“ Warner holidays are just for adults. The company has thirteen properties situated within beautiful locations throughout the UK. There are Historic and Character Hotels and Classic Resorts. Each property is different but all have the same high standard of „
Not been to Sinah Warren (Hayling Island) before, but came up to the usual standard. Was taken ill on the second night of my holiday , the staff got a doctor in very efficiently reception sent me up food on the first night also the waiter sent me up food on the second night (because i could not stay in the resturaunt ) being 6 hours away from home their help and concern made me feel a lot better.Thank you to everyone.
Arranged a break for my parents for my mums 60th Birthday, arranged extras for both of them, pampering and flowers, champagne etc so in total cost me near on £500, the day before my parents were due to go my dad had a heart attack, he is thankfully ok but still in hospital and unable to go on this trip, phoned customer service who showed no compassion and just said tough, at first they would not talk to me and only my dad (even though I booked and paid for it), but after speaking to my dad from his hospital bed and getting him worked up (while on a heart monitor) I spoke to them but this company just said sorry you have lost your money, thing is I was not asking for my money back I was asking for it to be postponed for when my dad was able to go.
I am disgusted with this company and they are not the reputable company you think they are, as long as they have your money they do not care.
Just come back from a 5 day break at Gunton Hall brilliant food staff and the resident entertainers worked their socks off warm welcoming chalets cannot praise to highly cannot wait to go again
I have read many reviews regarding Warners Hotels mostly good but there are a lot of moaners out there who are not satisfied unless they are complaining.My wife and I have spent many great holidays at Warners over the years and I can honestly say that we have never been let down.What more could you ask for with top class food,hotel cleanliness,fantastic entertainment and last but not least staff that really put themselves out to make sure your stay is made as pleasant as possible.We have just had a break at Sinah Warren and whilst there we booked two more holidays.Members of our family have also had breaks with Warners on our recommendation ( and none of us are easily pleased.) Here's looking forward to many more.
5 days break to holm lacy turned into nightmare of dodging the end of the bed in the historic room or banging the head on the cast iron corner of the mantlepiece, so after two nights we left, it should have been a relaxing rehab for my husband turned out very badly. We had been to warners, previously, but this was not what we expected !!!!!!!
Just had a break at Holme Lacey, & If we hadnt already got another hotel booked we would never go to another Warners, Room Ok, But 3 different Restaurants,& we were in the'' cheapest'' which we didnt know about, their should be continuity in all warners, The food was the worst we have ever had,best meal was cheese & biscuits,Potatoes & veg, just not worth trying to eat, & why was the waitress scraping the new potatoes off the plates onto another.when we has a dressing of crushed potatoes the next night???? Our waiter Kolin & the others were really pleasant, The bar prices, !!!! so no we wont be back,
Holmelacy 21 Sept 094 nights hotel fine.we had to wait 40 mins for starters it took 2 hours for us to complete our meal and the amount was very poor we stood it for 2nights in the bistro and downgraded to carvery which was a lot better,We could not go to eat before 7/30 so we had little evening to enjoy.The reason given for long wait for meals was new kitchen could not cope whith the amount of diners it spoilt 2 days 0f our holiday.Main bar for 2 nights coolers were not working beer was to warm.We have been on many warners holidays before and they were very good.Holmelacy shoold get there act together they seemed short of staff,specialey on waiters side
I have been with Warner holidays for the past ten years or over. The last one was at Holmlacy 15 of us went and we all had a lovely time. The food was excelent and the Tremalose were very good. The only draw back was it was rather warm in the Restaurant we were in. We often go to Warners as a family get to gether with friends. and would recommend it for good food, relaxation or friendly game of bowls, or snooker, or tennis. Our group is mixed in ages from forty to seventy six. Any age group mixes well here and is well suitable for those with disabilities or able bodied alike.
Our next trip we are planning Holmlacy again for our 50th wedding annaversery of about 20 + friends and family. And before that a tinsel and turkey which are very good fun and value for money.
Warner -Just for adults, its certainly that, adults of a certain age , should be Warner holiday for the over 50's, we stayed at the Thoresby Hall whilst i was pregnant as a birthday present and although very nice and relaxing i was alittle bit bored at night as one under the age of 50 apart from us , the rooms are really nice and comfortable, food is good and a varied selection , plenty of daytime activities to keep to busy, the leisure facilities are great , there is a spa , although we didnt use it so can not comment but it look really modern, the grounds are very large so good for walking , lots of histry in the building aswell , at certain times of the year they do dedicated breaks for music etc so if that interests you and you are young , you will have a fantastic time , other than that wait till your of a certain age !!
