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“Has improved no end!”
Review of The Grand Hotel

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The Grand Hotel
Ranked #6 of 7 Port Talbot B&B and Inns
Reviewed March 8, 2012

Upon reading the reviews below, I can only feel upset. I visited the Grand Hotel recently (I believe it is now under new management...) and found the hotel to be nothing but pleasant.

My room was simple, but both clean and spacious. The food served was delicious and the service prompt and friendly. I stayed over the weekend and was surprised to find that the bar had live music which my husband and I thoroughly enjoyed!

The location was convenient for both the train station and the town.

I have to say, I have no complaints at all, the staff were professional, polite and approachable. If the reviews below are to be believed, then I feel that the new management have done an excellent job at turning this hotel around.

Would recommend to anyone staying in the area, and will certainly be visiting again!

Room Tip: The suites are outstanding, VERY spacious - and at I think it was only about a tenner more than a do...
  • Stayed: February 2012, traveled with family
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1  Thank StaceyS212
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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62 - 68 of 68 reviews

Reviewed October 13, 2011

No doubt people are reading these reviews and forming not the best opinion of the Hotel. In my review also the comments do not inspire confidence. Despite a reply from the management referencing to a beer tasting service carried out by the local solicitors and an under the belt dig at myself I would like to rebalance the views of anybody staying at this hotel. Firstly it has an excellent location, could not be better directly opposite the train station and just far enough away from the town centre to walk. Nearby, say 60 metres, there is an excellent restaurant called Adore Bistro. (I would give the goats cheese starter a try and go for the steaks). With regard the bars in the hotel they generally attract a middle aged quiet local crowd and despite my comments on a particular pint the beer is very good. There is plenty of room and you are unlikely to feel unsatisfied. There is safe car parking at the hotel rear. If you are visiting the area on business its probably ideal. Again its a great choice for mountain bikers . Families I'm not so sure you may prefer nearer the beach in the summer. Since my earlier comments I can confirm a colleague stayed there out of convenience and I was very re assured to hear a good report for friendliness of welcome and the general overall short stay. Port Talbot can get a bit boisterous around the weekend especially if there is a big rugby event. Usually there is very little trouble in the area from anti social behaviour or drinking however around 2am on a weekend the taxi rank by the kebab shops can be a place to avoid. Summing up I would go back to the positive comments on the Grand where most locals have a positive association with it. Myself this was the early 1980s and the back bar or watching bands such as the Reactions in the front bar. The staff are I guess are friendly and I saw this when I bumped into the manageress recently passing the door who accepted my apology about the previous review. If your from Port Talbot you would know the staff would put most complaints right at the flick of a switch. When you are a visitor you may feel intimidated making a complaint and its easy see why if there are small things that bother you yet are sufferable. Maybe from a staff point of view it would be good to advise and reassure people on arrival , "Anything your not happy with please let us have the chance to put it right !" after all Port Talbot looks a lot worse than it is. Its a friendly place perhaps it needs to show it more .

Room Tip: Ask for a good room thats about all it needs in Port Talbot and that applies anywhere !!!
  • Stayed: July 2011, traveled on business
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2  Thank Lyonresh
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed September 25, 2011

Stayed at the Grand Hotel Saturday 24th September OMG what a nightmare turned up and is full of scaffolding. Have never been so scared in all my life. With drunks outside Filthy room and the un -suite smelt of urine!
Thank god it was only for 1 night did try and book in another hotel but was fully booked.
Couldn't wait to leave so we didn't even stay for breakfast even though it was included in the price. Would never go back.

  • Stayed: September 2011, traveled as a couple
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3  Thank Julie L
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
GHPORTTALBOT, Manager at The Grand Hotel, responded to this reviewResponded October 5, 2011

Thank you for taking the time to review our hotel on Trip Advisor. We are sorry that you did not enjoy your stay. There is scaffolding outside our hotel because we are having an external refurb which includes total external painting and new signage. In our hotel we have a public bar which hosts most sports events on Sky and on ESPN on the Saturday you stayed with us there were numerous sporting events so the bar was quite busy. Due to the smoking laws our customers now have to smoke outside in our smoking area. We are sorry if you felt threatened by these people. As for the comment about the room why didn’t you tell us at reception that you were not happy with it so that we could of either of changed your room or tried to have rectified the problems you had with it.. If you don’t tell us you have a problem and give us the chance to put things right I don’t think it’s fair to slate us on Trip Advisor. You wouldn’t buy something in a shop and then if you weren’t happy with it go to trading standards before taking it back to the shop for them to sort it first!

