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“Pricey, but a night of splendid indulgence”

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The Black Swan Hotel
Ranked #2 of 5 Hotels in Helmsley
Certificate of Excellence
West Yorkshire
Level 5 Contributor
40 reviews
32 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 147 helpful votes
“Pricey, but a night of splendid indulgence”
Reviewed June 9, 2013

We stayed in the Black Swan for one night (Weds) in May on their Springboard into Yorkshire package. We fell lucky getting a parking space in the car park to the front of the hotel which seemed to be used by the general public popping in and out of Helmsley as much as by hotel guests.
We were allocated room 19 which was just off the top of the stairs up from reception, and although this meant the occasional creaking of floorboards (which reflect the olde world character of the hotel) as people passed by, there was no interupted sleep as a result.
The room quality was excellent with a super comfy bed, crisp bed linen, a sofa and cushions aplenty, with a fine view across the well kept gardens at the rear. There was no bath but a spacious and powerful shower
The package included a welcome glass of Prosecco which was served in the well furnished bar, although the price was £7.50 per glass for a second serving which reflects the pricey nature of a stay at the Black Swan. You pay for what you get, I can hear people shouting and I probably wouldn't argue.
A 6 course taster menu that evening provided a feast of flavours for both myself and the wife whose vegetarian requirements had been noted and acted upon. The young lady who served us was aimiable, knowledgable and friendly throughout. The only hiccup was a sorbet so deeply frozen that we gave up trying after about 5 minutes. Almost perfect otherwise.
The restaurant was a little quiet albeit it was a Wednesday night and a genuine comment (from no spring chicken) would be that the clientele were of an older age, hence the atmosphere did on occasion feel a little subdued, but nothing that spoiled the experience.
A good nights sleep followed before moving onto the North Yorkshire Moors into which Helmsley provides a gateway. Spend a bit of time in the town as it has a splendid mix of specialist shops around the square and you can wander close enough to the castle and into grounds of Duncombe Park without paying the entrance fees if you haven't too much time.
So an enjoyable and satisfactory experience in the Black Swan, albeit being frank I'd expect as much for the price paid. An occasional nights indulgence never harmed anyone.

  • Stayed May 2013, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
Thank denbydaler
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (323)
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English first
York, United Kingdom
Level 5 Contributor
55 reviews
18 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 18 helpful votes
Reviewed June 7, 2013

We booked a six course fish dinner, one of the hotels special dining events and decided to stay overnight so as to enjoy the wines that accompanied each course! We were truly delighted with the whole experience. We arrived at lunch time so enjoyed some delicious sandwiches in the bar, served by Christian who was so engaging and helpful. Our room was overlooking the beautiful gardens and church and was just perfect with a lovely big comfortable bed and crisp fresh linen. When we came back to change for dinner the room had had the curtains pulled and tidied again which was really nice. Dinner was superb. We were seated on a table of 8, so we met three more couples and had a very pleasant evening with some lovely new company. The staff without exception were all amazingly helpful and friendly and we will be booking another gastronomic evening here before Christmas.

  • Stayed June 2013, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
Thank ArizonaSky
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
WAKEFIELD
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
Reviewed June 6, 2013

I recently took my wife for a surprise break to North Yorkshire and we stayed overnight at the Black Swan. I'm still wallowing in the resultant brownie points. I chose their Spring Break package with tasting menu dinner complete with a selection of the appropriate wines for each course.
On arrival we were presented with a room upgrade, Prosecco and cream tea in the garden (clear blue sky) and in the room a selection of small gifts that women seem to like. From there it just got better. All the staff were brilliant. The choice of Zoltan as the upmarket Manuel in the restaurant was a master stroke. That said all the other restaurant staff certainly knew their stuff. The young lady who looked after our table was exceptional. The room was perfect with views out over the market square. The bathroom was more than adequate but a little low - at 6'-4" I had to duck under the door frame to get in.

All in all a perfect stay and I could recommend the hotel to anyone.

Room Tip: Room 5 on second floor overlooking the Market Square but I'm sure there are others equally as go...
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  • Stayed June 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
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    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
2 Thank WAKEFIELDJRB
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Northwich, United Kingdom
Level 5 Contributor
76 reviews
48 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 75 helpful votes
Reviewed June 5, 2013

So we end our 200 mile walk after staying in the full spectrum of B&B’s and hotels and we arrive at The Black Swan, this is where our wives meet us and we all have a good night out.

Now you have read all the reviews and you know this hotel has a 2-rosette restaurant and is rated as a 4 star hotel. So it’s fair to say our expectations were very high – after all this is a top dollar hotel and restaurant.
Our greeting at the front desk was abrupt and not in your wildest dreams could have been described as welcoming.
The tearoom was okay the service good but the pastry was dry and past it’s best!

