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“Excellant wedding venue or countryside retreat”

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The Priest House by the River
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed 11 November 2013

My wife and I booked into the cottage suites at the hotel in company with two friends for Friday 1 November 13 and then the whole hotel had been booked for a wedding celebration for Saturday into Sunday 2 & 3 November. We all arrived together and check in at the main hotel by Chris was very quick.
We had booked afternoon tea in the Brasserie which was very relaxing with an excellent choice of teas and plenty to eat. Friday night we returned to the Brasserie for our evening meal. By that time the bridal party had arrived so they could settle in. Excellent service and good variety of food. My wife and I had the fish and chips option after our starter of course!!
Saturday of course was given over to the wedding so after breakfast we had a breath of air walking to the nearby garden centre as the weather alternated from sun to rain then back again!
The lunchtime food service was not able to provide sandwiches or light bite snacks for arriving guests but after a quick change of mind the kitchen staff were able to deviate slightly from their wedding meal duties and provide light lunch alternatives! Thanks to the duty manager intervention.
The wedding service and whole celebration was excellent and our evening table service, in particular drink waiter, Alex, was excellent. Well done everyone.
The cottage rooms have both ground floor and first floor availability. They are only a couple of minutes walk from the main hotel and there were even umbrellas both in the cottages as well as the hotel for guests use. Well done there.
Our only groan was that the bed mattress and pillows were very lumpy - not firm but lumpy.
The old rusted and no longer used water wheel all added to the charm of the place. The water swirling current at the front of the hotel lent itself to excellent photographic opportunity for the bride and groom!
The drink prices have been mentioned in other reviews and we also thought even though the hotel is in its own grounds away from the hustle of Castle Donnington the drinks were too expensive. As a plus the Hotel chain do have their own diners card equivalent which we obtained via the web site before our visit. I recommend anyone visiting to this hotel chain to join - there are some great offers once you have obtained it including reduced food, drink and stay prices.
All in all an excellent weekend started each morning with a great choice at breakfast. All that and the ghostly tower too!!

Room Tip: If you want a ground floor option use the cottage rooms.
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  • Stayed: November 2013, travelled with friends
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2  Thank BHart29
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Gwyn J, General Manager at The Priest House by the River, responded to this reviewResponded 16 December 2013

Thank you for placing a review on Trip Advisor following your stay at the Hotel.

Once again we are very fortunate to have a review which highlights the quality of the team, I do believe they are what makes the Priest House a great hotel as each member of the team truly goes out of their way to ensure all guests experience the wow factor during their stay.

I look forward to welcoming you back very soon.

Regards,

Gwyn

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509 - 515 of 787 reviews

Reviewed 31 October 2013

Booked this venue for a University department Away Day. From the start I was impressed with the communications and it made the arrangements go very smoothly. We selected the Garden Suite for our conference for up to 40 people and it proved to be a lovely choice, with a small patio area accessed by French doors which could be used for breakout sessions on a fine day, or somewhere to take your coffee break in the fresh air.
Catering was set up in the room just behind the suite and the refreshments at morning and afternoon break have to be commended for their taste and uniqueness. Not here the bog standard biscuits you normally receive at such meetings, but fresh hot mini croissants filled with ham and cheese, among other savoury and sweet delights, with a different selection of equally tasty morsels for afternoon tea. The superb buffet lunch was plentiful and very tasty, with lots of choice.
The hotel is located down a secluded wooded lane and opens up into a delightful riverfront setting with manicured gardens. It is a peaceful haven, with ample car parking. The hotel fixtures and fittings are top class and the staff friendly, efficient and helpful. Nothing was too much trouble. All our team were impressed with the quality of the place in every respect, and all agreed we would love to come back again.
The Priest House already makes for an absolutely stunning setting for a wedding or other special celebration, with superb accommodation if required, either inside or outside in the row of pretty cottages, opposite, which border the driveway, but it is equally excellent for any sort of business meeting such as ours. Highly recommended.

