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“Just like staying with the family”

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Victoria Bed and Breakfast
Ranked #13 of 121 Cambridge B&B and Inns
Certificate of Excellence
Geneva, Switzerland
Level Contributor
108 reviews
27 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 43 helpful votes
“Just like staying with the family”
Reviewed 29 April 2013

It is nineteen years since the first of our sons began his studies in Cambridge, our younger one has now completed his doctorate, married a fellow Cambridge doctor and, still working sometimes in the University, with a brand new family. We tried lots of B & Bs and Cambridge hotels in the early years and were often disappointed by the rooms, the lack of parking, the poor food, the high price and so on. Finding Victoria Guest House was a brilliant stroke of good fortune and we have been staying there regularly for at least ten years. It really is like staying with the family. We find the price very reasonable compared with, for example, the University Arms which was impersonal and slightly grubby or the Ashfield, which was far more expensive and produced nothing like Duncan and Emma's fabulous breakfast (a sneaky tip - Duncan will add fried bread to the copious and tasty menu if you twist his arm!) Indeed, the rooms are small, but, over the years, we have probably stayed in all of them and found the beds comfortable, the decor being regularly updated with lovely bright and fresh linen, and the hospitality astonishing. How can they bear to greet another twenty or so people every day and retain their warm welcome and superb service? We have always found the rooms spotlessly clean and appreciated all the helpul advice and the tea, coffee and tasty biscuits that are regularly renewed. I have just read the other reviews and was rather astonished by the third - there is a kettle full of boiled water in every room and the en-suite facilities certainly allow even my fairly large husband to shower comfotably. The fact that parking is always available right in front of 55/57 Arbury Road or just round the corner is yet another plus. Carol E's review more adequately reflects our experience as, when Duncan and Emma had no room for one of our family after my son's wedding, they found a nearby room for her and invited her to join us all for breakfast the following day. If that doesn't earn five stars, I don't know what does.

Room Tip: The smaller rooms are slightly cheaper but perfectly adequate.
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  • Stayed April 2013, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
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Helpful?
Thank Shirley C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
CambridgeDuncan, Owner at Victoria Bed and Breakfast, responded to this review, 7 May 2013
Thank you so much for the lovely comments, much appreciated, it was lovely seeing you again. Duncan's waistline will increase too if he does the fried bread - he does love it! ;-) Kind regards Emma & Duncan
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164 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Sleep Quality
  • Location
  • Rooms
  • Service
  • Value
  • Cleanliness
Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (22)
Date | Rating
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English first
Blackpool, United Kingdom
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed 20 April 2013

When our daughter came to study at Cambridge, we needed a base which we would be happy to return to on a regular basis, and Victoria House fitted the bill perfectly.
Not only are Emma and Duncan friendly, helpful and hospitable, the establishment is lovely and furnished with charming touches so lacking in more corporate estabishments. The decor is, as you would expect in a Victorian establishment; sympathetic to its period features while managing to remain practical and stylish. We have stayed in 3 different rooms and found them all to suit our purposes perfectly. The bathrooms are always supplied with shampoos, shower gels, soaps, handcreams and plenty of freshly laundered, fluffy towels which adds to the sense that you could be in your own home. Furthermore, the beds are wonderfully comfortable with their luxurious bedding and attractive covers. Tea and coffee making facilities are generously supplied, including quality buscuits which are always replenished if necessary.
Breakfasts are excellent, with plenty of choice from fresh fruit, yoghurts and cereals to breads and pastries or full English. Tea and coffee is freely offered as are fruit juices. Sometimes, our daughter has met us here and been offered food and drink too, a testament to Emma and Duncan's hospitality.
As Cambridge is a difficult and expensive place to park, it is helpful that we are able to leave our car at the hotel. We are then free to walk or take a bus into the city centre without worrying about how long we will be. Having been stung £30 for parking our car whilst installing our daughter into her College, this is a great advantage for us.
We have stayed at Victoria B &B six times now, and intend to continue doing so, as we are alway given a warm welcome, and it is lovely to have found somewhere so pleasant to stay.

  • Stayed April 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
2 Thank Carol E
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
CambridgeDuncan, Owner at Victoria Bed and Breakfast, responded to this review, 7 May 2013
Thank you for the comments and feedback, it is appreciated. Look forward to seeing you again soon. Kind regards Emma and Duncan
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Seoul, South Korea
Level Contributor
26 reviews
12 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 12 helpful votes
Reviewed 25 February 2013

We stayed here for one night, getting two rooms, both of which were fine but nothing special. They were certainly small all over, and slightly dated in decor, but.... fine, and clean. It was a bit of a walk into the city centre, made harder by awful weather - in the evening, we lashed out on a taxi to get back through the snow and ice, and it was GBP8, which isn't too bad between two. Breakfast was great. The whole experience was fine and functional, rather than brilliant. If I was coming to Cambridge again, I would look around for other places to stay, but not be too disappointed if I had to stay here again.

