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“Wonderful, peaceful - almost 5/5”
Review of Oakley Hall Hotel

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Oakley Hall Hotel
Ranked #1 of 1 Hotels in Oakley
Certificate of Excellence
Middle England
Level 5 Contributor
60 reviews
40 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 38 helpful votes
“Wonderful, peaceful - almost 5/5”
Reviewed 1 July 2014

As other reviews mention the hotel itself is wonderful. It is beautifully kept, the grounds are immaculate, the rooms cleans and stylish. However it lacks soul! Staff are lack lustre and miss opportunities to make the visit amazing. I stayed two nights and although staff were pleasant I didn't feel the wow of a warm welcome.
Food was ok but nothing the rave about.
Worth taking a run whilst there. They have marked out a good route - but be warned, it is cross country and when I ran it, quite overgrown in places. Be careful out there!

  • Stayed June 2014, travelled on business
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank QueenieRoadie
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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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 (285)
Date | Rating
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English first
Exeter, United Kingdom
Level 4 Contributor
36 reviews
16 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 15 helpful votes
Reviewed 30 June 2014

My wife had booked the hotel as it was close to Thruxton race circuit and was an anniversary surprise.

The hotel itself is wonderful and our suite was fantastic. Arranged over two floors and with a huge bathroom.

The location is great for some lovely local places to eat and everything about the grounds etc was peaceful and looked amazing in the sunshine.

However there were a few things that just let the experience down a bit. The staff showed no warmth and while check in was efficient it felt as if we were just being shipped on. No mention of when breakfast was or where.

At breakfast the staff were similarly stand offish and the whole breakfast experience was disappointing as it had the air of a B&B experience rather than that of an expensive hotel. They ran out of glasses for fruit juice and seemed to need to go and fetch anything that was required - sauces, jams, yoghurt etc.

So for the room and the general appearance - 5/5
For the staff and the experience inside the main building - 3/5

  • Stayed June 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank GaryMcCExe
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
sussex
Level 4 Contributor
32 reviews
20 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 34 helpful votes
Reviewed 28 June 2014

A beautiful building with lots of history. You are in the countryside, but a few miles from the city, and the service is excellent.
We stayed one night in a courtyard room,( they are re-modelling the building!) Food in the restaurant is very good, although for my personal tastes the meat is a bit too rare! and I do not do well cooked, however the desserts are to die for ( as they say).
Rooms are very comfortable and quiet. The grounds are impressive, a lovely way to spend the afternoon before eating in the restaurant. Breakfast covers all requirements, continental as well as cooked, excellent.! A marvellous place to stay, we will go back!

  • Stayed June 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank loftylad
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Lewes, United Kingdom
Level 3 Contributor
19 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
Reviewed 27 June 2014

Having made a very last minute reservation we arrived at the hotel wanting to check in and run to a pre funeral family dinner.The young woman on reception was charming and very helpful,she precessed the check in at the speed of light, was very understanding of the need for a no fuss procedure. The rooms were in the courtyard,very well equipped,very clean and very comfortable.
The only snag with this delightful accommodation was the noisy but brief intrusion of military helicopters late at night and then early in the morning.
Breakfast was very good and again the staff so charming and helpful.
Would love to stay here again.

  • Stayed June 2014, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Mcrbb
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Portsmouth, United Kingdom
Level 1 Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed 24 June 2014

