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“Excellent hotel/spa with great staff. Sadly let down by the food!”

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Norton Park - A QHotel
Ranked #1 of 1 Hotels in Sutton Scotney
Reviewed 15 June 2014 via mobile


This was our second visit to Norton Park. The hotel is set in beautiful surroundings and is easy to find from the M3/A34.

On both visits the standard of service has been excellent, from reception to room service to restaurant/bar staff and the spa. The rooms are also of an excellent standard and clean.

We both had treatments in the spa for the first time during our stay this weekend (shoulder, neck and back massages) and again we were very pleased with the services that were provided. The spa staff were knowledgable and helpful.

Any requests we made were no trouble, for example asking to move tables in the restaurant to sit by the window as it was very hot was no problem. We also emailed ahead to request a room with a bath rather than a shower cubicle and again this was no problem.

The area that lets this hotel down is the food, particularly in the evenings. This time we booked a table in the restaurant at 8.45. Upon arriving for dinner we both remarked at how the room was exactly the same as it was at breakfast and did not feel like a restaurant that reflected the prices charged.

Before we had even had time to select wines, our good order had been taken and our starters arrived almost immediately. These were so obviously pre-prepared, although acceptable. We both ordered steak as our main course costing £26 each. This arrived within minutes of our starters being cleared. The steak itself was well cooked and seasoned but the accompanying chips were bland and undercooked, resembling oven chips and accompanied by a handful of bagged rocket with no other accompaniments. The desert that followed was of a similar standard, a sorbet that was OK, two small scoops but nothing special, and a hazelnut pot that appeared to be a spoonful of Nutella in a butter dish and an accompanying biscuit.

All in, dinner amounted to almost £100 including a couple of glasses of wine each and I don't think the standard of food reflected this. This is not to the detriment of the excellent staff who seemed to be ever present; at breakfast, in the day and serving dinner and drinks in the evening. As always there were several hen parties present and it seemed that the food was targeted more at those on package deals where margins are slim rather than those who are happy to pay a bit more for a good meal.

Breakfast was good and again the service attentive.

We will certainly be back as we enjoy the hotel and spa and it is conveniently located for us but we will look for a local pub or restaurant to dine at in future as the restaurant failed to match the high standards set by the staff and facilities at the hotel.

Tom Lloyd

Stayed: June 2014, travelled as a couple
Thank Tom L
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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1,170 - 1,176 of 2,300 reviews

Reviewed 13 June 2014

Stayed for two nights one before and one after a wedding on Thursday. The drive up to the hotel was lovely and the grounds beautifully kept, so high hopes for the hotel. The receptionist was very friendly and explained our room was up the stairs/lift to the first floor through the glass walkway through the second walkway the up the stairs, have to say that didn't sound too bad but in reality it was quite a hike when you have cases etc for a wedding, at least a 5 minute walk to our room which was at the furthest point away from reception in what is known as "D" block.
The breakfast the first morning was not what I quite expected, the hot breakfast was lacking several items which I and several other guests waited at least 8 minutes for them to be replenish, when they came they were good. They would be much better off using serving domes instead of small dishes for beans etc.
This is the first hotel I have been in where it states in the booklet found in the room that corkage may be charged if alcohol is found in your room. Hilton, Menzies and Marriott Hotels certainly do not state this as between 20 & 32 of us girls from our golf club use these hotels for our weekends away without any problem.
Wine by the bottle is priced for clients on expense accounts the cheapest being £23 per bottle, which in other hotels comes in at about £18.
The cleanliness and comfort of the room was very good, I would have expected a comments card, which I could have filled out, but none was forthcoming.
Overall the experience of this hotel was good but make sure you get a room in "B" block to avoid the hike to the room. Obviously the bulk of the clientele are clients attending conferences on expense accounts, and not people paying for themselves.

