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“Paradise”
Review of The Grand Hotel

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The Grand Hotel
Ranked #35 of 87 Hotels in Torquay
Manchester, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
36 reviews
12 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 36 helpful votes
“Paradise”
Reviewed 28 August 2013 via mobile

Pitched up early hours in the morning, early June. Parked on the road right outside, no mither. Had to ring the night bell, arrival processed by one of the night porters, but you can't expect a genuine receptionist at that time of night, can you ? Walked over to the empty bar for a well deserved bottle of lager. Place deserted. Well, it were three in the morning, you can't expect the place to be buzzing at that time of night, can you ? Wandered over to the balconee offav the bar to have a long lingering look at the Italianate curvature of the town of Torquay and the harbour in the middle distance. Beautiful. Said as much to another of the night porters who was having a sly fag on the balconeee. He just grunted by way of response, prompting an awkwardness as the two of us stood there silently, smoking and watching, in the early hours of that unforgettable Saturday morning in early June. Bet he thought I was coming on to him, because I'd arrived alone. But, I wasn't. But, that's why I think he weren't for striking up a conversation. And, if he's reading this now, let me just say 'Mate, I weren't trying owt on, I were just saying how beautiful the scene across the bay were'. Anyway, they gave me a crummy room for the first night, with a rubbish view, but, when the Missus arrived the following day and started kicking off, we was upgraded to a proper mint massive room with a smashing view of the beautiful bay. Special mention to the guy what were doing painting by the poolside. Lolling in the pool, watching him painting. Absolute joy. Got those brushstrokes spot on. Total genius. Real pride in his work.

  • Stayed May 2013
    • Value
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    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank poachedorfried
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Torquay, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
28 reviews
18 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 61 helpful votes
Reviewed 28 August 2013

We have eaten here, partcularly for lunch on quite a few occasions over the last few years, but the lunch menu is now very limited and uninspiring. It doesn't feel like very good value. The young waiting staff are generally poor except for one more mature lady lady who smiled and wanted to be helpful.
It amazed me that there was no Sauvignon Blanc in stock, although they do offer 4 or 5 on their wine menu.
Overall the hotel needs an update, the area with the leather chairs and libaray feel is pleasant but the rest of the main areas and run down. The colour scheme is dated. This needs a review by someone with style, who can maintain the original features but give it a wow factor. The bar in the centre of the lounge could be lovely but it is worn out, in a bad way.
The views are lovely but the hotel could be capitalising on its position with some imagination and flair.
The rooms need a similar overhall, it feels very much past its best, which is a shame.

  • Stayed August 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
1 Thank BeautifulTorquay
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed 27 August 2013

We've been coming to Torquay, twice a year for the last 16 years. This is our 2nd time at the Grand and last - we stayed in room 409 which is classed as a premier room ( not on this earth, is that a 4star premier room), we were expecting a lot better we found the room very small,claustrophobic,hot,tired, dated and very basic. The bathroom was no better with the added addition of cheap toilet paper and a toilet that wouldn't flush. In our opinion the Grand is not worth a 4 Star and we've stayed in a few! The breakfast was average at best and couldn't understand why there was a surcharge for additional items such as kippers etc, our cups did not match and were both dirty, we also had to hunt for a couple of clean plates in the pile of plates that seemed ready for the carboot!
The whole hotel needs a total transformation and the decor resembles the haunted mansion in Disney World.

  • Stayed August 2013
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Thethug1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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Pontypool, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
16 reviews
8 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
Reviewed 27 August 2013

This hotel was booked by our friends for a weekend to celebrate their wedding anniversary
After reading some of the reviews on here I was a bit concerned but the room was clean and the beds were comfy tea and coffee in room I couldn't decide whether our room had been recently done or not but it is definitely very old fashioned.so if you want modern clean bright hotels don't stay here
We ate in the balcony restaurant and the food was ok but nothing more. The staff were friendly
We were lucky we went down for breakfast about 8.45am but after that it was a scrum not enough staff clearing the tables or restocking the hot breakfast dishes lots of people were very annoyed.
There were lots of signs telling when the busy it's time was but no one seemed to have taken any notice

Room Tip: We were at the back of the hotel which was looking out over the train station but it didn't both...
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  • Stayed August 2013, travelled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
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    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Marydelahay
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Level Contributor
4 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed 27 August 2013 via mobile

We booked for the gourmet barbecue evening on the terrace for the torquay fireworks..3 adults and 3 children. I would say that the view of the fireworks were fantastic but disappointed with the barbecue to me it wasn't very gourmet not much choice of food, a bowl of mixed salad and coleslaw, beef burgers with dry rolls there was a choice of spicy chicken and spicy prawns ( which my children didn't eat because of the flavour) and boring new potatoes.. No imagination was put into the menu..The only sparks were in the dessert and the fireworks..

  • Stayed August 2013
    • Cleanliness
Helpful?
Thank MNWLP
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Derby
Level Contributor
46 reviews
24 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 43 helpful votes
Reviewed 27 August 2013

