After reading their description of the hotel we believed that it was on par with the majority of Bijou or Boutique hotels in which we have stayed.
On arrival we passed an abandoned vacuum cleaner in the hallway and further down had to stop for a cleaner to pass dragging a large black rubbish bag. At the desk we were advised that, as they had been very busy, the room was not quite ready due to two pillow cases not being ironed. This was 45 minutes after official check-in time. It was not a good first impression.
Our room was decorated to a high standard and quite beautiful. The en-suite however, although decorated well, was let down by huge cobwebs in corners and thick dust on all shelving and an ornament on the window cill. The shower requires cleaning to the grouting which appears to have mould stains.
There was not a menu in the room, no details of any room service and no signs to place on the door i.e.'do not disturb or clean room'.
Our breakfast and evening meals were exquisite. We took the time to visit the chef and compliment him and his staff following our first evenings meal. In our opinion the staff in the restaurant were, in the main, very inexperienced with the exception of a Portugese waiter who was brilliant. For the price and quality of the meal the service provided by this waiter is what one would expect. The waitresses were friendly enough and attentive however some of their outfits were stained and too short and almost each time they served a course it was accompanied by 'there you go'.
For each evening meal no area was offered for us to sit in and browse the menu with aperitifs, we had to ask on the second evening if we could sit in the lounge which is more comfortable than the bar area. There seemed to be no leadership or customer service skills with the exception, once again, of the Portugese waiter.
It is described as being ' nestled on the edge of Exmoor National Park' where in truth it is just feet away from a busy road both day and night. We were also disturbed by many doors banging, loud voices and laughter from other guests following a function held downstairs.
On checking out we asked to have an itemised bill as we had not been asked to sign any chit after each meal. The last evenings meal breakdown was missing and we were informed that 'this is always happening'. There were drinks attributed to our table which were not ours. This was easliy resolved. At no time during the check out process were we asked if everything had been to our satisfaction. Had we been asked we would have provided the feedback contained herein.
Although all of the above are minor to insignificant items in their own right, when taking in to consideration the Hartnoll Hotels' brochure stating it has 'exemplary customer service' and 'perfect boutique country house hotel' status we feel that, for us, it fell short of the mark and was definately overpriced from our experience.
Would we stay again? - If it were just based on to the food and the exemplary service of the Portugese waiter probably yes but unfortunately we do not believe that the majority of other items are 'one offs' therefore we would not take a chance and waste our money again.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- The award-winning Hartnoll Hotel is nestled on the edge of the Exmoor National Park, in the delightful Exe Valley in Devon. With stunning decor, sumptuous fabrics, plenty of space to relax, eat and drink and exemplary customer service, it is the perfect place to relax with friends and family or meet with colleagues Each of the Hartnoll Hotel's 18 superior double rooms offers elegance and comfort. Our comfortable and spacious bedroom's have en-suite bathroom facilities and are fully equipped to the highest modern standards. Many enjoy spectacular countryside views. Attention to detail is the key at the Hartnoll Hotel, with Egyptian cotton sheets, plush duvets, plump fluffy towels, complimentary toiletries and luxurious toweling dressing gowns are perfect for an indulgent night of pampering. We offer a full breakfast with all our room rates, which can be taken in the conservatory, so you can sip freshly ground coffee in the warmth of Devon sunshine. Why not end your day with a glass of wine in the sitting room, where guests can sit back, relax and enjoy Devon hospitality at its best - Hartnoll style. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- The Hartnoll Hotel Tiverton, Devon