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“Nice 2 Day Break”

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Harbour Heights Hotel
Ranked #3 of 13 Hotels in Poole
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed 21 October 2011

We've known the Harbour Heights for many years but this was the first time we've stayed. I found the new October rates on Booking.Com and upgraded to a room with a view. Our top floor room was very clean and well equiped and wire access for free internet. We ate in the restaurant on our first night and the only disapointing part was that our £25 mature steaks had too much pepper sauce "on them" knowing what I know now I'd have asked for the sauce to be in a little jug. Otherwise very nice for a special occasion. Compared to a few years ago the view isn't quite as stunning as trees have grown somewhat. It's still the best eating view of Poole Harbour in my opinion though - & yes I know Cafe Shore, Shell Bay and Italian Gossip etc. might disagree. I digress - very friendly staff helped make it a memorable short stay - Breakfast was very good as well - no rush and even when we had a coffee afterwards this was "included" .

Room Tip: Dont forget to ask for a window table when you are booking to eat
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  • Stayed: October 2011, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank Skipm12
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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847 - 853 of 959 reviews

Reviewed 28 September 2011

Got a sea view room on the cheap via lastminute so had relatively low expectations. My feelings were as mixed as some of the reviews about this place. Its in a great location, the staff were friendly and helpful, the room smart without being posh and the breakfast was excellent. Evening meal only average given the top notch price. It just seems to lack that something that makes you want to rave about it to a friend and the reception certainly doesnt give you the first impression wow factor. But if you can get a cheap deal, its a real bargain.

Room Tip: A sea view room is a must
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  • Stayed: September 2011, travelled on business
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1  Thank BillyboyG
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 20 September 2011

This was my first stay at this hotel and it will probably be my last. Nothing was terrible about it, but it is very over priced for what you get. Our first room was under an air-conditioning unit, so it sounded like a helicopter was permanently circling overhead, the room also vibrated! So we asked to be moved which they did without any problems, but after looking at several rooms they all seemed to be quite small and fairly basic. The Harbour Heights aspires to be a modern boutique hotel, but I feel its very mainstream. The main attraction I would say is the terrace which has a lovely view of the bay. I didn't eat there, so I can't comment on the food, however the breakfast was very average.

Room Tip: Do not stay in room 110 as it's located above an air-conditioning unit which is very noisy and s...
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  • Stayed: September 2011, travelled as a couple
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2  Thank SaskiaSarratt
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 19 September 2011

This was our second visit to the hotel, the first being two years ago when we had a fabulous time. At that time they had a fantastic General Manager, who was in touch with his guests. It is obvious that he is not there any more, from the reception staff attitude towards the guests. The impression they give is "let's ignore the guest, they are a nuisance." That seems to be in line with the hotel's parking policy. The first thing that greets you is not someone to help with your luggage, but notices warning you that if you do not enter your car registration number you will receive a hefty fine. These notices are all over the ground floor of the hotel. If they want to stop illegal parking put up a barrier with an intercom. Oh no, that won't work, it would mean the receptionist would have to answer the phone, something they do not like doing. We rang down to reception on more than one occasion and the phone went unanswered. This may be something that the new General Manager, who I understand is starting to-day, should want to address. Also the fact that on checking in it would be nice to be offered help with your luggage, especially when you have walking difficulties, and use a stick. We went to the hotel to celebrate our wedding anniversary, which went unacknowledged by the hotel, which is not terrible, but the fact that my husband ordered flowers for me, via the receptionist the day before, in person, and they forgot, is terribly disappointing. Saying sorry is not enough.
Our room was adequate, but my booking was made only a few days before, so that couldn't be helped, and although the view was stunning, if you are visiting try and avoid the third floor rooms as, if ours was anything to go by,they are small.
As to the food,inconsistent is the word. Breakfast, if you were not on an inclusive rate, was expensive. Particularly the buffet, which was poor. However the cooked breakfast, which they now serve to you, was good. Also, providing you requested strong coffee, it was very good.
Dinner was some good, some poor, and some very very expensive dishes, especially the fish specials. Really overall not wonderful.
This hotel cannot continue to trade on the location, which is spectacular, when the staff, with the exception of two of the waitresses, continue to give the impression that they are not happy in their jobs. We felt, especially after a recent stay at a spectacularly good hotel in England, extremely let down.

  • Stayed: September 2011, travelled as a couple
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4  Thank WellTravelled09
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 27 August 2011

Great hotel, always a winner when you want an excellent meal over looking sandbanks and beyond. Cant understand why people on Tripadvisor moan I just don't know what they are expecting to get. Top class well done to a professional team.

  • Stayed: May 2011, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank spyinthesky45
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 2 August 2011

We just wanted to write to say that this hotel REALLY is amazing, having read many of the negative tripadvisor reviews we were quite worried as to what service our guests (and of course us!!!) would receive for our special day, however we couldn't have had better! Admittedly when we went for our "taster menu" we DID witness some of the lax members of staff and their attitude so can see where some of the reviews are coming from however we did mention this to our wonderful wedding co-ordinator (Anna) and this was dealt with promptly!