If you think you are going to stay at a grand hotel, then I suggest you read this review. When I booked online, it says free cancellation. I tried to see their terms and conditions and this did not appear. So I thought like any good reputable hotel company, when it says free cancellation you can cancel up to a minimum of 72 hours. Not this company, it is 48 days. So beware. As I booked 30 days in advance, I was not able to cancel my reservation. So I was stuck with the reservation and have to stay here. I must admit that they did allow me to change the date with no penalty.
On a positive note, the staff were friendly.
It cost me £522 for a sea facing room and 3 nights and as you can see it is not cheap.
On arrival, the check in was slow. There was only 1 receptionist there and another lady checking some paper work. She saw me waiting a long time and just continued doing what ever she was doing. The receptionist that was busy checking someone in has to call her to come and attend to me. I then found out that she is Front of House Manager. No if this is how a manager behaves, how can she expect her staff to be different?
The room was small and stiffly hot. There was a breeze outside and not air came into the room at all with our room facing the sea. We tried everything to cool the room down, including putting the fan on the window. This made no difference. Like all hotel, they have the sign about not changing the towels etc. Well I put this to the test and put all the towel in the bath as it says if you want them change, put them in the bath. Well on our return from a day out, the towels were not changed, simply folded and replaced on the towel rail. You would ask how would I know that they did this. Well all the towels were still wet. The shower/bath gels were not replace even though we had used both of them. I wanted to use the safe in the room, and there was a notice on it saying "there will be a £2.00 per day for using this safe". Having paid top dollars, I do not expect to have to pay for this facility when no other hotels charges including 2 star hotels. They do provide a bottle of water daily, but then there are 2 of us, so why only 1 bottle. How mean can one be. Nothing been changed in the room since Richardson took over this hotel, The evacuation notice on the door still has Best Western signs on it.
Now the restaurant. We have booked to have the first nights dinner here at the hotel. They boast that they have 1 rosette. Well I would not give them any after having experienced it. Drinks order was hard work as the lady that came to take our orders spoke very little English. I asked for a Bulmers cider and she did not understand what I want. I repeated this several times and she must have just heard the word cider. She brought me a pint of thatchers. I sent it away and she spoke with the restaurant manager came to see what I wanted and I did get my Bulmers. The starter was good as one cannot go wrong with crab and prawn cocktail, though disguised a tian. The main course consisted of grill fish, with cold sauce made from creme fraiche. No cooking there again apart from pan frying the fish.
Breakfast was similar. Not as good as Marriott or other large chain. If you want smoked haddock or kipper you have to pay a £2 or £2.50 supplement. WHAT, after paying over £170 per night and still have to pay a supplement? My friends stayed a a nearby 2 star hotel and did not have to pay any supplement for both these items at breakfast. My cup was cracked and I had to ask for it to be changed. The coffee when it arrived, it was cold. When they changed the coffee and cup, the cup was badly stained and I had to ask for this to be changed again. On the menu it says, soya mile is available on request. My partner asked for this and was told they do not have any. This was not available on all the 3 days we were there even when we have requested it. On the menu it also states fried bread, and this was not available either. I asked for soft boiled eggs on the second morning and they were hard boiled. I asked for poached egg on the last day and they were so hard, I can play table tennis with them. A rosette restaurant?????????
The indoor pool was nice, though the floor tiles needed replacing as there there several cracked. The out door pool was brilliant but was disappointed when we were told we had to vacate it by 6 pm on Saturday as there is no lifeguard on duty.
When I asked to see the manager before I checked out, it appears that the manager on duty that morning was the restaurant manager. He did not seem interested in what I have to say and did not make any notes at all. He most probably think I was a PIN. When we conversed more, I found out that he was only there for 10 days and therefore very new in his role at the hotel.
I do not usually write such a long comment, but on this occasion I felt that I had to point out the issues I had whilst staying here.
As you can see the Richard sons has damaged what was an excellent hotel.

Room Tip: We were in 108 and it was extremely hot
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  • Stayed August 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
5 Thank PinPetchThai
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Cardiff, United Kingdom
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
Reviewed 26 August 2013

I booked this hotel because we have stayed in this hotel on several occasions in the past. This is the last stay we shall ever have at the Grand.

The staff at reception are very good, are as the waiters and bar staff. The hotel however, is suffering from lack of investment and it is showing in the quality and standards.
The room was dated and poorly maintained had hastily installed flat screen TV, the installers had just drilled the wall to install cables and they protruded from these drill holes. The furnishings and furniture were old and very tired.
The standard of cleanliness is suspect as we found hair still around the taps and in the shower from the previous guest. The shower door did not close and the shower dripped constantly.
The bed had woollen blankets, which, whilst clean does seem rather old fashioned.

On the last few visits we have experienced an increase in the number of wedding parties being held at the Grand. On this occasion there was a very public and uncomfortable altercation with one of the parties which caused quite an upset.

As a staying/paying guest, it is not the sort of atmosphere I would expect or enjoy witnessing. No longer opulence, more main stream/ budget.

I fully understand the economics of running a business and appreciate that to provide revenue for investment then a profit must be generated. But perhaps less profit focus and more customer focus would improve the fortunes of this hotel.

I could continue this review with many other instances of poor quality and service (45 mins wait for a main course, which the waiter did apologise for), but as the number of reviews speak for themselves I will just leave it to the people looking for a hotel stay in Torquay.

  • Stayed August 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
6 Thank Traveller1612013
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about The Grand Hotel

Property: The Grand Hotel
Address: Sea Front, Torquay TQ2 6RH, England
Region: United Kingdom > England > Devon > English Riviera > Torquay
Amenities:
Beach Business Centre with Internet Access Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#6 Spa Hotel in Torquay
#12 On the Beach Hotel in Torquay
#15 Business Hotel in Torquay
#15 Luxury Hotel in Torquay
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££
Hotel Class:4 star — The Grand Hotel 4*
Number of rooms: 132
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Torquay's Historic Jewel For old world grandeur and traditional British charm, the Grand has been Torquay's landmark hotel for over 130 years. Overlooking one of the finest bays, this elegant Victorian hotel offers 132 individually styled bedrooms, The Grand spa, AA rosette restaurant 1881 and is surrounded by 22 miles of spectacular Devon coastline. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
The Grand Hotel Torquay, Devon

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