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“Run down”

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Grace White Barn Inn and Spa
Ranked #3 of 8 Hotels in Kennebunk
Certificate of Excellence
Armonk, New York
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
“Run down”
Reviewed 24 July 2014

The location of this hotel could not be better - we walked to both the beach and into the town of Kennebunkport which were amazing. The hotel itself is expensive and seems to enjoy its Relais and Chateau status, but having stayed at 2 other R & C properties this summer, this one does not compare. The room was run down and although not dirty, it was not particularly clean. I realize that old inns have a certain "old charm," but this one just felt dated and in desperate need of a renovation. Continental breakfast was included in our room rate, and we found it to be heavy, with extremely limited choices. We did not eat in the restaurant which I know is a big draw for the hotel b/c my husband had not brought a jacket (for the beach in July) which was required (we were not informed of this in advance). In all, it was not worth it and we will not return.

  • Stayed July 2014, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
4 Thank Nicole S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
WBIInnkeeper, General Manager at Grace White Barn Inn and Spa, responded to this review, 25 July 2014
Dear Nicole S,

We are most grateful for your kind comments about our location. We are, however, very sorry that you did not enjoy the White Barn Inn and that we failed to me your expectations.

The hotel offers a number of different room decors and configurations; and I would encourage you, please, to contact me in future so that I may assist with helping you find the most modern and contemporary accommodation.

Our continental breakfast offers a wide variety of freshly baked pastries and breads, freshly cut fruit, homemade granola, homemade yogurt, berries, and cold cuts. We would welcome your comments on which items we can add that you missed. It would mean a great deal to us if you would give us a chance to regain your trust in order for us to welcome you back to our Inn for a more enjoyable and pleasantly memorable guest experience.

Kind regards,
Corinne Finn-Heyl
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308 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
  • Sleep Quality
  • Rooms
  • Service
  • Value
  • Cleanliness
Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (56)
Date | Rating
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English first
England
Level Contributor
52 reviews
28 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 51 helpful votes
Reviewed 24 July 2014

We booked this hotel as part of a trip to celebrate my birthday ( a momentus one!) and it was the only one which disappointed. We certainly received real American hospitality from others but here we were given Room 9 which must (at least I hope) be the smallest and most ill-equipped in the hotel. On arrival there was a half bottle of sparkling wine and a few nibbles but when looking around for somewhere to sit and enjoy there was only a dressing table stool or hard window seat in front of the air-conditioning unit. Hardly 5 star furnishings. The room was in the eves and the only approach to the bed was by bending at a 45degree angle or being three foot tall. I hate to think what would happen if you woke in the night and forgot to duck!!!!
We discussed our dissatisfaction with the management on duty and were offered the Blue Suite at an additional cost of $100 a night. We declined this offer as we felt that the first room was not fit for purpose and eventually they agreed to provide the suite free of charge.
At no time during our stay did any member of senior management approach us to discuss this.
Whilst we were happy with the change of room there is no way I would have been willing to pay the upgrade fee nor indeed the full cost as the decoration and fittings are very tired with stained chairs and carpets, leaking taps and a strange noise emanating from the fireplace.
On a positive note the reception staff and junior management were extremely friendly and efficient. Thank you.
We feel this hotel is perhaps living on past glories and does not equate with European 5 star standards.
I would not recommend this hotel as I feel until it improves its maintenance programme there are far superior establishments in the area which offer better standards and value for money.

Room Tip: Do not book Room 9
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  • Stayed July 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Service
Helpful?
5 Thank LesleyDick
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
WBIInnkeeper, General Manager at Grace White Barn Inn and Spa, responded to this review, 26 July 2014
Dear Lesley Dick,

