We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

“Afternoon tea superb in the sunshine”
Review of Chiseldon House

Best prices for -
Check In dd/mm/yyyy Check Out dd/mm/yyyy
Prices are for 1 room, 2 adults
Show Prices
Compare best prices from top travel sites
and 3 more sites!
Chiseldon House
Ranked #18 of 25 Hotels in Swindon
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed 14 May 2014

We had been bought this as a Christmas present and chose a good day for it. We sat outside in the sunshine and enjoyed 3 varieties of sandwich (as requested, all with no mayo), 2 scones, jam and cream each followed by 3 small cakes each and of course, our choice of teas. Everything was homemade and we had a great relaxing time. Thanks

  • Stayed: May 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Service
2  Thank ruthpi
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
John P, Owner at Chiseldon House, responded to this reviewResponded 10 June 2014

Thank you very much for your review. I am delighted you enjoyed your present of Afternoon Tea with us in the sunshine. We hope to welcome you again.

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Write a ReviewReviews (223)
Traveller rating
Traveller type
Time of year
Language

137 - 143 of 223 reviews

Reviewed 13 May 2014

My sister and I wanted to take our mum out for a treat on Mothers Day, so I booked in advance for five of us to have a meal at the restaurant within Chiseldon House Hotel. They were holding a special Mothers Day three course meal, with tea or coffee, for £25.95 per person (at that price, it had to be good, right?). We looked at the menu online beforehand, and both thought it sounded great, with good good vegetarian options for myself. I called to book, and paid the required £10pp deposit to secure a table.

Upon arrival, we were sufficiently impressed by the exterior, and grounds. A beautiful old house, set in vast gardens, with lovely seating areas dotted around. When we went inside to the reception area, we were pointed in the direction of the restaurant (which was in good order, but seemed more like a leisure centre bar, than an apparently award winning place), where we were stood in the doorway, directly next to a family eating their lunch, for a few minutes before being acknowledged by any of the restaurant staff, who eventually showed us to our table. No menus were provided when we were sat, not even a drinks list, which would have been helpful as we were asked to decide upon drinks almost instantly. After the drinks were brought to us, about ten minutes later, we were given food menus, before one of the four or five waiting staff that we saw throughout the meal, dissapeared off for a while. I'm not sure what training they'd been given, but they seemed to have no people skills at all, were unable to look customers in the eye, or talk at an audible level, let alone follow any sort of order of service, to give everyone a potentially enjoyable and hassle free time.

When we finally got around to ordering our food, I opted for the spiced red lentil and tomato soup, with creme fraiche, as a starter. The other members of our party went for either the grilled sardines, potato salad, and lemon and black pepper dressing, or the chicken, chorizo and bacon roulade with marmalade jelly. When they arrived, the presentation was average at best, the portion sizes were small, even by starter standards, and whilst the food tasted ok (and only ok), it was far from what was expected of an award winning restaurant. The soup was watery and lacked any real flavour, apart from the huge dollop of creme fraiche sat on top. The fish was just half a sardine sat atop a greasy, oily, mound of crushed potato, and the roulade was miniscule, with what looked like breakfast marmalade, popped out of one of those little single serving tubs, on the side, and a couple of chicory leaves on top.

The main courses were average at best. I ordered the sautéed wild mushrooms and beetroot papperdalle, with spinach and a white wine and parsley cream sauce, at which point the waiter informed me that I was the first person to order the vegetarian main course. The others ordered the slow roasted shoulder of pork with roast potatoes, spiced apple puree and cider and mustard sauce, or the salt crusted sea bass, with lemon and thyme, saffron roasted potatoes, and a brown butter and caper sauce. The food took a while to turn up at the table, so when it did, we were all pretty hungry after the meagre starters. Once again, my meal was bland, watery, and completely lacking any seasoning. A few limp looking mushrooms swam around on my plate, surrounded by bright pink tentacles of papperdalle, which were coated in a questionable mixture of water, oil, cream, and white wine. The other dishes were exactly what the menu had specified, and nothing more. Meat, two roast potatoes, and apple sauce on the pork dish, and fish, slightly yellow roast potatoes, and butter on the sea bass dish. After a few minutes more, two dishes of vegetables were brought to the table for us to share amongst us. This would have been a nice addition, if they were even slightly fresh, but they were dry, and luke warm, and tasted like they'd been sat in a freezer, and then under a heat lamp for too long. I couldn't eat more than two mouthfuls of my main course, so I tracked down the manager to have a quiet word. I explained the situation, and that I didn't want to make a fuss, but my meal was awful, and inedible, and seeing as how none of the waiting staff had even bothered to come and ask if things were ok, I had no option but to come directly to her. She told me that they had served several of those dishes that day, and had no complaints so far (strange considering I was the first person to order that dish). I informed her that I'm also a restaurant manager, and that I was on the whole unimpressed with the general performance of the staff, to which she started asking questions as to where I worked, and what my restaurant is like. Not to be rude, but that's not really your concern, or the issue here. After I had sat back down, she came to the table and asked if I would like someting else instead, which would have been a nice option, had the rest of the party not finished their meals, and had I thought that I could expect something within a reasonabe timeframe. I declined the offer, and just asked for the desserts to be brought. Desserts were pretty straightforward, or so we thought. I was initially going to have the bitter chocolate and berry tart, but none of the waiting staff could agree upon whether the pannacotta, that was served with it, was vegetarian. Instead I went for an apple and sultana crumble, with custard. Two others decided upon the chocolate tart, and another had a cheese board. The crumble was, well, it was just a crumble. Overly sweet, with limp custard. Nothing to get excited about. The chocolate tart looked nice, although was set almost rock hard, and near impossible to get through. As for the cheese board, it was two slices of cheese, with crackers, and a whole shops worth of celery sticks and what apeared to be some more of the marmalade from the starters. Maybe they needed to use it up. At the end of desserts, the staff once again showed their skills by only clearing two of the five dishes, and taking a further 15 minutes to bring us some luke warm coffee, served out of a thermos jug. After all that, I'm not sure why I was expecting fresh coffee, but it would have been nice.

