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“Very welcoming”
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 15 June 2012

We stayed here whilst walking the Coast to Coast with our Border Terrier. We were met with a warm, friendly welcome. Our suitcase was already in our room awaiting our arrival and the room was a generous size with a good sized en-suite. We were offered tea and scones once we had had time to sort ourselves out, which was very welcome. I have wheat and dairy intolerances and Ann chatted to me to ensure that my dietry needs would be catered for. We were booked in for evening meal and I never manage to eat three courses - one reason because I have a small appetite and another reason because there is never three courses which cater for my intolerances. Ann had catered for me perfectly even though there was only one dish/option provided for each course. The food was delicious and very welcome after a 14 mile stint. Again, the breakfast was well presented and the staff were all very friendly. They only thing that would have been a preference for us was to have had a television in the room as opposed to having to go down to the television lounge as it would have been nice to have "chilled out" in comfy repose whilst watching some television after a tiring day.

  • Stayed: June 2012, travelled as a couple
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3  Thank Skinnybint15
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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216 - 222 of 270 reviews

Reviewed 10 June 2012

We left this hotel feeling that we had paid well over what we should have. £67 each dinner,bed and breakfast. The breakfast I have to say was lovely. Good quality sausages and bacon. The evening meal was also enjoyed by us both BUT only one option!! We arrived to be told that it was lamb for dinner 'is that okay?' When my partner asked what the alternative was as he doesn't really like lamb, he was told that a vegetarian option could be offered. So....we had lamb. I have reread the website and feel that it is not at all clear that you don't have a choice. Take it or leave it. We'd paid so we reluctantly took it.

The hotel itself is very dated. There is a difference between retaining charactor and dated. The lounge reminded me of an awful old peoples home, where the chairs are lined against the wall. Following a long hilly walk, we were looking forward to a nice soak in a bath - there wasn't one. This should be stated on the website also. The bathroom smelt of urine. That's probably the carpet on the floor. Very unhygienic. However, the rest of the room and hotel were very clean and the people very friendly. The hotel is ideally situated for some very nice walks too.

  • Stayed: June 2012, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank Linsi30
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
ndowie, Owner at Royal Oak Hotel, responded to this reviewResponded 12 June 2012

Thank you for your comments, we are sorry you were disappointed with your stay. I am afraid you had to pay our most expensive rate since you stayed one night at a weekend in our riverside annex but we still feel we offer good value for money.
The latest guests to check into that room have also mentioned a damp smell in the bathroom which we have now addressed, I am sorry you did not mention it to us at the time. Also five of our rooms have showers but nine have both baths and showers, some people need ground floor rooms with walk in showers which is where I think you were.
I am sorry you found the layout of the living rooms old fashioned and dated, many guests like to sit around in the evening and discuss with one another their days happenings and plans for the next day and often make friends with other couples who they then meet up with.
We will look at our website and see if we can make it clearer that we do not offer a choice of meals but our sample menus do show the range of meals we do with a main meat course and a vegetarian option if required which is what you say you were offered. We obviously like to please our visitors and pick up repeat business so appreciate you taking time to comment.

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Reviewed 31 May 2012

I walked in unannounced after hiking for a few days, and I must have looked like a poor drifter, not exactly the typical client for this place. However, they were very friendly, and, yes, they had a room available, and although it was a bit late already, they would rustle up some dinner. It turned out to be a fine one, just what I needed after a long hot day.

I slept like a baby and enjoyed a typical English breakfast next morning, plus a generous helping of cereral because I was a bit hungry.

The lounge had a nice selection of books, and in one of them I found an interesting scramble nearby. I asked the hotel owner if he knew the route. He didn't, but was very keen to read the description, and with his knowledge of the area he confirmed my thoughts about it and so I went out there.

On my return, I had a shower and dinner once more, but, as I already knew, the hotel was fully booked so I had to leave after that. I gladly would have stayed another night.

  • Stayed: May 2012, travelled solo
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4  Thank Rob G
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
ndowie, Owner at Royal Oak Hotel, responded to this reviewResponded 4 June 2012

Thank you for your feedback. We are happy you enjoyed your stay with us and hope to see you back in the future.

