“ Address: St Nicholas Cliff / Scarborough / North Yorkshire / YO11 2EU / Tel: 0871 984 6430 „
Firstly, I will start by saying - we have stayed at this Travelodge twice. Once back in 2011, when it was still fairly new and fresh, and then again recently at the end of April.
A little bit of information about the Travelodge firstly. It is in a lovely location in Scarborough, situated on St Nicholas Cliff on the South Bay. It is directly opposite The Grand, and a short walk from both the town and the Cliff Lift down to the sea front. It has 140 rooms across 5 floors, with disabled access rooms also. There are 2 lifts servicing the different floors. There is a bar/cafe, which provides drinks and standard pub-style food, and there is also a large breakfast room. Breakfast is provided for a charge (which is cheaper if previously booked online), and 2 children can eat free per paying adult. Breakfast is buffet style, with a range of cereals available, toast and preserves, as well as cooked breakfasts. Something to suit all. Also you are able to check in from 3pm and check out is at 12pm the morning after. Early check-in / late check-out is available in some hotels for an additional fee.
Right, our experiences. I will start with our first trip back in May 2011. This was our first short trip away with our daughter - then aged 11 months. We have stayed at numerous Travelodges over the years, with mixed experiences. We booked the Scarborough one simply because it was cheap and cheerful - we paid £44 for 2 nights (midweek) which, when teamed with very cheap train travel, worked out at a good budget break for the price. We arrived to a warm welcome, shortly after check-in time of 3pm, by excellent front of house staff - they were pleasant and professional, and quickly dealt us our keycards (we got 2, just in case!). We made our way to the lift (which you needed a keycard to activate operation for from the ground floor), which was very very small. We were crammed in - 2 adults, 1 small child, a small case and a folded pushchair - they are not big lifts at all. But it worked and it got us to where we needed to be.
Upon arriving at our room, we were thrilled. It was huge, clean and very well maintained. It had the usual desk area with kettle and tea/coffee sachets. There was a wall-mounted television, and the hanger area for clothes. There was a small neat bathroom, with a 3/4 sized bath (great for our daughter, but we were far too tall for it!) and a overhead shower. But the best feature of the room had to be the massive bay window, with the sea view. We could see over the bay beautifully, and our daughter was particularly enthralled by this, as the sofabed made it an ideal viewing point! We were very impressed with our room - everything worked (if you've stayed in a travelodge before, you'll know how rare this is!), and we had hot water. The room made our stay a very enjoyable experience, and we encountered no problems during this stay - it made for a very pleasant first break with our little one!
I will not comment on meals for that stay, as we didn't opt for breakfast on that occasion - preferring to go local instead. But overall, we were impressed, and it certainly influenced us into booking again at a later point.
However, having recently been back in late April (2013), I can safely say we will not be returning again at any point soon. How things change...
Upon our second stay, we were again greeted well by the front of house staff. But that was about the best experience. It's safe to say that the St. Nicholas Travelodge is in need of some maintenance work - upon having a drink in the bar, peeling wallpaper and mildew is visible on the walls. The room itself, although clean, was pretty much up in the attic this time - no bay window, although you could just about see the sea still. The bathroom was as big as the actual bedroom, but could easily have been in a hostel - again needing some maintenance. We had no hot water on the evening - nothing from the hot tap, the bath or even the shower. After a busy day though, we were too shattered to trail back downstairs to complain (on the 4th floor, right at the side of the hotel), so made-do. Fortunately we did have hot water the morning after - almost like they'd paid the meter! The large curtain in our room was also half hanging down too, which made it tricky (although not impossible) to close it fully, not helped by the sheer height of the windows.
We did book breakfast for this stay - the standard cooked breakfast was cooked to order because the hotel was so quiet (rather than be sat out for hours on end) - we must have only seen a handful of others during our stay. The breakfast and range of cereals etc, was of decent standard. It pleased my husband and daughter, so must have been okay.
But after seeing the maintenance issues, I won't be hurrying back. It's a shame, so much potential for this hotel with it's ideal location, but if it continues to fall into disrepair, the Premier Inn around the corner may reap the benefits.
I have been visiting Scarborough pretty much every year since I was a little girl, and have stayed in various places over the years, from the four star Crown Spa Hotel, to grotty camp sites! This year, we decided to stay in the Travelodge. I first stayed here two years ago, only a couple of months after it had opened. Whilst the stay had been OK, I did have some issues with cleanliness, as the cups in the room had not been changed, and empty coffee and sugar packets had been put back into the bowl by the previous occupants, something which had obviously been missed by the staff. Not only that, but when we had arrived, dirty sheets and plates were filling the hallways, presumably taken out of the rooms by the cleaners to be changed, but it did not create a good first impression. I was interested to see if things had improved.
