Summer for most means lots of fun times, BBQs, beaches, pool time, weekends away, spa dates, travel, parties and everything in between. This is it for us too and this year has been no different. We can say hand on heart we are so grateful that we get to live this life. Just recently, our close friends invited us to their 3rd wedding anniversary to the Chester Grosvenor Hotel, Chester.
On paper, this hotel looks amazing, when you look at its Trip Advisor images and reviews, you know you are going to have a treat, in old world English charm and décor.
Did it deliver on the charm? No spoilers here so read on…
Last October we had our couple’s get away and vision casting at the Formby Hall Golf Resort. We spent valentines at the Doubletree by Hilton hotel. So, we felt we were in for a treat having looked at other Chester Hotels.
This hotel is said to be a 5 Star hotel so somehow, we expected a Thermal Suite aka Pool, Jacuzzi, Sauna, Steam room the works…
We also seriously considered the Mill Hotel Spa in the same neighbourhood…and somehow, we got to experience both…Again No spoilers.
The idea was to have fun, celebrate our friends’ anniversary, unplug and release stress in a pool/Jacuzzi and a celebrated spa… Alas it wasn’t meant to be!
So, what exactly happened and did we love the experience? Might we make it a tradition?
In this episode, we share our Chester Grosvenor Hotel review and experience. More so, we would love to share our 2 days with you in arrears.
The Chester Grosvenor Hotel Review
As always, when we visit a hotel, resort, spa etc. We look at various criteria for review which you will notice as we go.
As you know by now, we are true believers that life is meant to be lived out loud, it is a gift, thus it’s called the present and who better deserves to enjoy the fruits of your labour than you?
On this occasion we decided to venture closer to home in Chester.
At a price point of £162 per room per night we expected amazing things for a “Double Room” including breakfast! The equivalent of $201/room/night.
We are sure you are chomping on the bit as to what amazingness we got at that price. So, lets take a walk through what we got and experienced!
As always, we share our @pkjulesworld rating based on the following criteria:
- Facilities and services
- Character and style
- Bung for your Buck and
- The Good and Overall Room for Improvement
- Overall Rating… and, here goes…
Our Grosvenor Hotel Chester Review
Our Pkjulesworld Overall Rating 7/10 and below are the details why!
Location – 8 / 10
Set out bang on the high street of Chester town shopping district, opposite the likes of Next, New Look, Russel Bromley etc. is the Chester Grosvenor Hotel and Spa. This destination is about 35 minutes’ drive from our home and one can get there by train too.
If you drive, which our friends did, you park at the front of the hotel (if you find a space) and hand over your keys to one of the many door men. They park your car in the Grosvenor hotel parking, shared with the retail shopping centre next door.
Parking costs £10/day included in the hotel price. Since this hotel is bang in the middle of the town, top kudos for this provision, or it would be a nightmare for guests to find own parking.
The town was super busy, and of course your car parked for you is an extra touch of luxury/customer care.
The location for the tourist cannot be faulted. Shopping, site seeing, transport all spot on…For someone looking for peace and quiet, spaciousness, grounds, you would be in the wrong place.
Address: The Chester Grosvenor
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“A journey is best measured in friends, rather than miles.” – Tim Cahill
Facilities and Service – 7/10
At first glance you would be right in thinking you just arrived at the Manor house for a Lord!
The Chester Grosvenor is a building that apparently dates back to the 1850’s. It is a Grade 11 Listed Building owned by the Duke of Westminster. It is on 4-Floors, surrounded by acres of shops and retail establishments housed in similar real estate, literally supporting the Chester Town wall.
The hotel comprises of 80 Rooms Inc. Deluxe and Executive Suites.
Once you step inside, you are met with a modern yet distinctly classy old-world charm in the foyer, with a 24-hour reception desk.
There are not many seats in the foyer although you will be met with lovely aromas from the Michelin Star rated restaurant on your left (Michelin 2009 – 2019).
We noted the sweeping stairway and massive chandelier right off the First floor. It felt and looked just right in such an old building. In fact, it complemented the beautiful manor style architecture around it!
The staff at the front desk were professional and friendly. We were checked in in record time and headed straight for our “Double Room” which was on the 4th floor. We couldn’t wait to see it… Suffice to say we were super wowed by the size of the bed (It was Huge, could sleep 4 comfortably). Bathroom had the old world charm too.
