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“Lucky find.” 4 of 5 bubbles
Review of Penygawse Guest House & Tea Rooms

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Penygawse Guest House & Tea Rooms
Ranked #7 of 13 Llandovery B&B and Inns
Certificate of Excellence
2 reviews
“Lucky find.”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed October 5, 2011

We hadn't planned to stay here, but my girlfriend took ill with a nasty bug.

They were very accommodating and kind.

We had the family room which was spacious and nicely renovated.

I had the breakfast the next morning and it was up there with the best.

The entrance at the back of the building is a bit of a strange set up and yes maybe a little messy.

BUT l simply can't understand the person that gave them a 1. It is unfair and wrong.

  • Stayed May 2011
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank cravendale
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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64 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    5 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (15)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • Any
English first
Market Weighton, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
54 reviews
24 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 32 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed September 26, 2011

We were taking in some fine motorcycling roads with friends in Summer and camped in Llandovery, but going in September we decided to assume it would rain and opt for the comfort of a B and B instead. It turned out it was the weekend of the sheep festival and therefore the entire village was extrmeely busy, and when we called the Penygawse we were advised they were technically fully booked, but that if we were happy to then we could book their 'loft space', which is as it says on the tin - it has been converted to a bedroom with a double bed and a compact but fully equipped en suite, but there is very little headroom, and the bed is of the Asian variety (i.e on the floor!). We had a look on the website where there are photos (unofficial room no 7) and where they clearly state they normally only let this room as a single because of the limited space, but we were happy enough with what we saw.

We booked two nights, and had intended to travel out straight after work on Friday. However, work got in the way and we couldn't set off when intended, so we called ahead to ask what the latest was we could arrive. They officially close at 10, but the owners stated they were often there till around 11 and that if we wanted we could arrive then. We decided that rather than keep them up and ride in the dark we would intead set off in the morning and arrive early. We called them back to let them know and they were lovely about it. They even said we didn't have to pay for the room that night, but we thought it only fair given the whole town was fully booked for the night!

We set off the next morning only to find the M4 closed, so instead of arriving around 09.30 as we had planned, we only just arrived in Llandovery at 11, which was just enoguh time to meet up with friends before the ride, so another call to the Penygawse to explain that we would in fact not arrive until the evening again, but again the news was greeted with warmth and friendliness! We had a great day in Wales and got back around 5.30 when the bistro was busy, but we were still greeted very helpfully and shown where to find the car park. I rode off and found the owner out the back making sure we found it ok! The car park is gravelled and on a bit of a hill so I surveyed it before riding the bike up, but found a flat bit and some stones to put under the stand on the bike, so pulled in with my other half pulling up next to me.

As mentioned in another review you do walk through the back of house to get to the B and B, and it is through the parlour and between the restaurant, and you then climb the stairs to get to the rooms, and yes, the stairs are slightly uneven. I really don't see that this is an issue. This is a listed building, in a listed town. For those that don't understand this it means that what you can and can't do to the building - both internally and externally - is advised t oyou by the listings board. And if you think this really affects the stairs - it even affects the colour of paint you're allowed to use! Listings exist in this country to try to preserve the past (something perhaps Americans are not that familiar with?) and in doing so they often hinder progress, but if you want a slice of history and authenticity, then you get it in a listed property!

The owners were lovely with us - as another reviewer we turned up wet and a bit musty after a day on the bikes, but we were shown to our room on the top floor and advised that in addition to the tea tray (with chocolates and biscuits no less!) guests can have complimentary hot drinks downstairs in the tea rooms too. The room was actually even better than it had been described to us. There is enough head room where you walk in to be able to stand, there are coat hooks and hangers for jackets tucked away in the corner, and whilst there isn't a full shower, there is a lovely bath with steaming hot water, and a forceful shower head to rinse off with. The toiletries included mouthwash and conditioner which was new to me, and the bathroom sink whilst small was more than adequate - I thought the room was amazing! We bathed and hung clothes out to dry in front of the wall mounted electric heater and headed off to meet our group for supper.

