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Madison Inn Corus (Swindon)

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Oxford Road, Stratton St Margaret, Swindon, Wiltshire SN3 4TL. Phone: (44 1793) 831333. Fax: (44 1793) 831401. Stars: 3.

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      03.02.2001 17:03
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      The Madison Inn in Swindon is easy to find, just on the northern outskirts. Swindon has a huge hotel problem. There are always more people wanting to stay midweek than there are rooms available, so you do have to pay more than you would normally expect for a standard hotel. The Madison, however, does not overcharge too outrageously, and is very popular with visitors to the nearby Honda plants. Despite being part of the Corus group, it feels a little nicer, and is newer than most of their hotels. I had the impression that the hotel had undergone a recent facelift. Check in is swift and friendly, and the lobby area is pleasant with wing back chairs and an open fire. Free copies of The Telegraph are available, even on Sunday. Check out is just as painless. Rooms are a reasonable size with shower and bath. They have been decorated in a rather twee country style, but nothing too offensive. A major plus is the coffee percolator in each room, so you can brew fresh coffee for yourself. The biscuits are not up to Walkers shortbread standard, but a little two pack of oaty, honey or ginger ones! The TV offers terrestrial channels plus some sport and cable news, but no free movies. You can sign up for one or two films that are on video release, or a huge range of porn. This option adds £7.50 to your bill. Sadly the porn films have names like Erotic Collection 1-10, rather than entertaining titles like ‘Debbie Does Dallas’, or ‘The Adventures of Naughty Nina’, so I didn’t indulge. There is a tiny gym with a couple of running machines, and it doesn’t seem to get used much. There is no room service available, so if you’re eating in you need to go to ‘Tony Maloneys’. The idea of an Italian Irish restaurant struck me as odd, but the menu is like a cut down TGIF offering, with the emphasis on pasta, burgers and salad. Expect to pay around £15 for three courses, but as the appetizers are large, it’s unlikely that any but the most greedy person with have a starter and dessert. Make your decision early and stick to it. The desserts are all of the frozen calorie fest style, and very nice too. Breakfast is also served in the restaurant, and you can have the full English, or opt for cereal and fruit. The bar attached to the restaurant is relaxed and does draw external customers. On weekend nights they offer live music, so you may need to be careful in which room you choose if a good nights sleep is important. This shouldn’t be a problem as the hotel is very much a business place during the week, sio they offer huge discounts for weekend leisure guests to fill the rooms. The hotel has good meeting and conference room, with a dedicated break out room so you can get fresh tea, coffee and biscuits whenever you want. This end of the hotel is strictly business, and well designed for its’ purpose. Overall I’d recommend the Madison for both business and leisure stays. Madison Inn Corus OXFORD ROAD STRATTON ST MARGARET SWINDON, WILTSHIRE SN3 4TL ENGLAND (44 1793) 831333 Phone

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