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2 of 5 bubbles Review of Royal Hotel

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Royal Hotel
Ranked #8 of 13 Hotels in Oban
GreenLeadersGold level
Oakham, England, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
18 reviews
9 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
“Better (and cheaper) places to stay...”
Reviewed 20 June 2014

I first sent an email (text below) to Customer Services, at Strathmore Hotels, on 5 June 2014 and heard nothing. I sent a reminder on 19 June and still heard nothing. People considering The Royal Hotel may wish to read below.

Dear Sir,

On Tuesday 3 June, I stayed at the Royal Hotel, Oban at the end of a short cycling tour of the Highlands and I am writing to inform you of my extreme disappointment at the experience. I should like to inform you of the following points.

Firstly, the room (320) was probably the smallest hotel room I have ever stayed in. It measured approximately 10’ x 10’ and was very poorly ventilated. The curtain could not be fully closed because of the location of the TV and the blinds were broken. The window opened only a few inches and that was on to a very small, dark shaft above a yard/storage area. Fortunately, I do not suffer from claustrophobia! The room was dark and shabby; in truth, it needed a good clean as it smelled very damp and musty. Actually, this last point is true of much of the entire establishment.

The en-suite shower room looked as if it was the product of a botched DIY project with mildew in the shower cubicle and the waterproof membrane coming away from the wall. In fairness, the shower itself worked reasonably well. However, the WC did not flush efficiently.

The TV in the room did not work properly. After I alerted your receptionist to this, a young man arrived to show me how to make it work. This was a rather complex procedure but eventually I got the hang of it. However, of the 14 channels which the literature in the room informed me were available, only 11 proved to be so. The literature also advised that radio reception was available via the TV; this was not the case. Moreover, the screen was of a dimension that did not permit normal on-screen information to be visible, so it was not immediately apparent which channel received which programme. The TV set itself was so old (my guess is about 25 years) that it was surprising it worked at all.

The advertising stated that free wi-fi was available. This was only partly true insofar as it was available in a corner of the bar, a corner of the bar closely populated by others attempting to access their emails etc. against a background of a Scottish Musical Trio performing for those guests not attempting to use their Ipads etc.

All of the above might be excused if the establishment in question was a cheap Bed & Breakfast establishment. However, the Royal Hotel boasts three stars and for the above, I was charged the sum of £58.50: the second most expensive room rate of my entire trip. The most expensive was a newly refurbished hotel in Fort William which provided a clean, airy double bedroom with a window which opened fully, a new multi-channel flat screen TV/radio and w-fi throughout. All of that cost a further £1.50.

In contrast to the above, it is only fair to inform you that the staff in the hotel were all friendly and welcoming, and a very good breakfast was provided.

I should also tell you that I have never written a letter such as this before and I have stayed in Scottish hotels on, literally, hundreds of occasions. My night in The Royal was, without doubt the worst value I have ever experienced in Scotland - or beyond.

I should be most grateful for your comments at your earliest convenience.

Yours faithfully

David Smith

Room Tip: Look for another establishment; there are loads.
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  • Stayed June 2014, travelled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank David S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Steven R, General Manager at Royal Hotel, responded to this review, 30 June 2014
Dear Tripadvisor

Thank you for your post regarding your recent stay with us here at the Royal Hotel.

I have checked with our Head Office and they have not received your email regarding your stay. They have asked if you email it to info@strathmorehotels.com, I can assure you that you will get a swift response.

We would like to apologise for the length of time it has taken for a response but had we received the email, we would have gladly responded sooner.

I hope to welcome you back to the Royal Hotel in the future and thank you once again for your honest opinion of the hotel.

Kind Regards
Steven Reffin

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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905 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    3.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    3.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    3.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    3.5 of 5 bubbles
Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (235)
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English first
Frampton, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
67 reviews
21 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 28 helpful votes
Reviewed 16 June 2014

Only stayed for one night as i was catching a ferry early in the morning. The room at the rear of the Hotel was quiet and the bed comfortable. All the expected amenities were there. As I was catching a very early ferry at 7.15 am I could only sample the Continental breakfast, but I am certain that from staying at other hotels in this chain the normal breakfast would have been self serve and ample. I would certainly use this hotel again in Oban as it is so convenient for the Cal Mac ferries.

Room Tip: Probably quieter rooms at the back but the view of Oban roof tops is a bit naff!
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  • Stayed June 2014, travelled solo
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Geoff B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Spalding, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
24 reviews
15 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 23 helpful votes
Reviewed 13 June 2014 via mobile

We stayed in this hotel whilst touring on motorcycles. The staff are very friendly and you feel it's because they want to and not have to be. The food was good and the good selection of drinks were good . The decore is a little tired but don't be put off.
Little local entertainment in the evenings . They even let us park our bikes under cover in a disused garage.