Hi my wife and i have just had a very pleasant 3 days at Bodelwyddan Castle North Wales,1st of August 08.Hotel was excellent as was the food. Thanks to our waiter Nick for making us feel welcome.To Jules for his witty banter while preparing us to play Robin Hood(Archery),and also to Bob in the Bowls hall.We came for the cabaret on offer,but of the three nights entertainment,the resident staff entertainers were by far the best act on show. David Copperfield and the Rocking Berries were good but dated.Its a very beautiful part of North Wales,and there is plenty to do and see,just don't go for the weather.This is our third Warners break and will be taking another in the future.Mr. Warner i think you could just squeeze a golf course in your back garden,then it would be perfik.
As you may have guessed by now we visit Warner breaks during the winter months when the camping season is over. We have never pre- booked this location as we have usually gone on a last minute visit when life gets too much and we need to take a break from it all. We have visited here on three occasions, on the whole they have all been very good weekends and the Castle itself is beautiful. Before going into the details of our stay I would like to give you a little bit of the History of the Castle itself which is set in 260 acres of parkland.
**** THE HISTORY ****
The house goes back to before 1460 belonging to the Williams family. The castle itself which is Grade II listed, was the creation of Sir John Hay Williams and dates back to between 1830 and 1852.
During World War 1 when the Williams family fortune was dwindling the house was used as a hospital, part of the grounds were used for warfare training and the castle itself was used as the officers mess and recuperation centre.
After the war around 1920 the Williams family sold the house, castle and grounds to the Lowther College which was run as a private girls school for over 60 years until 1982 when Clwyd County Council bought it and opened the Castle as a museum after renovating it to his former Victorian glory. In 1994 Warner's leased the house and converted it to the up and running Hotel it is today.
**** THE MUSEUM ****
On one of our visits there was a reduced charge for hotel guests, I believe it cost around £2.00 to take a look around the Castle Museum, you do have to get your discount from the receptionist in the hotel. The restored museum is magnificent with its grand design and beautiful artwork. There are displays and artefacts from the Victorian era, as the museum works closely with the National Portrait Gallery, the Victoria and Albert Museum and the Royal Academy of Arts. (For information the architect that restored the museum to its former glory was Roderick Gradidge).
So expect to find wonderful Victorian paintings and artefacts of that era, as well as this a part of the museum has been set aside for the history of is use thought WW1 and its life as a Private Girls School displaying memorabilia from that time as well as photographs showing pictures of what life was like at Lowther College. There is a section displaying toys of a gone by age which are interactive, the curator there encourages you to demonstrate them and will help you to understand how they work - I did find this a pleasant experience enjoying the childish fun they bought.
**** GHOST ****
Now the spooky bit, the Castle is renowned to be haunted by a lady and a soldier, a couple of 'hot spots' around the castle. The castle has been on Most Haunted. Now I don't want to tell you too much and spoil your fun, but during my research I discovered that during one of the Castles' many renovations they dug up some human remains, but instead of removing the remains they bricked them back up and they are still there to this day, could this be one of the ghosts. The Museum does run ghost walks and overnight ghost hunts.
Ghost walks - these are held on certain dates and run with a minimum of 10 people to a max of 30 and last around 1 1\2 hours.
Ghost nights - this runs from 9pm to 6am overnight in the castle at a price of £60.00 per person with either an evening buffet or continental breakfast provided. Equipment is provided to help you on your ghost hunt over night.
For further information please visit their web site - www.bodelwyddan-castle.co.uk/tours.htm
**** THE HOTEL ****
The hotel is set in the old house, the exterior fitting in with the castle, the interior is decorated in the tradition Warner style, which for those that don't know is done in a classic design to enhance the period features (I will say the wallpaper in the bedroom, I did like - it matched our living room, he, he). The high ceilings and elegant decoration make it a pleasure to see.
The Main Reception - you get to this by passing through an archway big enough to take a horse and carriage, you enter through a slightly modern glass porch (but fits in nicely with the design) into a large room with the reception desk facing and comfortable chairs and tables for guests to rest at.
