More about Royal Highland Hotel
Nice and clean
After having a bad experience in Edinburgh (I will not name the hotel...) I was pleasantly surprised by the Royal Highland Hotel in Inverness. I had a good size room (booked as a single room) with an apparently recently refurbished bathroom with a nice bath annex shower (good water pressure!). Only television reception was substandard, but of course you do not get all the way to northern Scotland to watch TV!
Breakfast was average, and I did not try the attached ASH restaurant.
Location of the hotel is excellent: next to railway station and main shopping mall of Inverness, within walking distance of Tourist information. Only drawback was the very limited number (I think only eight or ten) of parking places in front of the hotel. However, there is a large multistorey carpark just around the corner that charges only 3 pounds for 24 hours stay (sep 2006), so this was not a serious problem.
I experienced none of the booking problems experienced by other reviewers: checking in was quick and pleasant.
All in all: good value for money and a good base to explore northern Scotland from.
Very pleased - all round
Very pleased all round with this hotel, its food, its accommodation and its location. Travelling to Inverness from London really has to be by train, as its a two day drive each way by car. The Royal Highland Hotel, is located right outside the station, hence its old name of The Station Hotel. It was built in traditional railway empire style, very grand. There are a good selection of different grade rooms, and we opted to stay in one of their executive rooms (which is above standard, but not as grand as a suite). The room was quite, despite its city centre location, and the room was well furnished with a comfortable double bed. The Scottish breakfasts were good, with a large buffet selection with everything from cereals, to cooked breakfast - all help yourself. The evening restaurant, called Ash Restuarant, has a number of excellent dishes: the roast vension, the duck and comquats, and the haggis, neeps and tatties were all highly recommendable. The bar has both real ale and an extensive selection of malt whiskies. What more do you want ? Inverness, itself is very picturesque, and the wife and I enjoyed walks to the nearby castle, and along the River Ness. My wife also enjoyed the nearby shops. It was a great location to travel from. We went by train to Kyle of Lochalsh (a world famous scenic railway) and a nice destination opposite the Isle of Skye. We hired a car to RSPB Loch Garten, and stopped off at the Tomartin Distillery on the way back for a FREE whisky. The weather, being June, was hot a sunny, without any rain. Indeed, we got sunburnt ! Altogether, a highly recommendable holiday. A week is too short, and goes by too quickly !!
My partner and I stayed at the Royal Highland on November the 11th and 12th, 2005. And my advice would be to book elsewhere. I cannot really complain about the standard double room that we had. It was clean and in good condition, although the decor is dated and becoming a little tired (the bathrooms have obviously been modernised fairly recently). However I must add here that I paid a room rate of £65 a night (B&B). The hotels own website states room rates well in excess of £100. I certainly would not be happy with the quality of room had I paid that amount.
My main complaint comes from the quality of service I experienced. I did not find the reception staff partly helpful or pleasant. One particular incident was when my partner and I went down for breakfast on Sunday morning. Breakfast on Sunday is served till 10am. We walked down at 9.50 to find the dining room door shut. I entered only to be stopped by a waitress and told that breakfast was no longer being served. I said that I thought breakfast was served till 10 and it was still only 9.50. To which she replied “I make it 9.58”
I was astounded by the impertinence. I proceeded to say that it was not 10 and that we would be having breakfast, at which the waitress walked away.
I also would not recommend the hotels Ash restaurant. The quality of food is completely unsatisfactory for what it costs. It is clearly pre cooked and reheated to death.
My partner and I had a very enjoyable time in Inverness, but this hotel did not enhance it.
Good location, Good service, Wierd combination of the old and new
There is no faulting the location of this hotel for rail travellers. I spent one night thre in April on my way to Findhorn. Arriving late after a train delay and finding all the local restaurants closed (it was only 10pm!) the reception staff were really nice and asked the kitchen to prepare a sandwhich. The room was fine an breakfast was good. Overall, I liked this hotel. It's quite quirky and at a reduced rate of £69.oo reasonable value. There is a slight discrepancy between the older part of the main hotel combined with the modern adjoining restaurant which doesn't quite sit well together. But for the right price, it was fine.
