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Knoll House Hotel

About Knoll House Hotel

  • high speed internet in room
  • swimming pool
  • free internet
  • restaurant
  • fitness center
  • bar lounge
  • spa
  • free parking
  • wifi
  • suites
  • public wifi
  • wheelchair access
  • free wireless internet in room
  • room service
  • non smoking rooms
  • non smoking hotel
  • laundry service
  • flatscreen tv
  • family rooms
  • breakfast buffet
  • outdoor pool
  • baggage storage
  • housekeeping
  • bottled water
  • coffee shop amenities
  • english amenities
  • fax photocopying
  • 24 hour front desk
  • game room
  • shared lounge tv area
  • sun loungers beach chairs
  • pets allowed
  • kids meals
  • sun terrace
  • beach
  • wine champagne
  • reduced mobility rooms
  • pool beach towels
  • hot tub
  • heated pool
  • indoor pool
  • kids activities
  • tennis court
  • babysitting
  • board games puzzles
  • kids outdoor play equipment

Reviews summary

4
Good
647 reviews
Brilliant
304
Good
173
Average
70
Poor
47
Awful
53

20 Traveller reviews from Holiday Watchdog

Return to Neverland

5
Brilliant
by
Reviewed 4th March 2013

"I love Knoll House. I'm not sure why. I think it's partly the sense of childhood memories it evokes, partly how easy the staff make everything for you and especially the fact that the kids are just over the moon every time we stay here. It's not for high-living luxury, or state of the art technology or trend-setting fashionability - you won't find these things here. It's just a lovely family holiday. The location speaks for itself. Overlooking the stunning Studland Bay in one direction and pretty Thomas Hardy country (or Enid Blyton - depending on your literary preferences) in the other. This year we stayed at Easter and the hotel did a brilliant easter egg hunt for the children in the gardens, with every child staying recieving their own personalised card from the Easter Bunny and bag of chocolate goodies. That, coupled with the kids disco and the childrens dining room (with the dessert buffet table every child's dream!) made the holiday perfect for our two girls (ages 6 & 3). That, and the adventure playground. And the easy walk to the beach. And the fact we can have the dog with us. And the woods for exploring behind the hotel. And the swimming pool. And the fact that the maids had tucked their teddy bears up in bed when we got back to the hotel room at the end of each day. When you go to Knoll House you are immersed in another world. It's a rather quirky world: idiosyncratic and old fashioned (but in a good way). A world that doesn't change too much over the years - no tv's in the bedrooms here. A world that many people choose to go back to year in year out. We have. And I hope we will again. It is not cheap. But it is a wonderful escape."

Holiday details

  • Travel date: 8th July 2009

A Happy Time

5
Brilliant
by
Reviewed 4th March 2013

"We have just spent a lovely long weekend with the grandchildren (aged 3 and 5) here. It is like a trip back to the 1950's, in the best sense. Very child-orientated, but quite a few couples sans children enjoying it. Large outdoor pool, small indoor one, both 29 degrees, adventure playground, lovely grounds and adventure walks, large field for rounders etc. The food is good (hors d'oeuvres excellent) but not haute cuisine. Don't come expecting boutique luxury, but it is comfortable, clean and the staff, without exception, are all marvellous, couldn't be more helpful. Lots of them, especially on the children side, which is probably the main reason why the costs are high. Oh, and across the road is the superb Studland beach, the surrounding area is idyllic and full of interest."

