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“...and the prize for the most compact hotel room goes to....”
Review of Old Swan Hotel

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Old Swan Hotel
Ranked #17 of 28 Hotels in Harrogate
Reviewed 24 November 2013

We have just returned from a weekend at The Old Swan. Having stayed here a number of years ago we were looking forward to returning, remembering the spacious room and large bathroom. I knew the hotel had been refurbished and the public areas are quite impressive and very comfortable. Our room, on the other hand, was a disappointment. It was a double room but was very small with a tiny shower room. It reminded me of a good quality guest house. The bed was a double bed, with a king size bed head to make it look bigger. It was also only about four feet away from the door and every sound could be heard from the corridor. The small wardrobe (it had to be) held the tea tray, kettle, ironing board, iron and hair dryer, so good job we were only there for the weekend and didn't have a lot of luggage. The shower room contained the smallest shower tray possible and the wash basin was tiny - you couldn't even fill the kettle because it wouldn't fit under the mixer tap. The telly had a 32 inch screen and was out of proportion with the rest of the room. And during the night you could hear sounds from neighbours ( and they were only talking normally to each other)

On the plus side, the room was clean and the food in the restaurant was good, with attentive staff. There was a wedding party at the hotel and all the guests had met in the only bar in the early evening, although they obviously had another room available to them for the celebrations. We had booked a table in the restaurant for 9pm but went to the bar for a drink beforehand. Unfortunately because of the wedding party there was no room in the bar and getting served was an impossibility, so we just had to hang around. We went to the restaurant a bit earlier, and although they didn't chase us, they obviously would have preferred us to wait until 9pm.

We thought the small rooms were part of the refurb until we started talking to other guests who had larger rooms. When we checked out we mentioned that we were disappointed with the size of the room for what we had paid - £130 for the Saturday night - and that was just for the room. we were advised to phone in advance if we stay again and they would attempt to give us a bigger room. We were also advised that because there was a wedding at the hotel all of the wedding guests had been accommodated in one part of the hotel (presumably they got the best rooms too)

We would return but only on the basis we weren't put in the box room and we would check whether or not there was a wedding because given our experience in the bar before dinner, if you weren't in the wedding party, you didn't really matter

Room Tip: If you are offered room 333 ask for another one, unless you are a single person and then it might be...
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  • Stayed: November 2013, travelled as a couple
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Thank Annie195453
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
David R, General Manager at Old Swan Hotel, responded to this reviewResponded 27 November 2013

Dear reviewer, thank you for your review and I apologise that your feedback is mixed.

I am sorry that your allocated bedroom was not satisfactory and that you felt the wedding was our priority. We are a popular wedding venue, particularly at weekends, however I can assure you that we try and please all of our guests.

At some stage in most weddings the party breaks from the days wedding breakfast and usually congregate in the bar before returning to their evening reception. I apologise that you got caught in this period at the bar. We have several lounge areas and I am sorry that seating and service was restricted for that short period.

Please feel free to contact me before your next visit to discuss the matter and I will oversee arrangements for your stay.

Apologies once more
Regards
David

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1,122 - 1,128 of 1,783 reviews

Reviewed 23 November 2013

Like many others of the guests, my sister and I stayed two nights while visiting the Knitting and Stitching Show.

The hotel is large (though not over-large). The beds very comfortable, good en-suite facilities and they had everything we needed.

The lounge was particularly comfortable - lots of sofas and high-backed leather chairs - a small but varied bar menu and wonderful teas (although we didn't have the full tea).

What does put this hotel on top is the service. Everywhere the staff were friendly, approachable, watchful (always a very good sign). The food was tasty, although I am now not used to such rich fare (not the fault of the hotel).

The Old Swan has a good atmosphere and with a mixture of Show-goers, and conference attendees, plus locals coming in and out, it works well.

Like many hotels, often the TV system has a few gremlins in the works. Granted I was not there to watch it, but I do like to listen to the radio. It was available on the digital TV but during the morning the reception had hiccups!!

My sister and I are hoping to return again next year.

