We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

“A mature hotel”

Best prices for -
Check In dd/mm/yyyy Check Out dd/mm/yyyy
Prices are for 1 room, 2 adults
Show Prices
Compare best prices from top travel sites
and 3 more sites!
University Arms Cambridge
Ranked #29 of 36 Hotels in Cambridge
Reviewed 12 October 2013

We stay here often, the place has seen better days, the older lift seems to have a mind of its own but the staff are friendly, rooms are comfortable, the breakfast is good and the location is first class.

Room Tip: The rooms over the main street can be noisy if the bars there are busy.
See more room tips
  • Stayed: October 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
2  Thank RCGilfillan
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Matthew M, Manager at University Arms Cambridge, responded to this reviewResponded 17 October 2013

Dear RCGilfillan,

Thank you for taking the time to review us following your recent visit. I am delighted that you found our teams friendly as always, your room comfortable and breakfast good.

I look forward to the opportunity of welcoming you back to the University Arms in the near future.

Thank you again for your review.

Best wishes,

Matthew

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Write a Review
Reviews (914)
Traveller rating
Traveller type
Time of year
Language
  • More languages

191 - 197 of 914 reviews

Reviewed 11 October 2013

If you have bad luck to have a room on the street side you will have trouble sleeping due to the noise. I stayed in a rather grand old room on the back. The floor was not even, I had the feeling I was sinking in some points. The bathroom was old and elevated off the floor of the bedroom.

Breakfast was not bad, but average. The only upside is that it is in town centre.

Room Tip: Always get one on the back side (facing the Green)
See more room tips
  • Stayed: January 2013, travelled on business
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
1  Thank Aarnoud
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Matthew M, Manager at University Arms Cambridge, responded to this reviewResponded 17 October 2013

Dear Aarnoud,

Thank you for recent review. I am pleased that you enjoyed our central location and you where allocated a room over Parkers Piece facing the Green.

Yes, I agree that some areas of our hotel require updating and I am please to confirm that plans for this are already well underway.

Thank you again for you post.

Best wishes,

Matthew

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 10 October 2013

What can I say. Firstly, they had a fire a few days before our visit. This is no excuse for any of the points I am going to make. The room was shabby. The carpet was taped at the entrance to the bathroom. The latter was in very poor condition, the tiles were mouldy, dirty and cracked. The sink was badly cracked and he bathroom door was chipped.the air conditioning cod not be put on and this was a result of the fire. This should have been explained to us and the room rate reduced. Everything about the room was tired and demonstrated lack of care or lack of money.
The same can be said for the rest of the hotel. Next to our room there was an alcove in the wall, goodness knows why. This was dirty and two used dinner plates remained there for the duration of our stay. Various other items were dotted about and no member of staff bothered to remove them.
The hotel falls way behind in just about every aspect. I think the point is that it is still trying to be what it once was, a very grand hotel. It isn't and it shouldn't be charging prices as if it is. All the shortcomings would be ok if they were reflected in the price. You come away feeling ripped off.
Good things- bed comfortable, nice television ( why not put it on the wall?), lobby very impressive and friendly staff . Wish I could say more good things.

Stayed: October 2013, travelled as a couple
2  Thank ruthfrances
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Matthew M, Manager at University Arms Cambridge, responded to this reviewResponded 17 October 2013

Dear ruthfrances,

Thank for or your recent review. I am pleased that you found your bed comfortable, lobby impressive and our teams helpful and friendly.

I was sorry to learn that you let down by your overall room standard, however, we feel that this is reflective in the competitive rates we offer being in the centre of Cambridge.

I am please to be able to report that that plans for a comprehensive refurbishment programme have recently been submitted to Cambridge Planning Authority and are awaiting approval.

Thank you.

