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“Service poor, food average - real letdown”

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The Spinnaker Hotel
Ranked #1 of 1 Hotels in Gourock
Reviewed September 25, 2012

We ate here last Saturday evening as a group of 5 who had pre-booked a table in the restaurant. We have been here a number of times before (the place is a favourite of my 92 year old grandfather) but this time was worse than all the others. Our table was reserved for 6.30pm and we arrived at 6.15 and were seated straight away. Menus and drinks were slow to arrive. We ordered and waited for our starters and they came along no too long later. I had the baked brie starter and got 3 small pieces which were tasty but I felt there could have been more. The mains took forever to arrive - 7.45 before the first ones came out. We were told that the kitchen had "run out of pasta" so my vegetarian grandfather then had to make another choice of what to have (very limited options). Communication between the kitchen and serving staff was obviously missing something there as we heard a couple on the next table being told the same thing 40 minutes later (why not tell people when you give them a menu that certain dishes are off?).
My husband had the Spinny Burger which was the sorriest interpretation of a burger we have seen in a very long time. It was literally a small burger with a single (small) mushroom on top of it! No lettuce / tomato / dressing / mayo - it was awful. The gammon steak I had was very, very fatty and not at all as it has been in the past. You used to get one nice, fat, tasty gammon steak and what I got was 2 thin, fatty, salty gammon steaks. The rest of our party were as underwhelmed with their dishes. The chips arrive out with pepper all over them which was no good for some of our party who don`t like pepper and would have preferred to have added this if they wanted it rather than have it put on already. We didn`t order a sweet as it had taken an hour`s wait to get the main, we ddidn`t want to stay there all night waiting for pudding (assuming it hadn`t "run out" as many other things had!). Trying to get another round of drinks was impossible - eventually managed to get one person another lager but that was it.
This was a mini get together as some of us had come up from Birmingham and my poor grandfather kept apologising for how bad the place was and it wasn`t his fault. He takes all his various family and friends to The Spinnaker and we have had decent meals here in the past - although the service has always been an issue. Definitely avoid a Friday / Saturday night unless you don`t mind a long wait for - and between - courses and don`t mind making do with one drink all evening.
There were a number of items "unavailable" from the menu, service was exceptionally slow and overall it was a poor experience. We won`t be returning or recommending this place to anyone. PS - the website makes the place look fantastic - much better than it actually is, but as my husband quoted "the food pictured on the website is nothing like the food that is served" Very much a case of "over promise, under deliver" unfortunately.

  • Stayed: September 2012, traveled with family
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3  Thank PDhappytravellers
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
SpinnyGourock, Owner at The Spinnaker Hotel, responded to this reviewResponded October 2, 2012

I'm sorry to read you did not enjoy your evening in the Spinnaker.
Ultimately I take responsibility as the owner of the business to ensure everyone has a pleasant and enjoyable time and do not like to hear anything different.
The evening you were in was extremely busy and admittedly we (myself, bar staff and kitchen staff) struggled to cope. For that I apologise.
You're critical of the food and that's the beauty of TripAdvisor. It allows you to say it as you see it. I respect constructive criticism and believe it can be beneficial. I will take on board what I can from your review. I feel I must also say that while the service on the particular night in questions was not anywhere near good enough I feel that the comments you make about the food paint a very black picture of my establishment and I have to respectfully say I don't agree with them. The Spinnaker Hotel has a good name for food, we use reputable suppliers who supply quality products. We don't use cheap burgers or any other product come to mention it.
You had a bad experience. Trying to get another round of drinks was not impossible. Table service was poor that evening but we also operate a bar were customers can order drinks from at anytime. You say you've been here before and your grandparents certainly have many times. In general they seem to enjoy it which I hope is this case and why they come back. I hope they will continue to do so even though you have chosen not to.
My website is quite new and overall I'm very pleased with it. Some pictures have still to be added, some changed and some removed. This is no intention to mislead.
Again thank you for taking the time to review the Spinnaker Hotel.

