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“Let down by restaurant staff in the evening”

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Congham Hall Hotel & Spa
Ranked #1 of 15 Hotels in King's Lynn
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed 2 November 2013 via mobile

We were looking forward to staying here after reading previous reviews but I'm afraid was left feeling very disappointed. Reception staff when we arrived could not have been any more helpful & staff everywhere seemed very friendly at first. Room was ok, it was one of the cheaper rooms in the main house and is starting to look a bit tired but was ok for one night. I have stayed in many 4 and 5 star hotels for this price that have been far superior and can't really understand how a 3 star hotel can justify the prices and the snobbery. We did decide to eat here but the service was shocking. We ordered a drink my husband asked for a pint of lager and the bar staff looked disgusted at him for asking such a thing! she just said its off i think so he had a bottle of lager but the snobbery attitude of the staff is unbelievable!!! you are only a 3 star hotel that charge 5 star prices!!! when we arrived and sat down & chose from the menus what we wanted for dinner, we decided not to have a starter as there just wasn't anything we liked, a rather stuck up waiter took our order several things on the menu were not available. When we were seated in the restaurant the very young girl asked us if we wanted wine I said yes could I see the wine list, she brought it to us on an ipad & left it on the table and NEVER came back to ask us what we wanted, the wines were well overpriced but we would have liked a bottle, we had our dinner served to us nobody asked then if we were ok for drinks as they were too busy sucking up to all the other tables, the food was ok but portions very small, as nobody during our meal asked if we were ok or needed anything we decided not to stay for a desert or a drink and just to go to our room after a very disappointing birthday meal!! Also no tea or coffee making facilities in the room, reading other reviews you have to ask for this! Why should you have to ask, surly this is a basic thing, I have never stayed anywhere that didn't provide this as standard. Breakfast was ok and the staff seemed a lot more experienced in the morning. Spa facilities were very good it's about the only thing we enjoyed.
Sorry just had to also mention we were on the 2nd floor and couldn't believe the fire door is wedged open by 2 doorstops, pretty sure this is an offence.

To sum up, my birthday treat I was so looking forward to was a massive let down & I will not be recommending this hotel! Shop around there are lots of beautiful 4 star hotels for less that make you feel a lot more comfortable.

  • Stayed: October 2013
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Thank Jathsa
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Julie W, General Manager at Congham Hall Hotel & Spa, responded to this reviewResponded 13 December 2013

Thank you for taking the trouble to report about your recent visit and I am sorry that your birthday treat was a “massive let down”. We greatly value all constructive feedback be that positive or negative although it is always disappointing to learn of occasions when we get it wrong, which judging by your comments we clearly did in your case. We genuinely do want all our guests to have a great time and wouldn’t dream of “sucking up” to some guests whilst at the same time ignoring others. We offer cask ale on tap and lager in bottles and have a very wide selection of wines both by the glass starting at £5.30 a glass (for a 175ml measure) and £22 a bottle. I am really sorry that you couldn’t find any starter on the menu that took your fancy – there are generally a choice of 8 to 10 different dishes as well as specials on some occasions that usually means there is something for everyone, although we are always happy to cater for particular dietary or special requests if we are told. Once again I am sorry that we didn’t live up to your expectations and especially that you erroneously gained the impression that we have a snobby, stuck up or unfriendly attitude. Nothing could be further from the truth.

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618 - 624 of 844 reviews

Reviewed 31 October 2013

We have just returned from a lovely few days at Congham Hall.
The room was very clean, with big fluffy towells and top notch linen, warm cosy corners in the lounges to sit in and enjoy a hot chocolate and play scrabble.
My boys had an early tea and then my wife and I thoroughly enjoyed our dinner in the restaurant with warm and unstuffy service from the staff.
The spa really was the highlight of the trip with a modern pool with loads of water jets, sauna and steam room...
We had a fab time as a family but also relaxing adult time just my wife and I.

  • Stayed: October 2013, travelled with family
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Thank TimBrocks
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Julie W, General Manager at Congham Hall Hotel & Spa, responded to this reviewResponded 13 December 2013

Thank you so much for taking the trouble to report about your recent stay, it makes such a difference to know that you enjoyed your visit and I greatly look forward to your next visit before too long.

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Reviewed 26 October 2013

The best part of our meal was the wine and that really says it all. On the rather naff ipad wine list were some good wines, but heavily marked up. The food was OK but not good. The scallop starter was mean with just two quite petite scallops; my main of bream was poor - it was overcooked and dry; the carrot cake sticky toffee pud lacked distinction and was supported by very unexciting ice cream when in Norfolk you can have stunning ice cream.

