, August 15, 2011
Thank you for taking the time to leave your review on Finlake. We do appreciate all customer feedback and it is especially nice to read such positive comments. We do have a number of pet friendly units available on site throughout the different categories of accommodation we offer and I am pleased that you were happy with the accommodation allocated.
We look forward to welcoming you back to Finlake in the future.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
York, United Kingdom
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed August 5, 2011

I stayed at Finlake with my partner and children during July and had a fasntastic time. The site looks absolutely beautiful when you arrive along a winding drive and doesn't dissapoint as you drive further into the park. We were met in reception by a Manage who was very helpful and explained where everything was on parl. When we got to our lodge it was cleaned to a very high standard. We did find a slight fault but on reporting this to reception a maintenance man was with us within half and hour and had sorted it. He was also very polite and professional so we can't even say this was an issue! We did eat in the restuarant twice over the week and I agree the staff are young however this didn't seem to affect our service at all. The prices also seemed reasonable and the food was as good as it looked. We also booked out children into some of the activities and the instructors were so good our kids kept asking to go onto more activities. Sam and Aaron seemed to be the favourite!
During the week we did have one concern which again we reported to reception, again they were very helpful and this time the ops manager came to see us. He listened to our concerns and again it was all sorted within a matter of minutes. I cannot fault the service from any of the team at Finlake.
The only fault we could say is on the on-site facilities, the indoor pool is a bit small and the outdoor pool could do with being heated. However the high standards of all the staff and the standards to which the park itself is kept meant we didnt care.
Thank you to everyone who made our holiday fantastic. We will be back and the only thing we will change is to book a lodge with a hot tub!!!

  • Stayed July 2011, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Sleep Quality
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank georgeh77
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
HaulfrynMarketing, Customer Relations Manager at Haulfryn Finlake, responded to this review, August 15, 2011
Thank you for taking the time to leave us your review on Finlake. It is always pleasing to read such good comments and how much you enjoyed your time there.
We are working very hard to make sure we are getting it right with regards to our customer's experience and your comments regarding the helpfulness of team members has been passed onto the park to share with the individuals.
We hope to see you back at Finlake within the near future!
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Irvine, United Kingdom
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
Reviewed July 29, 2011

We visited Finlake in mid July. A 10 hour drive and 2 very excited boys (6 & 4) later we collected the keys to our woodland lodge (4). 5 minutes later back to the front desk with said keys.

The problem were as follows: lodge was old and smelling or damp, decor was wanting, furniture was clean but from a different generation and the lodge looked like the set from Calamity Jane (a really old western)! To stay here for a week would have resulted in 2 very unhappy parents. At the front desk I was directed to who would be a very helpful lady. She listened to my concerns and agreed to move the family to a more suitable lodge. She found 3 lodges to view and we were to choose our most prefered option. One of the lodges came with a surcharge (£150 initially then reduced to £75). All these lodges were far superior to the original lodge with the premium lodge being to a very high standard. We settled on a lodge close to the site centre. I can honestly say that lady was fantastic.

In our new lodge and things going ok. Wife gave the lodge a good clean as it wasn't the cleanest (more to follow) and we started our holiday.

We decided to eat in the centre restaurant on the 1st evening. The food was excellent all week, however, on the very first night the standard of service was decidedly lacking. The staff were young (no issue here) and appeared to be flippant and slightly unprofessional, they got our bill wrong and just seemed to be all over the place. It was also very expensive!!

The following day we booked our boys onto some of the "Go-Active" activities. We booked the football, fundementals and tri-golf. The football was delivered by an enthusiastic young instructor who took the boys and parents to a high corner of the site to what can only be described as a piece of barren ground. Although it was fun (all the dads played to make up the numbers) it was; a H&S accident waiting to happen, was not structured in any way and was just a kickabout game of football. Very cheeky even asking for the £8 for the two boys (at least the dad's went free). The fundementals was very good as was the tri-golf, even if during tri-golf our boys were the only 2 who turned up. Overall the activities are ok. The football needs addressing immediately. The horse riding was also very good.

On the second day a manager came to the lodge with a complementry bottle of wine, just to say sorry for our initial experience. Also to check that no one in the family had any pet allergies (why we thought), as this particular lodge was normally offered to families with pets. That explained some of the hairs found in the lodge. It is also worrying as what would have happened if someone did have an allergy, no harm done and it must have been an oversite. What this does show however, is the rapid response of the management team.

The staff at the bar are very off putting and talked about guests once they left the bar. There is a fundemental failing between the management, senior staff and the service staff.

There are workers who privately rent lodges on site (no issue here) who use the bar area after work in their work clothes. I didn't drive 10 hours to take my family to a working mans bar on holiday.

The biggest problem we have with Finlake and an issue we never expected is the problem with entertainment. We never thought about this when booking our holiday and Hoseseasons made no comment on their website. However, to arrive the week before the English schools broke up and to be exposed to the centre gearing up for the imminent arrival of peak season was extremely disheartening. Posters with the headline, "All summer long" and an entertinment list on tables was frankly unfair. We felt let down. A disco area which was closed all week was being prepared, again unfair. The summer starts in June not July. We spoke to a few families who also felt let down. The whole week felt like the final dress rehearsal for the coming weeks.

