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Radisson Blu Hotel Durham
Ranked #6 of 18 Hotels in Durham
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed 15 June 2014 via mobile

I visited with a group of family and friends for a tame hen party. We arrived in the afternoon and headed straight to the spa facilities. The pool is lovely, just a nice size and not too busy, but the jacuzzi was my highlight - lovely! We then went out for the evening into the town centre which is literally just across the bridge which is at the front of the hotel. The next morning we went down for breakfast which was my favourite part! Couldn't fault it at all, every possible option, plenty of choice and great service. You can even request different food if it isn't on the buffet and the staff will make it for you fresh.
Overall the stay was perfect. Location is excellent, 5 mins max walk into city centre. Staff were lovely and would do anything to help. The room was very clean and had everything we needed, with a fantastic view of the river.
I will definitely be staying again and recommend to friends. It is a hotel that anyone could enjoy!

Stayed: June 2014, travelled with friends
Thank NorthernHonestTravel
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Louise T, Front Office Service Manager at Radisson Blu Hotel Durham, responded to this reviewResponded 17 June 2014

Thank you for your excellent 5* review of the hotel
I’m glad you enjoyed your stay with us and hope will come and visit again shortly.
Kind Regards,
Louise

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Reviewed 14 June 2014

We spent four nights at RadissonBlu Durham, as a couple, within a group coach party.
In summary it was one of the best hotels we have stayed in, uk or Europe, with the sole exception of the evening meal service to the whole group, which at best was 'inconsistent', at worst 'disorganised'.
Here are some of the many plus points :
On arrival the Reception staff were extremely, efficient, courteous and welcoming.
Every person or couple in the group was individually welcomed, any queries answered fully.
Later in our stay we had a query about Newcastle and the Reception staff were very helpful.
Our bedroom was generously dimensioned, incidentally a good view of the river.
Plenty of room for two people to move around and pass each other.
One small excellent feature was the shelf for putting suitcases on, took our two side by side.
( usually one of you has to use the desk, or even the floor ). The air-conditioning was a bit 'hit & miss' at different times of day, but the windows could be partially opened to ensure fresh air ventilation at all times. This was not a problem.
For the few smokers in the Group there were comfortable seats on the exterior front patio with an ashtray.
The Breakfasts were out of this world in terms of excellence.
There were about six or seven really hot dishes in separate cauldrons, such as bacon, sausages, mushrooms, potato wedges, scrambled egg, etc. Each cauldron kept the food within really hot, and the quantity of each item was vast, so much so one wonders whether they have to waste large quantities of unconsumed food. Obviously a wide range of cold breakfast items also. Then there were serving staff around who encouraged you to order eggs done by another method than scrambled, and such exotica as kippers, done to order in about ten minutes.
In practice there was no need to avail oneself of these as the standard breakfast items were more than enough in both variety and quantity.

All this excellence was somewhat diminished when it came to the evening meals, not the quality or quantity of the food --which was again excellent in its cooking, but the service.
We ate four nights evening meals. As a group we were asked to choose either an 18.30 hrs timing or 20.30 hrs. Our party chose 1830.hrs. We were told this would keep our party nicely clear of the ordinary individual hotel diners. Well it would if our service had got going from the 18.30 hrs start point.
Seating was in table groups of four, excellent so far. For a group there was a 'Set' menu but still giving three choices of Starter, three choices of Mains, three choices of Dessert then Tea or Coffee. On the first night the menu was themed as a 'Beamish' night and set out on well designed and pictorial cards, one at each diner's place. As soon as we sat down a Server came around and --immediately-- demanded of each diner their choice for all of Starter, Main, Dessert --THEN the pictorial menu card was literally snatched out of the hands of each diner as they uttered their preferences, no chance at all to study it further. This was a pity as there was then a 25 minute wait before the Starters actually arrived at table, and it would have been nice to have been able to fill the time studying the well produced card.
Throughout each evening meal the whole service action was protracted with long waits between each serving and each clearance of plates. On the first night the fish course (Cod) was popular as a Main, beautifully cooked but quite cold when it came to table. Similarly on the second night the same result with the fish option of Main course cold again. Clearly no fault of the cooks but of the delay from kitchen to table. On both first and second nights the whole meal took approx. two hours and we were still seated at table at 20.30 hrs.
Incidentally there was a largely different crew of Servers each night and the third night, although the same procedures applied, that crew really scurried around and we were finished by 20.00hrs.
The different crews also caused there to be widely different practices each night on small matters :
e.g. first night there was generous supply of drinking water on every table, some in jugs some in really large flagons. Also, as people drank it, the Servers --without being asked-- continually came and replenished water supplies. Excellent. Second night there was no water on tables whatsoever. People started asking for some and, astonishingly, one male Server appeared with a SINGLE jug of water from which he proceeded to fill about one inch of water into people's individual glasses. Several people said 'can we have some more please ?' but they were totally ignored and no more water came that evening.
All this was a great pity as the quality of the food was excellent and items varied across the four nights, it was just the method of service which was unworkable. Surely the Hotel needs to note the excellence of its own Breakfast service and introduce an element of self-service into evening meals for Groups. Self-service Soup for Starters course would be a good 'start'.
As stated this was a 'near-perfect' hotel in all respects except the procedure for serving evening meals to Groups. If we ever need to stay in Durham as Individuals we wold most definitely stay at RadissonBlu --this would at least avoid the Group evening meal syndrome.

