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“Lovely hotel but not for dogs”

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Dunkery Beacon Hotel
Certificate of Excellence
UK
Level 2 Contributor
6 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
“Lovely hotel but not for dogs”
Reviewed 27 October 2013

Had a weekend in a lovely room with wonderful food - breakfasts as well as dinners. Was not a break though as with our dog we were in and out of the hotel as he was only allowed in the lounge area of our bedroom and no where else including the garden. This meant that for toiletting we had to walk him down the road (even in the night! we were also on the second floor so may have disturbed other guests going through doors and him going down the stairs), when we had our meals we had to put him out in the car (at the bottom of the drive in the dark and cold). It was particularly cold and wet when we went and so whenever he needed to go out we had to get dressed into winter clothing and muddy boots - a shame when we were dressed for dinner and wanting to then relax. Just not a good venue if you want to go away with your dog. We go on 3 or 4 weekend breaks every winter to get through the miserable weather period and to enjoy walks and time with our dog and therefore can justify our opinion of this not being a good place to stay with a dog. However, we would highly recommend it for stays without your pets, plus the food was outstanding!

  • Stayed November 2012, travelled with family
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Helpful?
2 Thank lslfan
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
John B, Owner at Dunkery Beacon Hotel, responded to this review, 28 October 2013
It was always a concern that when providing the great standard of food & accommodation to our guests that dog owners should also be welcomed, but with a view that the non dog owners be given equal consideration. This is why the two rooms made available to dog owners are the two largest suites, both with their own lounge and located as close to the front door as possible. One of these suites is three meters from the front door and the second room (the room you stayed in) on the First Floor is the next closest to the front door, so eliminating the disturbance to any other guests when your dog does to need to go out.
Other than their proximity to the front door, the reason these two rooms are used for dog owners is that they each have their own lounge for you to share the company of your dog in. As not all our guests are pet lovers and do indeed experience allergies to certain animals, we keep the guest lounge and dining room pet free.

Our pet owners policy is sent out to every guest booking a room with their dog and gives full details of our expectation from the dog owners and also an opportunity to change your mind if you do not agree with these policies.
Not allowing your dog to be left in a strange room on its own is an industry standard policy and one that the majority of guest houses and hotels will stipulate. We will however allow your dog to be left in the room if you provide a travel cage for the duration of your absence.

As a country hotel in the UK, I think it is fair to say that some rain, mud and cool temperatures can be expected and walking your dog in these conditions is all part of the fun of being a dog owner.
The field we ask dog owners to use is approx fifty feet from the drive and, although very dark at night, is no darker than the lawn, which unfortunately does get used as a toilet from time to time, without the dog mess being retrieved by the owners. As the garden is particularly well planted, we do get guests exploring and even lying out on the lawn to relax.

We are very welcoming of dogs and are happy you enjoyed the food and accommodation, but we feel that the lengths we go to in order to provide outstanding quality to both dog and non dog owners is not something we will compromise on and our dog owning guests to date have appreciated this.
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English first
Munich, Germany
Level 1 Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
Reviewed 19 October 2013

We, a family of four, stayed in the Dunkery Beacon Hotel for a full week this August and had an absolutely superb holiday there. Not only is the house perfectly located to explore the greatnesses of West Somerset and North Devon, hiking along the coastal path or over the hills and the meadows of Exmoor, but the two hotel owners, Jane and John, and their co-worker, Misa, are so warm and nice. Returning in the evening to the hotel was more like returning to family and friends, rather than to just an accommodation. And we will never forget sitting with John late at night in front of the hotel, being in the middle of a grand dark sky reserve and experiencing the wonders of the Earth going through the stream of debris called the Perseid cloud: We counted 20 shooting stars in just one hour. Awesome!

  • Stayed August 2013, travelled with family
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Helpful?
1 Thank weltenbummler777777
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
John B, Owner at Dunkery Beacon Hotel, responded to this review, 28 October 2013
It is alway a great treat for us when we have a family stay for more than just a short break as it gives us more time to get to know them and they become part of our family.
We are so lucky to be in the middle of the Dark sky Reserve, as when we do get clear nights, the view of the stars is just incredible.
It was also fortuitous that your stay coincided with the Perseid meteor shower, so I was more than happy to enjoy the light show with more affable company than the badgers!
This meteor shower is an annual event so we fully expect to see you again next year!!

Best Wishes

John & Jane
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Leintwardine
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed 2 October 2013

I can only endorse the comments of other reviewers here. The hotel is beautifully situated and its internal décor is elegant and relaxed: the lounge and dining room are particularly welcoming. Jane and John made us feel at home immediately, and John's cooking alone was worth the journey. Jane's experience in the wine trade was evident in the wine list as well as in the maps of wine regions adorning the walls. The enthusiasm of the owners was evident at every turn, and we've already recommended the hotel to members of our family.

Room Tip: It would be hard to imagine one that isn't good!
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  • Stayed September 2013, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
1 Thank Allan G
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
John B, Owner at Dunkery Beacon Hotel, responded to this review, 10 October 2013
Thank you for taking time to post a review.
As this is not only our business, but our home, we feel like we are having lots of freinds and relatives over to stay, so we do enjoy meeting new guests and making sure that they are well fed and watered before going out to explore the beautiful countryside of Exmoor.
Please thank your freinds for their recommendation and thank you in anticipation of having your freinds and relatives here to stay.
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Northampton, United Kingdom
Level 4 Contributor
38 reviews
9 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
Reviewed 1 October 2013 via mobile

We chose this country house based on recommendations from other guests. What a find it surpassed our expectations. John, Jane and Misha were so friendly and nothing was too much trouble, even down to preparing a packed lunch. John's food was delicious and well presented with some exciting flavours using many local products. the full english breakfast set you for the day. Janes wine expertise was obvious in the small but very select wines available, all at reasonable prices. The whole building was very clean and the bed linen was crisp and white.
We stayed in the second floor king suite which had superb views over Exmoor and one evening we even saw a badger making its way up the front drive.
A haven of peace to which we will return and next time it's the four poster just for the views.

