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“The best place to stay in Tasmania”
Review of Hawley House

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Hawley House
Ranked #5 of 14 Devonport B&B and Inns
Hobart, Tasmania, Australia
Level Contributor
9 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
“The best place to stay in Tasmania”
Reviewed 6 February 2014

I travel Tasmania as a sales rep and when I head for the NorthWest it is the only place I stay.
Location is stunning, the gardens are sensational and natural. The wildlife thrives throughout the property. Service is fantastic, not overbearing and poncy but genuine, Being a vegan my dietary needs are more complicated than most. Not only did the kitchen oblige, they did it with enthusiasm.
The beach is a few minutes away, shopping centre very close.
The rooms are comfortable and the only problem I encountered was having to leave.
For those who like five star accomodation in sanatised, sterile surrounds,with staff whose smiles are teeth deep, then Hawley is not for you.
It is a wonderful place to stay for those who apreciate a wonderful location, fabulous surrounds and a garden that has an incredible amount of man hours in it's creation and maintenance.
If Hawley cannot please you, then you are truly hard to please.

  • Stayed November 2013, travelled solo
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank Terry C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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103 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
  • Sleep Quality
  • Rooms
  • Service
  • Value
  • Cleanliness
Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (21)
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English first
Ramsla
Level Contributor
6 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviewed 26 January 2014 via mobile

On my arrival at Hawley House I was impressed by the outstanding beauty of the garden- and pond system around the house.

The view over the beach nearby is fantastic.

The personal charm of this place is unique and I'd recommend to stay there, at least to enjoy one of their tasty dinners in the cosy atmosphere of the dining room.

Thank you for the wonderful experience. I'd definitely stay here again.

Stayed January 2014, travelled with friends
Helpful?
Thank clarahopfgarten
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Paris, France
Level Contributor
4 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
Reviewed 13 January 2014

I had a wonderful time at Hawley house, my room had beautiful antiques furniture and I love the style of this historic house. The garden was amazing with ponds and flowers blooming everywhere, I had a great view over a small lake and the ocean from my room. Another highlight of my stay was the dinner in the elegant dining room, it was the best food I had so far in Tasmania! Everything was perfectly cooked and decorated with fresh herbs and flowers from the garden. The service was fantastic, I asked about the things to do around and where to see the penguins and they were very helpful. I stayed for one night only and I wish I stayed longer, this is definitely a great place to relax, enjoy good food and wine!

Stayed January 2014, travelled with friends
Helpful?
1 Thank Aude D
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
hawleyh, Owner at Hawley House, responded to this review, 18 January 2014
Thankyou for your wonderful review. It is great to hear that you enjoyed your stay and the idiosyncratic family atmosphere, penguins and heritage house and gardens to the full during your short visit.
We hope to see you again!
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Adelaide, Australia
Level Contributor
3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
Reviewed 12 January 2014

We stayed at Hawley House because I prefer to book period accommodation whenever possible. I enjoyed the opportunity to mix with other guests at drinks, and the evening meal was excellent.
I rarely find the small quirks or the occasional inconvenience associated with heritage accommodation a problem. However, I feel that this accommodation needs improved maintenance to warrant the high price. The stable room was dusty and in need of a thorough spring clean to remove thick dust on some fittings and soft furnishings, and to clean edges and corners of floors. Only the bathroom window could be opened; there was no screen in the other window (which was thick with cobwebs).
The spa bath was a good size, but the shower curtain so thick that showering took place in the half dark. The power point was badly positioned so that the cord for the hairdryer was not long enough to reach the mirror. There were no tissues but the staff quickly obliged when asked.
The television reception was so poor on all channels that we gave up using it. Noise travelled from the neighbouring rooms and stairwell; heavy snoring was clearly audible from an adjacent room.
The garden is attractive and unusual. The creeper on the stables is beautiful, but cracks in stonework boxes they are growing in detract from it. The lawn edges desperately need attention to prevent the kikuyu grass rampaging into the lovely garden beds.
This accommodation could be outstanding with a some more work and attention to detail.

