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“A wonderful romantic break!”
Review of Hotel du Vin

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Hotel du Vin
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed 2 February 2014

After a hiccup last November when we were unable to stay due to a fault with the water supply, the hotel kindly offered us complimentary accommodation in early 2014. We had a superb suite (split over 3 levels, double roll top bath, wet room, lots of nice touches including Miller Harris toiletries .. I could go on!) and a bottle of bubbles to greet us too which was much appreciated. We had dinner in the restaurant which was superb. My moules were excellent (no weeding out the potentially dodgy ones!), mains and deserts followed which were all without fault, accompanied by a lovely bottle of NZ Sauvignon Blanc. The staff couldn't have been more attentive despite a busy service that evening and indeed throughout our stay. We treated ourselves to breakfast in bed the following morning, a very rare indulgence which completed our magical romantic break. Thank you for a great stay and we'd love to return soon!

  • Stayed: January 2014, travelled as a couple
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Thank CEW74
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Phil C, General Manager at Hotel du Vin, responded to this reviewResponded 4 February 2014

Thank you for such great feedback following your stay last weekend. I am really pleased that you had such an enjoyable time and that the food and service was excellent throughout.

I do hope that you have the opportunity to return soon.

Regards,

Phil Cox

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438 - 444 of 803 reviews

Reviewed 1 February 2014 via mobile

A really lovely hotel - spotlessly clean, staff couldn't do enough to please and lovely ambiance. What a shame the food wasn't great. Not one of our party loved what they were given, four people didn't finish their steak because it was tough as old boots, and the desserts were positively mediocre - we've had better at motorway service stations. Breakfast looked more promising, but again - have had better on the motorway. I would definitely stay here again, but would probably eat out.

  • Stayed: January 2014
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Thank Lipscombe
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Phil C, General Manager at Hotel du Vin, responded to this reviewResponded 4 February 2014

Thank you for taking the time to pass on your feedback following your recent stay at Hotel du Vin Henley.

Whilst I am very pleased that you found the hotel clean and welcoming and the staff look after you very well during your stay, I am of course very concerned about your comments regarding the quality of the food and I am sorry that you did not enjoy your dining experience.

We take great pride in the quality of the food we serve and as such our Head Chef is talking to our meat supplier to try and understand why the steak would have been tough on this occasion. Likewise he is reviewing the standards of the desserts with the pastry chef to ensure we maintain the high standards our guests have been used to.

Once again, thank you for taking the time to share your comments and I am sorry that you did not have the best dining experience, but such feedback will allow us to review and amend any issues so that future guests are not impacted.

Regards,

Phil Cox

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Reviewed 11 January 2014

Really fabulous room we had , couldn't fault it, reception staff so helpful, restaurant staff not that attentive and bar prices are quiet high., saying that if could afford it would go back, the little touches in the room are lovely.

Room Tip: We stayed in Taylor's port suite, one word fabulous!
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  • Stayed: December 2013, travelled as a couple
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Thank Susan Y
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Phil C, General Manager at Hotel du Vin, responded to this reviewResponded 15 January 2014

Thank you for sharing your comments following your recent stay at Hotel du Vin Henley and I am really pleased to read that you had a good time and in particular loved the studio suite you stayed in. I am of course concerned that you felt the service could have been more attentive and I will ensure this is raised with my Bistro Manager in order to pass this feedback to the team and ensure there is progress made.

Once again, thank you for taking the time to post your review and I am pleased you had an enjoyable stay. I hope to be able to welcome you back again soon.

Regards,

Phil Cox

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Reviewed 9 January 2014

We have been visiting the Hotel Du Vin chain around the country for a number of years now - this was our first visit to the Henley on Thames Hotel. It was very nice, although it was not kept to our at the same standard of the others. The bedroom again was nice - they are usually lovely, little things were missing, trivial really but when you've had them you expect them - no shower caps or tissues in the bathroom, furniture that although not worn could really have done with a refresh. The reception and bar staff were wonderful, however the dining room staff both at breakfast and lunch were rather distracted - I had to go and ask to order! The breakfast buffet was extremely limited compared not only to other HdV's but also to other hotels and really not worth the money - the cooked breakfast is. The standard of food at lunch time was exceptionally high - service slow but quality good. All in all I was rather disappointed although this was probably down to my expectations rather than the hotel itself - it is nice, just not lovely.