The rest of the room was okay, with tea making facilities, milk in a branded bottle in the fridge, everything else was similar to other hotels
It was functional, definitely stood its ground compared to other establishments we have been to like the DoubleTree by Hilton not far off, the Arizona Conquistador Hilton Golf resort, The Budapest Corinthia, The Beverly Hills Hilton etc.
But our friends, the Anniversary celebrants who had booked a SUITE had a whole other experience…
Their suite seemed to have flies all over, granted it was a warm humid summer day, we thought oh well, it is not ideal but hopefully they would go away as it got cooler in the night… Nope they didn’t, more and more kept coming in WTH….
After our dinner which was an experience as well, we were called to give our celebrants company due to the flies ordeal and worry…
We arrived to a suite with lots of annoying flies… Having grown up in Africa, we thought oh well, mere insects we can kill them all and have a bit of fun. We put on some music, poured some wine and danced between killing flies. It was surreal…the windows were heaving with these creatures…What the heck was going on?
We will Not SHARE those IMAGES for Purposes of propriety.
About midnight, 3 men barged into the suite saying there was too much commotion going on. They ordered us to switch off the music and everything. We were shocked and a wee bit petrified by their entrance…the “bride” was inconsolable.”
Long story short, we went to the reception desk, explained our friends’ predicament and asked they be moved to another suite asap. Fortunately, this was actioned immediately and they were moved to a super Executive suite called the Alderbridge Suite…
The hotel ownership and management need to re-visit their environmental and housekeeping practices. Those flies were massive and too many. In a SUITE…!
And the next morning one of the staff who was called to change the bedding in their new suite, used a cloth to wash the glasses and then used the same cloth to wipe down the sinks and god knows what else… We were too shocked to even say anything. We felt sick jeez.
The hotel has Wi-Fi all over for guests free of charge. Although it just didn’t seem to be strong enough in some places say for a live-stream.
The parking of guests’ cars by the Grosvenor hotel door men is a touch of class and of course saves the hotel guests from looking and paying for parking as an extra cost.
Let’s talk about the Spa and Non-existent Thermal Suite! 5/10
Paul is a stickler for attention and he went off to check out the spa as we had lots of time before dinner. He and the “groom” Found that the spa was lacking one major component for a hotel to be considered “FIVE STAR”. There was no swimming pool, nor Jacuzzi. All that was offered in the Chester Grosvenor spa was:
- Various massages
- Aromatherapy and…
- A Sauna.
Plus, the whole “spa suite” closes at 6pm! WHAT? So, most guests would miss this if they arrived past 4:30pm unless they rushed straight to it…!
We love the thermals: pool. Jacuzzi, steam room etc…and we couldn’t understand this… So, we asked at the front desk and we were informed that The Grosvenor hotel, Chester is a “RED 5-STAR” hotel! Apparently, an establishment s allowed to miss 1-2 components that make a 5-Star rating as long as they meet all other ratings at 5-Star standard… #confused? We too! ☹
We slept on it ad the next day we requested that we be refunded our Spa fee so we could go elsewhere. We also were wondering where else the flies of the “Suite” above had been visiting and laying eggs, so we didn’t really wish to us the onsite spa.
Fortunately for us, the Spa manager called the sister hotel: The Mill Hotel Spa to accommodate us for the day at no extra cost. For that we are totally thankful and give her and the Grosvenor hotel top marks. So we did have a relaxed day in a pool, frolicked and got thermal massage in a Jacuzzi, and sweated out the toxins in a Sauna.
We will talk about the experience in a post of its own, so keep your eyes peeled.
We applaud the Grosvenor Hotel, Spa manager’s professionalism and quickly handling our inquiry and making sure we were served!
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Character and Style – 9 / 10
It’s the attention to detail at any hotel that we look for. The Chester Grosvenor hotel décor has a touch of the old-world English charm, though not overbearing! The golf high street view side where we had our room was okay. We didn’t hear any road noise nor shoppers chatter. Means they have nailed the noise reduction, bringing the Manor house bang into the 21st Century!
Stylized sitting on the landings facing the gigantic chandelier that apparently costs 6k/mo to clean adds a touch of glitz to the hotel. The massive king size bed with melt on feather down pillows. We honestly had a good night sleep when we got to our beds and so we are thankful for that.
The bathroom was a good size with a shower/bathtub in one and a separate bidet. A cool touch that is no longer common in hotels. A massive hot towel rail, shaving mirror, hair dryer and lots of branded Elemis bath accessories. Awesome.