  • Stayed January 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
4 Thank GMM760
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
hawleyh, Owner at Hawley House, responded to this review, 18 January 2014
It is good to hear that the dinner was excellent, and the company was enjoyable, and that the garden was attractive and unusual.
Other points raised here are somewhat perplexing and verging on petty
- these guests asked for a new box of tissues as they had emptied their first box overnight, which was given immediately when asked at breakfast.
- there is a functioning halogen light located directly above the spa, no-one has ever said the bathroom was too dark in our spa rooms, the shower curtain is standard.
- there is a power point for a hairdryer beside the bathroom mirror in every room.
- the rooms are thoroughly aired and dusted, and have been fully booked for the last few weeks, so certainly have not had any chance to accumulate dust (obviously we vacuum and dust daily)
- there are two opening windows and double french doors for this room.
- the spa room has brick 50cm thick whitewashed walls on four sides, and is as soundproof as any room anywhere.
- there are new digital Televisions in every room. we cannot control reception but generally there are no issues in this area. We also have over 100 DVDs in our library which we encourage guests to use for free.
- we are constantly attending to mowing lawns and edging etc, - we do not have rampaging grass. the original standstone planter boxes may have cracks but that is part of their charm.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Canberra, Australia
Level Contributor
14 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
Reviewed 12 January 2014

I couldn't agree with the review below more. Find somewhere else to stay. The place looked great online, but we were disappointed upon arrival. Like the prior review, we were made to feel like an inconvenience from the moment we arrived. The lady that checked us in made it clear that we weren't her priority, and seemed annoyed when I had questions about the area. How dare I trouble her so! Customer service is definitely not a priority at Hawley House. This is not just apparent in the face to face service, but also in the passive agressive signage you'll find all over your room.

The best part of the house is the exterior, it looks really great. However, upon entering our room, like the previous guest, we found it to be shabby. The furniture is old and has clearly seen better days. The bathroom is not terrific. There is no shower curtain or barrier around the shower, which means water gets all over the toilet and all over the bathroom in general. I would expect this if I was staying at a caravan park, but not when I was paying a premium price for BnB accomodation.

I considered sleeping in the car, because I was concerned that the bed was so old it might give me bed bugs. I kept waking up thinking I was being bitten. I was already certain that the room was plagued with creepy crawlies because of the can of insect spray that was left there for us.

If it wasn't school holidays, and if we hadn't arrived so late in the day, I'm sure I would have investigated finding accomodation elsewhere.

Also, it is clear that the owners are only interested in making a profit. From our arrival, we were repeatedly told we needed to let them know if we were going to be there for dinner. No details of the dinner were provided or the price. Upon asking these impertinent questions, we were quickly flashed a menu and told that 3 courses would be $62 dollars each. A total rip off I think, given the quality of every thing else on the property. We went down to the local shops and had a meal instead.

My partner is allergic to gluten and had advised the property of this on booking. He sought to ensure the owners knew this the evening prior to breakfast. He was told this hadn't come through, and that there wouldn't probably be some fruit and maybe some yoghurt he could eat. Hardly what you've expect of a bed and BREAKFAST establishment. In the morning, he ate just this. However, upon checking out was told that they had prepared some gluten free bread, but weren't sure who to give it to. It wouldn't have been hard for them to find out, or even ask the guests, but they didn't do this. This seems to be the standard sloppy approach of Hawley House.
Also, despite the fact it is a BnB, don't expect a cooked breakfast in the morning - that will cost you extra.
Summary: Hawley house is run down and is to be avoided. The owners aren't interested in customer service or the quality of establishment they provide. You won't enjoy your stay here, and in fact, you'll be made to feel like an inconvenience.

Room Tip: Find a room somewhere else
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  • Stayed January 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Sarah D
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
hawleyh, Owner at Hawley House, responded to this review, 13 January 2014
There are such large number of statements in this review which are absolutely not true, it is hard to know where to start with a response!
1. These guests specifically booked a 'disabled access' room, for no apparent reason. Clearly on arrival they had no need for a wheelchair accessible bathroom however at that stage we were fully booked so there was no option to offer an alternative. The room has new mattress, tea and coffee, air freshener and amongst other things flyspray (we do not make a feature of insect spray, and no-one has taken offence to that before!). The ONLY sign in the room asks guests not to use facewashers for makeup.
2. Dinner is offered as a dining experience. Prices and sample menus are clearly stated on our website, currently $50 for entree and main course, optional dessert $12. We always ask guests to let us know if they would like to eat in so we can prepare accordingly (this has nothing to do with profits, but is common sense!).
3. These guests asked many questions at checkin about penguin watching, which was given in great detail. They were also lent good-naturedly a personal headtorch for that purpose (failed to mention in their review) . In the midst of serving dinner, they telephoned from the penguin viewing to ask many more questions about penguins from the viewing area, obviously at that stage we were very busy in kitchen, not surprisingly that is inconvenient.
4. at 7pm we were asked what was gluten free for breakfast. There was no prior mention of GF requirements on their booking, or at checkin. We cater for all dietary requirements with prior notice, but this is very late notice when we are serving dinner. Late that night we did make time to cook fresh GF bread. At breakfast, there were different staff who asked every person in the dining room whether they were GF with no success. why they didn't answer 'yes' to that question at the time remains a mystery. Also we make clear that cooked breakfast is a modest $12 extra if desired. We include complimentary continental breakfast, despite the fact that we do not advertise anywhere as a 'BnB'.
On the issue of the room furnishings - each room is individually appointed with fresh flowers, original art, a solid teak bed frame, hardwood furniture and of course, freshly laundered linen.
It is disappointing that we weren't able to appease these guests, but the string of 'issues' were out of our control in this instance. We give personal, friendly service (as found by most reviewers here), and will continue to do so to reasonable people.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Hobart, Australia
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed 9 January 2014

