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“Family Break”

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Macdonald Cardrona Hotel, Golf & Spa
Ranked #1 of 1 Hotels in Cardrona
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed 13 May 2014

Just returned from a 2 night family stay at the Macdonald Cardrona and doubt I'd book again.

Originally tried to book on Booking.com but the website had incorrect information showing so had to ring Macdonald directly. I was told by the operator that I would be upgraded to an Executive Family room which, instead of having a sofa bed, had 2 single beds and a double.

On arrival at the hotel, the upgrade to 'Executive' actually meant that there was indeed a sofa bed, with a camp bed and a double. And two dressing gowns. And a view of the golf course. After querying this with reception, I was told that Reservations had given me the wrong information. What a let down!

Due to lack of space in the room, we asked housekeeping to remove the camp bed and my kids shared the sofa bed for our two night stay.

On the subject of beds. Be careful.
The double bed was incredibly uncomfortable; I constantly woke through the night because of springs digging in my back. Not very executive!

A short while after arriving in the room, I was flicking through the guest information book and discovered a disgusting, vulgar message which had been left by either a previous guest or disgruntled employee. I took this down to reception and reported it to the lady on duty who didn't seem in the slightest bit bothered by my unpleasant find. Not great customer service.

Breakfast in the hotel was pleasant enough; cold buffet selection then hot meals to order which were nice, but please, hotel manager - please sort your dishwasher out. On both mornings, every single glass had dried orange juice welded to them. Not very hygienic at all and extremely off putting. The dining area seemed large enough for the amount of diners but the furniture was shoddy - not what you would expect in an upmarket hotel.

The pool area was nice and my kids enjoyed that, but there is no clear path for parents who do not wish to swim and just want to observe on the loungers. Myself and another guest were told that there were blue overshoes available so we could walk through. There wasn't.

The one saving grace for this hotel is the location. With stunning views of Cardrona's hills and it's proximity to Peebles and Edinburgh, I can see why people chose to stay there. Unfortunately though, I'll be booking the Barony Castle next time I'm in the area.

Stayed: May 2014, travelled with family
Thank Lisa B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
MacCardrona, General Manager at Macdonald Cardrona Hotel, Golf & Spa, responded to this reviewResponded 15 May 2014

Thank you very much for taking the time to write a review and provide us with feedback.

I am very sorry that your stay was not as enjoyable and as perfect as it should have been. Please be assured that we do action all guest feedbcak that we receive and your comments will be used to improve our service and standards where possible.

Kind Regards
Stuart Maxwell
General Manager

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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2,059 - 2,065 of 2,796 reviews

Reviewed 13 May 2014

We were delighted with our deal for a two night stay with DBB for 12 intrepid golfers on both nights.
The service on the first night dinner was very poor. Red & white wine was ordered neither bottle was presented to check if it was what we ordered and neither was offered for tasting. It was subsequently discovered that the white wine was not chilled and the red, wine after it was poured into glasses of a few diners, was found to be an incorrect wine. A Chilean Merlot had been ordered and was in fact found to be a Chilean Cabernet Sauvignon. This was drawn to the attention of the waiter who served the wine and his excuse was the C Sauvignon was served as they had run out of Chilean Merlot. We said this was unacceptable as it had not been drawn to our attention and we had not been given the opportunity to make a different choice. He said he would draw this to the attention of his manager but no recompense was offered.
Further, only enough bread was offered to half the diners. Also at no point during the meal did any staff member ask as if everything was to our satisfaction, as is the case at most good hotels and restaurants in my opinion.
We then discussed our dissatisfaction with what appeared to be a senior looking member of staff. Her explanation was that bread was only provided for those diners taking soup as their first course. This we found was very poor service.
On the second night's dinner the service improved significantly. We were all welcomed to our tables, bread was offered to all diners regardless of what starters they were having and their was no issues regarding wine or food.
The adjacent golf course was a good test and set in lovely Border's countryside on y the banks of the the River Tweed. Although a long course, with a lot of walking between greens and tees the golf was enjoyed by us all.
I found the wet-side facilities disappointing. There was a long pool, no jacuzzi and the sauna was out of operation. The steam room was average. There was a gymnasium and spa facilities which I did not use.
The hotel although satisfactory was rather soul-less. At check-in there was no offer of baggage been transported to our rooms.