Lots of towels, 2 branded bathrobes and slippers, plus soaps. Not forgetting the large mirror and lighting good for shaving as well!
The room had a wardrobe, ironing board with iron, a safe and lots of hangers.
The plumbing made a weird gurgling sound when you run the tap in the sink…Might be an isolated room thing or the hotel plumbing is as ancient as the hotel building.
Our friends’ suite was huge. The first one was just a large room with a screen separating seating space with a two-seater sofa and a couple of chairs and tables, from the bed space.
The Executive suite they were moved to was a whole “apartment.” A separate dining and entertainment lounge with full furnishings. Including tea making facilities, a flat screen TV and Bose speaker, dining table with 4 chairs and lots of seating. A party room, we utilized it fully.
It had a separate toilet and a bathroom suite with a separate shower, deep soak in bath tub, his and hers sinks, lots of space.
The bedroom space was a room of its own through a walk thru wardrobe corridor, the size of our “double room.” With another flat screen TV and lots of storage, chairs for seating and space all round it. No flying insects for sure.
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Bung for your buck i.e. Value for money – 8 / 10
Well we felt kinda short changed when we saw the “Spa Suite.” And though the breakfast was ample and had a touch of class i.e. served breakfast. It just lacked the Michelin Star taste in our humble opinion and the servers took their blessed time to serve guests.
We only could have cereal, fruit/yogurt, tea and bread as part of the “room price!”
A cooked full English breakfast cost an extra £9.99/person plus taxes!!
Why the heck don’t they just add that to the room price and serve people a full English if thats what they wish to have?
This makes it a not so exciting B&B. We have had breakfast at simple B&Bs, at Premier Inns, Staybridge Suites etc. with far more variety and better tasting breakfast!
We had really expected way more at a Michelin Star rated restaurant and 5-Star hotel!
As earlier stated, we paid £162/rm/day for a 2-night stay…Value for money? Not if you consider the lack of a Thermal suite in a 5-Star Trip Advisor rated hotel and the limited choice breakfast.
Not compared to other establishments we have been to.
For instance, we paid £267 total for 3 nights at the Doubletree by Hilton. This included a birthday dinner, full cooked buffet breakfast, Deluxe double room facing beautiful expansive grounds. Full use of the Spa, Gym, full Thermal suite with Jacuzzi, sauna, Hammam steam rooms and swimming pool. And the grounds are amazing. Plus, we got a Fantastic Exclusive Dinner for our party! Plus of course free parking! Yep, in the £267 all in price!
It also was family-friendly as we noticed several families with children enjoying a mid-week break too! The Grosvenor looked pretty much an adult people hotel.
The Chester Grosvenor FOOD- Dinner:
Pkjulesworld 4 Chillies
The food was cooked to perfection and we were also given a complimentary boatload of a variety of breads with butter. Thing is, we took these as starters, so ordered our mains immediately after thinking we did not need the menu listed starters after eating the bread. We were so wrong!
See, we had looked forward to the dinner so much so, we had fasted for the day… And…
Well, the mains portions were toddler sized and were dwarfed by the huge plates. Like a drop of decoration in the middle. It all looks so well presented…yet, seriously, a hungry toddler might find the mains portions lacking in size. At a minimum of £23.50 + VAT that is, Michelin star prices. 😊
That said, the taste and aromas could NOT be faulted at all. And we reckoned that if we had eaten a full starter, a main, a dessert plus the breads, we may not have minded those portions.
Suffice to say we recommend you order a starter, a main, a dessert and palate cleanser to have a full meal… And you might still feel like a bowl of chips could finish the meal off!!!
We would have given a full 5 Chillies if the breakfast was buffet style or full English as an option with your room rate. And the dinner mains portions a wee bit more generous.
Is the Chester Grosvenor Value for Money?
Frankly speaking for a touch of old world charm, the Chester Grosvenor reminded us of the Blackpool Britannia which we went to on our 10th Anniversary years ago.
It is a wee bit on the higher side if you KNOW exactly what you are getting i.e. a 5-Red-Star Hotel. The Michelin Star food is spot on though. If they can serve a full range of breakfast in the price and hopefully the flies were a one off occurrence. You would enjoy your stay at the Grosvenor Hotel, in Chester.
On that note, know that you can still go out there, Do You and Be Great, until we put Pen to e-paper again! 😉
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Pauli & Syl Kalungi