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“Lovely outdoor pool”

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Feversham Arms Hotel & Verbena Spa
Ranked #4 of 4 Hotels in Helmsley
Certificate of Excellence
UK
Level Contributor
9 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 12 helpful votes
“Lovely outdoor pool”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed January 28, 2013

We've now stayed here twice and it was lovely both times but we enjoyed the more recent visit the most. It is very expensive (which is why I've rated very good rather than excellent) but the service, room, food and pool/spa are great. We certainly thought the food was better than a couple of years ago and really enjoyed our dinner and excellent service at it. My only negatives were that the pool (outdoor) was slightly chilly (but as the outdoor temp was 0 it must be difficult/expensive and environmentally unfriendly to heat it even as much as they do at this time of year) and my pancake portion at breakfast was a bit stingy. I had a massage this time which was great.

  • Stayed January 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Ella089
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    3.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (288)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
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English first
Preston, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
99 reviews
31 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 63 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed January 24, 2013

A Battle of the Roses

As a Lancastrian trespassing into the dark side of Yorkshire, you are immediately wary of your experience but having travelled through beautiful countryside and villages you have to be impressed with what Yorkshire has to offer. This was the introduction to the Feversham Arms Hotel which looked so appealing on the website. As we are frequent users of the Inn at Whitewell, the places seemed to offer something to compare, a country hotel with excellent food.
However, the Feversham Arms does try and provide something slightly different in that the food reaches for a more Michelin fine dining whilst the Inn never strays from the high quality country fare that constantly leaves you satisfied. This seems to be deliberate on the part of Feversham and they celebrate this in their literature but the danger with trying to be all things to all people is that you may miss out on achieving the actual level of excellence that we hope they are aiming for.
First appearances are good and all the staff are incredibly friendly and welcoming. On closer inspection there are some frayed carpets in public areas and our bedroom was tired, carpet stained, covers missing from screws in mirrors etc but this did not detract from a good stay. My wife enjoyed the Spa experience and again the staff were friendly whilst I enjoyed several pints of Black Sheep which seemed to be the only draft beer available but it was well kept; A request for some nibbles to accompany my beer was met with a free bowl of crisps, nice touch.
We ate in the Restaurant both evenings and sampled the Taster menu on the first evening and a la carte on the second. The meals were very good and the meat and the fish were cooked to perfection. However, if the Chef is striving to be a Michelin chef some of the unusual combinations need a little more refinement and the sweets were probably the most disappointing particularly the banana recipe which was soulless. The service was very friendly but inexperienced and probably a little too ‘relaxed’ for what purported to be a fine dining experience.
Breakfast was good but I would recommend losing the eggy bread from the Yorkshire breakfast. Clearly this is seen as a first class venue as evidenced by the loud pretentious shooting party staying at the hotel, why do people who clearly have money and education need to shout out such utter drivel... perhaps they are born in large baronial mansions and have to shout to be heard!!
The cost of the stay was expensive, the equivalent of £800 for two nights which from memory, admittedly three years ago, was not dissimilar to the Roux’s Waterside Inn with which this experience could not compare. If money is no object then Feversham is worth trying but I sense that it is in the middle of a makeover, would benefit from being family owned such as the Inn so that they never take their eye off the ball and finally I would question whether they can deliver fine dining to an excellent quality.
If not reduce your prices because compared to the Inn at Whitewell this is not good value for money.

Room Tip: Some of the rooms have apparently been refurbished. If you are paying this sort of money make sure y...
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  • Stayed January 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
3 Thank TonyC008
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Norwich, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
28 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 32 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed January 23, 2013

Service is the greatest feature of this hotel - every member of staff works hard to ensure your stay is as comfortable as possible.
Some features are a little tired, but in this economic climate I see this in many top hotels.
The spa provides a comprehensive array of treatments, all competently delivered.
The hotel s popular with shooting parties during the season,so book well in advance.
The hotel is not perfect,but I return year after year - need I say more.

