11 Traveller reviews from Holiday Watchdog
Noisey firedoor slammed all night and rain on scaffolding kept us awake
"I was really looking forward to the two night break as both my husband and I were really tired and ready for one. On the first night the internal firedoor was banged every time a guest went through it. Clearly the hotel is aware it is a problem asw they have put notices on it asking guest to shut it quietly. We mentioned this to a member of staff behind the desk and he said he would look into it. No action was taken. There was scaffolding outside our room, which was not mentioned at the time of booking. The second night was also sleepless beecause of the banging door and the heavy rain on the scaffolding. I wrote to the manager, who offered a cream tea as compensation, but it really does not compensate at all. the lack of sleep completely ruined the break."
- Travel date: 20th November 2012
Signs, signs everywhere but not an ounce of service...
"This hotel promised so much but delivered very little. It is supposed to be 4 star but I have never stayed in a 4 star hotel where the guest has to switch the heating on themselves - in the middle of November - and then find wander aimlessley around the corridors whilst the room warmed up. Free champagne was included within the break I booked. Not sure if it was thrift on the part of FJB hotels or a genuine desire to present the guest with cold fizz, but there was a charming laminated note in the room which said that we had to ring reception to ask for the bottle to be delivered! Would it have been so troublesome for it to have been waiting on ice for us? Call me a sceptic but I think they plan on some people being so embarrased that they don't ask for what should be a nice touch on the part of the hotel. Breakfast is a pleasant affair and served in the main restaurant. It was amusing to see another table table of guests ask the waiter for some toast only to be told that it was a self service buffet and point towards one of the industrial sized toasters which made the entire room wreek of burning bread. The guests themselves took great pleasure in pointing the waiter to his own menu which states that table service is available if you ask the staff.... Three further interesting areas: 1. The room This was adequately sized but had a nasty 1980s suspended ceiling. Given that the hotel is aiming for the 4* market and is quite a grand building, this seemed incongruous. The shaving mirror in the bathroom was a nice touch - what a shame it was taking the plaster off the wall! If cleanliness is next to godliness then the chambermaids are on their way to a very warm place indeed. DUST everywhere- how pleasant when you're paying those sort of prices to be surrounded by the previous occupants' dead skin cells. The piece de resistance, however, was the charming aluminium secondary glazed door which lead to the balcony. Either side were lovely picture windows - with delightful views of the water and in the middle was a hideous carbuncle which was only outdone by the aforementioned ceiling tiles. 2. The health club Modern, bright and clearly based on the Crossroads Motel gym. I kept expecting Amy Turtle to wander through in a towel and dressing down. I have never seen so many home made signs in one building before: do not shave in the changing rooms; do not allow your children to use the swimming pool without a waterproof nappy; do not take towels onto the beach; do not take crockery onto the beach and my personal favourite: do not leave newspapers in the sauna. This must be exteremly important to the hotel management as the same sign is displayed TWICE in the same sauna. Well, I call it a sauna, but since there was a gap underneath the door which let the warm air escape, perhaps I should be referring to it as a vaguely warm room. And oh the joy of using a hotel gym and being expected to PAY for the use of the lockers. Perhaps they should charge for the use of the loos. On the other hand, perhaps they should CLEAN the toilets rather than developing a strategy for relieving the customers of even more cash. 3. The restaurants. The main restaurant was actually rather nice and the food on both evenings was delicious. And what a view! Through the large windows you could see.....the other - more expensive restaurant! Obviously an extension of the original building, the views from the tables in there must have been amazing! Indeed they are amazing - I remember saying that to my companion as we walked through there to get to the leisure club of many signs. Yes, dear reader, in a 4 star hotel the guest is expected to walk THROUGH the restaurant to get to the leisure club. There can be nothing like the smell of freshly cooked fish, fine French wine, the company of the person you love and....the stench of chlorine and people in leisure wear. Charm and elegance personified. DO NOT VISIT THIS HOTEL IF YOU ARE EXPECTING SOMETHING SPECIAL. It is adequate in many respects, good in terms of food (but I have eaten better in the local area) and terrible in many others."
- Travel date: 19th November 2006
"We had our wedding there in early September & I can't praise the place enough. Staff bent over backwards to satisfy all our needs. Nothing was too much trouble. Food was excellent. Service flawless. We also used their catamaran for the afternoon & the general manager even came down to Poole quay to make sure everything was ok for us onboard."
- Travel date: 26th October 2006
Very much depends on your room
"I stayed at the Haven for 2 nights in September as part of a work team building exercise. Having read some of the reviews on this site I was very pleasantly surprised with my room - it was lovely! I had a family room (which has a seperate single room leading off from the entrance hall) on the first floor. The room was a good size and it had a wrap around balcony with a sun lounger and a wonderful view over the bay. There was a plasma tv and the bathroom was very modern and clean. Given the standard prices charged though I was surpised that there were no bathrobes and bottled water provided with the room. Overall though I was very happy with my room and the food provided in the evenings was very nice too and the hotel is in a great location. However some of my work colleagues have different experiences - including ironically my boss, who ended up in a pocky little room over looking the car park and which hadn't been updated in years. There was also some problems with reception and a colleague was given the key to the boss's room and walked in on him as he came out of the shower - taking team building a little too far in my opinion! So my advice when booking this hotel would be to specify that you want one of the renovated rooms and that you want a view of the harbour. If you get this then you will have a much nicer stay than if you find yourself in one of the 'old' rooms."