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114 - 120 of 142 reviews

Reviewed May 30, 2012

I stayed here one night in late May 2012, while Scotland was getting its summer.

The staff was very helpful in the evening and again in the morning at breakfast.

The bar was great, but even better thankfully were the tables outside to enjoy the amazing view.

The room was fine, not luxury, but not in disrepair, unclean, or unfunctional in any way. A satisfactory restful evening was had. By far the outstanding feature is the million pound view on a beautiful evening nd morning. Jaw dropping!

The only negatives might be parking and highway noise, but I cannot entirely fault the hotel for these.

I would definitely return!

  • Stayed: May 2012, traveled solo
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3  Thank Joseph H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
SpinnyGourock, Owner at The Spinnaker Hotel, responded to this reviewResponded June 4, 2012

Hi. Thank you for taking the time to review the Spinnaker and be so complimentary. If there's anything at all you would like to see change or improve please feel free to let me know.

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Reviewed May 21, 2012

I am not normally one to write reviews on these websites, however after reading the negative comments from the last guest I feel I have to respond. I have stayed at the Spinnaker hotel on many occasions as I have family who live in the area. It is important to note that I travel a great deal on business and I have stayed in many hotels in my time. To begin, I have never had a problem with the hotel's facillities. I find the rooms clean, well kept and no you can't beat the view in the morning, it is outstanding. Also, the website clearly states that it is a small, family run hotel and that is exactly what you get. The staff are like one big friendly family. The owner is welcoming, helpful and always aims to please. The manager/chef is smiley, welcoming and an unbelievable cook. And yes she does work her socks off. In fact, I have noticed that every staff member are hard working and always smiling. The restaurant is warm and has a lovely atmoshere and very popular with the locals.I hope this review is a little more helpful than the former :)

  • Stayed: February 2012, traveled with family
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Thank Gilsa
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
SpinnyGourock, Owner at The Spinnaker Hotel, responded to this reviewResponded September 20, 2014

Thank you. :)

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Reviewed May 18, 2012

I have stayed at the Spinnaker twice now and you couldn't find a nicer hotel anywhere in the surounding area. The staff are wonderful, nothing is too much trouble. The location is gorgeous, especially on a nice sunny day. The rooms are comfortable and the breakfast is everything you could wish for.

  • Stayed: April 2012, traveled solo
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Thank BeverlyT331
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
SpinnyGourock, Owner at The Spinnaker Hotel, responded to this reviewResponded May 21, 2012

Hi. Thank you for taking the time to review the Spinnaker. I appreciate the positive comments. If there is anything you would like to see an improvement on do not hesitate to let me know.

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Reviewed April 30, 2012

The Spinnaker’s website is very attractive. Problem is that it is misleading. This is not an hotel in any normal sense of the word. There is no reception desk and no hotel car park. Guests arriving in the evening have to battle through the crowded bar to find the staff. It is initially very disconcerting after a long journey. On the other hand, if you arrive expecting a pub (rather than an hotel) with excellent beer, reasonable food, friendly staff and a few rooms up the stairs you won’t be so disappointed.
But don’t get too cheered up. Our room looked like a bat’s cave until the economy light bulbs burst into full glow about half an hour later. It was also an ice box even though we had booked several days earlier. The en suite bathroom is a statement in itself in all that is wrong with this hotel. There was mould in the shower and I don’t mean a few specks, I mean a lot of ugly off-putting mould. The hot tap was loose meaning that you had to hold it with both hands to turn on and off. The ventilation extractor had a red light to say that it was on. Alas, nothing happened in the way of extraction due to the centuries of dust clogging it. It looked like the underside of a bird’s nest.
Yes, the view from Room 5 is outstanding but clients need more than a view.
The beds: try to imagine a mattress like a thin layer of marshmallow on top of spaced railway sleepers and you begin to get the picture. Enjoy the excellent beer, indeed over-indulge, if you hope to get any sleep at all. Actually the beer is also a necessary antidote to the live music, which played until very late. By the way we enjoyed the entertainment in the bar but not in our bedroom.
Now breakfast; this was a script from Basil’s (in)famous hotel. First you have to dig the staff out to attend. But I felt guilty when I later realised that it was the same girl taking orders, serving tables, covering check-out and for all I know, cooking too. The Scottish fry-up is very good but the ‘Continental’ is hopeless - toasted 'industrial' white bread and tea/coffee. This, in the home of the famous floury Scottish breakfast roll - shame on you!
In short the Spinnaker needs to raise its game to justify the £80 b & b rate.

