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“Most enjoyable sea interlude”
Review of Wentworth Hotel

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Wentworth Hotel
Ranked #1 of 4 Hotels in Aldeburgh
Certificate of Excellence
Stockholm, Sweden
Level Contributor
25 reviews
21 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 15 helpful votes
“Most enjoyable sea interlude”
Reviewed 29 July 2014

My wife and I spent two nights at the Wentworth Hotel recently and thoroughly enjoyed the experience. We decided to stay in Aldeburgh as we had tickets for the final concert in this year's Aldeburgh Festival at the Snape Maltings, just a few miles away, and we wanted to see a little of the town that is so closely associated with the great composer and founder of the festival, Benjamin Britten. The Wentworth, a hotel owned and run by the same family since 1920, was an obvious choice, and it turned out to be a good one! Our room, which overlooked Aldeburgh's shingle beach, was quiet and comfortable and the bathroom was spotlessly clean. We dined both nights in the hotel and the quality of the food and the service was excellent. There is no lift in the hotel, but there are five rooms on the ground floor. I discovered that too late so it was a laborious climb up to our room on the second floor. There are binoculars for use by guests in some of the sea view rooms. Not in ours, or if there was I didn't find them. No matter, I could gaze at the grey dawn breaking over sea and shingle, hearing Britten's haunting Sea Interlude from Peter Grimes in my head. But didn't as I was fast asleep in a very comfortable bed. We struggled down eventually for the full Suffolk breakfast. The Wentworth is a great hotel. We'll be back.

  • Stayed July 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank David H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
james_wentworth, General Manager at Wentworth Hotel, responded to this review, 31 July 2014
Thank you for your review. I am delighted to read that you enjoyed your stay at the hotel.

Unfortunately we do not have a lift but the five ground floor rooms are spacious and well appointed and two of them still have a sea view.

I'm sorry you did not find the binoculars. I asked the housekeeping staff to check all seafacing rooms and all binoculars seem to be present. I'm glad you enjoyed the view nonetheless.

We look forward to welcoming you back to the hotel and thank you again for your comments
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646 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
  • Sleep Quality
  • Rooms
  • Service
  • Value
  • Cleanliness
Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (239)
Date | Rating
  • English first
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English first
London
Level Contributor
67 reviews
22 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 130 helpful votes
Reviewed 28 July 2014

One of my long term rules of thumb is never, ever go back to a place; it is never as good as you think it is. I break it for restaurants where I get superb service and food and as often as I am impressed by a return visit I am disappointed. Mrs B thinks I am just a little bit OCD but as the parking warden of fate comes closer to the illegally parked car of life I am tending to listen more to my wife and venture back to places.
And so we came back to Aldeburgh, this time sans rain to enjoy our wedding anniversary at the Wentworth. We set off in high spirits for a great two hour drive and decided to do some shopping in a town that is well known for quirky shops. Lunch was fish and chips on the pebble beach followed by a pint and a walk. Our mood was still high when we drove over to the Wentworth at about 4.00 pm; we didn’t notice the black cloud hanging over the hotel as we arrived.
First problem was the Sunday lunch crowd were hanging on longer than anticipated and the hotel car park was full. Into reception to ask what to do, to be told that it was “unfortunate” but not unusual and it was suggested that we drive a little distance to park our car and then come back. We tried that and I have to say we tried to find a parking place for about an hour with no luck. Then on driving back to the hotel we saw a car moving out from a parking space and we nipped in. It is amazing how driving aimlessly around a town looking for somewhere to park can suck the life out of a day. Things didn’t improve in reception with a rather brusque lady who didn’t welcome us back or wish us happy anniversary – despite the fact that when booking I mentioned we were returning visitors and it was indeed that most joyous of days. No marks for that then.
The last time we had stayed in a room overlooking the sea and it was delightful. This room was on the town side and had some issues. Yes it was spotless and had all the stuff in that the other room had (apart from a view and binoculars of course) but it had all the stuff in a room half the size. It was very small, so small the TV was on a bracket on the wall. The bathroom while adequate was again smaller than our on suite at home. My wife didn’t like the décor; she thought the colours and patterns were too busy for a bedroom; it didn’t bother me.
The crowning glory of the place last time was the food and we were quite keen to eat so at 6.30 we were in the bar ready for a drink and a view of the menu. The bar was empty when we arrived and even after heavy bell ringing no one appeared so off I went to find a bar person. By the time I got back a barman was operating and several couples were waiting for service. I don’t know if it’s nice or not to be the youngest people in a room, we have reached that age when it isn’t unusual that we are the oldest people in the room but tonight we were the youngsters. A smell of naphtha mixed with lavender issued forth from many of our fellow guests and I pointed out to the present Mrs B that at least we wouldn’t have problems with rap parties or our fellow guests trying to sell us illegal drugs – knitting patterns perhaps but drugs – no.
Menus arrived and again while the service can only be described as brusque it was efficient and we were seated for dinner by 7.15. We said to our waitress who was professional but distant how much we enjoyed our meal last time and she said the thing that made that black cloud a little bigger, “Oh he left and we have a new Chef now.” Oh dear.
The menu was not as good as last time and I thought they were cheating a bit by having a supplement on everything I wanted to eat – but then I think they had a supplement on a good 40% of the menu; it certainly felt that way. The wine list was as good as last time but prices had increased, but then again prices had increased everywhere. Now here is the strange thing I can only remember three things about the food; I had three courses and I can’t remember what they were. The first thing I remember is that I had some celeriac mash with my main course, which I think was meat. The celeriac mash wasn’t; it was mash sitting on a slice of celeriac which was undercooked, watery and tepid. It wasn’t downright disgusting but it was as close as I want to get on a Sunday night. Then both starter and main course were really terribly under seasoned. Nothing tasted of much and that leads me to remembrance number three, it was all lukewarm. The fact that the plates were cold might have had something to do with it but this was not hot food. I can’t even remember what pudding I had. My wife had fish which was over cooked and scallops which were under done. I know the modern thing is for scallops to be cooked pink, but these were very under and again had little flavour and were tepid. So disappointing to say the least and we retired to bed early not a little deflated.
A goods night sleep was spoiled at some ungodly (for a holiday) hour by the sound of the dustbin men whose witty and colourful banter, along with the reversing beep of the health and safety horn awoke us on the Monday morning. At least we got breakfast this time and no one can spoil a full English can they. Well only if they try very hard. The Wentworth made a great deal on its menu about using local produce and it is something I applaud however it is only worth doing if that is an improvement on what you can get in say Waitrose. I was disappointed in the bacon and the sausage but the egg was fine and I can’t remember the rest so it didn’t offend me. At least the plates were warm this time, but the coffee was poor and the toast was burned. We checked out after spending more than we anticipated (bar and wine bill) and Mrs B said those words she so seldom utters – “You were right, we really shouldn’t go back to places”.
Now, it could well be that we got the Wentworth on an off night and that most of the time the food is well seasoned and hot. But with respect, that isn’t the point; I don’t care if it’s perfect 99% of the time I want it perfect when I visit, and it wasn’t. I detected a lack of attention to detail in the kitchen and I don’t think this chef is a patch on the last one. Would I go back? Not in a million years because I can get better and cheaper than this closer to where I live. Will this bother the management at all? I doubt it; they had a busy hotel serving people who obviously enjoyed what they provided and as every review on this website it is subjective and is based around a whole experience. If we had been welcomed warmly and parked up first time, if we had a bigger room or friendly waiting staff or even if the barman had been on duty when I wanted a drink would I have been so disappointed? We will never know but it does show how an experience can be spoilt by a weak link in the process – and an underperforming chef of course.

