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“Post-luxury cash-cow”
Review of The Royal Oak Inn

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The Royal Oak Inn
Ranked #2 of 4 East Lavant B&B and Inns
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed 23 September 2013

This is a lovely place that is not being well-managed. We had a happy weekend here, great facilities, good food and ideal location.

But it clearly isn't the place it once was. Tired furnishings, leaking shower with cracked ceiling, dirty carpet together with the cobwebs in corners and occasionally dirty crockery give the impression that they are not on top of their game. It isn't filthy, but it certainly isn't the luxury they promise.

The cleaning staff are friendly. The kitchen staff who sit around outside your cottage are dour, having a fag and peering at their mobiles. The waitresses are pretty (but know it). The village peaceful. It's a great place to come but make sure you don't pay their asking price if you have an eye for a fair deal or you'll feel ripped off. I didn't.

Room Tip: Room 3 is a cottage out the back and is pleasant enough but very tired decor for the prices they wan...
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  • Stayed: September 2013, travelled with family
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5  Thank Harrodsfree
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
royalsarah, Owner at The Royal Oak Inn, responded to this reviewResponded 25 September 2013

Dear Harrodsfree - thanks for your comments - after an extremely busy summer we are undertaking a process of refurbishment - so perhaps you'll be back to try out the new bathrooms and fittings! Keep an eye on our website for the new photos!!

It really would have helped us if you had mentioned the ceiling above the shower whilst you were staying with us as it turns our there was a broken pipe which caused the plaster to crack. Not something we could attend to whilst you were in occupation and we were full!

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Reviews (204)
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144 - 150 of 204 reviews

Reviewed 4 September 2013

A very pretty pub in a beautiful surrounding of cottages and countryside. At the rear of the pub is a very vast field which was impressive and the inn has nice outside terrace areas. It's very easy to get to areas of chichester by car including the town centre, west wittering beach and other pretty villages.

First impression of the room was lovely and had lots facilities - a fridge, tea/coffee/hot chocolate, TV and ipod docking station, lots of towels, soaps, shampoo etc which was a pleasant surprise.
However upon looking closer throughout our stay it was noticed that the cups and saucers had tea drops/stains on them from being previously used and not washed properly. There were quite a few insects (spiders which i'm petrified of) hiding in the corners of the ceilings which should have been cleaned. The toilet took a good 20mins to refill so if either of us used the toilet the other couldnt flush it for all that time afterwards. On our second day we had left our used towels on the floor to be changed over (as advised by a sign in the bathroom), when we returned to the room after it was 'cleaned' we discovered the same dirty towels had been rehung and folded to hide the dirty make up makes from the day before. When we complained about this it was indeed resolved very quickly and we were kindly offered a drink on the house however would have preferred this to have not happened in the first place.

The food was very good, we had lunch, dinner and breakfast there. A little pricey but we didnt mind because it was tastey. We found the staff could have been slightly friendlier and sometimes felt a bit awkward to ask for anything extra, especially during our dinner.

Overall it was a very enjoyable stay and i would recommend it however am not entirely sure if i'd return.

Room Tip: If you like sleeping with the window open then dont stay in room 4 as there is a water fountain outs...
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  • Stayed: August 2013, travelled with family
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2  Thank Daisydumplings
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 26 August 2013

We had a very nice time during our stay at The Royal Oak in East Lavant. A great location if you're looking for a nice little hide away to escape to for the weekend. My husband, 2 year old daughter and I stayed in one of the rooms in the converted barn. Although compact it was perfectly fine for us. The room was well catered for, fridge well stocked including a few decent bottles of wine too! Which we eyed up but having a toddler makes for early morning starts so we thought better of it. However we did splash out on a tasty lunch with friends. Pork burger washed down with westons cider followed by peach tartin. We also had a family dinner (the owner/manager was very hospitable and looked after our every need including making our table for dinner available early so we could eat with our daughter and he found colouring pencils and paper to keep her occupied too!). Overall a lovely indulgent weekend in the country. And ignore earlier reviews about corkage issues etc. the owner was very clear this only applies to those patrons who wish to open bottles of wine brought in from external sources, so if you have a rather large private cellar and bottles worth several hundred quid, I'm sure you can afford a £20 corkage fee no problem! Staff are young and eager to please but still learning the ropes. The waiting service is just something that will improve over time. Enjoy your stay and stop sweating the small stuff!

