Value Score Average Value
Good For Families
Oh my! is this place for real?
The Honiley Court Hotel, Warwick was the base for our recent 24-28 August 2009 coach tour, which my wife an I as well as approximately forty eight others chose to visit the Cotswold villages travelling from Scotland. As a disabled person I had been in touch with the Tour Company based in East Kilbride, Lanarkshire, who in turn had secured for me and my wife a ground floor bedroom.
Unfortunately, they seemed totally unaware of their agreement and offered me after approximately 45mins waiting in the lobby the disabled facilities bedroom which did indeed turn out to be on the ground floor.
The first thing that struck my wife and I was the fact that the carpet in the room seemed more than just a little dirty, actually filthy would be a more accurate description. The net curtains were in an equally poor state and were hanging off of the curtain rail. (I shall not even bother going into the general state of the rooms standard of decor, (Lumps of ‘Blue Tack’ stuck all over the walls as if it had been more recently used as a teenagers bedroom or office. Wall paper pealing and stained due to water ingress) However, being exhausted from the coach trip my wife and I lay on our twin beds and closed our eyes for an hour prior to the evening meal.
Here I have to say we were quite pleasantly surprised, relieved and pleased when on entering the dining room we saw neatly laid out tables to accommodate our touring party. Sitting down we were greeted by welcoming staff who offered bread rolls. However when it came to both the cutlery and the glassware they were in a disgusting state, none of them seemed to have been polished (Cleaned with a dry soft cloth prior to laying in place) with the clear imprints of fingers to lipstick openly visible. I cannot be sure if the tables behind me had experienced the same dirty utensils but I can presume that our table was not singled out for special attention. We cleaned our own glasses and cutlery. Jugs of iced water were placed on each table of four and was a most welcoming refreshing drink, especially as the bar was charging £6.00 per glass of ‘house wine’ and £4.00 for a glass of coke. One that I might add was more than generously filled with ice. The first meal was pleasant and well presented, (I only eat vegetarian dishes when away from home as I have among other things a Hep ‘c’ liver condition and have to be very careful that the food is both fresh and cooked properly)I do not say that the food on either the first or second day was not cooked properly. However the third day was very definitely not the case. The tomato risotto which I, and approximately a dozen other of my fellow travellers ordered was an unmitigated mess. The wrong rice was either used or was boiled for so long it was reduced to little more than a wallpaper paste. The tomato content was one slice and as every meal, irrespective of the order was accompanied by three boiled potatoes. Prior to this main course that was rejected by everyone who had ordered it, we had ordered caramelised onion and stilton tartlet, and these were so cold as to put your teeth on edge. My own and the one that had been ordered by a friend actually contained ice! It was obvious that these had not been removed from the fridge or freezer prior to being presented to us in order that they might achieve room temperature and therefore be completely edible. Many were complaining to each other but I decided to make the complaint official, if you will, by complaining to one of the waiters. I asked him to take the offending offering to the chef. He did and responded back with ‘The chef says there is nothing wrong with it’. When the risotto was served the noise of complaint throughout the dining room was audible, I then asked the waiter if I could actually speak with the chef, he acceded to my request and I went through to the kitchen at his invitation. When I started to talk to him about the starter course (tartlet) he pointed to the kitchen fridge/freezer and pointed out with pride the figure of minus three degrees on the large digital readout. Talking to him was a total waste of time, and as he verbally expressed his confidence in his own cooking abilities moved forward to a large chopping block and laid his hand on a very large carving knife telling me that I didn’t know what I was talking about. I’m not a coward by any interpretation that might be applied to that descriptive word but that was where I decided I was getting nowhere and a prudent withdrawal was called for.
That evening I had nothing to eat, though I was offered pork of some description, but turned it down. I attempted to eat the risotto out of sheer hunger but after two mouthfuls declined as did my fellow diners. Quiet a few on the following morning had suffered mild diarrhoea, vomiting and headache.
Breakfast was the best meal. Plenty of fresh fruit and juices, good cooked breakfast, plenty of toast. Well it would have been good, but with fifty persons arriving for breakfast we were presented with six fried eggs, (we were told they only had a frying pan big enough for six persons) Oh yes and the toaster broke down with no backup we all had to go without, it was repaired by the following day, though you did have to put it through the toaster up to eight times before it even looked like toast Many gave up waiting for eggs and went without.
It was on the last day that I was told by a friend that she had seen some badly soiled mattresses left in the hallway, as she pointed out they were hardly a good advert. I went back and lifted the sheets off and to my horror discovered the state of the mattresses my wife and I had been sleeping on for the past four nights. (see pictures)
As a former senior social worker and latterly a social work consultant I can say with all confidence that I have seen doss houses cleaner than this hotel, I have tasted better food when sitting down alongside the homeless. (Though not including the first two days of our dining experience which was reasonable to good!)
Unique Quality: None, if you desire positive qualities. Potentially this Hotel could be a good three star (How the AA gave this three stars is an absolute mystery)though this would mean investment on upgrading the essential fabric of the bedrooms and public areas. Employing staff who can communicate at least effectively if not fluently, staff training, and qualified kitchen staff who know what they are doing.
And a top down management system that works.
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