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“The (in)Compleat Angler”

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Macdonald Compleat Angler
Ranked #2 of 4 Hotels in Marlow
GreenLeadersSilver level
Reviewed 24 April 2014

The location of the hotel and restaurant is arguably the best on the river - a view of Marlow bridge to the left, the parish church dead ahead and the wonderful waters of the weir stretching to the right. However, as far as a diner is concerned that is the only thing that is right about the experience. It is sad that after visiting the hotel for different occasions for 40 years under a variety of managements and chefs, we have still never had a good meal. After forty years it is time to give up the effort.

Arriving slightly early for a lunch booking we were asked whether we would like a drink in the bar first which we initially elected to do. However, the bar is gloomy in daylight and does not afford a real view of the river. Also the majority of tables were dirty and filled with coffee cups and glasses which looked as if the were still there from the night before. Therefore we went to the table for a pre-prandial glass of champagne - expensive at £15 a glass, more than London 5* prices.

The set lunch appeared to be value but sadly the quality of the cooking and ingredients did not match even this low price. Service was poor, slow. The staff need to be better drilled and dressed. Spilled wine on the bare and dirty table was not cleaned up. The set lunch fort two with two glasses of champagne and one of the cheaper bottles of Bordeaux was around £150. There are much better offers, at lower prices and higher quality in the region.

Isaac Walton would be embrarssed at what is being done in his name!

  • Stayed: April 2014, travelled as a couple
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2  Thank Woollybear
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
GWyncoll, General Manager at Macdonald Compleat Angler, responded to this reviewResponded 25 May 2014

I am sorry that you did not enjoy your meal in our newly refurbished riverside restaurant. You have been kind enough to keep coming back and I am surprised that you have never been happy with the meal. Unfortunately, there are not specific comments regarding the dishes for me to comment further. I would hope that a three course lunch at £25 per person offers very good value. Our wine prices start from £24.50 and we do offer Prosecco @ £6.95 as a cheaper alternative to a glass of Champagne @ £13.50. Clearly, I am sorry that you found the service to be too slow and that staff could have been better drilled and dressed. This is by no means reflective of our normal standards and I would like to assure you that your comments have been discussed with my Restaurant Manager and in turn his team. I do hope that you will give the restaurant another try in the future and I would be happy to make the booking for you should you wish to contact me directly.

Kind regards

Gaius Wyncoll
General Manager

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1,654 - 1,660 of 2,179 reviews

Reviewed 23 April 2014

We were booked for dinner at Tom Kerridge's Hand & Flowers 2 Michelin starred pub (less than 15 min walk from hotel) and as the Premier Inn was full (which is just around the corner) we opted for this hotel for convenience of location. At £199 for the room it was not cheap and did not include breakfast but the position on the river is lovely and you can walk into lovely Marlow town centre in just a few moments. We did not eat in the hotel but the afternoon tea people were enjoying looked good. Plus, when the weather is warmer the terrace is lovely. The bar staff were friendly but not proactive enough and seemed a little disinterested and that is one side we found disappointing. I heard that the Weir on the river was loud but we did not find this a problem even though we had a lovely river view. The room was really nice - we were in the main part of the hotel. We had a very restful night's sleep but I can imagine it might be a little loud in the summer if a wedding takes over. Would definitely stay again but would wait for a deal.

Room Tip: We stayed in room 12 in the main part of the hotel which offers a lovely view (see my photo) of the...
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  • Stayed: April 2014, travelled as a couple
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2  Thank Rob Y
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
GWyncoll, General Manager at Macdonald Compleat Angler, responded to this reviewResponded 25 May 2014

Thank you for your feedback. I hope that you had a good meal at the Hand and Flowers – you did well to get a booking! Thank you for booking for us. I am pleased that you enjoyed your stay and the proximity to Marlow just across the bridge. Regarding deals, the least expensive day would be a Sunday and then quieter times of the year such as January and February and mid week during the school holidays. Tuesday, Wednesday and Saturdays are peak. I hope that we can welcome you back again and you have the opportunity to dine in our own award winning restaurant.

