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“A brilliant Break”

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Milsoms Kesgrave Hall
Ranked #1 of 1 Hotels in Kesgrave
Certificate of Excellence
Brackley, United Kingdom
1 review
“A brilliant Break”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 20 October 2013

This was our first stay in a luxury hotel, so I wasn't too sure what to expect. Gen and I have spent many nights in business hotels where we are all treated as "fodder" or "punters" so it was going to be interesting to see how things differed. Firstly, the entrance drive and grounds were impressive and turning the corner to see the hall for the first time was wonderful. Plenty of parking near the front door. On arrival, into a lovely reception, we were met by a member of staff who stood up from her desk and walked over to greet us with a big smile. We were shown to our room which was fabulous. the bathroom was huge! Contemporary but still with character, original art on the walls, very clean and comfortable. Our first evening meal was superb, prompt but not rushed. Staff were friendly and relaxed, nothing seemed to be too much trouble. At the bar the staff were also more than helpful. We stayed two nights, breakfast was excellent and our second evening meal was also fantastic. Nothing more to be said, Highly recommended.

  • Stayed September 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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    • Sleep Quality
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    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
Thank vincentgibbs
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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492 reviews from our community

Traveller rating
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    37
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    4
See reviews for
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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (108)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Any
English first
felixstowe
2 reviews
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 16 October 2013

We enjoyed the perfect one night stay in one of the superior rooms and took advantage of lunch dinner and a room service breakfast
Wonderful attentive service complimented this experience and have no hesitation in recommending the hotel and restaurant to those wishing to feel pampered without hassle

Room Tip: Go for the superior quality
See more room tips
  • Stayed October 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
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    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
Thank david l
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
London, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
7 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 12 October 2013

Stayed here a few weeks ago with a party. Very impressed with the hotel building and grounds, considerable successful effort has obviously been made to keep it bright and manicured. The staff were polite, professional and friendly. The rooms were exemplary of the luxury standard which the hotel markets at - crisp egyptian cotton, excellent large beds and spacious, attractive rooms. The bar is attractive and comfortable with some great beers and a good wine list.

It is an expensive hotel, but the return value is certainly there and If it were for the hotel alone this would be a five star review. The reason for the three star rating? The restaurant is a confused and pretentious affair with standards well below the rest of the hotel. In fact, were I the manager of this hotel I would be pretty furious at the head chef for undermining the rest of my excellent work.... but only after I had brought pest control in to deal with the swarms of flies in one corner of the restaurant area. It's not very pleasant to have flies landing on you while you are eating, no matter how good the food is. Food and flies don't mix... unless you are a lizard.

Note to manager - Rentokil - regardless of cost.

I don't really know where to start with the kitchen. I was worried when I first read the menu that whoever wrote it didn't know their trade very well. Head chef simply doesn't seem to know what he wants the kitchen to be - conceptually it seems undecided. We have essentially pub grub (curries, steak and chips, fish and chips) sharing space with some pretty aspirational (or pretentious) dishes such as mushroom scotch egg with saag aloo (brave or stupid?) and gourmet burgers with pulled pork. Whether this is a sincereattept to be current, or whether it's just pretentious.. it fails by some distance to deliver good food. Even the basics fail in quality from a menu which is simply far too large and diverse.

Nothing is more embarrassing than a failed attempt at being en vogue, not many things are more disappointing than spending a lot of money on poor food. So it's a bit painful to read a menu with gourmet burgers in a brioche bun and pulled pork, referencing current trends in gastronomy... only to find a dry meatball in a burnt bun with some pulled pork indiscernable from wet cardboard. Neither was it just one dish, it was pretty much all of them. A watery, insipid curry with a 'naan' thick and stodgy like an english mufffin... A fish of the day (bream?) overseasoned and drowning in an oily grave of clarified butter.. The duck breast was cooked beyond flavour and cook honestly have been animal red and dead. If you're going to serve whitebait with a tartar sauce (prosaic but delicious) why do you not make your own fresh and vibrant tartar sauce? Instead of emptying sachets of heinz tartar sauce into a ramekin?... you didn't do that?.. then why did it taste like that?

It's a large open kitchen with a spacious, busy restaurant full of relatively high-spending people. Once you've solved your fly problem you have all of the ingredients for carving a brilliant reputation well beyond Ipswich. But you have to get that menu sorted and brings somebody in who can run a kitchen, because right now it's all wrong - the concept is muddled, the chef is inept, and it's clear from the small things (burned brioche) that the kitchen staff aren't trained adequately.


Really good cheeseboard - but too little too late... especially as the breakfast was also dry and spartan.

So, in short - a really well run hotel in a beautiful building is let down terribly by a clear lack of vision and expertise in the kitchen.

