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Tawny Owl
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Reviews (81)
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All reviewsprivate functionfull english breakfastvery pleasant stayvisit swindontea coffeeroast dinnera great place to staychecking outhot waterother hotelsfollowing morningan overnight stayvegbath
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58 - 63 of 81 reviews
Reviewed 3 December 2013

The best advice I can give you is to go someplace else. This is a pub first and foremost, not a hotel.

My check-in experience was poor at 10pm on Sunday evening. I arrived after a 4 hour drive to find that the staff weren't expecting me and didn't appear to have any details about my booking. I waited for 10 minutes for staff to go find the owner, who eventually arrived, then disappeared to go check his computer. When he came back a few min later he told me he needed to go check that the room was ready (as you can imagine, alarm bells were starting to go off in my head). Eventually I was led to a room which appeared clean and comfortable and I had a good nights sleep.

I was working in town and booked into this 'hotel' for 3 nights, so left my personal belongings in the room, as I would have expected them to be safe. I was wrong! During the day whilst I was out apparently someone decided I had been put into "the wrong room" so they removed all of my clothes from the wardrobe, toiletries from the bathroom and personal items out of a desk drawer including a laptop computer and moved them into another room. Apparently they later decided that this wasn't a good idea and moved most of them back (all without ever attempting to contact me). They, however, left my socks, underwear, ties, bag and computer the other room and then proceeded to check another guest into that room. When I returned in the evening I discovered things were missing and thought I had been robbed. Went downstairs to report the incident and was informed that they had moved some of my things and the person behind the bar went to find one of the waitresses to ask her where my things were... As you can imagine I was gobsmacked, but became furious when we needed to enter another guests room, with the guest in the room to retrieve my belongings.

When you check into a hotel you obviously expect that people will need to enter the room to clean it, but you do not expect them to riffle through drawers and take away your items to put them in a room with another guest. The scary thing is if they had left something less significant than my laptop, bag or essential clothing items in the other room, I may never have realised what had happened and another guest or staff member could have left with my property with me none the wiser until I later discovered something lost.

I had prepaid for this room as well as a subsequent booking via Expedia. Thankfully when I contacted them about this they were extremely professional and helped me to secure a partial refund for this stay and full refund for later stay that had been booked, as well as move to alternative accommodation.

The owner was extremely apologetic and blamed his staff's poor judgement for the incident, agreed to compensate me and assured me that they would be reviewing the way they handle situations where they need to move guest property in the future, but the whole situation left me feeling very uneasy about this place and I would not recommend it to any other travellers.

Room Tip: Go to another hotel.
  • Stayed: December 2013, travelled on business
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1  Thank Justin L
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 10 November 2013

Stayed in Swindon while visiting some friends for one night as opposed to making an hours drive home. The good things were the welcome we got when we checked in at 10pm, very happy chatty lady, and the breakfast that my husband had. The bathrrom was clean. We were in room 5, The Courtyard. It was very hot, opened the window but the traffic was too loud but that was better than closing the window. The woodwork at the bottom of the bath panel was peeling off. There was a damp patch on the ceiling in the bedroom. The light bulb for the reading light above one side of the bed was blown.
We didn't eat a meal ther so can't comment on the restaurant, but the breakfast was a full english, 2 rashers, 1 sausage, black pudding, fried tomato, fried bread, baked beans, mushrooms, toast and a big pot of tea accompanyed by a newspaper. all served nice and hot.
Overall, it just looks tired and dogeared, needs freshening up and modernizing,

  • Stayed: November 2013, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank Karen C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 20 September 2013

I stayed here for 4 nights this week, the room was decorated ok, but the bathroom lived a lot to be desired. It didn't have a very nice smell and the shelf above the sink was hanging off. WIFI was an essential for my stay as I was trying to find somewhere to live in the area, but the signal was so poor it just didn't connect, I had to use my own data which was quite annoying as I could have done with using my laptop not my phone. The worst part was last night (thurs) was quiz night which would have been ok if it didn't last till midnight!! I could hear every word the bloke was saying on the microphone and could have taken part from my room!! Won't stay again especially on a Thursday!!

Stayed: September 2013, travelled solo
2  Thank Nicola S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 25 June 2013 via mobile

Took the gamble to go back to this pub for a family meal, but sadly it's not improved.
Gave this a "Terrible" for cleanliness mostly due to the dark hair in my daughters food!

We gave it a shot, but won't be returning until we see some reviews that show the Tawny has made improvements.

Love the Waterwheel! Arkells, pull your finger out...get it cleaned it's disgusting! Get it working and get the weeds growing out of the top of it removed. You're demonstrating how to run a pub into the ground...and you're doing it very well

  • Stayed: June 2013
    • Location
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2  Thank paul h
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 20 June 2013

Hotel was booked and confirmation email had been received, turned up at the hotel and was told that no room was available. The landlord was unhelpful, unsympathetic and overall very rude. Can safely say I was 100% happy not to have to stay in their hotel!!

  • Stayed: June 2013, travelled on business
    • Value
    • Cleanliness
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6  Thank Businesstraveller299
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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