I had been working a lot of hours and had some annual leave to use, so I decided to treat myself to a break at Oakley Hall Hotel. I booked through laterooms.com and found it very reasonable in price, especially as I was staying alone. I emailed the hotel in advance and asked if I could have an early check in and late check out. The staff were very accommodating. Driving up to Oakley Hall Hotel it felt like being in an old fashioned novel. Thankfully it was a beautiful day (stayed mid June 2014). The hotel is stunning and the grounds are well maintained and beautiful. I checked in and the staff at reception were very helpful. I found my room easily. I stayed in The Coach House courtyard executive room. It was easy to find and you had the option of driving round, which I did and the gate was electronically controlled with your room key. The room was lovely. Seeing as the hotel was so old, I had hoped for more of an old country feel. The downstairs had a fridge (which took me a while to find, hidden away) and the bathroom as well as the lounge area and TV. I was very pleased that the milk in the fridge was a proper carton of milk as opposed to UHT. There were lighting switches and air conditioning controls throughout the room which took a few minutes to master but were handy, giving you the option to have various types of lighting. The sofa was not particularly comfortable, it felt very new so a bit stiff. As I said, I think I would have preferred a more traditional feel but that is personal opinion. I explored the upstairs. The same applied, it was lovely and spacious with AC and lighting controls but seemed slightly stiff, almost clinical and not initially overly inviting. The tea and coffee facilities were also hidden so it took some exploring to find but the selection offered was vast and well utilised by myself. It is a shame that the facilities, including the kettle, were all upstairs yet your water and milk were downstairs. I read through the information leaflets and decided to chance a cream tea. Thankfully they did have a spare reservation for that afternoon. The cream tea was faultless and delicious. The service was only average I'm afraid. There were 3 other tables of multiple guests around me and I did feel they were better waited on. I had to wait quite a while for my tea selection to be taken, which then initiated the order for food. However, it was a gorgeous day and I had sat outside with my book so I was happy to take in the atmosphere and read. It may have been inconvenient for someone not so relaxed with time. After the cream tea I had a walk around the grounds and it was very refreshing to be somewhere so beautiful yet only hear the sounds of nature - no cars or traffic noise. The grounds are stunning and worth a stroll around. I went back to my room and spent the rest of the day and evening there. My trip was a treat to myself so I brought a selection of DVDs and books to keep me occupied. The TV system was amazing, it accommodated my blu ray discs, laptop and hard drive! I watched some DVDs in bed throughout the afternoon. The bed could have been more comfortable. If anyone prefers soft pillows I'd suggest brining your own as the ones provided by them were quite firm and not my cup of tea. The bed itself was comfortable, not amazing. The duvet was feather so very inviting and lightweight, perfect as it was warm. It was listed as a king sized bed however it was obvious it was 2 beds connected or pushed together, so as I had the bed to myself it was a little uncomfortable as I could feel where the beds dipped. But as a couple id assume you would have a side each and probably not notice. I decided to order room service for the evening. I watched some television downstairs whilst waiting. The sofas were not well laid out for watching TV however I didn't mind re-arranging slightly. I ordered their Buffalo Burger with wedges, a sticky toffee pudding and a cheese board (I couldn't decide between cheese or dessert so tried both). The food took around 40 minutes which was fine as I ordered before I was hungry. The service was good. I had never ordered room service before and did not think to tip the waiter. Unfortunately the look on his face seemed to be quite apparent he was not impressed! I felt so guilty I called the front desk and asked for more milk (which was needed) and requested he be the one to deliver it. I gave a £10 tip which was over generous as the meal only came to £35 however it eased my guilt. The food unfortunately was average, not as good as the cream tea. The burger was very thick and obviously home made but was a bit dry throughout. The wedges and salad were lovely. The pudding was nice but very sweet. The cheese board was also ok, but the wafers provided were very thin and overpowering in taste which spoilt in my opinion the taste of the cheese. I slept ok in the bed, but probably would have had a better night sleep at home. In the morning I went down for breakfast and had a lovely seat looking at the grounds. I was the only one eating and the waiter was extremely polite and attentive however it did end up feeling a little like I was being watched. The breakfast was lovely, I asked for scrambled eggs with my cooked breakfast but they were the only part I did not enjoy. Checking out was easy.

Overall, I thoroughly enjoyed my overnight stay. The hotel is definitely more suited for couples and I will definitely be brining my boyfriend back. It is extremely romantic. The staff were all polite and attentive. It would be a great choice for a romantic getaway.

Room Tip: The Coach House courtyard suite was lovely and very quiet.
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  • Stayed June 2014, travelled solo
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Review collected in partnership with this hotel

Helpful?
1 Thank HSOnions
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Winchester, United Kingdom
Level 4 Contributor
28 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
Reviewed 22 June 2014

This is the hardest review to write. Last year myself and my wife got married at Oakley Hall and had a wonderful day that was perfect and we left very satisfied giving a glowing review on here. Coming back to celebrate our 1st year anniversary here, however, was very bitter-sweet.

We booked the “romance package” with our wedding co-ordinator who still works there and was very efficient and helped our wedding day turn out perfectly, we assumed that the anniversary would then also hold to similar expectation. For £358 for the two of us to have afternoon tea, dinner (up to £35 per person) and breakfast with a half bottle of champagne in the room, we were looking forward to it and with the standards set on our wedding day, the expectation was high. On booking the package I was told that check in was early at 1pm, check out can be later at 12pm and that 2.30pm was when afternoon tea was available from so I booked it for then so that there would be sufficient gap between that and dinner, which I booked for 8pm.

On arrival, we were greeted by Emma, who was evidently new as she seemed very bewildered by the whole experience of welcoming us. We asked to check in and were told that check in was at 3. Our response was that we were here early due to having afternoon tea but wanted to see if was possible to check in early. She checked her diary and we were indeed booked in for 2.30 for the tea but check in was definitely at 3pm and check out was by 11am with no offer of what was promised with booking the expensive package. With reassurance from her colleague she thought to look on the system to check and our room was, indeed, ready to go so got to check in anyway! This was great as we then had time to drive around to the court yard, drop our bags in the room and still make it for tea by 2.30. We had to ask her when breakfast is served and where it was, something she missed from the usual spiel that receptionists inform guests on check in as standard. All this and still no mention of “happy anniversary” or even a “nice to see you again!” which one could assume would be in the booking notes maybe??

It is a beautiful building with gorgeous rooms; we stayed in room 7, the same as we stayed in for our wedding day. The room was spotless and very well presented with two TVs equipped with blu-ray/DVD players; one up stairs for the bed and one for the mini-lounge area downstairs. The bathroom has heated tile flooring which is a beautiful touch. It came with one large towel, two hand towels, one bath robe and other standard hotel bathroom paraphernalia It was almost set up for single occupancy but due to drying routines we were happy with me having the towel and my wife the robe. Our champagne was set to one side in a bucket of ice with glasses on the side.