Kind regards

Gaius Wyncoll
General Manager

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Reviewed 18 April 2014

The Compleat Angler is a lovely hotel in a beautiful location sat on the banks of the Thames. The rooms are of a high standard and the location is ideal, with on site parking and a 5 minute walk into the centre of Marlow. Prices reflect the quality of the establishment and the location and as a treat, I would highly recommend. I hope to return on a personal visit rather than business.

Room Tip: Some rooms are a walk across the carpark from an access perspective, so if you are a lone female tra...
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  • Stayed: April 2014, travelled on business
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Thank Catherine M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
GWyncoll, General Manager at Macdonald Compleat Angler, responded to this reviewResponded 25 May 2014

It is kind of you to take the time to write a review on Trip Advisor. I am pleased to hear how you enjoyed the beautiful location and the hotel. In particular, it is good to hear that the price matches the quality, which is important. I hope we can welcome you back for a personal visit soon.

Kind regards

Gaius Wyncoll
General Manager

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Reviewed 14 April 2014

We had the most wonderful weekend in Marlow ataying at the Complete Angler - everything was perfect. The room was fabulous - very spacious with a balcony looking over the weir - and immaculate. We had dinner both nights and the menu was superd - the food and service could not have been better. On Saturday night there was a brilliant piano player who played all of our request! Marlow is a beautiful part of the Country and we will definitely return to the Angler as this made the weekend very special.

Room Tip: We would definitely ask for a room with a balcony as not all rooms have these.
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  • Stayed: April 2014, travelled as a couple
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Thank ah3006
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
GWyncoll, General Manager at Macdonald Compleat Angler, responded to this reviewResponded 25 May 2014

Thank you for staying with is and on one of our Feature rooms, which are more spacious and have the benefit of a balcony overlooking the weir. I can see that you dined on two nights and enjoyed the food and the service, as well as the pianist who plays every Friday and Saturday evenings. Marlow is stunning and you don’t even need to drive the car to enjoys a few days in the area – just take a stroll beside the river or a boat trip on the river. Of course, there are the rolling Chilterns where Midsummer Murders and Vicar of Dibley was filmed and nearby Henley and Windsor. I look forward to welcoming you back again.

Kind regards

Gaius Wyncoll
General Manager

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Reviewed 10 April 2014

We have stayed here previously and chose it for our 20th wedding anniversary.
Fabulous location by the river with lovely views from our room, which we did find a bit smaller than expected and with a very cramped bathroom. The hotel boasts of a major refurbishment just finished, but not in our room. Basically clean but a bit dusty where it is not so noticeable, and the bath panel was very shabby and scuffed. Not 4 star standard.
Service was excellent, a friendly welcome and attentive staff wherever you are in the hotel.
We enjoyed pre dinner drinks with a generous selection of nibbles and then into dinner.
The food when we last came was exceptional but I think the chef at that time has long since moved on. Our starter was crab ravioli in langoustine bisque with a langoustine tail at £13.
The ravioli was on the hard side of al dente, the bisque was a shallow puddle at the bottom of the bowl, and the langoustine tail looked like a small prawn about the size we give our cat as a treat. Very disappointing. The rest of the meal was satisfactory, but at getting on for £100 for two we felt it was very overpriced. However, we enjoyed an excellent bottle of wine with it at a reasonable price.
There is a dress code of smart casual, but halfway through our meal a couple came to the next table, the young lady wearing jeans and a hoodie!
Breakfast was very good, but a slight lapse in that the waiter started removing plates before we had both finished eating, my wife's pet hate.
The tables in the bar had bowls of daffodils on them, but these had dried out and wilted, and the flowers on the tables in the restaurant were also dead. I have reflected this in cleanliness as this is a housekeeping issue which lets down the ambience of the bar and restaurant.
The tone of this review sounds critical, but it was a very pleasant stay. The overall effect was marred by a lack of attention to details such as I have mentioned and which at these prices and in a 4 star hotel should not occur. Hopefully this is constructive criticism which the hotel could take on board to raise the standards to the level they try to achieve.

