We chose this hotel as we were up for the Edinburg festival and have friends in Falkirk. The hotel is 5 mins by taxi to Polmont station, and it is 25 mins by train to Edinburgh, so for this purpose the hotel fitted the bill. There is even a free phone to call Bruce's Taxis in the hotel bar, and it took less than 5 mins for them to arrive each time.
Anyway, about the hotel. I came away feeling that this could be a good hotel, if they spent a bit of money on the rooms, gave the staff some training and made a few treaks. However, as it is, it is a disappointment. To start with, when you check in, there is no reception. You have to wander into the bar and acost somebody who will give you a room key and point you in the vague direction of your room. On check in, we were asked if we were part of the wedding party that was going on later that day and we told them we were not. We were told at that point that the bar closed at 11 so we shouldn't be troubled.
There is a lift to the first floor, so no problem getting bags upstairs. On entering the rooms you can't help but feel underwhelmed. As soon as you enter there is a kind of glass partitioned area which is taken up by a huge glass desk that acts as a dressing table? There is also a rack to hang clothes on. All looks like it was done on the cheap, which is the general theme for the rooms. The bed is not comfortable, it seems to be a very cheap mattress. The carpets seem like they have seen better days. There is a HUGE picture on the wall that dominates the room, but it is not pleasant. The kettle has to be placed on the floor to boil it, but at least the biscuits they provide with the coffee facilities are good.
We actually stayed in two different rooms while were were there. On the first night we were disturbed by the wedding party, a large number of whom were loitering outside the main door, which was directly outside our room. On complaining to the hotel, we were informed that the party would be going on until 2, but they would turn the music down and ask the people to not stand outside, but neither happened. In fairness, they did allow us to move to another room and gave us a reduction on the first night, but as it was we would have needed to change rooms anyway. The room we were in had a recently refurbished bathroom. The problem with this was that the screen and shower tray were too small, and water ran all the way around the room and out of the bathroom door, making the carpet in the entrance to the room wet. We obviously weren't the first people this had happened to as when we had arrived we had noticed that the carpet was damp. Still, this did not stop the staff from hurrying us out of the room the day we were being switched to another, as they wanted to get it ready for someone else to stay in! So it is OK to let hotel guests stay in rooms with damp carpet???? Surely the right thing would be to take the room out of service until it was fixed. One final point on the bathroom - there isn't anywhere to put anything. I mean, not one place to put a wash bag, stand your toothpaste, nothing. The hotel place the free shower gels on the toilet cistern. A shelf would be really useful so you don't have to keep walking back and fore to the bedroom when you are getting ready.
Breakfast is an area where the hotel almost gets is right. There are basically two choices though, a full cooked breakfast, or a breakfast bap. Good job I'm not vegetarian as they don't realy cater for those. The food itself was good. But some days they let you sit anywhere, other days they move you once you have sat down to where they want you. They are understaffed as one person rushs around like a crazy person taking orders and trying to replenish the buffet. As a result, you have to flag them down to actually place you order, while other people stop them to ask for items on the buffet to be replenished. They frequently ran out of juice, milk, coffee, sugar, etc. And if you want more choice, stay on a night when they have a large wedding party as they put out a greater range of cereals then. Otherwise they cut it down to a bare minimum.
We did use the bar once, as we were looking for a quick snack to keep us going until we went out for a meal later that evening. Despite there being several members of staff standing around, I had to wait sometime before the barman came back and I could order. I asked about a menu, and was pointed to the other side of the bar to go and get it myself. As it was, they didn't do any small meals and the only choice was to go for a two course meal. We ended up going to the pub across the road that was attached to the Premier Inn.
With a bit of redecoration and some staff training, this could be a nice hotel. As it is, I wouldn't recommend staying here.
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- Also Known As:
- Beancross Hotel Polmont, Scotland