  • Stayed: April 2012, traveled as a couple
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3  Thank Robert L
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
SpinnyGourock, Owner at The Spinnaker Hotel, responded to this reviewResponded May 21, 2012

Thank you for taking the time to review the Spinnaker.
I'm disappointed your visit clearly wasn't what you'd hoped for.
The Spinnaker is a small family run hotel - 9 bedrooms, eating areas, bar area and small area outside the building for eating / drinking. It's not a 100 bedroom hotel with swimming pool and multiple leisure and business facilities. I don't try to pretend it is.
I have read your various comments and will happily take contructive criticism e.g. I'm getting another light installed in the bedroom you where in. In some defence there are also two bedside lights that offer additional lighting if the main ceiling light wasn't bright enough. I appologise if the room was cold - my gas bills reflect that my heating bills are large and I don't scrimp and scrape on the heating.I have discussed the cleanliness of the room with the staff responsible. There certainly wasn't centuries of dust clogging the extractor up - the hotel isn't that old.
On your other points about comfort and breakfast (the 'industrial' toast) and cleanliness all I can say is the vast majority of people who stay at my hotel are complimentary about all of them. As a relatively small business in the hotel / leisure industry my staff and myself try to make customers enjoy their visit as much as possible. If you would have preferred 'a famous floury Scottish breakfast roll' all you had to do was ask. The 'Basil' remark I don't know whether to be offended or find it funny. I think I'll go for the latter although the staff member on duty that morning doesn't think she looks anything like Mr Fawlty plus she work her socks off from the minute she starts work till when she finishes.
As you said the Spinnaker provides excellent beer (including traditional real ales), reasonable food (I would go as far as too say very good food, but I would) and friendly staff. I wish my business was a busy every night as it appeared to have been when you arrived. This is unfortunately not the case but as you point out 'it needs to raise its game'. I agree and I don't think that will ever stop being the case in the nature of the business I'm in.
My reply here is possibly verging on being 'retaliatory' which is not my intention. People have different opinions which there entitled too have- its a relatively free world. I'm sorry your visit was so unenjoyable it merited such a negative review.

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Reviewed April 23, 2012

Excellent hotel situated in the most picturesque part of the west coast. Staff were very attentive, rooms were modern, very clean and very comfortable. Good breakfast, fine food and excellent choice of drinks on tap. Cannot fault anything about this visit.
Would highly recommend the Spinnaker for a stay - whether one night or one week you will enjoy the experience .

Room Tip: If you get a room facing the Clyde- the views are one of the best in the world.
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  • Stayed: April 2012, traveled solo
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Thank Max O
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed February 20, 2012

This is one of Gourock's gem's. The views are stunning, the food although a bit pricey is of good quality for 'pub grub'. Great in the summer for the ideal pit stop when on a scenic trek. Stuart puts his heart and soul into the place and this comes through. (where else can you get a slice roll at 11:30pm when the beer is taking effect)
Keep up the good work guys!

  • Stayed: February 2012
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1  Thank Bigjimstevenson
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about The Spinnaker Hotel

Address: 121 Albert Road, Gourock PA19 1BU, Scotland
Location: United Kingdom > Scotland > Inverclyde > Gourock
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free Breakfast Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 1 Hotels in Gourock
Price Range: $73 - $79 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Number of rooms: 8
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Also Known As:
Spinnaker Hotel Gourock
The Spinnaker Hotel Gourock, Scotland

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