  • Stayed: June 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Thank P R P
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Louise T, Front Office Service Manager at Radisson Blu Hotel Durham, responded to this reviewResponded 17 June 2014

I'm delighted that you enjoyed your stay overall and wouldn't hesitate to return to stay with us on your next visit to Durham. I am, however, disappointed to hear that the evening meal service put a damper on your stay. Please be assured that all of your comments have been taken on board and the Food and Beverage teams have been made aware so that corrective action can be taken and hopefully by your next visit we can exceed all of your expectations!
Kind Regards,
Louise

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 14 June 2014


On arrival we checked in staff where very friendly. Pool was up to a good standard. Breakfast was very good. Room had a mini bar and bed was good as well. Good views as we'll will be coming back as soon as possible.

Stayed: May 2014, travelled with family
Thank Tom R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Louise T, Front Office Service Manager at Radisson Blu Hotel Durham, responded to this reviewResponded 17 June 2014

I’m delighted you enjoyed your stay and hope to welcome you back soon!
Kind Regards,
Louise

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Reviewed 14 June 2014

As the title suggests, this hotel easily meets all modern business and leisure requirements but falls short in respect of the finished product. This is disappointing as the hotel really has pretty much all you will require viz: modern air conditioned, well soundproofed and nicely presented rooms, an attractive, modern reception with excellent, direct access from both front and rear of the hotel. An ideal location for access on foot into the town centre and equally good vehicular access to and from the spacious hotel car park at the rear. A pretty impressive gym and reasonable pool is also a big plus to the more health/leisure visitor.What in my opinnion lets it down is the dining experience. I fully concur with previous reviewers Matthew Cole and Pudworth regarding the breakfasts, the same grease covered sausages under silver cloches not warm enough to melt said grease, to which I would add the wait for fried eggs and overcooked bacon. The plates in the plate heaters were cold, not the end of the world I admit, but why have a sign next to them telling you to be aware of the hot plates supplied for enhancing your eating pleasure? I ate in the Felini restaurant on four occasions last week and found the food did not meet my expectations at every sitting. Reasons such as cold food, the rib eye was not cooked to requested medium rare then rare on a second occasion [both times well done] and had an unpleasant burnt food oil flavour and aroma. The pork fillet parma ham wrapped was also very overcooked and dry, it seems the food is cooked in advance and kept heated to me. With the panfried cod on another evening the white bean puree under the fish was no more than a thin liquid. This should not be allowed to carry on and in my opinion the reason these issues exist is simply because no person in a management role was present either in the bar /restaurant area or for that matter around reception. This Hotel needs this issue addressing quickly as it and its guests deserve this. P.S. good free wifi.

Room Tip: top floor rooms have river views and are business class
See more room tips
  • Stayed: June 2014, travelled on business
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Thank jonandfam
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Louise T, Front Office Service Manager at Radisson Blu Hotel Durham, responded to this reviewResponded 17 June 2014

Thank you for your feedback regarding your stay with us. I appreciate the time taken to provide us your feedback because only through our guests can we address areas of concern and continuously improve services. Please be assured that all of your comments have been taken on board and passed on to the relevant departments in order for us to address the issues and provide corrective action so that hopefully on your next visit with us we can exceed your expectations!
Kind Regards,
Louise

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 14 June 2014

Friendly, helpful,professional staff, great location. good - large, clean rooms, bathrooms well arranged and quality/range of toiletries. Adequate buffet breakfast - although 'hot' choices only warm! convenient parking, a real plus in Durham. great river views across to castle beyond.

