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“Not as awful as some reviewers allude to”
3 of 5 bubbles Review of Blazing Donkey

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Blazing Donkey
Ranked #1 of 1 Ham B&B and Inns
Gravesend, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
215 reviews
16 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 143 helpful votes
“Not as awful as some reviewers allude to”
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed September 29, 2013

The afternoon of the day we were booked in to stay at the Blazing Donkey saw me looking at the reviews on Trip Advisor, and I was apprehensive to say the least upon arrival.
My wife was so alarmed she even considered that we not even bother going.
As we arrived a 90+ guest wedding was in full swing. Confined to the marquee with some overspill to the bar we weren't overly worried.
The outside of the building was pretty much the problem with the whole establishment; dingy and somewhat past it's best.
The reception was, oddly, off the restaurant. All quite dark with stone floor and swathes of hops or similar hanging from the beams. Bare wooded tables throughout.
The duty manager arrived after a few minutes of waiting, clearly busy dealing with the wedding guests. He was a little abrupt as if to say "look, I'm a busy man, no time for conversations".
We were shown the door of room 13, corner of a block of single story rooms overlooking a courtyard.
The room was OK. Nothing stood out as poor. It was disappointing to have 2 single beds pushed together for the double room. This always irritates me.
The room was very warm, with the bathroom rad full on.
Tea/coffee supplied with all necessary items.
Some toiletries in the bathroom.
Decor was dingy. Oh, what a lick of white paint and some brighter fittings could do.
We paid about £40 for bed and breakfast with Amazon Local. Not worth any more than that. If I paid some £140 odd pounds for the experience I would be feeling ripped off.
We had been coerced in to booking the A la carte dinner, as a condition of being able to book the night. £45. More than the room and breakfast. It was along the lines of "the only way you can use your voucher is to book dinner with us.
The dinner.
The waiter was multi-tasked.
He ran the restuarant, was the barman, and seemed to have some responsibilities around reception as well. Lot's of waitresses.....all dealing with the wedding reception.
Pleasant enough.
The food was ordered at fairly scruffy tables and lacklustre chairs. A tea light in a glass jar sufficed as mood lighting.
After ordering, and by which time another table was occupied, we were approached by the waiter. "Sorry it will be a 10 minute wait". 25 minutes later I was about to complain and then the starters arrived. OK.
Things sped up and we were away by 9pm having sat down at 7pm.
Food was alright. Worth £45? No way. Average only. My beer (which was off I suspected) and my wife's Coke, came to £5.50. So, the whole meal was £50.50.
So, the Donkey managed to take me for this amount over and above the cost of the room as a "condition" of booking.
Be wary of this.
I am not certain they can impose this condition. B and B would have been fine. We could have eaten elsewhere for half the price and with twice the enjoyment. Have no doubts.
Breakfast for us was tea and toast with cereal. Only 3 cereals available. Cornflakes, bran flakes and weetabix. That was it. They did a full English but I didn't have it so no comment.
Overall, no more than average. AND, if the management read this, make more effort, brighten the place up, and DO NOT say that you can only book a room with a voucher if you pay for dinner. The restaurant was not full so I reckon this was a con. And don't treat your guests with such dismissiveness while tending to what is clearly your key business...weddings. If you can't cope with the staff you have, close down the hotel business and concentrate just on weddings.
So, there you have it. A memorable experience. Won't ever be back, I am sorry to say.

  • Stayed September 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Bob M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Rating summary
  • Location
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    3.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    3 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    3 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    3.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    3.5 of 5 bubbles
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (279)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • Any
English first
Bristol, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
5 reviews
4 hotel reviews
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed September 27, 2013

I would like to thank the staff of this Hotel from the time we booked in we were made to fill welcomed ( from the staff, The chef who made me a meal which was not on menu to the ladies who cleaned our Room, The room was comfy and spacious. The Hotel could perhaps supply what Venues and Amenities are close by (Hovercraft rides was within 2miles only found out on way home).Sell maps of local Area

  • Stayed September 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank johnandpauline18
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
13 reviews
11 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 12 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed September 23, 2013

Not a bad hotel by any means most rooms situated in what looks like an old stables set-up
Cant comment on dinner as we went to a local pub in Sandwich for dinner.
Breakfast was good with a full English available.
Drinks a bit pricey and no Crisps of snacks behind the bar?
There was a wedding on when we stayed but this did not bother us as evening venue was som e way from the rooms.
I liked it here as it was different cant understand some of the comments as your not paying five star prices so dont expect a five star Hotel.
Rooms were ok plenty of hot water and very warm heating.
Staff could of been friendlier but think wedding was taking up a lot of their time.
We ent to Sandwich for Sunday Roast in one of the many nice pubs there.
I would go here again just dont expect a five star experiance

  • Stayed September 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Steve5059
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
180 reviews
33 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 65 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed September 22, 2013

Very clean but dark inside needs the women's touch a bit pricey starter one tomato sliced seven pounds nice rooms large bath not sure access in winter would have gone with a theme to hotel perhaps, a blazing donkey cocktail the drink with a kick weddings nice garden

Room Tip: Need Sat nav try not to go in dark don't laugh at signposts to ham sandwich
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  • Stayed September 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank ChristineLangton
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
4 reviews
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed September 18, 2013

We spent 2 nights at the Blazing Donkey, and for what we paid we could not complain. No its not 5 star but you are not paying 5 star prices!! The room we had was comfortable and clean..No problems with the power supply, the shower was clean and piping hot.
We had breakfast and dinner on both days and really could not fault the food. In fact it was excellent, you certainly won't go home hungry.
As for the staff and management we found them all very pleasant. Had a chat with Richard the Manager before we left and he was very informative about the area. I think you should give this place a try. You might be pleasantly surprised. As Richard said himself the Ritz its not, but then if you pay beer prices you can't expect champagne.

