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“Great break away”

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Malmaison Oxford Castle
Ranked #6 of 44 Hotels in Oxford
Certificate of Excellence
Bracknell, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
23 reviews
14 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 21 helpful votes
“Great break away”
Reviewed 24 April 2014

I have stayed a number of times at the Malmaison in Reading and it was my first visit to the Oxford for my wedding anniversary and i was not disappointed
the reception staff were very good and we could check in straight away.
We had booked a Sunday stopover which is great value and we had a standard room.
This was a nice room but unfortunately you cannot open any windows and the air conditioning did not work but they would very good and moved us to a room which used to be one of the old cells in the main block which i would recommend although you still cannot open the windows so did get stuffy.
Another thing i noticed is that the toiletries was not replaced on a daily basis
The restaurant overall was very good and the food was of good quality but the first night we were there the service was slow but being Easter Sunday i think they were struggling with staff but the next night was better.
The hotel is in a ideal location and there is a Prezzo just outside and a fab little cocktail bar just outside and also just round the corner to a square which has quite a few restaurants around it and near the shops.
ideal to go by train as the parking is about £25.00 per night and it is only about a 10 mins walk away.
I would recommend and will be back

Room Tip: if you want to be able to open the windows then i found out they are in the main hotel on the ground...
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  • Stayed April 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
Thank sharon s
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Paul W, General Manager at Malmaison Oxford Castle, responded to this review, 3 May 2014
Dear Sharon S,

Thanks for taking the time to review the hotel. I am pleased that overall you enjoyed your stay though apologise that the service you experienced was slow.

We hope to see you again soon, we always have great promotions direct on our website so please look out for these.

Warm Regards

Paul
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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2,823 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    3.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (652)
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English first
Leicester, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
24 reviews
14 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 14 helpful votes
Reviewed 23 April 2014

We stayed here on Easter Sunday. The hotel is visually very very impressive & a real treat awaits but there were a few things which individually are trivial but when you add them up on one visit made quite a difference and unfortunately disappointed us. We stayed in an impressive 5th floor 3 cell room, lovely appearance & a great bathroom, however the bed was so hard we hardly slept and there was a continuous noise which we assumed was from some form of air conditioning which we were unable to identify & therefore couldn't control. We booked to eat in the Brasserie, the staff were friendly & we were seated quickly. The staff were all busy and rushed around non stop taking away a relaxed atmosphere you would expect when eating out. Both our starters were expensive for what arrived, small portions minimal additions such as bread & salad. Our main course took forever to be served with the staff eventually apologising for the delay explaining that the kitchen was very busy. We were served standard frozen chips with our steak although we'd ordered hand cut chips & got charged £8 for two portions - mega mark-up, we didn't complain as we were too hungry to wait for anything to be changed. On checking out we were asked if we had enjoyed our stay, we confirmed the hotel was impressive but that we hadn't slept well, we received an apology but no acknowledgement that our comments would be looked in to. Should the management team of Malmaison Oxford take the opportunity to consider some of these comments I would suggest that with a little focus and greater attention to detail and importantly their customers, the first impressions given on entering this wonderful building could so easily make a good experience an exceptional one.

  • Stayed April 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank BACNAC
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Staines, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
12 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
Reviewed 22 April 2014

We stayed on the Sunday Stopover Deal which is great value. As others have said if you can stay in a cell room as they are really what this hotel is all about. The only issue I had with the room and it is quite a big one is that the bed was so hard. It was impossible to get a decent nights sleep as could not get comfortable we thought the old prison beds would have had more give in them than this.
The restaurant was pleasant but service was slow and there was no attention to detail. Lots of little things add up to make it spoil the occasion. Things like forgetting to give us the specials menu, No side plates for the bread board, oil and vinegar missing with bread, no spoon with spaghetti dish and then the wrong main course arriving so one of us had just about finished our meal when the other arrived.
Breakfast good but again just needed a bit more attention to the little things - coffee was not great looked like it had been left brewing for too long, quality of bread for toast poor, no teaspoons for the yoghurt and slow clearing plates from tables.
If they sort out these simple things this could so easily have been a great stay instead of just ok. That said when we checked out and asked about our stay they did remove the charge for the room upgrade from our bill to apologise but to be honest I would rather have had a great stay and paid the extra.

Would I recommend this hotel to others, yes if only for the fact that the conversion from prison to hotel is so well done and it is a nice hotel just needs to sort out the beds and the attention to detail in the restaurant

Room Tip: Pick a cell room
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  • Stayed March 2014, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
Thank Anne-Marie F
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Oxford, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
5 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed 22 April 2014

This was my second stay at Malmaison Oxford and it wasn't planned.

A friend of mine was visiting from the south coast and we'd decided to have lunch at the brasserie. It was a great meal; super friendly service, great food and even better cocktails. They didn't have our favourite cocktail on the menu but it didn't matter-they made them anyway and never let us have an empty glass on the table.

