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“Interestng mix of old and new”

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Hotel du Vin Exeter
Ranked #17 of 31 Hotels in Exeter
Reviewed 26 July 2014

+ great traditional building with very modern and fancy interior
+ amicable and attentive staff
+ modern and clean rooms
+ great choice for breakfast and very fast service
+ good restaurant for dinner

- Rates pretty high
- Rooms might need refurbishment in a while
- Limited space for parking

  • Stayed: July 2014, travelled on business
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Service
Thank petersuperior
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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883 - 889 of 1,386 reviews

Reviewed 24 July 2014

This hotel was absolutely beautiful. The rooms were so clean and fresh, I felt automatically at home here. It is a beautiful old building that has been renovated to a fantastic standard. It does not feel stuffy in the way that some high end hotels can be but it is fantastically done - and maintained - in an understated and relaxed way.

I stayed in a regular room. It was relatively small - as some reviewers have mentioned - however I did not feel that it was cramped in any way considering the ceiling height was almost twice that of a regular building (I live in Edinburgh yet I've never before seen ceilings this high!). The bathroom contained a bath with shower over. It was a monsoon shower (excellent water pressure and hot water throughout the day), with an additional hand held shower head and a tap to fill the bath. The bath itself was a comfortable size for bathing. All was very modern (without being cold and uninviting), and beautifully done. The bathroom products were all REN - shampoo, conditioner, shower gel, body lotion and a bar of soap. The room had a Nespresso coffee machine, a kettle, a mini bar fridge, tv, ipad, hair dryer, shower cap, air conditioning and a wardrobe with hangers. Robes were also found in the bathroom but no slippers. The mini bar was complimentary, and was restocked each day. It contained two bottles of beer, one can of diet coke, regular coke and 7up, a bottle of water and sparkling water, and a carton of fresh milk. The coffee was Nespresso and the tea provided was Twinnings. I read a previous review that complained of how little was available in the complimentary mini bar but I think it was a lovely (unnecessary) touch, and that combined with the standard of brands available (fresh milk, Twinnings tea) were all little things that really impressed me.

The housekeeping staff were also great. They really looked after the rooms well, and I felt the level of cleanliness about the hotel was top standard. This is something I'm quite anxious about with hotels, but I felt so comfortable here. They were also always smiling and saying hello to us.

The grounds were lovely. There was a small garden with the pool on one side and spa/gym and potting shed on the other. The garden had a number of deck chairs out to lounge on (and was a sun trap in the beautiful Devon sunshine), while the pool was private from the garden area by a low wall and shrubs. The pool itself was relatively small but a perfect relief from the heat (I imagine it would be really cosy as well in winter). There was an outdoor pool which led into an indoor pool which contained jacuzzi style jets around the edges. There was also a log burner alongside the pool (but this obviously wasn't lit as it was about 28 degrees). Not a pool for swimming lengths, but certainly lovely for leisure and cooling down in.

One important thing to mention - the building is a historical building. It, therefore, has the potential to be noisy with its beautiful sash-in-case windows still in tact. However, noisy it is not. While the character of the windows have been retained, an additional secondary glazing as been installed which works wonderfully to keep out any outside noise. The walls are also obviously very thick and so internal noise between rooms is not an issue either. I didn't hear a single thing.

Unfortunately, we had one little issue, and this is why I have given the hotel 4 stars rather than five. We chose to eat in the hotel on our last day. We ordered at 1:30pm and by 2 o'clock were asking where our food (sandwiches) was, as people who had come in after us already had their food. Eventually at 2:10pm we asked to cancel our order and left as there was still no sign of the food. The staff apologised, but we did feel that they weren't too bothered with us as we don't necessarily look the type to fall over to impress. I wouldn't like to say the service in this hotel is poor as the massage in the spa was lovely and the housekeeping girls were certainly excellent, but the staff in the restaurant and lounge certainly need to improve their service.

I don't feel that I can do justice to how lovely the rooms were in this hotel. I would definitely recommend it (I have already persuaded various family members to stay here). And I hope that our experience of the food service was just a once off, because it feels a shame not to be able to give this hotel a 5 star review, as it really is that beautiful.

