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“Warm welcome but disappointingly didn't live up to website claims or standard expected from a 4 star guest house”

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La Bonne Vie Guest House
Ranked #4 of 21 St Helier B&B and Inns
Reviewed 6 July 2010

My husband and I have just returned from a week-long stay at La Bonne Vie. We received a warm welcome from Maria but found the experience on the whole was not of a high enough standard to merit the 4* grading, in comparison with other similarly graded establishments at which we have stayed recently, mostly due to minor issues such as attention to detail which could be easily rectified.

The location of the guest house was far enough away from the rabble of the town centre but within easy walking distance and was also near to the beach.

On the plus side, the decor in the bedroom and en-suite was pleasant and we found the Mira shower to be excellent, giving a constant water temperature and flow. The bedding was clean and was even changed mid-week and the bed was reasonably comfortable.

Now onto the (unfortunately) long list of areas for improvement:-

The bedroom was oppressively hot in the middle of the night, making it difficult to sleep even with the window open - I accept this was due to the exceptionally hot weather but feel that a fan could have been provided in the room.

The bedside cabinets were very rickety and the drawers were tiny and virtually unusable. The bed in our room had a metal frame with bits that stuck out the ends, and as there wasn't a great deal of room to maneouvre, I kept walking into them and now have a lovely bruise on my leg as an unwelcome souvenir of the trip!!

Like another reviewer, we found the towels to be old and grey - one of our hand towels even had a hole in it! There's no excuse for this - fluffy white towels are to be expected in this day and age and are reasonably inexpensive to buy at the likes of BHS!! In the same vein, the bath and pedestal mats in our en-suite were rather grubby - it would have been better if the en-suite had vinyl on the floor with a mat provided to use when having a shower, rather than the carpet and mats which were in place.

There was no bin liner in the bin in the en-suite, or sanitary disposal bags available, which was a hygiene issue.

As we were travelling by plane I decided to travel light and did not take my hairdrier, however the hairdrier provided in our bedroom was absolutely filthy - I don't know if something had been spilt on it or whatever but it was absolutely disgusting and icky. I tried to clean it with antibacterial wipes but this didn't shift the grot, I couldn't bear to touch it so ended up having to buy a travel hairdrier from Boots!

The website for the guest house boasts "many comforts awaits you with chocolates, biscuits and home-made fudge to greet you on arrival" and also states that all rooms have internet, toiletries and "small necessity baskets as standard".

We were never offered home made fudge, although there were 2 squares of chocolate in a dish in the bedroom as well as shortbread fingers. There was a bar of soap and small bottles of shower gel and shampoo/conditioner in the en-suite, however I didn't find the "small necessity basket", whatever that was supposed to be! There was no shower cap provided, so it was just as well that I had one in my washbag saved from a previous vacation. My husband requested the password for wi-fi access but the password he was given by the management didn't work, but this was probably not a bad thing in the light of the comment from the other reviewer about the wi-fi access turning out not to be free!!

The website also states "the pretty breakfast room offers you a hearty farmhouse breakfast from it's small A La Carte menu with home-backed muffins as a Sunday speciality".

The breakfast unfortunately did not live up to this reputation and I found the choice woefully lacking. The menu listed grapefruit segments, however we were never offered these, and there was only the choice of cornflakes or muesli. The only hot drinks available were tea or coffee, which was disappointing as I would have preferred fruit or herbal tea. I was disappointed there was no scrambled eggs on the menu as this is the only type of cooked food that I can stomach in the morning, so ended up having croissants most mornings (served with very nice strawberry jam which was a bonus as the marmalade was very bitter). I tried the toast one morning but it was unappeallingly stone cold. It was a pity there were no other non-cooked alternatives such as yogurt or fruit, which I would expect a 4* establishment to offer. The only plus point regarding breakfast was that it was served from 7.45am, allowing us more time to get up and out to explore the island, however you had to be down quick to make the "first sitting" for breakfast as there weren't enough tables for the number of rooms - I noticed that some people had to go away and wait for people to finish before they could get a table. The promised "home-backed muffins" never materialised on the Sunday either...

The television only had about 2 watchable analogue channels - roll on the digital switchover in the Channel Islands!!!!

On the whole I was rather disappointed by this guest house, which I would have rated nearer 3* than 4*. It would have been OK for an overnight or short stay but the irritations started to really grate on me after a couple of days and clouded an otherwise perfect holiday.

  • Stayed: June 2010, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank metalminx
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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72 - 78 of 95 reviews

Reviewed 27 June 2010

Just came back from a 1 week stay at the lovely La Bonne Vie guest house ideally situated at half a minutes walk from Harve Des Pas beach, local restruantes, small stores and 10 minutes away from the town centre.

My partner and I enjoyed a very pleasant and comfortable stay and would highly recommend La Bonne Vie to anyone. It is very cosy and homely and nicely decorated.

