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The Varsity Hotel & Spa
Ranked #1 of 36 Hotels in Cambridge
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed 21 August 2011

We were meeting old friends in Cambridge as it was a half way point and we saw the Varsity online.
The hotel in reality certainly didn't disappoint and lived up to the very cool images on the website.
The room was just fantastic and we had a view over the beautiful college roof tops.
We didn't want to leave the room and it was harder to leave the hotels roof terrace after pre dinner drinks as the city view from there was jaw dropping.
The brilliant hotel staff recommended where we and our friends should go and we had a great Friday night out.
We all though agreed that we wanted to just get back to the hotel and we all piled into one room.
It was so refreshing to have 24Hr room service with a large food and drink menu instead of the usual nuts and chocolate in a mini bar.
We eventually turned in and the next day had a great breakfast in the hotels restaurant adjacent. It was all over too soon.
We are planning an extended return trip especially as we want to try out the very cool gym and spa.
We can't recommended this very cool boutique hotel enough.

  • Stayed: August 2011, travelled with friends
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2  Thank James C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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2,190 - 2,196 of 2,458 reviews

Reviewed 20 August 2011

We have just returned from an incredible stay at The Varsity - it really is an amazing hotel and spa. It is located in a beautiful spot at the heart of the city and on the river. Beautifully decorated with attentive and lovely staff. Rooms are very well-equipped and the spa and restaurant are perfect.

Faultless! I can't recommend it enough.

  • Stayed: August 2011, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank AnnaKSingapore
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 19 August 2011

Stayed with my girlfriend before I embark on a PhD at Cambridge. Have given up the world of work for four years and the subsequent luxuries I have recently enjoyed, so my other half treated me to a weekend in the city I will be soon slumming it in.

Great service from the entire staff here, the Spanish porter who took my bags up was particularly enthusiastic about the world. Enjoyed a glass of champagne on the stunning roof terrace before having a very good meal in the steakhouse next door.

Room was furnished very well, don`t quite understand the reviewer who thinks furniture was from Ikea, I had solid teak in my room - may be my girlfriend had specially arranged this before I move in to more spartan accommodation. Could have had a slightly bigger shelf in the bathroom, but it was all equipped very well.

Hotel so well situated in the centre of town, so a lot of shopping was done. Used the spa for the jacuzzi and sauna, which was very relaxing. Will be back to the roof as a regular if our summer continues into September - British optimism!

Wou

  • Stayed: August 2011, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank Rob D
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 17 August 2011

Our family of four stayed in two rooms. A Senior Fellows Superking Room and also a Fellows King Room. Our superking room had a handicap bathroom and water would spray on everything in the bathroom...soggy toilet paper every morning!
The furniture was very low quality, what I would expect from a college dorm furnished at IKEA. Twice during our 4 night stay, room cleaning 'missed' our room. We had to call for clean towels and vacate our room at 5 pm the second evening so they could clean up.
What I disliked the most, was the hotel entry. The small entry/reception room had two desk that were usually staffed. However, when you walked into the hotel from sightseeing, or dinner, the receptionists behind the desk would simply look at you without greeting or smiling. I always felt as if I were interrupting their work when I entered the hotel to go to my room. It was a bit uncomfortable.
The hotel was nothing special and I really don't understand the reviewers who claim it is the nicest hotel they have stayed. The rooftop view of the hotel was really the only thing particularly nice....and you can just go there for a drink. Truly not worth the premium rates compared to the other hotels in town.

  • Stayed: July 2011, travelled with family
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4  Thank calaway354
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 16 August 2011

We paid £170 fo ra Graduates room with breakfast and quite frankly it was not worth the money.My heart sank as we entered the cramped reception area-it was not what I had expected.The room was very small and stuffy.Luckily the weather was not too hot because there was no air con on floors 1 and 2! The bathroom was poky with no space to put toiletries and the walls were paper thin.The furniture is not wearing well considering the hotel is less than a year oldYou need to go thro the Spa to get to the restaurant which is not ideal in the rain!.Breakfast was ok but the tables were very close together and bang on 10.30 the food was cleared away!
As stated elsewhere there is no parking on site which is a hassle when you have luggage.
There were some good points:the staff were really nice and helpful and the Roof Terrace was lovely.The location was excellent.
To sum up,you need to pay for one of the more expensive rooms to get the wow factor advertised on the hotel website.I would not stay here again unless I got a really good deal!

