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“Grubby, dated rooms and very poor value for money. Total waste of time.”

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Billesley Manor Hotel
Reviewed 18 February 2012

The approach to Billesley manor was promising as the house looked impressive and the grounds lovely....however once inside it was a totally different story!! The first room we were shown to was based in the main house up flights of narrow, dark stairs. The room was absolutely hideous, I think the look they were going for was old fashioned 'chintz' but it was more house of horrors to be honest! Grubby wallpaper, mouldy windows, a poky bathroom with the most pitiful shower I have seen and a constant dribbling toilet. Nice.

We asked to be upgraded but were told they were full and offered another room in the barn, let's just say I have stayed in better travelodges....I particularly enjoyed the dead insects stuck on the net curtains, the stained carpets and scuff marks all over the walls.

Very dissapointing overall and, after much deliberation about whether to complain again (very embarrassed!) We decided to mention it one more time. At this point we were then offered an 'upgrade' to their sister hotel, the 4* luxury Walton hall. So, despite it being now late afternoon we decided to give it a shot, after all, it couldn't be much worse. How wrong we were!! On approach to Walton hall we Saw loads of cars on their way out and joked they were probably on their way to billesley....they probably were.

Needless to say we returned home that night and decided next time we want an experience like that we will go with travelodge. Save your money.

  • Stayed: February 2012
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2  Thank tb126
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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1,844 - 1,850 of 2,133 reviews

Reviewed 16 February 2012

When we arrived after 3pm they had no rooms ready to check-in and we had to wait until after 5pm for a room. The lady on reception was not particularly friendly or helpful. We were in room 14 at the top of the Manor house. Positives were a large bedroom and bathroom, nice views and comfy beds. Negatives were the filthy carpet which wasn't hoovered during our stay, the black mould on the inside of the windows and grit/dirt on the window ledges. The decor was very shabby ie wallpaper was peeling off and badly stained. The bathroom fittings were very old, had black mould all over the tiles and the bath enamel was badly chipped. The whole room seemed grubby and there were toothpaste splatters on the wall and sink tiles. The shower was appalling, just a hand set that went into a holder so there was little pressure and it went hot and cold during use. There was no thermostat so when the temperature fluctuated the water got scalding hot very quickly so I would go so far to say that it was dangerous, you couldn't let a child have a shower by themselves and I doubt an elderly person could get out of the way of the scorching water quick enough either. There was nowhere to put your toiletries other than on the toilet cistern or a tiny glass shelf. We wanted to move rooms but gave up as there was only one person on reception and the queue was taking ages.
They seemed to be woefully understaffed and there was little apparent management or organisation. At breakfast they ran out of butter, marmalade and even bread. All pretty basic stuff and it happened on more than one morning during our stay. The young waiting staff were very pleasant and coped well considering they appeared to have little if any management support or direction. There were a number of customers making complaints in the restaurant. The food at dinner was fine but again basic errors spoiled it. The mains were served lukewarm on cold plates and the puddings including the sorbet were served on hot plates! The food would have been good if it had been hot but if you're hungry you would need to order extra veg as the portions served with the mains were tiny, just a garnish really. Drinks are pricey, bottles of wine start from about £21 but there was a good choice, tea is £3.20, espresso £2.80 and Americano coffee £3.20. Three courses for dinner is £39.50.
Breakfast was a buffet which was ok but nothing special. We were horrified to see that the cereal dispenser, complete with cereal was stored sitting on the floor of a laundry cupboard which had been left open. Again, basic hygiene was ignored.
We wouldn't recommend this hotel to anyone and certainly wouldn't go back. We found a pub about a mile away called the Blue Boar which had a fantastic atmosphere, professional engaging staff and great food (4 course £34.95). They also do rooms and we wished we had stayed there instead. The standards at the Billesley Manor hotel are very poor, I'd rate it 2star and its not really good enough or acceptable nowadays. The Latvian waiting staff in the restaurant were the only cheerful thing about the place.

Room Tip: Attic rooms in the Manor have no soundproofing so you can hear every footstep and noise of your neig...
  • Stayed: February 2012, travelled with friends
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2  Thank nutgrove
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 15 February 2012

Booked a package that included access to gym & spa, a mini facial and massage for my wife & I, dinner, room and breakfast for a great price. Also, as we had our wedding there we received a complementary upgraded and ended up staying in the room that we spent our wedding night, which was a lovely gesture.

After checking in and receiving the upgrade for the friendly reception staff, we had a bite to eat for lunch in the bar. The food was lovely and the staff friendly & attentive. Then it was off to the spa for a swim, sauna and steam room before our treatments. Do have to say that the spa was the only part that we would say didn't match our expectations. The girl at reception seemed under pressure and as a result was rushed in dealing with us, and we never did get the complementary arrival drink. Other than the pool, sauna and steam room, the place offers little else you can relate to a spa day. The treatments however, were excellent.

We had a drink in the bar after our treatments and the staff again was nice. Then it was dinner where we had a great table, excellent service, nice wine and exceptional food from a good menu and good wine list.

The breakfast was buffet style and offered a wide variety, including cereals, continental & cooked. Very tasty too.

Cannot fault much about the whole experience, but thinking the spa could do with improving, but don't let that pout you off as the treatments were as good as any others we had and the overall hotel experience was excellent.

