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“few improvements needed but overall its not bad”
4 of 5 bubbles Review of Old Swan Hotel

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Old Swan Hotel
Ranked #15 of 30 Hotels in Harrogate
Warrington, United Kingdom
1 review
“few improvements needed but overall its not bad”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 17 May 2014

i recently stayed at the old swan hotel, harrogate and ultimately i enjoyed my short stay.
the room was small and was quite poor. housekeeping need to up their game a bit.
breakfast in the morning was good. a lady who i assume is the manager was stood at the door and took our room number which she crossed off a list and told us to take a seat. she didn't look to do a lot else even when the staff members were clearly busy. we went down to breakfast early as we had been warned it gets quite busy later on. the buffet had a lovely selection of fruit, cereals, yoghurt & juices and we were served by a young waitress very quickly. she was very polite and made us feel very welcome. she took our order for hot drinks, toast & breakfast and the breakfast arrived very quickly. the food was lovely with the exception of the bacon which did not appear to have even seen the grill. when we had finished our breakfast the same waitress who took our order cleared our plates away. we dined in the restaurant that evening and noticed that the same waitress from breakfast was on again that evening though she did not serve us. the food was lovely. we retired to the bar after our meal but wish we hadn't. the girl behind the bar was so miserable and it came across that she would rather be anywhere other than work at that time. the restaurant staff were lovely and friendly and the bar staff need to take tips from them. i would definitely return to this hotel and i love its historic connections to agatha christie.

  • Stayed April 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank eliciaivy
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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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
    4 of 5 bubbles
Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (373)
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English first
Bedford, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
59 reviews
20 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 47 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 16 May 2014

I used to stay at the Old Swan on business many years ago and we met up for a reunion on 13th May. I was told by the organiser that we could book the Old Swan for £120 per night B&B but when I rang the next day to book (over a week in advance) I was told it was now £140 per night. The only reason I booked was that all the other members of my party were already booked in.
The room was small but clean, but was it worth £140 - no way! The hotel is now living very much on its reputation and is in need of modernisation.
Will I stay again? Not unless I have to!

  • Stayed May 2014, travelled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank cainyatclapham
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 review, 19 May 2014
Dear reviewer, thank you for sharing your thoughts and I apologise that you did not enjoy your visit. We appreciate value for money is important and have recently redecorated however I am interested in your thoughts if you would like to contact me at the hotel to discuss this matter.
Regards
David Ritson
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 12 May 2014

We had an amazing wedding day at the Old Swan on 13th April. A big big thank you to all the team especially Jess, Paul and Helen. During the build up to the day they always made themselves available for us despite being very busy. We were able to build up a great rapport with them helping to reduce the stress levels involved. For the day itself we had a very large amount of information and instructions to follow, not making it an easy task for them. Although there was the odd bit that didn't quite go to plan, they were small enough for only us to know, the team more than made up for it in helping realise our special day!

Stayed April 2014, travelled with family
Helpful?
1 Thank Ben S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Mablethorpe, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
19 reviews
8 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 16 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 12 May 2014 via mobile

Stayed there in one of the large suites. Very clean and comfortable, nice location and staff were friendly. Highly recommend this place. The breakfast was lovely and the atmosphere reminds me of days long gone. You can understand why Agatha Christie his away here.

Stayed May 2014, travelled as a couple
Helpful?
Thank Chocolate999
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 review, 19 May 2014
Dear reviewer, thank you for your 5 star review! Compliments really do give the team a boost and whilst we appreciate all feedback comments such as yours are great to read!
Kind regards
David
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Lauterbrunnen, Switzerland
Level Contributor
4 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 12 May 2014

I recently stayed here and found it a great spot to see York and surrounding area. Rooms were spacious and cleaned every day. Staff were very helpful and there was plenty of parking spaces.
Food was of a good standard, and portions were a good size without being too much.
while there we found a great Pub - the Hare and Hounds in Burton Leonard - the best Steak and Ale Pie I can remember.

