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“Old fashioned family suite was not four star accommodation”

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Devoncourt Resort & Apartments
Ranked #3 of 11 Hotels in Exmouth
Certificate of Excellence
Wiltshire, UK
Level 6 Contributor
189 reviews
28 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 53 helpful votes
“Old fashioned family suite was not four star accommodation”
Reviewed May 28, 2013

We stayed at the Devoncourt for a week in one of their top floor sea-facing “family suites”. These units were originally developed as part of a timeshare arrangement sometime in the early 90s and the fittings and furnishings reflect this as they are very old fashioned and tired looking and not the quality that we expect to find in a four star hotel. However, the unit was clean and the beds (a standard double - not King sized - and one single in the main bedroom) were comfortable. There was also a bed-settee in the lounge and two very large armchairs as well as a rather battered dining table and four upright chairs. The unit can be used for self-catering for hotel guests staying on a room only or bed and breakfast basis, with a charge of £25 being made for the use of the kitchenette, but it would be difficult to cook anything substantial for four people using the very old solid ring Hygena electric hob and the slightly more modern combi microwave. There is also insufficient crockery/cutlery for four people. Tea, coffee and sugar are provided in tins in a wall cupboard and these are free of charge.
The suite had an en suite shower room in the main bedroom, but again the fittings and tiling were very old fashioned as were those in the bathroom. The carpet had been patched in front of the glazed door to the tiny balcony. Trying to get to the suite from reception through the labyrinth of very narrow corridors was a headache and it was simpler to go out through the front door of the hotel, walk towards the arch leading down to the lower carpark, and enter the building by a side door where there was a lift.
There was also a small gym in the hotel with various pieces of equipment, a Sunshower suntan unit, reflexology machines, a massage chair, and an indoor pool. We did not use these so cannot rate them, although the gym and pool seemed to be lightly used on the occasions when we did venture “below stairs” (they are in the basement of the hotel). Because the weather was mild when we stayed we were able to sit by the sheltered outdoor swimming pool and it was very peaceful, although there were not a great number of sun lounger chairs.
The hotel is about a mile from the town centre and there was a bus stop outside the hotel if you didn’t want to take your car into town where parking charges are quite expensive and on street parking is really difficult to find, particularly in the evenings.
Good things about the Devoncourt were the friendliness and helpfulness of the young ladies on reception and the staff in the restaurant, and the airy and clean public rooms (Sun room, bar area and restaurant). The quality of food in the restaurant, the beautiful gardens with access to the beach road, and the sea views from the unit (when standing up!) are also worth commending.
Not such good things were the very narrow car parking spaces in both the upper and lower car parks and the tiny little balcony for the suite which would only take two small upright plastic garden chairs. The wall surrounding the balcony was at a height which excluded any views of the sea and beach when you sat down. Other areas which let the hotel down were the old fashioned and poor quality furnishings and fixtures in the suite, the tired decor, the lack of a power shower in the main bathroom, the variability of the water temperature when using the bathroom shower, and the noise of water tanks in the roof area being emptied or refilling (couldn’t decide which) for hours on a number of nights.
We felt that the suite that we stayed in was in dire need of investment to refurbish and redecorate it and bring it into the 21st century so that it would be appropriate accommodation for a (so-called) four star hotel. The hotel exterior (particularly at the rear of the building) would also benefit from a good coat of paint.

Room Tip: Try to book a sea view room at the back of the hotel, but away from the Sun room where wedding recep...
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  • Stayed May 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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    • Sleep Quality
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    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Winner2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Devcourt, General Manager at Devoncourt Resort & Apartments, responded to this review, May 30, 2013
What a very detailed review! What is lovely about all the Devoncourt's reviews is that, almost without exception, the reviewers praise our staff for their friendly and courteous manner which, as a Manager, is not always passed on to me directly but when publicly announced, is very welcome and praise indeed. We pride ourselves in the professional manner with which we treat our guests and hopefully put all at ease.

