27th May 2012 - The hotel looked lovely and we were given a warm welcome upon arrival at the door. Peter was helpful, friendly and very pleasant. When we tried to check in we were told the garden room we booked was not available as a guest from the previous night decided to stay on unexpectedly, instead they wanted to put us on the first floor and suggested we move after 1 night. After quite some time going back and forth and the need for quite a firm approach, we eventually spoke to the manager who showed us to our garden room and offered us a complimentary pass to the spa for the inconvenience. This was nice as we were on a b&b rate, however when we did use the spa pass (which would normally cost min £35 each) it was evident that the access to the hydrotherapy spa area was slack as the adjoining door with card access didn't close properly, hence allowing access to any guests using the leisure facility, which is a bonus, accept for guests who have paid through the nose for the privilege.
The room was nice and clean and the aircon was super, a real plus as we had beautifully hot weather :) from the outside the garden rooms and extension didn't match the traditional style of the hotel.
We ate in the Zen restaurant the first night - the food and service were excellent, really delicious and attentive service - completely different the following lunch time during our lovely spa experience - we waiting for 25 mins trying to catch the eye if a member of staff to order some drinks, after 10 mins I went inside and asked for 2 drinks to be told we had to order outside, I was given 2 menus and sat back down, 15 minutes later I had to remind them again - they apologised profusely but not a great experience.
The main bar was unattended when we arrived and when the barman did appear, during the conversation he proceeded to tell us how he was leaving to work in a top London bar. When we asked what time the hotel bar shut he told us when we stop spending money - ironic really as we tried to order a bottle of dom perignon, to be informed they don't have any in stock.
We ate in the manor restaurant on the second night the starter was amazing warm pork belly salad - absolutely lovely, followed by 2 very disappointing main courses and a tasty pudding. Unfortunately our waitress - who was lovely, very friendly, smiley and polite, accidentally knocked over a glass of expensive wine, which was only available by the bottle and not the glass. She was so apologetic, and went off to replace it. She returned with a glass from the bar - most definately not the same wine. When we complained to the wine waitress she went off and came back suggesting we take it up with the duty manager the next morning - this was not the resolve nor the attitude we would expect from a fine dining restaurant. Again a duty manager arrived apologising and did resolve the matter finally with satisfactory outcome, however again this level of service should be as standard and shouldn't require us complaining to be rectified.
All things said we actually had a really lovely weekend - we stay at 4/5 star hotels often and can honestly say our bill was more in line with the cost of a 5 star, with the standard of a good 3 star. Mostly the staff were genuinely helpful and friendly but the hotel didn't in our opinion live up to its rating or excellent reviews.
- Also Known As:
- Careys Manor Hotel And Senspa
- Careys Manor Hotel & Sen Brockenhurst
- Careys Manor Hotel & Sen
- Careys Manor Hotel Senspa
- Careys Manor Spa Senspa
- Careys Manor
- Careys Hotel Manor
- Careys Manor Brockenhurst
- Careys Manor Hotel
- Careys Manor Hotel & SenSpa Brockenhurst, New Forest
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Careys Manor Hotel and Senspa is a luxury 4 star spa hotel set in the heart of the beautiful New Forest. This highly commended hotel has been voted Hotel Spa of the Year by the British Beauty Awards and awarded Gold by the Green Business Tourism Scheme. With three restaurants, there is plenty to choose from - whether you prefer fine dining in our two AA rosette Manor Restaurant, a relaxed atmosphere in Blaireaus French Bistro or want to enjoy authentic Thai cuisine in the Zen Garden Restaurant. ... more less
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