  • Stayed January 2013, travelled with friends
    • Value
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Helpful?
1 Thank Martin W
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
CambridgeDuncan, Owner at Victoria Bed and Breakfast, responded to this review, 15 April 2013
Please can you contact us, our customer reviews are very important to us and we want to act upon them. However, we can not see that you stayed with us in January, perhaps there is a mistake?
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Surrey
Level Contributor
105 reviews
20 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 48 helpful votes
Reviewed 18 February 2013

I'm hoping the owners look at this review and see it as constructive criticism. There are little tiny things that could be done to really improve a stay here but i do notice that if anybody on here makes less than perfect review - they do comment rather defensively.
I will start with the positives. The host Emma met us and gave us a very thorough chat about Cambridge and recommended places and gave us a helpful map. The bed was very comfortable, a hair dryer (decent one) is provided - i didn't need to take my own and the cooked breakfast was absolutely lovely.
I couldn't say too many positives on the room as for us, there aren't many. I was on the understanding we had the largest room in the house. For us, it was still rather small and the bed was a double rather than a King - maybe photographs are deceiving. The en-suite was way too small. There is no ledge for your toiletries and once closed in the shower cubicle - you cannot physically bend down to pick them up without whacking yourself on the sides. I even had difficulty in sorting myself out after going to the loo as there was no floor space by the toilet as the sink juts out and occupies the only space. It really is like a small cupboard. Now i know, these things are structural and cannot really be changed but there are things that can. There were cobwebs under the mantelpiece and massive ones in the fireplace. I'm quite a nervy person with spiders and the only thing that made me calm was that spiders aren't usually around in February. But there is no reason at all why these should be here. I do feel there is more to keeping a room clean other than stripping the bed, vacuuming spare floor space and dusting obvious objects. There was dust in quite a lot of places and the decor was very tired and dated. The lampshade was 1970's circa as was the thick carpet style curtains.
Tea and coffee is fine but it really would be nice for guests to have a bottle of water? Glasses are provided as well as cups so was our water forgotten? I hadn't realised we had no water until we arrived back after a meal. I felt i couldn't go to the kitchen area as the door was closed and the kitchen area is then also blocked by swing doors. I needed water to take my pills.
Strawberries may look nice at breakfast but i couldn't quite understand why they would serve a fruit that is out of season and therefore tasteless and hard. It would have been nicer to serve a different fruit option otherwise there really is no point. There were also cobwebs in the lights above the dining tables.
For us, it wasn't what we would expect from a B+B charging £80 for 1 night. We have stayed in lots and lots and we usually choose ones around the £80 mark and this has been the far inferior to them all. Apart from the breakfast as the cooked breakfast was as i said before, very very nice and the hosts very pleasant. I think if the ensuite was a proper room rather than being purpose built within the room taking up the original room space, then space wouldn't have been too much of an issue but i guess for some it's more important to cram in more rooms for hire - which i guess i understand.
But for us, a room needs to be bigger, a toilet where you can move to dress yourself afterwards, a shower you can move comfortably move in and cobwebs dusted away and more of a modern decor (or not so more modern - but newer). This was therefore, not for us. If you're of an older generation, quite petite and not looking for a stylish looking room then this would be ideal.
A bus can be caught int Cambridge or you can have a nice leisurely walk which takes about 25minutes. On our 2nd day, we drove and parked in the car park at £1.80 per hour. In hindsight, I would have preferred to stay somewhere more picturesque in a nicer part seeing we had to drive into the city centre anyway.
I hope my review is not taken bitterly. I feel it's an honest reflection and with sites like these - i feel it's helpful for others so they can decide if it is right for them.

  • Stayed February 2013, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
6 Thank cicitina
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
CambridgeDuncan, Owner at Victoria Bed and Breakfast, responded to this review, 15 April 2013
We were extremely sorry and upset that you left unhappy, returning guests are an important aspect of our business. We have taken all of your comments seriously. The views of our customers are the most important aspect of the business and your feedback invaluable. We endeavour that future guests will not have these problems. Thank you.
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Nottingham, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
9 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
Reviewed 17 January 2013

Stayed at this B&B for one night, stayed in the single ensuite room. Upon arrival I was met b the owner Duncan, who was very friendly and welcoming. He showed me to my room which was a very reasonable size. The bathroon was small but was very clean and did the job. The room was also spotless, there was plenty of tea's and coffees provided. The room was very comfortable and warm. Breakfast the next morning was great, and I would thoroughly recommend staying here at the welcoming and friendly B&B.

  • Stayed January 2013, travelled on business
    • Value
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    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
Thank WhizzyValentine
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
CambridgeDuncan, Owner at Victoria Bed and Breakfast, responded to this review, 15 April 2013
Thank you so much for taking time to do the feedback and review, as a small family run business it means a lot to us.
Kind regards
Emma
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
TUSTIN, CA
Level Contributor
20 reviews
8 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
Reviewed 1 November 2012

Location: Once you orient yourself to the Cambridge city layout, you quickly discover that Victoria is a mere 2 mile walk to the city center, where all the colleges and shops are located. Alternatively, several bus routes stop at Arbury/Milton and at the bottom of Union Lane (#2), and both of these stops are within 10 minutes' walk to and from the B&B. This is important because I was able to travel to and from, and around Cambridge and beyond without ever seeing the inside of a taxi cab. Even with luggage and backpack, it was convenient to take the bus from the rail station and connect through the bus depot to the 2nd bus that stops at Arbury/Milton bus stop. Same for returning to the rail station on my departure for London. The centrality of their location and the vast network of buses that service Cambridge makes a taxi ride almost unnecessary for everyone.