Room Tip: It's a small outfit with a couple of rooms and a couple of cottages so book well in advance as i...
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  • Stayed: August 2013, travelled with family
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Thank LoobyLou1000
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 26 August 2013

Had dinner here last week. Pretty country pub with cosy interior and pleasant, attentive staff. The food was good on the whole - my husband's scallop starter and pork main were excellent; my whitebait was good and the confit of Gressingham duck was also good although a tad dry for my taste. Can't really comment on the dessert menu as we only had local ice cream, being too full to attempt anything more substantial!

I do have a few quibbles though. Firstly the service - a bit too quick for our liking. It is nice to be served speedily but I feel that most couples on a night out would prefer to have a little more time between courses than we were given - being given the main course 5 minutes after finishing the starter was a little too rapid for us, making us feel a bit rushed. Also, some of the tables for two are far too close to the larger tables. We had to move our table a few inches to the right when the couple at the next table arrived so that they could actually pull their chairs out far enough to be able to sit down - fortunately the table to our right was unoccupied otherwise we would have felt somewhat hemmed in! Some kind of insect screen over the open door would also be a good idea - great to have the fresh air on a warm summer night, but it would be better minus the flies.

All in all though a good, although not inexpensive, place to eat to which I would be happy to return.

Stayed: August 2013, travelled as a couple
1  Thank GiantpandaKirchberg
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 5 June 2013

We spent a couple of days here, so we could go to the theatre at Chichester and it was just lovely. A small room, beautifully presented, with an excellent bathroom and powerful shower. My Husband has walking problems and they couldn't have been kinder or more helpful, even though they were very busy. We had two excellent meals, both very generous and with lots of local produce. But it is expensive - the room was very overpriced, but then the area generally is expensive. Breakfasts were very good and thoughtfully prepared. Much more suited to a summer stay rather than during poor weather, as you have to walk outside to reach room and there is a hazardous slope from the road. Fortunately, there was help available to carry bags etc., Very pretty garden and a wonderful field at the rear with a peaceful bench. All in all a very happy stay at this high quality pub / inn.

Room Tip: Rooms are smallish and access is not easy. Space is at a premium, so masses of luggage is a mistake...
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  • Stayed: May 2013, travelled as a couple
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Thank tiskerman
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 3 June 2013

This is one of many meals I have eaten at the Royal Oak, I have been here with friends, family, business colleagues and sometimes even on my own - every time has been a good time. I was a little surprised to see some reviews suggesting that things had slipped as I can honestly say that I have never had a bad experience here.

I love the setting and the menu which is seasonal, I know they source produce locally and I like the fact that food quality seems to be important to them. I had a superb best end of lamb on Saturday night which I washed away with a superb pint of ale.

If I had to criticise any area of my experience, I would suggest opening the doors and fitting fly screens in the new dining room to get the air moving as it was just a triffle stiffling, but by no means worthy of a complaint!

  • Stayed: June 2013, travelled with family
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Thank Daniel R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 18 May 2013

Welcome was amazing Charles couldn't have been more helpful, our knight in shining armour! Food and service was exquisite
Mulberry cottage was beautiful, will definitely return may even bring husband, just so he can pay!!!!!
Thank you so much.

Stayed: May 2013, travelled with friends
Thank Maria P
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about The Royal Oak Inn

Address: The Royal Oak Pook Lane, East Lavant, Chichester PO18 0AX, England
Phone Number:
Region: United Kingdom > England > West Sussex > Chichester > East Lavant
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Kitchenette Restaurant Suites
Hotel Style:
Ranked #2 of 4 B&Bs / Inns in East Lavant
Price Range: £106 - £177 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Number of rooms: 8
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The Royal Oak Inn is a thriving and stylish Gastropub with rooms. Money has been lavished on the beds with a contemporary feel and great attention to detail, big comfy beds, leather chairs, magazines and luxurious bathrooms, plasma screen TVs and ipod docks/CD/DVD players. All rooms have free Wi-fi. Two smart 2 bedroom cottages can accommodate longer lets and are suitable for families. Goodwood, Chichester and the seaside are all close by together with West Dean, Parham House, Petworth and Uppark. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
The Royal Oak Hotel Chichester

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