  • Stayed: June 2014, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Review collected in partnership with Radisson Blu Hotels
Thank Caroline M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Louise T, Front Office Service Manager at Radisson Blu Hotel Durham, responded to this reviewResponded 17 June 2014

Thank you for your review
I’m glad you enjoyed your stay with us and hope will come and visit again shortly.
Kind Regards,
Louise

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 13 June 2014

My trip to Sunderland was for business and was delighted when I arrived a the Raddison Blu. I loved that it was a modern and well equiped hotel, located a stones through away from Durham town centre, overlooking a river. I would certainly stay at the Radisson Blu again.

  • Stayed: June 2014, travelled on business
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Review collected in partnership with Radisson Blu Hotels
1  Thank Robin K
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Louise T, Front Office Service Manager at Radisson Blu Hotel Durham, responded to this reviewResponded 17 June 2014

Thank you for your excellent review!
I'm delighted you enjoyed your stay with us and keep us in such high regards! I hope you can come back and visit with us again very soon

Kind Regards,
Louise

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 12 June 2014 via mobile

This hotel is clean and the rooms are decent however it is lacking a four star feel.

The bar and restaurant are really missing a soul. I went to have dinner at about 9pm when there were only a few other diners eating and was shown to a table that had been set but needed wiping. Nobody came to take my order so I gave up...

Room service was okay but I have never had a tuna nicous salad served with hp sauce and tomato ketchup. And the dressed salad was swimming in oil so not really a dressing at all.

Breakfast was a bit of a farce really. A chap askes if you've had breakfast before and when you say no he just points you into the restaurant and tells you to enjoy it! Not really clear about where to sit or what to do.... Breakfast choice is limited. The sausages were covered in congealed fat and the fruit salad and cold meats bar had limited choice and it was hard to access due to a plastic roof that obscured what you were choosing. Drinks were strange too ... coffee was served at the table but if you wanted milk you had to get it yourself and tea was completely self service. Since nobody tells you what to do you spend more time trying to make eye contact with a waiter then wander around trying to work what to do than you do eating.

So will I come back? Yes but to the Premier Inn across the river. Much better choice of food and service and the rooms are on a par. I have stayed at some fab Radisson Blus but sadly this wasn't one of them. When I mentioned the restaurant to the receptionist she wasn't surprised at all so I suspect I didn't visit when they were having an off day.

Stayed: June 2014, travelled on business
2  Thank Matthew_Cole
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Louise T, Front Office Service Manager at Radisson Blu Hotel Durham, responded to this reviewResponded 17 June 2014

Thank you for your review of the hotel, however I’m sorry that you were disappointed with your experience. Please be assured that your feedback regarding the food has been passed on to the relevant departments and hopefully on any future visits we can exceed your expectations in that area
Kind Regards,
Louise

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Radisson Blu Hotel Durham

Address: Frankland Lane, Durham DH1 5TL, England
Phone Number:
Region: United Kingdom > England > Durham > Durham
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Centre with Internet Access Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#2 Spa Hotel in Durham
#2 Business Hotel in Durham
#3 Luxury Hotel in Durham
#4 Romantic Hotel in Durham
#4 Family Hotel in Durham
Price Range: £81 - £165 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4 star — Radisson Blu Hotel Durham 4*
Number of rooms: 207
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Overlooking the River Wear, Radisson Blu Hotel, Durham presents a prime location for a visit to England. Voted "Best City in the UK" by Conde Nast Traveller, Durham has all the culture and charm you're looking for in an English town. Find UNESCO World Heritage sites and attractions Durham Cathedral, Durham Castle and Durham University less than 3 kilometres away. The 207 well-kept, modern bedrooms and suites offer 4-star amenities. Collage Restaurant offers a unique twist on the British Brassiere with a range of signature dishes and British fare. The Bar serves a food menu, great drinks and classic cocktails early into the morning. Unwind at the fitness and wellness facilities which include a swimming pool. Enjoy helpful services like on-site parking, express laundry and One Touch Service. The conference space houses 11 meeting rooms which can be used for all types of meetings and social occasions for up to 500 people. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Radisson Blu Hotel, Durham Hotel Durham
Radisson Durham

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