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“Might Have Been Australia's Capital”
5 of 5 bubbles Review of The Seahorse Inn

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The Seahorse Inn
Ranked #3 of 8 Hotels in Eden
Certificate of Excellence
Canberra, Australia
Level Contributor
48 reviews
30 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 41 helpful votes
“Might Have Been Australia's Capital”
Reviewed 18 March 2014

Few who journey along the coast between Sydney and Melbourne stop halfway at Boydtown. More should because of its historic significance; it could have been Australia’s capital. Boydtown was founded in 1843 by Scottish wheeler-dealer Benjamin Boyd as his base for shipping, farming and whaling interests. At the time he was one of the biggest landholders in the colonies and dreamed of his township becoming capital of a united Australia. But his empire foundered and all that’s left is Seahorse Inn and Boyd’s great, stone, whale-spotting tower.
The inn is in an impressive beachside location and has been tastefully restored but its character is a bit schizophrenic; part pub, part boutique hotel with fine dining restaurant. Some features jar, such as too much chrome and light timber, and the gaudy sign for the pub’s Bistro.
However staff were helpful and we had a large comfortable room (#8), with balcony and superb views. And what’s not to enjoy about fine dining at bistro prices!

  • Stayed March 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
Thank oztraveller61
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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205 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (63)
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English first
Melbourne, Australia
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
Reviewed 14 February 2014

We arrived here for our honeymoon. Nobody was at the reception desk, so we rang the bell and waited a period of time until the receptionist arrived. The receptionist had a coldness about her, was very brisk and not at all friendly. We actually had to ask her how her day was, not the other way around! We went up to our room, to be greeted with a terrible smell. I lifted up the toilet seat to use the toilet, and to my horror-there was, well, 'waste'. An actual, unflushed poo, creating a dark rim around the entire bowl. I was absolutely mortified. It was beyond disgusting The receptionist, no matter how much I paged her, was nowhere to be found. I eventually found her out the back in the bar. Granted, she personally came up and cleaned the toilet herself, but she still lacked warmth and genuine empathy. $315 a night, on our honeymoon, and there was poo in the toilet... I wanted to leave but my new husband insisted we relax and open the windows. One window was broken, so could not be opened. Was anything right in this place?? So then he suggested we have a spa. Went to use the spa-and it was covered with dead bugs. A lady then came up to our room with flowers, strawberries and champagne to make amends. My husband insisted that I not tell this lady about the dead bugs or window, to save her from further embarrassment. While trying to enjoy the champagne and put the toilet drama from my mind, loud music started playing, permeating through the walls. I went downstairs now completely distraught, and asked the receptionist if we could move rooms as the next room were playing loud music. "Oh, oops, that's my music" the receptionist told me, "I've accidentally played it through the hotel hallways". I went back to our room. Last straw!!!! I am no princess, and have travelled extensively through the most dodgy parts of the world...but have never experienced anything remotely like this. We ended up leaving. The hotel then rang and left us voice messages. On one of the voice messages, the caller didn't hang up properly, and could be heard saying nastily, "They won't call back". Never, ever in my life have I had such bad service. And poo in the toilet?! Just begs belief. We found another place at half the price, and it was just wonderful-simple, and nice. The Seahorse Inn is just not the classy boutique hotel it advertises itself to be.

  • Stayed February 2014
    • Value
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Helpful?
5 Thank LpChB
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed 14 February 2014

I'll be as fair as possible with this review.
The Seahorse Inn is a beautiful and historically-relevant hotel in the Eden/Boydtown region. When I first discovered it years ago, I decided that it would be a place I would like to share with a significant other.
Forward a few years and I am now on a mini-honeymoon with my new wife. With us deciding to travel the Sapphire Coast, I wanted to impress her with a stay at the Seahorse. As the bush fires in Victoria led to many road closures, I could not pre-book our stay there and made contact with the Seahorse three days before our intended arrival.
The girl I spoke with (poor thing was on the tail-end of a cold and could barely speak) was incredibly accommodating and slotted us in. Also, when we decided to exend our stay there to three nights and arrive a day earlier (called around 10AM with arrival mid-late the same day), the lady we spoke with was incredibly helpful.
Unfortunately, that is where the romance with The Seahorse Inn ended.
Upon check-in, we were met by a staff-member who, while not appearing unfriendly, was far from engaging or welcoming. Added to that, we were handed our keys and told where to go with zero post-check in interaction (e.g. Leading us and showing us the room. I believe that we arranged to stay in the highest-priced room at the Seahorse which was less than ten metres from reception).
When we opened the door to the room, my new wife was incredibly impressed by the room but noted that there was a slightly offensive smell to the bathroom. Upon investigation, she found (I'll put this delicately) solid human-waste sitting in the 'marked-clean' toilet. She contacted reception who did come and clean the residue immediately. We also found that the room showed other serious evidence of not being fully prepared prior to our arrival.
A lovely lady who I assumed was the duty manager arrived with a plate of hand-picked flowers, strawberries and two mini bottles of sparkling wine and was extremely apologetic for the toilet. She was lovely but unaware of the other things in the room that were substandard (I told my wife that I would drive into Eden to get cleaning things to clean the spa, the bathroom and other places so that she would be happy with the room. I had heavily promoted the hotel to her prior to our arrival).
As we settled down in the room, we heard the dull-though-loud-enough-to-be-distracting 'thump-thump' of music entering the room. It turned out that a staff member had inadvertently redirected her personal music (seriously, I love most music but what was playing was rubbish) through the hallways of the hotel.
What we thought would be a quiet, reclusive honeymoon in a boutique hotel turned into the exact opposite. Even though the music stopped after my wife reported it, we decided that after three strikes, we would stay somewhere else; within hours of arrival.
An adjunct is that subsequent to our leaving, the Seahorse did contact us late the night of our leaving, apologising for what had happened and offered us an offer to stay with them via voicemail. By that time, we were forced to find accommodation elsewhere and, in light of the initial letdown, we were not inclined to take up the offer.
Summary: The Seahorse Inn is a beautiful hotel. The initial booking process was incredibly easy and the staff members accommodating. Room cleanliness was below sub-standard for the star-rating and the above $300 AUD PN price-point. To the staff-member who initially met us at check-in: your lack of warmth, low level of friendliness, failure to show us to our room which was only metres away and your inability to realise that your personal music was being loudly broadcast through the hallways of what should be a quiet and serene hotel makes me question why you chose hospitality as your vocation.