Thank you very much for sharing your honest observations about your visit with us in a Traditional Room at The White Barn Inn, followed by a complimentary upgrade to one of the Inn's Junior Suites. While it is customary and standard operating procedure to offer an upgrade for an additional fee, the $100.00 upgrade fee alluded to in your Trip Advisor review was considerably less than the going rate for a White Barn Inn Junior Suite. When we realized you were unconditionally displeased with the option of upgrading for an additional $100.00, we provided you the Junior Suite as a complimentary upgrade. We are, nonetheless, grateful and proud that our hospitality team stood out in your memory as being "extremely friendly and efficient." It goes without saying we take quite seriously a review whose headline is "very disappointed," and we consistently evaluate how we can improve the overall guest experience so that discerning Relais & Chateaux guests like yourselves will feel they have received full value for their dollar. One of the Five Cs that distinguish Relais & Chateaux hospitality is "Calm," and while we apologize that a senior management individual did not seek you out to discuss your concerns, we believe that guests at White Barn Inn stay with us to enjoy a calm, serene, and restful atmosphere. Trusting, in good faith, that we had succeeded in correcting the guest room issue by the complimentary upgrade to a Junior Suite, we did not want to intrude upon your remaining leisure time by re-visiting an issue that we hoped had been successfully remedied. Needless to say, we shall necessarily re-think that philosophy, based upon your having felt ignored by us. Actually, it was quite to the contrary. Because we respected your privacy, we did not want to trespass further upon your time about a situation that had been stressful to you. I can assure you that your concern was shared immediately by my team. Please be assured we shall take into serious consideration, as well, the variety of building shortcomings you cite. Despite your current perspective, we do look forward to your possibly choosing to return to The White Barn Inn & Spa to enjoy a visit that will indeed merit a much more positive and pleasurable guest experience.

Kind regards,

Corinne Finn-Heyl
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Great Neck, New York
Level Contributor
47 reviews
16 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 24 helpful votes
Reviewed 22 July 2014

How do you define perfection? The White Barn Inn in Kennebunk might be it! from the time I called and spoke to Katie to make my reservation until the time we departed the parking lot after a two night stay- all was just so well done. At first we were not going to stay here because the web site had them booked, luckily because it was mid-week we had a nice selection of rooms. our room was in the annex and at first when I saw the three flights of stairs I was concerned about getting my luggage upstairs, no worries; Will, who also parked the car, carried the stuff upstairs effortlessly and even was able to get us a refrigerator for our room without any kind of hitch. the rooms were so well done, clean, well stocked and extremely comfortable. On this visit, we did not eat at the restaurant, but did enjoy a great breakfast there on both mornings. The pool area is beautiful, relaxing and the pool side service attendants were eager to help. My only complaint, if I had to have one, was the internet was a little spotty in the room only. Other than that very minor issue, we look forward to staying at this great property again sooner than later. Next time, I would like to try the waterfront accommodations.

  • Stayed July 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Location
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank philip w
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Boca Raton, Florida
Level Contributor
57 reviews
13 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 51 helpful votes
Reviewed 20 July 2014

We had a truly amazing stay. Upscale property in every way with a bed and breakfast feel. The location was perfect - close to everything but not directly where the crowds are. The staff were all friendly and helpful.

  • Stayed June 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank mkg623
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Nashville, Tennessee
Level Contributor
577 reviews
36 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 203 helpful votes
Reviewed 18 July 2014

We recently stayed at the White Barn Inn as part of trip to New England to celebrate our husbands 60th birthdays. We booked our rooms 7 mos. in advance and were told we had the same rooms on the 3rd floor. Because we were traveling for almost 3 wks the 4 of us had a lot of luggage. I knew they had no elevators as we had stayed there 12 yrs before and were traveling quite a bit lighter than this trip. The bellman greeted us and brought our bags promptly to our rooms. We were on the third floor, we were told that was the only floor that had the same room type for both parties. We had to go up two of the steepest and longest staircases I have ever seen. Our rooms were not the same as we were told., in fact our friends room was quite a bit smaller and the bathroom only had one vanity. We faired a little better with a double vanity and a little more room but not much. There are no dresser drawers only a couple of small cubbies in the small closet. There is so many decorative items on the small amount of flat surfaces that they are not of much use. We had a large silver chalice and various other items in our room. Our friends went to the front desk to see if they could get the same room as we had or at least one with 2 vanities but were told none were available. They could not unpack and had to use the one chair for their items. We could not go to their room because there was not enough room in it.