Was one of the worst hotels I ever stayed in
I recently looked at the trip advisor and the reviews on this hotel and feel guilty that I did not write one earlier.
My husband and I went for 5 days last July thinking we would leave the troubles behind and relax and were we sorry.
When we arrived they said they did not know anything about our booking even though it had been booked seven months earlier. We waited in reception for over 2 hours along with at least six other couples and some were americans who were giving off bucket loads. The reception staff actually disappeared most of this time.
When we finally got a room, which we paid £55.00 each for, £110.00 per night, it was dark smelly and small with no bath and you could not walk past each other in the room.
I went straight down and they eventally moved us to a larger room, it had a bathroom. The hotel is attached to the railway station our view was of a perspex roof, the dining room has false windows and the food is not kept chilled but in July was sitting out on tables and looked disgusting. If you ordered poached egg it took over 15 minutes but it was worth the wait as I would not eat anything on the tables.
The ticket for the free cocktail I would say contained very very little alcohol. The hotel itself is very shabby and nothing like the web site the hotel has on the internet.
However on one positive note Inverness was a wonderful town. The Lough Ness tour was brilliant. Also checkout the fantastic guest houses along the river Ness, ie Glen Mhor. Also inverness is very small the longest walk you would have to do is 10 minutes so the Royal Highland is no better a location than the guesthouses or smaller hotels on the river. In fact they would be quieter you would not have to waken at the crack of dawn listening to a railway tanoy.
Location, Location, Location
This place isn't as bad as some of the reviews indicate -- as long as you have realistic expectations. Many of the staff are still struggling with English as a second language and breakfast was failry dismal, but the room was better than I recalled from earlier visits. The redeeming quality is the hotel's location just outside the train station. Two tips: (1) According to Scottish friends, Inverness has developed a reputation as a place with a real problem with young hooligans. Rooms facing Academy Street will get loud singing and shouting from young drunks until the wee hours -- not just on weekends, but EVERY night. (2) The hotel apparently attracts a lot of tour groups. If you arrive or depart when one of these bus tours is in the process of checking in or out, the lift will be unavailable and the front desk will be overwhelmed.
Dont Hand over your credit card
Arrived here, after 9pm on a friday night, and was welcolmed by a polite european receptionist, who asked for my credit card to pre-authorise it, and when i said i wish to pay cash, he said it didnt matter. So he authorised it for £40 over the accommodation value.
This means, the hotel take the money out of our account and hold onto it. do not do this as they have you over a barrell, and because no one tells you it means the money is not AVAILABLE to you.
When I noticed we complained, and the person on reception, and us came to an agreement, and she admitted this wasnt the first time, the receptionist had done this, as if we wanted to pay cash this would have been okay.
But beware, they will go back on the agreement, once you have left the hotel.
Obviously, with them taking the money (by the way this is legal!!) we had no money left, on my card as it was over the ammount owed to them, our weekend was ruined.
The hotel in general is okay, the noise from the train station starts early, esp the tannoy but breakfast was okay
I believe just avoid this place, until they change the policy, as i worked in hotel, there is other ways to confirm bookings.
No record of our booking
Like some of the other reviewers we were told by the receiptionist that the hotel had no record of our booking (for a twin room, made two months previously). Luckily we had booked through a tour company and I had a letter from them with the details on it. The result seemed like an upgrade to a room with 2 double beds and a big bathroom. I thought the hotel itself was rather grand and it is in an excellent location. However, I don't think I would stay there again because of the hassle on arrival and the rather mediocre breakfast.
Stayed in April & Sept '06 - April visit was in single room (200 series). This room was ok. Had early breakfast as catching train and this was poor as inadequate staff and hardly any food prepared - all self service except tea/coffee/toast.
Booked via 'laterooms' so price reasonable.
Sept visit - again single room (300 series) this time. Room was obviously ex smoking with ashtray still in room and not as nice as previous. As I was a late arrival with early rise 'made do'!
Breakfast was much better this time though nothing remakable. Again booked via 'laterooms' so price paid was about half normal rate, which considering standards, are very much on the high side.
Place is adequate for 1 night to catch early trains, and if rate paid is cheap ok but cannot recommend it for anything else!