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“A wedding to remember!!!”

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Lumley Castle Hotel
Ranked #5 of 18 Hotels in Durham
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed 3 August 2014

We would like to thank everyone involved in our wedding celebration at Lumley Castle on the 5th of July 2014. It was WONDERFUL! From the moment I contacted the castle there was someone to assist with our every need. Claire was there to support us, and later Laura assisted in our introduction to the castle. But on the day, June held our hands. Anything we needed, she took care of, immediately. She certainly knows her stuff. Thank you June! My family was well cared for, the staff was helpful and friendly, and everyone thoroughly enjoyed the evening in the Baron’s Hall. A night to remember!

My husband and I stayed in room 60, and way up in the north eastern castle turret. The room had a four poster bed and window seating, I LOVED it! We had a room with the sink and toilet hidden in the closet. It was priceless! However, the closet was SO short. I had problems hanging my long dresses, not including my wedding dress.

On our wedding night I tried to slip under the covers littered with flower petals. To my surprise I discovered that the sheets were doubled over, making it really difficult to do so. We thought, how negligent of the staff to not completely make the bed. However, it was not until the next day that we discovered it was all a prank of my sisters.

The next morning we showered in the bath which I must admit I had little expectations of as the castle is 14th century. To my surprise, the water ran hot almost immediately. I’ve showered at the best hotels in Las Vegas, and they have not had the power, or the temperature that this shower had. Excellent!

At breakfast, we had a room reserved for my family and friends. Everyone thoroughly enjoyed their breakfast, and appreciated the service. Thank you to all of the serving staff!
We stayed an extra night at the castle. Consequently, we breakfasted in the Black Night Restaurant. Unhappily, the service was extremely slow, and to our surprise we had to pay at the counter as we left. Is this usual in England (I’ve been living in the United States for the last thirty years)?

I have read that there are those who believe that the younger staff needs more training. I have to agree with this, but through observation, I also believe that the upper staff chooses to laud their power over the lower staff (I will not go into this right now). This posture instigates a lack of desire to please their manager. ‘Well if he/she doesn’t care then why should I’, attitude prevails. Everyone values being appreciated, EVERYONE! Managers, supervisors; be more appreciative of your staff. You will be surprised how quickly your staff will be more enthusiastic and want to please you and each patron.

A few days after the wedding, we discovered my husband’s passport missing. Frantic, we dropped by the castle to see if it was there. I had been to the castle a few times before for meetings regarding my wedding with the staff. Adam had shown me and my sister around, and then my husband to be. He was so accommodating. Adam the bellman, who had been so helpful and had assisted us to our room on our first day, found the bag holding my husband’s passport.

Thank you SO much Adam! Thank you June! Thank you to all of the staff. You made our wedding and our stay an occasion to remember forever!!!

Room Tip: Book a room in the turrets.
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  • Stayed: July 2014, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Rooms
    • Service
Thank lyrosesss
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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1,351 - 1,357 of 2,140 reviews

Reviewed 2 August 2014

Just like to say thank you to Nathan in reservations who helped me a lot with the booking and also treated us to a bottle of wine on arrival as it was my boyfriends birthday!

I originally booked a room in the courtyard however i then saw the trip advisor reviews about the feature rooms so i rang up and got us upgraded. We had room 59 (with the bathroom hidden behind the bookcase) -amazing! The only negative about the room was probably the lack of light however, this was only a problem when i was trying to put my make up on.

Check in was quick and easy however, staff didnt seem to bothered about there guests as they wernt really welcoming. Breakfast in the morning was a bit naff. We were talking to an old couple seated beside us and they were given incredibly hot plates and the old lady burnt her hand trying to sort out one of the waitresses mistakes. Once again, the staff during that shift werent really attentive or thoughtful.

When we checked out, the room service we had consumed the night before was still to pay however we paid in cash? After disputing this it got taken off. More staff were needed on reception that morning as there was a queue of people and the phones were going crazy. The thing that shocked me most is that mid-sentence the receptionist would leave the desk whilst helpig you and answer the phone to then have a conversation with someone on the phone! I found this quite rude.

I paid £169 for one night and i feel that i definitly didnt get my moneys worth. Im going to quote something i have previously seen on tripadviser about this hotel... Its a premier inn disguised as a castle.

  • Stayed: July 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Sleep Quality
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
1  Thank Amy M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 31 July 2014

My wife and I booked two nights at this hotel under a Groupon deal which included 2 nights bed and breakfast and an afternoon cream tea with Pimms. Our first impressions as we drove up the drive were wow, this place looks great, however we found the initial parking confusing, with no real clear signage showing us where to park but we then discovered that we were meant to drive into an enclosed courtyard where cars were dumped rather than parked.

In the far corner of this courtyard was signage directing us to the reception. There were 2 staff members behind reception hovering intently over a computer screen in a small side office, they seemed totally oblivious to our presence which i put down to us having arrived 1 hour before check-in, however we had driven a long way and wanted to know if there was a lounge or bar we could relax in until we could check-in. After about 5 minutes one staff member left with two other guests and the other staff member, dressed in some sort of period costume finally realised we were there and i explained our situation, she informed us that our room was ready and after the check-in procedures were completed directed us to our room ' its in the courtyard on the right'. Her manner wasn't rude or offensive but warm and welcoming it was not. We decided it must be because we were 'early'.