When we got back in the evening we were again welcomed back by the owner and went off to bed. I have to say that the bed on the floor was possibly one of the most comopfrtable nights sleep I have ever had in a B and B!! It was amazing! You do have to be mindful when you are getting out of it that there is very little headroom - particularly when there are two of you, but I never once banged my head, so it is possible.

Breakfast was served downstairs in the tea rooms, with fresh orange, proper coffee, and a lovely made to order cooked breakfast ,with a choice of cereals, fruits, yoghurts and pastries too should you desire. It was really nice and a great start to the day. We went for a walk to meet our friends down the road and learned a little more about the sheep festival so when we returned we had decided to pack up but hang around in the town for the afternoons festiivities. We settled up with the owner and indeed were refused our offer to pay for both nights. He said that the bistro was their main business and that room 7 is an unofficial room anyway, so he wouldn't let us pay! This was very nice given it was entirely our fault we didn't make it, and he would have been well within his rights - and we would have happily - paid in full.

We went off to the sheep festival, which by the way was most fun - if you are in Llandovery the last September weekend you sohuld take a look. General revelry, markets, stalls, duck herding, etc... jolly good fun :)

Because we were still in the town by lunchtime we decided to go back to the Penygawse for our lunch. We had homemade Welsh lamb soup (cawl) served with hot rolls and local cheddar) and home made quiche with home made chips. An excellent feed topped off with more of the lovely coffees on offer... then when we came to pay they didn't charge us for the coffees, and when we questioned this they said itw as because we were staying with them! we did say we had already chekd out and that we should settle up for the coffees, but again they insisted.... the money went in the tip jar instead!

All in all I'm very pleased we stayed here, and will definitely be staying again. Highly recommended!

  • Stayed September 2011, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank Pipx69
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
east yorkshire
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed July 17, 2011

I cannot recommend this B&B enough. It is one of the best I have stayed in - an been a business woman I have stayed in a few.
I have stopped at this B&B on numerous occassions during business trips and have found the place to be spotless.
With regards to the carpark, the owners cannot be help responsible for how other guests park their cars !!
Yes you have to pass a storeroom to get into the reception area, but wow - big deal !
The property is very quirky and retains all its old charm of a building that is grade II listed and has been fully restored to its previous glory.
To say you went elsewhere for food and it was less than pleasurable was your loss - the food at Penygawse is great, all freshly prepared on the premises and the coffee is NO 1 !
Look at what the other travellers have said on this site, this B&B is 'top notch' and should be visited by all that visit South Wales.
Recommend, recommend, recommend - will definately stay here again on my future business trip as well and also a weekend with the family !!!
Allan and Lynne you are doing a great job - keep it up !!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • Stayed July 2011, traveled on business
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank pskelly
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Kingston-upon-Hull, United Kingdom
1 review
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed July 16, 2011

YOU HAVE TO TRY THIS FOR YOURSELF!!!!!
Wow! From the moment we stepped through the door, we couldn't have asked for more. We were greeted with such a warm welcome, it felt like a homecoming. The owners were so friendly and affable and nothing was too much trouble.
The entire guest house and coffee shop were spotless and beautifully decorated with a very homely feel. Linens were fresh daily and the room we stayed in was enormous with the biggest, most comfortable bed my husband and I have ever slept in. There was also a bed for our daughter and a cot for our baby. The ensuite was beautiful, immaculate and huge!!! The enormous bath not only was designed for two to share but also fills so fast!! (very helpful when you have tired children)
The facilities within the room were second to none too. TV, DVD, Vanity table, bedside cabinets, tea and coffee facilities including biscuits and chocolates (all VERY VERY well stocked)!!
The whole place has a beautiful rustic charm and the owners have obviously tried to keep the building's natural charm, and they have succeeded!!!
The coffee shop attached, has the BEST coffee I have ever tasted and I would travel back to Penygawse just for another cup!! The food was amazing too. So much selection at every meal time and the bistro food in the evenings, is unrivalled!
The owners spent some time talking to us and ensuring all was to our satisfaction. Well, I wouldn't have changed a thing and I couldn't suggest any improvements at all!!! The entire place HAS to be tried by anyone wishing to stay in Wales. It is a credit to the owners and the staff who obviously pride themselves on excellent customer service.
To top it off, there was WiFi available and private parking!
What more can I say? The place is perfect and I guarantee we will be back!!
Huge thanks to the owners and staff for the best accomodation, service and atmosphere we've ever received!!! A+!!!!