Room Tip: B Block and nothing beyond that
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  • Stayed: June 2014, travelled as a couple
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Thank Sue B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Tom186284, General Manager at Norton Park - A QHotel, responded to this reviewResponded 16 June 2014

Thank you for taking the time to write a review following your recent stay. I am glad that you found the grounds, reception and your bedroom to a high standard. The layout of the hotel is due to bedrooms being added on and the planniers would only allow a two story buiding. The plus side is that most bedrooms over look a country setting or lawns in the courtyards. We did have an issue during one breakfast that delayed the hot food being replaced as rapidly as it normally is and I apologise for this. The corkage charge is used as a deterent if guests decide to have a party in a bedroom resulting in disturbing other guests. Our wine prices are determined by local pricing and in line with 4 star competitor pricing.

Thank you again for writing a review.

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Reviewed 13 June 2014

This is the first time my wife and I have used Q Hotels and we will certainly use them again. This hotel was in a lovely setting with a long drive which really added character. The receptionists were all excellent. Strangely enough the highlight was the welcome and explanation of what was available came from Rose when we entered the restaurant for our first breakfast. I have got to say this was the best welcome and service I have ever received from the many hotels that I have stayed at both in the UK and abroad. Rose was equally brilliant when we arrived for our second breakfast and she much deserves this accolade - a real credit to this hotel and her profession. We invited friends to join us for dinner on our second night and we were well attended to by all and especially the young lady from South Africa (sorry I have forgotten her name). The food for breakfast and dinner was excellent. Our room was slightly small but very adequate and very clean. The bed was really comfortable as was the armchair. A fan was provided which was most welcome as both evenings were rather warm but I mustn't complain about our weather. Very convenient for visiting Winchester provided you have got transport. So overall we really enjoyed our stay and next time we are in this area we will certainly book in again. So well recommended as far as we are concerned.

  • Stayed: June 2014, travelled as a couple
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Thank David I
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 11 June 2014

I ended up staying here on my own because of my husband's changed work commitments but I had really been looking forward to my stay following a very stressful few months. Perhaps I shouldn't have gone with such high expectations! I was checked in by Michael - he was probably the best thing about my whole stay! On check in, check out and any dealings I had with him in between he was friendly, professional and accomodating.
The toilet in my room smelled - not fresh. Not pleasant. After a slight hiccup when I was moved to an accessible room with a wet room for the bathroom, I was given an upgraded room - very clean, pleasant and comfortable although on the small side.
The service in the restaurant that evening was really poor. I was seated on a table on the route to the toilet. I was not offered bread to start. The starter and main course were ok but nothing special. I was then ignored for 20 minutes. I finally managed to get someone's attention and ordered what I believe was called a 'fruit slice'. This turned out to be a slab of chocolate cake with a pot of unpleasantly sour berries. (A few disappointments in that meal).
The next morning the paper I had ordered had not arrived. I rang reception at 8am to tell them. At 9am I went to reception to ask again and was told someone had gone to get one. I went out at 11 - no paper yet. When I got back about 3 there was still no paper so I rang again. It finally arrived at about 4.30. Now I know a paper is not a huge deal but I would never normally have one and it is a sign of me being on holiday to have one. Another disappointment in itself, but I was also really disappointed that no one bothered to tell me what was going on after I first raised the issue.
Breakfast on both days was not great. The service was friendly and quick, but on both days the eggs were over cooked, the mushrooms were cold and, in spite of what the menu claimed, there were no whole fruits or coulis and no skimmed milk.
Dinner on the second night was better - better food, better service and a better table.
I couldn't fault the pool area - plenty of loungers, fairly clean and not a bad sized pool for a hotel.
Incidentally, my final disappointment is the fact that, having explained all this in the survey form I was emailed, and asking for someone to contact me, no one has. I have stayed in several hotels and am a member of the breakaway club - my stay at Norton Park seems to suggest that the customer care at this venue does not match the company as a whole. Not recommended.