  • Stayed September 2013
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Helpful?
Thank mgtdsports
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
John B, Owner at Dunkery Beacon Hotel, responded to this review, 28 October 2013
Thank you for your thoughtful review. One of the biggest selling points when we bought the hotel was its location which we agree is stunning.
The challenge came when we saw that the standards inside needed to match the wow factor the scenery provides and gauging the responses, I think we are getting there.
We both enjoy what we do here and it makes it easier to continue to provide great food, wine and accommodation when we read what you have to say. So thank you again. See you soon.
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Surrey
Level 2 Contributor
7 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
Reviewed 1 October 2013

We have written about the Dunkery Beacon Hotel before and we really loved it. Now under new ownership, it is even better. Just as spectacular a location of course and just as comfortable, but two areas of significant improvement. The redecoration has made it bright, sharp and very smart, even more welcoming. Also new owners now do evening meals and very good they are too.

This has always been one of our favourite places to stay and it is now better than ever, brilliant.

  • Stayed September 2013, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
Thank RoyandSandy
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
John B, Manager at Dunkery Beacon Hotel, responded to this review, 10 October 2013
Thank you for your review and returning to the hotel a second time.
Although our first year in this business faced some great challenges such as the weather and financial climate, we considered it a great opportunity to reinvigorate all the guest areas and make a break with us one to remember.
All my years in somebody elses kitchen are now being rewarded as I now have my own in which to show off the many years experience I have gained both abroad and in the UK.
So thank you for recognizing our hard work and commitment to offering a truly unique experience on Exmoor.
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Alton, United Kingdom
Level 6 Contributor
101 reviews
30 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 55 helpful votes
Reviewed 22 September 2013

We stayed for two nights so that we could explore Exmoor and this hotel is in a beautiful location with lovely views. The accommodation, food and service were faultless. It is more like a large country house than a hotel and it is run in that manner. The lounge is charming, and candle lit at night. We are foodies and we found the food amazingly good. The owners should enter one of the food award schemes where they would score highly. The rooms were spotless and nothing was too much trouble. Micha, the waitress, couldn't have been more helpful and always with a smile on her face. We have no hesitation in recommending this place, you will love it.

Stayed September 2013, travelled as a couple
Helpful?
Thank AltonBob
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
John B, Owner at Dunkery Beacon Hotel, responded to this review, 24 September 2013
This summer has seen a much valued increase in guests staying and dining at our country house and now we are coming to the end of the busy period, it is very uplifting to hear that our guests are continuing to appreciate the level of accommodation provided and the food I prepare on a daily basis.

We will be investigating the numerous food award schemes, but the feedback we get from both yourself and other guests will take some beating, so thank you.

As ever, we will continue with our efforts to create new delights in the kitchen and improve upon the great standards offered in the bedrooms and hopefully, we will see you return for more gastronomic treats.
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Brighton, United Kingdom
Level 4 Contributor
41 reviews
12 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 21 helpful votes
Reviewed 15 September 2013

A delightful country hotel. My partner, who is disabled, enjoyed room 5 on the ground floor. This room had the benefit of a separate sitting room from the bedroom. The food was very good and the owners and staff were very attentive and obliging. I would recommend a stay at this hotel. It might help other travellers to mention that orders for dinner are taken after breakfast so if you are not arriving until later in the day and would like an evening meal, a telephone call around 9.00am., would be an idea.

Room Tip: I have already commented on room 5
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  • Stayed September 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
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Helpful?
Thank trevor p
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
John B, Owner at Dunkery Beacon Hotel, responded to this review, 24 September 2013
Many thanks for your kind review and apologies for the delay in our reply - it's been quite a hectic time over the last few weeks! We're very glad you and your partner enjoyed your stay with us and that our ground floor letting room was suitable for your requirements.

We're also delighted you chose to dine with us over 2 nights. We do as standard practice email the menu through to guests who have pre-booked dinner for the night of their arrival, so they can make choices in advance of the day rather than having to ring in the morning. I manage the kitchen on my own and prepare everything from scratch on the day, so a pre-order is much appreciated.

As you have discovered, our beds are so comfortable that guests often struggle to part company with them in the morning and, more often than not, we are still in the middle of serving breakfast at 9am, so a slightly later morning call would be welcome.

Best regards,

John
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Additional Information about Dunkery Beacon Hotel

Property: Dunkery Beacon Hotel
Address: Dunkery Beacon Hotel Near Dunster | Somerset, Wootton Courtenay, Exmoor National Park TA24 8RH, England
Region: United Kingdom > England > Exmoor National Park > Wootton Courtenay
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free Parking Restaurant Suites
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 1 Hotels in Wootton Courtenay
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): £
Hotel Class:4 star — Dunkery Beacon Hotel 4*
Number of rooms: 8
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
A wonderful former Edwardian hunting lodge offering luxury accommodation, gourmet dining (Wed - Sat) and safe, spacious off road parking.Ideally situated for scenic country drives across Exmoor and along the coast.Seven individually decorated en-suite rooms, plus one with private bathroom, all with breathtaking views. Group bookings welcome. Children 10 years of age and over welcome. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Dunkery Beacon Exmoor
Hotel Dunkery Beacon

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