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All reviews magnolia cottage lovely spacious room tea and coffee provided high street very comfortable stay star hotel both mornings the cottages lovely hotel stayed here for one night lovely break easy access evening meal on arrival warm welcome biscuits enjoyed our stay
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Reviewed 7 September 2018 via mobile

We stayed here for one night bed breakfast and dinner on a “buy a gift “ present. The hotel is run by a couple who moved to Devon to run their own hotel and they must be admired for their fortitude. It is a 24 hour day role and they work diligently to make your visit a comfortable one. The hotel is located within walking distance of the seafront but has a secluded feel. It is a two star hotel and is being steadily improved by the owners. The room was comfortable and had an en suite, all of which was very clean. I recommend it for a quiet relaxing break .

Date of stay: September 2018
Trip type: Travelled as a couple
Thank Jeff522013
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Lorinda L, Owner at The Darnley Hotel, responded to this reviewResponded 15 September 2018

Hi Jeff, thank you for your review.
We hope to see you here again soon

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 1 September 2018 via mobile

It’s rare that I give any review two stars. The Darnley Hotel, however, has earned this for a number of reasons. If you’re looking for a ‘hotel’ in a convenient location - it’s a good 15-20min downhill walk from its location to the harbour front - with off-street-parking, then it’ll suit you just fine. If you want more from this ‘hotel’, then you might be in for a rude surprise.

We checked in on Tuesday for two nights. Booked and paid online in advance, and at first were pleasantly surprised by the spacious ‘small’ double-room we’d booked. Things rapidly went down hill after discovering that the wifi - as stated as available throughout the hotel on their website - was non-existent in our room. We called down to reception to ask if there were any issues with the login information (perhaps we’d misread the network name etc) only be told that the supplied info was out of date. We were also then told that there was nothing they could do at the time about the issue. 20mins later a knock at the door presented us with a staff member with login details at hand. Great.
Wrong.
What followed was an experience that was completely unacceptable in any hotel or hospitality business. For the next several hours we were told to use the internet outside in the foyer. We were scolded by the hotel owner for continually requesting the wifi issue be resolved, and being treated like ill-mannered children that couldn’t be trusted with a booster. We were told they’d recently taken over the business, though later found out that this was several years ago. That the copper wiring through the premises was dodgy at best, and that asking for the booster could trip a fuse. That they were having difficulties with BT/Openreach who supply their internet, and my personal favourite, that our host was ex-MOD internal security, so we’d best behave. All of this, whilst we sat nervously in OUR ROOM, in our PJ’s. Inappropriate does not begin to cover it.

Perhaps two stars is being generous.

To add to this we were insulted and made to feel unwelcome when we said that we were on an early boat to Lundy, and as such was it possible to have alternative breakfast arrangements. This request was met with ‘I might be able to do tea/toast’. Our sheets were stained with an unidentifiable red mark. Breakfast the following morning was... an experience. Sat right next to another table, so neither could converse privately, and the rest of the room empty. The cooked breakfast, whilst amply proportioned, was not of the best quality - bready-sausages, oily/greasy eggs and fried toast. The decor throughout the hotel is a time-warp to the late 70/80s, the dining room reminded me of every cliche’d British bar in TV shows I’ve ever seen. And all served by our favourite MOD host, keeping his eyes on the shifty guests who personally returned the booster to him the following morning, without comment or acknowledgement.

So whilst the ‘hotel’, if you can call a glorified dodgy 80s-themed B&B a hotel, may offer off-street-parking, and may have wifi in the hotel - the owner’s own admission, the wifi is through the hotel, but there was never any guarantee to its strength or availability - I personally will never recommend it to anyone. Pay the extra and stay somewhere else, even at a knock down price this hotel is a dud.

Date of stay: August 2018
Trip type: Travelled as a couple
2  Thank MoonRiverTravelsUK
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 31 August 2018 via mobile

This ‘hotel’ was truly terrible. I don’t mind somewhere budget or a little tired but our room seemed like it hadn’t been touched for decades. The mattress was worn through and so soft it was impossible to stay in one place on it. This led to 2 nights of very little sleep. Added to this, there was what looked like a lipstick mark on the sheets when we arrived (see photo) and old bird poo grotted across the windows which was not cleaned before or during our stay.

The anaglypta wallpaper spoke to the age of the decor and, combined with the owner’s comments about a lack of an electrical rewire, left one wondering.