One thing that I would like to clarify is that we are an accredited 4 Star 'Guest Accommodation' provider and this, from the AA, centers on the atmosphere and general ambiance of a property whereas the 4 star 'Hotel' rating, which we are not, majors on facilities, such as Room Service, which is something that we do not offer. We are also a little unusual in that much our accommodation was originally designed for guests staying for a week at a time and so can be quite spacious and have small kitchenettes designed for 'light bites' as we call them.

Alternatively we do also have the very lovely 'Brasserie 16,' which is the Restaurant and Bar facility here and run separately from the hotel for which, if you look up the comments previously here and on their own TripAdvisor review pages, show them as being a particularly well run and a much praised Restaurant. They offer all types of meals from Breakfast, through to Morning Coffees, Lunches, Bar Lunches, light Supper, Dinners and even smaller functions.

It is a shame the reviewer here did not have chance to use the leisure facilities as the 32 degree swimming pool is really relaxing and, being so warm, makes it feel as though you could be swimming in the waters off an exotic beach. As reviewers of us have occasionally mentioned there are often only a few visitors to the Gym and Pools and it can seem that you have the whole place to yourself!

As most of our visitors mention we are in a particularly beautiful part of the country and look over some wonderful coastline. The view, in all weathers, is majestic and in some cases quite breathtaking and I, for one, feel quite lucky to live here. That said, only half the rooms face the sea but the lounges are open to all 24 hours a day and have the same stunning views over our gardens, kept green and colourful by the ever present miracle worker that is Phil, the Gardener.

I do hope that even our fiercest of critics feel that they can come back to the Devoncourt at anytime where, given our many plus points they can see that the style, although quaint and timely to some, is particular to us and to many, the whole package is a refreshing 'tonic'.

Regards to all

Andrew
General Manager
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Rating summary
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Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (296)
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English first
Gloucester, United Kingdom
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed May 19, 2013

Stayed here for two nights at this ' four star hotel 'over the May Bank Hoilday and won't be back. Booked through Late Rooms and our room reminded me of the chalets I used to stay in at Pontins when I was a child.- it had a kitchenette but no bath , poor standard of furnishings and was directly next to the main cooking outlet for the kitchen so you could either be too hot or live with the overpowering smell of cooking.Definitely not what I expect when I pay for a four star hotel .Won't be back and will never book through LateRooms again.

  • Stayed May 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
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    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
1 Thank Mrs N
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Leicester, United Kingdom
Level 3 Contributor
10 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 64 helpful votes
Reviewed May 17, 2013

Stayed at the Devoncourt for 9 days and thoroughly enjoyed it. Found the staff very friendly and attentive, nothing was too much for them. Very spacious and comfortable apartment. The hotel has a unique character of its own, which cannot be found in chain hotels. Excellent sunday lunch. Altogether this made it a relaxing stay, with an atmosphere that is definately home from home. Also loved the gardens and the amazing views from the hotel.

Room Tip: Good to get a room with a sea view
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  • Stayed April 2013, traveled with friends
    • Value
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Helpful?
Thank maureenw03
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Bridgewater, null, United Kingdom
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed May 6, 2013

We wanted a break away and had no idea where to go! after seeing the reviews about the
Devoncourt and the pictures we booked 3 nights. My girlfriend and i had a brilliant time, we
had a sea view that was beautiful over looking amazing gardens. The beach was a stone throw and the town was just as near! we would highly recommend the Devoncourt Hotel ! we might be back soon :-)

Room Tip: Ask 4 a sea view
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  • Stayed May 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank David F
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level 1 Contributor
4 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
Reviewed April 28, 2013

This is the perfect place for a mini break. We had the most perfect weekend, the staff are all delightful and made us feel so welcome and relaxed. We arrived at night so the view of the gardens and sea in the morning was a lovely suprise. I would recommend this hotel to all ages and groups. The breakfast was yummy. You should definitely stay for the carvery on sunday - amazing food!

  • Stayed April 2013
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank EllaHalford
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level 2 Contributor
6 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed April 28, 2013 via mobile

After just having returned from my stay at the Devoncourt with my partner and 2 friends I can honestly say that our time spent in this hotel was superb.