We made our way for afternoon tea and hovered outside the restaurant with no staff in sight for 5 minutes until we caught the attention of a busy girl who when we said we were here for afternoon tea at 2.30 came over with the same look of pained grief and bewilderment that Emma had on reception but she quickly managed to throw us a table together in the lovely library room, the room we held our wedding ceremony in. Once they had overcome their shock of our arrival, the staff then bought out some lovely tea and a stand with a bounty of sandwiches, mini scones and sweet treats on. All of which were lovely and left us feeling comfortably full.

With 3 and a half hours until our booked dinner at 8pm we decided to go for a walk around their beautiful grounds and then leisurely get ready for dinner. We came for dinner on time and were asked if we wanted to maybe have drinks and have our order taken in the library and be shown to our table when the food was ready. This was quite nice and a pot of marinated olives and pesto bread sticks were given as a pre-dinner snack. Glad we had them really as we were to be sat there for 45 minutes! I only guess it was because the staff wanted to stagger the orders for the kitchen. The waiting team were brilliant and very proficient. With £35 budget each and the typically expensive yet limited menu choice I went for 3 courses and chose to have the blue cheese ravioli with apple, walnut and salad starter. My wife had a steak for main course and I the lamb with dauphinoise, carrots and broad beans. To finish I had the salted caramel tart and my wife the frozen strawberry shortcake.

The ravioli was odd, the filling was half melted and half cold with the pasta being, therefore barely warm. There was no real sauce to act as a foil for the pasta and it tasted like uncooked fresh pasta, a little bit more than the slightly al dente that it should have been. The flavours were very nice and it looked pretty but maybe pretty for pretty’s sake, lose the pasta and you have a lovely starter. The steak was an average size but not big enough for the price tag and my lamb rack was only two cutlets with a micro-dauphinoise, sweet and sour marinated carrots, broad beans and the tiniest thread of sauce, not too well balanced for amounts but all elements were nice, lamb overcooked but the quality of the meat made up for it.

The piece de résistance was the desserts, my wife’s frozen strawberry parfait was smooth and delightful, only criticism was the shortbread lacked sweetness and that left the salt used in the mix being the predominant flavour when had on its own. My salted caramel tart was lovely without being over-sweet, it was a perfectly balanced dessert and, for the first time in the meal, a decent portion size and the only course worth the money it was said to be worth, the starter and mains were not. I think that due to having 2 rosettes they think its ok to expand the cost of the dishes to the customer and shrink the food, this seems to occur to places who gain a second AA rosette accolade.

If it was just counted on this experience I would give a score 4/5 but as we know they can do better then I can only realistically give an optimistic 3/5. The most gutting thing is that having held our wedding at Oakley Hall, as other reviewers have done similarly, they returned for their anniversary to be given lots of extras such as chocolate covered strawberries, cakes, specially decorated plates, etc. We did not receive any such treatment, not that one should go expecting but if you’re going to go the extra mile for some returning guests then really you should do it for them all, not the favourites as it feels that maybe we weren’t quite special enough for such treatment. We will never forget Oakley Hall but might not return for a while.

Room Tip: Room 7 is beautiful but they are all immaculate
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  • Stayed June 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank edible-monkey
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Level 5 Contributor
56 reviews
11 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 30 helpful votes
Reviewed 17 June 2014

The hotel has been beautifully refurbished. The staff were very attentive and the food very good. The rooms were nice - great lighting options (4 different settings) and the TV played through speakers in the bathroom! The grounds are stunning. All in all a good stay.

  • Stayed June 2014, travelled on business
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Whispertravels
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Oakley Hall Hotel

Property: Oakley Hall Hotel
Address: Rectory Road | Basingstoke, Oakley, Basingstoke RG23 7ED, England
Region: United Kingdom > England > Hampshire > Basingstoke > Oakley
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Room Service Suites Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 1 Hotels in Oakley
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££
Hotel Class:4 star — Oakley Hall Hotel 4*
Number of rooms: 50
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Built in 1795, Oakley Hall has a distinguished and fascinating past. The author Jane Austen was a friend of the Bramston family – the then owners – she was a frequent visitor to Oakley Hall and it is mentioned fondly in Austen’s letters to her sister Cassandra. A later owner, William Beach, added a second storey to the house, so creating the grand and impressive building that 21st century visitors can still enjoy. He also employed landscape gardener and architect Edward Milner to design Oakley Hall’s gardens. In 2014, a major restoration project saw Oakley Hall Hotel returned to its full glory, ensuring that visitors will continue to fall in love with Oakley Hall’s Georgian splendour and charm for many years to come. With 50 beautiful bedrooms, suites and even a delightful Garden Cottage from which to choose, guests can indulge in a luxurious stay, enjoy a relaxing drink in the 1795 Bar & Lounge and a fine dining experience in the award-winning 2 AA Rosette Glasshouse Restaurant. Outside there are acres and acres of stunning grounds to explore. From a gentle walk to an early morning run or an afternoon of clay pigeon shooting, there are plenty of things to do. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Oakley Hall Hotel Hampshire

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