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“Never again - nie wieder”
Review of Melrose House

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Melrose House
Ranked #97 of 556 London B&B and Inns
Certificate of Excellence
Frankfurt, Germany
Level Contributor
3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
“Never again – nie wieder”
Reviewed 15 October 2012

I am very sorry to say that I cannot recommend this B&B as it does not hold what it promises. Overall, we made more bad than good experiences. When we arrived, we were surprised how small the room was (room 9 in the Garden House) so that we did not have enough space for our luggage. This cannot be seen on the website. Additionally, the floor and the carpet were not cleaned everywhere, but what was more disgusting was that there were at least 10 spiders in the room. There was even one nearly dead spider in one of our beds under the blanket. When we complained about the inadequate cleanliness and the amount of spiders we were simply told that “it is spider time”. That was true, however, if the room had been cleaned properly the same day of our arrival – as we were told – the numbers of spiders would have been much smaller. We even found more spiders on the following days.
The room was cleaned the second day again which was fine. During the first two nights of our stay – we stayed there for five nights – there was also a terrible noise from the room next to us when other guests used the shower. It was so loud that we could not sleep any longer. This was especially annoying when the guests took their shower at 5.30 a.m. due to an early leave (comment from Frances’ assistance instead of an excuse: “We cannot tell our guests when they should take their shower”.). We then asked for switching to another room but Frances could not provide one as she was fully booked. So I asked for a discount rate as the noise was unacceptable, but she said that we already had a discount rate (which she did not mentioned before) and offered us telephone numbers of other B&Bs where we could sleep instead! So instead of saying she will do everything to make sure that the noise will be removed and that she is sorry about it she said that other guests never complained about it and was not willing to reduce the price for the room. In the end she reduced the daily rate, but it would have given us a much better feeling if she did it right from the start. As if by a miracle the noise was away on the third day. In turn, after the third night the service decreased significantly: the tea bags were not refilled anymore, used tea cups and cans were not changed regularly, after the fourth night we did not get new toilet paper, and the towels were the same even though we threw them on the floor for cleaning. It might be possible that they were washed, nonetheless it is astonishing to get the same ones again. The bed lines were not changed during our whole stay even though it was written that they are changed after three or four nights. Breakfast was good if everything was supplied, however one day sausages were out, another day it was yoghurt and again another day bananas (how could this work if you order in advance?). Very often guests themselves had to ask for food replenishments or for fresh coffee, this did not happen automatically. Both Frances and her assistance did not smile very often, and one had the feeling to bother both when asking for something. Except for Frances’ husband they were not as friendly as advertised on the website. What impacted the stay also was that the house has been under construction for years now and that the ground floor was full of building material, so that this area looked a little bit messy. Overall, these were small annoyances only, but in sum it made our stay very unpleasant. I can now fully understand the negative comments of my predecessors and cannot recommend this place.

  • Stayed October 2012, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
3 Thank Desiree222
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
melrosehouse, Owner at Melrose House, responded to this review, 24 October 2012
I am sorry we did not get rid of the spiders, however whilst they are rather creepy they do keep our garden free of undesirable insects that destroy our roses, and it is impossible to keep spiders and other insects out of ground floor rooms that open onto a garden!
Please be assured our rooms are thoroughly cleaned every day. The bedding is changed every 3/4th day, and I apologise if this was not carried out and have brought it to the attention of my housekeeper.
Our breakfasts are well recommended, and there is plenty of choice should items have been consumed by early risers.
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139 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
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  • Location
  • Rooms
  • Service
  • Value
  • Cleanliness
Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (13)
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English first
Birmingham, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
7 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
Reviewed 21 September 2012

My husband and I have just returned from a 2 night stay at Melrose House and are already discussing our plans to return. We were made to feel so welcome by the lovely Frances. Our room (room 10) was beautiful!! Recently modernised with en suite and a garden room with access to the garden through one door and a side entrance to the street through another. The latter was extremely convenient as it meant we didn't have to walk through the house.

The room was spotlessly clean and there were even free toiletries which we didn't expect from a B&B.

