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“Great hotel with excellent restaurant”

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Royal Hotel Stornoway
Ranked #3 of 6 Hotels in Stornoway
Birmingham, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
12 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
“Great hotel with excellent restaurant”
Reviewed 31 August 2013

Good quality hotel rooms with excellent food served in the restaurant. Our only slight disappointment was that our room did not look onto the harbour and we were next to the extractor fan going from the kitchen which was a bit noisy.

Room Tip: Ask for a room facing the harbour!
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  • Stayed August 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
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    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
Thank Ceri J
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Alexander M, General Manager at Royal Hotel Stornoway, responded to this review, 3 February 2014
Thank you for your review. It’s good to know that, in the main, we were able to provide you with a good stay.

It’s a shame that the harbour may only be viewed from front rooms, so we would agree with you that, if you want to be sure of the view, please book as early as possible, requesting a front facing room.

I hope that we may have the opportunity to welcome you back at some time in the future.
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269 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
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  • Sleep Quality
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Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (87)
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English first
Inverness
Level Contributor
8 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
Reviewed 27 August 2013

Stayed at Royal Hotel for a couple of nights. Booked a single room, requesting a harbour view. All single rooms at back of hotel, but as there was availability, I was given a room at the front with great view of harbour and castle. All staff I came into contact with were very friendly and helpful. Good breadfast, served in lovely venue of Boatshed restaurant. Dinner menus for both Boatshed and cafe bar HS1 wide-ranging - seafood pasta excellent. Highly recommend and will certainly revisit.

Room Tip: Rooms at front have lovely views of harbour and castle.
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  • Stayed August 2013, travelled solo
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Helpful?
Thank MairiInverness
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
London
Level Contributor
325 reviews
52 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 211 helpful votes
Reviewed 21 August 2013

We stayed in the Royal Hotel for 1 night. It's a really sweet oldie worldie hotel and our room on the first floor had a great view facing the harbour and castle. The room was very large and comfortable with excellent Wifi. The only slight drawback was the bathroom which was very small and would have benefited from a shelf or two. There was absolutely nowhere to put our toothbrush, toothpaste, shaver and toiletries. Good breakfast with lots of cooked options. We also had lunch in the hotel's cafe and dinner in their restaurant The Boat-shed. In both cases the food was very fresh and tasty. If you eat early at the Boat-shed there is a really good discount. We found everyone in the hotel extremely friendly and helpful.
The best meal I had in Stornaway was in the Solas restaurant which is in the Cabarfeidh Hotel. My husband's favourite restaurant was Digby Chic, both places were very good
If you like walking there is a beautiful circular river walk in the castle grounds (about 4 miles) and you can end up in the Woodlands Centre for a cup of tea and a delicious scone or cake.

Room Tip: Try and get a room facing the harbour as the view is great
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  • Stayed August 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank multitrippers
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Alexander M, General Manager at Royal Hotel Stornoway, responded to this review, 3 February 2014
Thank you for posting your review of the Royal. It’s lovely to see that you clearly enjoyed your stay.

The en-suite shower rooms at the front of the hotel do vary in size, as we have had to make the best of spaces created 150 years ago, balancing the guests’ desire for spacious bedrooms with bathroom requirements that would have been unheard of when the hotel was built in the mid 1800s! We'll look at the possibility of increasing shelf space in the en-suite shower rooms.

If TripAdvisor members have particular wishes, then we suggest a conversation about them with our receptionist, when booking, may result in us being able to pick just the right room to satisfy those wishes.

As a footnote to your comment about the four mile walk around the Castle Grounds, I would like to make it clear that, for less energetic guests, there are also several walks that include the river waterfalls and are a good deal shorter.

I hope that we may have the opportunity to welcome you back at some time in the future.
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Level Contributor
43 reviews
16 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 27 helpful votes
Reviewed 16 August 2013 via mobile

We stayed here as part of our honeymoon. We found the hotel accomodating and friendly in every respect. The bar staff have a very extensive knowledge of their products. We were given complimentary champagne on our first evening as congratulations from the hotel. On going out on Sunday we asked for packed lunches. We chose the contents and were given them free. All staff were courteous and friendly. We had a great time at the hotel. Would recommend it to anyone. The seafarers restaurant is an experience in itself!!

  • Stayed July 2013
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank angi01
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
edinburgh
Level Contributor
7 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 11 helpful votes
Reviewed 11 August 2013

Stayed here for two nights . Room was rather bijou and was a bit noisy as over the kitchen but clean and had a comfortable bed. what made me give it the "very good" was the restaurant. The Boatshed. Great food , very well presented and at a fabulous price of £18 for two courses as the early bird option. Would definitely stay here again and would recommend a visit to the Boatshed even if you are not staying.

  • Stayed August 2013, travelled on business
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
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    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
Thank para1Edinburgh
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Alexander M, General Manager at Royal Hotel Stornoway, responded to this review, 3 February 2014
Thank you for posting your review of the Royal. We’re happy to know that you enjoyed your stay with us.

