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“Old-fashioned, disappointing, below average in every way”

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Bourne Hall Country Hotel
Ranked #21 of 54 Hotels in Shanklin
Canterbury, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
67 reviews
27 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 90 helpful votes
“Old-fashioned, disappointing, below average in every way”
2 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 18 September 2012

We paid £99 for what the Receptionist thought was Dinner Bed and Breakfast, and told us that we had been reimbursed £30 for dinner - all booked through Booking.com. However, when we queried this, because we had booked through Booking.com, it turned out we had paid over the odds purely for B&B. This was a phenomenal fee for staying in such an old-fashioned hotel.

I had booked what I thought was a Spa Hotel. The "Spa" consisted of a non-working steam room (large steam shower cubicle) and a 'dry' sauna which just about sat three. The pool was so deep at 5' in the shallow end and very narrow. The changing area wasn't up to par, there were no products at the small open shower cubicle opening onto the pool, and it was really rather a repellant place to spend time.

There was no sound-proofing, it was as though we had other guests talking loudly in our room, so this woke us at night. The bathroom taps affected the shower instantly, and there was one of those dreadful non-slip mats (very old-fashioned nowadays) with rather sad-looking sachets for hair/shower purposes. It was all so yesterday...stepping back thirty years.

Breakfast was OK, but I've had bigger pieces of haddock, though it was nice to have this option. The service wasn't exceptional nor friendly. Grapefruit and prunes did not appear until after my cooked breakfast, it had been muesli before, which was disappointing.

The Isle of Wight generally seems like stepping back thirty years, and this hotel hasn't updated noticeably from what was being offered around that time. Describing itself as having a spa is overstepping the mark, so I would never recommend this as it was a huge amount to pay for so very little!

  • Stayed September 2012, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
3 Thank Gastronome20
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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235 reviews from our community

Traveller rating
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    6
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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (59)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • Any
English first
Huntingdon, United Kingdom
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 16 September 2012

Stayed at this hotel on a mid week special break Monday to Friday in a superior room on half board. The hotel was excellent along with the facilities. Everyone was so friendly and welcoming. The room was exquisite and the food was out of this world. This is not a roudy beach front hotel but a quiet retreat in walking distance of the beach. we will decently be going back.

  • Stayed September 2012
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Mark F
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Kingston upon Thames, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
7 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
2 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 10 September 2012

Good things first: the staff were friendly and helpful and the cooked breakfast was ok (though I’ve had better); the bedroom and the bathroom were clean and the bed mattress was comfortable (and I have an expensive one at home to compare it with, so I think that’s objective).

However... the bedroom (no. 26) was small and dated, and there was no view of the sea; I knew about that before I arrived but even if there had been the small windows would have rendered it a bit irrelevant. The bed itself wasn’t kingsize either - do hotels like Bourne Hall really think that in this day and age it’s acceptable to charge more for a kingsize bed? The budget chain Premier Inn doesn’t! It also had sheets and blankets instead of a duvet (which admittedly some people might prefer) and the TV was one of the smallest I’ve ever seen in a hotel. The bathroom was at best functional; white tiles, no colour or embellishment. The rest of the hotel (I didn’t use any of the facilities so can’t comment on them) was equally dated and a bit shabby and in no sense could any aspect of what I saw be referred to as ‘luxury’.

In summary, the best that can be said is that the room was a clean, comfortable enough place to sleep. Which might have been fine except that the room cost £150 a night (7th and 8th September weekend) which was vastly, insultingly overpriced; when I walked into the room my heart sank – not what one wants after a long journey full of anticipation, and I felt a bit embarrassed in front of my girlfriend – I’d booked this to celebrate our 2nd anniversary. The website conveys a much more positive impression of the hotel than the reality – I should have realised that when the picture of the kind of room I had booked only showed the bedhead. I stay in hotels a lot, and for £150 a night I would expect far, far more; I’d say £75 a night would have been fairer value for money, but if the hotel were to be featured in the TV series ‘Four in a bed’, I suspect they’d struggle to get even that.

So, I feel really ripped off and find it amazing that they’re still in business; £150 a night is as far away from being fair value as it’s possible to be. I suspect they know this and probably wonder how they get away with charging so much themselves – maybe their clientele rarely stays anywhere else and has no point of comparison. So, 1 star for value, and 3 for the experience – a fair average of 2 stars. If you want to arrive somewhere and enjoy your stay without the huge disappointment of feeling that you’ve been made a monkey of, steer clear of Bourne Hall.