Best wishes,
Matthew

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 8 October 2013

First impression is good but the photo on their website is very misleading. The hotel is actually a new annex built onto the end of the rather grand looking building in the publicity photo. The maintenance at this hotel is extremely poor (see photos). What repairs that were carried out in my room (310) were badly done and there were many repairs which still need doing. In one corner there is definitely mould behind the moulding between the wall and where you put your suitcase; there was no heat in the room. I was first told this was because the heat hadn't yet been turned on this season (hello folks. It's October already) and that many people were complaining that their room was too hot. The next story was more accurate; there'd been a fire and it wasn't safe to put the heating on. So I was given an electric radiator. My main concern is the shoddy repairs and lack of needed repairs. Health and Safety Inspectors need to check this hotel out - and soon.

  • Stayed: October 2013, travelled on business
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
1  Thank Ron1402
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Matthew M, Manager at University Arms Cambridge, responded to this reviewResponded 17 October 2013

Dear Ron 1402,

Thank you for your recent post. I am pleased to be able to report that plans for a comprehensive refurbishment programme have recently been submitted to Cambridge Planning Authority and we are imminently awaiting approval. It is true that some of our rooms require updating, however, we feel that is reflective of the competitive room rates we offer.

I would also like to inform you that the University Arms complies with all UK Health and Safety legislation. If we did not comply, we would be unable to operate.

Best wishes,

Matthew

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 6 October 2013

Having seen that the hotel had a fire on Wednesday, bad enough to feature on the BBC news, we telephoned the hotel on Friday 4th October to check - having heard nothing from them - and were assured that all was fine and to quote "we'd notice nothing"! So on Saturday 5th, myself, my husband and my mother set off for our night's stay booked as dinner, bed and breakfast. Upon arrival at 4pm we were told that we did not have a room, the hotel was being safety checked and electricity was being restored to the hotel. We had a choice, either take a chance and see if they could fine rooms, or relocate 1/2 hour outside the city to the holiday Inn. My mother who is 82 was tired after the journey so we waited for 20 minutes and they found two rooms for us in the hotel. It was obvious that the condition of the hotel was poor and not caused by any recent fire, our rooms were acceptable but with work going on all round us, it was noisy. We were then told that the restaurant was out of commission, despite the hotel hosting a charity dinner... a connection one wonders. So our idea of a birthday celebration in a glorious hotel quickly faded, a bit like the glory of the hotel. When we decided to check out and leave my husband went to get our bags from our rooms on the 3rd floor and had to walk down because the lift was out of order. We believe that the hotel is not a safe place to stay, I would question the country council that signed off a reopening after this fire. So if you wish to have a peaceful night's sleep find another hotel in Cambridge - don't book here and they complain as you've been warned not only by us but read the other reviews.

  • Stayed: October 2013, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
4  Thank Sheilaontour
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Matthew M, Manager at University Arms Cambridge, responded to this reviewResponded 17 October 2013

Dear Sheilaontour,

Thank you for taking the time to review us.

I am deeply sorry for the miscommunication over your reservation. If you received word that everything was fine and your reservation would remain unaffected, I can only imagine that you where speaking to Central Reservations rather than anyone on site.

A very large proportion of our rooms still remain out of service even until today as engineers are still working in and around the building ensuring that everything is as it should be, from water pipes to electrics. This process is taking far longer than anyone ever imagined.

In fact, the engineering teams were still working on electrical checks when you arrived, as it had been hoped that a large section of rooms would be available. Unfortunately, this was not the case, however we have already secured accommodation for all of our incoming reservations in and around Cambridge. When it became clear that the engineers would not meet their deadlines, we then started booking out reservations.

Please understand that over graduation Cambridge is extremely busy and if we could have secured city centre accommodation for you we would have done so.

In reference to the hotel not being safe, I am grateful for the opportunity of pointing out that local authorities reopened the hotel for business the very next day! This would and could not have been achieved without them being totally satisfied that the University Arms was a totally safe a secure environment.

Sheilaontour, I understand your frustrations but, please understand that we did everything possible to help and accommodate you. Sorry that in spite of everything this could not be achieved.