The room was fine with big soft fluffy towels and a very comfortable bed. The turndown service was carried out unobtrusively and the room and bathroom were ‘as new’ after we returned from dinner.

The dinner was a disaster – now I fully except after re reading all the other comments that we have been unlucky – but it doesn’t alter the fact that our ‘special night’ was dreadful! A synopsis of the events are as follows:

a) Of the 4 menus we were given 1 was different – when queried we told that we could share the 3 correct ones!
b) When we ordered (from the correct menus) we were advised there had been a typing error and dish didn’t have scallops.
c) The sommelier didn’t know the wine we ordered by name and we had to give them the number.
d) When the dish arrived it did have scallops – talk about right and left hand!
e) We sat down at our table at 20:00 and our main course didn’t arrive until 22:05.
f) My main was tepid 2 others were overcooked and one was good.
g) The waitress asked if everything was okay – if you don’t want to know you shouldn’t ask the question – so we told her what the problems were. To which she started to argue the toss! The restaurant manager miraculously appeared and apologised profusely.
h) Now for the first time it turned into a 2 rosette restaurant, he comped our not inconsiderable drinks bill and was professionalism personified.

Since returning we have had a letter from the General Manager apologising for the service we received. I have therefore thought long and hard about whether I should write this review. We heard another diner in the restaurant congratulating the staff on a lovely meal etc. I’m sure my experience must have been well below their normal standards but you can only speak as find.

I ask myself this question would I go again? The answer is unfortunately NO I would not.

  • Stayed May 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
2 Thank Jim S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London, United Kingdom
Level 6 Contributor
131 reviews
123 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 133 helpful votes
Reviewed May 30, 2013

It's a lovely hotel with a lively bar, excellent food and a great location in the beautiful town of Helmsley. We had a few issues, though. We were stuck in the very farthest room which was a good walk from reception and didn't have much of a view to speak of. The radiator was stuck in the 'on' position and I reported it. However, I had to go to reception later to find out if it had been fixed and nobody seemed to know. In the end they offered us a different room and moved all our stuff for us while we were out. At breakfast I noticed that the (hot) food of the chap on the table next to us was brought to his table while he was away from the table which is pretty bad form. Also the couple next to us seemed annoyed at having to chase for coffee etc. Also the shower wasn't great and caused a seriously wet floor. But overall I think 4 stars is fair - you should definitely try the restaurant, it was top notch food.

  • Stayed May 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
1 Thank tonysony
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London, United Kingdom
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed May 30, 2013

I've now stayed at this hotel twice and been thoroughly impressed each time. Having stayed in both the garden rooms at the back and also a room at the front, overlooking the square I can say that both are extremely well-appointed and comfortable.

The packages they offer are definitely worth the money and the food is exceptional, with a great atmosphere in the dining room and also for breakfast in the morning (where there is a fantastic selection of cooked dishes and cold food).

The staff are incredibly friendly and the hotel has some lovely touches to make it a really cosy, romantic and welcoming hotel. It's the perfect place to get away from it all, the village is picturesque and the hotel really makes it stand out for a trip. We drive all the way up from London just to go there.

We are returning for our third stay in a few weeks and I'm really looking forward to it - July can't come quickly enough!

  • Stayed June 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
1 Thank Bowway
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
York England
Level 3 Contributor
10 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 15 helpful votes
Reviewed May 28, 2013

Had a lovely afternoon tea every thing was fresh,tasty,and well presented,
The staff were polite efficient and friendly.
The decor and cleanliness of the hotel very good.
Not the cheapest but I think worth the money for a treat.
We had a pleasant walk around the square and browsed in a few shops and then visited Duncombe park for the bird of prey demonstration .

  • Stayed May 2013, traveled on business
    • Value
    • Location
    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
Thank MrsLovelyYorkEngland
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about The Black Swan Hotel

Property: The Black Swan Hotel
Address: Market Place, Helmsley YO62 5BJ, England
Location: United Kingdom > England > Yorkshire > North Yorkshire > Helmsley
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Center with Internet Access Free Parking Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Suites Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #2 of 5 Hotels in Helmsley
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:4 star — The Black Swan Hotel 4*
Number of rooms: 45
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Located in one of Yorkshire's prettiest market towns, The Black Swan in Helmsley is a superb historic inn, turned boutique hotel. Dating back to the C15th the hotel, rich in history and charm, blends antiques with classic contemporary design creating the perfect place for a relaxing break. With its own 3 AA rosette restaurant and award winning tearoom, The Black Swan Hotel provides the perfect backdrop for a romantic getaway and a chance to escape the everyday stresses and strains. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Black Swan Helmsley
Black Swan Hotel
The Black Swan Hotel Helmsley, England

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