I've stayed at this charming and ancient hotel at least a dozen times since the late 80s and have also recommended it to several friends over the years. Everyone I've sent here has thanked me for the recommendation but it's definitely a hotel with 'character'.
The lack of easy parking can be annoying but is also to be expected in this medieval city. Two of my stays at this hotel were with my handicapped mother and the hotel staff could not have been more gracious in allowing me to park in their 'special' area and gave us a room which only required a minimal amount of steps. (I don't believe any of the rooms at the Red Lion are really 'handicapped accessible' but, heh, it's an ancient building so we coped.)
I've always had rooms in the 'historic' section and often overlooked the lovely courtyard. Each room was different and the hotel can be a bit of a maze to navigate but that's part of the charm. I especially enjoy noticing how modern plumbing and a tiny elevator have been fitted into the centuries-old building. Sometimes trying to shoehorn modern facilities into an old building makes for some creative use of space but it works. Years ago I learned to travel with a pair of earplugs so being kept awake by noise has never been a problem. (I actually use them more on airplanes than in hotel rooms but it's comforting to know that, if things get noisy, you have a sound muffler available.)
I never understood the phrase until I first stayed at the Red Lion but the ancient beams throughout the historic section and the clock in the entrance area are 'black with age'. It's not dirt or paint but, instead, it's the reaction of the wood to centuries of exposure to air and woodsmoke. I think these are some of the reasons to choose the Red Lion but, if you must have the most modern facilities, the Red Lion is not the hotel for you. Those who appreciate an historic hotel with lots of atmosphere and a friendly staff will find the Red Lion a delightful base to explore the many fascinating sites in and around Salisbury. I'm sure I'll be returning here the next time I'm in the area.
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- Also Known As:
- Red Lion Salisbury
- Best Western Salisbury
- Salisbury Red Lion
- Salisbury Best Western