Add to this ordinariness the quality of the service and a 3* score looks generous. The service was poor. We were asked to come to the table 20 minutes before any food arrived, which is amateur; the staff did not know which dish my wife had ordered and stood rather doopish waiting for us to tell them where to put the plates; the pace of service was poor - long waits. Given the place was less than half full heaven help the guests when they are busy!

Finally prices are very steep. A glass of Pol Roger is £12 - this is too much for the customary small champagne glass; the scallop dish was not a £10 one; the wine mark up was too high. I know the price of quite a few of their wines at retail and trade prices.

It was a lovely evening out but we will not go again and would recommend quite a few places within 5-8 miles as much better. Enough! It was close to "poor".

Stayed: October 2013, travelled as a couple
Thank linskitours
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Julie W, General Manager at Congham Hall Hotel & Spa, responded to this reviewResponded 13 December 2013

Thank you for taking the trouble to report about your recent dinner and I am sorry that overall you considered your experience “close to poor”. We greatly value all constructive feedback be that positive or negative although it is always disappointing to learn of occasions when we get it wrong, which judging by your comments we clearly did in your case. Whilst your comments on the food and service are inconsistent with the Congham I know and I wish I had had the opportunity to address these at the time, I can however comment on your views regarding the wines. There has yet to be a single guest who does not have any opinion on the iPads although you are the first to describe them as “naff” and we try to offer assistance to those that would rather not get to grips with them. Contrary to the vast majority of establishments we have a policy of not applying a standard mark up across the board to our wines and the more expensive the wine the less will be the mark-up. We chose Pol Roger as our house champagne because it is not bog standard found everywhere and the “customary small champagne glass” you refer to holds a quarter of a bottle! For those that are looking for a cheaper alternative we have an excellent Italian sparkling wine for just £7.60 a glass. We do genuinely want all our guests to have a great time and once again I am sorry that we didn’t live up to your expectations, but hope that on reflection you might consider giving us another whirl?

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Reviewed 25 October 2013

A wonderful break in a very comfortable hotel, fabulous pool, sauna, steam room and hot tub, lovely garden and grounds and excellent food and service. The staff were friendly helpful and efficient. Our Norfolk terrier was most welcome. He was able to exercise in the gardens on a lead and in the orchard and surrounding meadows and cricket pitch off a lead. There are also several most attractive local walks and directions for these in the hotel. The menus were imaginative and the food was good. There were a number of nice touches, newspapers were complimentary, there were treats for the dog and the car windscreens were cleaned each morning. We'd love to come back in spring or summer when the gardens and patio could be better appreciated.

Room Tip: There are rooms in the main building and 6 or so 'outside' with their own patio set round a...
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  • Stayed: October 2013, travelled as a couple
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Thank James D
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Julie W, General Manager at Congham Hall Hotel & Spa, responded to this reviewResponded 13 December 2013

Thank you so much for taking the trouble to comment following your recent stay. The local walks are always popular as the well-thumbed directions we have on reception for our guests to borrow are testament to! I look forward to welcoming you back next year. The Garden rooms (11 in total) all have their own little terrace and provide the perfect place to relax in the sunshine.

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Reviewed 25 October 2013

We stayed with friends for one night on 23 Oct. The Ipad wine list is a complete disaster, drove me completely bonkers. Trying to compare all of the wines for description and price and having a nice browse impossible- bring back the written word. At breakfaxt a grilled kipper is offered, I particularly asked whether it was a "proper" kipper with all its bones, that would be grilled and was absolutely assured that this was so, so it was a great disappointment when a filleted "boil in a bag" one, looking very soggy and all filleted appeared.
Enough of the criticism. The staff, or all the ones we met, are local and as helpful and friendly as can be, so completely refreshing to see that we, as a Nation, can still do it!
Our bedroom, Betony, was exactly what we hoped for and perfect with lovely fluffy towels and as good an "over the bath" shower that you could ask for.
The food, whilst not michelin star as yet, was more than adequate and the grounds are lovely, All in all, whilst not cheap, as good an overnight watering hole as one could ask for and having all of the car's windows cleaned before we left, a really nice touch.