Regarding the rooms, aside from the size they were clean. We asked for blankets instead of the comforter but they never made the bed up with them. They just put them at the foot of the bed. The water pressure in the shower was weak. We also found the beds to be too hard. The A/C was not the best and a little noisy as was the street noise. The Inn sits very close to a busy street.

Being it was the end of May we expected the pool to be open. It was not, nor were we told this when we asked about the property.

We all went down to the parlor for the afternoon tea and sweets. I poured what was suppose to be hot water in my cup but it was cold. I was told it was not heated yet. Afternoon tea with no tea I guess.

Breakfast the next morning was mostly muffins, some fruits, breads and a room temp quiche. They also bring toast to the table. This was fine except for the morning we ordered off the menu. They brought the toast right away and then the eggs. Needless to say the toast was cold and when we asked for a new order it came way after we were finished with the eggs. The portions are quite small, in fact the hashbrowns which were told was enough for 2 were the size of 2 silver dollars. Two bites for each of us. I think a property like this should include this in the cost of the room. It was about $45.00 for breakfast for 2.

We inquired at the front desk about restaurants in the area and were given the name of a place that was long gone. When we made our Inn reservations back in Oct we were told the White Barn Restaurant booked up quickly and we should make our res ASAP. We did just that but were given 6:00PM. Even though I told them this was for our husbands’ birthday they could not accommodate us any later. No waitlist either. Several months later my husband was checking Open Table and found the 7:30 we had originally wanted. I called to cancel the 6:00 and told them about Open Table. They had no answer for why this occurred.

The best part of our stay was our nightly visit with Cyril the bartender in the White Barn Bar. He is absolutely wonderful. The evening we had dinner he arranged for us to have a tour of the kitchen and wine cellar and even introduced us to the chef. The only problem with the bar is there is a constant rattling of glasses and bottles. If you were in Calif. you would swear it was an earthquake. Cyril said it was because the kitchen was directly behind the wall with the glasses. It was annoying but Cyril was worth it. Our dinner was nice. Cyril had told us about the lobster and I was the only one to have it. Everyone else wished they had taken his advice. So if you eat at the White Barn you should not miss it. Halibut was good too but not like the lobster.

I filled out the online questionnaire and promptly got an email from Albert Black the Assistant Innkeeper. He was apologetic for the missteps. I emailed him back thanking him for his response mentioning it is rare to hear back from anyone about anything. Shortly after I was checking my bill and noticed that we paid 2 different rates for the 3 nights we were there. I did not remember being told there would be a rate change. First night $450.00 next 2 nights $490.00. I e-mailed Albert Black asking about this but he never responded. That was over one month ago.

To summarize: Definitely would eat at the restaurant. Would not stay there unless I was traveling very light and probably not then either. We considered a cottage but the price was high and it was at least a 5 min. walk from the Inn. Not sure about the annex rooms but other travelers said they were pricy. I suggest looking into the Grand Hotel in town. We went in to get a brochure and it sure looked nice.

Room Tip: Inn sits on a busy road. Cottages are a 5 min. walk from Inn. Take into consideration that there ar...
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  • Stayed May 2014, travelled with friends
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank Patty B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
WBIInnkeeper, General Manager at Grace White Barn Inn and Spa, responded to this review, 25 July 2014
Dear Patty B,

As we discussed during your stay and after your departure your satisfaction is very important to us and if we fall short in our service we make every effort to regain your trust.
We still value your concerns, however we are under the impression that we had explained and addressed every issue with you. We truly apologize that you felt that you have not received our full attention in these matters.
The White Barn Inn main inn building is the historic part of our Inn, which is the reason that not all rooms have the same layout. Every room has its own charm and we categorize the rooms by its amenities. In your case you booked two superior queen rooms, both of which feature a queen size bed, flat screen TV, walk in rain shower and a free standing soaking tub. These amenities where confirmed with you upon booking, and were provided during your stay in both accommodations.
I regret that we where not able to upgrade you to one of our larger accommodations since we where fully committed. I would like to encourage you to contact me directly so that I may assist with finding a accommodations which will meet your expectations.