After silently presenting my mum with a small pack of biscuits as a gift, the staff seemed to vanish, and left us to find out for ourselves that we had to pay for the meal at the hotel reception. We had to ask for money to be taken off the bill, seeing as I'd been unable to eat my awful main course, at which point they deducted £10 from the total.

For a restaurant that charges £26 for a meal, and constantly talks about the fact that it has won several awards, it was, on the whole, a pretty shoddy experience. I apologise for the long winded nature of this review, but I felt I needed to relay the whole experience, in order to stop people finding themselves having a similar one.

  • Stayed: March 2014, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
6  Thank xMattCx
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
John P, Owner at Chiseldon House, responded to this reviewResponded 10 June 2014

Thank you for taking the time to write such a detailed review. We value feedback and are always looking to improve. I am sorry that on Mother’s Day we did not reach the standard you had hoped for and indeed that we aim for ourselves. I take on board your comments and am addressing them.

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 8 May 2014

Me and my partner booked a night at your hotel, upon arrival we were not given any information regarding dinner times and breakfast times, but within two minutes we did receive a phone call to our room asking if we want dinner and we said we shall let you know, so we decided to go for a drink in the bar were a young lady then asked us again if we wanted dinner and we were still unsure but she was pushing for an order so we placed our order seeing as she wanted it so bad (felt very rushed).

We ordered the pork and ribeye off your "al a carte" menu and when it arrived it looked lovely but unfortunately the standard of the food was terrible, regarding the ribeye it was not cooked to my requirement, onion rings where soggy, the steak had no taste at all and the chips tasted horrible ( probably Havant been blanched, just cooked from raw . My partners pork was also disappointing as the piece of pork was smaller than anything else on the plate, the black pudding scotch egg contained a tiny little egg that was overcooked, pork was overcooked and black pudding tasted as if i was bathed in oil and not cooked.

We spoke to the young man regarding these issues straight away and was told nothing about it that night but when we checked out he basically told us that we were lying and had to pay the full bill even though i hardly touched my steak, we stated we were happy to pay for the pork as most of it was eaten but not the steak as i went hungry that night but yet still had to pay £22 for a meal i wouldn't feed my dog, i do not appreciate being called a liar as both my partner and i work in the hospitality trade and he is a head chef, so I'm afraid we do know how the food and especially the service should of been.

A very disappointing visit and would not recommend your hotel to anyone unless they want to be called liar and to feel very unwelcome.

DISGRACEFUL

  • Stayed: May 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
6  Thank Robert P
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
John P, Owner at Chiseldon House, responded to this reviewResponded 10 June 2014

Thank you for your feedback and for bringing this to my attention. I apologise you had a disappointing experience. We are reviewing complaint procedure with staff to ensure if any issues arise in the future that they are dealt with in an appropriate manner.

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 10 April 2014

I booked afternoon tea as a surprise for my Mums birthday today. The grounds were well kept and spacious and the hotel looks more like a Manor House. We were seated in the restaurant and we started with a sorbet. Then they bought out the tea or coffee and afternoon tea. This consisted of several different finger sandwiches, two scones with jam and cream and 3 different cakes. All the food was delicious and good quality. The staff were very pleasant and attentive. We were unable to eat all the food and the staff kindly wrapped each item individually and put into a brown paper bag to take home.
When we booked I asked for special dietary requirements for my daughter as she is pregnant and asked for sandwiches the young children would eat. They catered for our needs and I have to say that overall, I was very impressed, as we're the rest of my party. We will be going back there again.

Room Tip: We didn't stay. Just used the restaurant.
See more room tips
  • Stayed: April 2014, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
2  Thank Karen H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
John P, Owner at Chiseldon House, responded to this reviewResponded 22 April 2014

Thank you for your positive review. I am delighted you and the rest of your party enjoyed your visit to our hotel. We try to accommodate any guest request and we look forward to welcoming you again in the future.

