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“Delapidated”

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Thornewood Castle Inn and Gardens
Ranked #1 of 11 Tacoma B&B and Inns
Certificate of Excellence
Portland, Oregon
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
“Delapidated”
Reviewed July 5, 2012

This must have been a beautiful estate (hardly a "castle") when it was built 105 years ago, but it's tatterworn and delapidated now. Carpeting is threadbare, brick is broken, doors are split, loose and showing multiple repair efforts, paint is peeling, air-conditioning doesn't work. All that would be tolerable if there were warm and friendly redeeming features, but there aren't. The home is difficult to acess due to nearby crime problems. It's in a gated community and all doors to the outside must remain locked. Access is via intercom at exterior gate and then another intercom at the front door. Owners are MIA, so a nice young woman showed us the building and policies. Only access to outside is the front door due to security concerns. It's not espcially nice, not especially friendly and definitely NOT upscale. That's the biggest dissappointment. This is the most expensive B&B we stayed in over the last five days, and it's the second worst. It's not even in the same league as the similarly priced competition. Not even close. We felt caged in a collapsing estate right out of a Stephen King novel (literally -- the house, err, castle, was used in a King movie!) Ugh. The AC unit is a portable that can only be installed in the bathroom. It's been running since 3:00 this afternoon and it's 10:00PM now. Our room is down to about 75 degrees, finally. Oddly, it wasn't even very hot today -- maybe 80? Not sure why the house is so hot. We'd open the windows, but there are no screens on most of them, so the skeeters would invade (house in on the lake). The location is pretty and peaceful, and we'd stay here again if 1) It wasn't a hot day, 2) We had to be near Lakewood, 3) the rate was cut in half, and 4) there were no other options. My guess is the place is almost empty (one other couple) because there are no repeat customers.... we talked to the other couple, locals, and they felt the same way.

Room Tip: Drive a couple hours north to "B&B row" between Sequim and Port Angeles. The George Wa...
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  • Stayed July 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
9 Thank Alex G
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Thornewood-Castle, Manager at Thornewood Castle Inn and Gardens, responded to this review, July 28, 2012
I am one of the managers here at Thornewood Castle. I want to personally say I'm sorry to hear about your issue with Thornewood Castle. Our first priority is to ensure our client’s safety and to provide a memorable stay for every guest. To protect our guests, we always take every extra precaution to make sure we have tightened security around Thornewood Castle. Normally, we find that our guests appreciate security. As Thornewood is also our personal home, we take an enormous amount of pride in keeping it in excellent condition. Since the style of the Thornewood Castle is that of a historic English Tudor Gothic Manor, the materials are not meant to look new. The brick goes back several courses and is not just a mere layer of exterior brick. Although some areas appear aged cosmetically, that look matches the style and period of a century-old English Tudor Gothic Manor , which is part of the castle's charm for visitors. As a testament to these statements, we have brought in experts who have worked on these types of houses all over the world and these experts have said that this house is in good condition. Any cosmetic wear clearly abides by the style of the manor. Due to the unique nature of Thornewood, in which floors and ceilings are composed of 10-inch thick concrete and steel, central air conditioning cannot be installed without dramatically changing the character of this historic place. If, at any time, there are issues with our appliances and our guests report the issues to us, we will immediately take steps to correct or replace them. We take great pride in our home and in the service we provide to our guests. If you would like to further discuss Thornewood Castle, please contact us at 253-584-4393.
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193 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Sleep Quality
  • Location
  • Rooms
  • Service
  • Value
  • Cleanliness
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (43)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • German first
  • Any
English first
California
Level Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed June 26, 2012

June 12 2012: Our family reserved three castle rooms and the two bedroom apartment. With a early 70 year range in years, each of us took away a unique memory from Thornewood. All were impressed with the cleanliness, the artifacts, the ambience of a calm and peaceful retreat. We asked for a few items and they were immediately brought to us - no detail forgotten. We were treated very well. We all loved listening to the owners share times past and their gracious mannerisms.
It was great playing chess in the garden, ping pong and pool in the game room, and celebrating the family overlooking a beautiful lake. Thank you so much from all of us!!!

Room Tip: Grandview and Presidential - our favorites!!
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  • Stayed June 2012, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
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    • Service
Helpful?
Thank xg4man
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Utica, Illinois
Level Contributor
17 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
Reviewed June 13, 2012

This place has endless potential. I had my wedding here and fell in love with the garden and house immediately. I booked it but was disappointed when a few months later, I found out about some "additions". The owner had added VERY tacky sculptures all over the garden and ruined the best part, the tiny reflection pond with an ugly Vegas style fountain that is far too big for the tiny space. It totally detracts from the old English style of the manor. She also added a huge ugly ramp over the old stairs for her lawn mower. Good grief. I wish she would stop over cluttering this otherwise, gorgeous space with dolls, oversized chairs, stuffed animals, Vegas statues etc. and give the home back its intended dignity. So much potential, then again it is her house and she can do what she wants and I can keep dreaming about fixing up my own manor. :) Regardless I am glad I had my wedding there and will just crop out the tacky stuff from my photos. All in all, it still holds up as a gorgeous setting even if it is getting way too cluttered.