Room Tip: I didn't book the rooms, but each had a double bed with memory mattress. We had adjoining rooms...
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  • Stayed: November 2013, travelled with friends
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Thank LadyHGG
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
David R, General Manager at Old Swan Hotel, responded to this reviewResponded 27 November 2013

Dear reviewer, thank you for choosing us as the base for your stay in Harrogate.

Your kind words and description of your visit are much appreciated and we look forward to seeing you next year. Please call us direct or visit the hotel website for the best deals.

Regards
David

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Reviewed 17 November 2013

On the positive side, this Hotel has obvious advantages - space, inside and out: more than ample car parking, and a very large well-appointed restaurant, with service and food to match. It was especially pleasing to see a number of older members of staff in the restaurant, who had perhaps been with the Hotel for many years, and their courteous approach shone through.

On the negative side, there are significant differences in room size and facilities, and the heating appears to be on "economy" setting.

Specifically, I booked two rooms both on a dinner (plus some drinks and canapes) bed and breakfast tariff. We were given adjoining rooms, one with a large bathroom and the other with a miniscule one. When I came to settle the bill, the cost of one dinner and sundry drinks had been added - nearly £50 extra. Sure, the offending items were removed but the explanation given - "it happened because the bills for the two rooms were combined" is patently nonsense. And when it came to a discussion on the relative room sizes, there was a good deal of resistance, coupled with the suggestion that I should have raised it "on checking in", a piece of advice future visitors might feel worth implementing before unpacking, however inconvenient.

Room Tip: Check the room (and ensuite) before unpacking
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  • Stayed: November 2013, travelled with family
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Thank Paul G
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
David R, General Manager at Old Swan Hotel, responded to this reviewResponded 27 November 2013

Dear reviewer, thank you for taking the time to post your comments, apologies that your stay was not entirely satisfactory.

Our heating is not on continually as we find this tends to overheat the bedrooms however it is set on a timer, similar to your home heating. The timings are regularly reviewed in line with seasonal weather changes and portable heaters are available.

The hotel was established in 1840 and additions/refurbishments made over the years mean that all of our bedrooms are different in terms of size and layout. The offer to change rooms is an option subject to availability as obviously we want all of our guests to be comfortable. I apologise that this was a problem.

Sorry for the error on your bill, mistakes do happen, and we look forward to welcoming you back in the future.

David

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Reviewed 10 November 2013

We booked the Old Swan for a one night weekend away. I chose it because it is central and looked fairly close to the family we were visiting, no problem with that decision. We were given a room on the 3rd floor which was OK, double bed, large bathroom, clean and tidy with all the facilties you look for. There had obviously been water ingress from the roof around the edges of the ceiling and some remedial decorating was required, but not a problem for us. The one thing that really puzzled me was two single mattresses on a large double bed (may have been queen or king size) that joined with a zip that had failed in places. We didn't eat here as we were meeting family but the breakfast was very good and although it was a cold and hot buffet the waiting staff were very attentive without being over the top and happy to fetch extra toast and drinks when asked. If you are thinking of more than one night in Harrogate and will spend more time in your chosen hotel you need to know that this one does not have leisure facilities or a pool.

Room Tip: We were allocated a Room on the 3rd floor which was perfect as there was a wedding in the hotel and...
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  • Stayed: November 2013, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank Cockneygal20
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
David R, General Manager at Old Swan Hotel, responded to this reviewResponded 11 November 2013

Dear reviewer, many thanks for taking the time to review your stay and I am pleased to read that you had an enjoyable break.

I apologise that your room had fault and would ask that you contact me at the hotel in order that we can remedy the problem in the third floor room.

