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“Nice but not really boutique”

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Sea Spray Boutique Hotel
Ranked #18 of 94 Brighton B&B and Inns
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed 14 May 2010

I wanted a last minute hotel room to cheer up my partner with a night in Brighton so I didn't really have time to do as much research as I usually would into my choice of hotel.
I was attracted by the Sea Spray website, and I wanted to pamper my partner a bit so I went for a b&b/dinner package in the Venetian Suite with some other added extras. I was not comfortable with the £115 price of this but I decided it was worth paying for a bit of luxury sometimes.
Upon arrival the check-in staff were friendly and helpful, and the room was pleasant and clean, although I thought the Venetian theme was a bit lacking (a couple of masks on the wall). From one side of the bed it was possible to see the sea.
I didn't get a feeling of boutique luxury though, and I got a bit of a sense of stinginess (e.g a bottle of wine with price tag attached, not much choice or quantity of tea, the bare minimum of toiletries). In a 'boutique' hotel I would have looked forward to fluffy slippers, dressing gowns and maybe some nice nuts or chocolates. Rather than a boutique hotel I'd say this was a nicer than average b&b, and my disappointment at the value for money is behind my rating of only average.
We had a problem with the television not picking up some channels, and in this the owner was very attentive and quick to sort out the issue, so we were pleased about that.
I was disappointed not to have a bathtub, as I like to spoil myself in a bubble bath when I'm in a hotel. I was given the password for free wi-fi, but couldn't get it to work on my phone. The room came with a DVD player, so we chose a DVD from the small library in reception.
We had vouchers for a nearby brasserie as I had booked the b&b/dinner package. The brasserie was lovely, and the meal was delicious with generous portions (we managed fine with the limited menu) and thankfully the vegetarian option was to my taste.) However, I was nonplussed to discover that I would have saved a couple of pounds by just walking in off the street rather than going as a pre-paid guest of the hotel. I had expected the deal to save me a bit of money on dinner, and so I felt a bit shortchanged.
The room was not as quiet as hoped. The people upstairs sounded like elephants as they walked around their room, and we could hear another guest's extractor fan from a nearby room all night.
We had the option of breakfast in bed, which was a nice touch (guests not on the package deal would have to pay an extra £5 for this service). However, we were not provided with trays, so actually attempting to have breakfast in bed would have been disastrous. Instead, we spent five minutes rearranging the furniture and placing the breakfast items on two flimsy plastic tables which were not really up to the job of holding any weight, before we could tuck in to our meal. The breakfast was tasty and filling, and kept us going for hours. As leisure guests we were in no real hurry, but we had already been awake and hungry (and with no teabags or milk left for a cup of tea) for 1 1/2 hours by the time our breakfast came at 09:00 and it would have been nice to have it earlier.
Overall we had a pleasant stay in Brighton, and I am very grateful to the staff for their politeness and attentiveness. However, I would have felt delighted with the hotel if I had paid £30 less than my £115 per night.

  • Stayed: May 2010, travelled as a couple
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Thank cheekyweelassie
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
NBoyce, General Manager at Sea Spray Boutique Hotel, responded to this reviewResponded 15 May 2010

Thank you for your recent review.

I am pleased to see that a number of elements of your stay were enjoyable; however I am sorry to hear that others weren’t.

At £115.00 for two people, I do believe that we have offered a competitive rate for the location and for the product that we offer during this peak season. This rate included a welcome drink, dinner for two with a drink each, breakfast in bed, a private sauna session for two and £5.00 off any massages booked. The dinner package is actually £2.00 less than advertised in the Brasserie. Booked separately from our bed and breakfast package, the room and above elements would have totaled £175.00. This has proven to be an extremely popular package due to its outstanding value.

I am sorry that you did not find the theme ‘lacking’; however I feel that having taken into consideration the varying individual tastes which our customers have, it is perfectly balanced. Our website demonstrates all of the facilities offered in each room (Venetian advertising a shower facility).