Stayed there one night Jan'14. Was very disappointed. Wasn't made that welcome, felt like we were an inconvenience being there. You pay a premiun price for what I would call poor service. They seem to trading under what once was a good name, not now though. The place is run down & the service definitely not up to scratch. Garden is run down, wasn't sure if the stairs to the roof were going to hold my weight. It was probably once a nice place that may have commanded a premium price. I think you could do a lot better finding accommodation else where.

Room Tip: Find one else where !
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  • Stayed January 2014, travelled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank Mark R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
hawleyh, Owner at Hawley House, responded to this review, 13 January 2014
We cannot place who these guests are, as we have only had wonderful company over this busy period. It is offensive to be attacked for service and property management. Thankfully most reviewers here appreciate our style. The house is a heritage listed, family owned property, which is exactly as it is advertised. In the last month alone, the house and garden have been featured in Belle magazine, Virgin Australia inflight magazine, and been featured as one of the best coastal gardens in Australia in the book 'Coastal Gardens'. Naturally, not every establishment is everyone's cup of tea, but we take pride in what we do and we are sorry that this guest did not approach us during their stay. We would have aimed to please them.
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Brisbane, Australia
Level Contributor
13 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
Reviewed 6 January 2014 via mobile

Our stay over two days was an unexpected delight. The family looked after our needs and the house batted back the elements, while we took advantage of the rare and remote place on the peninsula to rest and recuperate.

Unfortunately one of us came down with a horrid cold picked up from MONA the previous week, but if you have to have a sore throat the six thirty drinks was a place where you can sip on Hellyers whiskey and feel a little more prepared for the wonderful tastes of the evening dinner, ostensibly prepared by Marc, but behind the scenes prepared, served, cleaned up and stowed, by all of the family and the garnered help.

There's is a big menu for a normally little crowd, but with enough variety and good tastes to keep you there for at least a week without grumbling, and there was mostly a good list of no garlic choices so those amongst the human family that can't take the effects of sulphur in our foods, found it a pleasurable experience to eat at the white tables in Edwardian style, or what favourably passes for elegance in this outpost of a graceful and more serene time of remembered holidays and happiness,

Being thrown together to dine. wine , and converse with like minded, and/or other minded fellow travellers is a bonus that can only happen because of sixes, and GnT's in the drawing room, and goes to fill the extended dining with interest and revelation. And well received, as it takes time between servings.

We were lucky to sample two rooms. The loft and the stable loft. Both were quiet and charming. The former with fantastic views, a grand space and balcony, the latter , with a cathedral ceiling and crafted decor and dissimilar ambience and decoration in both, which matches the broader experience of the site and stay.

Hawley is a quirky place, but the quirks have the best of intentions,and there is the distinctive feel of the touch of human handicraft in every cranny. The garden is one of those labours of love that exudes the passion of its creator, and there is a respect in the management practice of the current trustees of their fathers, mothers, and grandparents handiwork, and to the generations past.

This is not a place for those looking for formula accommodation. It is hard to measure humanity and perseverance in stars, and old buildings in quality benchmarks. This is place for those who understand people and history, and want to savour restfulness and the senses. Guests who fit the resort rather than the resort that fits the guest.

Stayed January 2014, travelled as a couple
Helpful?
2 Thank john c
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
hawleyh, Owner at Hawley House, responded to this review, 13 January 2014
Thank you for your lovely review. We thoroughly enjoyed your stay here. Good company is always appreciated. It makes us feel like we have friends over for dinner!
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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 Hawley House

Property: Hawley House
Address: Esplanade, Hawley Beach, Devonport, Tasmania 7307, Australia
Region: Australia > Tasmania > Devonport
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Suites Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #5 of 14 B&Bs / Inns in Devonport
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££
Hotel Class:4 star — Hawley House 4*
Number of rooms: 15
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Hawley House (c.1878) offers heritage accommodation in a spectacular seaside location overlooking sandy beaches, set amongst 400 acres of gardens, vineyards and wildlife sanctuary. Hawley unashamedly embraces the patina created by her 130 year history, and the idiosyncrasies of being a family home, not least of which is her unique rooftop bath. Guest rooms feature original artworks and antique furnishings. Centrally located and easily accessible to Devonport, Launceston and Cradle Mountain. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Hawley House Devonport, Tasmania, Australia

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