We would HIGHLY recommend this as a venue for a wedding, we were lucky enough to have one of the hottest days of the year which meant we could fully utilise the superb terrace with its memorable and breathtaking views across Poole harbour but I do genuinely believe it'd have been just as amazing were it a cloudy overcast day.

My mum and I stayed in the hotel the night before (a non seaview room) but it was lovely, a big room with the most fantastic jacuzzi bath and out of this world power shower!!!!! It made the preparations for my big day very pleasant indeed! Breakfast was delicious with locally sourced meat (gorgeous sausages and even black pudding!), I would agree with the toaster, it caught me out the first morning but had it sussed the day after! I'm sure the staff would be only too pleased to help should you have any "issues"! What we love in particular about this hotel (despite it having THE BEST location in Poole!!!) is that it's part of a very prestigious chain within Sandbanks however unlike it's sister hotels (Sandbanks and Haven) it really doesn't have the pompous attitude that the others have. Any resident/visitor/guest here really is made to feel very special and they genuinely treat everyone the same.

The Wedding itself was AMAZING and I have to say it's because the staff were fabulous, they really had adopted the "nothing is too much trouble" attitude, everything was checked with us and they catered for our guests with the upmost professionalism and left us all feeling incredibly pleased. MANY of our guests commented on how wonderful the staff had been too!

As for Anna, she's had a tough initiation having only been at the HH for a few months now but I have to say she has been EXCELLENT, I've badgered and pestered her and she's been prompt to reply and done her best to make it exactly the day we'd hoped for (and more!!!!), she is an absolute asset to the hotel and I hope they hang on to her tightly!

Thank you all SO SO much for making our day the most marvellous day ever, we'll always have a special place in our hearts for this lovely hotel and look forward to returning, HUGEST thanks, Steph & Chris Flay (28th July 2011) xx

Room Tip: 207 (the bridal suite) is STUNNING!!! Balcony has panoramic views across the harbour.
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  • Stayed: July 2011, travelled with family
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1  Thank Sjc01uk
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 26 July 2011

We were four ladies looking for a relaxing weekend and booked the Harbour Heights as my husband and I had previously had a lovely time at the sister hotel, The Sandbanks.
I thought the hotel was fairly expensive (£400 per night for the 4 of us) but hoped it would be worth it. The rooms were OK, no complaints but nothing to write home about. What we did complain about was the breakfast. This was a buffet style - we expected to help ourselves to fruit / cereal /juice but thought that we would have a choice of a hot breakfast which would be served to the table. There was hardly any fresh fruit available, there was no choice (fish would have been nice) and the fried breakfast was just not replenished fast enough and was not particularly hot. This lead to people hanging round the serving table waiting for food to come out and exchanging views - so I know that others were not happy! We had to make our own toast and the toaster was not set properly so it was either hot bread or burnt depending on how many times you put it through. This would have been OK for a business trip when one wants to eat breakfast and go, but not an hotel where service is part of a relaxing break.

We complained at the time and were asked to complete forms by the Duty Manager which we did but we did not receive a response which was requested. I then emailed the hotel from their 'contact us' page on the website to which I received no reply and I then phoned the hotel and asked for the email address of the General Manager. Again I received no reply. Not good customer service from a 4* hotel! I won't be returning.

Stayed: June 2011, travelled with friends
6  Thank valforbes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Harbour Heights Hotel

Address: 73 Haven Road | Sandbanks, Poole BH13 7LW, England (Formerly FJB Collection - Harbour Heights)
Region: United Kingdom > England > Dorset > Poole
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Centre with Internet Access Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Restaurant Room Service Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#1 On the Beach Hotel in Poole
#2 Luxury Hotel in Poole
#4 Romantic Hotel in Poole
Price Range: £97 - £188 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4 star — Harbour Heights Hotel 4*
Number of rooms: 38
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Whether you're retreating for romance or overnighting on business. Harbour Heights offers boutique and stylish surroundings, paired with panoramic outlooks over Poole Harbour and beyond. Every bedroom is carefully designed for comfort with premium vi-spring beds and jacuzzi spa baths to bubble away in. Many also boast harbour views with balconies to watch the world float by. We want our guests to experience exceptional food in beautiful surroundings. To do justice to the view, Harbar Bistro offers two AA Rosette Awarded cuisine, maintained by Head Chef Loic Gratadoux. When the weather's welcoming, bask in the sunshine with a glass of champagne or light lunch on the terrace overlooking the magical harbour islands. The Harbour Heights Hotel is located just a short stroll away from the prestigious Sandbanks beach and stunning Poole Harbour. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Harbour Heights Poole
Harbour Heights Hotel Poole, Dorset

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