  • Stayed: May 2014, travelled with friends
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Thank Salim P
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
MacCardrona, General Manager at Macdonald Cardrona Hotel, Golf & Spa, responded to this reviewResponded 14 May 2014

Thank you very much for your feedback. I will ensure all of the points you have raised are shared with the team and we will ensure your comments are used to improve our service where it has fallen below our usual high standards.

Kind Regards
Stuart Maxwell
General Manager

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 11 May 2014

I just spent a couple of nights here and I had a really relaxing time.

I didn't play the golf course or opt for any of the spa treatments, which seems to be the main features and attractions of this hotel, overlooking a lovely golf course and hilly view in a very quiet location.

The dining experience was not great.

The food was really nice and couldn't be faulted, but the service was slow at times with a few mistakes in the orders and they got my bill wrong.

We had pre-booked our dinner table for both nights, but it appears that many guests who hadn't couldn't get a table for dinner and were told that they had to eat in the bar area. The food for the bar area seemed to come from the same kitchen and looked really nice, but bear that in mind if you are wanting to have the more formal dinner option.

The other buffet breakfast problem was that there appeared to be more guests than there was available fresh hot food, which meant that there was a queue at the buffet table waiting for fresh eggs, sauasages, etc, to be replenished. A plate of fresh food would be added, then gone in an instant so the next lot had to queue for more food coming out.

The dining room (including the dining area at the bar) seemed to be far too small for the number of guests staying. As a result the hot food was being consumed faster than it was being brought to the buffet tables.

Having said that, the food was really nice and obviously fresh - which is the opposite of many buffet breakfasts in hotels where there is an abundance of cooked food that seems to lie there for ages.

The room we had was spacious and perfectly clean. The bathroom was a good size and had a separate bath and shower.

The hotel is situated in a lovely area and there is a path in front of the hotel that leads into Peebles that you can walk in about an hour at a leisurely pace.

I would definitely recommend this hotel, but I would also suggest you do 3 things:
1. Make sure you book your dinner slot in the restaurant in advance;
2. Check your bill very carefully;
3. Go to breakfast early to avoid the crowds, as the resataurant is not big enough to accomodate the number of guests and the wait for fresh food can be very lengthy, especially if you order something from the kitchen rather than taken from the buffet table.

  • Stayed: May 2014, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank Eebz1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
MacCardrona, General Manager at Macdonald Cardrona Hotel, Golf & Spa, responded to this reviewResponded 14 May 2014

Thank you very much for your feedback.

I am sorry there were niggles througout your stay. We have identified that at peak times we do need more dining areas and we do indeed have planning permission to extend our lounge and spa areas.

I do hope your experience will not deter you from returning and we look forward to welcoming you back in the future.

