10 Traveller reviews from Holiday Watchdog
Excellent seaside hotel
"We enjoyed a lovely stay at this charming hotel; the location simply couldn't have been better and the facilities and service made this a much better experience than the "pubby" type of lodging we'd been expecting. The new Australian manager has clearly brought a very professional and refreshing approach to customer service, and all of the staff were helpful and flexible--no complaints at all. Our room was very well equipped and thoughtfully provided with the little details that make all the difference on a long trip--hot chocolate drinks included with the in-room refreshment pack, high quality biscuits which were replaced each day, and a plasma screen TV with a remote that wasn't broken and sellotaped up for once! The room itself was very spacious and had a huge and clean bathroom. Breakfast too, was faultless. Cereals, fresh and dried fruit, and good quality yoghurts and juices were all provided buffet-style, and the cooked options were excellent and all done to order. I tried both the full English (which was very full) and the home-made kippers, which were delicious and to be recommended. We ate dinner in the hotel a couple of times--the menu has a nice range and the food was excellent. As other reviewers have pointed out, there is no car-park, but they gave us free vouchers to use in the local council-run car park which was a minute's walk away and very secure. We had no problems finding space there, and found parking a non-issue. It's very nice to have nothing to complain about in a hotel for once and we'll be very happy to return if we get the chance."
- Travel date: 3rd September 2008
Enjoyable seaside experience
"We were staying in a hotel just outside Margate in August 2007 and visited Broadstairs during the 2007 Folk festival week. We enjoyed the atmosphere around the town so much that we decided to stay in Broadstairs for a long weekend during the 2008 folk festival. The Royal Albion seemed the ideal location given its position overlooking Viking Bay and central to the folk week activities. The lack of hotel parking was not a significant problem as you simply obtain a free daily permit from hotel reception to park in the public car park at the bottom of Albion Street (50 yards away). The car park was full and we had to wait 10 minutes before we got a parking place on the Friday afternoon. This was hardly a hardship as everything we wanted was within walking distance of the hotel and therefore we did not intend to use the car for the rest of the weekend. Our double room on the second floor overlooked the garden and Viking bay and had clearly been recently refurbished. The room was compact but very clean and tidy. Bathroom items were replaced daily as were the tea/coffee/chocolate making materials. Plenty of hot water, comfortable bed, some sky sports channels. You could even sit on the toilet and enjoy the sea view. Breakfast was excellent and we were lucky enough on all three mornings to be able to have a very leisurely breakfast outside on the veranda. Although a few non-residents come in to have breakfast, tables are reserved for the residents on the veranda if the weather is ok, so there was no difficulty in obtaining an ideal location from which to watch the world go by. The hotel staff were very friendly and helpful and were not flustered by the large number of customers drinking and eating during the weekend. The 'folk' groups that the hotel engaged during the festival (each afternoon and another each evening) attracted a large crowd. This all added to the atmosphere. You could also watch the Morris dancers performing just outside the hotel. We hope to return to the Royal Albion for the Folk Festival in 2009. I feel that the Royal Albion is an integral part of the 'Broadstairs experience' so even if you do not stay there, go and relax while enjoying a drink outside on a sunny afternoon or warm evening. They are currently refurbishing and expanding the kitchens in the hotel, so the dinner menu is currently very limited. Not a problem, as there are lots of good restaurants within easy walking distance. The Tamarind Indian restaurant across the road serves excellent Indian food with a British twist. Osteria Posillipo Pizzeria, an Italian restaurant next door to the Royal Albion is very popular and always busy. The Tandoori restaurant at the bottom of Albion street ia also very popular. The eating possibilities are endless, but I strongly advise that you book in advance. In summary, the Royal Albion appears to be a well run, friendly and an ideal place to stay in Broadstairs. The garden has been completely redesigned and much improved since being taken over by Shepherd Neame and I suspect there will be further improvements by the time we visit again next year."
- Travel date: 13th August 2008
Serious potential but lets itself down!
"Hotel is in a lovely spot and when the weather is nice it really is delightful to wake up and look out at Viking Bay. We just couldn't help but feel however that for Â£120 per night the food in the restaurant should be better than pub grub! To be honest that doesn't really do justice to some great pub grub."
- Travel date: 28th July 2008
Good Service but poor parking
"Stayed during the August 2007 Folk Week. Hotel room good with great sea view but pricey (Â£137 pn b & b for 2). Breakfast excellent, service very good, staff very helpful and friendly. Main problem is parking. Reception staff told us that when Shepherd Neame bought the hotel earlier this year they closed the car park. You now have to park on double yellow lines outside the hotel whilst collecting a free permit to park in one of the town's very few car parks. We eventually managed to park in one about 10 -1 5 minutes walk from the hotel."