  • Stayed: October 2013, travelled with friends
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Thank Roland P
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Julie W, General Manager at Congham Hall Hotel & Spa, responded to this reviewResponded 13 December 2013

Thank you so much for taking the trouble to report about your recent stay, it makes such a difference to know that you enjoyed your visit and I am especially pleased that you found all the staff both friendly and helpful. We are very proud of the fact that the majority are local. The iPad’s are most definitely a talking point and I have yet to meet a guest who has no opinion about them. We have found them to be so much more flexible than a traditional printed list as well as providing more detail on the wines to be available for those that want to delve in deeply. I hope you will pay us another visit soon.

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Reviewed 23 October 2013

My wife and i stayed at Congham Hall at the same time as Stephen S and our experience and impressions were very different. Although we did not have a suite, just a Best House Bedroom everything was just as it should be in a luxury country house hotel. A well appointed bedroom and bathroom, excellent linen and towels. And the service throughout the hotel, front desk, bar, housekeeping was cheerful and efficient. It was good to find that the staff were local people. The new dining room was lovely and the food five star - hats off to the chef. I didn't like the wine list being on a tablet but the choice was wide. We had stayed at Congham Hall twenty years ago. It is even better now. Good luck to the new owner. We will be back.

Room Tip: Our room was called Echinacea - you won't go wrong if you ask to have that for your stay
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  • Stayed: October 2013, travelled as a couple
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Thank 73manor
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Julie W, General Manager at Congham Hall Hotel & Spa, responded to this reviewResponded 13 December 2013

Thank you so much for taking the trouble to report about your recent stay, it makes such a difference to know that you enjoyed your visit and especially that you found the food to be five star. I’m glad you like the dining room too! The iPad’s are most definitely a talking point and I have yet to meet a guest who has no opinion about them. We have found them to be so much more flexible than a traditional printed list as well as providing more detail on the wines to be available for those that want to delve in deeply. I look forward to your next visit before too long

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Reviewed 22 October 2013

We stayed at Congham Hall 19th Oct. I booked the best suite - Dandelion, the bedroom and lounge are nice but the bathroom is poor , for £270 per night I would expect a roll top bath and a large shower, instead there us an ordinary plastic bath and tiny shower cubicle with an electric shower, if this was priced at around £160 it would be acceptable . The bar and lounges are nice but the restaurant has no atmosphere, however the food was good. Nice place but over priced.

  • Stayed: October 2013
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Thank Stephen S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Julie W, General Manager at Congham Hall Hotel & Spa, responded to this reviewResponded 12 December 2013

Thank you so much for taking the trouble to comment following your recent stay with us. It was good to know that you felt we had a “nice place” although disappointing to read that you consider the restaurant had no atmosphere. That probably used to be the case, but we are delighted with the result of our refurbishment that was completed in the spring and have been particularly pleased with the feedback generally, especially regarding the restaurant and bar. Maybe we can tempt you to come back and maybe try one of our Garden rooms that are also extremely popular?

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Additional Information about Congham Hall Hotel & Spa

Address: Lynn Road, King's Lynn PE32 1AH, England
Region: United Kingdom > England > East Anglia > Norfolk > King's Lynn
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free Breakfast Free Parking Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#1 Romantic Hotel in King's Lynn
#2 Business Hotel in King's Lynn
#2 Family Hotel in King's Lynn
Price Range: £134 - £290 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:3 star — Congham Hall Hotel & Spa 3*
Number of rooms: 26
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Nestled within the beautiful Norfolk countryside, Congham Hall is a privately owned Georgian manor house situated 20 minutes' drive from the sandy beaches of the North Norfolk coast. A variety of market towns, nature reserves and the Queen's Sandringham Estate are also within a short drive. Each individually designed bedroom is very spacious offering extremely comfortable king sized beds and picturesque views across the estate. The team of award winning chefs create dishes using a wide variety of vegetables and herbs from the estate served in the Orangery restaurant overlooking manicured lawns and glorious parkland. For something a little more informal, indulgent afternoon teas are served in the lounge next to the cosy log fire. Set within 30 acres of wonderful parkland and extensive gardens, Congham Hall also boasts a croquet lawn and tennis courts. Congham Hall's luxurious Secret Garden Spa is where you'll find a stunning 12 metre pool, sauna, steam room, bio-sauna as well as an outside hot tub. You may also choose to unwind with one of the relaxing and rejuvenating beauty and massage treatments which will restore body and mind and leave you feeling completely revived. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Congham Hall Country Hotel
Hotel Congham Hall Country
Congham Hall Hotel & Spa UK/Norfolk

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