  • Stayed: October 2013, travelled on business
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Thank Joanna55
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Gwyn J, General Manager at The Priest House by the River, responded to this reviewResponded 16 December 2013

Thank you for taking the time to complete a review on Trip Advisor.

At the Priest House we ensure all team members are kept up to date with regards to reviews so we can where necessary learn and improve on constructive feedback. I know they will be delighted with your review highlighting the positive attitude they displayed during your break and I know David our head chef will be pleased to read about the excellent quality dishes you experienced.

On behalf of the team I look forward to welcoming you all back to the Priest House in the near future.

Regards,

Gwyn Jones

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Reviewed 21 October 2013

This was booked for an afternoon tea last week after a previous experience there. The setting is lovely and tranquil with even the irregular noise from the racetrack not managing to disturb the peace. The river setting is wonderful and adds to the ambience.

Whilst the afternoon tea was really great the service was extremely slow, so much so that it took over 40 minutes for the food to arrive which meant that the pots of tea needed to be replenished. A staff meeting had taken everyone except one person away and he had to cope with our booking of seven people. One would have hoped that with that size of booking some provision would have been made to ensure that more staff were available.

Apart from the wait the experience was good. Prompter service would have made it fabulous.

  • Stayed: October 2013, travelled with friends
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1  Thank Gers26
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Gwyn J, General Manager at The Priest House by the River, responded to this reviewResponded 16 December 2013

Thank you for taking the time to write a review about your guest experience. I was certainly disappointed to learn of your frustrations that you encountered during your visit with us as this is by no means the level of service we wish to deliver here at the Priest House.

Please be assured that I have shared your feedback with my colleagues so that they are fully aware of how you felt. Should you wish to discuss this further please do not hesitate to contact me directly via email gbjones@handpicked.co.uk

Regards,

Gwyn

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Reviewed 20 October 2013

I have read quite a few negative comments about the hotel but ours was a very positive experience. Lovely location, very helpful & friendly staff. Our room was very clean & spacious. There was a wedding on so everyone did their up most to ensure that we were no inconvenienced at all. Breakfast was perfect - lots of choice and plenty of it. My only criticisms would be the very experience drinks and wine and the extortionate cost for the cheeseboard off the dessert menu - double the price of a normal dessert!

  • Stayed: October 2013, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank WidnesWanderer
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Gwyn J, General Manager at The Priest House by the River, responded to this reviewResponded 16 December 2013

Thank you for your review on Trip Advisor.

I do believe that many of our guests use Trip Advisor to obtain honest feedback from previous guests. It is always reassuring to read a review such as yours where it highlights the hard work all the team members do in order to make our guests stays memorable.

I am delighted that you rated your stay as very positive and I look forward to welcoming you back to the Priest House Hotel in the near future when I can assure you of our very best attention.

Regards,

Gwyn

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Reviewed 18 October 2013

The hotel is in a lovely peaceful setting, right near the river. There`s plenty of car parking space and the gardens are small but attractive and well maintained. The main attributes of the hotel are the staff who were all unfailingly polite and friendly without seeming obsequious. The service at both dinner and breakfast was very good and we enjoyed dinner,with no pressure on us to order extra drinks. I also appreciated flexibility in the menu, again thanks to the staff.
On the other hand , the hotel lacks a real lounge and has very little character. There wasn`t much food out for the buffet breakfast, as if guests were being discouraged from eating too much. Although it was very clean, our room was disappointingly small, and I find it hard to believe that this was an upgraded room as promised in our booking package. It felt almost oppressive but we slept well in this peaceful setting.

  • Stayed: October 2013, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank tyngelli
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Gwyn J, General Manager at The Priest House by the River, responded to this reviewResponded 16 December 2013

Thank you for taking the time to write a review about your guest experience. I was delighted you found the hotel team to be excellent and the service at both breakfast and dinner to be very good. However I was disappointed to learn of your frustrations that you encountered during your stay with us here at the Priest House.

