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The Aviator Hotel
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Reviews (269)
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All reviewsart decocar parkinteresting hotelrooms are finebuffet breakfastan evening meallasagnathis lovely hotelthe british grand prixeasy parkingplenty of hot waterbusiness tripquiet locationstayed one nightvery pleasant staysunday morningtea and coffee
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197 - 202 of 269 reviews
Reviewed 28 July 2013

I had the displeasure of staying at the Aviator while taking part in a flying competition on Sywell airfield. Had I known it had a bad reputation for service I would have avoided it, but as it was very convenient, and wanting to support airfields as I'm a pilot, I thought it would be OK. Here's what I found:

10 mins waiting in reception on checkin, no-one around so we went to the bar and was told someone would be with us - 10 mins later they showed up. We later noticed a sign suggesting this course of action if no-one was in reception, but that wasn't displayed when we arrived.

Keycard for the room had to be reset 5 times in 3 days. After the second occasion we asked the receptionist if this would be repeated and was assured not, but had to happen 3 more times. When mentioning our frustration to the chap behind the desk on 4th occasion, he said 'I bet is it mate' but no apology, tried to blame it on the card being near electronic devices, which unless my buttocks have become electromagnetic, can't be the case, as it was sat on it's own in the back pocket of my jeans. In fact on the second occasion receptionist made it clear it was the system that had stopped it working, not the card, as our checkout date hadn't been updated on the system.

Shower was nice and powerful, but every minute or so pressure would drop right off then it would spray hard with red hot water for a couple of seconds before returning to normal. Definitely dangerous for a child or the elderly who couldn't jump out of the way as fast as I can. I'll be reporting this to the local council, as it's downright dangerous.

Asked for a late checkout so we could catch up on sleep, and had do not disturb hanger on door, but cleaning staff were shrieking and laughing loudly in the corridor, and allowed doors in vicinity to slam shut which woke us up - I had to get up to ask them to be considerate.

While waiting in reception to ask for a late checkout behind two chaps being served by one member of staff, 3 other staff members chatted away while we and another customer were kept waiting. When asking for the late checkout, the receptionist initially declined saying the room was to be let to someone else and had to be cleaned. I asked if she could swap the new guests to a different room, and amazingly she said ok, and let us stay late. Why are guests teaching the staff how a hotel works?

No food on site past lunch on a Sunday.

Wifi supposed to be available in rooms - could only get a signal in the bar area.

When asking the night porter if we could get a cup of tea early one morning before breakfast time, the response was one word - no. He didn't ask if we needed more supplies for the room facilities or tell us when the breakfast bar would open, just said 'no'. I was so taken aback at his attitude to those paying his wages, I didn't even know what to say in reply.

Bulbs in bedside lights too high wattage, so blindingly bright while in bed had to use the table lamp instead, and get out of bed to switch the lights off.

Bath wouldn't drain properly without removing plug entirely - not enough movement in the twisty thing to let the water out.

Speaker in ceiling and knob on wall for music in the bathroom - great idea, but not working.

Loo seat hanging off.

Upsides - Comfy bed, defogging mirror in bathroom helps, plenty of little milk cartons on arrival rather than the usual two which is never enough and decent sized teacups in room.

What a shame that the owners and management can't get their head round looking after guests. I'd have put quite a bit of business their way, had they tried, but I'll make sure my pilot buddies know to give it a wide berth.

We did complain, and was told the owner would consider the complaint and get back to us, but no-one did.

We had the need to stay for a second weekend, but we chose to stay at the Park Inn instead - much nicer, decent service and cheaper too!

Room Tip: Find a different hotel!
  • Stayed: July 2013, travelled as a couple
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3  Thank Regular T
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
MichaelBB539, Owner at The Aviator Hotel, responded to this reviewResponded 30 July 2013

It is company policy that staff should not respond to blackmail or threats of a bad review on Tripadvisor when the customer is clearly trying to reduce or get out of paying their bill for no good reason.

For late checkins when reception is closed there is a sign at reception with instructions how to checkin.

The bedroom key cards are susceptible to corruption by any electronic device, such as computers or mobile phones. Care should be taken to to ensure the card is kept away from such devices otherwise it will require re-coding.

The hotel literature clearly states the kitchen is closed on a Sunday evening as it has been for the last 10 years or more.

The new FREE WIFI system has a constant monitoring device maintained by the service providers. They have informed us the WIFI was working through out the Hotel during the course of your stay. We respectfully suggest you check the settings on your computer.

The published time for the latest check out is midday. The hotel was busy during your stay and chamber maids had to service the bedrooms for the incoming guests. Reception did bend the rules to try and help you.