Holiday details

  • Travel date: 19th June 2009

We wish we could have afforded to stay longer

4
Good
by
Reviewed 1st March 2013

"Just back from a 3 night stay at The Knoll House Hotel with my husband and dog. The location is fantastic - a short walk from the beach; views across to Poole, Bournemouth, IOW and Old Harry's Rocks from our bedroom; bus stops right outside the hotel to Swanage or Bournemouth. Also, this is terrific walking country - we didn't use our car at all during our stay. The staff are all polite and friendly and as for the food...we, including the dog, were in heaven! My husband has to have a dairy-free diet and he was impressed to be offered soya milk. There was such a superb choice on the menu (we stayed on a half-board basis-dbb) that he could nearly always find something to suit him. If he couldn't, the chefs would sort out something that did! Dogs can sleep in your room - THIS IS A VERY DOG-FRIENDLY HOTEL - for £5/night. Included in this is a dishful of quality scraps of meat each day. Our dog is a fussy eater, but he soon polished off this daily treat! The outdoor pool was heated, we didn't have time to use the spa. Ok, so the decor is a bit out-of-date and tired in places, and you have to pay extra for tea/coffee-making facilities in your room, and there is no hair-dryer or tv (there is a radio, and a super tv room downstairs) or shampoo/shower gel, and there are no locks on the doors, but the bed was SO big and comfortable that we slept extremely well. Finally, do try to get them to reduce the price as only then is it really value for money."

Holiday details

  • Travel date: 29th May 2009

We did not want to come away and return to the 'Rat Race Pace of Life'.

5
Brilliant
by
Reviewed 1st March 2013

"After reading some of the previous reviews for this hotel, I was concerned when my partner told me he had booked a night away for us at this hotel. However, I can honestly say that we enjoyed our time so much in the beautiful surroundings and relaxed but efficient atmosphere, that the next morning we asked if it would be possible for us to stay another night. The staff are so polite and helpful, the room was welcoming/clean and tidy, the location of this hotel is perfect for stunning views and for visiting great local scenery ie Swanage/Corfe/Lulworth etc. We were suprised that there really were no televisions in the bedroom, (they are available for hire), but I have to say once we had accepted this unusual practice it was quite refreshing to not have the usual hum drum way of life. We spent time socialising in the lounges talking to people etc rather than sitting in front of a screen. The decor will seem dated if you are used to chrome and glass/minimalistic styled hotel chain designs. This is a well established family run hotel, very cosy and welcoming to all (including dogs & children), a quirky reminder of more innocent times and we are looking forward to returning here very soon."

Holiday details

  • Travel date: 6th May 2009

Musty smell

3
Average
by
Reviewed 19th February 2013

"We were looking for a hotel for a family get together. My husband and I popped in for a coffee but were told as we were not resident then coffee or tea was not served until 3.45. It was 2.pm at this time. As soon as we stepped into the hotel we smelt an old musty smell. The furniture looked comfortable but very dated. I have looked at the photos of this hotel on TA and decided that the hotel is not for us. The receptionist was very pleasant. I am sure it is a popular hotel for families although under 5's are not allowed in the main dining room instead they have a separate dining room. We carried on to Corfe for our coffee."

Holiday details

  • Travel date: 20th April 2009

How Rude is this

1
Awful
by
Reviewed 1st February 2013

"I made an enquiry about staying at this hotel. Can you imagine my horror when the hotel E Mailed me to say "Thank you for your e-mail. I regret to say that we are full for the dates you mention. Being August Bank Holiday weekend you have no real hope of getting in anywhere decent for only two nights; certainly not in a holiday or coastal area. (My personal advice, if I may offer it, is to give up now.) " I could not believe this and feel that if this is indicative of the service you get at the hotel then I have had a close escape. I have justed booked a SPA break on the Suffolk Coast."

Holiday details

  • Travel date: 13th August 2008

quaint and over priced

4
Good
by
Reviewed 19th January 2013

"We stayed with all of our family for 4 days ,6 adults two grand children.It was on the whole enjoyable,although i do feel the room my son had plus the room for the children was small and in need of redecoration.We had a room on the front with excellent views across to the I o Wight .the facilities are ok and having the childrens dinning was helpfull.The food average was not as good as expected.There is a time element to every thing eg last time down for dinner 8.15 and very few stayed up to use the bar which generally closed at 10.30. It was like being in a club most of the families we encountered had been going for years so to critised it was not the done thing. Overall it was enjoyable ,the pitch and put course was good fun but how they can charge what they do is amazing ,to me its over priced by about £50/100 per day .But whilst there are familys like us who will pay --good luck to them"

Holiday details

  • Travel date: 10th July 2008

Not worth the money!