NJF

  • Stayed September 2012, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank Neil F
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Ashford, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
27 reviews
8 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 6 September 2012

We went to Bourne Hall for a four day break last week. It was lovely. We had a premier room which had a king size fourposter bed. Very comfortable with a good mattress. I am not always able to sleep in hotel beds as they often have worn and saggy mattresses but this was lovely. The restaurant was very nice although not many people there. The food was absolutely wonderful. Plentiful and hot, the dinners were first rate and we enjoyed eating there every night. The staff are a credit to the hotel and in every case were helpful and obliging. We had a swim in the indoor pool - not brave enough the try the outside as it was very cold - and it was pleasantly warm although a bit dim inside. The purple drapes could do with being taken away and letting some more light in. The gardens are a bit steep in places but the view over Shanklin and Sandown to the cliffs beyond is lovely. Overall we had a great time. Would recommend the hotel and will cetainly go back. As with a lot of well used hotel rooms you could pick areas which could do with a lick of paint etc., but overall this place is fab.

Room Tip: We had a premier room at the front of the house which has the sea views. The rooms at the back are o...
See more room tips
  • Stayed August 2012, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Wendy G
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Worcester, United Kingdom
2 reviews
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 28 August 2012

Interesting start as booking hotel via bookings.com was £20 cheaper than booking direct with hotel. Hotel is sitauted in quiet part of Shanklin with village of Old Shanklin a few minutes walk away. Hotel is clean and tidy and customer service was good. Breakfast was excellent with freshly cook "full english". Premier bedroom was roomy and spotless clean with very comfortable 4 poster bed - only downsize was size of TV for such size of room. Only real negative was it is trying to be something it isn't - should be more boutique than trying to pretend with heraldic symbolism!!

  • Stayed August 2012, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank JemPorteous
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Eastbourne, England, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
9 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 25 August 2012

We had a wonderful stay here for our 25th wedding anniversary. The staff were extremely helpful, the food was fantastic, the rooms were elegant and the Osborne suite was fabulous for celebrating a special occasion.We couldn't fault a thing. We ate in the restaurant and found the background music perfect, plenty of other couples and families also dining and the food served was first class. the service was exceptional. We didn't have time to try out the pampering and spa facilities but I would have thought they also would be very good. The hotel is up a fairly steep hill but that gave the fabulous views which I would recommend seeing. One of our best holidays ever.

  • Stayed August 2012, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank fionalewis3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Oxfordshire
Level Contributor
17 reviews
12 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 25 August 2012

We stayed at the hotel for a week. My wife and I had a premiere room and our teenage son a standard room. As others have said some of the bedroom furniture is a bit tired, but everything worked and the corner bath and shower were a joy. Breakfast was great, other than the chef forgetting fried bread twice, but that was put right immediately. Every member of staff we met were both helpful and friendly, given that, in my opinion the hotel is slightly understaffed. Ordering a drink before dinner was an exercise in patience, as the restuarant staff also had to man the bar, which was not that close to the restuarant. The outdoor pool and leisure facilities were fine, but the tiles sourounding the pool need re-grouting and weeding. We stayed there for a quiet break, which is exactly what we had, but the hotel offers a "mini cinema" and games room in the basement. We went down there once to investigate, but all the lights were off, so it was a bit spooky. The games room was extremely tired, so I would suggest closing it and concentrate on what you do best, which is looking after your guests. So to summarise, this hotel is good but not great. It could be great with a few minor changes, and just one more member of staff please to look after the bar and weed the pool area. Also, it is a minor point, but our room was not vacuumed every day, which it really needed.

Room Tip: Ask for a room with a sea view. Room 6 is great for this.
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  • Stayed August 2012, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank DavidandSheila
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Bourne Hall Country Hotel

Property: Bourne Hall Country Hotel
Address: 11 Luccombe Road, Shanklin PO37 6RR, England
Region: United Kingdom > England > Isle of Wight > Shanklin
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #21 of 54 Hotels in Shanklin
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): £
Hotel Class:3 star — Bourne Hall Country Hotel 3*
Number of rooms: 30
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Bourne Hall, an elegant Country House, Hotel and restaurant, set in mature grounds in Shanklin, Isle of Wight. Originally built in the late 1860’s, said to be for one of Queen Victoria’s ladies in waiting, the "house" still retains its sense of history whilst providing comfortable accommodation enhanced by its original Victorian features. Uniquely located on an elevated position at the foot of Luccombe Downs, benefits both countryside and coastal Vistas. The Hotel enjoys exquisite views, by day and night, across Sandown and Shanklin Bay, and onwards to Culver Downs. Situated minutes walk south of Shanklin "old village," this 30 bedroom, 3 star hotel offers a range of classic and premier rooms, family rooms and suites, comprehensive leisure & health facilities, and a stylish restaurant. Bourne Hall provides the ideal setting for weekend special breaks or longer stays, private functions, weddings and business meetings/conferences. We take pride in our friendliness and attention to detail and always endeavour to make your experience comfortable and most enjoyable. We look forward to welcoming you to the hotel in the near future. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Bourne Hall Country Hotel And Restaurant
Bourne Hall Country Shanklin
Bourne Hall Country Hotel Shanklin, Isle Of Wight

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