Stayed June 2014, travelled with friends
Helpful?
Thank Kennethbooth1950
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Steven R, General Manager at Royal Hotel, responded to this review, 30 June 2014
Hi There

Thank you for taking the time to contribute to our Trip Advisor page. I appreciate your comments regarding the Staff and the Food. Overall we receive mainly compliments regarding the staff and the food, I take pride in the effort made by the staff on a consistent basis.

In regards to decor, Strathmore Hotels are undertaking a massive role out program of investment in this area. This program although in its infancy, is shaping up well and our new rooms are looking fantastic. I trust that when you return the next time, you will see the improvement in this area.

I look forward to welcoming you back in the future.

Best Regards
Steven Reffin

General Manager
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Ardrossan, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
149 reviews
32 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 65 helpful votes
Reviewed 13 June 2014

I was on a bus day trip and the hotel was booked for snack for dinner and hight tea.
The friendliness of the staff was the first thing that was apparent.The soup etc was very good..
The high tea at night was excellent as well and no shortage of tea/coffee with the meal.
It was good value and a good day was had in Oban

  • Stayed June 2014, travelled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank WilliamH962
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Steven R, General Manager at Royal Hotel, responded to this review, 30 June 2014
Hi There

Thank you for your kind words, I am glad that you enjoyed your quick visit to the Royal.

I hope that we will see you back the next time you are in Oban

Kind Regards

Steven Reffin
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Aberdeen, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
166 reviews
29 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 64 helpful votes
Reviewed 7 June 2014

The building is slightly on the tired side. The location is just off the sea front (literally 50 yards). The view from my window was an uninspiring 1980s block of flats. But the reason I was there was to rest. The bed was clean and comfortable, the bath was big enough and had plenty of hot water, the kettle and TV worked (although 2 teabags and 4 little pots of milk is not enough for me for one night) cooked breakfast was included - and the buffet was really good considering the price I paid (£40 advance booking nonrefundable). Staff were helpful and friendly too.

  • Stayed May 2014, travelled solo
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank euromnlostatsea
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Narooma, Australia
Level Contributor
45 reviews
21 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 81 helpful votes
Reviewed 7 June 2014 via mobile

We booked a classic double room for two nights so we could visit the islands. The room was on the 3rd floor overlooking the main square. Very small with nowhere for luggage. Very small en suite with shower in bath. Noisy town square, creaky floors & disturbed by voices in hall & other rooms. Hard bed & pillows. Having said that, it is in the centre of town & close to the ferry wharf. Some free parking behind the hotel.

Stayed June 2014, travelled as a couple
Helpful?
1 Thank John S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Bellshill, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
8 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
Reviewed 6 June 2014

from the welcome from very friendly and helpful reception staff until the end of our stay my friend and I thoroughly enjoyed our stay at the royal...great value for money and excellent food in the restaurant...will b back

  • Stayed June 2014, travelled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank elzo111052
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Royal Hotel

Property: Royal Hotel
Address: Argyll Square, Oban PA34 4BE, Scotland
Phone Number:
Region: United Kingdom > Scotland > Argyll and Bute > Oban
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant
Hotel Style:
Ranked #8 of 13 Hotels in Oban
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): £
Hotel Class:2 star — Royal Hotel 2*
Number of rooms: 91
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Royal Hotel is located in the heart of Oban town on the western coast of Scotland. Enjoy the very best of Scottish hospitality at this 3-star hotel that first opened its doors in 1895. Rooms at this hotel feature television, tea/coffee makers, large windows and high ceilings, private bathrooms, complimentary toiletries, hairdryers, and climate control. The traditional decor is complemented by the tartan furnishings. There is Free WiFi in public areas, in Superior Rooms, or in all rooms if you book direct with the hotel. Porter, luggage storage and tours/ticket assistance services are provided and there is a very small car park to the rear of the hotel. The hotel’s 170-seater restaurant serves a great selection of Scottish cuisine that you can savour for breakfast, lunch, high tea and dinner. Relax in the bar and/or lounge over drinks and Scottish malts in the company of friends beside the open fire. Close to Royal Hotel are a handful of attractions including the iconic McCaig’s Tower, Oban Distillery, Glencruitten Golf Course, the House at Dunollie, and the Glorious Gardens of Argyll. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Royal Hotel Oban, Scotland

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