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“Upstairs great, downstairs so-so”

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Hotel du Vin Cheltenham
Ranked #5 of 23 Hotels in Cheltenham
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed 23 October 2012

This hotel feels as if it is run by two different organisations. A hotel and housekeeping company that is top notch and a bar and kitchen with poor organisation and customer service.

We stayed on a Sunday night on the room + eat in deal and were so impessed by the reception staff, our lovely room and the swishest bathroom I have ever encountered that we were already planning on visiting other HDVs before we set foot in the bar or restaurant.Having lounged about on our huge bed, read all the magazines and had a lovely long soak in our roll top bath we ventured down to the lovely bar area to watch the world go by outside the hotel and have a couple of drinks before dinner.

This was where it all started to go wrong. The surley barmaid commanded us to sit down when we approached the bar and then proceeded to ignore us for for getting on for 20 minutes. I could see other guests moving around the room to attract attention or looking frustrated. I complained to one of the other staff and eventually our cocktails arrived. When I'd finished mine I began to think it would have been nice to have some olives with it, just before we went down to the restaurant a bowl arrived. I can understand that HDV want to deliver a good experience but in refusing service from the bar and having 3 very grumpy staff who cannot service the needs of a maximum of 6 couples in the bar is a pretty poor show.

Down to the restaurant where things don't get better. Despite the fact that the rstaurant is not very full all the guests are seated at tables close together at one end of the room as they arrive, we felt a bit inhibited in our conversation because of this. I'd checked the autumn menu before I booked the room as I am vegetarian and wanted to be sure there would be suitable options. There is only one vegetarian option per course and the warm beetroot salad ( well, it sounded a bit more fancy than that) which I had been looking forward to was "off". The only option then was an egg salad from the fixed price menu - an egg salad on a special night out!!!!

All in all we waited 43 minutes for our starters and although my husband's dressed crab was very nice it didn't have anything at all by way of garnish, not a leaf of rocket or slice of lemon. The delay was made all the more pianful as most of the other diners seemed to be wriggling in thier chairs waiting for orders to be taken or the next course to arrive too. After I'd complained things did speed up, and the restaurant manager did not charge us for the cocktails and we had some free pudding wine provided ( rather nice) . I'm posting this because when I looked through previous reviews someone has made almost exactly the same comments about the egg salad and crab in the past and the poor service in the bar and restaurant are also frequent minus points raised. After the really good welcome and the pristine cleanliness of our room we were quite surprised that everything in the bar and restaurant was so below par. This is not an establishment where the kitchen are battling with new dishes every day, there is an "Autumn Menu" which remains constant for several weeks, so it should not be beyond them to get adequate supplies in and serve the food reasonably quicky. The evening was rounded off with coffee back in the bar, where the barmaid had now presumably finished her shift and was parading around in her raincoat talking loudly on her mobile phone, somewhat spoiling the ambiance.

Next morning the reception staff were lovely and full of apologies for the problems the night before. ( though this was a little marred by the receptionist telling me that most vegetarians eat fish!!!!!). We did not have breakfast at the hotel as we were off shopping. We had breakfast at Cafe Rouge, where the service was very friendly and efficient - perhaps HDV could take a few lessons from them.

I would have rated the whole experience as "average" had it not been the prompt and positive response to the complaint.

Room Tip: Go for a superior room, the bathrooms are fantastic.
  • Stayed: October 2012, travelled as a couple
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Thank Higgle
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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769 - 775 of 1,012 reviews

Reviewed 20 October 2012

A disappointing visit. We had a room at the back which overlooks the back courtyard. Having asked for a quiet room we did not get one. There was a heater or air conditioning unit outside which kept us awake most of the night. The reception staff were unhelpful in responding to our concerns. Also room was very dusty.

  • Stayed: October 2012, travelled as a couple
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5  Thank BEVER1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 10 October 2012

We booked dinner, bed and breakfast for a special occasion and chose to stay in a junior suite. The room was beautifully clean, the bed was extremely comfortable and both the monsoon shower and the twin baths were lovely. I am not usually a fan of baths in bedrooms but somehow HDV pulls this off - perhaps it was the extra touches of the extra wall TV for viewing from the bath and the side table for drinks! We were shown to our room so did not experience the problems some reviewers have mentioned in finding their allocated room. Both dinner and breakfast were excellent. Would definitely stay here again or try other HDVs.

Stayed: October 2012, travelled as a couple
Thank austrax
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 6 October 2012 via mobile

We had a one night stay for a whole £99 thanks to a deal and it was as good as you would expect from HDV. I had eaten there before but not stayed and hadn't realised how large the accommodation areas were. We had the Villa Maria room which was lovely and overall it was the usual high quality experience you expect. And a bargain!

  • Stayed: August 2012
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1  Thank throwingmuse
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 6 October 2012

Ive read about dinner bead and breakfast etc on trip advisor for around £149....we were charged £155 for just bed and breakfast and a free glass of wine. We were upgraded but the TV was hazey, we couldnt get BBC 1, and in the morning when we had showers the glass panel door almost collapsed on us, as it was unsafe, and loose. When we reported the faults to the staff on check out they werent that bothered...,so wont stay again, Cant understand how it gets good reviews.

Room Tip: They operate all sorts of deals and differing rates so be carefull, weve heard of better rates than...
  • Stayed: October 2012, travelled as a couple
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Thank freddy067
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 28 September 2012

Recently stayed at this hotel-the staff were friendly and helpful,the hotel and rooms were spotlessly clean. Location is good-a few minutes walk into Cheltenham and there is parking at the hotel. We had an Autumn break offer -paid £149 for dinner bed and breakfast and we had £20.00 each towards our meal plus a free glass of house wine plus a free room upgrade. The food was fantastic-the steaks are excellent. The room we had was lovely and large, and quiet as it was at the back of the hotel.
Watch out for the resident 'spy' from GCHQ who will tell you he can't tell you what he does for a living as it is top secret! However, he forgot to put on his 'Harry Potter invisibility cloak' whilst he was eating his boiled eggs and neatly cut crusts off toast soldiers!

  • Stayed: September 2012, travelled as a couple
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Thank debbie274
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 25 September 2012 via mobile

Another excellent hotel in the du vin chain.
The roll tap bath is just wonderful and the beds are always so comfortable.
Breakfast cooked to order - excellent.
Hotel set in the Montpellier area of Cheltenham - short walk to friendly pubs & restaurants.
Will definately return.

  • Stayed: September 2012
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Thank meganhughes
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 Cheltenham

Address: Parabola Rd, Cheltenham GL50 3AQ, England
Region: United Kingdom > England > Cotswolds > Cheltenham
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Spa Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #5 of 23 Hotels in Cheltenham
Price Range: £94 - £199 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4 star — Hotel du Vin Cheltenham 4*
Number of rooms: 49
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Formerly the Carlton Hotel and located in the chic Montpellier district of this historic spa town. Hotel du Vin Cheltenham offers forty nine bedrooms and suites, all decorated in inimitable Hotel du Vin style. The wonderfully spacious public areas centered around a showpiece spiral staircase, include a trademark Bistro with extensive al fresco dining, both a Champagne and Sinners Enclosure Bar, beauty treatment rooms and private dining rooms. The general manager is Chris Thompson. ... more   less 
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