I stayed at the Imperial a few times some years ago on business, when it was 5 star. I was very impressed, so decided to take my wife for our wedding anniversary, not realising it had changed hands since my last visit. I then read the reviews - with some trepidation, but did not experience the problems others had. Perhaps the management read the reviews and took action.
We had a premier room with a balcony, sunbeds and an amazing view of the sea. OK, so the paintwork was a little shabby, but the room was large and very clean. We used the indoor pool which was a little disappointing - the changing room had a very strong smell of drains, and the pool surface could have been cleaned more regularly - I did not like finding long strands of dark hair floating about (not mine - which is short and white!)
Dinner in the hotel was well-cooked and tasty, but could have done with more vegetables. It was surprising that the menu had no prices, and it appeared from our bill that each dish had different prices - but we did not know this beforehand. There was some delay in our starters arriving - 40 minutes is a bit excessive - but the rest came quite promptly. I was dreading the breakfast, based on some of the reviews, but found that even at the busiest time there were enough staff and that the hot buffet was regularly replenished, Hot drink orders were taken when we were shown to our table, and arrived promptly. A good range of cold food and pastries - with proper jam, not the little plastic packets many hotels provide.
All the staff we encountered were pleasant and friendly.
Another niggle was the expensive parking. I can see the need to deter non-resident parking, but £7 a night is exorbitant.
But all-in-all a pleasant stay, although a little expensive - but the view was worth it!
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- The Imperial Torquay is a 19th Century four-star hotel in a stunning cliff-top location on the English Riviera. Just a mile from Torquay train station, and 10 minutes walk from the town centre and its famous promenade, this Mediterranean-style hotel is a great base for exploring Devon and North Cornwall. Close by are sandy beaches, the Eden Project and Dartmoor National Park. After a day of exploring relax in the Health & Leisure Club then enjoy delicious food in the award-winning Regatta Restaurant. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Imperial Hotel Torquay
- Barcelo Torquay
- Imperial Torquay
- Torquay Imperial Hotel
- Hotel Imperial Torquay
- The Imperial Torquay Devon