Kind Regards
Stuart Maxwell
General Manager

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Reviewed 11 May 2014

My husband and I stayed here for 2 nights via an Amazon deal on Saturday 3 May departing Monday 5 May on a DBB basis. We arrived and check in was pleasant and we had booked a dinner place for 7pm beforehand as I had read that the dining area is very busy and cannot be guaranteed a place if prior booking is not made. I would agree! We had a room overlooking the Golf course which was pleasant but our room was right above one of the bars and we could not open our window as people were smoking directly below our window and we could smell the smoke, not pleasant. The hotel was very busy probably due to the deals and being a holiday weekend. Our first night dining was a mixed experience. The food was great, The service not so great. I cannot fault the food at all. It was fine dining of a very high standard, our young waiter that took our order was very pleasant. We had ordered a bottle of wine from the Sparkling/Champagne section but when a different waiter brought our wine it didn't look like a "sparkling" I asked the waiter before he opened the bottle if this was a sparkling, he advised "no it is a house wine". I explained that we had ordered a sparkling spumante and he said "no you didn't the bit of paper said house wine" I then advised no that was incorrect and he advised it wasn't!! I didn't want to argue so told him to leave the bottle. But I then got the attention of another waiter, explained what had happened and when the new waiter arrived back, he had the correct bottle of sparkling and said that the order had been mixed up and apologised. That was great. We had no other problems till the end when we had ordered coffee but it didn't turn up for about 20 minutes later and could see after we had reminded someone we were waiting, two staff debating if we had ordered it or not!!.The experience left us feeling like we were troublemakers. Our Saturday night sleep in our room was broken at 2.50am by a foul mouthed drunken man who had locked himself out of his room and was battering on the room to get his mate to waken up but to no avail. He seemed to think the answer to this was to continue at the top of his voice shouting and hurling obscenities to anyone that would listen. He had to get the duty manager to let him in and STILL continued to use foul language. I am unsure if this was directed at the manager or someone else. If the hotel cares to check on this it was Sunday morning at 2.50 am. I was in room 208! 20 minutes later it was all happening again. My sleep well and truly disturbed. Breakfast next morning was table service which was perfect and food and service were fantastic. Dinner later went well and again food and service were great. When we went to sign for our bill, we had only had water and soda/lime to drink, we had been charged for a bottle of wine! We explained we didn't have anything and was told that the amount would not be charged to our bill. Our breakfast on our final day was a buffet which the hotel could not cope with. The hot food was not replenished quickly enough and I was in a line of about 10 people waiting for the eggs, bacon and black pudding to appear. Unfortunately when the plate came out by the time it got to me all the eggs had been taken again, so I had to wait for more again. By the time I got my food and back to my table my food was cold. Please stick to table service. The couple next to us ordered two boiled eggs, they had to ask several times for them and we were aware they had waited at least 20 minutes for them. The rest of our stay was pleasant and the hotel is good, The dining area could be expanded to accommodate for the amount of people. At the end of our stay we checked out and was given our invoice to pay. To our surprise the bottle of wine that we HAD NOT had was on our bill and had not been deducted as promised. After explaining what had happened the amount was deducted. The receptionist who was dealing with us did not ask us how our stay was or if we had any problems otherwise I would have vented my concerns. I think that is the first time I have checked out of a hotel where I have not been asked how my stay was. I felt this summed up the whole situation. At this point that I write I have paid my invoiced amount via my credit card and it has came off my bank details BUT there appears to be an amount of £ 70.00 which is still on hold in my credit card that the hotel has not released yet. There was no mention of this on my final invoice. Yet something else to deal with. Overall the hotel is nice but the service was not what I expected and if I stayed again I would expect a whole different experience to convince me. If the manager reads this feel free to contact me to discuss. Check your records for 3 to 5 May room 208, two adults. You will have my e-mail on record if you wish to discuss.

Room Tip: Ask for a room which is not above any of the bars.
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  • Stayed: May 2014, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank lainey1605
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
MacCardrona, General Manager at Macdonald Cardrona Hotel, Golf & Spa, responded to this reviewResponded 14 May 2014

Dear Lorraine

Thank you for your feedback. I have received your feedback which you sent to us directly following your stay at the hotel and I will respond to you with the contact details you have provided.

I am very sorry that you did not enjoy your stay at Cardrona.

Kind Regards
Stuart Maxwell
General Manager

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Reviewed 9 May 2014

Really enjoyed our stay room was nice and very clean, dinner was lovely and breakfast just as nice staff were all very friendly and helpful. Husband played golf while I just relaxed. Spa was good one of the best steam rooms out definitely will return.

  • Stayed: May 2014, travelled as a couple
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Thank yasmel
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
MacCardrona, General Manager at Macdonald Cardrona Hotel, Golf & Spa, responded to this reviewResponded 14 May 2014

Thank you so much for your kind review, it is very much appreciated by us all.