  • Stayed: February 2012, travelled as a couple
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Thank simonbaldwin
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 15 February 2012

Booked a short break, attracted by the spa and location near Stratford-upon-Avon. The room (16) was a little tired but clean and well kitted out. Reasonable buffet breakfast. I echo the spa comments, it isn't really a spa and whilst the female staff were professional there was a male who acted as if guests weren't within earshot, swapping banter and generally swaggering about.

The big let-down is the way the restaurant staff are (dis)organised - we had dinner booked for one night, and the staff were run ragged trying to handle all the covers. They were all East European, well-meaning and polite, but clearly scrambling to stay on top of the dining room. I had to walk out and stand waiting with a menu in order physically stop someone in order to place our order. Starter of salmon trio, bland, sald not dressed, yet another (lamb confit) was excellent. Main of rib-eye steak, ordered medium rare but overcooked. Whole place felt like people playing at running a hotel. Shame really, as the building is beautiful and the topiary outside is impressive. I am not familiar with Barcelo hotels and on this basis would be wary of others.

In mitigation, the package price was very keen - I guess this is the trade-off! caveat emptor.

  • Stayed: February 2012, travelled with family
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2  Thank jbonholiday
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 9 February 2012

Stayed here for 3 nights on business. Stayed in room 69, Room was large, full of light and tastefully decorated.
Food in the bar was great especially the steak ciabatta, good breakfast and most of all excellent service!
Staff friendly and helpful at all times.
Great Location, fantastic building and area steeped in history (the church in the hotel grounds was where william shakespere got married, the church is now unused but the hotel have a key if you want to go and have a look.)
Will definately return!

  • Stayed: February 2012, travelled on business
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1  Thank blackpoolmick
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 8 February 2012

Beautiful grounds, quiet location but the 'barn rooms' mean a walk across in the cold and snow/rain to dinner.The spa is not actually a spa just a swimming pool,steam room & sauna(no jacuzzi) and for my stay no beauty therapist, which was unfortunate when I had specifically booked for a spa break.
Evening meal was included as was breakfast which was delicious and the service from the waiting staff was excellent.
But no alarm call the next morning and no call to notify me that the therpaists had not turned up and therefore no treatments that I had prebooked left me feeling disappointed.This could have been turned around with a good customer service at check-out but initially being overcharged for 3 items and then being offered a menial refund for my beauty therapy mean't a lengthy discussion after an hour long wait checking out!
This hotel has much potential but would not recommend a stay here (maybe dinner).As a guest of Barcelo hotels around the world this is definitely not to their standard.

Room Tip: Request a room in main hotel building
  • Stayed: February 2012, travelled on business
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3  Thank valu4moneyqueen
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 7 February 2012

We were extremely disappointed with our stay at Billesley Manor. We were supposed to be staying for one night in a premium room, the website's description of which is as follows -

"Our premium double rooms are located in the Manor House and the converted Cedar barns. Many with views of the gardens. Modern & individual in design, some retain the orginal tudor barn beams. Spacious and contemporary in style using maple wood and glass accessories bathed in pastel tones, these rooms have been furnished with Italian fabrics with a twist of originality. These premium rooms benefit from large work area with desk, sitting area with easy chairs and coffee table and include bathrobes, slippers & executive refreshment tray. You will also find quality features including wireless internet access, trouser press & hair dryer." Sounds nice, doesn't it! The photos on the website look good, too.

We were initially put in room 20, which had no view, was appalingly furnished and was a mish-mash of patterns and colours which was frankly unpleasant. We called reception to point out that this didn't seem to be a premium room (not spacious or contemporary, no maple of glass accessories, not bathed in pastel tones, and certainly not furnished with Italian fabrics. No large work area, no easy charirs etc etc....) and we were moved to room 6. Room 6 was a slight improvement, but was still by no means up to the standard expected of a "Premium" room in a 4 star "Premium" hotel, and had none of the above features other than a view. The room was incerdibly cold and the lady from reception had to bring us a fan heater and an extra duvet. The toiletries hadn't been replenished and were half empty, and the bath taps were about ready to fall off. The room was terribly dated.

The only positive things I have to say about this place are that the staff were reasonably pleasant and the breakfast was very good.

Overall, the impression created by Barcelo's website is terribly misleading, and we did not have the stay we expected at all. Had we not paid for the room in advance, we would have refused to pay as we simply weren't given what we paid for. I have complained to Barcelo and am still waiting for a response. In the meantime, I'm tempted to take this up with Trading Standards....

  • Stayed: January 2012, travelled as a couple
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3  Thank Nev G
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Billesley Manor Hotel

Address: Billesley | Near Alcester, Stratford-upon-Avon B49 6NF, England
Region: United Kingdom > England > Warwickshire > Stratford-upon-Avon
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Centre with Internet Access Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#4 Spa Hotel in Stratford-upon-Avon
#10 Luxury Hotel in Stratford-upon-Avon
Price Range: £87 - £218 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4 star — Billesley Manor Hotel 4*
Number of rooms: 72
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The 16th Century, four-star Billesley Manor Hotel has 72 bedrooms and sits in 11 acres of beautiful countryside just outside the medieval town of Stratford-Upon-Avon. Visit the Royal Shakespeare Theatre, discover the myths and magic of Warwick Castle, then enjoy a quiet moment in the hotel’s library, where legend claims that Shakespeare penned As You Like It.A beautiful country retreat with a Health & Leisure Club that features an indoor pool and outdoor tennis court. The hotel also has a listed 100-year-old topiary garden and fountain. The 2 AA Rosette Stuart Restaurant serves modern British food made from seasonal, local produce. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Barcelo Stratford Upon Avon
Stratford Upon Avon Barcelo

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