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“good hotel, great location”
Review of Haven Hotel

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Haven Hotel
Ranked #9 of 13 Hotels in Poole
Reviewed 26 August 2008

This was our fifth stay at the Haven. It is not cheap (it probably uplifts its rates to take into account its stunning location) but it is good.

Our rooms looked recently refurbished and were certainly big and well appointed. They were at the back so did not have the benefit of the views over Studland Bay that make this place so special (we knew that when we booked - rooms at the back seem a bit cheaper).

The staff are friendly if sometimes not quite as efficient as might be liked. Service on the terrace particularly good be better.

The food is good; the cream teas are something to savour. I do wonder though why a hotel of this quality (and is is quality, I struggle to recognise the hotel from some of the other reviews) makes its guests queue up to make their own toast in the mornings!

  • Stayed: August 2008, travelled as a couple
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Thank steamtrainian
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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1,551 - 1,557 of 1,604 reviews

Reviewed 22 June 2008

Stayed here for a friends birthday celebration. Friendly staff, great food for our function of 35 people and amazing location.
However the standard of the bedrooms lets the hotel down. They are overpriced and look like they were last refurbished in the 1970's with a low budget! Uncomfortable beds, dreadful pillows and wardrobes that don't have enough height to hang a regular length dress. The room was also very noisy and too warm.

  • Stayed: June 2008, travelled with family
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3  Thank bobseylala
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 7 May 2008

For our wedding anniversary, my wife and I stayed at The Haven for two nights over the May Bank Holiday weekend. We were given a ‘sea view’ room on the third floor at the not inconsiderable rate of £272 per night. When we got to the room we were shocked. It looked like something out of the 70's. The decor was dreadful, with marked walls and a chunk missing from the door. It was very shabby and hadn’t been decorated for years. The taps in the hand basin didn't work and the bed was possibly the smallest double bed I have ever seen. We asked to be moved to another room and were then given a 'harbour view' room on the second floor. This was supposedly a refurbished room, which seems to amount to a flat screen tv on the wall. Same dreary decor, but at least the taps worked. The double was again small, but worse it was so soft and uncomfortable that my wife woke up with terrible back pain the next day. The mattress was changed the next day and was an improvement, but not brilliant.
We were amazed at the low standards at this hotel. When we go away we expect to stay in somewhere at least as good as our home. The Haven seems to rely solely on its location and overcharges for what it is. Maybe when Hotel du Vin opens in Poole, one of the management will stay there to see the sort of standards their guests expect.
Overall we wouldn't recommend this hotel to anyone and certainly won't stay there again.

  • Stayed: May 2008, travelled as a couple
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5  Thank TigerEssex
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 22 January 2008

Stayed here on a one night spa break. Our room was recently refurbished to a very high standard and had beautiful views over Sandbanks beach. Compact but good bathroom with spa bath.

The service at this hotel could not be faulted. Everyone was polite and friendly and went out of their way to help. One or two of the younger female staff had difficulties with the English language, but this was the exception rather than the rule.

Food was excellent - but dont eat in the a la carte restaurant if you are VERY hungry. Minimalist would be the most accurate description - but extremely good.

The spa treatments were good, but the spa itself could be better. The Spa lacks atmosphere and could be made so much more relaxing and seductive by using aromatherapy and by getting rid of the floor to ceiling tiles in each treatment room, dimming the lights more and using better soft furnishings. When you are being pampered you want to experience the whole thing not just when you close your eyes and imagine you are somewhere else.

The sauna and hot tub were out of action which was disappointing but the outdoor pool was good. The spa pool was also disappointing as many areas were not functioning.

Overall, an excellent experience, but could be better.

  • Stayed: January 2008, travelled as a couple
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2  Thank TravellerSouthCoast
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 21 January 2008

What a great hotel rooms lovely & fresh. Very large great location. Ate in the restaurant which was lovely. Highly recomend for a romantic break

  • Stayed: October 2006, travelled as a couple
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2  Thank J0J0
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 17 September 2007

The good things first - the views from our second floor balcony were superb aided by unseasonably good September weather. We were on a tariff that included a la carte dinner in the La Roche restaurant and the food was good on each of the three evenings we were there accompanied by adequate service. We had some special requests for food that were always met. The wine list was satisfactory without the enormous mark-ups that you get in some hotels. The special requests for champagne and chocolates in the room were all met. Breakfast, although uninspiring, was hot despite self service from a buffet, and of good quality. The staff were generally friendly and of the three we asked they all said they enjoyed working there. The racks for leaflets detailing attractions etc. were extensive and pristine - a contrast to many other hotels where they look like a collection of waste paper!

