Friends recommended this hotel so we booked back in January through the hotel direct. The receptionist couldn't have been more helpful and the booking was duly made, although her English was not the best and it was months later I realised I hadn’t received the promised email confirmation. However the intelligent receptionist I spoke to this time quickly realised the odd name reservation her colleague had created and did then confirm by email to my corrected address! Check in was swift and easy the car park is situated around the back of the hotel and is far too small for the size of the hotel, (only about 25 spaces). It also fills up quickly during the day so arriving early evening you are very unlikely to find a space.
The hotel is decorated very tastefully throughout in the style they try to perpetuate – that of 1865 when it first opened. The trouble is that other parts of the hotel have similarly not been updated. There is no air conditioning and the windows are of the original single glazing types with wood frames; hence traffic noise and external noise values are high. There are lots of floor areas where creaking floorboards are the norm, but if you are unlucky enough to be allocated room 501 then the double bed mattress creaks when you sit on it, and whenever anyone rolls over, wakes up the other occupant too!! This really is totally unacceptable in a hotel of this supposed quality. These points were well proven on our second night’s stay, when we had now moved down 2 floors to room 301; here the traffic noise was even louder although the mattress was silent.
The guest lift can carry only 4 people at a time and I guess if you had much luggage not even that! There is also another housekeeping lift but both are slow and cramped. We found the staff to be helpful and accommodating apart from changing rooms when they are already fully-booked.
The full English breakfast we took in the main restaurant was freshly cooked to order, piping hot and very tasty.
We found the shower slow on the top floor, and difficult to change temperature as the shower head was a massive rainfall style one. Shower flow was much improved 2 floors down in room 301.
This functional hotel is immediately opposite the Plymouth Pavilion and a short walk 5 minutes at most from the Theatre Royal. I will be trying to find an alternative hotel in future.
We did not dine in the restaurant in the evening so cannot comment on this, but the menu which is in every lift had the dinner menu up on the wall for perusal, priced at the sort of level this hotel pretends to be.
I believe Best Western needs to act quickly to return this gem to its former quality, otherwise it will soon lose market share. less