The breakfast was delicious and there was plenty on offer. The location was perfect- we'd previously read reviews regarding the distance from Penge East train station!! 10-15 minutes?! Nope it took us no more than 5 minutes.... My husband joked he could have crawled there in less than 15 minutes lol. It was a 15 minute train journey to Victoria and from there we managed to get to all the major attractions in 5-10 minutes.

Frances was so friendly and helpful. I caught a chill and we requested an extra blanket! Nothing was too much trouble!

The area was lovely and quiet and we were so happy that we didn't stay at a noisy inner city hotel. Melrose House was so much better than a hotel!!

Thank you Frances for allowing us to stay in your beautiful home and making us feel so welcome.

  • Stayed September 2012
    • Value
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Helpful?
2 Thank mrsnibblet
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Keflavík, Gullbringusysla, Iceland
Level Contributor
11 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed 10 August 2012

I really loved this place, i stayed over there for 9 days with my girlfriend and we fellin love with the house, the staff and everything. The rooms are fantastic, the included breakfast is magnificent, having free wifi is a huge plus. The walk to penge east station is not long at all, unless you are carrying heavy bags, but taking a taxi is no problem as well. This place is definetly worth every single penny, frances was lovely, giving tips and advices on everything, from train times to routes, or ideas on what to do. The distance from downtown is not great, only one train, and one trip on the underground and you are good to go, definetly worth it.
I would reccomend this place to anyone, doesnt really matter if it is a family, if you are travelling solo, staying long or short time, the place is just fantastic!

  • Stayed July 2012, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
2 Thank DanielIcelander
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
melrosehouse, Owner at Melrose House, responded to this review, 13 August 2012
Thank you for your kind review, and we hope you will stay with us again in one of our lovely new rooms, and also enjoy one of our typical english breakfasts in our new dining rooms.
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London, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
5 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
Reviewed 12 July 2012

Unfortunately the owner, Frances, is not really interested in being a B&B hostess and seems less than keen on her poor guests. I imagine people will come and stay because it's in London and is reasonably priced, but it's not a happy experience. Breakfast is usually a 'help yourself' buffet, but there is rarely enough to go round. I felt so sorry for American and Canadian visitors, staying for some time and not very glad to be there, who had the meagre scrapings of breakfast and for the ill gentleman who wasn't allowed to be given food in his room. Perhaps things will improve when the interminable extension is finally finished: meanwhile hammering and drilling accompanies breakfast and one feels surrounded by beds, mattresses and piled up spare furniture. It's a convenient location and the house could be lovely, if only one felt welcome!

Room Tip: If you can book room 2 with the large separate bathroom on the first floor, it seems to be about the...
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  • Stayed April 2012, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
3 Thank Wendy B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
melrosehouse, Owner at Melrose House, responded to this review, 13 August 2012
I am surprised that this guest did not ask for a replenishment of the breakfast food as we would have been happy to comply, and our breakfasts are always very substantial.
We do not supply "buffet" food (only for cold food such as breads, pastried, yoghurts, freh fruit etc.), but each individual guest is asked for their hot food order when come into the breakfast room and there is a menu clearly displayed on the wall.
There was new furniture requiring storage and they have been stored elsewhere awaiting the completion of the three new rooms. Room 10 is finished and is a very pretty room with its own private garden sitting room.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Tauranga, New Zealand
Level Contributor
39 reviews
13 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 18 helpful votes
Reviewed 12 July 2012