Best wishes

Matthew

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 5 October 2013

We were staying here with two sets of friends to attend a function and had booked for two nights. The Hotel is located just a few minutes walk from zillions of restaurants, the main shopping area and the colleges. Sadly that is the only shining light!
The food is ok. Not fantastic, just ok. We had a pre-arranged meal on the Friday night and although the starter and dessert were quite nice, the main course looked like it had been 'keeping warm' for a good hour. The veg were crinkly and crispy and dried out and what was supposed to be a wine jus for our chicken breast tasted like bovril or at best a stock cube. We ordered two bottles of wine which arrived at our table just as we finished the last mouthful of our main course! Not Good.
The one thing I can almost guarantee about this hotel is that you WILL NOT get a peaceful nights sleep. I can honestly say that I have never ever stayed in a noisier hotel room than here, and that includes some located at airports. The hotel sits aside a public park and this also appears to be the main thoroughfare for the 1000's of late night revellers. There was a constant noise all evening but this really peaked around 3am when most of the towns nightclubs and bars started to close. I say started because this stream of shouting, swearing, urinating mob, continued to stream past our room window until 4:40.
We did of course complain to the management but all they could do was to offer to call the police. We asked to be moved but following a fire at the hotel earlier in the week they had fewer rooms available so this was not possible. However, they did offer ear plugs. Looking over other reviews on this hotel, I see this is a common problem.
If you need any sleep at all, this is NOT for you. It certainly isn't for me ever again even if they offered me a free week.

As I write this, all I can think about (with dread) is the lack of sleep I know I will have tonight (Saturday).

  • Stayed: October 2013, travelled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
1  Thank dumbo56
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Matthew M, Manager at University Arms Cambridge, responded to this reviewResponded 17 October 2013

Dear Dumbo56,

Thank you for taking the time to post your review, despite your lack of sleep on the morning of the 5th.

You have been incredibly frank if not a little sarcastic in your review, so you wouldn’t at all take offence if I reply in the same way.

Your function for 40 people was booked as a private banquet; this information did not appear to be relayed to the people dining as it appeared to be made up of numerous smaller groups which I assume you were apart of.

The times for sitting and the food arriving did not match any information that we had. You infer that our service delivery was slow and that your wine took a long time to arrive. Well, I feel the need to point out respectively that should numerous smaller groups opt for arriving at different times and your event organiser instructs us to keep to the pre arranged serving times then this is exactly what we will do. I also feel the need to point out the difference between a banquet and a restaurant, but I don’t want to risk sounding obtuse.

You also made the sarcastic jibe in relation to having to wait too long for your wine. I am grateful to state that during a banquet, wines are ordinarily pre ordered and this is the information that we had before hand and that no wine orders would be taken at the tables. This would appear to be confusing between you and your booker. Nevertheless, we always oblige and always help to serve. So please forgive it taking a little over 10 minutes for us to serve the bottle of wine from our cellar to your function room. You also make an inference that our main course looked like it was kept warm for over an hour. I find such statement ludicrous and maybe even mildly offensive.

I also note your sarcastic remarks in relation to on street noise; well I must point out our city centre location and being over graduation, this is something to be expected.

I note that you neglect to mention that my teams in an effort to help you when it became clear we could not move your bedroom on the second night, due to in no small part to having our room inventory severely limited due to the recent fire. My team offered to book you in alternative accommodation and adsorb the additional cost involved! But it become clear all you wanted is your room rate discount, this was agreed with my Front of House Manager. It is interesting that once again you have neglected to mention it.

I would like to suggest that your review was written in sarcasm and spite. At no point do I feel that you have chosen to write a fair and balanced report of your experiences here at the University Arms.

I would like to take this opportunity to wish you the very best of luck with your reviews in the future. It is my sincerest wish you become more practiced, offering a more balanced and helpful critique for your fellow travellers in keeping of the spirit of Tripadvisor.