- Travel date: 22nd October 2006
"Having read some of the disparaging remarks about The Haven before signging in, I did wonder what I was letting myself in for! I need not have worried! It was a lovely experience - extremely friendly and helpful staff, great food, wonderful location, our room was lovely too, though the bathroom was a bit small but extremely well equipped. The spa too was a lovely experience. So all in all, a truly lovely weekend, which I hope to repeat in the not too distant future. PA London"
- Travel date: 8th October 2006
Disappointed with our stay
"We booked the Haven requesting a sea-view and balcony as we wanted comfort and relaxation. We normally stay in a Travel Inn in Christchurch when we visit the area, but thought the extra cost worth it for our three-day break. Our room would probably have been fashionable in the 70s and to reach it the corridors were carpeted with at least four different designs, each in a worse state of repair. The toilet seat was white plastic - the balcony only two foot wide with no possible way you could sit out - the sea view was marred by the rear of a neaby building's extraction and refuse disposal. The breakfast was disappointing and a room-service tray remained outside one of the neighbouring rooms for several hours. We understand the hotel is part of a group but we checked out another one and found little difference. We found the whole experience unsatisfactory and over-priced and left a day early. We will be back at the Travel Inn next time which, at over Â£100 per night cheaper, offers immaculate cleanliness and modern furnishings."
- Travel date: 6th September 2006
Haven from home!
"Just returned from another fantastic stay at the Haven Hotel, Poole. Every visit brings another aspect of this hotelâs wonderful facilities to light. Where to start .... Many of the rooms host the most breathtaking views over Poole harbour, Brownsea Island and over to the Isle of Purbeck, which can also be enjoyed from the hotels lounge and dining facilities. Breakfasts are great, and during my last trip we enjoyed it on our private balcony overlooking the sea. Dinner at the Havens individually styled La Roche Brasserie is a certain highlight, offering great food from an imaginative and unique menu. The new cocktail menu at the bar certainly proved a hit with my party! (A must try is the Haven Royale). Many of the bedrooms have just seen a revamp and now offer a stylish and contemporary feel, whilst maintaining the homely warmth of this great hotel. Definitely one not to miss."
- Travel date: 5th September 2006
Haven puts Corporate Booking above full-price guests
"On first sight you think you're in heaven. The location is stunning but so are the prices (Â£280.00) per person per night for a rather ordinary room with sea view without balcony. Then you find out that, when you made your booking, they didn't tell you that the wonderful, ocean-facing sun deck and a la carte restaurant aren't actually available to you on the prime Saturday evening as they have been reserved as part of a corporate booking to a local maker of up-market boats. Funny how that wasn't mentioned when we had a choice of where to stay. The car park was always full with the other functions such as weddings that seem to be running all the time. The valet staff did their best to be helpful. The breakfast service was generally good but service for the rest of the facilities can be very indifferent. In my opinion, way overpriced and the corporate bookings fiasco summarises this hotel's attitude to its normal guests."
- Travel date: 20th July 2006
Really enjoyable stay
"I stayed here with some trepidation having read previous reviews. I stayed in a standard room with my young daughter which overlooked the car park. I asked for and was given a refurbished room. It was very clean and had a plasma screen tv on the wall and a modern cd player. The bathroom was also clean. The bed was very comfy with a lovely warm quilt. All rooms are now non smoking. They are now refurbishing the sea view rooms and I looked round one which was being done and they are stunning, especially the corner rooms which give a panoramic view. The location of this hotel is special - the views are amazing and you can walk for miles along the beach towards Bournemouth or take the ferry to Studland. The spa has an outdoor pool, sauna, steam room and hot tub and hot drinks here are complimentary. The pool is not really big enough for the children to play in and the people to swim legnths although there are adult only sessions. We ate in the restaurant both nights and the food was lovely and about Â£20 for 2 courses inc coffee and children can eat off the adult menu for Â£9. The staff here were really friendly. Breakfast was varied and tasty with the same friendly staff. My key card gave up working twice and which was a pain. The staff in the spa area were elusive and not overly friendly although the girl giving out the towels was nice. The floors are a bit creaky and there are a few old doors and widows remaining but overall I was really impressed with the hotel. The decor is stunning and I will certainly return."
- Travel date: 13th April 2006
"Just spent one night here - paid for by my company - the yearly "do". We were given a "good room" with a sea view. I happen to know the price they paid, and, believe me, it was not worth it. I have spent nights in far far superior rooms for a lot less Â£. The room smelt bad, dusty and smokey (I am a non smoker). The bedspread took much to be desired. The carpets were very very old as was the whole contents of the room. Probably not been decorated for at least 20 years, it had not been cleaned properly either. The food was poor, main course very poor, and we were only saved by the cheese and biscuits last course! Breakfast was passable but everything looked slightly past it's "best before" date - especially the fruit. The whole hotel is "grubby" and needs totally gutting and re decorating and furnishing. It would have been OK being old, but it had not been cleaned. I would never recommend this place to anyone - even though I was told the "back rooms" have been refurbished the rest of the hotel takes much to be desired. Staff all untrained and scruffy. I cannot imagine that this place ever gets any return customers. You do get a sea view, but it really is not worth having to put up with that room for."
- Travel date: 15th January 2006
Great location ... very poor bedroom
"An unbeatable location, good public rooms and okay service let down by one of the worst bedrooms I have seen for a hotel at this room rate. The fantastic sea view just couldn't make up for the small size & general 'tired' decoration of the badly mis-named 'executive' room I booked. In fact, how they have the nerve to call this room by that title is beyond me. Even the most basic motel room is 5-star in comparision. This hotel could be one of the best in Britain given it's superb setting. However, if my bedroom was anything to go by, it represents very bad value for money. I won't be a guest again until the facilities 'upstairs' are given a total overhaul to bring them from the 'Seventies into the 21st Century."
- Travel date: 22nd October 2005
Haven Hotel is also called
- The Haven Hotel
- haven poole
- haven hotel poole