We booked online, this is a simple process and the website is pretty much self explanatory. As this particular Travelodge offers food, you can choose to add a breakfast onto your booking at this point. We didn't do this, instead choosing to go out for our meals instead.
The location of the hotel is actually pretty good. It's right on the sea front, just behind the Grand Hotel, which is pretty iconic and a well known landmark in Scarborough. It is a 5-10 minute walk down to the beach (the South Bay) and a 5-10 minute walk to the town centre.
As it is on the sea front some of the rooms do have a sea view, although it states on the website, they can't guarantee you will get this, so I think it is just pot luck as to whether or not you get one. It is no surprise to me that I've never been one of the lucky ones to get a sea view either of the times I've stayed here. We actually had a view of a rooftop which appeared to have an old tin bath on it. Lovely.
On my previous stay I had travelled by train, but this time we took the car. You can park directly outside the hotel but it costs around £2.50 for 3 hours, which is not practical at all, not to mention it would work out blooming expensive! The staff recommended a local NCP car park, where you can leave your car at a cost of £7 for 24 hours, so we decided to do this. So whilst still expensive, it's not quite as pricey as parking directly outside of the hotel. Given the amount we must have spent on petrol and parking over our three day stay, I think next time it'll be cheaper to get the train! The receptionists can give you a map with the car park postcode written on in case you want to use sat nav.
Check in is from 3pm and is a simple process. The receptionist was friendly enough and asked if we wanted a key card each or just the one. I was quite pleased that we were asked that, as often they don't and I hate having to share a card.
Our room was on the first floor and one thing I noticed was that the floors in the corridors are very uneven. Walking on them is quite bizarre, it's almost like being drunk, as you feel like you're falling into the walls at times. I can confirm that when you are actually drunk, walking on them is even worse...but you won't care, you'll think it's the most fun you've ever had!
I should note, that even though there are lifts up to the first floor, there are also several steps once you're on the first floor (I think about seven at a maximum), as the floors are uneven and it is a pain in the neck if you have heavy cases to lug up there. I suppose it is also something you need to keep in mind if you have mobility problems, but I did notice that disabled rooms are available on the ground floor.
Once we got to the room, I must admit I was not overly impressed. Most Travelodge's are very similar in style, this one no exception. There were, however a few things about this particular room that I didn't like...
Firstly the TV was on the desk rather than wall mounted. Coupled with the kettle and mugs (this time clean, I should add), this didn't leave a whole lot of space on the desk. Not that I was planning on writing any lengthy letters home or anything like that, but I would have just liked to have had a bit more space!
The second thing I wasn't pleased with was that the walls were very grubby. I think the positioning of the bed must have meant people had been scraping the walls with their cases as they went past, and there were lots of dirty marks, which simply made the room look shabby. I felt that it could have done with a good rub down or at least a coat of paint.
I was quite surprised to find that the room had a bath. This is the first time I've had a room with a bath in a Travelodge, although the last time I stayed in this hotel the room only had a shower, so a bath isn't something you should expect if you stay here. There was however, also a shower over the bath, and the bathroom seemed cleaner than the bedroom.
The bed was comfortable and three pillows were provided - two on the bed and one spare, which I find is standard for Travelodge's. Usually if you do want more you can go down to reception and ask.
There are two computers at reception which you can use the internet on, but you have to pay.
There is a little café area to the right of reception and I believe there is also a bar there. We didn't use either of these so I can't comment on how good they were, but there were menus left in our room, and they did seem to offer a reasonable choice of different things - the standard stuff, such as burgers.
Prices vary depending on what day you book and how far in advance you book. We booked about three weeks in advance, and stayed two nights. I think we paid about £75 for a double room for two nights on a weekday in May. Book at www.travelodge.co.uk
The Travelodge offers a reasonably cheap place to stay in an excellent central location. I go to Scarborough every year, and whilst I would consider staying here again, in all honesty I don't think it would be my first choice for next years trip. Whilst it's in an excellent location and offers a comfortable bed, I'm still not 100% happy with the level of cleanliness. Whilst it isn't so grubby you leave feeling like you need a good wash, I still feel it needs to be more thoroughly cleaned, and the parking was an issue too, so I can only give this a very average three stars.