Arbury Road: It is a busy, 2-lane/2-way, primarily residential street, filled with semi-detached and row houses. Traffic primarily consists of hell-bent bicyclists and nimble sub-compact cars...basically this is all the volume that Arbury Road can handle without bringing traffic to a stand-still. Still, I've always felt safe walking up and down the street as there is ample room on either side for pedestrians and the neighborhood itself simply struck me as safe, even when during my late night arrivals from the city center. Within .5 mile going either direction of Arbury Road are small grocery stores: Bugens and Co-Op, where I enjoyed "playing local" to shop for sundry items.

The Inn: It was very easy to spot, even on my arrival. Homey, quiet, and warm (temperature-wise), it provided a welcome ambiance.

The Room: Mine was on the ground floor #7. I booked for a double bed, which was what I got. The room was barely big enough to contain the bed, so walking/moving space was tight. So yes, the room is COMPACT. Amenities-wise, it had the standard coffee/tea/sugar/cups and saucer, plus cookies (!) which were replenished if you eat them. It was the perfect late-evening snack while watching TV, which is mounted into the wall (so as not to occupy addtl space). Just opposite the door is a short bar to hang clothes from, excluding heavy outer jackets, which would occupy nearly the entire space. The radiator heater provided soft, warmth but without the drying effect of a forced-air furnace (that we use in the U.S.). There is a small table beside the bed which I used to hold my 22" luggage and loose items. My window overlooks the side yard and part of the garden beyond, so it was really wonderful that I was able to see greenery and flora anytime I was in my room. Diaphanous curtains for daytime lent soft ambient lighting and blackout curtains for nighttime pitch-black darkness. The old-fashioned, "ancient" key to my bedroom door took skill to master: to get it into the "cavernous" hole then turn the key to unlock at exactly the correct position. I like this nod to earlier times; it tells me that people in earlier times clearly were not as time-strapped as today's traveler who requires instant lock/unlock response from either manual or electronic key (gasp!).

The Bathroom: Even more compact than the bedroom. It struck me as a clothes closet that has been repurposed to serve the function of an en-suite toilet and shower. Actually, its dimensions fit that of a closet exactly. But being a petite person, it wasn't so much of a deal-breaker for me....I just needed to get accustomed to it the first night, having just arrived from Los Angeles. They provided shampoo, lotion, and hand washing gel in regular sizes (not those 1 oz sample sizes). Using regular size toiletries gave more of a feeling that I was at home :=) Bring your own face towel (flannel), as they do not provide this.

The Dining Room: There were ample number of tables in various seating arrangements for everyone, and they were well spaced, so that we were not walking on top of one another during breakfast.

The Breakfast: ENORMOUS. Thick bacon slices, huge sausages, 2 fried eggs, mushrooms, baked beans, 4 slices of toast.....this is full English breakfast at its best! This on top of the cereals, fruits, and yogurt available from the buffet sideboard. For drinks: juices and your choice of tea, coffee, or hot chocolate. HANDS DOWN, Victoria B&B's breakfasts were the BEST that I've eaten, during my visit to the UK, staying at various B&B's. Two thumbs up!!!

The Innkeeper: Emma is simply THE BEST. Always giving me recommendations....I got to visit Ely on her suggestion :=) Emma is very knowledgeable about the local scene, and enthusiastically shared these with me. Everyday, we got together and shared tidbits....that was always a joy.

Room Tip: Room facing the garden. Emma keeps a beautiful home garden, complete with a greenhouse.
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  • Stayed October 2012, travelled solo
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
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    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
1 Thank LGBATMAZ
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Manchester, England, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
60 reviews
10 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 46 helpful votes
Reviewed 14 September 2012

This B&B was wonderful. clean, well designed, great food, the landlady was so welcoming.. we went for our 20th wedding anniversary and they were charming and gave us a huge box of thorntons chocs. The room was large with a beautiful brass victorian bed, an ensuite with a hot shower, lots of fluffy towels and lovely teas. 20 mins walk into central cambridge or much less if you hire a bike - which we reccomend..

  • Stayed September 2012, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
1 Thank Lisa T
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Victoria Bed and Breakfast

Property: Victoria Bed and Breakfast
Address: 57 Arbury Road, Cambridge CB4 2JB, England
Region: United Kingdom > England > Cambridgeshire > Cambridge
Amenities:
Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi )
Hotel Style:
Ranked #13 of 121 B&Bs / Inns in Cambridge
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): £
Hotel Class:4 star — Victoria Bed and Breakfast 4*
Number of rooms: 8
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Also Known As:
Victoria Hotel Cambridge
Victoria b&b

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