Matthew

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 3 October 2013

It was quite the place when I was an undergrad and behind the new facade there is found the remains of the day... grand ballroom, gentle mans club feel in the bar, ancient lift, and also ancient plumbing in the bathrooms. I had a soak in the tub on arrival after a transatlantic flight because I couldn't get the shower to work. It seems neither could the maintenance guy who came in the morning. The more I looked the more like Faulty Towers. I half expected Manuel to appear! but he didn't and neither did I see a Bell man to assist with luggage. It was a tortuous route to our room too. We overlooked the green where a Fair Ground was being set up for week end festivities. Looking up from the bed we saw the wall paper peeling off the ceiling and from the on everything looked worse the more we looked. I am glad to read they are undertaking a refurbishment soon. It's location is its best attribute even though you have to be careful how you approach the entrance. Our sat nav took us down a nearby dead end street which was somewhat problematic.
We had booked on line through top secret hotels and the star ratings definitely were misleading. I am glad not to have paid full price. I rarely mark down a place but can't give this a higher rating this time.
The staff we met had limited English. Service was slow in the bar, and confusion existed in the restaurant with the servers having a different specials list than the chef. What we eventually were presented with was a fried pork chop over boiled rice. Not what we would have ordered or wanted to eat. We didn't stay the second night, just cut our losses and went to a college guest room which happily had been re-decorated since our days there. Let's hope this grand old hotel makes a come back soon.

Stayed: September 2013, travelled as a couple
1  Thank palmpirate
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Matthew M, Manager at University Arms Cambridge, responded to this reviewResponded 16 October 2013

Dear PalmPirate,

Thank you for taking the time to post your recent review, I am sorry to learn that you experienced difficulties with the shower and I am pleased to see our maintenance team was responsive.

With relation with your comments to overall room décor, it is true that some areas of our room inventory require updating and as you quite rightly point out these plans are well underway. More-over we feel that the above is reflective of the room tariffs we charge and our prices are matched accordingly.

I must confess I am slightly confused with your remarks about my teams ‘limited English’. Cambridge being a multicultural city and naturally our staff intake are reflective of this diversity, but I would not say that any of my team would have ‘limited English’.

Thank you again for your kind remarks,

Matthew Morgan

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Hotels you might also like...
Travellers also viewed these Cambridge hotels
0.2 mi away
Hilton Cambridge City Centre
0.1 mi away
Regent Hotel
Regent Hotel
#6 of 36 in Cambridge
438 reviews
0.2 mi away
The Gonville Hotel
The Gonville Hotel
#2 of 36 in Cambridge
1,841 reviews
Show Prices
Show Prices
Show Prices
0.4 mi away
Doubletree by Hilton Cambridge City Centre
0.3 mi away
Hotel du Vin Cambridge
Hotel du Vin Cambridge
#14 of 36 in Cambridge
922 reviews
0.4 mi away
Royal Cambridge Hotel
Royal Cambridge Hotel
#18 of 36 in Cambridge
598 reviews
Show Prices
Show Prices
Show Prices

Been to University Arms Cambridge? Share your experiences!

Write a Review Add Photos & Videos

Additional Information about University Arms Cambridge

Address: Regent Street, Cambridge CB2 1AD, England
Region: United Kingdom > England > Cambridgeshire > Cambridge
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Centre with Internet Access Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Restaurant Room Service Suites Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#10 Luxury Hotel in Cambridge
Price Range: £61 - £379 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4 star — University Arms Cambridge 4*
Number of rooms: 192
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
In the heart of medieval Cambridge, set back from the hustle and bustle of the town and bathed in green lawn lies this rather special historic hotel. It’s an education in quirky British charm and is famous for its hospitality, not to mention its guests over the years from the Beatles to the Krays. Luxurious rooms full of character await, spiral staircases and of course all of Cambridge’s attractions right on your marble doorstep. Take a punt on University Arms and you won’t be disappointed. ... more   less 
Reservation Options:
TripAdvisor is proud to partner with TripOnline SA, Ebookers, Cancelon, Evoline ltd and HotelQuickly so you can book your University Arms Cambridge reservations with confidence. We help millions of travellers each month to find the perfect hotel for both holiday and business trips, always with the best discounts and special offers.
Also Known As:
Hotel De Vere University Arms

Is This Your TripAdvisor Listing?

Own or manage this property? Claim your listing for free to respond to reviews, update your profile and much more.

Claim Your Listing