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Reviewed 30 May 2012

I guess not a lot has changed in the Royal Oak in the last 30 years - other than the price. Very average food - no choice at dinner, take it or leave it - it's built into the price - and a 2.50% surcharge when you pay by credit card - to which I wasn't alerted when I booked. No interest whatsoever in the customer. All in all, avoid if you can.

Stayed: May 2012, travelled solo
1  Thank JackSir
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 29 May 2012

Maybe some of the other reviewers were staying at a different hotel, or the reviews have been left by hotel management. Otherwise, something doesn't quite make sense.

This hotel is, quite simply, awful in every sense and could best be described as a 1970s throwback.

The hotel clearly hasn't been decorated for 30 years and showed it, both in terms of style (very dated) and quality (flaking paint, peeling wallpaper). My room was pokey, with minimal storage space and bedding that would have been cheap and nasty when it was purchased in the '70s.

Food was terrible at best: they do compulsory dinner with B&B (what year is this?) and I would assume that is the only way they would get any custom because it can't be down to the selection (none - you get what you're given) or standard of cooking (from the 'boil the life out of the veg' school of cookery).

In summary, this is a hotel which remains in business because it is one of the few places to stay in one of most beautiful places in the country. It is an embarrassment to the English tourist industry and it is good to see that there are fewer and fewer of such places still in business.

The only redeeming feature is that it is 30 seconds to the bar in the Scafell hotel next door.

  • Stayed: May 2012
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Thank Random_Person
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
ndowie, Owner at Royal Oak Hotel, responded to this reviewResponded 4 June 2012

Thank you for taking time to comment on the hotel. Naturally we are disappointed that you did not enjoy your stay with us but if you read many of the other reviews you will see that lots of people are very happy here and make many return visits. We certainly do not write the reviews ourselves but have a loyal customer base who are very happy here.
We work on a rolling programme of decoration and repairs and our beds and bedding are regularly replaced, I am not sure which room you were in but I do agree that some rooms are more spacious than others but the age and style of the hotel restricts us in some ways. All of our rooms meet the tourist board standards for facilities and quality standards and we feel that the decoration is in keeping with a traditional 17th century building.
Our website states that we provide a home cooked meal at a set time and you would have been asked when you checked in that you were happy with the main course that evening and offered an alternative if not. Providing a set meal enables us to serve you with a freshly prepared meal at a reasonable cost without producing everything out of the freezer, many people find that sitting down to a traditional home cooked meal a pleasant alternative to the 'pub grub' which is often served.
I am sorry that there has been a mismatch of expectations to the product but hope you enjoyed the rest of your holiday.

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Reviewed 29 May 2012

We are a group of 11 walkers and we got to the Royal Oak once every year. It is a great base for walking in the beautiful Lake District. Sue and Neil are very hospitable proprietors and all of the staff are also very friendly and helpful. The food is excellent and four courses are served at 7:30 pm each evening. Don't miss the dinner bell because evrything is freshly made on the premises. We would recommend the Royal Oak to anyone who is considering visiting Roshwaite and the surrounding area.

  • Stayed: May 2012, travelled with friends
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2  Thank peterggtod
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
ndowie, Owner at Royal Oak Hotel, responded to this reviewResponded 4 June 2012

Thank you for your very positive comments, we always enjoy your visits and look forward to welcoming you back next year. If you can manage another birthday we can manage another cake!

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Reviewed 15 May 2012

Having once again visited the Royal Oak Rosthwaite (our 6th visit) my wife and I were not disappointed. The staff were very friendly, the food was excellent and the ambiance of the hotel was homely. The location in Borrowdale is ideal for walking, direct from the hotel, in the mountains or the valleys. Following an excellent evening meal, we retired to the lounge for coffee where it was good to talk with other visitors, in front of an open fire. A return visit has already been booked. For any one wishing to visit the unspoiled Lake District this is an ideal hotel and location.

  • Stayed: May 2012, travelled as a couple
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3  Thank englandlancy
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: £107 - £122 (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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