Room Tip: Family room is amazing and would recommend to anyone, not just families!
See more room tips
  • Stayed May 2011, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank rainbow071
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Western Australia
Level Contributor
306 reviews
100 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 354 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed July 13, 2011

Upon arrival, the lovely girls attending the tearooms at the front of the property were all a bit bemused as they weren’t expecting any house guests. I produced the corresponding e-mails which verified and confirmed my arrival. After a short telephone call to the owners (who were on the way) everything was sorted out and I was directed to the guest’s car park – located behind the premises. Check-in was a slightly strange affair as there is no real dedicated reception, and all arrivals use the point of sale part of the tearooms (via the tearooms entrance.)

After relocating the car to the parking area, I re-entered the property via a back entrance and was met by the friendly and hospitable owners. They apologised for the oversight in the reservation and explained the dinner and breakfast arrangements and subsequent location. This was all done downstairs in the guest’s common sitting area (complete with settee, chairs, large flat screen TV and a small refrigerator).

I was escorted to my room by the owners, which was upstairs upon the first floor – the staircase was adequate enough to allow ascent with my entire luggage (large rucksack, daypack and a 17” laptop bag). The room was not very large but big enough to accommodate a double bed (quite hard and uncomfortable), two bedside tables (with lamps), medium sized cupboard (with four, small drawers), a small table (complete with a generous tea and coffee station including two packs of biscuits and a selection of Cadbury Rose chocolates) and a small desk (with a vanity mirror) – situated in front of large window. Manoeuvrability within the room was OK and I found no restrictions, and overall it was bright and clean. The room also had a private ensuite, and although a bit cramped and small, it was functional, clean and contained all the standard amenities and toiletries (even mouthwash!). The toilet was a bit squashed into position and the shower entrance a bit narrow, but both were acceptable. The shower was a wonderful change to what I’ve experienced recently (notwithstanding the slightly narrow entrance). Its internal area was roomy and clean, with a magnificent shower head unit (consisting of a hand held shower head, a fixed shower head with three settings, and a series of body jets) which had tremendous water pressure. However, in the morning the temperature fluctuated intermittently. There was also a vanity sink with mirror.

The first real fault and what became a hassle, is the Wi-Fi connection. I don’t usually care if the accommodation(s) I book have or don’t have Wi-Fi, but when they do promote it I look forward to using it – usually after dinner prior to retiring for the night. After endeavouring to connect (and the hassle of trying to resolve connectivity issues, troubleshooting etc...) I eventually asked the owner for assistance. He was quite eager and pleased to help, though the end result was fruitless and although it showed a connection, no web pages were accessible. He offered an explanation that it was probably my software or something to do with Windows 7. However, the majority of laptops/notebooks available on the market now, use this platform and if a property advertises Wi-Fi then it should be available to all, regardless. After wasting an hour and a half, getting frustrated and annoyed, there was still no useable connectivity. This really was an upsetting and unresolved issue, as I was really looking forward to a quiet night of e-mail correspondence and compiling/posting TripAdvisor reviews. (NB: I have no trouble in connecting to Wi-Fi in many different places eg. MacDonalds/KFC in Kuala Lumpur, airports in New Delhi/Kuala Lumpur/Bangkok, Little Chef’s across England, and the majority of 5 star + independent hotels across Asia/Australia and up until now, UK – and many other various places across the world.) Furthermore, this review is being posted at another B & B in Tywyn (Arthur Guesthouse) without any connectivity problems whatsoever.