  • Stayed: May 2014, travelled solo
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1  Thank LondonKinsey
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Tom186284, General Manager at Norton Park - A QHotel, responded to this reviewResponded 12 June 2014

Thank you for taking the time to write a review following your recent stay at Norton Park. I would like to apologise for the shortfall in standards that you experienced. Their was a delay in recieving guest questionaires but I have responded regarding the issues you raised. I have taken up your comments with the relevent department managers to ensure that thes issues are not repeated in future. We have recently appointed a very experienced Restauarnt & Bars Manager who will have an immediate impact on service and standard levels.

May I apologise again

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Reviewed 10 June 2014

Stayed here for one night on a business trip.

Room was on the small side, but modern, bright and unusually for hotel rooms, well lit. Shower is really strong so a big plus there - my room had no bath. No air con but a fan was provided. Unfortunately, it was too noisy to leave on overnight, but at least I could open the windows which overlooked a quiet garden area.

Room service was acceptable although when ordering burger and fries I would normally expect ketchup/mayo/mustard etc - all I got was Salt 'n' Pepa.

On to the sockets...why is it that the people that design hotel rooms insist on fitting the sockets at a level that means you have to force plugs into them? Stupid (see pic).

Apart from the socket, good hotel.

  • Stayed: June 2014, travelled on business
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1  Thank Quarky68
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 9 June 2014

We had a very pleasnt weekend break . The hotel is set in beautiful grounds and is an ideal location for exploring the lovely surrounding countryside. The staff were all very attentive especially Joanne in the restaurant. We ate our evening meals in the restaurant and they were superb I would recommend the pulled pork and beef wellington. We would definitely stay here again. The spa was closed for maintenance work so there were no girlie weekends. Well done Norton park on training your staff so well

  • Stayed: June 2014, travelled with family
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Thank jlea34
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 4 June 2014

Norton Park is in a very quiet location which we love. We last stayed here 5 years ago and the hotel is showing signs of wear. Service was very slow in the restaurant. It was busy when we stayed and there was a large party there. The evening meals were a little disappointing. We probably won't return.

Room Tip: Many of the rooms are a long way from reception but very quiet.
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  • Stayed: May 2014, travelled as a couple
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Thank Mrsbaz49
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Tom186284, General Manager at Norton Park - A QHotel, responded to this reviewResponded 6 June 2014

Thank you for taking the time to write a review following your recent stay. I apologise that your experience in the restaurant was not up to our normal high level of service & quality. I have recently appointed a new Head Chef and Restaurant and Bar manager who both have a wealth of experience. I expect them to have an immediate impact on the food offering at the hotel. As in all Q hotels we have a scheduled capital refurbishment program scheduled for this year.

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Additional Information about Norton Park - A QHotel

Address: Norton Park | Nr Winchester, Sutton Scotney SO21 3NB, England
Region: United Kingdom > England > Hampshire > Sutton Scotney
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Centre with Internet Access Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 1 Hotels in Sutton Scotney
Price Range: £69 - £125 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4 star — Norton Park - A QHotel 4*
Number of rooms: 166
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
On the outskirts of Winchester, Norton Park is a sumptuous four star hotel blending beautiful contemporary chic with historical elegance all set within 54 acres of peaceful grounds. No matter what your reason for visiting, on business, a family trip or a spa break, the hotel has all the facilities to surpass your expectations. For those visiting on business, be it for a board meeting, a residential conference, training seminar or annual dinner the state-of-the-art facilities are exceptional. Norton Park offers 16 conference and meeting rooms for up to 340 delegates within the main hotel, the Manor House and for something a little different the 17th century Tythe Barn. On the doorstep to all that Hampshire has to offer including historic Winchester with its magnificent cathedral and the coastal cities of Southampton and Portsmouth, Norton Park is an ideal base for a leisure break with family and friends. The hotel has 166 modern bedrooms, a large leisure complex and spa, a great restaurant and beautiful landscaped gardens to stroll around. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Norton Park - a q Hotel Sutton Scotney
Norton Park a Qhotel Winchester
Norton Park - A QHotel Sutton Scotney, Hampshire

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