What truly made the stay deeply uncomfortable was the two owners/staff we encountered. We found the wifi did not work at all in our room and asked about this. First the lady arrived and seemed very put out that we had dared to raise it and then couldn’t deal with it because she had her evening meal in the oven. Later there was a knock on the door and this time it was the man. His initial approach was uncomfortable and this feeling only increased as he entered and lingered in our room, despite us being two women and both in our pyjamas by this point. He proceeded to blame us, call us unreasonable and pretend wifi was some special favour. He went on at length about how they had put in a new shower when the previous one hadn’t worked after they bought the place from the previous owners 2.5-3 years ago. He kept stating we should be grateful they had done anything to the building. This was despite them charging not insignificant prices for the stay.

Eventually, it turned out he’d had a solution all along to the wifi problem (a wifi booster) but he was very reluctant to put in the room. So they knew there as a problem and knew there was a solution and yet did nothing, then tried to blame us repeatedly for having the cheek to raise it and only reluctantly and after much uncomfortableness provided the solution. This was now 2 hours later.

We were staying here in order to spend a day on Lundy. Unfortunately, this ‘hotel’ only offered breakfast from 8:30am to 9:30am and would not offer us any cooked food outside of this time. They seemed to think a one hour slot breakfast was wonderfully generous of them and, in their usual style, proceeded to blame and criticise us. Reluctantly they agreed to let us pick up some bread and cereal at 8:15am. By this point we thought it just to pay for a proper breakfast elsewhere.

The next day we had the breakfast and, perhaps unsurprisingly for this place, it appeared to be the cheapest ingredients and the greasiest of food - we and our stomachs really wished we hadn’t bothered. During the breakfast he started hovering behind us and the uncomfortableness continued. We were very glad to be leaving and will never return.

Date of stay: August 2018
Trip type: Travelled as a couple
1  Thank Ally_Explorer
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 31 July 2018 via mobile

My Spouse & I were given a ‘tea for two’ experience voucher as a gift. As we were in the area, we booked it at The Darnley Hotel.
As our two dogs were with us, we sat outside in the pleasant shady garden which was very peaceful.
Our refreshments consisted of tasty sandwiches, scones with cream & raspberry jam, plus cakes & a pot of tea.
I am a vegetarian, so had cheese/tomato sandwiches & egg mayo, whilst my other half had a few beef ones too.
It was delicious because everything was so fresh - which is appreciated. We could not fault it. There was a nice selection of fresh cakes too.
Our hosts were really nice hospitable people who made us feel very welcome.
Thank you for a pleasant experience.

Date of stay: July 2018
Trip type: Travelled as a couple
1  Thank BigFatBudgie
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Lorinda L, Owner at The Darnley Hotel, responded to this reviewResponded 17 August 2018

So very glad you enjoyed!
Pop in again for a cream or afternoon tea when you are in the area next.
Hope to see you all soon
Lorinda and Paul

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 29 June 2018

We stayed here recently the night before a staying trip to Lundy, travelling as two couples and taking both a twin and a double room.

We were a little confused at first as we did not seem to be able to find a reception, so called the number of the hotel and were delighted to be able to check in really quite early. (their cleaner had been particularly efficient that day!). A much appreciated and useful bonus.

The double was not that large but perfectly comfortable and very clean, the twin being larger and just the same. The double had recently had work done to improve the shower, and it was perfectly satisfactory.

The interior some might think quaint and old fashioned (it was a 1920's Doctor's house), but it is pretty, and the communal rooms are huge and tasteful furnished.

They do offer evening meals. We did not take these, but only because our time in Ilfracombe was limited. They were able to offer an earlier breakfast to accommodate us sailing early the following day, again much appreciated (thank you!), although the breakfast did not then include anything cooked, but that was just fine by us.

Something of note if you travel with your dog, the hotel is dog friendly. I understand other travellers were staying at hotel at the time with dog, and they had a separate breakfast table made up by the hosts in the lounge, presumably so the dog could accompany them as dogs are obvioulsy not OK in the restaurant / breakfast room. +1 if you are a travelling dog fan.

While this hotel would not normally see us return (only because Ilfracombe is not on my places to go list) as it looks like we will be returning to Lundy in 2019, then the Darnley will be high on my list of places to go for the overnight stop.

The price was also good, at a roughly £150 for a twin and a double for a night, breakfast included. Not bad value at all.

Very good choice, and very happy to have stayed there.

Date of stay: June 2018
  • Trip type: Travelled as a couple
    • Sleep Quality
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Thank Mooke1972
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Lorinda L, Owner at The Darnley Hotel, responded to this reviewResponded 5 July 2018

Thank you very much for your honest review, I am sure others will find it very helpful. You are such lovely people and we look forward to welcoming you back in 2019 all going well.

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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