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“Disappointing”

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Hallmark Hotel Birmingham Strathallan
Ranked #51 of 118 Hotels in Birmingham
Reviewed 19 August 2014

Oh dear…
It’s hard to know where to start: I booked a room at this hotel after looking at the reviews on Trip Advisor, and also the fact that it offers ample parking for hotel guests, which is not the case for many other hotels in this area.
I booked the most expensive grade of ‘superior king bedded’ room, which having read the reviews suggested I might get a room positioned away from the main road. Not so. My room overlooked the entrance from the Hagley Road, and so traffic was pretty heavy, and was also the first room along the corridor from the lift and stairs so I had the noise of everyone else coming and going past my door. The room was not air-conditioned, and was very warm when I arrived. The windows are a combination of single glazed sliding windows and inner sliding secondary double glazing. It is only possible to open each window by a few inches, and so lowering the temperature in the room is quite difficult. I was there on a fairly cool August day – in the height of summer it must be horrendous.
The room itself was a good size, with a delineated sitting area and bedroom space separated by a desk/dressing table in the middle of the room. The thing I noticed most memorably were stains - on the carpet and upholstery. The room generally looked as though it had been well used. The bathroom basin was cracked.
The bathroom consisted of a rather small & low pedestal basin, loo, and bath with shower over. The ceiling height in the bathroom was very low, so when I was standing in the shower the top of my head was at most an inch from the ceiling – I’m 6 feet tall, so loftier folk than me would have to bend over! The shower worked but was nothing to get excited about – rather weak, and because of the low ceiling, impossible for me to raise the shower head high enough to stand under the shower.
I ate dinner in the hotel, which was pretty reasonable. The staff in both the bar and restaurant were polite and friendly.
The absolute low point was the cooked breakfast. Both the sausage and bacon were extremely overcooked, and, I suspect, left over from the day before. I couldn’t even cut the bacon. I had arrived at breakfast shortly after service began at 6.45, so would have expected things to have been fresher than this.
For me the other telling point occurred when I checked out. Not a word to ask whether I had enjoyed my stay, or if everything was OK. I wondered whether they didn’t want to ask. I will not be returning.

Room Tip: Ask for a room away from the front of the hotel to avoid traffic noise
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  • Stayed: August 2014, travelled on business
    • Location
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
5  Thank gibbinspm
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
259Kevin, General Manager at Hallmark Hotel Birmingham Strathallan, responded to this reviewResponded 3 September 2014

Dear Guest

Thank you for taking the time to leave your feedback and I was very sorry to read your stay was disappointing.
If the weather is warm then we do have fans available for those who may wish them.
The windows work very well to keep noise out and only slide open by 9 inches due to health and safety.
The shower should have a good water pressure as they are shower pump assisted and will I will have all pumps checked by maintenance.
The breakfast is freshly cooked every day and no items are ever used the following day and there is no excuse for the bacon or sausages being over cooked and should not have been sent out.
We clearly need to do some retraining in the hotel as the reception team should have asked about your stay prior to departing.
I am sorry for the issues you had and please accept my sincere apologies.
I do hope you will give us the another opportunity in the future and consider staying with us again when next visiting Birmingham.

Kind regards
Kevin Williams
General Manager

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712 - 718 of 1,155 reviews

Reviewed 18 August 2014

We've been coming to visit our son in Birmingham for 7 years, since he first moved there as a student. We've stayed in lots of different hotels over this time, including a few others on the Hagley Road (there's one in particular that really should have been condemned long ago!), and I always thought the Strathallan looked like a 70s multi-storey car park when we drove past! However, we needed a fairly cheap hotel for last Saturday night, and our usual choices weren't coming up with very good prices. So we thought we'd give this a try. And we were so glad we did!

Don't be put off by the dated exterior; inside it is spotlessly clean, timelessly decorated and tastefully furnished. Service was impeccable, and we will definitely be back!

It wasn't clear from the booking website we used whether parking was free or not, and I must admit that even as we drove into the car park, we weren't sure of the cost. I left hubby in the car while I slipped down to Reception: no problem - parking is free for guests who can come in and out of the car park as many times as they wish as long as they register the car registration number at check-in. Sorted! Car parked, we were given a room on the 7th floor. I had requested a high, outside room; the corridors on each floor go around in a circle, so on one side of you the rooms face inwards, and on the other they face outwards. I hadn't expected our request for an outside room to be granted, as I assumed they'd cost more, but we did in fact get one, and it was very impressive! I'm not sure that the inside rooms would have been so spacious, but ours was probably the biggest hotel room we'd ever had in Birmingham, and by far the most luxurious!

Big windows with nets, curtains and drapes. A huge and very comfy bed with extra cushions. TV, iron and board, hairdryer. A tray with a clean kettle, plenty of tea, coffee, semi-skimmed milk cartons, and even hot chocolate and a few biscuits. Lots of storage space with plenty of hangers(there's even a thick towelling robe in the wardrobe), and plush towels and face cloths. Soap, shower gel and shampoo were also provided, as well as a scrupulously clean rubber non-slip bath mat.