Room Tip: Book well in advance
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  • Stayed January 2013, traveled with friends
    • Value
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    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Nicksreview
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Leeds, United Kingdom
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
2 of 5 bubbles Reviewed January 21, 2013

I've stayed in backpacking hostels, budget hotels/motels and luxury hotels around teh world and appreciate you get what you pay for, which is why I was so disappointed with the Feversham Arms (Room 23 to be exact). I wrote this review a month ago, but sent it by letter to the owner of Feversham Arms and gave him the courtesty of a month to reply, but I've heard nothing back. i.e. if the room is scheduled for a major upgrade in the very near future then it would be unfair to post this.

The room cost £360 per night (£260 after the Manager gave us a discount on checkout due to the problems) however I still feel that Room 23 (the only one I can comment on) is worth no more than £100 per night in it's current state of repair.

My wife has wanted to stay at the Feversham ever since I’ve known her but we could never justify spending that much money on a hotel almost on our doorstep (we live in Leeds), however for our 1st wedding anniversary I splashed out for something special not only because it was our 1st anniversary but also because my wife is 7 months pregnant and this would be the last time we would be just a couple rather than a family going away. Below is a list of the issues we found in no particular order and I hope I’m being fair with each.
• The sofa was absolutely knackered, the seating has compressed with age in the middle and is rock hard at the sides so 1 person can only sit on it in the worn depression but it’s not comfortable. We made It bearable for 2 using all the cushions from the armchair, breakfast table chairs and the bed.
• I paid for a premium room to ensure we got one with the log burning stove (always romantic) given the time of year and expected cold temperatures (about minus 2 degrees in the end). However the room was so ridiculously hot that the stove wasn’t an option. We had to put the air-con on to counteract the heating. Turning the wall thermostat’s both down to 15degrees didn’t seem to have any effect.
• The heated bathroom floor is a nice feeling on the feet but it’s on so hot that even with the air con on the heat from the bathroom heated up the bedroom to the point it was too hot quickly. We had to ask reception to turn off the underfloor heating the next day. (it’s controlled by a hidden valve apparently)
• The room was so hot that on the second night my wife slept without any covers which when it’s -2 outside is ridiculous.
• No fridge – surely a basic for a good hotel yet alone a luxury one, we brought some cans of coke and other non-alcoholic drinks with us, but nowhere to keep them cool, (in the very warm room) what do guests do in the summer?
• The mattress needs re-stuffing or replacing, it’s higher in the middle with age, hence I couldn’t even get close enough to put an arm round my wife, so we slept either side of a huge bed, not very romantic.
• The website still advertises that Poolside/Deluxe suites include Room service Breakfast at no extra charge, but we were charged £10 per day – this was removed from our bill when I pointed this out.
• The DVD player is a Tesco Value DVD player which certainly isn’t the high end entertainment system expected from the website or what one would expect at a premium hotel.
• The Freeview is another cheap plug in adapter with a remote control so poor that we eventually gave up and watched BBC2 for 3 hours straight. It wasn’t the batteries because I tried all the batteries in all 5 remotes from the room. It was the operating distance and angle of a cheap product it worked within 3 feet when pointed at exactly the right angle at the sensor.
• A 20” Bang & Olufsen Tube TV may have been luxury when installed 15 years ago, but these seriously need upgrading to maintain premium prices.
• The shower was almost cold on the first day and was mildly warm on the second (but the towel from towel rail was still hotter) when they ‘fixed’ it on Monday morning having complained. We were told on checkout that was as hot as it could go, but the sink tap ran at scolding temperature so you can certainly get hot water to the room, it must be a plumbing fault.
• The plug in the bath is removed with a stick on rubber hook because the proper plug mechanism is broken (a review of Room 23 in June also mentions this). The manager explained this was because the side panel on the bath wasn’t removable to fix it, but it has 2 screws and a crack along the top edge, so it clearly has been removed at some point. Even if it’s a £500 job for a plumber to fix the plug and tiler to re-tile the side, then at £360 a night surely this needs doing and is quickly recovered.
• The soap holder in the bathroom is almost falling off so it was difficult to balance products on it.
• The shower ceiling light has gaps in the plaster around it and water ingress into the bulb, clearly not safe.
• No ventilation in the bathroom so condensation/steam/smells can’t be released.
• The toilet brush holder is only cleaned on the side facing outwards, I picked it up to use and the backside was absolutely disgusting.
• Our bed wasn’t made up in the 2 hours we were out the room Monday morning (11 til 1ish), despite informing reception as we left that room was now available to service.
• The website advertises complimentary wifi, but it’s so weak that the signal is difficult to maintain – when you are connected the speed is great, but connecting to the router is clearly an issue and the manager was aware of this.
• For a luxury hotel again I would expect a master light switch for the bedroom area beside the bed, rather than faff about with multiple wall and lamp switches having to work out the light switch combination to leave just the bedside lamp on.
• We booked the Muddy Boots package because it was the cheapest for a 2 nights stay and it came with a use it or lose it £45 per person per night contribution towards dinner (which starts at £55 excluding drinks), but we didn’t like the menu so that was £180 wasted. Why not just make the room £90 per night cheaper? A lower headline rate might attract more custom. The Package also came with a packed lunch, but the options were stingy to say the least. A micro bottle of water for drink (150ml from memory), a cheese and pickle sandwich and a piece of fruit. We went to a local sandwich shop on the square and got a range of tasty sandwiches to choose from, cakes, crisps, drinks, fruit etc all for less than £10 for the 2 of us.
Finally on Friday before we arrived I booked a Mother to Be Spa treatment as a surprise for my wife, on the Monday. I wasn’t advised that my wife needed to pack a swimming costume (perhaps a little naïve on my part here, but I did specifically ask if there was anything else I needed to know and did advise it was a surprise) and hence when I presented it as a present on Monday morning she couldn’t use it and I phoned reception to cancel and expected to forfeit the £25 reservation fee (as per the room guide) but was informed that I would forfeit the full charge (£76).
If it was a £100 or less hotel I would just accept most of the above points, but I expect much more for £360 a night.
The manager James Wiseman did what he could to assist and I couldn’t fault his seeming desire to help, but I got the feeling he was aware of many of the problems but didn’t have the budget/authority to make the improvements. He reduced our bill by £100 for each night, but that’s still £260 a night & £76 for the spa for a less than special unromantic stay that was memorable for all the wrong reasons.