The staff were unbelievably friendly, I can only assume that most have been working at the hotel a number of years as they seem expert at making you feel like you are walking into their home rather than a hotel. The manager Andrew specifically made such an effort to talk to me, clearly showing his passion in regard to the devoncourt but also taking a genuine interest in understanding a bit about his guests. Aside from this I witnessed him going out of his way to help an elderly woman around the hotel and talk to her about her requirements and speaking to what I assume must be "regulars" in a consistently friendly and helpful way.

The breakfast consisted of a great choice from continental to a cooked English breakfast and was a very good standard but in terms of food the star of the show is most definitely the Carvery on a Sunday. For £8.95 we had arguably the best roast dinner I have eaten and this is most definitely confirmed by the number of non hotel guests that literally queue out of the door to eat it.

Facilities - the Hotel has a well equipped gym, a sauna, swimming pool, jacuzzi as well as tennis courts which although we didnt use I feel add even more value to your stay.

From earlier reviews I had read, there were comments relating to the lack of modern decor, to an extent these are true but actually you can tell that is not what the devoncourt is all about. It has character, it is clean and most of all it is a place I truly felt relaxed the whole time I was there.

The room we had was spotlessly clean, well equipped (TV, Fridge, hair dryer etc) and well set out. However the real USP of this hotel is the view. Standing out on our balcony of our sea view room was genuinely one of the highlights of our trip to Devon. A stones throw away from the sea, this hotel has no doubt some of the best views I've come across.

Although car parking is slightly limited, you can also park on the road which I found particularly useful as I drive a large car and the car park is quite tight.

In summary the Devoncourt is a friendly, well presented hotel in a fantastic location and I would not hesitate to stay there next time I am in Devon

  • Stayed April 2013
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Ainsmithhenry
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Oxford, United Kingdom
Level 1 Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed April 22, 2013

Stayed for 2 nights, weather outside awful but nonetheless we all had a fab time. Group of 12, (Mums in their 50'S, daughters & their friends in their 30'S) We stayed in the 2 bedroom apartments & had rooms spread over 3 floors. All had comfy nights sleep. Hotel is not ultra-modern, but.... it is full of character, better than going to a hotel chain where it becomes boring because you know what to expect & where the staff seem to have a script to talk to you with as they all say the same!. Room facilities were excellent, plenty of room, well equipped in kitchen area , bathrooms clean & nice towels. Swimming pool & all the facilities were really good, gym well equipped, didn't use gym as we were all on treat weekend, but music pumping out was fab! Made to feel welcome as soon as we arrived, nothing was too much trouble. Staff sorted out taxi's for us to get to & from Exeter. All in all a wonderful weekend, don't be put off by negative comments, go & try yourself. Thank you to the Manager & all his staff, you are doing a great job & we are already talking about a return trip.

Stayed March 2013, traveled with friends
Helpful?
Thank charris186361
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Devoncourt Resort & Apartments

Property: Devoncourt Resort & Apartments
Address: 16 Douglas Avenue, Exmouth EX8 2EX, England (Formerly Devoncourt Hotel)
Location: United Kingdom > England > Devon > Exmouth
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Kitchenette Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Suites Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
Ranked #3 of 11 Hotels in Exmouth
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Hotel Class:3 star — Devoncourt Resort & Apartments 3*
Number of rooms: 54
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Friendly and well situated Guest Accommodation with a range of rooms, many with sea views, balcony, kitchenette. All have en-suite facilities, Wi-Fi and access to the 'Lifestyle' Leisure Club which is on site. Has a well thought of Restaurant and Bar operation, 'Brasserie16', serving first rate quality meals - renowned for it's excellent carvey's served on 3 days of the week. Beautiful Gardens overlooking the beaches of Lyme Bay in the vibrant town of Exmouth,on the mouth of the River Exe. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Devoncourt Hotel Exmouth
Devoncourt Resort & Apartments Exmouth, Devon

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