Room Tip: Make sure room has aircon
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  • Stayed: August 2011, travelled as a couple
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3  Thank EveGlos_UK
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 15 August 2011

We have just returned from a short break in Cambridge and can honestly say that we have never stayed in such a beautiful hotel. From the moment we arrived, the staff were very polite, friendly and helpful, nothing was too much trouble.
Our room was out of this world, large, modern and very tastefully furnished. The panoramic views over the rooftops of Cambridge was absolutely fantastic and we were able to sit, relax and enjoy the afternoon sun from our own decked balcony.
We dined in the hotel restaurant, The Riverbar Steakhouse and Grill, and can highly recommend the steaks on offer, and the riverside views. Again the staff were very attentive and friendly.
We also visited the hotels' Spa, The Glasshouse, where we experienced the most relaxing treatments in a calming, pleasant environment with professional, experienced beauticians. The perfect rejuvinating treat after a weekend of sight -seeing!
We have stayed at a number of hotels in Cambridge and this one is by far the best, from the enviable location to the helpfulness of the staff, I can't recommend The Varsity highly enough. We will definately be visiting this little treasure again!!

Room Tip: It's worth paying that little bit extra for the top floor views.
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  • Stayed: August 2011, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank debbie p
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 15 August 2011

We stayed at the Varsity Hotel & Spa for 1 night in February 2011. The location is fantastic, down a quiet little road off the main high street, next to the River Cam and opposite Magdalene college.

The hotel staff were friendly and helpful, recommending things to see and do. We arrived early and were told that our room was not ready but we could leave our bags behind reception. On returning a few hours later the room was still not quite ready, the receptionist was very apologetic and organized complimentary pre-dinner drinks for us in the restaurant that evening.

We stayed in a Senior Fellows four-poster room on the top floor of the hotel that offered breathtaking views across Cambridge from its floor to ceiling window. The room itself was spotless, spacious and finished to a very high standard (one of the best we’ve stayed in). The modern four-poster bed was very comfortable and there was no disruptive outside noise.

The spa is next door to the hotel and is finished to the same high standards, but is quite small. Also next door to the hotel is the restaurant (River Bar Steakhouse & Grill) where we had dinner and breakfast overlooking the river. Both were excellent, the steaks were cooked to perfection and the breakfast had a good selection.

Being right in the town centre there is no free car parking. The hotel recommends a car park about 2 minutes walk away however we found this to be quite expensive so instead used the Queen Anne Terrace car park. We found it to be much more sensibly priced, well worth the 10 minute stroll through beautiful Cambridge.

Overall this is a fantastic hotel, finished to a high standard with friendly and helpful staff. Would definitely recommend and like to return.

  • Stayed: February 2011, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank P_Rowberry
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about The Varsity Hotel & Spa

Address: Thompson's Lane, Cambridge CB5 8AQ, England
Phone Number:
Region: United Kingdom > England > Cambridgeshire > Cambridge
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Centre with Internet Access Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Restaurant Room Service Suites
Hotel Style:
#1 Luxury Hotel in Cambridge
#1 Romantic Hotel in Cambridge
#2 Family Hotel in Cambridge
#2 Business Hotel in Cambridge
Price Range: £141 - £370 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4 star — The Varsity Hotel & Spa 4*
Number of rooms: 44
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The Varsity Hotel & Spa is located on the edge of the picturesque River Cam in the heart of Cambridge and just yards from St John's, Trinity and Magdalene College. Ideally situated for punting, shopping, sight-seeing and nightlife, The Varsity hotel guests are truly immersed in the culture and charm of Cambridge life from the moment they arrive. Recharge in the wonderful Elemis spa before soaking up the beautiful skyline with drinks on the hotel's roof terrace,afternoon tea or dinner in the Six Panoramic Bar & Restaurant. Alternatively, guests can indulge in a hearty meal in the River Bar Steakhouse & Grill. Valet parking available from 7 am to 10 pm for hotel's guests. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
The Varsity Hotel And Spa
The Varsity Hotel Cambridge

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