Swindon doesn't really do anything exceptionally. Possibly with the exception of being the most average place you've ever been to in your life. In fact it actually excels at being mediocre - including the hotels.
The De Vere Swindon is nice enough - the decor is quite contemporary for a chain hotel, except for the restaurant which looks like it came from a book called "1000 Italian Cliches". Seriously, the old Cornetto adverts offered a less stereotypical image of Italy.
A friend and I were staying in a twin room and actually it was quite nice. It was spacious, well kept, and very clean. The bathroom was, like most hotel bathrooms, compact. Again though, it was quite nice. I found the huge mirror directly behind the toilet a little odd but otherwise there was a decent bath, plenty of towel hanging space and for me the shower offered power as well as properly hot water.
For some reason Swindon hotels are almost never air conditioned. By today's standards the De Vere offers a very quaint alternative - windows that actually open! However, this being Swindon the view is neither attractive nor quiet. Our window overlooked a main road, and little else.
The hotel's location is an odd one - not in the town centre, but in a "leisure park" that has seen better days. The architecture screams late 80s/early 90s "trying to look more rural than it actually is".
The hotel bar is modeled on a pub and is called The Victory - it sells a fairly average selection of beers, wines, and spirits as well as your usual pub grub. Prices seemed reasonable to me, but then again I've lived in London for over a decade so most places seem cheap by comparison.
The restaurant, where you'll likely have breakfast, is as I say, very unsubtle in its Italian theme. The breakfast itself is pretty standard - a buffet with an offer of hot and cold foods. Again, all quite nice, if not all that exciting.
The hotel features a gym/leisure club which I didn't use, and has its own branch of Starbucks. The Starbucks could be any in the world because of course it looked the same as all the others and served the same mediocre coffee.
All in all the Swindon De Vere is nice enough. You could certainly choose to stay in a worse place. The staff are generally very pleasant, and the facilities are fine. Swindon not being a holiday destination as such doesn't really have any particularly exceptional hotels.
I'd probably stay here again if I had reason to be in Swindon for more than a day.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Village Hotel Swindon is situated on Shaw Ridge Leisure Park and 3 miles from Swindon Town Centre. The Leisure Park has a bowling alley, multi screen cinema, restaurant, Pizza Hut and a public house. Within walking distance is an ice skating rink, a small shopping area with supermarket, post office, pharmacy, petrol station. Great Western Designer Outlet Village is within a 10 minute walk. Village Hotel Swindon has 147 bright and modern bedrooms, a choice of stylish dining or a traditional pub, Starbucks Coffee Shop, a relaxing Spa, state-of-the-art Health and Fitness Club, Swimming Pool, Meeting and Conference Centre, Live Party Nights, Wedding Licence, free wi-fi throughout the hotel and free parking. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- De Vere Village Swindon Hotel Swindon
- Swindon De Vere Shaw Ridge
- Village Hotel Swindon Wiltshire