Kind Regards
Stuart Maxwell
General Manager

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 9 May 2014

My husband bought the break through amazon for 2 nights away for our wedding anniversary. He upgraded to the golf view. The room was large, bathroom clean. The first thing I noticed though was the thread bare carpet in front of the bed and then the curtains were also threadbare. The bed was the most uncomfortable bed ever! My husband actually slept on the sofa bed the second night. However it was not all bad, the food was amazing! It was fresh and delicious and well presented. Breakfast was lovely and the evening meal was fabulous! The staff were lovely but the drinks service could be slow at times. The price of a glass of wine was quite expensive. The stay was okay for the money but I think the hotel is really in need of a wee revamp.

  • Stayed: May 2014, travelled as a couple
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Thank lesleyb1965
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
MacCardrona, General Manager at Macdonald Cardrona Hotel, Golf & Spa, responded to this reviewResponded 14 May 2014

Thank you for your review and for your feedback.

We are currently putting together a programme to refurbish a number of our golf facing bedrooms in 2014 and hope to announce that soon. We are also expecting a delivery of over 100 new beds at the end of July.

I do hope you will choose to return to Cardrona again.

Kind Regards
Stuart Maxwell
General Manager

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

My husband booked dinner, bed and breakfast for me as a special extra treat as he knew I really liked this hotel. We went for three nights from 21st April. As last time, our room was first class; plenty of space, super king-sized bed and very clean, as was the bathroom.
The breakfasts couldn't be better and dinner was an eating experience - full marks for presentation. Portions aren't huge but three courses were more than adequate. Service was a little slow at times and wine is expensive but probably what one should expect of a hotel of this standard. We fully intended to use the pool but there are so many good walks and sights to see we didn't get round to using it - maybe next time. A slight grumble - toiletries weren't replaced and by the end of our visit we had just a sliver of soap - I suppose we could have asked for more! All in all a very pleasurable time.

Room Tip: All rooms are of a high standard. We asked for the fourth floor and were given this. Maybe worth pay...
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  • Stayed: April 2014, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank Maria B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
MacCardrona, General Manager at Macdonald Cardrona Hotel, Golf & Spa, responded to this reviewResponded 9 May 2014

Dear Maria

Thank you for your very kind review. I am delighted that on the whole you enjoyed your stay with us and we look forward to welcoming you back.

I have passed on your comments regarding toiletries to the Head Housekeeper as this should not have happened. I apologise for this lapse.

Kind Regards
Stuart Maxwell
General Manager

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Macdonald Cardrona Hotel, Golf & Spa

Address: Cardrona | Peebles Near Edinburgh, Cardrona, Peebles EH45 8NE, Scotland
Region: United Kingdom > Scotland > Borders > Peebles > Cardrona
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Centre with Internet Access Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 1 Hotels in Cardrona
Price Range: £64 - £149 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4 star — Macdonald Cardrona Hotel, Golf & Spa 4*
Number of rooms: 99
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Macdonald Cardrona Hotel, Golf & Spa in Peebles, offers luxurious contemporary accommodation set in timeless natural surroundings. With the hotel's scenic location on the banks of the River Tweed you'll discover a relaxing haven - just 40 minutes outside Edinburgh and 90 minutes from Glasgow and the North of England - nestled amidst the tranquillity of the Scottish Borders landscape. With an award-winning restaurant, two bars, 99 comfortable and spacious bedrooms and conference and wedding facilities, our hotel in Peebles makes the perfect retreat for a leisure stay and offers a superb backdrop for any special occasion. While you're staying with us, why not try your hand at a round of golf on our 18-hole championship course or enjoy a dip in the pool and a luxurious treatment in our spa and leisure club. Guests can also take advantage of our fishing rights and try to catch some Scottish Salmon along the River Tweed. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Macdonald Cardrona Hotel, Golf Hotel Cardrona
Macdonald Cardrona Hotel, Golf And Spa
Macdonald Cardrona Hotel Country
Macdonald Cardrona Resort Country
Macdonald Cardrona Hotel, Golf & Spa Scotland

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