We won't be back.

Room Tip: If you like a comfy sofa avoid Rm23, but if you like a very warm room all night then Room 23 is the...
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  • Stayed December 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
4 Thank LeedsCouple76
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Derby, United Kingdom
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed January 19, 2013

we read the trip advisor reviews after booking and thought ' oh great its a shed with bad service and we're about to be abused at our expense'. and then we arrived and had the best time, log fires in your room, great restaurant, staff with a personality, shabby chic, blah blah blah. And we sat and read some of the reviews and laughed and thought - these numpties must have been to another hotel....ignore them folks and have a great stay over at Yorkshires best kept secret. We'll be back, chilling in the spa and quaffing a nice bin 54. And for those who have now written us off as easily pleased Premier Inn fodder - we're ex hoteliers, have just travelled extensively from Australia - the west indies, Hawaii etc, stayed in some £600 a night places ' then Grove' etc. And so we say thanks to Feversham arms for proving the critics wrong.........salut.....

Room Tip: ask for a suite with log burner, get the paper, a bottle of red and kick back...
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  • Stayed January 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank stevechapman123
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Leeds, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
14 reviews
11 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed January 19, 2013

This was an impulse night away . The hotel was recomended by two differant friends so we drove up to Helmsley , a very scenic trip from Leeds. The building doesnt shout out to you , it's rather unasuming ,on a corner next to the church . Once inside it's a differant story , every thing about it is first class from the helpful staff to the unique decor . We had a classic bedroom , lots of space , large bed , t.v. d.v.d player , small but okay bathroom . Dinner was enjoyable , small but interesting menu , and very tasty it was . I had cod and my wife the veal .

