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“A real disappointment”
2 of 5 bubbles Review of Woodwick House

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Woodwick House
Ranked #1 of 1 Hotels in Evie
Aberdeen, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
66 reviews
29 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 210 helpful votes
“A real disappointment”
Reviewed 28 August 2012

Woodwick House's website describes itself as being "Fine accomodation in Orkney's West Mainland". My husband booked one night her in August. He paid up front but was happy with his choice because the website looked so lovely.
Sadly, our visit did not match the expectations we had from the website. We paid a lot of money for Room 1 which the gentleman who met us described as the best room in the house.
Upon returning from our trip, my husband wrote to the person who he had booked the room through who said "customer care and attention to detail is of a a high priority for us and naturally we are distressed that you had such a disappointing experience." We were also told that the manager had been called away on personal business. I have enclosed some photos of what we found to illustrate the customer care and attention to detail we experienced.
I would suggest that maybe a closer eye to detail and more on hand involvement may help improve what is currently a HUGE disappointment into something which might actually gain it tourist board involvement (We spoke to the tourist board who confirmed that they did not deal with Woodwick House.) A starting point for any future for Woodwick House.

Room Tip: Spend your money else where.
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  • Stayed August 2012, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
10 Thank smileme2you
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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55 reviews from our community

Traveller rating
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    9
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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    3.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    3 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    3.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    3 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    3 of 5 bubbles
Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (6)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • Italian first
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English first
Kirriemuir
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
Reviewed 8 August 2012

Once upon a time locals told me, this was the place to be. A first class restaurant, musical evenings in the large first floor room, and pleasant gardens to walk in.

Not any more. When we stayed in July, we found a hotel that had been stripped of its stars ( unknown to us) and no permanent staff. The only staff were a man there helping out on a temporary basis, and a local lady doing the cleaning and helping in the restaurant. They were very helpful and could not do enough for us, so made our stay enjoyable.

Our room was the main bedroom and was a good size.. However, both it and the bathroom looked very dated, and need of a refresh. It was described as having 'views over the bay'. That may have been true some years ago, but the house is now surrounded by mature trees, and you could not even see the sea, never mind the bay. All bedlinen and towels were clean, as was the room, and any problem was addresed.

The Gardens can only be be described as neglected. On occasions this is descibed as environmental gardens, but in this case they just looked as though nobody cared.

We dined in a couple of times and the food was very good. The guy cannot be described as a chef, but a good cook. That means he provides food you could expect at home- casseroles, fish pies, etc., but very good. He also does excellent desserts.

The rates being charged here are high compared to what we have seen elsewhere, and we also saw a notice on the front door when we arrived that there was a 3% charge for using credit/debit cards., which we had not been made aware of when booking. We were told this was due to the cost of renting the card machine. Obviously, they have not looked for the best deal. Fortunately, this fee was waived for us.

This House has the potential to be the perfect hideawy place,as it is in such a peaceful location, but not without a proper refurbishment. In its current state, and charging the rates it does, We would find it difficult to recommend, and would certainly not go back.

  • Stayed July 2012, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
5 Thank Peter W
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

Travellers are raving about these Evie hotels

Aberdeen, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
451 reviews
83 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 213 helpful votes
Reviewed 25 July 2012

This was clearly once a delightful large house in a picturesque setting. As others have said, the gardens are very overgrown; to a degree that goes well beyond the "certain state of wildness" referred to in A. Watson's (presumably owner/manager) earlier response.

And it should be clarified that it is not a hotel. It is perhaps best described as a guest house.

We stayed as part of a family group and the house lends itself to that. The bedrooms range in size but all seem reasonably-sized and one certainly couldn't question their cleanliness. Same goes for bed linen, towels, etc.

There is a pleasant 'resident's lounge' - basically the main lounge of the house - which has an extensive collection of books. Great place to gather together at the end of the day.

We understood that there has been some form of problem with managers in recent months. Local gossip suggests that the most recent 'did a bunk'. Whatever, we found some poor bloke left on his own and struggling to cope, with part-time assistance from a local lady, and brought in at short notice to deal with existing reservations. He was doing a first-class job and couldn't have been more friendly or helpful.

We saw a notice on the front door when we arrived advising guests that there would be a 3% charge for the use of credit or debit cards to settle one's bill. There had been no advance warning of this. This is ridiculous, especially in the case of debit cards. The explanation given when we questioned this was that the necessary card readers were being rented from the bank and the bank insisted on the fee. Thankfully, the temporary manager waived the fee.

The cooked breakfasts were excellent and the portions generous. We dined in one night and, again, the food and service was first-rate. However - the food was simple fare. The current Lonely Planet guide refers to "...the courteous hosts do fine three-course dinners..." Be aware that the current manager's culinary skills (breakfast aside) appear to be restricted to shepherd's pie or fish pie. We can confirm that his shepherd's pie is very good but it probably doesn't match most people's understanding of the phrase 'fine dinner'. There was also a very restricted choice of wines available.