Please be assured that I have shared your feedback with my colleagues so that they are fully aware of how you felt. Should you wish to discuss this further please do not hesitate to contact me directly via email gbjones@handpicked.co.uk

Regards,

Gwyn

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Reviewed 18 October 2013

We stayed here on the 5th October for my partners birthday. Being a special day I booked the Stocker Suite which is in the old tower on the top floor. The room was very spacious and rather well decorated with a cosy private feel to it. However it was tired in a few places- toilet flush was loose and would stick,one of the bed posts was hanging off,the windows were filthy and dead flies seemed to be everywhere. Not a four star room. We ventured down to the bar for a couple of drinks and found one of the members of staff to be very very helpful and polite (Chris) he was an absolute credit to the place. As with all HPH the drinks are far to overpriced. Evening meal was very good with a great selection and great tastes. The chef prepared my partners dessert with a birthday message on, which was a nice touch. But....when we went off to bed the noise from the nearby wedding reception disco was unbearable. The lampshades in the room were shaking!! I rang reception to complain but nothing was done about it and sleep finaly came about 01.30. No good will gesture was offered on departure even though the complaint was logged. HPH need to decide wether they are a wedding venue OR a 4 Star Hotel chain because the 2 dont mix. Would I go back? Yes so long as there was no wedding taking place.

Room Tip: Stay when there is no wedding taking place.
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  • Stayed: October 2013, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank BaldyTommo
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
PriestHouse, General Manager at The Priest House by the River, responded to this reviewResponded 23 October 2013

Dear Guest
Thank you for your recent review and I am sorry for the issues you experienced in your bedroom which I have addressed with the housekeeper, who has subsequently introduced more rigorous inspections to eradiate such issues. In future all bookings will be advised of late discos, to ensure guests are made aware when booking a room, with the knowledge of possible disruption. Kind regards Michael

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Reviewed 16 October 2013

With an important meeting to run, we wanted to set up the evening before to ensure everything was ready. Mick, the Duty Manager, could not have been more helpful. He remained patient and positive, even when we asked him to dismantle the 5 tables he had just put up for us! The service for our meeting the following day (also Mick) was excellent - prompt and attentive. He even gave me a brown bag picnic for my long journey home.
Many thanks - and also to Chris, for his help with our printing and technological needs.

  • Stayed: October 2013, travelled on business
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1  Thank Uhannah
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
PriestHouse, General Manager at The Priest House by the River, responded to this reviewResponded 23 October 2013

Dear Guest
I was delighted to read your comments following your recent stay and conference and pleased to note your kind comments regarding the service you received from Mick and Chris. Kind regards Michael

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about The Priest House by the River

Address: Kings Mills, Castle Donington DE74 2RR, England (Formerly The Priest House Hotel)
Region: United Kingdom > England > Derbyshire > Castle Donington
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Suites Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#3 Business Hotel in Castle Donington
#4 Luxury Hotel in Castle Donington
#5 Romantic Hotel in Castle Donington
Price Range: £75 - £132 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4 star — The Priest House by the River 4*
Number of rooms: 42
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Set in a tranquil and stunning location on the banks of the River Trent, The Priest House's history is a rich one that can be traced back almost 1,000 years. Built around a mill tower with its very own water wheels, this 42 bedroom hotel is perfectly placed for a romantic break, an exclusive conference venue or a picture perfect wedding. We've hand-picked a fine selection of food and drink to compliment the charm and romance of our English Countryside setting. Fine dine in our beautiful dining room or relax in our newly renovated and re-named Millstream Bar & Terrace where you can enjoy al fresco dining overlooking the River Trent in the Summer months. We invite you to come and relax and really feel at home with us. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Priest House Hotel Castle Donington
Priest Hotel Castle Donington
The Priest House By The River Castle Donington, Derbyshire

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