When we arrived at La bonne vie we were greeted by the friendly owner who pleasantly welcomed us and showed us to our room. The room was very nice, small but cosy, the furniture and decor were lovely, the beds were very comfortable, the rooms were always well kept and clean and included all the amenities necessary for a 4* B&B.

The Breakfast was fantastic! Compared to other hotels and B&B's I've stayed in, the menu had a vast choice of breakfast and it was always cooked to perfection. The full english breakfast was freshly cooked and had all the full trimmings - egg, bacon, sausages, tomatoes, beans, mushrooms, etc. There was plenty of toast and everything was delicious.

The owner was extremely helpful - from organising island tours to advising us of places of interest which was very useful.

It was a lovely place to stay and we wished we could've stayed longer. We shall definetely be returning next year as it is excellent value for money and we were catered to by the staff throughout our whole stay. It is the best B&B i've stayed at and better than some hotels I've visited. Highly recommendable.

  • Stayed: June 2010, travelled as a couple
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2  Thank Shibby35
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 7 April 2010

Having just stayed in a wonderful, 3-star hotel on the Isle of Guernsey (Hotel de Havelet), we were excited to continue our vacation in the Channel Islands at the 4-star rated La Bonne Vie, but underestimated the fall off from a hotel to a guest house. There was nothing wrong with La Bonne Vie particularly, just a bit disappointing overall. It's located on a nondescript street, but close to the beach to the east (2 blocks) and not too distant a walk to the shopping area to the west (10-15 minutes). The lounge is small, but comfortable. Our room was small, but comfortable. The breakfast room is small, but comfortable. Breakfasts were straightforward, but sufficient. You get the picture. We were VERY disappointed to learn that we had to pay for internet service when their web site (and even their in-room information booklet) advertised free wi-fi).

  • Stayed: April 2010, travelled as a couple
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2  Thank FWBRHB
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 14 March 2010

I have just stayed in this B & B in Jersey. My room was comfortable and clean and had everything I needed. The location is ideal for the centre of St Helier, and also a very short walk to the beach. The owner is quite helpful and friendly and the breakfasts are very nice.
However if you are visiting in the winter as I did the heating in the hotel leaves a lot to be desired. My room had one very small oil filled electric radiator and an electric heated towel rail in the bathroom. This might not have been so bad if it were on all day, but the power supply to it was on a timer, controlled by the owners which meant that it went off around midnight and didn't come back on again until about 6 a.m. On a couple of very cold nights I woke up at 3 o'clock shivering and had to add a blanket to the duvet to keep warm. The hot water in the show was only just hot enough too.
My only other criticism was that the towels are very small, and thin and quite old, which in this day and age seems unneccesary in any hotel or guest house when you can buy perfectly good thick towels for very little.
So I would recommend the hotel because it is clean and in a good location, but beware if you are coming in the winter and like to be toasty warm in your room!

  • Stayed: March 2010, travelled on business
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Thank Brechtiansignage
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 23 February 2010

comftable clean b and b ,not the greatest choice of breakfasts ,but the loverly comfy beds make up for that.it is in a well placed position ,not far from the town and sea i would definetly recommend to anyone

Stayed: February 2010, travelled as a couple
Thank gypseygirl
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 16 January 2010

This guest house is amazing value and I am having a wonderful stay. The rooms are cheerful, cozy and extremely comfortable. The power shower is fantastic and the towels are brilliant. There is a very relaxing lounge with sherry!! Plenty of comfy sofas. The memory foam on the mattresses gives you a great night sleep. There is a good choice of lighting in the rooms, which is easily accessible and there is a radio alarm clock.

The breakfast has a good choice, efficiently served and great coffee.

This B and B is only a 10 minute walk from St Helier taxi is £4.60 from ferryport (Taxi no 888888). It is also very near seafront and easily accessible to the lovely walks around St Clement. Howard Davis Park is a few minutes walk away.

Great Guest House, lovely hosts,very clean and comfortable.

RECOMMENDED 500%

  • Stayed: January 2010, travelled solo
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Thank rachelle68
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 18 October 2009

My husband and I spent 2 nights at La Bonne Vie Guesthouse and we had a brilliant time. The bedroom is very clean and tidy with lovely decor. The guesthouse is about 15 mins walk from the centre and the area is pretty quiet at the night. There are a few restaurants nearby with good food. The best part of the guesthouse?! The memory foam bed and lush duvet...perfect for a cold winter :-)

  • Stayed: October 2009, travelled as a couple
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Thank uwecat
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about La Bonne Vie Guest House

Address: Roseville Street, St Helier JE2 4PL
Region: United Kingdom > Channel Islands > Jersey > St Helier
Hotel Style:
Ranked #4 of 21 B&Bs / Inns in St Helier
Price Range: £60 - £79 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4 star — La Bonne Vie Guest House 4*
Number of rooms: 10
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Also Known As:
La Bonne Vie Guest House Hotel St. Helier
La Bonne Vie Guest House Jersey/St Helier

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