At the time of our visit, guests were being charged rates above what we had just paid when staying in a hotel on Orkney earlier the same week. One certainly didn't get hotel-standard amenities, etc. at Woodwick House.

This venue has all the potential to be very comfortable, attractive and what one would want. Unfortunately, given that we live in times when no one wants to waste money or spend more than necessary, I'd think long and hard before I went back. It would, frankly, be too much of a risk. I'd need some reassurance that the House was adequately staffed and resourced and how can one achieve that remotely?

If you have the ability to drop by 'on spec' and check things out before deciding to stay, I'd recommend you do so. You could, like us, have a pleasant stay. If not, then I'd have to suggest you book elsewhere.

Shame - it was obviously once really good. And could be again.

  • Stayed July 2012, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
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    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
Thank aberdeenangler
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Berkshire
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed 15 November 2011

I stayed here for two nights at Easter time, and we were the only guests. The welcome was very warm indeed combined with a comfortable room and the most amazing breakfasts I would recommend to any looking for homely accomodation in Orkney. The walk to the beach at sunset is a must.

  • Stayed April 2011, travelled with friends
    • Value
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Helpful?
1 Thank GndGreen
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Edinburgh, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
14 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 14 helpful votes
Reviewed 5 November 2011

Friends and I were traveling historic scotland for the entire summer until last week. We booked at woodwick house because the photographs and the site sounded amazing. Do not fall for it. The property is very lovely but you can tell that they are in need of a grounds keeper because a lot of things seemed like they were barely kept in a good state. Once you step into the house you are welcomed by the smell of cat urine, should have guessed it after seeing 4 or 5 cats walking around the property before entering.
The room was small and cramped and the bedding smelled as though dozens of sweaty people had slept in it since the last wash. Needless to say we left the hotel after the first night. Luckily we had not paid in advance because I would have abandoned my money if I had to to get away

  • Stayed September 2011, travelled with friends
    • Value
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Helpful?
9 Thank Adam L
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
OrkneyislandWoody, Owner at Woodwick House, responded to this review, 15 November 2011
It is seems incredulous that anybody can claim that any hotel could be the "worst hotel in Orkney" if they have not stayed in all the hotels on the island. They did not bring these problems to the attention of the management at the time of there stay. This looks and feels like a malicious review and can only damage tourism here in Orkney.

I have checked and there is no record of an Adam L ever having stayed at Woodwick House.
There is no record of anyone leaving after one night in September.
I myself have just returned from having stayed at Woodwick.
There were six other people staying all very well pleased with accommodation, cleanliness, food and hospitality. Two of these were a young couple from Italy who wrote an ecstatic note in the visitor’s book.
The present managers have very high standards and I am sure would not ever consider leaving linen on a bed from one guest to another. There are no cats kept there. The bed linen was immaculate and the bathrooms thoroughly cleaned daily. The only thing that can be acknowledged is a certain state of wildness in the grounds, which some find delightful and in keeping with the magical quality of the place, however there are plans, I understand to gently tame a portion to make them more accessible.
A. Watson
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Stroud, United Kingdom
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
Reviewed 31 August 2011

This place is heaven. Quiet, full of character and comfy. Trees, sea at the bottom of the rambling garden, chickens to trip over and good books to delve into. Now run by a delightful very welcoming couple with lots of excellent ideas to make it even better. If we go this way again this is where we will stay.

  • Stayed August 2011, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Sleep Quality
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
3 Thank Annemarierobinson
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Stenness, United Kingdom
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed 8 August 2011

As an Orcadian wedding planner I would like to say that I have just organised a wedding ceremony at Woodwick House on 2nd August and found the new managers (who had just arrived in Orkney) to be very efficient. The bride and groom who had travelled from London with their family did not stay at Woodwick House as by the time they made contact with me to plan their wedding, they had already booked self-catering accommodation elsewhere. Woodwick House is a lovely location for a relaxed wedding ceremony and it was a pleasure to work with John and Sandra.

Stayed August 2011, travelled with family
Helpful?
1 Thank OrkneyWeddings
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Woodwick House

Property: Woodwick House
Address: Woodwick House Woodwick, Evie KW17 2PQ, Scotland
Region: United Kingdom > Scotland > Orkney Islands > Mainland > Evie
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 1 Hotels in Evie
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): £
Number of rooms: 8
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Woodwick House is a warm & welcoming historic country house overlooking the island of Gairsay, offering comfortable accommodation and home cooked food. Set in an extraordinary, peaceful location with bluebell woodland, a cascading burn & a secluded bay on this sheltered part of Orkney, within easy reach of the main historic sites, bird reserves and sandy beaches. Step into a unique and special place and make yourself at home, We love Woodwick’s energy with its sea air and the flowing water with the wind in the trees and bird song. ... more   less 
Also Known As:
Woodwick Hotel Evie
Woodwick House Orkney Islands/Evie

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