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“Three day stay for a wedding in the local area”

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Old Swan & Minster Mill
Ranked #1 of 1 Hotels in Minster Lovell
Certificate of Excellence
GreenLeadersBronze level
Egham, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
12 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
“Three day stay for a wedding in the local area”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 2 June 2014

A delightful setting on the banks of the river - we were a family with an 18 month old "toddler" visiting the area for a Friday wedding. The allocated rooms were in the Mill accommodation. These were well furnished, spotless and available for occupancy. However one of the two rooms was decidedly "cosy" - and without too much storage space. For an overnight stay these would be fine but as we were there for three nights (with wedding clothes) it resulted in empty suitcases being returned to the car and constant re-shuffling of items in the room.
Meals (we had two evening meals) were excellent in service and presentation and the breakfasts were marvellous. Almost without question the reception, waiting and bar staff were professional - being both attentive and efficient. The down side of our stay was a very noisy / "lively" wedding that took place on the Saturday of our stay. We had rooms very close to the main evening area being used and we were woken up (having managed to finally get to sleep over the disco noise) at 1.00am ish as the revelers returned to their rooms (unfortunately near ours) without too much consideration for others - including our toddler grandson who was woken! When I mentioned this to the Hotel management the next morning I was offered an apology - but was not really satisfied with the answer when I asked why guests not attending the wedding were not allocated rooms further from the Wedding party venue. Our only two disappointments of the visit - the disturbance of the noise and the lack of pre-planning for our booking - made 6 months prior to the visit.

Room Tip: Not rooms 102 - 116 (we were 107 and 108) if there is a wedding function going into the evening.
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  • Stayed May 2014, travelled with family
    • Value
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    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Review collected in partnership with this hotel

Helpful?
Thank Christopherpauls
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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1,710 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    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 (497)
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English first
Maastricht, Limburg, Netherlands
Level Contributor
14 reviews
12 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 11 helpful votes
2 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 31 May 2014

Stayed 3 nights. Two couples. Most rooms are located in the Minster Mill building. This used to be a modern conference centre. The rooms are very small, designed for single use. The new owners have covered this modern building with old bricks and natural stones to let it look like an historic building. Funny. Beds are small (width 1.40 m) , mattresses worn out, patched up with a synthetic layer. Rised with a stabbing pain in my back. For the other nights I'v put the ironing board under the mattress. Still many conferences going on. One night they had a very noisy party in the room next door. Couldn't sleep until 02:30! No night watchman. Restaurant in the Old Swan pub at the other side of the road (Be careful when crossing!). Traditional pub food, not very special. Expensive. Breakfast ok. Spa poor.
Very attractive location, very nice terrace next to Old Swan. Wanted to go for some fly fishing in crossing river, but unfortunately the water wasn't clear enough for dry fly fishing. (Pollution?)

Room Tip: Make sure they don't put you in a double room, just big enough for single use.
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  • Stayed May 2014, travelled with friends
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Helpful?
2 Thank Hugo B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
GMOldSwanMinsterMill, General Manager at Old Swan & Minster Mill, responded to this review, 2 June 2014
Thank you for your review and on behalf of our Chairman, Lana de Savary, and all the team here at the Old Swan & Minster Mill, I'd like to say just how sorry and disappointed we were that your stay was so poor. The comments you've made are contrary to everything we try to deliver and are so opposite to what our guests generally tell us.

However, we must "take the rough with the smooth" and address your concerns. Our business is about a good night's sleep and we invest hugely in this. If there is ever a mattress, which needs replacing, it will be done and when so many of our guests particularly point out the high quality of comfort, it's disappointing that we didn't know at the time to rectify your concerns.

I should like to put you right that the fabric of all the buildings, which make up the Old Swan & Minster Mill are both original and genuine. It is true that the Minster Mill buildings have had additions but these in fact won architectural awards for their character and design of their time. Equally, we elected to install double beds into all of our bedrooms with a minimum of 1.5m widths, as we felt that this was more appropriate for our guests.

Our "Inn on the River" caters for many different types of guest and largely everyone gets along fine. From time to time, we need to manage any guests who become more boisterous, and the staff are very good at this. I must assure you that we have staff on duty at all times and throughout the night, so it's sad that the noise you suffered was not noticed and dealt with at the time.

Finally, your comment about fly fishing on the River Windrush is correct, in so much as the river is a chalkstream and therefore cloudy but wholly incorrect with regard to any possible pollution. If there were any pollution, the Environment Agency would be on to it immediately. The River Windrush is cloudy because of the chalk base and our fishing instructor, Angus Campbell, is very proud of the fact that this tests the expertise of the fisherman far more than other competitive and clearer rivers.

I hope that I have addressed your concerns and, once again, I am very sorry that you did not enjoy your visit to our corner of the Cotswolds. Maybe on your next visit, you might like to enjoy a room in the Old Swan, which was frequented by King Richard III back in the 15th Century?

Best wishes

Patrick Jones
General Manager
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
1 review
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 30 May 2014

We had an excellent time during our recent family stay to celebrate my birthday. The inter connecting rooms were great for our two children and us with plenty of room inside and in the conservatory, which the kids loved, and made a useful boot room in the wet weather we had! We made full use of the hotel grounds exploring the many bridges over the river and tributaries, playing chess and croquet and the barn with table tennis was a big hit also. Sadly it was too wet for tennis but we intend to come back in the sunshine soon. The staff were friendly and accommodate children well and the food was excellent. We are looking forward to trying the sister hotel in Devon!