  • Stayed May 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
5 Thank brighouse55
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Northampton, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
70 reviews
29 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 35 helpful votes
Reviewed 23 July 2014

My friend and I stayed earlier this week for two nights....we wished we could have stayed longer. The hotel was lovely. It has an enviable position in the town, just a little away from the main shops etc to ensure quiet but overlooking the sea with gardens and two lounges, one very cosy and the other light and sunny, facing the beach. The bar area also opens onto the terrace. The food in the restaurant was excellent. The staff were quietly attentive. The general ambience in the hotel was relaxed, genteel and unpretentious but everything of high quality. Our room was on the second floor with a superb view and the binoculars in the room were a thoughtful touch. The bathroom was small but modern with a very good shower facility. Well done to all and many thanks. I would love to return.

Room Tip: 34. Second floor but spacious, excellent view. A good fan was in the room for warm nights.
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  • Stayed July 2014, travelled with friends
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Thea99
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
james_wentworth, General Manager at Wentworth Hotel, responded to this review, 27 July 2014
Thank you for leaving a review. It is pleasing to read that you would have liked to stay longer.

Your comments regarding the cuisine, the staff and the ambience are greatly appreciated.

I am delighted to read you want to return and we hope to have the pleasure of welcoming you back

Many thanks again for your comments
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
United States
Level Contributor
35 reviews
19 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 58 helpful votes
Reviewed 17 July 2014

I traveled with my 84 year old mother to attend the Benjamin Britten Festival. Unfortunately, she is not great at steps and we were on the second floor (which in U.S. standards, is the third floor.) As the hotel was booked solid, we were unable to change rooms. Everything else was fine. Very nice breakfast, exceedingly kind help. We were there Fathers Day weekend and the dining and sitting rooms were filled to excess, but I trust this was due to the holiday.

Room Tip: Worth a little more to have an ocean view!
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  • Stayed June 2014, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Rooms
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank KJ39
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
james_wentworth, General Manager at Wentworth Hotel, responded to this review, 20 July 2014
Thank you for leaving a review. I do hope you stay with us again and that we are able to get you in a room on the first or ground floors.

Fathers Day is a very busy time for us but the restaurant is full nearly every Sunday as it is very popular amongst residents and non-residents alike. The sitting rooms have a lovely relaxing atmosphere and are again very popular.

I do hope we have the pleasure of welcoming you back to the hotel and thank you again for taking the time to comment
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Essex
Level Contributor
99 reviews
30 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 103 helpful votes
Reviewed 15 July 2014

A lovely hotel in a wonderful location opposite the beach. The whole feel of the hotel is relaxed and genteel without being pretentious. Aldeburgh itself is quiet and unassuming with an air of sophistication. A good choice to celebrate my husbands birthday.