1
Awful
by
Reviewed 24th January 2013

"I'm afraid I just don't get it! This is a very expensive hotel but I've no idea why! It's no more child friendly than many others. Knoll House is just as popular with the very elderly. The food is AWFUL and the rooms are very plain indeed. The decor throughout is very dated. The food was our greatest disapointment. The aim is to get you away from your table as quickly as possible. Food arrives at your table within minutes of ordering, nothing is cooked to order it's all pre-cooked and warmed through. Very poor indeed. The staff are mainly very young students, on a gap year or working the season. Not a great problem but makes for some clumsy service Child care is advertised whilst you take lunch. Watching DVD's with the childrens dining room waitresses is not very imaginative. The mix of ages in the very small creche made it difficult for our 2 year old to play. Larger children, charging about, made us worry somewhat as did the very young and seemingly inexperienced staff. The nearby beach is fantastic but that's about it as a positive. We spoke with many people who came back year after year but they should maybe try one of the many other hotels that specifically cater for children."

Holiday details

  • Travel date: 22nd June 2008

Great Family Holiday

5
Brilliant
by
Reviewed 26th January 2013

"The Knoll House is a state of mind as much as a hotel. For my family (3 kids under 9) it is the week they most look forward to in their year. As their father this more than compensates for the various shortcomings (detailed in the other reviews). My children LOVE this place, as I did when I was taken there 35 years ago. It has hardly changed. All the negative things are probably true, and I could add a few of my own. Why 2 or 3 types of potato with the the evening meal? But these say as much about the reviewers and their misplaced expectations as they do about the place. This is a hotel that helps parents really enjoy their children by quietly taking all the irritating tasks away, and creating an environment where the kids feel welcomed, included and celebrated. So God Bless the Knoll House - may it never change."

Holiday details

  • Travel date: 19th April 2008

NO value for money

1
Awful
by
Reviewed 18th January 2013

"This Hotel is just really too expensive. Pluses are the location, the seize and lay out of family room, the playground, hot showers with abundant water. the lovely personnel in the kids area and the baby listening (a lady actually sitting outside your room with a book) . However, the decor is really appalling (I have never seen anything as distasteful in my life), the bathroom is incredibly tiny and cheap, no toiletproducts, the beds are crap (small and very hard), no telly, the food is so so (no fresh fish, it tasted all the same like it came from Knorr), the pool is tiny, full of chloride and is absolutely full in the 2 hours it is opened for kids (empty all the other hours). In the dining room there's an amazing amount of personnel, but they are not very efficient. We were asked 4 times what we would like to drink, and then were brought the wrong drink. It was hilarious, and normally we don't care since they were very kind. But at such a rate you expect a lot more ! We were rushed all the time and we felt the place was like a prison camp: breakfast from 8.00 till 8.45 (why so early and short). Lunch from 1.30 till 2.30 for kids, for parents from 2 till 3 I think, but they will only look after your kids till 2, so we never had time for a pudding. We really like to have lunch with our children, but you're not allowed to (excuse me, it's my holiday too you know). In the evening you have more time, luckily. One night the famous Magnus family was in the dining room to meet and greet the guests. They looked us up and down disapprovingly (i wore jeans, I admit, but really nice earrings, honestly!!) and did not talk nor smile. Really no added value there at all. You felt like a kid who's just been told off. I just can't believe how this hotel gets away with charging a whopping 1800 pounds full board for 4 night, 4 people (of which 2 children) for such poor performance. Quite a lot of people seem to love it, but I really can't see why. We still had a great time because of the lovely area. But the hotel certainly needs to assess itself."