Room Tip: we stayed in room # 3 up stairs , we would want it again .
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  • Stayed January 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Paul M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London, United Kingdom
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed January 14, 2013

Initially we were put off by poor reviews but, after being assured that changes had been made and all was well, we booked a suite for New Year. Starting with the good points, the hotel is spacious and, unusual for country hotels, has plenty of lounge seating space. The food was generally very good, but not exceptional. The portions were sufficient for us, but there were many complaints from other guests that the portions were tiny.The bedroom/lounge was spacious and comfortable, but more of this later. So, what didn't we like? The hotel was tired, but more than that, was quite dirty in places. Carpets in poor condition, restaurant not vacumed properly between meals and, particularly so on New Year's Day, (when breakfast was served later then normal). The dado rail in the restaurant had obviously not been dusted for days. The service was enthusiastic but lacking in detail, with drinks either not arriving at all or only after being reminded. The bathroom/shower area was very tired with the sealing peeling away. Reception staff showed no real warmth or welcome. Overall, rather disappointing and does not justify its high prices. Must try harder!

  • Stayed December 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank 931John
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Feversham Arms Hotel & Verbena Spa

Property: Feversham Arms Hotel & Verbena Spa
Address: 1 High Street, Helmsley YO62 5AG, England
Location: United Kingdom > England > Yorkshire > North Yorkshire > Helmsley
Amenities:
Business Center with Internet Access Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #4 of 4 Hotels in Helmsley
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:4 star — Feversham Arms Hotel & Verbena Spa 4*
Number of rooms: 33
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Nestled in a picturesque market town by the beautiful North Yorkshire Moors, this elegant Hotel boasts superb dining, full spa facilities, a heated outdoor swimming pool and free Wi-Fi. Surrounded by glorious countryside, this wonderfully secluded retreat is a haven of laid-back luxury and indulgent relaxation. Famous for its welcoming hospitality, it blends the traditional comforts of its Victorian heritage with an irresistible boutique design. Beautiful, peaceful and thoroughly unique, one visit is simply not enough. Guests can choose from a range of 33 individually designed en-suite bedrooms and suites each with their own unique decor, style and character. Cosy and intimately homely, they all feature Egyptian cotton sheets, soft exquisite duck down duvets (or cotton blankets), free Wi-Fi access, flat-screen TV, DVD player, luxurious Anne Semonin toiletries, hairdryer and tea and coffee making facilities. There are accommodation options to suit all purposes, including Small and Classic Doubles, Junior and Deluxe Suites and, for the ultimate indulgence, Luxury Poolside and Spa Suites. Superb food plays a big part in life at Feversham. Here diners can enjoy classically inspired dishes from a menu that draws heavily from fresh local ingredients such as rich Yorkshire game and tasty North Sea fish. It's also home to one of the most talked about cheese trolleys in Yorkshire, traditional afternoon tea in their cosy fireside lounge and an impeccably well-stocked cellar. Throughout the warmer months, dishes can be served poolside on the terrace and gardens. The hotel's award-winning Verbena Spa offers an idyllic haven from the pressures of everyday life. Here guests can kick back, relax and immerse themselves in luxurious indulgence. They offer a range of treatments from manicures, facials and massages through to full spa day experiences. Revitalise and enjoy their famous heat experience with saunarium, aromatherapy room, salt vapour room, monsoon shower, ice cave, foot spa, outdoor heated pool and hot tub. The Hotel is situated in the North Yorkshire town of Helmsley just off the A170. Complimentary on-site parking is available. The city of York is just a 40 minute drive away and it offers excellent transport links to the rest of the country. There is also a local train station at Thirsk, a 25 minute taxi ride away. For those flying in, Leeds Bradford International Airport is about an hour's drive from the Hotel. Beautifully located in the depths of the stunning North Yorkshire Moors the Hotel is the perfect place from which to explore this remarkable area. Yorkshire is renowned as a place of distinct yet diverse appeal, from the majestic Castle Howard to the Gothic seaside town of Whitby, the ruins of Rievaux and Bylands Abbey to luxury designer shopping, Michelin starred restaurants to quaint marketplace tea rooms, there is truly something for everyone. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Feversham Arms Hotel & Verbena Helmsley
Feversham Arms Hotel And Verbena Spa
Feversham Arms Helmsley
Feversham Arms Hotel & Verbena Spa Helmsley, England

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