The good bits: Richmond is a beautiful place; the staff were great; the bed was very comfortable and the breakfast was lovely.
Now Room 32. This is on the first floor by a staircase (take note, this is significant).
It has two large windows. Unfortunately they are blocked completely by a stone parapet less than 450mm away so the room is in permanent semi-darkness.
The bathroom is a feat of ingenuity. The door opens against a step. The sink just fits in on the left. It takes quite a bit of manoeuvring to close the door, which you need to do in order to access the steps to the bath or loo (which are on a platform); necessary because it is built over the staircase. The easiest way is to sit in the sink!
The plumbing is typical of the Victorian era; it takes a long time to get hot water and even longer to avoid being frozen or scalded.
Electrics by the bed are delivered via an extension lead attached to the wall. As this powers the kettle, radio and presumably a hairdryer etc. it is not an installation recommended by the Fire Service. Behind the bed is a truly awful print of a lurid red flower which clashes vibrantly with the greenish décor. At least in bed one has a view of the stone parapet and not the flower!
The breakfast room exudes ‘class and charm’. Really? Yes the wallpaper and chandeliers are lovely, giving a historical feel, utterly spoiled by some truly awful modern art, purchased by an individual who has to be colour-blind or taste-challenged. I am a designer and love modern painting but these have no artistic merit whatsoever. I presume they were chosen to blend in with the wallpaper, but they don’t even do that. Quite how they’ve managed to purchase several paintings in shades of brown that don’t tone in with the brown wallpaper is beyond me.
The bar is a cross between a working man’s club and a caff; it’s not remotely cosy or characterful and we went speedily out to eat and relax elsewhere. I think the artist J.M.W. Turner would change his description of this hotel and turn in his grave (or hang his paintings on the walls)! less