Kind regards

David Ritson

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Reviewed 9 November 2013

The first thing I would say is 'why is the internet not free'? Its about £25 for 24 hrs of WIFI internet. You do get 30 mins free each day but for that you must first sign up to the internet provider and thus give them all your card details. So one minute over your 30 mins you will be charged. Why cant hotels give you free internet its not that much to ask.
We stayed for 2 nights as it was just somewhere to sleep whilst we visited Harrogate and the city of York. There is plenty of parking at the rear of the hotel. The room has all your basic needs. Freeview TV, tea making facilities, hairdryer, iron and board and trouser press. There is a power shower and plenty of towels. We did however find the bathroom to be really small and pokey. The room itself could also have been a little warmer.
We didnt have evening meal but did have breakfast for 2 mornings. The breakfast staff are all professional and very attentive. The cereals and fruit are easily available, you have as much as you want. You will need to order your cooked breakfast which comes with tea/coffee and toast.
Breakfasts were all fairly hot and served professionally, in fact the full English breakfasts cannot be faulted. There was a member of staff dragging tables passed us which I felt really should have been done when breakfast had finished at 9.30.
Plenty of reminders of Agatha Christie around the reception area which is a nice touch. All in all a quaint hotel ideally placed to walk to Harrogate or catch a bus or drive to Leeds or York.

  • Stayed: November 2013, travelled as a couple
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Thank flippy504213
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
David R, General Manager at Old Swan Hotel, responded to this reviewResponded 11 November 2013

Dear reviewer, thank you for your review and I am sorry that you felt your stay was 'average'.

We are currently in contract with a wi-fi provider however once the contract has run its course we are exploring a free service. I have reviewed the process to access to the free 30 minutes and can assure other reviewers that the only information needed is your email address to log on, no credit card details are necessary.

Thanks again

David

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Reviewed 6 November 2013

I stayed overnight for a conference, my room (which was a mini suite) was very large with a separate lounge. I am normally not a very good sleeper but the king sized bed was very comfortable and I ad a good nights sleep. The breakfast was very good and the conference facilities were excellent.

  • Stayed: October 2013, travelled on business
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1  Thank val1946
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
David R, General Manager at Old Swan Hotel, responded to this reviewResponded 11 November 2013

Dear reviewer, thank you for your positive comments and I am glad to read that you had a good nights sleep and breakfast experience.

Thanks again for sharing your thoughts

David

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Reviewed 6 November 2013

Stayed one night. Reception and staff friendly. It is an old hotel and time has taken its toll so a refurb is needed in some areas but to restore completely would I guess be very very expensive.

So you have an old hotel with no air conditioning, creaky floors and a poor noisy lift. Having said that there is a certain charm and the food was well cooked and presented, but I think I will try another, perhaps more modern, hotel on my next visit.

  • Stayed: November 2013, travelled with friends
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Thank Kenny131
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
David R, General Manager at Old Swan Hotel, responded to this reviewResponded 11 November 2013

Dear reviewer, Thank you for taking the time to post your review and I apologise that your stay was only 'ok'.

I note your comments regarding refurbishment and can confirm that we have just finished our painting of the external woodwork and pipework plus all of the corridor areas inside the hotel.

We are also planning several improvements in our bedrooms in the next few months including some new windows and soft furnishings.

As well as the above projects our small maintenance team continue to work hard to maintain the property on a daily basis.

We do not have air conditioning but can offer fans, we have some creaky floor boards, as a feature Victorian property you may expect some (We do however take the opportunity to remedy this whenever replacing flooring or floor coverings) and although the lift shaft (cage) is old fashioned, the mechanics are inspected and maintained on a regular basis (Most of the major mechanical parts have been renewed over the last few years).

Thanks again
David

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Additional Information about Old Swan Hotel

Address: Swan Road, Harrogate HG1 2SR, England
Region: United Kingdom > England > Yorkshire > North Yorkshire > Harrogate
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Suites Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#12 Romantic Hotel in Harrogate
Price Range: £76 - £131 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:3.5 star — Old Swan Hotel 3.5*
Number of rooms: 136
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Dating back to 1840, The Old Swan Hotel is one of Harrogate's oldest & most cherished hotels; its Victorian splendour and traditional elegance is complimented today by a modern & contemporary environment.The hotel boasts 136 stylish bedrooms and ten suites(Some featuring four-poster beds and roll-top baths),a restaurant and bar, nine conferences suites,free Wi-Fi access and car parking spaces.The hotel is in the centre of Harrogate. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Old Swan Harrogate
Hotel Old Swan
Old Swan Hotel Harrogate, Yorkshire

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