The first impression of our 'courtyard room' was dark and gloomy but once we accepted what was probably meant to be ambient mood lighting we grew to like it. a comfy bed, decent tv and shower room. we then decided to find the 'library bar' and have our cream tea etc. our opinion was it was alright (1 x cream scone, 1 x coffee, 1 x Pimms) but no way on earth would we have paid the advertised price of around £15-£16 each for it. The library bar itself lacks any atmosphere and despite venturing into it several times during our stay we wrote it off as a waste of money £16 for 2 large Vodka cokes. we hardly ever saw anyone else using it and despite rumours of another bar we never found any member of staff helpful or approachable enough to ask 'is this it'?

Breakfast was included in our deal, but again we wouldn't have liked to think we were paying for it, again overpriced in our opinion. the service was okay but nothing startling, on our first morning they 'forgot' about our cooked breakfast after we had ordered it and the only member of staff who seemed to know what was going on (Tony) realised and found us our breakfast before we started to get vocal.

We spent the majority of our stay 'out n about' using tripadvisor to find some lovely eating places for our evening meals as again the hotel menu is way overpriced. we used our room as a base only in the end and our stay didn't end up being the romantic couples break away we'd hoped for. We think this place is probably best suited to hosting large family gatherings, weddings etc when the guests bring their own 'atmosphere' and some life to the place, but if you're not part of the celebration it is dishwater dull, it needs a much brighter, livelier bar for guests to mingle and relax than the library bar, it needs to re-think it's pricing structure for meals and drinks and the staff need to lighten up a bit and converse with guests. they all seemed far too important and busy to bother themselves with talking to us.

  • Stayed: July 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Sleep Quality
    • Service
5  Thank Bugner D
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 30 July 2014

What a super castle. Pleasant lady welcomed us to the hotel and a very helpful porter say us to our bedroom and replaced our light bulb in the bathroom mirror. Very nice feature room but one night was enough as it is very dark and never saw the sun due to very heavy red curtains. Bath in centre of room was OK but the small door into the toilet was only for very thin people and the basin was for tiny people. Needed a new pull switch fabric pulls in bathrooms are not hygenic. Comfy bed but very high needed steps to get in it. Slept well. Dinner was OK. service was very slow lots of staff wandering about but after our meal it took 15 mins plus to clear plates. Was told they were full that evening when at least 6 tables never saw diners so dont know why we were told that. due to slow service we declined coffee. They could do with more varied veg. as 3 different potatoes and cabbage was not a very exciting choice. Breakfast was very average and spending £189 for one night would thought they would have had more fresh fruit. most hotels of any quality dont serve tinned fruit these days. Not value for money.

  • Stayed: July 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Rooms
    • Service
1  Thank alicelilly
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 30 July 2014

We stayed in Castle feature rooms and at £260 per night expected something special. What we got was a dark dingy room with a four poster bed, no other features. There is nothing that can be done about a lack of windows but surely the lighting can be improved. Our bathroom lighting was very yellow. The bathroom itself was old and tatty looking, like it had been refurbished in the early 1980’s and never touched since.

The Library bar was a nice room but it seemed to be a focal point for staff chats and you'd expect table service but apparently that would interrupt their conservation. They asked if we were eating with them, we said yes, then they left us without menus we had to get them ourselves after 10 minutes.

Service in the restaurant at dinner was fine and they do the starters and puddings well but the main courses weren't great.

Breakfast was very disappointing, as if they were trying to things as cheap as possible. Although there was a nice selection of fruit.

At checkout they had added dinner to our bill even though we had paid cash and hadn't signed to allow it be added to our bill so if you are staying with them do be careful at checkout.

It's a very nice setting, stunning building but it certainly doesn't live up to its tagline of 'no ordinary hotel'.

Stayed: July 2014, travelled as a couple
1  Thank Claire-Biggleswade
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 29 July 2014

A real mixture of a hotel /castle was the overall feeling after an overnight stay, Staff are friendly and helpful, but at times appear a little lost or as was found in the restaurant maybe they are all searching for the food to serve. Setting and views and the general ambience are what you would expect from a castle stay.

Room however was quirky in a not really pleasant way.Not really suitable for two unless you are a fan of Psycho as a shower curtain and no door in front of the shower and toilet behind, with a nightmare step down and poor lighting is not really four star standard. The windows in the room would not open which resulted in an overheated room during the hot spell- would be a bonus in Winter. Tip avoid room 57 as we understand other rooms were spacious and airy!

Food ,especially at breakfast was good standard- no complaints- but the delays in serving starters and main course in the restaurant left the impression that in mid week this hotel is overstretched for the staff available.

Overall could have been so much better.

Room Tip: Avoid room 57.............
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  • Stayed: July 2014, travelled on business
    • Value
    • Sleep Quality
    • Service
Thank SELEMA
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 29 July 2014

Booked a 70 th birthday celebration on one of their medieval theme nights back in April, paid deposits. Some of the group paid their bill in full. We have family coming from all over the country, trains, flights, driving, accommodation booked, then just over a week to go they cancel it all because another party cancelled. Over 20 people are very disappointed and left in the position of finding another birthday venue with very short notice. Not even an apology - shocking and rude customer service. To add insult to injury we are still waiting for the return of deposits and money paid.

  • Stayed: July 2014, travelled with family
    • Service
3  Thank Barbara B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Lumley Castle Hotel

Address: Chester-Le-Street, Durham DH3 4NX, England
Region: United Kingdom > England > Durham > Durham
Amenities:
Business Centre with Internet Access Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#2 Luxury Hotel in Durham
#5 Romantic Hotel in Durham
#5 Family Hotel in Durham
#7 Business Hotel in Durham
Price Range: £68 - £181 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4 star — Lumley Castle Hotel 4*
Number of rooms: 74
Reservation Options:
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Also Known As:
Lumley Castle Durham
Hotel Lumley Castle
Castle Hotel Lumley
Castle Lumley

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