The hotel has been in decline for many years and so it was with great anticipation that we were looking forward to the new owners who already have a good reputation running 2 establishments in South Devon. A lot of money, time and effort has been spent in decorating and refurbishing the hotel but it is such a shame that the same amount of effort has not gone into service and the management of the staff. We had a family party for Sunday lunch and although the food was excellent the service was lacking and there did not appear to be any management of the staff, although there was a smart young man wandering around but not overseeing the restaurant staff, who in themselves were trying to do a good job. There were 3 small children in our party and instead of them being served first, so that their parents could get them settled with their food, they had to wait until well after the adults had started their meals. Although we were seated at 12.00 it took a long while to get served and one of the desserts had run out when the time came to order. It seemed that there was more priority in the bar area than the restaurant.
I don't know if the new owners have a permanent presence in the hotel, because it is needed. I am sure that it will all get sorted out in time, but with such anticipation of a new beginning for the hotel, it was a bit of a disappointment.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- The Luttrell Arms is a 3 star, 28 room hotel. Set in the medieval village of Dunster with its many interesting buildings, under the shadow of the Castle and within the Exmoor National Park. The privately owned 14th century Luttrell Arms is surrounded by beautiful countryside making it the ideal destination for that weekend break or midweek getaway. Stroll around the village, walk the moor, or just sit by a log fire in a building where hospitality has been a way of life for hundreds of years. Heritage "If you could bottle the air in the bar at the Luttrell Arms and sell it you'd clean up" so wrote a local journalist. The smell of logs burning on the fire, a hint of hops from the pints of ale, add to this the smell of something aromatic being cooked in the kitchen, and the most essential element - the smell of history, it oozes out of the walls which have stood for 800 years. There are many outstanding architectural features, the medieval hall with its hammer beam roof (room 17) and twelve light window. History seeps out of the blackened frames, which had their glass rattled loose as Cromwell’s gunners laid siege to Dunster Castle from a defended strong point at the end of the garden. Cromwell’s Commander, Col. Robert Blake walked the corridors of the hotel, it was then called the Ship Inn and was used as his headquarters throughout the siege of the castle. Also of note is some very fine plasterwork on the ceiling of the lounge downstairs, and the plaster over mantle in room 12, showing Actaeon being devoured by hounds. The Arms of Luttrell that we use today carry us back to a Gentleman of 1261, the crest takes us only back to 1621, but the supporters are directly derived from one of the Barons who coerced King John into sealing Magna Carta. A more modern visitor is Hercule Poirot. In "The Cornish Mystery" he confronts the murderer in one of the hotel’s bedrooms. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- The Luttrell Arms Hotel Dunster
- Luttrell Arms Hotel Dunster
- Luttrell Arms Dunster
- The Luttrell Arms Dunster, Somerset