We advertise additional services, as is commonplace in most hotels, and the demand for additional elements, such as a mini bar and bottles of wine is usually well received by all of our guests. Coupled with the complimentary drinks offered as part of your package, I do believe that it is an opportunity that the majority of our guests will continue to appreciate.
I am so pleased that you found our staff helpful and friendly. One of our many strengths is within our customer service, and I am pleased that we were able to assist you on the occasion we were made aware of. Individual wireless phones do require varying modes of application in connecting to a network for the first time, and I am sorry that you were unable to do so; however I am not aware that this was an issue raised in order to be rectified. Our room service team operates, as advertised, to enable those who wish to enjoy additional time in the comfort of their bed, and breakfast is always delivered on a large tray.

I am sorry that you had a few disappointments during your stay; however I hope that the above has demonstrated that we are offering a competitive service.
With Kind regards,

General Manager

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735 - 741 of 873 reviews

Reviewed 12 May 2010

When I went to book this hotel I read the reviews on TripAdvisor and I must admit I was slightly off put. I called the hotel just to gauge what response I had to my queries, The phone was ansered courteously and the responses I was given gave me the confidence to book.
After Staying there I wanted to write a really sarcastic review about taking the mick out of those that had faulted the Hotel. But I decided to keep it straight.
In a sentence this Hotel is lovely!
The room we had (the Venetian), was large and airy, the balcony overlooked the sea and Brighton Pier. The cleanliness was spot on, the help from reception was excellent.
I have stayed in a number of hotels in and around Europe, it is always the big city hotels that are quite rough (eg Holiday Inn, Mayfair, London...£225 for a scabby room that was supposed to be 5 star). I have stayed in a few in Brighton, NONE, I repeat NONE that I have stayed in Brighton match the Sea Spray for quality and value, I was fortunate to have a reduced rate room as it was midweek, so this was a bonus.
Don't let some reviews put you off, if unsure call the hotel and they will put your mind at rest.
We hope to be going back to Brighton in a few weeks, and this hotel will definitely be on top of the list to call first for availability.

  • Stayed: April 2010, travelled as a couple
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Thank gaytelford
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 11 May 2010

We stayed for one night on a last minute booking and were more than satisfied.

The staff were extremely helpful & knowledgeable.

The location was ideal - a very short walk from the main pier & a nice stroll to the Lanes.

The room had a view of the sea & pier and was immaculately clean with plenty of space in the room.

The only slight criticisms were that there was not much space to store one's belongings & if we'd paid full whack would have felt that we'd paid too much.

All in all we'd recommend Sea Spray highly for anyone who wants a nice, clean, comfortable place to stay in Brighton.

  • Stayed: May 2010, travelled as a couple
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Thank SandfieldGH
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 10 May 2010

After visiting Brighton every year for the last four years we decided to take our children with us this time. Our usual hotel, Drakes, doesn't cater for family rooms so we looked for a similar boutique style that did. Sea Spray appeared to cover this for us.

However, it is merely an average guest house with very average facilities. A maximum of 3 showers or 1 deep bath is possible due to water tank capabilities, beds are far too soft and the heat is almost unbearable until 10pm but necessary as after 10pm the heating goes off and you slowly begin to freeze!

Breakfast was served by very pleasant staff but it was not the greatest of quality.

Overall we left hugely disappomited that £386 didn't get the standard that anyone would expect.

My advice? Stick to Drakes!

  • Stayed: May 2010, travelled with family
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2  Thank TuppenceDorset
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 8 May 2010

My girlfriend and I stayed here for her birthday and got a good deal on the Manhatten suite. We were quite aware the theme of the rooms may be tacky and found it humurous on arrival. We liked the room but at no point did we think we were in manhattan.

The room was very spacious and had all the amenitites one would need. We enjoyed the whirlpool bath but again it was not luxurious.

The staff were welcoming and friendly and made to feel very at home. We had Champagne breakfast in our room one day which was great.

A pleasant stay in a nice hotel.