  • Stayed May 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
4 Thank Traveltrotter1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Mesa, Arizona
1 review
Reviewed January 5, 2012

Thank you for your wonderful hospitality and delicious breakfast. This has been a beautiful start to a lifelong honeymoon. We watched a gorgeous sunset and ate breakfast on the patio overlooking the secret garden. Dreamy! We’ll be back next year for our 1-year anniversary. Thank you again.

  • Stayed November 2011, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank glassonion003
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Bend, Oregon
1 review
Reviewed January 5, 2012

Two days ago, we entered Thornewood and it’s enchantment. As I slept, I had magnificent dreams of years gone past. Thornewood has a great history and unending warmth, romance and charm. These two days were a respite for both Doug and I. As we leave today we go back to the real world, now we have a place to hide and enjoy romantic times together.

  • Stayed January 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Kelly P
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
vail, Arizona
Level Contributor
36 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 24 helpful votes
Reviewed January 3, 2012

The restrictions put on my daughters wedding were terrible. They would not let anyone into the Castle until 4PM. The wedding was at 4:30 and it was pouring down rain. They met me at the door and wanted an $800. Damage deposit and informed us that unless everyone was out of the gates by 10:00Pm they would charge me $800. I had made all of other payments on time.
I stayed in the Lake House and was informed if I lost the remote to the gate they would charge me $500. The castle is beautiful but the whole evening I was concerned about getting everyone out on time. Not a very bride friendly place. The bridesmaids all commented that they would never have their wedding there. They also charged $500 to have a rehearsal there on top of the fees for the Castle. They put a real damper on the evening.

  • Stayed December 2011, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
11 Thank hanegan
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Thornewood-Castle, Manager at Thornewood Castle Inn and Gardens, responded to this review, July 28, 2012
Please allow me to clarify a few points mentioned in this review. We are a rental only facility and we were not the wedding planners or caterers for this event. Like most facilities we are rented for a specific period of time. The time period is chosen by the customer. On this particular occasion, the client rented the facility from 4:00 PM until 10:00 PM. Apparently they planned the wedding ceremony to start at 4:30 PM, which only allows them 30 minutes to set up the entire ceremony, reception, catering, and do all of this while guests would be arriving. We require a security deposit, which is standard practice for many facility rentals. For our customers’ convenience and satisfaction, we have not required the deposit to be paid in advance. Instead, as a courtesy, we have accepted payment on the day of the event and in almost all cases it is returned it at the end of the event. Normally our customers are appreciative of this. The security deposit is clearly stated in our contract and applies to all of our customers. This customer was well informed about our product and policies both verbally and in writing. We delivered our facility when promised and it was beautiful according to this bride and her mother. We understand a wedding is one of the most important days in an individual's life and we will always do everything possible to make sure the event runs as smoothly as possible. Our customer’s satisfaction is our greatest reward.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Kent, WA
Level Contributor
11 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 14 helpful votes
Reviewed September 12, 2011

Let me start by saying that the castle and gardens were breathtakingly beautiful and I challenge you to find a more incredible setting. We stayed for 2 nights and there were weddings on the grounds both days. As B&B guests we were given access to the castle interior, the gardens and the lakefront. There was only one other room rented on our first night and the very friendly woman on staff took us on a personal tour of all of the empty rooms, unlocking each one and telling us stories of her time spent working at Thornewood. The owners, Deanna and Wayne Robinson, could not have been more acoommodating. We were treated like guests in their home and they tirelessly answered all of our questions, and as we were there celebrating our birthdays they even gave us a lovely gift! As for the breakfast, one of us is vegan and the other vegetarian - they were very careful to provide delicious and appropriate meals for both of us, served with a garnish of tiny flowers. Lovely. I could go on and on but I won't - suffice to say that the room was clean and beautifully furnished and ours was equipped with a little kitchenette that was perfect for our stay. The only downside I saw was that the carpet on the main staircase is worn and could use some TLC, but that did not in any way diminish our enjoyment of this wonderful weekend.

Room Tip: Be sure to view carefully online - not all rooms have kitchenettes and some have the bath in the hal...
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  • Stayed September 2011, traveled with friends
    • Value
    • Sleep Quality
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank woodacy
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Thornewood Castle Inn and Gardens

Property: Thornewood Castle Inn and Gardens
Address: 8601 N. Thorne Lane S.W., Tacoma, WA 98498
Location: United States > Washington > Tacoma
Amenities:
Free Parking Kitchenette Suites
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 11 B&Bs / Inns in Tacoma
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:3 star — Thornewood Castle Inn and Gardens 3*
Number of rooms: 12
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Also Known As:
Thornewood Castle Inn And Gardens Hotel Tacoma

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