The other fault (or inconsideration to others) was the owners and the night porter talking rather loudly in the guests shared sitting area at 12:45pm for about half an hour. This was conducted loud enough to awake me, which then became an effort to return to sleep. In the morning I complained to one of the owners (Allen) not mentioning that I knew it was him, his wife and the night porter, and I didn’t get a real response nor an acknowledgement (or apology) that it was them. He sort of avoided any further answers on the subject, but his guilty look gave him away. This was really disappointing and spoilt my stay. A trained?? Hospitality owner would’ve known better and conducted themselves more appropriately.

Dinner (only available until 5:30pm – last orders) was OK, with a few selections and is served in the downstairs tearooms. This is the same place where the full, cooked breakfast is served too (which is generous and very nice). [NB: Bear in mind that this is not a dedicated restaurant.]

Overall, it was a very good stay (with the exception of the Wi-Fi and inconsiderate, loud, sustained chatting problems) with a very welcoming feel, hospitable owners and good staff. I would probably stay here again and would recommend others to use this accommodation property when in Llandovery.

  • Stayed July 2011, traveled solo
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank DJEargasm
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Washington DC, District of Columbia
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
1 of 5 bubbles Reviewed June 21, 2011

Quite simply, my words of harsh wisdom - don't stay here. The place advertised a carpark, but no-one thought to get the cars parked carefully so everyone could be accommodated. We walked from the parking lot into the back of the building, into a smelly, messy parlor, past an open cold-store. Although I had phoned ahead, it was clear we weren't a priority. The place is a tearooms, a bistro, a restuarant that happens to double as a B&B.
The place reeked of old, stale chip fat. The rooms were up two and three flights of steeps, narrow and uneven stairs. The bedrooms were tiny, with huge beds, so that you had to inch your way along the wall to get around the bed. Filled with unnecessary, chunky furniture. When I arrived, I needed to use the toilet; didn't think that I would not find toilet paper to hand! But there wasn't any. The chip fat smell was so overwhelming that we decided to eat out; didn't fare much better along the road. On the third floor, every step i took creaked on the floor below where my parent was trying to sleep. Shabby rennovations, with door frames left unpainted etc. Rooms had black towels! Really surreal sinking your face into a BLACK face cloth.
Final kicker - got into bed that had no top sheet, only the duvet that last night's occupant slept under, and put my head on a pillow case that clearly also smelled of the previous night's occupant.
Bottom line: look elsewhere.

  • Stayed June 2011, traveled with family
    • 1 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 1 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 1 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 1 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
3 Thank gwytherstick
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Norwich, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
31 reviews
24 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 32 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed May 16, 2011

Penygawse Guest House was a real surprise for me, as a confirmed "guest house sceptic". Because I like my own space, I have always been wary of staying in what can often be no more than a normal house with rooms. This was spot on as you have 24 hour coded access to the property and not many guest houses come with their own tea rooms to boot! In the middle of town, it has a private car park which was ideal for parking the Triumph in. The rooms are well presented and the beds comfy together with plenty of hot water for the shower... On Friday evenings the tea room becomes a bistro so eleven of us decamped from the pub next door and had a very good dinner. Allan and Lynne are great hosts and very friendly - in short, I would go back next time I'm in Llandovery without any hesitation.

  • Stayed May 2011, traveled with friends
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Blacktiger1050
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Penygawse Guest House & Tea Rooms

Property: Penygawse Guest House & Tea Rooms
Address: 12 High Street, Llandovery SA20 0PU, Wales
Location: United Kingdom > Wales > Carmarthenshire > Llandovery
Amenities:
Restaurant
Hotel Style:
Ranked #7 of 13 B&Bs / Inns in Llandovery
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Hotel Class:4 star — Penygawse Guest House & Tea Rooms 4*
Number of rooms: 7
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Penygawse is a grade II listed Georgian townhouse in the ancient market town of Llandovery. All 7 bedrooms are recently refurbished and we have a mix of bath and shower en-suites to suit all tastes. Breakfast is substantial and served in our Tea Rooms along with 'barista' made lattes, cappuccinos and teas. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Penygawse Guest House & Tea Rooms Llandovery, Wales

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