Our sea facing room was on the first floor and was nicely decorated. It did however have a small bathroom but as we were only there for the one night, it didn't trouble us too much. As is often the case, the hairdryer is fixed to the bathroom wall, so you may want to bring your own.

The bedding was of a good standard and the pillows were good. We asked for an ironing board and fresh milk for our tea and these were quickly brought to our room.

Our afternoon was spent relaxing with a Pimms (or two) on the hotel's terrace, before taking a walk along the beach. I have to say that the Pimms was excellent and had all the trimmings!

Our room tariff included dinner and I'd already requested a table in the conservatory. The meal was good but the chef had put his own twist on Creme Brûlée, which wasn't to our liking. I did mention this on my feedback form and I was informed that it's going back to the original presentation.

We slept well and had the same table for breakfast as the previous evening. The breakfast was good with various choices.

All in all a very relaxed stay, in a comfortable hotel, with courteous staff.

We look forward to a return visit.

Room Tip: We had a sea facing room, which wasn't the largest of rooms, but was compensated by the views...
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  • Stayed May 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Location
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank HOL150
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
james_wentworth, General Manager at Wentworth Hotel, responded to this review, 17 July 2014
Thank you for leaving a review

I am glad you enjoyed your stay with us and hope your husband enjoyed the night away for his birthday.

The Pimms is certainly a must on the terrace at this time of year and the fresh mint and Suffolk strawberries add to the experience.

We too look forward to your return visit

Best wishes
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Wenhaston, United Kingdom
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
Reviewed 11 July 2014

we booked for supper several weeks ago. On arrival we went to bar and ordered our drinks. the waitress appeared with 2 menus and said she would bring more( there were 6 of us), she never did appear again. After sitting for quite a long time a member of our party asked if we could order as we seemed to have been forgotten. The barman(very nice) took our order but then disappeared. now 45 minutes after our table was booked for, we went through to restaurant and was told by a member of staff we were supposed to have been told to come through when we were ready.(We were not told this). We were then given a free bottle of wine as an apology which was a very nice gesture and a soft drink for those driving. Starters arrived and an apology from waitress, mains arrived, very tasty, then we waited and waited and waited. Waitresses chatting to other customers whilst we were forgotten again!!!! No one cleared our main course plates and we had to ask for coffees. When we came to pay our bill the receptionist asked if we had enjoyed our evening. when we explained why not, her response was, "well we were busy this evening". Not really a good response when there were alot of staff working and it is summer!

  • Stayed July 2014, travelled with friends
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank mel c
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
james_wentworth, General Manager at Wentworth Hotel, responded to this review, 17 July 2014
Thank you for your review. I am sorry for the evening you experienced recently. We did have a busy peak time on this evening meaning that a lot of guests came in at once and admittedly this put pressure on the staff and mistakes were made.

I gauged from speaking to you on the night that you are regular diners at the hotel and I do hope you therefore know that this is not our usual level of service.

I hope the wine acted as some compensation for an evening that should have been enjoyed more by yourselves.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Norwich, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
32 reviews
9 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 23 helpful votes
Reviewed 9 July 2014

Hotel in superb location just across the road from Aldeburgh's shingle beach and local fishermen's shacks. Staff friendly and efficient, attractively furnished and comfortable public areas, spotless table linen and faultless food. Our sea facing bedroom was very comfortable and well equipped, right down to a pair of binoculars to view the passing shipping and wildlife! We were able to park the car in the hotel car park on arrival, and forgot it for the next two days as we explored the area on foot. Well worth a repeat visit to this lovely unspoiled area of Suffolk.

  • Stayed July 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank Liz J
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
james_wentworth, General Manager at Wentworth Hotel, responded to this review, 11 July 2014
Thank you for your review. I am pleased you were able to use the hotel as a base to explore the local area. Our private car park is certainly a bonus and moreover the seaview can be enjoyed with the binoculars from a large amount of our seafacing bedrooms.

The linen we also feel gives us a point of difference and it is pleasing to read your comments about the staff and food

I hope we can welcome you back to the hotel next time you are in the area

Thank you again
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Additional Information about Wentworth Hotel

Property: Wentworth Hotel
Address: Wentworth Road, Aldeburgh IP15 5BD, England
Phone Number:
Region: United Kingdom > England > East Anglia > Suffolk > Aldeburgh
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Beverage Selection Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Suites Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 4 Hotels in Aldeburgh
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): £££
Hotel Class:3 star — Wentworth Hotel 3*
Number of rooms: 35
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The Wentworth is a country house style hotel right on the seafront in the coastal town of Aldeburgh. It has many seafacing bedrooms and provides the ideal getaway for the discerning couple. Gardens in the summer and cosy fires in the winter provide comfortable places to enjoy the atmosphere of this charming hotel. Couples, families and the business traveller are all welcome at this family owned hotel, now in its 3rd generation of ownership ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Wentworth Hotel Aldeburgh, Suffolk

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