  • Stayed September 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Kay P
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Oldham, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
13 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 24 helpful votes
1 of 5 bubbles Reviewed September 16, 2013

I have never written a review before but felt I needed to warn people about these cowboys. We paid £99 for one night stay up front and I was utterly disgusted with the whole experience.

There was a number of things that made our stay uncomfortable, the first being the lack of actual glasses at the bar before the wedding ceremony, we were told that we had to bring our glasses back so they could use those as they had ran out of glasses. For one this isn’t very hygienic and two, pubs are now meant to serve all drinks in a clean glass.

Secondly, our ‘double’ bed was actually two single beds pushed together with a sheet over. One of the beds was higher than the other, not making for the best night’s sleep. The carpet was dirty and there was a pair of boxer shorts beneath the window outside!! In the bathroom was two little bottles of conditioner, instead of a shampoo.

The next morning we woke up to no electricity, there was no power from any of the sockets at all and no lights. We couldn’t have a shower, as I couldn’t dry my hair so decided to call reception from the room phone, we tried 4 or 5 times, no answer. This is not “24 hour room service” as stated on the website. We had to get dressed, go to reception and advise them that we didn’t have power. We sat down for breakfast at 9.15 and were told there was more sausages, egg and beans coming out so we sat and waited, nothing arrived so after asking again the waiter said no, there is nothing else coming out. We were left eating cold egg and cold beans! Not exactly the full breakfast we were promised.

So, we go back to our room, the receptionist follows us and turns the electricity back on, apparently it had ‘tripped’, I went to have a shower and there was no hot water at all, in fact it was freezing, you definitely couldn’t shower in it! So we tried to ring reception again, guess what, no answer! We packed up our things, went to leave and there was not one person around the reception area.

I am upset and disappointed that we had paid £99 up front as I definitely would not have been paying for this experience. I sent a complaint letter when I got home, as did a number of people who had stayed the night of the wedding, however, the management were uninterested and quite honestly very rude. We were offered a night compensation with dinner but lets face it, they knew we were from the north of England so why would I want to travel a 500 mile round trip to stay in this hotel again! When asked to revise the compensation I received no response.

Avoid this place!!

  • Stayed August 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
6 Thank 188Nikki85
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Travelers are raving about these Ham hotels

2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed September 14, 2013

My wife and I celebrated our wedding reception at the Blazing Donkey on the 3rd August 2013.
I will write my review based on each section:

Wedding Planner - Harri the wedding planner was perfect and couldn't do enough during the planning of our wedding reception and on the day. Harri answered all our questions honestly and we would highly recommend her to anyone!

Marquee - The Marquee may look bare when you first visit the venue but once Harri and her team work their magic the venue will look marvellous!

Food- The food was fantastic (we chose the mushroom starter, the pork roast and eton mess). Make sure you choose the silver drink service as the wine is unlimited at dinner.

Rooms - The rooms really let the venue down! (which is why we cannot give an excellent rating) They are good but are dated and could really do with modernising (especially for the price we paid for the honey moon suite and also our guests rooms). However, I wouldn't let this put you off getting married here as the rooms are a very small element of your wedding day.

We would highly recommend the Blazing Donkey as a wedding reception venue, however we cannot comment on a wedding service as we were married in a church (however, the grounds and local countryside are beautiful).

  • Stayed August 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank ricardo_hann
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Blazing Donkey

Property: Blazing Donkey
Address: Hay Hill | Sandwich, Ham CT14 0ED, England
Location: United Kingdom > England > Kent > Ham
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Suites
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 1 B&Bs / Inns in Ham
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Hotel Class:3 star — Blazing Donkey 3*
Number of rooms: 22
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The Blazing Donkey is a 22 bedroom country hotel located near to Sandwich in Kent. The hotel boasts its ownrestaurant, and has a cosy bar and stunning garden with terrace for guests to enjoy. The hotel is owned and operated by the husband and wife team of Richard and Sherry Martin. The accommodation at the hotel is arranged in a courtyard and each of the well appointed en/suite roomsenjoy rural views. The rooms have flat screen TV's and baths with showers. Parking for guests is free.The hotel enjoys a very mixed patronage; from leisure break visitors, business travellersGolfers and wedding guests. The hotel is one of Kent's most popular special occasionvenues, and with good reason as the facilities are as extensive as the surroundings are beautiful. The hotel's restaurant produces a regularly changing menu inspired mainly from locally sourced produce. Lunch and dinner is served daily. Visitors can also enjoy morning coffees and afternoon cream teas. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Blazing Donkey Hotel Ham

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