I have lived in Sussex all my life (that's about 30 years) and have been lucky enough to stay in a wide range of hotels and resorts in that time. The Grand has always only ever been one of those places that I walk past and think "I wonder what that's like?"
So we went as a group of 4; the in-laws, my wife and I for 1 night on 1st March 2014.
Firstly, we were greeted by a friendly, well-dressed chap who was manning the front door and directing traffic. Disappointingly, we were told their car park was full and that they were directing people to the NCP around the corner (24 hour stay at £25.10) - so off we went, having offloaded luggage. Check-in itself was painless enough and luggage willingly taken to our rooms for us.
Rooms were spectacular, we were on the 7th floor with a sea view. Decorated to a high standard and very comfortable beds, sofa and chairs.
We did not stay in for dinner that night but were told the restaurant was fully booked anyway. We did attempt to get a drink at the bar/lounge area, but all seating was occupied so We promptly retreated to our room with said drink before heading out for the evening.
A taxi was booked for us immediately on request and turned up on time.
On return to the hotel at 11pm, we fancied a bite so ordered room service. This was from the 24 hour menu; we ordered California rolls (sushi) and a club baguette. Service was slow, the food took the best part of an hour to arrive, and these were not hot dishes - the sushi in particular I can imagine is pre prepared and grabbed from the fridge as required. That aside, the chap who delivered the food was apologetic that they were very busy and pleasant with it.
Breakfast. Bit of a shambles. We arrived around 09:30 to find the main restaurant pretty much packed. We had to move some furniture around to create our own table for 4 (with assistance from a member of staff in fairness).
The buffet setup resembled a feeding trough for animals. It was constantly running out of hot items and I would say totally inadequate for the number of people in the restaurant. I opted for smoked haddock from the menu (£4.95 supplement) which took around 30 minutes to arrive. In the meantime, I grabbed a few bits from the cold buffet which also was running out. The staff you could see were clearly overworked and this unfortunately reflected in the overall quality.
In summary, this certainly is a Grand hotel as far as the architecture and decor are concerned. But in my opinion, the quality of service and food are let down by a lack of staff at times. Add to that I felt a general air of pretentiousness from the whole place, not befitting of the actual quality you end up with. A bit of a disappointment to be honest, when you consider the cost of staying here.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- This is a truly remarkable hotel. An iconic Victorian building, it stands centre stage on the vibrant Brighton seafront and is a local landmark. Magnificent, imposing and the epitome of luxury. This is The Grand, Brighton. Following a recent extensive refurbishment, The Grand experience is one you will never forget. It's in the splendour of the 123 step sweeping staircase, the exquisite textures in the bedrooms, the delectable cuisine in GB1 restaurant and the sumptuous surroundings of The Spa at The Grand. It's in the stunning seaviews and the warmth with which you are welcomed. It's in its innate sense of style. The magnificent Grand is a popular location for films and television shows. Coronation Street, Eastenders and Only Fools and Horses have all shot episodes in the hotel. For the complete Brighton experience, it has to be The Grand, Brighton. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- The De Vere Grand Brighton Hotel Brighton
- De Vere Grand Brighton
- De Vere Grand Hotel Brighton
- Brighton Grand Hotel