My husband and I stayed here Saturday night, having been across country sightseeing, I thought a spa hotel would be the perfect end to a great few days. I specifically chose this hotel because of the reviews on TripAdvisor.
As a surprise for my husband, I had booked a suite (the Shire Inns Suite Experience to be exact). On arrival at the hotel, it was clear a wedding was taking place by the guests milling around the entrance, having the smoking section here is not a great idea as guests congregated at the entrance of the hotel quite frequently blocking the path.
I was looking forward to the great service we were to expect, however the Receptionist barely cracked a smile at check in, taking my card for prepayment, booking us a table for dinner and handing us our key cards for the room and directing us to our room. I had prepaid £29 per person for dinner, this was not explained to me at check in nor was anything else. We were quite disappointed as we were sent on our way.
On the way to our room, we heard shouting down the corridor. Thinking it was guests, we were shocked to see members of housekeeping shouting down the corridor at each other (not in an angry way, but getting the others attention). Even when we appeared round the corner in view, one of them didn't stop shouting down to the other.
Now, I am not a person that moans about things (ever) however I was really disappointed with our suite. The Shire Inns website details their suites as "our exclusive suites have been designed to offer you unadulterated style, ample space and luxurious surroundings. Exquisitely appointed, our generous suites all offer king-size beds and a tranquil environment where privacy prevails amidst impeccable attention to detail". Our suite wasn't well appointed (it overlooked the rear car park and you could hear the roar of the A14 outside. I was looking for the attention to detail when I noticed the dust collected on the lamps and table. Maybe I was being too finicky but I was disappointed. So I looked at the fridge for the complimentary alcoholic and soft drinks. 2 bottles of Peroni, 2 small bottles of diet coke, 2 orange juices a half size bottle of Chardonnay and a bottle of water. This was promising, so I looked at my booking form to confirm what else I had paid for; Complimentary satellite TV (isn't this a given in most 4* hotels?), Complimentary wi fi (could not get this in our room (both O2), only in the bar area), Bose CD player (looked for this everywhere but could not find it), Fridge stocked with lager, wine and soft drinks (yes, great!), Nespresso coffee making machine (yes, good), fresh fruit (if you consider 3 apples, one of which had seen better days and was wrinkly), Bvlgari toiletries (nope, had ESPA toiletries), Complimentary use of extensive spa which features a 13m pool, spa pool, sauna, steam room and fully equipped gymnasium (yes, we used these facilities, but were not overwhelmed especially as pool was full of kids that were being thrown around by parents), Complimentary car parking (yes, however the hotel is located in a business park and I understand all parking at the hotel is complimentary?). I felt the Suite Experience severely lacked in what was sold to me.
I was dreading dinner at this point. However, we went to the bar (where the wedding party guests were in full swing at the bar - no room to sit). We were served quickly and whilst the barman was getting our drinks, we were asked 3 other times if we were being served. This was the service I thought we were to receive everywhere in the hotel.
After being seated for dinner, our orders were taken and drinks bought out. Our waitress (and in fact all the restaurant staff) were lovely and we never waited too long for anything in the restaurant. The food was delicious and I chose one of the specials for the night, we both cleared our plates on every course. This was the highlight of our stay. The rating awarded to this hotel is entirely due to the restaurant. Our waitress had to go and ask about my prepayment for dinner as neither of us knew what it meant (if this had been explained at check in, it would have eased any concerns I had).
Around 1am we heard people in the corridor, we weren't sure if these were part of the wedding party or other guests, but this didn't match up to our "tranquil environment" we were hoping for.
I think the saddest part of the whole stay was the breakfast, which we paid for room service. Cornflakes (which were soggy as the milk had already been poured in), no teas or coffee or orange juice and finally, a sausage/bacon and egg bagel as our cooked breakfast. If i had wanted this kind of breakfast I would have gone to Macdonalds. We didn't eat it all, and quickly packed and checked out.
I was waiting for the Receptionist to ask us how our stay was, so I could point out these problems, but she didn't... and we didn't have the heart or inclination to do so, so we paid up (a whopping £315ish for one night).
Very disappointed with this 4* hotel (in comparison, see my review of Macdonald Windsor, another 4* hotel on a completely different level to this one). The best thing about this hotel is the restaurant.
Based on my experience here, I wouldn't recommend this hotel nor would I stay here again, and I am sorry to say that as you will see from all of my previous reviews, I always try to make the best, but this hotel really let us down, on its service (not inc the bar or restaurant) and on the package we received.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- The 4 star Kettering Park Hotel and Spa has a cosy atmosphere that'll help you feel at home from the moment you walk through the doors. Located just off the A14 - Kettering is within easy reach of most of the UK's population - with easy access from the M1, M6 and A1. ... more less
- Reservation Options:
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- Also Known As:
- Kettering Park Hotel Kettering