If you take the time to read the hotels website you are lead to believe (by reading the access statement found under the 'rooms link') that renovations were to be completed by Spring 2010, but in fact they are still on going. I believe the dining room is being relocated to the basement and the present dining room is going to be 2 new bedrooms. You are led to believe there is a conservatory and a sitting room to use but the conservatory is full of other stuff moved there while renovations are taking place, so there is nowhere to go other than your bedroom. I found this frustrating as I was one of 10 people in my group and we had nowhere to be together. The website also states that there is a personal safe in each room which is true but NONE of them work. The website also states that each room has a chest of drawers however in the 3 rooms I saw (and I was in room 2) this was not the case unless you call a bedside cabinet a chest of drawers. Speaking for myself I found this really frustrating as for the 2 of us ( single ladies) with 2 large suitcases it was not possible to unpack our suitcases for our 8 night stay. I did find that although room 2 has a lovely big bathroom for its sole use it is ACROSS the landing and during the night rather painful having to find a key in the dark to unlock it and it used a different lock than the bedroom. Thankfully because we knew everyone else staying in the house during our 8 nights we decided after a couple of nights to leave it open all night, however you wouldn't want to do this if you didnt know the other occupants, as we left all our toiletries in there.
There was a breakfast menu on the inside of the bedroom door but I didnt find that it was all on offer, however everything I had was delicious and I was aware that Frances (the owner) was having to do all the cooking as her cook had walked out on her. When Frances was asked for an extra yogurt one morning ( as I had not got one) she was not very happy to replenish supplies to make sure all 10 of us got the same. Fresh fruit was supplied (not fruit salad as the website says), however I was only lucky enough to get a banana twice. Knowing Frances was stressed I was reluctant to ask for more fruit, but it wasnt enough for 10 of us. But as I said what I did get was lovely.
If you are planning on spending alot of time in London it is important to know that it was a 10 min walk to Penge East train Station and an 18 min train ride to Victoria Station and from there you can take the underground stations to all the London Sites, so be prepared for this. It would be valuable to have a train timetable so you don't miss trains at the end of the day as it does mean you can spend alot of time waiting for the next train as they are not very regular in the evenings/night.
It is at least a 15-20 minute walk to the nearest group of shops but when you get there we found that the pub "Moon and Stars" was good place for a cheap pub meal for all 10 of us. Due to its distance away we only went there 3 out of the 10 nights and chose to eat in London before returning to the BnB as it was not situated 'on the way' to the BnB.
Sadly I did not find Frances friendly or helpful, even when I asked her for clean cups for our room, or for some extra milk for my parents or when a phone was required to make an outside call (note, the phones in the rooms only run between rooms). I felt that Frances was very stressed and unfriendly and did not appreciate any interuptions/requests. Hopefully the 8 nights we were there was not typical of her normal manner. I would suggest Frances updates her website so others dont expect more than what she truly has.

Room Tip: Room 3 was the nicest room for a couple. Rooms 4 and 5 have sloping ceilings and it is very easy to...
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  • Stayed May 2012, travelled with friends
    • Value
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    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
1 Thank MelBid
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Cologne, Germany
Level Contributor
23 reviews
8 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 15 helpful votes
Reviewed 10 June 2012

Melrose House is an interesting building - there are still many features of a victorian family home left. The landlady looks after you in a friendly and businesslike way, which I found very comfortable. Everything needed for our stay was provided and our questions were answered in a helpful manner. Breakfast was good. I would stay there again if the occasion should arise. I thought it was very good value for money. We did not visit central London, but we walked up to Penge East Station which is only a 5 minute walk away.

  • Stayed May 2012, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
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Helpful?
Thank siket
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Atlanta, Georgia
Level Contributor
5 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed 23 April 2012

The Melrose House was in such a quiet neighborhood with a 7 minute walk to two different train stations (Penge East and New Beckingham). Depending on where you were going for the day, it was easy to get there from one of the two stations. The owner, Frances, was so sweet to show us on her huge map in the foyer exactly which train to take and where to change trains to get to our destinations. Our daughter was with us for the first 3 days and they brought in a bed for her to use and removed it when she went to her student exchange location. The breakfast each morning was to die for ~ she is an excellent cook and I have missed the wonderful croissants and my husband misses the cooked to order eggs and bacon. If we ever go baack to London, we will definitely stay at Melrose House again. Great location out of the hussle and bussle of the city!

Room Tip: You can view each of the rooms on their web site before you book, so you can choose the best one for...
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  • Stayed March 2012, travelled on business
    • Value
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    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank jbbozeman01
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Melrose House

Property: Melrose House
Address: 89 Lennard Road | Penge, London SE20 7LY, England
Phone Number:
Region: United Kingdom > England > London
Amenities:
Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #97 of 556 B&Bs / Inns in London
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): £
Hotel Class:4 star — Melrose House 4*
Number of rooms: 8
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Victorian house in quiet area of South London, within easy reach of the centre by train (15 minutes), and a short walk to the station. A pleasant area to return to after the noise of the city centre. All rooms are decorated to a high standard and have ensuite or private bathrooms, and a full english breakfast is included in the price. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
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