I had noticed other reviewers mentioning that the windows didn't open much, which made the rooms stuffy in the hot weather; I can see how that may have been a problem, but when we were there the weather was warm without being hot, and the room was a perfect temperature and never stuffy. It was also very quiet - we weren't disturbed by noise from other guests in their rooms or by traffic noise - although with the windows open slightly, we could certainly hear the wind whistling through!

We went for a meal at the Beefeater across the road on Saturday evening; there are plenty of restaurants nearby - Ask, TGI Friday, Akbar (Indian), and a new Argentinian one (I can't remember the name but it looked nice). The Strathallan obviously had it's own restaurant and also offered room service, which looked like fairly standard prices.

We then had to drive our son back to his house, and realised as we got to the car park exit that there was a barrier down which prevented us fromn leaving! However, as we sat there wondering what to do, the barrier rose automatically, so no problems. It rose again to let us back in later - a nice bit of extra security for the car. We'd also noticed that on leaving the lift on the 7th floor, we had to insert our room key before we could get into the corridor to our rooms. Again, this made us feel very secure; there's no chance of anyone wandering in off the street (which I'm sure happens at certain other hotels nearby!).

We'd arranged to meet our son at Selly Sausage in Sellyoak for breakfast the next day, but the smell of bacon wafting out from the hotel breakfast room smelt pretty good! I think they said breakfast would have been around £8 each if we'd booked it on check-in, but more if we decided to have it on the day.

The only thing that let the hotel down very slightly was the lack of water pressure from the shower. I really wanted the shower to be a really good one, but it was just ok. Not much pressure, which was a shame. However, the bath towels were large and thick, and the lack of pressure just meant that I felt clean but not truly pampered!

When we checked out the next morning, I felt I had to check with the Reception staff that there was only meant to be one bath robe in the room - I had visions of getting a letter weeks later claiming that we'd taken one and asking us to pay for it! We said that we hadn't needed another one, but the Receptionist was very apologetic, and he explained that they only supply one per room unless someone requests another, in which case of course they would oblige. I did notice something in the room advising guests they could call Reception if they needed anything else, such as extra towels; I don't remember another bathrobe being mentioned, but the staff were so helpful that you felt they would be happy to oblige, whatever you needed. I think it may be worth the hotel making it clear from the outset that only one robe is supplied initially, as I worried that they would think we'd stolen one!!

We were really, really impressed with this hotel, and I am sure we will be back many more times in the future!

Room Tip: Outside rooms are probably bigger, but possibly inner rooms would be quieter if you wanted your wind...
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  • Stayed: August 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Service
Thank TravelPolly
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
259Kevin, General Manager at Hallmark Hotel Birmingham Strathallan, responded to this reviewResponded 3 September 2014

Dear Guest

Thank you for taking the time to leave your feedback and I was very pleased to read you had a lovely time and enjoyed your stay.

We do hope you stay with us again when next visiting Birmingham.

Kind regards
Kevin Williams
General Manager

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 17 August 2014

Staff were very helpful and polite, my room was found easily although someone else had booked it for me in my maiden name, this was not a problem and everything was resolved quickly. The rooms were fresh and clean and I had a nice view of a play area. I enjoyed my breakfast very much and didnt feel rushed at all

  • Stayed: August 2014, travelled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Service
3  Thank LeicesterJudi
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
259Kevin, General Manager at Hallmark Hotel Birmingham Strathallan, responded to this reviewResponded 3 September 2014

Dear Guest

Thank you for taking the time to leave your feedback and I was very pleased to read you had a lovely time and enjoyed your stay.

We do hope you have the opportunity to stay with us again when next visiting Birmingham.

Kind regards
Kevin Williams
General Manager

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 17 August 2014 via mobile

We were given an executive suite for our family and were very pleased with the size and amenities of the room. Our little ones had a great time playing around the room. Tea code and biscuits were nicely presented. The availability of ironing board inside cupboard was also a great feature. Would stay again should they offer the same great price!

Stayed: August 2014
2  Thank Hmsglobal
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 13 August 2014

I stayed at this hotel for two nights recently with my wife whilst working in Birmingham. We have stayed at Menzies hotels before and been pleased with the dinner bed and breakfast deals. This time it was horrible, I checked in with an unhelpful Indian receptionist who was just trying to sell a room upgrade at £10 per night which we declined. He did not want to listen to us, just sell an upgrade. The inside room we were allocated was as small as I can ever remember staying in. There was no view out of our room other than into an internal dark hole. The bathroom was incredibly small. The rear entrance to the hotel had not been brushed for days as there were cigarette packets there from our arrival until departure. The hotel was badly managed and in our opininion did not do a good job. We eat on the first night and the food was OK but the waiting staff unhelpful, only around 10 people appeared to dine all evening, should we be surprised!
Breakfast on Sunday was a buffet which was OK but limited in offering and not what Menzies used to be. You have to collect your own tea and coffee with about four staff members watching you.
Sunday nights meal was OK and presented with a smile byJulia, the best part of the weekend!
Monday mornings breakfast was horrible, no buffet as Sunday, a full English covered in Beans, I cannot think that it was the Chef, must have been someone else to present food in this manner. They need to understand that beans is an option and not to be used like gravy!!.
We then checked out and the tall male receptionist could not care at all.
We will never be back. Menzies what are you up to? If you are out of Administration you will soon be back again again if you look after people like this.
Recmmend that you avoid, there are plenty of other nice hotels in Birmingham