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Reviewed June 13, 2011

Told of place by a friend in London when unable to get hotel in Cardiff. Found staff to all be friendly and helpful. Building has seen better days but was VERY clean throughout.
Breakfast was good (didn't eat at other times as was in Cardiff during days). Only 30 minutes from Cardiff Central by train and hotel 100 meters from Port Talbot station. Will happily use again during next rugby season, much better than staying in some overpriced impersonal chain hotel in Cardiff. Big Jon.

  • Stayed: May 2011, traveled with friends
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Thank TangoJon
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 6, 2011

I am a local resident with a business in the area who occasionally has organised for staff vising the Steelworks to stay at this hotel given its prime location and reasonable fees. Historically many people in Port Talbot have a positive association with the Grand Hotel and want it to be a success. Until the early 1970's it was the best place to stay in the town. Today it suffers only from an older design layout and looks a little tired in a town also lacking in ambition. It has its good points - especially its location opposite the train station. This can sort out confusions when referring to its loction and convenience to a contractor visiting the town. Matter of fact its perfect in every way for this market. The bad side I know from comments of staff and contractors who have stayed there. The Hotel send staff for training and Ive met a few of them when Ive been on a computer course, all of which have been most pleasant.

Its sad then then Im feel aggrieved enough to now leave negative comments. On Saturday 5th March 2011 I visited the public bar to get a beer to meet friends.The bar was unattended and I waited there for a full 5 minutes until I noticed the barmaid/manageress was engrossed in conversation the wrong side of the bar unaware of my presence. I prompted nobody was serving and immediately she responded serving me my pint of the hand pulled beer. Upon sitting down with my friends I started to get concerns on the taste of my pint. It was tangy & barely drinkable. My friends are regulars at the hotel and the conversation turned to suggestions that I should have bought creamflow beer as this is a low seller - maybe that explained the taste or the lines not being clear. As we left for the train I mentioned to the barman my concerns and hand back the last 20% of the glass. I had no initial interest in a refund - just to advise. The lad serving behind the bar was first class, apologetic and suggested I have another pint. My feelings -given the earlier bad service, where I had waited and then been served indifferently a bad pint - I asked for a token "refund of 1/2 the cost". I now accept - maybe this was very small minded of me and perhaps now I wish I had just not mentioned anything the first place.

It was at this point the barman got the manageress. She arrived at the bar ready charged already with a bad customer attitude. "You've drunk the beer now you want a refund ..... Why did you not return it straight away." Of course nothing wrong with her comments just the manner of attitude delivering the response. I was not driven by the fact I wanted a refund - I only considered this at the point the barman offered me another drink - My initial mention only to advise on the possibility it was not a good pint. I now found myself challenged by the manageress who I first encountered not doing their job properly, and she continued to treat my complaint in a confrontational and insulting manner. A more friendly “Im sorry but if you advised earlier I could have changed it but I will however see that the next person who orders a pint will be advised to check the taste”. That would have been suitable enough I guess.

Its not in anyones interest to run down a business in our town rather to be constructive so with this in mind next day Sunday I phoned to speak to the hotel manager. I was answered by the same manageress who upon finding out my reasons continued mockingly “I remember -your the person from yesterday who drank the beer and then wanted a refund.”

I left a message for the owner in Porthcawl with the suggestion that this type of service is bad for business. At one time maybe 5 years in the past I was told the hotel used to turn away single day customers simply because the person in charge did not want the effort of making up the rooms. We got that information from a concerned but demoralised staff member at the time when I tried to make a booking (The hotel phone advertised was not the correct number) I had to visit in person to see how someone was turned away when another colleague was actually staying there in a part empty hotel. The later comment is totally unrelated to the recent experience. Perhaps its time to considert a mystery shopper to identify improvement.The fact that I have taken such effort to complain is not in any way to be vindictive towards the manageress. I want no refund – im just like many in this town who would prefer to see a better mannered environment and a respect towards customers unless of course they merit otherwise.

