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Reviewed 9 October 2018

First time on a Shearing’s break I will review the hotel first then review Shearing’s at the end
Bay Dilkhusa Grand Hotel
Arrived around 18:30 it was well organised a member of staff came on the bus informed us of meal times and gave us our room keys so no need for checking in our bags were brought to our rooms so no need to drag your cases around a nice touch.
Our room was on the ground floor room no 2 and I have to say a very nice room it looked as though it had recently been renovated the bathroom was very nice new tiles toilet and sink.
It was a family room with a double and single bed which we paid a £10 under occupancy supplement for but the room was very nice so did not mind it had a lovely bay window which overlooked the Jubilee Gardens. The room was very clean as was the bedding and towels.
The public areas in the hotel were looking a bit tired here and there but then again it is an old hotel so it’s to be expected and to be honest not too bad really.
The staff were excellent nothing was too much trouble the waiters in the dining room and bar staff were constantly on the go but not a single moan they could not do enough for you.
Breakfast was self-service full English bacon, sausage, hash brown, fried bread, baked beans, fried and scrambled eggs cereals and toast tea and coffee was waiter served.
Evening meal was waiter served a choice of starters mains and deserts the first two days the choice was quite good but the last two days not so good but saying that it was all ok perhaps not to my taste, some of the things on offer were pate, soup melon for starters, roast chicken, roast pork, steak and kidney pudding, chicken pasta bake, beef goulash (which Barbera who runs the bar and is Hungarian said it’s just a beef stew not goulash)
At first I thought the portions were not that big but with 3 courses it was fine although I am not a big eater so some might find the portions on the small side also could do with a bit more gravy or sauce.
The 4 free drinks per day were very good and quite a good choice plus you could upgrade your drinks I found the Tetley’s bitter a bit gassy so for one voucher plus £1 upgraded to Guinness. The entertainment was far better than I was expecting Monday it was Dave Davis (no not the bloke from the Kinks) he told jokes played guitar and sang he was very entertaining. Tuesday it was Johnathan Mark and again very good vocalist, guitar & saxophone player and jokes thrown in, we also learned he was originally from Middlesbrough area where we are from. Wednesday it was Rick Tucker and probably the best one vocalist guitar lots of jokes and a bingo caller. Thursday it was a female vocalist and I did not get her name she wasn’t a bad singer but the song choices seemed to be all over the place.
In conclusion I could not find anything wrong with the hotel and for what I paid it was very good value for money I didn’t pay 5 star prices so I was not expecting a 5 star hotel.
Shearing’s
We were picked up at 06:10 so an early start made a few more pickups and then taken to Normanton interchange this is a logistical nightmare just waiting to happen and guess what it did, we were stuck at Normanton for what seemed like a lifetime we found out later from our driver that the coach that was to take us to Ilfracombe was also a feeder coach to Normanton but the driver had not turned up so another driver had to be called out causing about an hour and a half delay. While we were waiting I got called to the information desk what fun it was trying to get to it with all these people waiting around eventually made it to find the label had come off my case it had ended up at the correct bay so must have come off when offloaded at the bay anyway the label was replaced and I eventually made my way to the bay with my case wading through people stood around waiting so not a good start to the day.
Once we were free of Normanton all was ok our driver was Andy and I don’t think we could have got a better one Andy’s knowledge of North Devon was amazing and made it that more special.
There were two trips included plus a couple more trips you could pay extra for as we had not been to North Devon before we went on them all.
Tuesday morning it was the included trip to Barnstable a nice small town with an indoor market. Afternoon was the extra trip first we went to Combe Martin where we stopped for lunch then on to Watermouth Castle which was very good it is full of some amazing things I won’t spoil it for anyone who might go but don’t miss the water show.
Wednesday it was an extra trip to Lynton & Lynmouth an interesting place also known as little Switzerland go have a look at the model railway its very good and free admission
Afternoon was free time in Ilfracombe
Thursday the included trips to Quince Honey Farm and Bidisford again a pleasant day out with loads of info from Andy.
Friday was return to Normanton and once again not without drama once at Normanton we were due to leave from bay 3 that’s what was on the labels on our cases but on the information screen it said bay 4 so alarm bells started to ring, we inquired at the information desk where the lady said oh well spotted I will sort it, after about 30 mins we again inquired if our cases had been put on bay 4 this time she just muttered something to another woman who just shrugged. In the end our friends went out to the bay and sure enough the bags were on bay 3 so they moved them to bay 4 and informed the driver.
The Shearing’s experience on the whole was ok but Normanton is too big and only one thing needs to go wrong then the whole lot fails perhaps another interchange in the north east is needed.