  • Stayed September 2013, travelled with friends
    • Value
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Helpful?
2 Thank BestServedCol
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Colchester, Essex
Level Contributor
18 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 13 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 3 October 2013

Stayed here with my husband last week. Absolutely perfect - nothing was too much trouble. Staff were very friendly, room was lovely and food was absolutely excellent. My husband said it was the best cooked breakfast he had eaten for years! Very relaxing break. Thank you.

  • Stayed September 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank dempsey01
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Leicester
Level Contributor
15 reviews
9 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 1 October 2013

We spent the day in Suffolk with family then headed to Kesgrave Hall with 3 kids in tow - stayed the night and then headed to Southwold on Sunday.

My other half and I are convinced that it was the easiest and most relaxed kids hotel stay we have ever experienced. We had room 18 and 19 which are beautiful, spacious and the interconnecting rooms gave the elder two space - plus they were excited at having a mini-bar to themselves - fully loaded with soft drinks [great attention to detail] which we learned were all complimentary!

We had dinner in the restaurant [which was bustling and vibrant] experiencing great service and perfect timing [essential when dealing with a 10, 7 and 2 Yr old at the end of a day of family and travelling - a great nights sleep - I escaped for a run on Sunday morning along the lanes before we all had breakfast.

The kids then rolled down the hills [getting wet on the grass] whilst we packed the car and headed to the coast which was only about a 35 minute drive away.

The staff were outstanding. The rooms are just brilliant - excellent design and execution. The food was perfect - probably the freshest salmon we have ever eaten - 'melted like butter' according Kerry.

A great hotel and a great product.

Room Tip: If you have kids, ask for 18 and 19 which are just away from the main building across a courtyard...
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  • Stayed September 2013, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
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    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank DanBarber74
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Brentwood, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
6 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 22 September 2013

Many nice touches like the grounds, food and bar staff, room sizes. Staff were friendly and helpful but annoyingly our wait between starter and main course in the restaurant was almost an hour! Food was super though so credit due to the kitchen who can be seen working their socks off! Staff were apologetic but having to ask where your food is doesn't feel nice! Room was nice inside but with a dog we were put in room near restaurant with frequent passing walkers which disturbed the dog (and therefore us) late at night. All in all I would stay here again. The food was exceptional and it has a nice peaceful country feel to it. The staff are trying and the place is very close to being perfect.

  • Stayed September 2013
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank HRH200989
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Southampton, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
6 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 14 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 17 September 2013

So for the basics... The hotel sits within lovely grounds, the building itself has plenty of charm versus your typical new build yet marries this with a modern contemporary style that for me works perfectly. The bedrooms are clean, show no signs of wear and beautifully appointed with high quality fixtures (eg Bose radio/CD/Alarm). Overall the hotel would get a good rating just for its warmth and cleanliness.
However, 2 things set the Kesgrave apart from the regular hotels in my mind (have also stayed in the nearby Seckford Hall which doesn't come close). Firstly, the quality of dining, both breakfast and evening is quite clearly good restaurant quality, to the extent that I suspect the hotel does more business as a restaurant than as a hotel.
Secondly, the service and attention from the staff has been absolutely outstanding in my most recent stay.... Perhaps not everyone's choice but I was staying on business when there happened to be a sporting event that a colleague and I wanted to watch. With barely an ask of 'is there anywhere we can watch abc other than our rooms' the staff made available a function room with television, set us up with chairs and then continued to bring menu's, drinks, table to eat from and all courses of our evening meal so we could spend the evening enjoying our sport - interspersed with chat and banter from all the staff including the chef who came to check on things as the evening drew to a close.... In all my years of travel, both business and personal, I can't recall anyone going to these lengths to make sure we had a good evening. As the title says, absolutely outstanding service.

  • Stayed September 2013, travelled on business
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank CD2727
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Milsoms Kesgrave Hall

Property: Milsoms Kesgrave Hall
Address: Kesgrave Hall Hall Road, Kesgrave IP5 2PU, England
Region: United Kingdom > England > East Anglia > Suffolk > Kesgrave
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Suites Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 1 Hotels in Kesgrave
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££
Hotel Class:4 star — Milsoms Kesgrave Hall 4*
Number of rooms: 23
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Please note we do not reply to any comments posted. Please contact us directly if you wish to discuss your experience further. A superb joint venture between Milsom Hotels and Hills Group.The bistro restaurant has everything you would expect, inventive food alongside classics such as the delightful fish and chips, a buzzing but relaxed atmosphere and wonderful service from a friendly and professional team. Although you cannot book at Kesgrave Hall it is open all day! So you can arrive when you choose.The 'stay' part of eat, drink, stay (our milsoms mantra!) Could not be any more enjoyable. The Principal suites, whilst lavish and grand, are competitively priced and all bedrooms are beautifully designed and fully equipped with the very latest TVs and MP3 players. The bathroom products are lovely too! ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Milsom`s Kesgrave Hall Hotel Kesgrave
Milsoms Hotel Kesgrave
Milsoms Kesgrave Hall Ipswich

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