Overall, the experience of Finlake is one of dissappointment, there are plaques proudly showing off the awards the site has won. However, we paid much less last year for a similar holiday at Dacre Lake in Yorkshire and in return got a lodge which none of the Finlake lodges come close, a hot tub and a to your door friendly service. We will think twice now about Finlake and feel it was not worth the money.

  • Stayed July 2011, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Sleep Quality
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
5 Thank Judith1306
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
HaulfrynMarketing, Customer Relations Manager at Haulfryn Finlake, responded to this review, August 11, 2011
Thank you for taking the time to leave your review on Finlake. We do appreciate all feedback from our customers as without this we cannot improve.
I am sorry to read the many concerns that you had throughout your holiday and would like to take the opportunity to address some of them.
I am sorry that you did not like the original accommodation you booked. We try to be as candid as possible with our accommodation descriptions, however understand that not all of the types will suit everyone's tastes. We do have many different levels of accommodation which do vary in size, quality and type. I thank you for your comments concerning the person who helped you and am glad we were able to offer you a suitable alternative.
I have noted your comments regarding the restaurant and bar staff and have shared these with the restaurant manager. I apologise that you found some of the staff unprofessional. It is worth noting that we always have a manager or supervisor on duty within the bar and restaurant. You can request to speak with them regarding any issues you may have with your experience there.
I would like to address your concerns over the Go Active sessions. Our health and safety department are based on site at Finlake and have no concerns over the football area. The session is listed as a football fun session with no information re the session content and is intended as a kick about. This activity was audited by Hoseasons Go Active last week and received 96%. Im sorry you did not enjoy it. With regards to the golf activity it is unfortunate that your children were the only ones who attended. It is worth noting that all other Go Active parks cancel any sessions where less than 6 people are booked. At Finlake we do not do this as we do not wish to disappoint any of the children.
With regards to the entertainment - again I am sorry that you were disappointed. Hoseasons have 3 different types of holiday park - family fun, relax and explore and lodge escape. Any park listed as family fun does mention within the description that it has evening entertainment. Finlake is listed as a relax and explore and does not mention in the brochure or online that we offer evening entertainment. I am therefore sorry that you were expecting this.
It is never our intention to disappoint our customers and on behalf of the Haulfryn Group, we are sorry that you did not enjoy your stay with us. I am more than happy to discuss anything further with you should you wish. Please send me a private message on here with your contact details and I will contact you directly.
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England
Level 2 Contributor
4 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
Reviewed July 27, 2011

Couldn't fault the accommodation. We had a premier lodge with sauna and hottub. The view was great. Lodge very clean. Hot tub was warm on arrival and was used almost immediately! The shower on the ground level was slightly bizarre in that it didn't have a screen or shower curtain so the whole room (including toilet) got wet. It was supposed to be a wet room I guess but not really practical.
On site activities were quite expensive, eg, £15 per child for archery. Go Ape, £25 per child. Brochure said golf clubs were available to hire but when I enquired, they didn't have any at all. On site shop was expensive and didn't really stock much but there is a supermarket approx. 2 miles away.
Internet expensive at £20 for 4 days. Only one laptop can be logged in at any one time. 3G not reliable.
Would definitely go again.

  • Stayed April 2011, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Sleep Quality
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Jenny1963
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
HaulfrynMarketing, Customer Relations Manager at Haulfryn Finlake, responded to this review, August 8, 2011
Thank you for taking the time to leave your review on Finlake. We do appreciate all feedback as it helps to improve our park and I was pleased to read on a whole you enjoyed your stay.
I have noted your comments regarding the wet room and the price of activities. The activities are part of the "Go Active" range offered by Hoseasons and the prices are set by them. I will forward your comments to them. With regards to the golf clubs there may have been a misunderstanding as we do have clubs to hire, however there may just have been none available at the particular time you asked. I have also passed on your comments regarding the shop as this is an area we are currently looking to improve and are seeking feedback as to what our customers are looking for.
Thank you once again for your feedback and we hope to see you again in the future.
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 Haulfryn Finlake

Property: Haulfryn Finlake
Address: Barley Lane, Chudleigh, Dartmoor National Park TQ13 0EJ, England
Location: United Kingdom > England > Devon > Dartmoor National Park > Chudleigh
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Kitchenette Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 2 Specialty Lodging in Chudleigh
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Hotel Class:5 star — Haulfryn Finlake 5*
Number of rooms: 350
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Ideally located on the edge of Dartmoor yet still close to stunning beaches, Finlake combines 130 acres of magnificent Devon countryside, miles of beautiful woods, an abundance of wildlife and outstanding leisure facilities to create the perfect holiday location.At Haulfryn Finlake we offer an exclusive range of caravans and lodges for the discerning holiday home owner, as well as fantastic short break holiday getaways. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Haulfryn Finlake Hotel Chudleigh
Haulfryn Finlake Chudleigh, Devon

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