- Travel date: 15th August 2007
"I would just like to redress the balance a little. We have stayed at the Royal Albion several times, and twice in 2006. We found the staff very friendly and helpful, our children were given buckets and spades as a wellcome.. We have always stayed in the 2 bedroom 2 bathroom seaview suite, which is not cheap, but is certainly not extortionate either. This is a fairly small family hotel so what some staff may lack in 'professionalism' they make up for in helpfulness in our opinion. The evening menu is a little low on choice, and does not change very often, but what they do they do very well. In any case, the Italian next door - 'Posillipo' is great and has a big sea facing terrace. Next door again, in what used to be 'Marchesi' there is a more swanky Italian. Opposite the hotel the Indian is first class as well. A few steps along the promenade is the famous 'Morellis' ice cream parlour which has hardly changed since I was a child and still produces excellent home made ices. The beach is uncrowded and clean, so basically it is No.1 all round for young children. This is not a 'luxury' hotel, has no lifts (good for you) anyway they will always carry your bags if you are feeling lazy. I wish there were more like it on the Kent coast."
- Travel date: 4th July 2007
Great potential but oddly unsatisfying
"Stayed one night in a clean, comfortable room with a superb view across Viking Bay. Our room was quiet, without the annoying random thuds and clinks that afflict some hotels. However a few problems let down what could be a wonderful hotel in a superb location. Firstly, the hotel currently has no car park, so you have to obtain a voucher from reception and then find a space in a public car park several minutes walk from the hotel (hopefully this is a temporary system). Secondly, our phone had been left programmed with a 7am alarm so we were woken unexpectedly - is this a fault or a practical joke? Thirdly, the hotel feels like it's a local institution and clearly welcomes locals who use it as a coffee-shop and bar; but it needs to pay more attention to making guests feel at home. Breakfast was a textbook example of how to make customers feel awkward: we had to ask for drinks, then ask for toast and then ask for butter to spread on it."
- Travel date: 7th May 2007
Ideally located hotel in delightful resort
"We enjoyed a couple of nights in a third floor room with bay window overlooking the sandy Viking Bay with a view of Dickensâs Bleak House dramatically floodlit at night. The room was very clean and in good decorative order. Note â no lift. Broadstairs is a traditional seaside resort with Punch & Judy shows, bucket and spade shops, a childrenâs play area with trampolines etc. None of the brash arcades and chain restaurants of busier seaside towns. Breakfast here was delicious, and so nice to be able to sit outside on sunnier mornings looking out to sea. Marchesiâs restaurant a couple of doors away under the same ownership, is an extremely pleasant place to spend the evening. We would advise though not to opt for the Dinner Bed & Breakfast deal, as your menu will be a printed sheet of limited options covering the cheaper dishes from the main menu. Other diners not on this deal will be choosing from the full âleather-boundâ menu making you feel like a poor relation! Far better to book Bed & Breakfast only â you can then dine here and still opt for the cheaper dishes if you prefer. Excellent food of a high standard anyway, and again the option of sitting outside on warmer evenings or at lunch time. Would also recomment Morelliâs Ice-Cream Parlour for a nostalgic step back in time. A great place to enjoy a cappuccino or âproperâ soft ice-cream cornet. Didnât really use Ballards, the downstairs bar, other than for an afternoon cup of tea, but it was very popular with most of the outside tables full at lunch-times and early evening during the better weather. Would definitely return."
- Travel date: 19th August 2005
Terribly overpriced, unwelcoming.
"This Hotel is quite badly run and the prices are extortionate. We could have had a fortnight all inclusive abroad for the money we paid for the week we stayed there. If we had of eaten there also, we would have been broke. The rooms are small and stuffy and tea, coffee, shampoo etc was never replaced in the room. The food is very expensive and some of the staff are quite unwelcoming. It seems that they are only interested in getting people into the bar at night and don't care about residents."
- Travel date: 11th August 2005
An old fashioned hotel in a lovely location
"The Royal Albion Hotel is a situated in a delightful position right in the middle of the Viking bay. If you ask for a room facing the bay you will enjoy a truly lovely view. The hotel occupies a Victorian property and as most hotels of this kind in Britain it's a little bit of a maze inside. Expect sloping and creaky floors, but this is all part of its charm. The staff are very friendly and efficient and the English breakfast is excellent. Rooms are reasonably well equipped with TV, coffee making facilities, hair dryer, etc. I really wanted to rate this establishment above average, but my room looked a bit tired and was a bit smelly too. The carpet needed changing or shampooing and the lingering, musty, smell let down an otherwise above average establishment. Be prepared to put up with a little bit of noise too as the hotel is very centrally located and Broadstairs can get very busy, but this is a minor point."
- Travel date: 28th July 2005
"This is the big hotel (for the town) in a prominent position overlooking Viking Bay in Broadstairs. Charles Dickens apparently is also a fan. I have stayed here twice in the only suite. It is a tad old-fashioned (neo-flock rather than neo-vintage) but very well maintained and very clean. Most rooms have a fantastic view over the bay. You will enjoy a couple of days here if you quite like the quintessential English seaside resort which is a)not trashy like Margate or b)all posh like Whitstable. Hotel provides baby alarms so it also possible to leave the kids in the hotel room and have a meal in an adjoining restaurant also owned by the hotel. If the kids wake-up or stir, the receptionist lts you know Incidentally, the Marchesi Restaurant does not dole out typical hotel food but makes a reasonable attempt at something a bit finer."
- Travel date: 27th April 2005
Royal Albion Hotel is also called
- royal albion hotel broadstairs
- royal albion hotel
- albion hotel broadstairs