  • Stayed: January 2014, travelled with family
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1  Thank WestCumbriaClaire
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Phil C, General Manager at Hotel du Vin, responded to this reviewResponded 15 January 2014

Thank you for taking the time to share your feedback following your recent stay at Hotel du Vin Henley and I totally agree with you that it is the little things that make the difference. We spend a lot of time focusing in the detail throughout the hotel in order to provide the best possible service and ambiance for our guests, and I am therefore sorry that certain elements were lacking when you stayed.

I have spoken with both my Head Housekeeper and Bistro Manager in respect of the comments you have raised and they will take time top refocus their teams in order to ensure our standards are being consistently achieved going forward.

I am pleased to read that you felt the food was of great quality and I will ensure my Head Chef is made aware of this.

Once again, thank you for your feedback and I do hope to be able to welcome you back to Hotel du Vin Henley again soon.

Regards,

Phil Cox

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 5 January 2014

This was the third Hotel Du Vin I had stayed in having had enjoyable stays at York and Bristol. This hotel was adequate but did not live up to expectation . We stayed in a superior room (Graham Beck)The pluses and minuses were as follows:
Pluses:
1. The public rooms were relaxed and comfortable
2. Whilst most of the staff lacked warmth, the notable exception was the restaurant manager - she was extremely helpful and personable.
3. The breakfast was excellent - the dinners were a little mixed - some good and some bland dishes.
4. Bathroom was pretty good, although it was in the eaves and not ideal for the tall! The shower was tepid, but this was fixed when we complained

Minuses:
1. We were on DBB package and my companion is a vegetarian. No veg main courses on our menu for the first night. The waiter checked with the kitchen and we were told that the chef could rustle up pasta and tomato sauce - not what you would expect from HDV. Better menu on second night.
2. Issues with the bill in the restaurant both nights. Strange that on DBB package you have to sign for a charge for the meal of £19.90, but were told this would be adjusted in the final bill. I made a fuss the first night and only signed for the items that would appear on my final bill.
3. The room was disappointing. Have stayed in equivalent rooms at two other HDV and this was by far the poorest.
4. No info pack in the room in spite of a notice on the wall by the bed referring to it. Had to ask about wifi. It was free, but worked so poorly that we didn't bother in the end
5. I was sent an email a couple of days before the visit offering an upgrade of room. I replied positively. This was the last I heard and were. It given an upgrade on arrival. It would be better if this was resolved before checking in so that you know what room to expect. I was disappointed that my expectation had been raised without it being followed through.
6. The bed and the pillows were not up to the usual extremely comfortable HDV standard

My conclusion is that this was an ok stay, but I do expect something special from HDV, which unfortunately this did not deliver.

Stayed: January 2014, travelled as a couple
1  Thank Simon G
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Phil C, General Manager at Hotel du Vin, responded to this reviewResponded 7 January 2014

Thank you for taking the time to share this constructive feedback following your recent stay at Hotel du Vin Henley. I am of course pleased to read that you enjoyed the general ambiance of the hotel, that you were well looked after by the restaurant manager and that the breakfast you had was of a high quality. However I am concerned that there were some aspects of your stay that did not meet your expectations and I am sorry that this was the case.

I have spoken with my head chef in respect of the consistency in production of the menu dishes to ensure that everything is seasoned correctly, similarly with the content of the Plat du Jour menu to ensure sufficient choice of good quality vegetarian dishes every night, as you experienced on the second night you dined with us.

We have a variety of differing room types and styles in Henley as we have adapted the spaces from the original brewery to create some unique and quirky rooms including some cosy rooms that extend into the eaves of the building and other suites that stretch over a number of floors giving some amazing space and original features. I am sorry that the room you stayed in was not totally suitable, but I have made a note on your profile not to allocate 'Graham Beck' or rooms similar when you book in the future.