In regards to your dining experience, we always encourage our customers to book their dinning reservations at their earliest convenience, as the restaurant tends to book up quickly, and certain table times are more popular than others. However last minute cancellations can occur at any time, which we feel might have been the cause of a more preferable time being available once your spouse looked online. We strive in every way to assure you have the dining time and experience in the restaurant that we are renowned for, however things can change quiet quickly.

Lastly, we are very open that our rates fluctuate for many reasons, such as the different Maine seasons. Our reservation team is trained to clearly quote each room night's rate, and the average rate to all of our customers for your convenience. This assures that there is the upmost clarity when it comes to charges occurred throughout the stay.

Please be assured that your comments have been shared with the team, and that we feel we have addressed them thouroughly during your stay with us, and in the time since. We value our guests and their feed back immensely

Kind regards,

Corinne Finn-Heyl
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Sarasota, Florida
Level Contributor
55 reviews
13 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 28 helpful votes
Reviewed 3 July 2014

Truly a wonderful place to be on so many levels! From the minute I made the phone call to Cassidy who couldn't do enough for us to check out from our romantic garden 4 cottage we had a great customer experience! The entire staff could not be more welcoming, happy, polite, courteous and well informed about anything you wanted to know from the food to the area, the service was impeccable. The White Barn has truly earned the rights to add fine dining and lodging when they describe the inn. High tea, bicycles, lobster by the beautiful pool, fab room service - since they knew we wanted to have breakfast watching Wimbledon and the GRAND finale......drum roll please .....was dinner - really amazing food, great service and the romantic ambience completed our trip! I will be back and you should too !

  • Stayed July 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Lola W
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
London
Level Contributor
20 reviews
16 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 11 helpful votes
Reviewed 1 July 2014

On a recent tour of New England we were fortunate enough to stay at the White Barn Inn - a beautiful Relais & Chateau property - where nothing was too much trouble for out hosts. Everything from our room to the outdoor swimming pool and the excellent dining were superb. On arrival we were given a short tour of the property by Albert, an extremely kind and helpful gentleman, and shown to our garden room which was relatively small but delightful nonetheless with every necessity available and an extremely comfortable bed. The view from the room was super - we had a large picture window overlooking beautiful green trees and plants and we were told to look our for small animals that sometimes appeared In the undergrowth. We also had a lovely covered fireplace in our room which we imagine would be very cosy on chilly evenings. The only downside was that on our first night we anticipated having dinner in their lovely dining room but unfortunately they were fully booked. We were told afterwards that it was the only five star restaurant north of Boston so this wasn't too surprising. Dinner reservations therefore highly recommended! The second night we booked for dinner and it was delicious with delightful ambience and very helpful and attentive staff. Indeed, during our whole stay everyone was helpful, friendly and accommodating. Chef even prepared a plate of 'dairy-free' sandwiches for me at afternoon tea (which came complimentary). All in all a wonderful stay, our huge thanks to everyone.

Room Tip: We imagine that all rooms are beautifully furnished and have extremely comfortable beds.
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  • Stayed June 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank VignaleLondon
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Grace White Barn Inn and Spa

Property: Grace White Barn Inn and Spa
Address: 37 Beach Ave, Kennebunk, ME 04043-7614
Phone Number:
Region: United States > Maine > Kennebunks > Kennebunk
Amenities:
Business Centre with Internet Access Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #3 of 8 Hotels in Kennebunk
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££££
Hotel Class:4 star — Grace White Barn Inn and Spa 4*
Number of rooms: 27
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Kennebunkport--jewel in the crown of the Maine Coastline, perfect for your own ideal stay. Grace White Barn Inn & Spa (a member of the prestigious Relais et Chateaux) offers sumptuous guestrooms that boast true luxury and comfort. Surrender to our full spa experiences... energize and beautify as our Spa Director creates your personal revitalization. And experience the only AAA 5-Diamond, Forbes 5-Star restaurant north of New York City. The setting is unique, encompassing two restored barns from the 1820's. Here savor the rich flavors of New England and coastal Maine. Your Grace White Barn Inn & Spa experience is sure to bring everlasting memories. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
White Barn Hotel Kennebunk
The White Barn Inn Kennebunkport Me
Maine White Barn Inn
White Barn Inn
Grace White Barn Inn And Spa Kennebunk, Maine

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