Room Tip: Avoid the hotel completely.
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  • Stayed: August 2014, travelled on business
    • Value
    • Sleep Quality
    • Service
2  Thank Martyn D
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Strath01, General Manager at Hallmark Hotel Birmingham Strathallan, responded to this reviewResponded 15 August 2014

Dear Guest

Thank you for taking the time to leave your feedback and was sorry to hear you did not enjoy your stay.
The receptionist seeing you had booked a standard double room asked you if you would like to upgrade to one of our executive doubles at a special offer price and you chose not to take this offer up, but feel from your comments left that this would have been a better option for you and would of helped you enjoy your stay.
The entrances are brushed every evening by the hotel night staff but unfortunately the bins provided are not always used.
The breakfast items provided at Menzies hotels is the same now as it was when you last stayed at a Menzies hotel and with very good feedback from our guests, I very much appreciated your comment about the beans as this was dealt with immediately and changed before you left the hotel.
We very much appreciate constructive feedback and will always do our best to act on all feedback given

Kind regards
Kevin Williams
General Manager

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 12 August 2014

We stayed here for one night, don't be put off by the sixties looking building as it is very modern inside. The hotel was excellent, our room was modern and very clean, staff were very helpful and friendly. I would definitely stay again and recommend the hotel.

  • Stayed: August 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Service
1  Thank Christmaslady
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Strath01, General Manager at Hallmark Hotel Birmingham Strathallan, responded to this reviewResponded 15 August 2014

Dear Guest

Thank you for your very positive comments and we are pleased you enjoyed your stay with us, I will ensure I pass your feedback on to all the staff and we look forward to welcoming you back on your next visit to Birmingham.

Kind regards
Kevin Williams
General Manager

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 11 August 2014

Good - Buffet Breakfast
Location - If you have a car

Bad - Service
WiFi
The Bed
The humudity in room

I had booked a room with A/C in a normal double bedroom but was tld to pay £10 extra a night if i wanted a "better room" which was the exceutove room with a bigger bed an a view. I said ok.

What I found out was that the room had no A/C and was very hot and humid in there. I had my pregnant wife with me who was very uncomfartable with this. I went downstairs later in the evening to the guy that gave me this new room to tell him that there was no A/C. He said that was only in the rooms with no view so basically the one I had already booked. He sent some fans upstairs to the room that didnt do too much.

In the early morning I also found out that the bed was not a double bed but 2 single beds put together.

In the morning after breakfast I told all of this to the new receptionist and she said that we maybe be able to change rooms but nothing came of it. I also explained to her that the WiFi was very poor as well.

I have never stayed in such a place in my entire life. The only thing that saved any of this was the buffet breakfast and its location some what.

  • Stayed: August 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Location
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Thank IAhmad81
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Strath01, General Manager at Hallmark Hotel Birmingham Strathallan, responded to this reviewResponded 15 August 2014

Dear Guest

Thank you for your feedback and was very sorry that you did not enjoy your stay, I believe you were offered an upgrade at £10 per night to an executive room which is a larger room on the outside of the building as the receptionist thought you may prefer this room he was not aware that you chose the room you had booked was because you required air conditioning and this was not mentioned to him at the time.
The beds a zip and link bed which can be a super king or two singles, at the time you had a super king bed and not just two beds pushed together and left.
The receptionist did check with BT Openzone as they are the provider of the WiFi to the hotel and after checking the system found all to be working correctly.

Once again thank you for your feedback and I am sorry you did not enjoy your stay with us.

Kind regards
Kevin Williams
General Manager

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Hallmark Hotel Birmingham Strathallan

Address: 225 Hagley Road, Birmingham B16 9RY, England (Formerly Menzies Strathallan)
Region: United Kingdom > England > West Midlands > Birmingham > Edgbaston
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Suites Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#21 Luxury Hotel in Birmingham
#43 Romantic Hotel in Birmingham
Price Range: £41 - £104 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4 star — Hallmark Hotel Birmingham Strathallan 4*
Number of rooms: 135
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Hallmark Hotel Birmingham Strathallan is centrally located and easy to get to. The hotel is close to Birmingham city centre and offers plenty of free parking on site. Free WiFi is available throughout the hotel. The Hallmark Hotel Birmingham Strathallan has 135 bedrooms including 53 brand new City Double bedrooms. The hotel also has lots of great facilities including a brasserie, bar and lounge, a small gym for hotel guests, 7 air-conditioned meeting rooms for up to 170 delegate and function rooms for weddings up to 170 guests. BT Sport is now available in the bar/lounge area. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Menzies Strathallan, Birmingham Hotel Birmingham
Menzies Strathallan Hotel Birmingham

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