Helpful?
2 Thank CraigandLauraB
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Traralgon
1 review
Reviewed 6 February 2014

The Seahorse inn presents well in its advertising. So my wife and I when looking for a special place for the weekend chose to stay there. We ride motorcycles and I am very fussy about where my bike is parked. We checked with the hotel what the parking arrangement were for bikes and we were advised that they had a secure courtyard for bikes. Upon arrival I checked the location for my bike before checking in to ensure it was adequate. Yep fantastic although the staff member checking me in thought I was nuts. We checked in and the room was very nice but smelled old which is to be expected. There was some mouldd in the shower and the toilet seat was broken, not what you expect in a four star place. Whilst at dinner the staff member that checked me in advised that the laundry people had arrived and that they had moved our bikes. What the! The staff member said she could not contact me although I had my phone on and on me at all times. The laundry people had rolled the bikes onto the lawn area and yep you guessed it the stands we're sinking. Because the bikes were locked they rolled my wife's bike next to a tree and then my much larger and heavier bike next to it. We got to them just before they fell. This was a massive let down because we would not have booked at this establishment if we thought the bikes would not be safe. Now back to dinner it was in the brasserie and my wife had a lovely meal. I ordered the rib steak medium, my first bite was well done. The steak was cut so badly that it was thin on one end and thick on the other. So steak well done one side medium on the other, I expect more at a four star establishment. Next night we ate at there fine dining restaurant which the meals are cooked in the brasserie, go figure. We seemed to be forgotten but the food was nice when it came. Overall nice relaxing weekend despite the incident with the bikes. The garden room was very peaceful.

  • Stayed January 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
Thank David B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Sydney, Australia
Level Contributor
20 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
Reviewed 1 February 2014

Tee SeaHorse Inn is a beautiful completely restored historic inn. The location is beautiful at the end of the bay on the beach, the rooms are comfortable, well appointed and quiet. The staff are friendly and helpful. WE enjoyed our stay

  • Stayed January 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
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Helpful?
1 Thank Terry652
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Melbourne, Australia
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed 25 January 2014

We stayed here on our touring drive from Sydney to Melbourne. We were given a free upgrade to an ocean view room, which made our stay so special. Located right on the beach this hotel is quaint with stunning beachfront views.

We had a lovely meal in the bistro restaurant and took a beautiful walk along the beach. The highlight was being able to fall asleep to the sound of the waves against the beach, magical.

  • Stayed January 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
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    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank colmonline101
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Sydney
Level Contributor
59 reviews
20 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 27 helpful votes
Reviewed 25 January 2014

We (a family of 4) stayed here for one night in room 5 while traveling up the east coast. The room was large and clean and had a lovely bathroom with spa. While it had no balcony, the front windows opened up and we could enjoy both the view and the sounds of the sea. We ate dinner in the brasserie which we enjoyed - especially the mussels (which were a 'special'). The bar and restaurants were also used by the nearby caravan park residents, which we liked as it gave the hotel (which is very small) a buzz in the evening, but after about 9 pm it was lovely and quiet.

Downside: The staff member who checked us in was very dour and unhelpful, but the receptionist (who also worked the bar and restaurant) who came on after her was incredibly helpful and friendly so more than made up for our unwelcoming reception. The continental breakfast was pretty average - but hey, we did not realise it was included in the price - so a bonus in our eyes!

We would certainly stay here again if we were in the area. It was a welcome oasis after a long day's drive.

Room Tip: Room 5 was a corner room on the second floor overlooking the bay - no balcony. Large enough for a fa...
See more room tips
  • Stayed January 2014, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank SueBMSydney
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about The Seahorse Inn

Property: The Seahorse Inn
Address: Boydtown Park Road, Eden, New South Wales 2551, Australia
Region: Australia > New South Wales > Eden
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Restaurant Room Service Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #3 of 8 Hotels in Eden
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££
Hotel Class:4 star — The Seahorse Inn 4*
Number of rooms: 10
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Also Known As:
The Seahorse Hotel Eden

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