We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

“Trying hard but not quite there”
Review of Melville Castle

Best prices for -
Check In mm/dd/yyyy Check Out mm/dd/yyyy
Prices are for 1 room, 2 adults
Show Prices
Compare best prices from top travel sites
and 11 more sites!
Melville Castle
Ranked #2 of 3 Hotels in Dalkeith
Reviewed March 27, 2014

Booked afternoon tea and overnight stay (via itison) in March. Great value for money and greeted by friendly staff and served a delightful high tea in the lounge, again by friendly staff. Hotel itself very grand and room clean and spacious with direct access to the garden. Decor old fashioned but as described and also as you would expect for an old Castle Hotel.
Breakfast was exceedingly poor with piped music playing throughout a very cold dining/bar room.
Appeared to be only one member of staff who was doing his best but, not explained very well, no juice glasses left, boxed cereals and pots of sweet yogurt for starters then, Full English or Scrambled Eggs. No vegetarian choice, went for eggs which arrived tepid, odd flavour and with eh warmed bread as opposed to toast. No fresh fruit or rolls or good quality yogurt - was disappointing and would have complained if we were paying the full price. All in all, staff great and Hotel trying hard to be 5 star but more staff may be a start and upgrade the breakfast. F

  • Stayed: March 2014, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Review collected in partnership with this hotel
1  Thank Fiona R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Write a ReviewReviews (1,024)
Traveler rating
Traveler type
Time of year
Language

861 - 867 of 1,024 reviews

Reviewed March 27, 2014

Main area of the room was very nicely furnished but there was a constant bad smell that the hotel had tried to mask by using a plug in air fresh unit. The bathroom shower and bath worked well but the overall appearance was in need of upgrading and not enhanced by the addition of a plastic flower pot! The general appearance of carpets and decoration throughout the hotel was shabby - certainly no sign of the "GRANDEUR" as it was advertised to be. The staff were generally disinterested and the breakfast was the worst we have had in any hotel we have stayed in. The food was of such a poor standard that we decided against staying for the afternoon and checked out as soon as possible.
As this had been a Christmas present from our children it was all the more disappointing and I would definitely advise anyone against booking this hotel.

Mr and Mrs C G Bell
Birkill
By Dundee

  • Stayed: March 2014, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
1  Thank Heather B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 26, 2014

I attended a friends wedding at melville castle in the marquee the setting was stunning the staff and service I cannot fault,the fact that over 100 ppl had to sit and eat in the freezing cold was of great concern.There was no announcement made by a general manager to inform his guests of this problem.This was spoken about by many other guests , in defence I will point out that the service given and explanation also given by the planner and your food and beverage manager to all guests re the heating was dealt with professionally,they kept our spirits high and are an asset to your establishment,I can say that we were all let down that the hotel manager seemed to be hiding whenever we asked for him.-I would hope that the service standard given continues and that in future the manager shows face.Mick + Gill

  • Stayed: March 2014
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
3  Thank barcid
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 26, 2014

I booked this hotel in December for march as a surprise birthday/Christmas present for my fiancé. I was contacted about ten days before to say that due to a problem with their computer "WE" now had a problem as we didn't have a room. I told them "THEY" had the problem. They found us an alternative hotel , braidhills hotel. Such a let down at the last minute.

Stayed: March 2014, traveled as a couple
5  Thank Roy A
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Manager M, General Manager at Melville Castle, responded to this reviewResponded April 6, 2014

The reviewers are right in what they state, and we understand how they might have felt.
We have apologized and thought to have compensated for the inconvenience. We did have an IT problem which resulted in having to find alternative accommodation for some guests on some dates. This has been noted by other affected reviewers on this board.

For the benefit of readers, we would like to reassure that this was an isolated incident and that we took it very seriously by arranging a full refund or an offer of alternative accommodation of a similar or higher standard, on the exact terms as it was booked with us, with transport if required, and offered a complimentary night stay at the castle in the future.

Although the problem did certainly occur, we clearly understood it was ours to solve and, although we are sorry it did not satisfy the reviewers, we are glad that our measures were considered acceptable by others and we thank them for their understanding.

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 25, 2014

I Attended a family wedding here on 22nd March 2014 in the marquee, it was absolutely freezing even the red wine! We got different excuses from staff saying workmen had used up the fuel allocation which ran out at 3pm we didn't have the wedding breakfast until 4pm yet it took them until after 6pm to provide any sort of heating,about 90% of the 120 guests had jackets on throughout the meal as it was so cold, there was also a 30/45 minute wait at the bar, where they used bottles of 99p Barr cola. I wouldn't have my wedding here and I certainly would NOT recommend it!!!!!