The guest directories are currently being reviewed and as updates are required we have decided to remove the directories rather than display inaccurate information and instead direct guests to call reception for information. I will check that the wi-fi is working correctly in the area your room was located as this is the first time wi-fi has proved a problem since it was upgraded around 12 months ago. Thank you for bringing this to my attention and similarly thank you for your comments re the duvet and pillows which I will ensure is checked by my head housekeeper.

The offer of an upgrade you received prior to arrival is an option to be added to a stand-by list for an upgraded room type at a vastly reduced upgrade fee and I am pleased to say that around two thirds of people opting in have recently been awarded the upgrade on arrival. Unfortunately we cannot guarantee these discounted rates except on arrival assuming there is availability, but guests can of course book and guarantee the upgraded room types at the booking stage. I am sorry that you were not successful on this occasion.

Once again, thank you for taking the time to share your feedback and I do hope to be able to welcome you back to Hotel du Vin Henley in the future.

Regards,

Phil Cox

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Reviewed 4 January 2014

I regularly stay in Malmaison and have also enjoyed visits to the Cheltenham and Poole Hotel du Vins, so my partner and I were looking forward to celebrating his birthday in Henley. Whilst the hotel itself is sympathetically refurbished there were some quite big negatives about the experience. On arrival we were left standing at reception whilst another couple were being dealt with. No real problem waiting our turn but our arrival was not acknowledged at all despite two other members of staff sitting on the radiator behind reception. After a few minutes it was clearly our turn but we had no greeting or welcome to the hotel, just a terse 'what's the surname'. I was really surprised at the perceived lack of interest by the staff. Though it was 2.30 our room was not yet ready (that's fine) so we left our bag and did some shopping. On our return we got the key but our bag had not been taken up to the room. I wouldn't expect this in cheaper hotels, but the Hotel du Vin is at a higher end of the market and these small things are quite important. We found our own way to the room with our shopping. The room itself was fine and looked very presentable but the pillows were appallingly thin. They need replacing. We had dinner in the hotel. The bar staff were friendly but inexperienced - our glasses of champagne were spilled - but at least they got topped up. My partner enjoyed his dinner, but mine was a great disappointment. The cod with lentils was totally under seasoned, bland and flavourless. We retired to the bar for a cocktail (very nice) but when we went to pay we were left waiting for an age whilst the sole member of staff discussed the merits of individual whiskys with a diner. It would have been more polite to seek out someone to help us rather than leave us standing for over 15 minutes. The room was very hot and the aircon not very effective. We were also disturbed by a family with small children in the room above us, so I'm not convinced the soundproofing works well.
The location and building are very appealing but more work needs to be done on customer service. Finally, fifteen pounds for overnight Parking is quite steep and is taking advantage of a captive audience.

Stayed: January 2014, travelled as a couple
3  Thank Lexicles1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Phil C, General Manager at Hotel du Vin, responded to this reviewResponded 6 January 2014

Thank you for sharing your feedback following your recent stay at Hotel du Vin Henley and I am very concerned to read your comments. I will be speaking with the reception manager regarding the way you were welcomed, as we pride ourselves on the level of service we provide, which it seems was sadly lacking when you arrived. Similarly the lack of assistance with luggage or being shown to your room will be addressed.

I will ensure that my head chef is made aware of your feedback regarding the cod dish so that the preparation of this dish can be checked, but I am pleased to read that your husband's meal was to a high standard.

I am sorry that the bar tender could not get away from the guest he was dealing with to get the attention of one of his colleagues to speed up the process of getting your bill, and I will address this with the Bar Manager to ensure staff are focussed on all guest's needs and how to manage this type of situation in the future.

Once again, thank you for your valuable feedback and I hope to be able to welcome you back to Hotel du Vin Henley again in the future.