Now the not so good - internet booking which I used is confusing without clear indications of what you get for each class of room. You have to work hard to work out what you are getting for your money! Although we had one of the best (and most expensive rooms) in the hotel, the cleanliness, housekeeping and general maintenance was poor. The large balcony - the first thing to be seen as you enter the room - had peeling paintwork and a damaged tiled floor that had been poorly repaired and constituted a tripping hazard. The heated towel rail did not work; the waste lever to the washbasin had the operating knob missing causing a risk of injury if used; a light bulb needed replacing and never was despite being reported; the room refrigerator hardly cooled and when I reported this I was told "they are all like that - design fault!" Cleaning was superficial at best and frequently toiletries, face flannels and coffee/biscuits from the hospitality tray were not replaced. Complimentary bottled water was not provided - normally standard in hotels charging these sort of prices in my experience. The public lounges are themed and attractive but corridors, passageways and other public areas are very dated and none too clean. The parking is a shambles - the coded exit gates are not working and the parking area is used by locals without business at the hotel. There does not seem to be any policing of the facility. The management appeared to be invisible and no interest was taken in my list of issues which I related to the receptionist when checking out.

Overall only come for the views and the food!

  • Stayed: September 2007, travelled as a couple
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8  Thank bonzo26
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 19 August 2007

Took the opportunity of having a 4 day break in The Haven having been there for a wedding reception some years ago. OK, it's not cheap, but I found it just as I wanted - fantastic view over Poole Harbour, superb restaurant, wonderful bar with a panoramic view. The (double) room was not massive, but more than adequate, with a small well-appointed bathroom. A lovely balcony where I ate breakfast delivered to my room was a major plus point in my opinion - I could have sat there all day watching the boats go by... The room was a tad tired but certainly had character and charm.
If you're the sort of person that doesn't anticipate spending all day in their room watching the LCD telly, then this is a good place. The staff were very helpful, and "La Roche" restaurant (available as a supplement) was just stunning. The bar and lounges are peaceful and well furnished. If I wanted somewhere quiet to write a novel I'd happily set up camp in the Marconi Lounge (!) Luxury does come at a price however, but I can honestly say I had no regrets at all when settling the bill for my stay there. Will definitely return.

  • Stayed: August 2007, travelled solo
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5  Thank DaveLondon_UK
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Haven Hotel

Address: 161 Banks Road | Sandbanks, Poole BH13 7QL, England (Formerly FJB Collection - The Haven)
Region: United Kingdom > England > Dorset > Poole
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Centre with Internet Access Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#3 On the Beach Hotel in Poole
#3 Luxury Hotel in Poole
Price Range: £79 - £173 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4 star — Haven Hotel 4*
Number of rooms: 84
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Haven Hotel is a luxurious four-star spa hideaway. Perched at the tip of the exclusive Sandbanks peninsula in Poole and surrounded by sea and sand. With direct access to seven miles of Blue Flag beaches and just a couple of steps away from Purbeck over the Shell Bay chain ferry. It’s your gateway to South Coast adventure. Featuring elegant and well-appointed bedrooms with many of which offering ocean view balconies. We believe that these naturally beautiful surroundings deserve food that’s a little special. Highly acclaimed by locals, The Point Restaurant serves a two AA-Rosette awarded cuisine helmed by Head Chef Jason Hornbuckle. When the sun shines, our terrace is an enviable spot for alfresco dining. Why not indulge yourself at the Haven Spa and prepare to be pampered and spoilt? Whether working up a sweat in the gym or relaxing in the outdoor heated swimming pool, the Haven Spa is the perfect place to unwind your mind and reinvigorate your body in complete luxury. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Haven Poole
Haven Hotel Poole, Dorset

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