  • Stayed: March 2014, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
4  Thank Juliehay
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Manager M, General Manager at Melville Castle, responded to this reviewResponded June 22, 2014

Although the review is written with the added emotional charge expected from an invited family member, it is true that on that occasion our marquee heating system was out of action for a few hours during the day which did cause a degree of discomfort to guests. The fault was unpredictable and unforeseeable (it was mechanical, rather than usage of fuel as intimated by the reviewer).

It was unfortunate and certainly a problem at the time, but the situation was dealt with promptly on the day, causing only minor disruption, and it was discussed with the couple and the family at the time and after the event. We took full responsibility and ensured all parties involved were satisfied with the outcome of the discussions, over and above expectations.

We would like to mention that, beside the above, all other aspects of the day went very well. Our wedding planner ensured the day progressed smoothly and everyone had a great time

We would like to reassure future potential wedding guests that we take great care and planning into ensuring such an important day goes well and that Jane Dayus Hinch, our Wedding Planner,will always ensure that any potential hiccups are eliminated or minimized.

We are of course disappointed that the reviewer was not satisfied by our efforts to the extent that she felt the need to write this review, but we are comfortable with the fact that, although we did have a problem on the day, we acted promptly, minimized the impact, the day was a success otherwise and, having taken responsibility, we discussed it with the couple after the event to mutual satisfaction.

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 25, 2014

Me and my Boyfriend stayed at the hotel through a gift on groupon. The first impressions of the castle were fabulous and very impressive. unfortunately the decor inside was very dated and was in need of an update it seemed like the decor hadn't changed for 30 years, nothing matched with the castle, there was even an indian looking statue in the restaurant. The room was nice but basic, not really the luxury 4 star room you'd expect. The gentleman on reception was very friendly and check in was smooth, but as for the waiting staff it was a different matter. after we dropped off the bags we headed out to explore the grounds which again were very basic and had one fountain which wasn't working at the time, when we came back inside we thought we'd check out the library bar, when we walked through a member of staff asked if she could help us, after saying we were just looking she clearly didn't understand as she asked us again quite impatiently 'how can i help you!' force to sit down we had a pot of tea, which again none of the crockery matched. as for dinner there was three staff waiting which caused us to be waiting for 15 minutes without drinks to then be asked what would we like to eat, after ordering drinks and food it then took another 10-15 minutes to be given our drinks which were sat on the bar waiting to be taken over. The food was ok, nothing special. Breakfast was worse we sat down and weren't told how the breakfast worked or where to get cereal etc. we were asked if we wanted full english, but no tea or coffee was brought to the table. when the breakfast came it was luke warm but tasty, however there were no mushrooms, the bacon came later on a separate plate and there was about a tea spoon worth of beans and no sauce. Unfortunately we weren't asked if we wanted toast till after we'd finished breakfast, and the creel section had no sugar, one jug of milk, three bowls that weren't cleaned properly, the juice i was left with was a dribble of apple juice, no orange. Overall the hotel needs serious structure especially in the restaurant my boyfriend is a manager at a restaurant, and suggested that the restaurant had no clear out lay to know which table ordered what... as we were given other peoples food about three times during our two meals there. there was clearly a lack of staff, the manager needs to really address the restaurant issues and re decorate!!!!!! Not a luxury hotel in my opinion, waste of a beautiful building and perfect location to run a very successful hotel.

Also, there isn't much o do around the hotel, if upgraded a spa or swimming and fitness centre wouldn't go amiss along with landscaping the grounds.

  • Stayed: March 2014, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
3  Thank rebecca b
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 25, 2014

We stayed at Melville Castle on Saturday 8th March as a surprise Birthday for myself.

We booked into a family room in the attic after a lovely warm and welcoming greeting from the Receptionist. The room was clean and tidy albeit a bit out of the way down a very chilly corridor and up some stairs again very drafty and cold.

We showered and changed for dinner, having been told that the restaurant had a lovely choice of menu for all the people in our party ranging from aged 10, 15 and adult.

We arrived back down at the Reception to be told that the restaurant was in the basement, this we thought odd! On reaching the basement my partner informed the manager that we had booked the restaurant not the bar meal area, we were then told this was the restaurant. As we had travelled by train and taxi, we had no choice really but to stay and see what the restaurant had to offer. We ordered a bottle of Chardonnay which arrived luke warm, we sent it back only to receive another bottle exactly the same to which we said that this was unacceptable. The waitress just laughed and said she thought the wine cooler was broken but could sort it. We were then speechless when she returned with the same luke warm wine and two large wine glasses full of ice cubes and then poured our wine into them with a cheery, there you go!!!

The food was tasty although the menu was extremely lacking, however, the manager did arrange for our 10 year old son to receive sausage and mash as there wasn't anything that sufficed on the main menu. This we thought was a nice gesture.