We would agree that our single rooms, while not being the smallest in the world, are accurately described as bijou – unfortunately, fitting en-suite bath and/or shower rooms into a building that’s over 150 years old required some compromises here and there.

However, in quieter periods when we are not fully booked, we will normally try to find a room upgrade (on arrival) for guests with single room bookings.
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Nottingham, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
55 reviews
21 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 37 helpful votes
Reviewed 31 July 2013

The Royal is situated alongside Stornoway harbour in the centre of the capital of the Outer Hebrides. Aithough the hotel is steeped in history, the facilities in the hotel are modern. Many traditional features are retained in the rooms, and the hotel.

Our room faced the harbour and the castle and was noisy during the day with traffic on the road and in the harbour. Don't let this put you off as the noise quietened down considerably after 10 pm, and it didn't disturb our sleep.

The breakfast was filling and offered several choices.The hotel was clean and the staff were helpful and friendly.

Room Tip: Harbour view rooms are excellent, but be prepared for some noise during the day.
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  • Stayed July 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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    • Sleep Quality
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Helpful?
1 Thank AlanRowley
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Nottingham, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
14 reviews
9 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
Reviewed 15 July 2013

It is difficult to find a restaurant in Stornoway on a Sunday so we booked a table at the Royal for 7.30.

We ordered prawn cocktail and leg of lamb. After 10 minutes the waitress returned to inform us that they had run out of prawn cocktails so, as there was nothing much else on the menu that appealed to us, we agreed to wait for the lamb. After a further 10 minutes the restaurant managed came up and told us that they had also run out of lamb. We then asked whether there was anything on the menu that they did have and were told that we could have fish and chips or belly pork. These were passable, but not what we wanted. Finally we thought we would have an ice cream, as surely they would have that in stock, but no, there was none left either.

We were asked if "everything was all right with our meal" and I firmly declared that their catering was totally incompetent, and for goodness' sake why didn't they store something in the freezer? The manager said that, as a gesture, he would not charge us for our drinks, but we had not had any anyway!

If any one does wish to try this restaurant in future, I recommend arrival no later than 6.00 and a clear question as to what might be available before making a commitment.

This was a ghastly experience.

  • Stayed July 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank Darrell F
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Alexander M, General Manager at Royal Hotel Stornoway, responded to this review, 3 February 2014
Thank you for your visit to HS-1 café bar. I’m sorry that it was not a happy experience for you and will attempt to explain some of the difficulties that occur on a couple of Sundays a year.

I am assuming that your visit was on the same date as your review, Sunday 15th July 2013, at the beginning of the Stornoway Celtic Festival week, which attracts around 15,000 people to attend the Concerts - more than the entire population of the town.

It’s so busy in Festival week that we take in as much extra stock of all the food we can store properly in the limited space we have.

We source as much fresh local produce as we can – that’s one of the keys to providing a good experience. Some food may be suitable for freezing, but our freezer space is also limited.

On the Sundays of festival week, we do the best we can to feed large numbers of extra visitors – as you already noticed, we’re one of very few restaurants open on a Sunday. However, it’s possible for us to run out of some ingredients.

On a weekday, that would not really be a problem. Even in Festival week, we can call the local butcher or shellfish supplier and have fresh stocks in minutes.

On an Isle of Lewis Sunday, however, when even more than the forecast number of visitors have eaten most of the stock, we’re stuck. There are no food shops open. The fishermen do not set out or return on a Sunday. Other than what we can borrow from our ‘sister’ restaurants in town, that are also open on Sunday, we simply cannot replenish stocks until Monday.

I’m sorry, this explanation will not make you feel better about your experience, but it does give credence to your suggestion – if you’re visiting us on Celtic Festival Sunday, please come early for the best variety of menu choices.
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Additional Information about Royal Hotel Stornoway

Property: Royal Hotel Stornoway
Address: 81 Cromwell Street | Stornoway, Isle of lewis, Stornoway HS1 2DG, Scotland
Region: United Kingdom > Scotland > The Hebrides > Outer Hebrides > Lewis and Harris > Isle of Lewis > Stornoway
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #3 of 6 Hotels in Stornoway
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££
Hotel Class:2 star — Royal Hotel Stornoway 2*
Number of rooms: 26
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Stornoway's most historic hotel, the Royal nestles in the heart of Stornoway, beside the marina, where you can relax, enjoy the hotel's cosy character and enjoy dining in our Boatshed Restaurant or in HS1, the town's 1st cafe bar.If on business, you'll probably appreciate free wireless internet access available throughout the hotel.What matters so much more than bricks and mortar, though, is the warmth of the welcome and the friendly, easy service you'll receive - for the Hebrides has a great tradition of hospitality.While the Royal Hotel enjoys a delightful view over the colourful, bustling harbour to the splendour of Lews Castle and its grounds. The town centre is only around 200 metres walk. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Stornoway Royal Hotel
Royal Hotel Stornoway Isle Of Lewis

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