  • Stayed May 2014
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank ElaineJohnstone
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
1 review
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 30 May 2014

This was an unforgettable experience. From the grounds of the hotel itself to all the walking trails; everything is simply beautiful. Our room was very nice. The window opened to the small court yard with the water fountain. The restaurant at the Old Swan served great food and drinks. Great wine and beer. The walk to the nearby St. Kenelm's church, the ruins of Minster Lovell Hall, all the way to Crawley... enchanting.
We were in Crawley when rain started pouring down. No worries; a quick call to the Old Swan front desk and voila; a taxi showed up in 5 minutes to take us back to the hotel.
To sum it up, one of our best travel experiences ever.

Room Tip: We stayed on the Old Swan side which was great. I am sure the Minster Mill part is very nice. Overal...
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  • Stayed May 2014, travelled as a couple
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Review collected in partnership with this hotel

Helpful?
Thank Harach D
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
London, UK
Level Contributor
176 reviews
122 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 272 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 30 May 2014

We stayed on their Sunday sleepover deal (valid on long weekends!) for one night in May. This includes cream tea, breakfast, newspaper, accommodation and, most important, a late 2pm checkout. On arrival it is like a picture postcard, with the most stunning gardens I have seen in a good while, and a charming checkin. The delightful woman who manages the whole operation is charming and always available to ensure smooth running, and the staff seem well picked and well trained (with one exception).
Our room was in the Minster Mill section, and to be honest we would opt to stay there rather than the Old Swan on our next stay also. Whilst all food is served in the Old Swan, the gardens and river windrush in the Mill section are quieter and prettier. The room (103) was nicely redecorated, although the bathroom could do with an update. It was clean however (with the exception of the area under the sink which was easily accessible through cupboard doors, and really does need some urgent attention!).
The dinner was good quality food, and our pacing was fine, we like not to be rushed between courses. However our waiter seemed to also be responsible for something across the road at the Mill, and was run slightly ragged. At the end of the meal we needed to go up to the bar to settle up as he had disappeared completely.
Breakfast was superb, served buffet style, but fresh, hot, constantly restocked and very good quality. Scrambled eggs were some of the best I have had in ages.
The only slight downside on the service was the cream tea - this is ordered at the bar, and the man we eventually tracked down to serve us after quite some time of standing around was brusque to the point of rudeness. He also then delivered us the wrong tea with our rather heavy, dry scones.
None of these slight niggles would stop us from returning, and they only really stood out because the remainder of the stay was so good.

Room Tip: We preferred the Mill rooms, all are different, but quiet and nicely redecorated.
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  • Stayed May 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Review collected in partnership with this hotel

Helpful?
Thank tal27
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
North Wales, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 30 May 2014

You pay more for quality, but here at the old swan minster mill you certainly get it. My wife and I stayed for our wedding anniversary and were impressed by the extra personal customer service and the way the restaurant was run. It's the extra attention to detail that makes it all feel special., such as the fresh honeycomb from their bee hives at breakfast along with fresh fruit and berries. It's a special place and for us, lived up to expectations.

  • Stayed May 2014
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank ickleberrys-dad
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Sidcup, United Kingdom
2 reviews
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 30 May 2014

My boyfriend and I have returned from a perfect overnight stay at the Old Swan and Minster Mill. My boyfriend used to come here each year with family when he was younger, so I thought it would be the perfect location to celebrate his 30th Birthday. We had exceptional service from check in to check out. The room I chose was expensive, but well worth every penny for a special treat. We were warmly welcomed at reception, the spa, at dinner and at breakfast the next morning. Food was exceptional at all times and service was attentive and well timed. The grounds were absolutely amazing and well worth the walk. We played a game of croquet in the sun and admired the views in the afternoon. We were given some complimentary champagne at dinner to celebrate the Birthday which we thought was a lovely touch. Everything is well thought about and well executed. We decided we would come back one a year to treat ourselves. We have recommended this place to everyone and cannot stop talking about it!! Cannot wait to return next year....or possibly before!

Room Tip: we had the old swan luxe which was without a doubt the most beautiful room I have ever stayed in.
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  • Stayed May 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Review collected in partnership with this hotel

Helpful?
Thank claire c
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Old Swan & Minster Mill

Property: Old Swan & Minster Mill
Address: Minster Lovell Mill Old Minster Lovell | Cotswolds, Minster Lovell, Witney OX29 0RN, England
Phone Number:
Region: United Kingdom > England > Oxfordshire > Witney > Minster Lovell
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beverage Selection Business Centre with Internet Access Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 1 Hotels in Minster Lovell
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££
Hotel Class:5 star — Old Swan & Minster Mill 5*
Number of rooms: 54
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
An historic Cotswold inn and boutique hotel, the Old Swan & Minster Mill is privately owned by Andrew Brownsword Hotels. Set is the picturesque village of Old Minster alongside the River Windrush, the 15 bedroom inn is stunningly romantic. A further 37 contemporary guest rooms and suites are available in Minster Mill. Family rooms and dog friendly rooms are available. For those looking for more privacy and space, the adjoining newly restored Swan Cottage offers three ensuite bathrooms and a private garden. Dining in the 600-year-old inn feels like stepping back in time with stone floors, beamed ceilings, roaring log fires and delicious gastro-pub food based on fresh, local, seasonal ingredients with a modern twist. Over 65 acres of gardens and 2 miles of fly-fishing on over a mile of the River Windrush ensure a tranquil and picturesque setting. Children have a wealth of activities. There is a tennis court, badminton, gym, croquet, petanque and spa treatments available. Located between the medieval town of Burford and historic market town of Witney, the inn is a short drive from Blenheim Palace and Bicester Designer Shopping Village. Oxford is 20 minutes drive. Nearest train station Charlbury is 15 minutes by taxi. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Old Swan & Minster Mill Hotel Witney
Old Swan And Minster Mill
Old Swan & Minster Mill Minster Lovell, Oxfordshire

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