  • Stayed: March 2010, travelled as a couple
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Thank bobbie_special
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 26 April 2010

the room was dirty and dusty and the for 4 adults too small.

shame as the staff were very good and the breakfast very good and the massage they arranged even better!

i wont go back

  • Stayed: April 2010, travelled with family
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2  Thank MurraySurrey
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 17 April 2010

We loved the location of this hotel as it is in easy walking distance of everything....
BUT... i found their web site misleading.
When we arrived the staff were welcoming and helpful and the reception area was lovely so we assumed our room would also be lovely!!?!
We were unaware what room we would be allocated and was disappointed to say the least with the 'Oriental' suite.
We had booked for 2 nights and we feel it was very over priced ( £218. )for what we got.
The room was tiny, looked tired and had barely any hanging space for clothes for 2 people.
The double 4 poster bed looked great but was wobbly and the shower was no better than useless.. i have more power from my garden sprinkler!!
The room was really hot.... then in the evenings very cold.
The breakfast was lovely the 1st morning but was not good on the second morning... re heated rubbery eggs and luke warm tea!!
We regularly visit Brighton but i have to say we will not be returning to 'Sea Spray'
There are lots of lovely boutique hotels in Brighton that are better value for money and more spacious.

  • Stayed: April 2010, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank valentine73
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
NBoyce, manager at Sea Spray Boutique Hotel, responded to this reviewResponded 20 April 2010

Thank you for reviewing our hotel – feedback is important to us as we are always striving to improve on customer service, comfort and your overall experience with us. All of our staff work hard to ensure that our customers are happy during their time with us and nothing is too much trouble with regard to customer requests. Our great location,being central and within a few minutes walk from the beach/restaurants etc was appreciated by you and thank you for commenting on this.



However we are very sorry we did not meet your expectations in other areas. The room you booked is one of our entry level double rooms and we do not call it a suite we call it a Compact Double when booking direct. However your booking was through a third party system where we do not have control on room labels. The system I believe calls this room an ensuite double – again not a suite. We do have other rooms which are suites and perhaps there was confusion due to the room being booked indirectly. The photo of the Oriental room on our own website is a fair and accurate photo of this room in terms of appearance and size. The two night rate of £218 did include 15% commission payable to the third party system (not to the hotel). In addition, it was booked at the weekend which reflects peak prices and we ensure at all times that we are competitively priced in Brighton with regard to our location, services offered etc.



The room is one of our older double rooms but nonetheless was painted last year and a new television with built in dvd player installed. The wardrobe space is compact but usually adequate for our usual short letting activity of one or two nights for this type of room.



The temperature of the rooms can be adjusted by thermostat controls on the radiators in each room and there is heat all evening. We have investigated this room’s radiator to see if there was a problem with it but it seems to be working fine and this was not brought to our attention during your stay. We have staff on reception all day and until 10 pm for assistance with these matters.



We have received an award for our breakfast and we cannot understand why there was an inconsistency with this. Obviously human error can happen and perhaps the tea urn had switched off but we would have happily provided another pot of tea had the issue been raised with one of our waiting staff. However, we will check this issue with the breakfast team to ensure it does not occur again.



Once again I would like to reiterate that we are a progressive hotel and will take your comments on board and look at this room with a fresh eye to improve it. The bed did need a couple of screws tightening up and was overlooked in a Duty Manager Check as we had been very busy during the Easter period. I would also like to add that we do have many more spacious rooms on offer here at Sea Spray and the majority of our customers give us positive feedback upon departure.

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Additional Information about Sea Spray Boutique Hotel

Address: 26 New Steine, Brighton BN2 1PD, England
Region: United Kingdom > England > East Sussex > Brighton and Hove > Brighton
Amenities:
Beach Business Centre with Internet Access Free Breakfast Restaurant Room Service Suites
Hotel Style:
Ranked #18 of 94 B&Bs / Inns in Brighton
Price Range: £72 - £180 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4 star — Sea Spray Boutique Hotel 4*
Number of rooms: 10
Reservation Options:
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