Regards,

Phil Cox

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Reviewed 2 January 2014

I made a late reservation for one night on 1st Jan 2014 and obtained what I thought was a great deal for £161 including a 3 course dinner in the bistro and breakfast in the morning, Having previously stayed at the Hotel du Vin in Brighton we had high expectations. Unfortunately, they were not met at Henley. First of all when we checked in we were advised that the hotel offers valet parking facilities at a cost of £15 which we accepted with little alternative (the nearest public car park is a fair walk away), but it would have been nice to have seen this facility offered on the website or with booking confirmation so . We had requested a room upgrade via the web site and would have been prepared to pay up to an additional £49 if a superior room or suite was available however the receptionist did not appear to be aware we had made this request which appeared rather odd and we were informed that there were no superior rooms available. The standard room we were allocated (named the Brown Brothers) was very basic and not of the standard we expected. In particular, the bathroom is tired to say the least, however, most importantly the bath water and shower over the bath was lukewarm and only just warm enough to bathe and shower with both last evening before dinner and this morning. The hand basin hot water was fine. There was no hotel information booklet in the room so information regarding meal times etc. was not readily available.
The menu in the room was for the previous evening (31st Dec) and we had to ask for the menu for 1st Jan. Dinner in the bistro was of a reasonable quality however the vegetables served with our rib eye steaks were cold. !
There are coffee and tea making facilities available in the room however the milk in the small carton in the fridge was decidedly "off" despite having a sell by date of 4th Jan 2014. We only discovered this whilst making a morning cuppa, however, they did deliver fresh milk to the room when informed.
We completed a guest survey and mentioned these issues to the receptionist at check-out as we felt the hotel management needs to be aware of such issues and make changes to maintain the high standard and reputation of the hotel chain. The receptionist loosely apologised but frankly did not seem too concerned,
Not the greatest experience which unfortunately has made us doubt if we will return to an Hotel du Vin and certainly made us doubt if we would ever recommend the hotel chain to friends or family.

Room Tip: Avoid the Brown Brothers,,
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  • Stayed: January 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
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3  Thank Hazel M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Phil C, General Manager at Hotel du Vin, responded to this reviewResponded 6 January 2014

Thank you for taking the time to share your feedback following your recent stay at Hotel du Vin Henley and I am sorry that certain aspects of your stay did not meet your expectations. All guest feedback is taken extremely seriously as we are passionate about the service and facilities in the hotel and I have therefore met with a number of my Heads of Department in order to resolve the issues going forward.

My maintenance manager has spent some time testing the water in Brown Brothers and run the hot water taps for some time in the bath, shower and sink but could not replicate the lack of hot water you experienced. I am sorry that this impacted on your stay. Based on your feedback he will also review the decor of the bathroom.

I am sorry that the stand by upgrade offered was not available when you checked in at reception as the room types were already booked.

In discussion with my head housekeeper, we checked a number of bedrooms to confirm which menus were in the rooms and I am very sorry that the room you stayed in was missed when the menus were being changed. Also, we will be contacting our milk suppliers to complain about the quality of product they have supplied given that the mini milk bottle was in date, and we store the milk in the kitchen fridges, it should not have been sour. I am sorry that this was the case but am pleased that this was rectified once you brought it to our attention.

I am pleased that the dinner service, food and ambiance were good, but am sorry that the vegetables were not as hot as they could have been. I do hope that the bistro team rectified this for you and I have spoken with my Head Chef about this matter.

Our valet parking service is advertised on our hotel website and is also included in bedroom reservation confirmations that are sent out when a booking is made. I am sorry if this was not prominent. The guest directories are currently being reviewed and as the current directories required updating it was decided to remove these from the rooms rather than display incorrect information, instead directing guests to call reception for any queries.

Once again, thank you for your feedback on trip advisor and the comment card you left in your room and I do hope to be able to welcome you back to Hotel du Vin Henley again soon.

Regards,

Phil Cox

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Hotel du Vin

Address: New Street, Henley-on-Thames RG9 2BP, England
Region: United Kingdom > England > Oxfordshire > Henley-on-Thames
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Centre with Internet Access Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Suites Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 8 Hotels in Henley-on-Thames
Price Range: £124 - £219 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4 star — Hotel du Vin 4*
Number of rooms: 43
Reservation Options:
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Also Known As:
Du Vin Hotel
Du Vin Henley On Thames

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