This is the dirtiest hotel I have ever stayed in.
We stayed for the nights of 21 and 22 April 2014. When we checked in we were given rooms 256 and 258—sea-view twin rooms on the side of the hotel.
Room 258 has been renovated but room 256 hasn't. The renovations are mostly cosmetic. It has smart striped red, brown and cream wallpaper but its en suite bathroom contains an original 1980s avocado bath and toilet, with marbled green tiles to match. That bathroom was so tiny that I couldn't stand upright in it as the toilet roll holder got in the way, and it was difficult to use the toilet as there wasn't enough knee room (see my pictures). I'm a size 14 and 5' 6”, so am not the largest of women. It was so cramped that my husband, who is 6' 2”, couldn't close the door if he was sitting on the toilet, and he couldn't step out of the bath and into the bathroom after he'd had a shower. He ended up leaping out into the bedroom in spectacular and disconcerting fashion. It's a good job he's limber.
When I mentioned the inadequate bathroom and cramped space at reception I was told that the hotel is an old building and it wasn't designed for bathrooms. I understand that: but if they'd made 258 a single room there would be plenty of space for an adequate bathroom.
There was so little space between the beds and the bathroom door that my husband and I had to take turns standing up and sitting down. There was not enough room for us to move around the room at the same time. And while a couple of chairs were supplied we could only use them to sit by the sink, or by the door to the room, as there wasn't enough room to move them so we could sit together.
We used the swimming pool soon after we checked in and as I'd forgotten to take shampoo down to the pool I went back to my room to shower after swimming. I noticed rusty brown blobs in the bath but as I was in a hurry to shower and change I put the shower mat over the marks and showered anyway. The rusty brown blobs mostly washed away, so I doubt the bath had been cleaned at all between the previous occupant leaving and our arrival.
The next morning I showered again and noticed mould in the shower and cracked and missing tiles in the bathroom—this in a room which has apparently been renovated. When dressing, I found bloodstained medical packaging for an insulin pump by the bed, left over from a previous occupant, and I realised that the rusty brown blobs all over the bath must have been blood spatters.
I then went and checked the shower enclosure in our sons' room and that was mouldy too although it was free from bloodstains.
I took the bloodstained packaging down to reception and told them about the mould and the blood splatters, and said it wasn't acceptable. The bloke on reception agreed and offered to give us new rooms. He gave us key-cards so we could inspect the new rooms and although the bathrooms in these new rooms were still mouldy they weren't as bad as our other rooms, and didn't have blood spatters or any obvious bloody litter in them. It was Easter week and I'd had trouble finding an hotel with room for us: I thought it unlikely that we'd be able to find anywhere else to stay, and so I reluctantly agreed to swap rooms.
We were not offered an apology, we were not offered any compensation, and we were not offered any help in moving our bags to our new rooms.
While we were packing our things two cleaning staff came into our rooms and asked to see what we were complaining about. One of them did say sorry, but didn't seem at all surprised that there was mould in the bathrooms. She pointed out that it was very busy in the hotel and said they didn't have time to clean everything.
I do understand that it takes a lot of work to keep a big hotel clean and inviting, and am not surprised that some things get missed: but it would be nice if the cleaners at the Chatsworth House Hotel could at least pick up some litter and rinse the blood out of the baths.
The new rooms were 111 and 116. They were bigger than our previous rooms and on the front of the hotel. Both rooms had been renovated but both retained their original bathrooms.
The handbasin tap in room 111wasn't fixed in properly and moved around when we turned it on. The shower screen over the bath didn't seal properly to the bath, so it was impossible to shower without flooding the bathroom floor.
The bathroom in 116 featured a peach-coloured bath and a white toilet. There was a notice asking us to ensure the shower curtain was placed inside the bath while showering, warning that failure to do this could prove costly (complete with triple exclamation points). These little threatening touches do make a hotel seem homely, don't you think? There was also the usual mouldiness: I wonder how many of its bathrooms are affected.
We sat in the biggest of the two rooms for a while, and then our youngest son went to get something from his room. There was a strange man in the room, checking out the bathroom. He told our son that a leak had been reported and that he was going to put some plastic up around the bath, and not to use it for a couple of hours. The hotel had not asked us if it was ok for someone to go into our rooms and had not even told us it was going to happen.
On our final morning we used the swimming pool again before breakfast and this time I not only remembered my shampoo, I remembered to put in contact lenses before we swam as the first time I'd had to leave my glasses in the changing rooms.
It was so better when I couldn't see what I was swimming in.
There were drifts of grit, dirt and debris in the corners of the pool. My sons found some used elastoplasts in the pool, a couple of hairbands, and a plastic bag. Several of the grilles on the sides of the pools had broken off and not been replaced (the remains of one broken plastic water inlet had been left on the side of the pool). The plaster is bubbling off the walls. Tiles were broken and missing. Part of the ceiling was thick with black mould. And the tiles of the pool were brown and stained, just above the surface of the water: this staining went around the whole pool and could be easily scratched off with a fingernail, which makes me suspect it would be easy to clean off too.
I don't think it's ever been so easy to get my sons out of a swimming pool. And they are not easily daunted by a bit of grubbiness.
I went to shower in the changing rooms but the temperature in the changing room shower (there's only one) is fixed, and was far too hot; and I wasn't too pleased with the mould there, either. So I went up to my room and showered there instead, and had to use the towels I'd already used to dry off with at the poolside as there are no extra towels supplied or available (and yes, I did ask at reception).
All we had to get through now was breakfast. It wasn't too bad: at least this morning the bowl full of chewed-clean prune-stones had been removed from the breakfast buffet. The young man who served us was reasonably quick and cheery, and happily got us some more (warmish) orange juice when we asked. But I would prefer to have not found lipstick smudges on the glasses after we'd finished drinking, just as I would prefer to have not had to change our cutlery for knives and forks which didn't have food dried onto them.
As we took our bags back to the car I noticed that the glass with the brown, dry slice of lemon which had been on a shelf on the landing throughout our stay was still there. As was the milk jug in the cereal bowl, which was balanced on a radiator in another corridor. I bet they're still there, even now.
To top it off, as we drove home to Sheffield yesterday all four of us started to feel queasy and ill, and we've all been ill overnight.
We will not be returning to the Chatsworth House Hotel, and wish I'd never gone. It was a thoroughly unpleasant place to stay.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- We are a Victorian hotel situated in the centre of the promenade. The beach is opposite the hotel and the main shopping street is directly behind and only minutes away from the theatre. We have a very limited spaced free car park within the hotel, the majority of parking is on street on the promenade (£1.50 per day low season £3.00 per day high season (correct at time of posting this message)). Badge holders have free unrestricted parking, except in the coach bays. Please feel free to contact the hotel for any further details. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Chatsworth Hotel Llandudno
- Chatsworth House Hotel Llandudno, Wales