We were really looking forward to returning to St Andrews and this was the first time we had stayed at the Fairmont, having met at an event at the Fairmont many years earlier, whilst students at the University.
Hotel and grounds: The hotel is a 10 minute drive to St Andrews, but definitely not walkable. There is a hotel Shuttle for visitors, and although we did not use this, I would imagine that it would be slightly awkward for guests to coordinate their timetable with the Shuttle times (I'm also not sure if there is a timetable for guests for the times, nor whether the Shuttle operates in the evening). The one huge downside to the extensive grounds is that the hotel car park is quite a distance from the reception doors - not everyone will want to use the valet parking option! It must be said that the front-of-house staff were faultless and very welcoming, and a real credit to the hotel.
The room: On arrival to our room, however, the temperature was set too cold, due to over-zealous air conditioning. There was a 'Nespresso' machine, however four pods with the machine, which were unlabelled, and which Reception were unable to tell if caffeinated or decaffeinated. The lack of complimentary wi-fi anywhere in the hotel was also disappointing in this day and age.
Facilities: We were disappointed that although there were robes in the bathroom, there were no slippers, to go down to the spa in. We had to ask for these to be brought up. In addition, there were very very tiny bottles of shower gel, shampoo, conditioner and body lotion, which were only suitable for a single person, not two people. The water pressure in the shower was truly appalling, despite the presence of an 'override' button - something that I think the hotel really needs to work on.
Spa: It was slightly disconcerting that there wasn't anyone to welcome us at the reception desk at the spa, and that anyone could have walked in to use the facilities/ products in the area. The jacuzzi is on a 10 minutes on/ 10 minutes off timer, which is not ideal for anyone wishing to stay in longer than 10 minutes, or wanting to control the bubbles themselves. In addition, the steam room was out of order when we were visiting - something that I always enjoy using, so this was disappointing. The pool was a bit chaotic - there were a few people doing lengths, but no lanes marked off for this. There are dedicated child-friendly 'Splash times', which are good for families, as well as those who want to avoid children.
Summary: This is an impressive hotel but one that I don't think quite reflects its five star rating. There is the opportunity to provide feedback on your stay, which I have filled in, however the majority of the survey focuses on Fairmont as a brand and there is little opportunity to provide 'free text' answers. I have requested a reply from the hotel regarding the little niggles we had during our stay, and I hope to hear back from them.
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- Also Known As:
- Fairmont St Andrews Hotel St. Andrews
- St Andrews Fairmont
- Fairmont St Andrews Scotland