Room Tip: We had room 114 - it was at the front of the hotel and was facing a road but the secondary glazing o...
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  • Stayed: July 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Service
1  Thank Aoife D
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 20 July 2014

This is a boutique hotel. I have never stayed at a place that hands out an IPad at checkin. Room very modern. Staff were all extraordinarily hospitable. Reception staff, restuarant staff were all great. Had breakfast buffet on Sunday morning that was tasty. We only stayed here one night, but really enjoyed our stay. Quiet, clean room with a comfy bed. We had been staying in a B&B in Edinborough and then a "hotel" in London, before arriving here. Exeter was a happening place. As a US citizen, I have never seen a travel show about Exeter and only knew about it due to Rick Steves and its close proximity (100 mi) to Pt Isaac (where they film Doc Martin) I loved the walkways over the old City walls (from Roman times) The underground tour of the water sources was fascinating. Cathedral Square was grand. All these places were a very short walk from the hotel. The "Quay" pronouced "key" was a great way to spend our last Sunday afternoon in the UK before heading off to Ireland. Yes there is an airport in Exeter, 4 gates, convenient passenger lounge. The train ride from Paddington was only about 2 hours.

  • Stayed: June 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Service
Thank jeffbunten
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 20 July 2014 via mobile

We stayed on a busy Friday night. Unfortunately the front of house staff were scruffy and we were handed a "dirty" iPad on arrival. I had to clean the screen with some loo roll before use! The carpet in the room was also not clean. I did mention this to reception but they didn't subsequently clean the room. On the positive side the hotel is well located and there are some great offers on drinks on a Friday evening. Unfortunately I think this hotel is overpriced for the level of service and general cleanliness.

Stayed: July 2014
2  Thank T_Pound
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 20 July 2014

The hotel was very stylish and the room was modern. Unfortunately I would say it was a little on the small side but on the plus it did have a beautiful large bath. The spa was excellent as was the restaurant. This hotel offers the total package. Walking distance to the city yet it has a beautiful quiet lawned area to sit out on. Spa, delicious food in the restaurant, cocktail bar and friendly staff. Would definitely recommend.
* just as a tip for others I noticed that they allowed dogs in the hotel which we thought was great for those who don't want to leave their furry friends at home.

  • Stayed: July 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Sleep Quality
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Thank EH278
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 17 July 2014

Stayed for Exeter graduation and it felt that the hotel was stretched to breaking point. The rooms are all a bit random with hugely different space for the same price. Downstairs works well but rooms all a bit clinical ( given that it is an old eye hospital, maybe not that strange!)

The real downside is the staff in that all they really want to do is be your friend! The whole thing has a ridiculously casual air, ranging from waiters trying to chip into private conversationsto doormen watching my wife struggling with luggage and not offering to help. Whole air is not helped by a rather shambolic check in.

Finally, purely for observation, the road outside is very noisy

  • Stayed: July 2014, travelled with family
    • Sleep Quality
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
3  Thank Nick z
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 16 July 2014

Stayed here with work, very funky hotel and ipad in each room(£400 if you break it!) but the highlight was the staff. really good service, all the time, especially a lady called Brody who dealt with my high maintenance food order. She was lovely and smiley and really helpful!

  • Stayed: July 2014, travelled on business
    • Value
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Thank Stacey W
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Hotel du Vin Exeter

Address: Magdalen Street, Exeter EX2 4HY, England (Formerly The Magdalen Chapter)
Region: United Kingdom > England > Devon > Exeter
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beverage Selection Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Spa Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#3 Luxury Hotel in Exeter
Price Range: £84 - £159 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4 star — Hotel du Vin Exeter 4*
Number of rooms: 59
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The Magdalen Chapter combines old and new to create a stunning contemporary hotel. Service and quality are to the highest standard where integrated interiors and technology make your stay it’s most enjoyable. Situated close to the sophistication of Exeter’s centre, it's an ideal place to stay for a city break or to further explore Devon. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Hotel Du Vin Exeter Devon

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