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“Idiosyncratic, eccentric, but charmingly good”
Review of Royal Oak Hotel

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Royal Oak Hotel
Ranked #2 of 3 Rosthwaite B&B and Inns
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed 19 November 2011

Night 2 of our C2C walk. We'd been told The Royal Oak was idiosyncratic, and so when we got there after a long day of walking through the wind, rain and mist, it was with some trepidation that we checked in.

Well, the place is eccentric but we really enjoyed our stay. The lounge areas are dark and furnished from past times, but the bedrooms (or the twin room we had) was large, light and airy, and the ensuite bathroom was large, well heated and offered a bath with a shower over the bath. On the night we were there, there were some problems with our toilet and hot water, but they were attended to quickly and efficiently.

"Efficiently" is actually a word that applies to the Royal Oak. It seems to be run by supreme professionals. Our hostess was welcoming, showed a sharp sense of humour and didn't appear to be fazed by anything. Dinner was announced at 7.00 pm with a gong and within minutes the dining room was filled with happy, talkative walkers and the three course meal plus cheese just appeared! "Efficiency" - there it is again! The wine list was good (try the Bests Shiraz if it's still on the list) and the food was not only good, but was served by friendly and "efficient" staff.

There is a good and well used drying room which was essential as The Lake District was being whipped by the tail end of the hurricane that had hit the US. The bar is small and after dinner most people seem to drift off to the pub next door to party on.

There was a major storm the night we were there and part of the downstairs area apparently flooded, resulting in our hostess having been up since 4.00 am in recovery mode. Didn't cause a blip in the service. Breakfast was great, again served in a friendly and engaging fashion, and check out was quick and effective...."efficient".

I loved this place. It is eccentric and is from a bygone era but it is run professionally and has no pretence about it at all. It is comfortable, welcoming, warm and...well, "efficient". It just works and when I come back to do the C2C in 2013, I'll be staying here again!

  • Stayed: September 2011, travelled with friends
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1  Thank Davred
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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230 - 236 of 270 reviews

Reviewed 18 November 2011

This is a family run hotel. Having stayed at this hotel in Rosthwaite 6 times in the last 5 years and found most of the residents like my wife and I are regulars at the place, staying once or twice a year there clearly is something very positive about it. The rooms are clean, the food is excellent and quite adeqauate, The staff are very friendly and helpful, The location for walking in Borrowdale is superb and cannot be bettered. We like many other people will be back again next year.

Room Tip: Rooms vary some have bath and shower others only a shower. There is ample off the road car parking.
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  • Stayed: November 2011, travelled as a couple
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Thank englandlancy
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 7 November 2011

Very welcoming but more like a retirement home. That said all the guests were very entertaining. Food portions are a little on the small side for a hungry man that has been out all day. Room very clean and big and plenty of hot water.

  • Stayed: October 2011, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank PeterboroughSandy
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 1 November 2011

We are really delighted to have found this hotel.For years we have looked for a comfortable base for our regular Lake District trip and now we are happy to return to the Royal Oak.It is in Rosthwaite village , the heart of Borrowdale but it is not simply the location but the whole experience.
The decor has a hint of the 50's but we think the ambiance is fine.We are less interested in this than in a thoughtful and unobtrusive service There is a friendly spirit among the staff and the food is plentiful and well cooked. There is a lot of local knowledge and lots of Lake District books . Coffee, mints and chat in the lounge with a real fire but internet access in the back lounge if you need it. If you want to go to the theatre in Keswick, you are simply served early without fuss so this is also recommended
I even had a comfortable bed!(If you read my other reviews you will understand that this issue has ruined other places for me) Our room was spacious with noise of stream
I note the comment about an insecure drying room and do not think I have seen a secure one.. Surely the point is that there is somewhere to dry your wet things which you the guest can access.There is a sense ot trust here and all are here to enjoy the often wet Lakeland so why would they steal your boots etc when they must have their own?
There are loyal customers who keep returning, we will join them.

Room Tip: the annexe may be quieter
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  • Stayed: September 2011, travelled as a couple
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Thank persistent
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 26 October 2011

I've never been anywhere that sounds a gong for dinner and some of the furniture belonged in 1950.....hmmm...and as for the floral wallpaper! This place is very dated, certainly not suitable for walkers who can't guarantee when they will be back. Dinner is 7PM prompt! The staff were helpful and friendly enough and the location is A1. Some of the group complained about overly soft beds.

  • Stayed: October 2011, travelled with friends
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1  Thank SWP479
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 20 October 2011

Stayed here after 3rd day on Cumbria Way. Recd a warm welcome. Room was fine with good sized bathroom, WITH A WELCOME BATH! Nice to have the quiet of no TV in rooms. But, as it was Wimbledon, went to TV room and watched in the company of a couple who have been staying here for many years. A great recommendation.
Dinner was served to all at 7.00 Good home cooked meal efficiently served. No choice as such but very good roast beef. Same for breakfast.
Coffee and mints served in cosy lounges. Village a delight for a stroll after dinner. It is the sort of place we would return to. You will get to know the other guests if you stay for a few days.

  • Stayed: June 2011, travelled with friends
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Thank david_anna
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 7 October 2011

A less than warm welcome awaited here, although that may have been because we were wet and smelly after a lengthy days walk on the coast to coast. The drying room was totally inadequate and relatively insecure. With large amounts of clothing and boots, very little got dry. The rooms were very small and barely able to fit the two bags, the "en-suite" was even cosier!! The dinner package which we were obliged to take was poor value for money and while tasty enough was relatively plain. One nice aspect was the nice lounge by the fire for coffee afterwards and a nice chat with other guests. The inflexibility with the ability to have an early breakfast was also frustraing.

Room Tip: Try a different hotel!!
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  • Stayed: September 2011, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank Paul D
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Royal Oak Hotel

Address: Borrowdale | Keswick, Rosthwaite, Keswick CA12 5XB, England
Region: United Kingdom > England > Cumbria > Lake District > Keswick > Borrowdale > Rosthwaite
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Suites
Hotel Style:
Ranked #2 of 3 B&Bs / Inns in Rosthwaite
Price Range: £110 - £127 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:2.5 star — Royal Oak Hotel 2.5*
Number of rooms: 14
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The Royal Oak is a small traditional family run hotel ideally situated in the "Heart of Borrowdale", six miles south of Keswick. Once an 18th Century farmhouse, it has been established as a walkers' hotel for over 100 years. Our English breakfasts and home cooked dinners sustain even the most energetic and although we do not provide a choice, we take great care to select varied and appealing menus. Packed Lunches and special diets are also available. ... more   less 
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