  • Stayed April 2014, travelled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank babsonthepiste
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Level Contributor
18 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 13 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 10 May 2014 via mobile

I once worked here many years ago and it has improved on its appearance.

We attended a wedding today. The civil was outside which was the couples choice. They got away with it as the weather just about behaved. Lovely to be outside for a wedding and they even released a pair of white doves!

The drinks reception of sparkling wine or champagne was ok, and the bar reasonable prices.

The canapés were ok, I liked the fish and chip one.

The wedding breakfast was ok. Food was not bad, didn't rate the pork belly much but the soup and dessert were good. More veg needed per table as family service.
Oh and check water jugs!! These should be topped up regularly and not on request at coffee.

The champagne was horrid. Lose that supplier! I don't think anyone finished their glass for toast.

Nice hotel and good day. Service needs polishing though and drinks package could be better. But nice day thank you.

Didn't sleep there, stayed in B&B near by.

Stayed May 2014, travelled as a couple
Helpful?
1 Thank Richard K
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Perth, Australia
Level Contributor
32 reviews
9 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 15 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 5 May 2014

My family has stayed at the Old Swan since the 1930's. I last stayed there as a boy in 1978. I was carrying four generations of wonderful memories and positive goodwill with me when I persuaded my partner that this was the only hotel to stay at in Harrogate. After all, its perfectly located in the town centre, just walking distance from everything that you would want to see in Harrogate.

I booked a larger "executive" room at quite an uplift in cost over the standard. This was important because we have a lot of luggage. Our room was 340 which, along with room 341, is dreaded by room service staff as the most difficult room to get to in the whole hotel (their description, not mine). It is no exaggeration to say that any attempt to locate 340 requires map, compass, native guide and a picnic basket for en route refreshment.

Having reached 340, what we found was an attic room with a tiny window and even tinier bathroom. The bathroom was so small that I could only walk sideways in it and could only just squeeze in between the door and sink. The room did have a king size bed, about the only aspect that conformed to the online description. When looking at the floor plan, it was clear that 340 is the smallest size of room on the floor. So an executive room is larger than what? A broom closet?

The major selling points for a hotel like the Old Swan are history, tradition, character, charm and old fashioned good service.

Some corporate guru has obviously been through the place and the result is not altogether successful. The hotel is now painted internally in a pale lemon meringue pie colour scheme. It's everywhere and all pervasive - like visual Valium. Not one ounce of visual character left.

Multi-tasking has been adopted with a vengeance, both for the staff and the hotel facilities. At dinner, there were as many staff as diners (a weird experience - 8 diners in a huge dining room), but service was hard to get as they were all working on setting up for breakfast. How to make your guests feel really appreciated! We soon got used to having the same person make coffee for us at 11 am and deliver an extra towel to 340 at 1 pm (with the habitual apology for how long it took to navigate to our room).

However, multi-tasking went too far when functions were held in the main areas of the hotel while they were kept open for guests as well. On one occasion we went to the Swan Bar Lounge and it was clear that some function was about to happen. We were told not to be concerned, the wedding function would just walk through the bar, get a drink and then move on to the ballroom. We ordered lunch and as indicated a large wedding party moved through the bar and off to the ballroom. Our lunch arrived and at the same time all 200 wedding guests returned to the bar, surrounding us on all sides. Trying to eat a meal with all these people watching you and obviously wondering who you are and why you are eating and they are not, is not pleasant, so much so that my partner burst into tears and we had to leave.

Generally, the staff do very well. Most are extremely friendly and efficient.

Overall, while we loved our stay in Harrogate, it was despite rather than because of the Old Swan. Would I stay there again? No. Will anyone from my family stay there in the future? Not if I have any say in the matter. It was crushingly disappointing.

Room Tip: Guess what - avoid 340 or 341
See more room tips
  • Stayed April 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank George J
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Old Swan Hotel

Property: 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 (Based on Average Rates): ££
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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