In closing I would comment that to take a look at the Aberavon Beach Hotel which I would recommend highly especially for holidaymakers and its beachfront location. Another option is the Twelve Knights at Margam or Blancos in town near the bus station.

  • Stayed: March 2011, traveled solo
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2  Thank Lyonresh
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
GHPORTTALBOT, Manager at The Grand Hotel, responded to this reviewResponded March 10, 2011

May I comment on your complaint? The lines for the beer were cleaned by myself on Wednesday 2nd March; unfortunately we had sold out of the hand pulled Abbotts Ale in question so our lines were left with water in them until Friday evening. Our delivery came on Thursday 3rd March and as you may be aware if you are an ale drinker the beer needs to settle. On Friday evening the first people to ask for Abbotts Ale were two local solicitors whom regularly drink at the Grand Hotel I personally connected it and they were more than happy with their pints. During this night we had numerous people drinking the Abbotts Ale who were also happy with theirs too. On Saturday before you came into the bar we had a group of men going to Cardiff on the train two of these also ordered Abbotts Ale they two enjoyed their pints. Real Ale is not to everybody’s taste so may I suggest that like your friends suggestion you stick to drinking the Cream flow products.

May I also point out that the manageress in question has worked at the Hotel for the past 9yrs and started working here as a bottle girl she has worked her way up to the management position due to the fact that residents, customer and staff like and respect her.

Replying to the comment about the fact we don't take one night stays at our hotel:
The cliental that stay at our hotel are mainly contractors visiting the area, 80% of our customers are only in the area for 1 or 2 nights per week and the other 20% for longer contracts. We employ numerous chamber persons so if we didn’t take 1 night bookings they would be unemployed.

We have been trading for over 24 years using the same telephone number so why would we advertise with the wrong number!!!

I must also point out to you that I have tried to phone you on your landline number several times but as you do not have an answer machine I cannot leave you a personal message.

I and a few of my staff were as you rightly said took part in a computer course which during this course you were asked by the instructor to stop disrupting the lessons by using your mobile phone constantly during the course of the lessons. After which you never returned!

As you have suggested to people to stay at other hotels in the Port Talbot area and not ours may I ask you to drink at other pubs in the town and not ours. Good day to you.

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 16, 2010

The first thing i noticed when pulling up to the hotel, was on the side of the hotel in big red letters was the name of the hotel, the R in the word GRAND was missing. Out front were alot of drunk young locas smoking and making quite alot of noise. The receptionist was really friendly which is my only plus for this place, though the office she was caged and everything done through the bars !

The room was large, but looked dirty and old, the pillows were flat and the window again was barred i guess for safty. The bathroom oddly had a thick blue carpet, which smelled of urine, the bath tub was very rusty in the corners and the white shower curtain had yellow mold on it ! The whole room had a very unpleasant smell to it, in short it stank!.

The only reason i agreed to stay here is because it was for one night only and near my friends, i slept in my clothes ontop of the bed with all the lights on.

The only positives of this hotel was the receptionist was very friendly and helpfull, and it was across from the train station so i could leave as early as possible !

  • Stayed: November 2010, traveled solo
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2  Thank ScottDUK
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed April 24, 2016 via mobile
Google Translation

Stayed: April 2016, traveled on business
Thank ValerioASR
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about The Grand Hotel

Address: Station Road, Port Talbot SA13 1DE, Wales
Phone Number:
Location: United Kingdom > Wales > South Wales > Neath Port Talbot > Port Talbot
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free Breakfast Free Parking Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Suites Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #6 of 7 B&Bs / Inns in Port Talbot
Price Range: $64 - $90 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:3 star — The Grand Hotel 3*
Number of rooms: 32
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
We are a busy hotel, ideally situated close to various attractions and directly opposite the train station. We host a variety of entertainment including bands and cabarets. We serve delicious home cooked meals. All our rooms are en suite and equipped with tea/coffee making facilities. We have a function room available and we cater to all occasions, we also have a conference room and beer garden. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
The Grand Hotel Port Talbot, Wales

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