Room Tip: Pay the extra to upgrade to a room overlooking the river. The great selling point of this hotel is i...
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  • Stayed: April 2014, travelled as a couple
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Thank PnJStanmoreLondon
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
GWyncoll, General Manager at Macdonald Compleat Angler, responded to this reviewResponded 25 May 2014

Thank you for your detailed review following your stay. Your comments are welcomed and constructive. I am pleased that you did enjoy your stay and found excellent service, friendly and welcoming. However, equally, there were aspects that marred your stay for which I am sorry.

The £500k refurbishment covered the meeting rooms, restaurant, bar and reception. We have an ongoing programme of maintenance, which covers the bedrooms and there is a phase of full refurbishment of 10 bedrooms for later this year. You may have been staying in one of these, however, I cannot tell from the review. Clearly, this is no excuse for the peeling and scuffed paint on the bath panel or the dust in less obvious places. I have shared this with my Housekeeping Manager for review.

The comment regarding the ravioli dish, the clearing of plates at breakfast and the plants in the bar have equally be shared with my team in order that we can consistently aim to improve as well as maintain standards consistently. I sincerely do hope that we can welcome you back again and that you have a seamless experience.

Kind regards

Gaius Wyncoll
General Manager

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Reviewed 7 April 2014

Beautiful hotel on the Thames. We were upgraded to celebrate our engagement which was a really nice touch. Unfortunately on the morning of our stay there was an issue with the toilet in our bathroom as it was filling up and not draining - it was when there was a lot of rain so perhaps an issue with the old plumbing system - it meant we had to use the public toilet downstairs instead of our room. We did tell the receptionist and also emailed after our visit but sadly didn't get a response. I would recommend the hotel though as it's such a nice location.

  • Stayed: December 2013, travelled as a couple
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Thank Catkirk4904
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
GWyncoll, General Manager at Macdonald Compleat Angler, responded to this reviewResponded 25 May 2014

Thank you for your review. I am glad that you would recommend the hotel following your stay with us. I do hope that we can welcome you back personally. Clearly, I am sorry that we did not rectify the issue with your toilet during your stay and we did not acknowledge this either, which is most disappointing. Although late at this stage, I sincerely apologise for the inconvenience.

Kind regards

Gaius Wyncoll
General Manager

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Reviewed 6 April 2014 via mobile

We stayed for one night at the Compleat Angler and what a wonderful stay it was. The room was beautiful with views across the river Thames and Marlow bridge. The room was spotless with everything you could need. The thickest towels I have ever seen and robes to match. Breakfast was made to order and really good quality food too. Ok so it's not the cheapest hotel but in this instance you get what you pay for. We will be returning!! Thank you.

Stayed: April 2014, travelled as a couple
Thank KTC1977
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
GWyncoll, General Manager at Macdonald Compleat Angler, responded to this reviewResponded 25 May 2014

It is great to read that you will be returning following you recent stay. I am pleased that you have a wonderful stay. It is elements such as the best towels and bathrobes and the quality of the food in addition to the service that all make the difference. We don’t aim to be the cheapest hotel, however, we do aim to offer quality and value for money.
I look forward to welcoming you back.

Kind regards

Gaius Wyncoll
General Manager

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Macdonald Compleat Angler

Address: Marlow Bridge, Marlow SL7 1RG, England
Region: United Kingdom > England > Buckinghamshire > Marlow
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Suites Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
Ranked #2 of 4 Hotels in Marlow
Price Range: £128 - £1,151 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4 star — Macdonald Compleat Angler 4*
Number of rooms: 64
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Named after Izaak Walton's famous book on angling, the beautiful four-red star Macdonald Compleat Angler is idyllically located on the banks of the River Thames. The hotel is just a short walk from the Georgian town of Marlow, 10 minutes drive from the M4 and just over an hour away from Central London by train. Beautiful both inside and out, enjoy mouthwatering meals from the recently refurbished, three AA rosette-awarded Riverside Restaurant overlooking Marlow Weir or delicious afternoon tea on the terrace. Alternatively, dine in Sindhu by Michelin-starred Indian Chef, Atul Kochhar. For meetings, strategy days or conferences, our meeting facilities are ideal and our 2 brand new SMART board technology board rooms perfect for inspiring great ideas. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Macdonald Compleat Angler Marlow
Macdonald Compleat Angler Hotel Marlow

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