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 8 April 2014

I decided to book an afternoon tea for my mum as a Mother's Day treat, after searching numerous hotels and manor houses decided upon Chiseldon House as the grounds looked lovely and seemed then
Effect place for an afternoon tea.
I booked for the Friday firstly because we thought it may not be quite as hectic but also it was fully booked anyway on the Sunday.
When we arrived there was a group on a large table just finishing a lunch, apart from that the place was empty. We were shown to a table I had requested, in the window area, I thought it might have had views over gardens however it was a view over the car park.
The restaurant has clearly just had a revamp, all very clean but not really very much atmosphere, big band type music was played on a loop over and over again so did get a bit boring!
We were given a menu for the Mother's Day tea which looked lovely, a great selection of teas and coffee and a lovely choice of sandwiches and cakes on offer so we were quite looking forward to what was to arrive. The cake platter arrived which look delicious, at first we thought that it would not be enough for the three of us but it was very generous portions. The finger sandwiches were very nice and some had quite unusual fillings, still very nice. Lovely cakes and scones and jam and cream followed. We all had ample to eat, in fact they did up a doggy bag for us to take home 4 scones that we had not eaten.
All in all a nice afternoon which my mum loved, the only one thing that would have been a nice touch would have been some fresh flowers on the tables, seeing as it was Mothers Day weekend perhaps some daffodils? In fact regardless of Mother's Day just some flowers in the restaurant would have made all the difference, especially as the crockery, the table linen were all white, perhaps have the napkins in another colour? It was just a little sterile, even perhaps have some nice bone china cups and saucers for afternoon tea's?
As I say it was a lovely afternoon and we will be going back in the future.

  • Stayed: March 2014, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Service
2  Thank DebbieHampshire
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
John P, Owner at Chiseldon House, responded to this reviewResponded 20 April 2014

Thank you for your kind comments. We have an ongoing schedule of improvements and redecoration and look forward to welcoming you back to see the renewed front lounge which will also be available for Afternoon Tea. We are grateful for your recommendations for furthering enjoyment of Afternoon Tea.

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 15 March 2014

We have just enjoyed an excellent afternoon tea, very friendly and professional staff, and very good quality food. Would eat here again. We had a gift card voucher and this wasn't a problem when booking or when we received the bill.

  • Stayed: March 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Thank SNG17
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
John P, Owner at Chiseldon House, responded to this reviewResponded 20 April 2014

Thank you for your positive review. I am delighted you enjoyed your Afternoon Tea with us and we look forward to welcoming you again in the future.

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 15 March 2014

I did not stay at the hotel met a friend for lunch. We always meet in a hotel so that we can enjoy a good meal and then sit in the lounge for a chat and coffee afterwards. There was no lounge as such just a seating area at the end of the dinning area which was the first disappointment. The dinning area was clean but lacked any atmosphere or style. The service was poor and no attention to detail, we were given two different menus at one stage and the waiter was not sure which menu was the correct one so went backwards and forward to the kitchen on at least two occasions to check.
The food when it arrived was poor. I had fish and chips and my friend commented as soon as it arrived that she had never seen such a small piece of fish!
On looking this hotel upon the web we had hoped for better, as the web site makes it look really good.
Would we go again No.

  • Stayed: March 2014, travelled with friends
    • Value
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
6  Thank Susanne R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
John P, Owner at Chiseldon House, responded to this reviewResponded 20 April 2014

Thank you for your review and for dining with us. I apologise we fell short of our expectations and that our lounge was not available after your meal as it was being redecorated.

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Hotels you might also like...
Also consider these accommodations in or near Swindon
6.5 mi away
Stanton House Hotel
Stanton House Hotel
#2 of 25 in Swindon
821 reviews
6.6 mi away
The Castle & Ball Hotel
The Castle & Ball Hotel
#1 of 1 in Marlborough
659 reviews
1.8 mi away
Alexandra House
Alexandra House
#1 of 1 in Wroughton
1,085 reviews
Show Prices
Show Prices
Show Prices
5.7 mi away
DoubleTree by Hilton Swindon
2.8 mi away
Swindon Marriott Hotel
Swindon Marriott Hotel
#10 of 25 in Swindon
717 reviews
7.3 mi away
Blunsdon House Hotel, BW Premier Collection
Show Prices
Show Prices
Show Prices

Been to Chiseldon House? Share your experiences!

Write a Review Add Photos & Videos

Additional Information about Chiseldon House

Address: New Road | Chiseldon, Swindon SN4 ONE, England
Region: United Kingdom > England > Wiltshire > Swindon
Amenities:
Business Centre with Internet Access Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #18 of 25 Hotels in Swindon
Price Range: £87 - £127 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:3 star — Chiseldon House 3*
Number of rooms: 21
Reservation Options:
TripAdvisor is proud to partner with Booking.com, Ebookers, HotelsClick and LateRooms so you can book your Chiseldon House reservations with confidence. We help millions of travellers each month to find the perfect hotel for both holiday and business trips, always with the best discounts and special offers.
Also Known As:
Chiseldon House Hotel Swindon
Chiseldon Hotel Swindon
Chiseldon House Swindon, Wiltshire

Is This Your TripAdvisor Listing?

Own or manage this property? Claim your listing for free to respond to reviews, update your profile and much more.

Claim Your Listing