“ Kingsley guest house / 29 31 Marketgate / Arbroath / Angus / Scotland / Tel: 01241 873933 „
I was visiting some friends in Arbroath and decided to stay in Kingsley Guest House. The reviews seemed all over the place, but being a curious person, I decided to try it out for myself. I was pleasantly surprised that, while not 5 star accomodation, it wasn't shabby and "grotty" either. The owners were friendly, and even though the place is big (30 rooms, all en-suite, so he said) I didn't feel like I was being put into storage. The room was warm and comfortable, the en-suite a welcome addition, and all in all it was not a bad place to The breakfast, again while not gourmet, wasn't the worst I'd had by far.
So, in general, all in all, when you get down to it, all things considered, Kingsley Guest House is alright. Not fantastic but not shabby. A nice place to stay, at any rate, and I'd recommend it if you're looking for somewhere reasonably priced in Arbroath.
Back in June I attended a Ciao/Dooyoo review writers meet in Dundee which was organised by the lovely Belinda (belfin to you all) and wanted to stay in nearby Arbroath from Friday to Sunday so I could attend Belindas hen night celebrations. I didnt want anything too expensive but also wanted a little comfort and so thought a guesthouse would be my best bet.
So scouring the internet I came up with a few possibilities and this seemed ideal for my needs.
I used the www.hotelsandguesthouses.net website to search for my accommodation; this is where each guesthouse has their own advertising page and where you can contact them from. I decided upon Scurdy guesthouse. (I know this review is about Kingsley; all will be made clear as you read on)
I used the contact button to enquire about availability of a room about 4 weeks prior to my visit and to get a price. As they state on their page that prices are between £20 -£60 per night.
I received a reply within 24 hours confirming they did have a room available (ensuite at my request) including breakfast for only £25 per person per night (I was travelling alone so this suited me just fine) I quickly replied that I would like to book, and would they prefer to be paid in advance or on arrival, and received an email quite quickly that on arrival would be fine, and this could be in cash or debit/credit card. I opted for cash.
So the booking process was pretty easy and can also be done over the telephone if you prefer too.
On my arrival I knocked on the door to Scurdy house .to be met by Shahid the owner who asked me to pop to the guesthouse next door!?!? And left me standing there on the doorstep as he closed the door! I was a bit puzzled by this and so was Belinda who was sitting in her car after dropping me off. I explained what I had to do which was met by a raised eyebrow from Belinda and a bit of anxiety by myself .but knock on the guesthouse next door is what I did and the same person answered - Shahid again. He then explained that Scurdy and Kingsley (the house I was now in) were both his and some of the rooms in Scurdy were currently being renovated and so I would be more comfortable in Kingsley, for this he apologised. I didnt mind as long as I knew what was going on although a quick email advising me of this wouldnt have gone amiss. Shahid runs the two guesthouses with the help of his wife Naseem whom I only met once during my stay.
For the record its the same website and method of booking for Kingsley as for Scurdy. And both guesthouses I assume are to be made as one in the near future as the proprietor has only recently taken over both. They now boast 17 rooms of which 10 are ensuite.
Kingsley can be found at 29-31 Marketgate, Arbroath, Angus DD11 1AU
Telephone 01241 873933
The guesthouse is combined of rooms on the ground floor (ideal for wheelchair users) and then a quite steep staircase (with creaky floorboards) to the first floor where I was staying, and the more rooms at the top of the house. There is an adequate sized dining room for guests where breakfast is served between 8-10am and you can request a knock on the door for this if you require it. More on the breakfast later.
There is also a lounge for guests which has a huge pool table and seating area, this area also opens out onto the back garden which has a patio and a couple of plastic garden chairs. Nothing fancy here but cosy all the same.
I was given my key by Shahid on arrival which was a normal door key not the card keys as used by most hotels, and an absolutely huge keyring stating the name, address and phone number of the guesthouse on it no excuse for getting lost then a few of my companions at the meet did have a laugh at this! I was taken to my room by Shahid, who also carried my small weekend case for me, and he showed me where everything was, asked if it was to my satisfaction and then left, telling me when breakfast would be served and that I had my key for the outside door attached to my keyring also so I could come and go as I pleased.