Room Tip: room 2 is good
  • Stayed: October 2018, travelled with friends
    • Sleep Quality
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
1  Thank Bloodaxe01
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Matthew S, Deputy Manager at Bay Dilkhusa Grand Hotel, responded to this reviewResponded 11 October 2018

Thank you for taking the time to post your lengthy review, it will give others a great insight as what to expect if visiting the Dilkhusa. I'm glad you found arrival at the hotel well organised, enjoyed your nice clean room and found the staff excellent. I will pass your review onto the team.
I will pass your second part of the review onto Shearing's Transport team.
Once again thank you for your comments and I hope this is the start of many Shearings holidays to come, we look forward to welcoming you back in the future.

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 9 October 2018

There were several good features of this hotel - on site car parking, a good clean room, drinks vouchers ( not available all the time) and good fast service in the restaurant. A special mention for Pat the restaurant manager, who looked after us so well. The downsides were a lack of fruit and yoghurts on some days - we were told on our last morning that they had no yoghurts or bananas in the hotel! Also the bedroom was sparse on extras - apart from soap there were none! having said that we will probably be back.

  • Stayed: October 2018, travelled with friends
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Service
1  Thank Andrew C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Matthew S, Deputy Manager at Bay Dilkhusa Grand Hotel, responded to this reviewResponded 11 October 2018

Thank you for posting your review, I am delighted to read that it was the best Shearings hotel you have been to, I will pass your review onto the team especially Pat who looked after you well. I pleased to see you found your room clean, enjoyed the drinks vouchers and received good service in the restaurant. I will discuss the lack of items with the head chef. We hope to welcome you again soon.

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Reviewed 9 October 2018

visited this hotel 5th oct 2018 with national holidays, we enjoyed our stay as the food was good buffet breakfast, was very good indeed ,although the evening meal which was waiter service was a bit hit and miss, the entertainment was great with resident entertainer scott and a comedian Friday night although the Saturday night with scott doing 2 spots what a voice this guy has, sunday night was a bit of a let down with a singer/guitar player who I thought was a anti climax after the previous two nights, with 4 included branded drinks each evening this was a good value holiday

Stayed: October 2018
Thank william h
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Matthew S, Deputy Manager at Bay Dilkhusa Grand Hotel, responded to this reviewResponded 11 October 2018

Thank you for taking the time to post your review. I am pleased to read that you enjoyed your stay and found the food good, especially the buffet breakfast. As you said we offer a good value for money holiday. We hope to see you again in the future.

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Reviewed 5 October 2018

Hotel was clean, beds comfortable and a very spacious upgraded room, We enjoyed all the meals we had breakfast and evening meal. Had 4 drinks vouchers per day each and available alcoholic drinks were very good. Coffee facility in room.
Had never been to Ilfracombe before and found it lovely place.
Not recommended if you can not manage a lot of stairs to different levels everywhere.

  • Stayed: September 2018, travelled as a couple
    • Sleep Quality
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
1  Thank Maurice P
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Matthew S, Deputy Manager at Bay Dilkhusa Grand Hotel, responded to this reviewResponded 7 October 2018

Thank you for posting your 5 star review, I am delighted to read that you celebrated your birthday with us. Its pleasing to read that you enjoyed the meals and found your accommodation clean and comfortable. As you said Ilfracombe is a lovely place, we hope to welcome you again in the future.

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Reviewed 5 October 2018

This was my seventh Shearings' holiday this year and turned out to be my most memorable.
However it got off to a bad start as I was given the most deplorable single room I have ever experienced. Eventually I was given more suitable accommodation on the Tuesday with a satisfactory explanation why this could not be achieved on the first night.
That said I have to award the five stars for the food and service.
The food was as usual wholesome and plentiful (if you need more veg then just ask) don't wait till you get home and whinge and moan on this site.
The restaurant staff were particularly helpful with special thanks to Stacey and Charlie.

Barbara and Lewis behind the bar were a dream team always smiling and extremely professional in their service. They were due to get married on the Saturday following my departure on the Friday. I trust their nuptials were a great success (and that the cut glass cake stand arrived) and that their union will be a perfect partnership.
So why was it most memorable?
Well I too met a lady friend and we have kept in contact ever since the holiday and are due to join forces next week at Bay Hotel Torbay.
Well done Shearings although I am sure we are not the first!!! Still it's not bad for 70 year old teenagers!!!!!!!

  • Stayed: September 2018, travelled solo
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Service
Thank DavidLGB
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Matthew S, Deputy Manager at Bay Dilkhusa Grand Hotel, responded to this reviewResponded 7 October 2018

Thank you very much for taking the time to post your review. I am pleased to read that you had your most memorable holiday whilst staying with us.
Its nice to see that you enjoyed the food and found the portions plenty, I will pass your five star award to the chef and the helpful waiting staff especially Stacey and Charlie.
I am delighted to say that Barbara and Lewis's special day was a success, I will pass your comments to them. I hope that you and your lady friend have a wonderful time at the Torbay Hotel, and we hope to see you again at the Dilkhusa Grand in the near future.

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