Holiday details

  • Travel date: 30th March 2008

Two have fun in Dorset!

5
Brilliant
by
Reviewed 29th December 2012

"Knoll House Hotel is a fabulous hotel that has been run by the Ferguson family for 75 years-no mean feat! Check out the great black and white photographs of various Fergusons across the years-great stuff. We loved the 1950s `cocktail hour `pics! Also check out the Enid Bylton connection-she was a great Knoll House fan and stayed here many times and Knoll House is mentioned in the new biography `Looking for Enid` by Duncan McClaren. Dogs and children are equally important at Knoll and the hotel boasts a childrens chef and dining room ,with yummy healthy kiddies food. Families return year after year and the hotel is quirky and retro in all the right ways. Good fresh food simply prepared and a great wine list too. A great range of facilities for all ,including indoor and outdoor pools, steam room, jacuzzi and sauna and beauty treatments for the grownups. We loved our newly-furbished room at the front of the hotel with great views over the crescent of sand to the Isle of Wight. No tellies in the rooms (a widescreen downstairs though so don`t panic!),but retro Roberts Radios. The staff are second to none and staying at Knoll feels like returning to a fabulous family home with all those extra ingredients. Perfect for `yummy mummies` and entourage! Take granny too, and also do take the ferry at Sandbanks-the best way to hit Studland and like us spend your days walking for miles on pale sand, then returing for martinis by the fire ! Go!"

Holiday details

  • Travel date: 13th November 2007

Knoll House Rocks!

5
Brilliant
by
Reviewed 21st January 2013

"Have just returned from a half term break with 3 children ( 5yrs,3yrs and 10 months) at Knoll house and can say, without reservation, that it was fantastic. lets cut to the chase, as a mother of 3 small children, I do not care about state of the art sound systems or luxurious clean white dressing gowns in my room (save that for the procreation weekend away). What I do care about is a fabulously efficient, wonderfully clean and amazingly child orientated hotel. I went in October half term with my mother, who (strictly between us) is absolutely hopeless with helping with childcare. My husband was tied up at work and rather than face a week of full on childcare (and I include my mother as my forth child!) I thought we would stay full board at knoll house for half term. The service is wonderful, food is fantastic (think 1950'5 post war comfort), and the childcare (included free of charge) is second to none. My mother and I ate lunch and dinner in peace whilst my children were looked after by a bevy (what is the collective name for a group of pretty nannies?) of lovely girls who made it their business to ensure my children were entertained and that we were not disturbed during lunch or dinner. I have to admit that I did become slightly delerious from the joy of eating two uninteruppted meals a day, maybe I am still high from that experience, but what a treat! Met some really lovely families and enjoyed all the hotel facilities and surrounding countryside. I have stayed at many of the usual family friendly hotels (Babington House, Ickworth, Saunton Sands, Wolley Grange) and I can say without a shadow of a doubt that : Compared to Babington (I ldo really love this hotel and if money were no object..............)- Knoll House is loads cheaper, and much more of a break for a parent with all the staff help at Knoll House Compared to Ickworth- Oh come on! Ickworth is a pretentious overpriced joke of a hotel with hideously useless staff but who are lucky enough to be in amazingly gorgeous surroundings (courtesy of the National Trust) that keep people returning Compared with Saunton Sands, Devon- Similar overall but Knoll House is more friendly, intimate and child centered Compared with Wolley Grange- no comparison, Knoll House wins hands down By the way, the 24/7 access kitchen at Knoll House (where you can get tea, coffee, fruit, baby food and cereal) is absolutely spotless and one of the few places I have seen where you could really eat your food off the floor! Lynne, who is in charge of the Children's kitchen should be cloned and placed in every NHS ward in the country to tackle issues of cleanliness and MRSA! In short a fab holiday for the sleep deprived, 'I need a break 'mother."

Holiday details

  • Travel date: 4th November 2007
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Knoll House Hotel is also called

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