My friend really wanted to stay (we were celebrating some good news) so on the off chance we asked at the front desk if they had any rooms. Check in was quick, efficient and one of the warmest welcomes I've had at any hotel. The lady (Lauren, I think) was brilliant and even gave us a complimentary cocktail voucher as she knew we were celebrating! Such attention to detail!

The room was beautiful with a great view of the gardens which used to be the exercise yard. There were some fabulous features; natural brickwork, well fitted-out bathroom and the MOST comfortable bed EVER! We loved it!

Breakfast was equally fab - please, please try the eggs benedict. They're the best I've ever had. And, again, brilliant service.

All in all - this hotel is a 5* establishment and worth every single penny we paid. I can't recommend this hotel highly enough. Bravo Malmaison.

My friends comments: "quirky, unique, and every bit as luxurious as you would expect and more. The original cell is a must see and who wouldn't want a girls night out that ends in the place they filmed 'Bad Girls?!'"

  • Stayed April 2014, travelled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
1 Thank Sam P
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Paul W, General Manager at Malmaison Oxford Castle, responded to this review, 3 May 2014
Dear Sam P,

Thanks for popping back in to stay with us and for taking the time to review your experience. I am very pleased that you have been able to comment on our continued improvements in the hotel and hope you experience the same the next time you come.

Warm Regards

Paul
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Bristol
Level Contributor
3 reviews
Reviewed 21 April 2014

A very interesting hotel to stay at ! We stayed in a superior cell which was lovely although very dark. Fantastic bathroom with rainfall shower and huge bath tub, let down by the toiletries which consisted of shower gel ! With a bath like that bubble bath would have bee fantastic.

We ate in the brasserie and hadn't made a reservation which seemed to cause slight confusion and involved numerous members of staff. Once seated the service was brilliant the staff were very knowledgeable and wanted to impart there take about the hotel.

All of the staff encountered were very friendly and helpful.

  • Stayed April 2014
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Gemsie3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Colchester, United Kingdom
1 review
Reviewed 20 April 2014

Very good location and a quirky building let down by surly staff for whom everything seemed too much trouble.

Room was cold, heating didn't work, sink was faulty and the shower hose leaked badly.

Make sure you don't get a room downstairs as people from the bar and brasserie, which is open to the public came into our corridor multiple times each night to look at and try the the prison doors one of which was for our room.

We loved Oxford but would not stay at this hotel again.

Room Tip: Avoid downstairs rooms adjacent to the Bar and Brasserie.
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  • Stayed April 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Darren B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Paul W, General Manager at Malmaison Oxford Castle, responded to this review, 3 May 2014
Dear Darren B,

Thank you for taking the time to write your review, I am sorry that we failed to meet with your expectations.

I understand that my Operations Manager has spoken with you with regard to your feedback and hope that this has gone some way in alleviating your concerns that this is our usual level of feedback.

I do hope that you choose to visit with us again in the future.

Paul
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Cambridge
Level Contributor
21 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 11 helpful votes
Reviewed 18 April 2014

Lovely stay..... I stayed in a twin with my daughter for one night. We had some wonderful cocktails made by the very friendly and polite bar person. All the staff we encountered where extremely helpful and professional. I used the car park (worth every penny despite the price) and the doorman who looked after it was very polite. The only thing that took the edge off just a teeny bit was the limited little cartons of milk. Only four!! But a vast amount of tea and coffee (but only one hot chocolate?) I stayed in an economy hotel the previous weekend and there was lashings of milk provided. Plus the bath had a few unsavoury hairs in it. I was only there for one night so couldn't be bothered to ask for it to be re-cleaned. Back to the good stuff though.... Lovely toiletries, soft dressing gown and slippers and the decor is great too! All in all, I'd stay again.

Room Tip: We stayed in the Daniel Harris room. Spacious and surprisingly quiet despite being directly over the...
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  • Stayed April 2014, travelled with friends
    • Value
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    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Hatty25
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Malmaison Oxford Castle

Property: Malmaison Oxford Castle
Address: 3 Oxford Castle, Oxford OX1 1AY, England
Region: United Kingdom > England > Oxfordshire > Oxford
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Suites Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#5 Business Hotel in Oxford
#5 Luxury Hotel in Oxford
#9 Romantic Hotel in Oxford
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££
Hotel Class:4 star — Malmaison Oxford Castle 4*
Number of rooms: 95
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
If you're tired of doing hard time in run-of-the-mill hotels, it's a completely different story at our former gaol, Malmaison Oxford. Instead sip the coolest cocktails in the free world at MALBAR and enjoy an eclectic mix of classic dishes with a twist at the Brasserie, from freshly caught fish to the famous Mal Burger. Good behaviour will get you privileges like free Wi-Fi, drench showers, plasma TVs and and even toiletries that are just begging to be nabbed by light-fingered guests. This is one hotel in Oxford city centre where you'll be happy to get a long stretch. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Malmaison Oxford Castle Hotel Oxford
Malmaison Hotel Oxford

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