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Reviewed 11 July 2013

The Aviator Hotel is a fabulous themed hotel that sits right on the actual airfield. The staff are helpful and friendly and the hotel itself clean, attractive and comfortable. The food however is awful with only the breakfast buffet saving it. The lasagne was hard and over microwaved. The duck just foul (get it) and everyone of us staying had some complaint about their food and there were over twenty of us!,,

The hotel is just perfect to stay in but here's a tip, the pub just a mile down the road is much better!

Room Tip: 118-120. Very quiet
  • Stayed: July 2013, travelled on business
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1  Thank Hrdsarah
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
MichaelBB539, Owner at The Aviator Hotel, responded to this reviewResponded 30 July 2013

I am very pleased you enjoyed the hotel.

I am sorry to hear your displeasure with the food. Our head chef has been away convalescing after a minor operation . Unfortunately the executive relief chef brought in to hold "the fort" was not up to our normal high standard.

All our food ingredients are fresh and locally sourced. This appears to present a challenge to most chefs who unfortunately these days have become used to microwaving pre-prepared food.

I am very pleased to inform you that our Head Chef is now back and the food quality has returned to the high standard we expect.

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Reviewed 1 July 2013

Travelling up from Cornwall for a reunion meeting in Northampton, we booked a two-night stay at the Aviator after seeing the website and brochure for the hotel. It all seemed pretty good, with a 3 star rating being the clincher. It was a real surprise when we arrived to find that the Aviator is just a Motel, and no way could be described as a Hotel. The reception was in a separate building to the rooms, and the two girls seemed to be the only available staff.

The room was quite spacious, freshly decorated and clean, and the bed was comfortable if you like the mattress to be very firm indeed, with two thin pillows for each person. There is a bit of a half-hearted thirties "Art Deco" theme to the décor, the modern flat-screen television contrasting with the old-fashioned dresser and very uncomfortable "S-framed" metal chairs. The weather was unseasonably cold, and the room was equally cold, despite a large thermostatically-controlled radiator - cold water in the pipework meant no heat for us. We complained about the lack of heat to the receptionists, but nothing was done, so we were cold for the entire length of our stay.

The bathroom had a tub with shower over, basin and wc, and there was plenty of hot water. A nice feature was a "music service" to the bathroom through a small loudspeaker and rotary selector switch. Shame that it didn't work, though. You need to bring your own shampoo, bath oil or whatever, as the bathroom condiments consisted of a bar of soap only.

Quality-wise we felt that it was a bit better than a Travelodge, but not in the same league as a Premier Inn. Price-wise it was dearer than both (£69 per night, plus extra for breakfast). You pay the same for a full English breakfast as for tea and toast.

You can have an evening meal in the restaurant opposite the bedroom block - the meal we had was better than average, but was dearer than we have become accustomed to here in Cornwall. The staff in the restaurant we friendly and helpful

  • Stayed: May 2013, travelled with friends
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2  Thank Georgio6
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 23 June 2013

It was just a one night trip for us, we slept and gone after a business trip, but it was a little disappointing. We had to get up quite early in the morning to reach our flight from Heathrow, therefore we asked for a "doggy bag" for the morning instead of the breakfast. Sorry we cannot get up so early - was the answer. OK, you don't have to get up then, please do this for us right now (in the evening), and we can take it with us. No, it is also not possible -the answer again. For the simple question why - there was no answer.
THe bed was ok, the room old style, little poor, the floor was very noisy, like in the worst horror you've seen (sorry for the early wake up for the neighbours because of that).
Avoid the place if possible.

  • Stayed: June 2013, travelled on business
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2  Thank AndrasSchmidt
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
The Aviator S, Director of Sales at The Aviator Hotel, responded to this reviewResponded 25 June 2013

I'm afraid we are unable to provide guests with a 'doggy bag' due to Health & Hygiene implications.

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Reviewed 5 June 2013 via mobile

We were there for Aero Expo so it was busy but no one had a clue, staff were clueless. At one stage a German man ordered a beer and the waitress just looked at him and said 'I cant understand you what the hell do you want..' this at a packed bar with his colleagues or clients. Public bathrooms were dirty at times and we had the worst cheese and pickle rolls, gross. there is great asset here but management need to guide staff to deliver a higher standard.

  • Stayed: June 2013
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4  Thank slirishreview
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
MichaelBB539, Owner at The Aviator Hotel, responded to this reviewResponded 30 July 2013

Aero Expo this year was a huge success this year. So much so it took the event organisers by surprise.

This resulted in the Aviator Hotel facilities having to support the lack of facilities,such as toilets, in the event arena.

Each evening after the show closed approx. 500 plus people rushed to bar all at once for a drink as it was gloriously hot weather. This unavoidable caused queues for approx 45 minutes while the bar staff went as fast as they could to serve the customers.

I was very pleased to witness the way our staff upped their game to deal with the rush. One of the problems I saw was that once customers had waited when it was their turn they took awhile to decide what they wanted.

Over 2,000 pints plus wine etc were served each day, so someone knew what they were doing!

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