After dinner we returned to our room and had a reasonable nights sleep although our bed was a bit on the hard side.

Breakfast was an experience to say the least as the venue was in full throw of preparing for a wedding fair and the hotel guests were clearly in the way and were being made to feel like second class citizens. We arrived, back in the basement for breakfast at 8.45 to be told in quite an aggressive manner to wait there as the staff needed to clear a table. Other guests then proceeded to go and sit down and were not told to wait as we were. 10 minutes later, a waiter told us to sit down and he would set the table, to which he brought 3 place settings (there were four of us). We then waited for a further 15 minutes without tea / coffee or any menu. When I asked the same waiter for a menu as I caught his eye, he grabbed one off the bar and flung it down on our table with a very rude 'I don't do breakfasts!'. We again were appalled at the service and told the next passing waitress of our disgust, she then began shaking and asked us what we wanted. We ordered our hot food and tea and coffee and toast. My tea came but no coffee arrived until we asked again. The breakfasts then came out one by one and the orders were all mixed up. No apologies but just a look of disdain because we asked why the order was so delayed and sent out one by one. The staff were literally running around like headless chickens, bumping into each other, dropping cutlery and plates like rabbits caught in the headlights. Nobody seemed to know what they were doing, nobody seemed to care about the guests. People on the tables next to us were also complaining and again they received rude and dismissive excuses for being busy due to the wedding fair due to start at noon.

We decided to leave the rest of the breakfast as it was a joke, we felt so rushed and offended and couldn't wait to pack our bags and leave.

This is a real shame as the hotel location is lovely, the hotel décor and period features are superb but the staff employed to deliver the service would be better suited to a greasy spoon café where people don't expect much in the way of service. The staff dress was poor and they presented themselves in a very dishevelled way.

I am sure, this hotel can be brought round and up to speed but as it stands at present in is certainly not worthy of its 4* status in our opinion.

  • Stayed: March 2014, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
3  Thank 78Lynda
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Hotels you might also like...
Also consider these accommodations in or near Dalkeith
2.4 mi away
Dalhousie Castle
Dalhousie Castle
#1 of 1 in Bonnyrigg
1,472 reviews
3.1 mi away
Carberry Tower Mansion House and Estate
0.4 mi away
Premier Inn Edinburgh A7 (Dalkeith) Hotel
Show Prices
Show Prices
Show Prices
3.1 mi away
Premier Inn Edinburgh A1 (Musselburgh) Hotel
4.9 mi away
Best Western Edinburgh South Braid Hills Hotel
3.5 mi away
Best Western Kings Manor Hotel
Show Prices
Show Prices
Show Prices

Been to Melville Castle? Share your experiences!

Write a Review Add Photos & Videos

Additional Information about Melville Castle

Address: Gilmerton Road, Dalkeith EH18 1AP, Scotland
Location: United Kingdom > Scotland > Midlothian > Dalkeith
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beverage Selection Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Suites Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #2 of 3 Hotels in Dalkeith
Price Range: $102 - $237 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4 star — Melville Castle 4*
Number of rooms: 32
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Melville Castle, once home to the influential Dundas family, is set within a 50 acre estate of wooded parkland on the picturesque banks of the river North Esk. Located just 20 minute drive from Edinburgh’s city center this luxurious castle offers the tranquility of a country setting on the doorstep of this thriving city. The 32 classically styled bedrooms offer all the luxury & comfort you deserve and our friendly team will take pleasure in catering to all your requirements during your stay. The Castle provides Bed and Breakfast accommodation and there are a number of award winning and highly recommended restaurants within 5 minutes drive. At one time the hunting seat of Mary Queen of Scots, the Castle was commissioned by the first Viscount Melville in 1791 for entertaining, which it continues to do to this day. We have ample free parking and a frequent 24 hour bus service to Edinburgh from the bus stop at the Castle Gates. Complimentary city maps and bus timetable are available at reception. Whether lounging with a drink next to a crackling fire in our library bar, or relaxing over a game of croquet on the lawn, we are sure you will enjoy your stay with us! ... more   less 
Reservation Options:
TripAdvisor is proud to partner with Booking.com, Travelocity, Hotels.com, Expedia, Orbitz, TripOnline SA, Hotwire, Agoda, getaroom.com, Priceline, HotelQuickly, Evoline ltd and Cancelon so you can book your Melville Castle reservations with confidence. We help millions of travelers each month to find the perfect hotel for both vacation and business trips, always with the best discounts and special offers.
Also Known As:
Melville Castle Dalkeith, Scotland

Is This Your TripAdvisor Listing?

Own or manage this property? Claim your listing for free to respond to reviews, update your profile and much more.

Claim Your Listing