This potentially wonderful hotel cost my girlfriend and I a lot of money to stay there for one weekend and to be honest it was far from what I expected.
Our room was booked in the mansion building. It coincided with one of the warmest weekends in the year.
Our allocated room was nice although overlooked the front car park which was a shame. The air-conditioning didn't work properly (a feature in all the rooms we were in) so reception called a maintenance man that started to unscrew a large panel in the ceiling. As he lowered the panel water literally poured from the ceiling. He quickly put the panel back and went for other tools.
We immediately spoke to the Guest Services Manager(Azalea) who's initial response to the problem was nothing short of pathetic. Her only body language was that this was a massive inconvenience if we wanted to move rooms, no apology, no shock that this build up of water was inches from ceiling lighting and a massive safety hazard.
It was only shortly after when querying her full name and position in the hotel that she seemed to have a switch of personalities.
We were offered an upgrade for one night to a suite that was available only that night which was a nice alternative although we'd have to switch rooms again the next day. I should add that even when you're told the aircon in this room works and we've tested it, it actually doesn't work properly. The unit in the living room worked and the unit in the bedroom didn't at all.
Switching rooms the next day was a pain as the reception were busy with a wedding checkout. When it eventually happened it was timed badly as we were off to the spa. Not all items were transferred to the new room which then involved more phone calls.
The new room was nice although when preparing to check out we were checking the room for any left items when I opened a cupboard door next to the mini bar that happened to also be an uncovered electricity connection unit. I've attached a photograph.
As you'll see in the photograph. I doubt it would pass any safety checks and if you had children, they could accidentally open this door not knowing that touching anything in front of them could kill them.
Please look at the photograph to realise the importance of this.
The final customer service failure was our checkout bill was approximately £200 greater than it should have been. It's quite unpleasant having to go through a bill and highlight to someone on the desk that we're being charged way more than the booked rate whilst a queue of people behind also wait to check out. Whilst it was resolved in less than five minutes, had I been one of the many overseas guests there that weekend we'd have probably unwittingly signed for it.
To look at, the hotel is impressive and it resides in beautiful countryside. The spa facilities are very good and the hot stone massage was probably my best yet. The food buffets are also superb with very hard working catering staff. We really enjoyed cycling around the local countryside canal paths.
I feel the hotel is compromised by poor guest management and a clear lack of investment in the mansion block. If you have children and are staying in the mansion block, please check areas I've highlighted for safety. I'm not risk averse at all but the junction box next to the mini bar seems like a very poorly thought through solution.
I hope the hotel management read this review look at the photograph and realise they need to improve the areas I've highlighted - if anything for safety.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- The Grove, London's country estate, is more than a five-star hotel. Set in 300 acres and only 18 miles from central London, the former home of the Earls of Clarendon is also a luxury 18-hole golf resort, a fabulous spa and unique venue for meetings, weddings and celebrations. Also included in The Grove's extensive facilities are three restaurants including Colette’s, awarded three AA rosettes. A 4acre Walled Garden with urban beach, tennis courts and outdoor pool. A selection of bike and jogging trials to enjoy with complimentary bike hire; and Anouska’s Kids’ Club, graded outstanding by OFSTED makes The Grove a parent and child-friendly resort. Lovingly restored to stunning effect, the property fuses contemporary design and original period architecture with exceptionally caring and professional service. We look forward to welcoming you soon. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Grove Chandlers Cross
- Grove Hotel Chandlers Cross
- The Grove Hotel Hertfordshire, UK