On inspection the room was certainly clean and tidy enough, but quite basic too; but then, I wasnt really expecting anything more for the price I paid to be honest. The bed was a large comfy double with ample pillows and also an extra 2 in the cupboard. The bedclothes were clean and fresh smelling, very obviously laundered recently. The carpet was a basic cheap cord one but mostly clean apart from one small stain of which I have no clue as to what it was but didnt really bother me that much. The carpet however continued into the bathroom which is a pet hate of mine as I believe carpeting is slightly unhygienic in a bathroom. Tiles or even linoleum would have been better. The bathroom was clean and tidy with fresh towels supplied. The bath and sink were a turquoise blue colour but the toilet was a standard one with basic plastic white lid. No toiletries were available but that was ok as I had brought my own and if you did need anything then there were shops about 5mins walk from the house. There was also no shower in my room (not sure if there were any in other rooms) but there was a communal shower between the ground floor and my room (not sure if another is available in house) I was happy enough to use the bath as I preferred not to walk about half dressed having not brought a dressing gown with me and none were available. The bath was comfy enough and filled quickly.
Also in my room was a small 3 drawer dressing table which had a small portable TV and also the kettle on top. The small mirror was attached to the wall above this and was impossible to see because it was too high up for me (well I am only 51) So I removed it from its hook and sat it upon the window when I needed to use it. There was also a 2 door wardrobe one side for hanging garments with sufficient hangers for a few outfits. The other door had shelves, these had the extra pillows on them and space for your own clothes. There was 2 small bedside tables with drawers in them too, one of which had a desk lamp with an energy saving lightbulb, and the other housed the remote control for the television, a few leaflets for things to do in surrounding areas, and sat upon this was a tea tray with 2 cups and teabags, coffee sachets and milk and sugar sachets. You filled your kettle from the bathroom sink and there was a little notice asking you not to overfill as it caused spillages and to empty again afterwards. I imagine this is because of where the kettle was situated (next to the TV)
The duvet sets matched the curtains nicely and the only problem I could foresee was that the curtains were pretty lightweight and so would not hold out much early morning sunlight which I was proved right the next morning.
The only complaint I would have is that the floorboards were incredibly creaky in some places in the room and bathroom and should anyone have been below me then I would imagine this would have been rather annoying, in saying that I didnt really notice anyone above me so who knows.
Looking out the large bay windows of my room I had a street view but could also see over the top of adjacent houses and lots of rooftops etc with what I thought was a small castle in the background which I think is a water tower? (Belinda correct me if Im wrong here)
I had a very comfortable nights sleep here, aided by a few glasses of wine drunk with Belinda and her family and Chrissie (promotions_lass on Ciao) on the Friday night prior to the meet, and woke up bright and early on the Saturday morning to the sound of seagulls screeching and the sun shining in through my window (well Arbroath is a seaside town and I wasnt far from the beach) I had a quick bath and went downstairs for breakfast around 9am. This is where I met Ray, the larger than life and lovely female cook/housekeeper. She came over to my table and asked if I wanted a pot of tea or coffee and if Id like a full cooked breakfast and asked if there was anything I didnt want, I said no tomatoes please and she went off to the kitchen to cook it for me, she also pointed me in the direction of the cereals and toast. There was a selection of butters and jam/marmalade at each table in little baskets as well. And jugs of milk at the cereal table to help yourself to. Everything was lovely, the room was bright and airy with a few guests chatting away amicably, the tables and chairs were pine and quite comfortable. There was also patio door opening onto the garden where there were 2 small dogs yapping away (which I later found out belonged to two of the guests who bred dogs and were at a dog show) So pets are also welcome at this hotel which is a nice touch.
The food when it arrived was delicious, nothing fancy just a nice cooked full English, but cooked to perfection and not swimming in grease.
I never made it down to breakfast the next morning as I was feeling a little tender after the Hen Party! But when I did go downstairs to check out I was met again by Ray who was doing some ironing in the utility room and asked if I had enjoyed my stay and what time my bus was at to go home, she then said I could leave my luggage until I was ready to go if I had anything I had to do which was nice as I had planned to go for a coffee with Belinda and James again to say goodbye.
Checking out was simple, I just handed over my key and was wished a safe journey home and to keep them in mind should I return. Which I certainly would as there was a very friendly and ambient atmosphere to the place and is one which I would recommend to others as long as they are not looking for vast luxuries then this is definitely something to think about.
Thank you for reading