From reception you can go down either a ramp or a couple of stairs to the toilets which are very clean and fresh smelling.
The main entertainment room just at the back of reception, is on three graduating levels, with a non smoking and smoking areas provided, wheelchair access is provided as there are ramps at the one end, there are stairs at the other end of the room. There are also outside doors here that take you into a courtyard. The room itself is very spacious with the bar at one end of the room and the stage at the other end, there is a high ceiling and a terrace bar (called The Gallery) with arches and balustrades where guests can enjoy watching the show from up high.
On our visits the resident band and entertainment team have never failed to impress. Your evening entertainment usually consists some dancing and a quiz, some Warner Hotels have a small bingo session, then its on to the resident band and star turn (which is sometimes done by the entertainment team) ending with the resident band and a small disco taking you to around midnight.
A note for smokers - the smoking area in the main entertainment hall is quite small, so to get a good seat you need to get there early.
The restaurant is very extensive again as are all Warner Breaks, both evening meal and breakfast is done in a self service buffet style, each small area being allocated their own waiter\waitress - meal times being varied to cater for the early eaters and the later eaters. On our visits the restaurant is very large, but due to its shape you do not feel overwhelmed by it, it used to have two or three buffet areas, but that may have changed last year when Warner's changed there the menus and style of buffet.
Going by the changes we noticed last year, you should expect a vast choice of food available for both breakfast and evening meal. Warner's provide the same set out in all there Hotels.
Breakfast - choice of fresh fruit, croissants, jam pastries, cereals, fried egg, scrambled egg, bacon, sausage (which is usually spicy), fried bread, mushrooms, hash browns, tomatoes and baked beans. Also toast fresh tea and coffee. If this is not enough choice you have a small menu from the kitchen which is kippers or poached egg on toast.
Evening Meal - once again an extensive choice is now on offer, you have a menu at your table which will tell you the choice available for that evening (this choice is different on each evening of your visit). Normally there are about three choices from the kitchen, one of which will be vegetarian and then you have the self service buffet, where you would expect to find your exotic choices, of curries, pastas etc. vegetarian selection, salad selection and the carvery selection.
The food is very tasty, there was only one occasion when I picked something that sounded nice, but tasted awful, if this happens I'm sure you could go back up and change your meal. I didn't do this, I just swapped with my hubby (he, he).
The Tudor Rooms - a la carte restaurant is available and it is advisable to book in advance as it does get fairly busy especially on a Saturday evening, there is an extra cost for here and it is fairly expensive even with the discount offered. I have not tried the food in here, but if it is up to the quality of the a la carte at Thorseby Hall it will be well worth the extra money. (If you see the receptionist I think you get a £5.00 discount off your meal).
The Bedrooms - These come in either Twin or Double rooms called Ambassador Rooms, the basic room is pleasantly decorated, and the beds are all good sizes including the single beds in the twin rooms. All rooms are ensuite, with TV, hair dryer, tea\coffee making facilities, two comfy chairs, coffee table, fresh towels and complimentary toiletries available for your use. If you need extra pillows just call reception and they will bring them to you.
You can get different grades of rooms at additional costs per night starting from £6.00 per night for a slightly larger room (Ambassador plus) to an extra £27.00 per night for their Royal Room - which comes with four poster bed, spa bath, parkland and garden view, plus a welcome back which includes wine, flowers, fruit and bathrobes, also provided is a mini bar which is charged on consumption.
Bodelwyddan Castle has its' own resident pianist Steven Hodges he has been there on every visit we have made over the past few years, he is excellent and well worth listening to, I usually loose my husband to go and listen to him, if I am not ready on time. Steven plays most evenings in one of the bars from 6pm - 7pm and he also does a later show around 11pm or midnight (sorry I can't remember the exact times) and this is in the terrace lounge (which looks over at the main entertainment hall). The Bar Steve plays in (sorry I cannot remember the name), is situated opposite reception across the cobbled courtyard, it is a large rectangle room with a large open fire as a centre piece against the far wall, large leather comfy chairs and sofas situated around large coffee tables, with a bar at one end. Steve is positioned to the side of the large fireplace along with his piano. This room is a relaxing room and you will find books and games for your entertainment here.
As it is usually during the winter when we visit I cannot go into great details on the gardens as I have not had the pleasure of seeing them in their full glory as you would during the summer months. I have seen pictures of the Victoria Walled Garden with its arches of flowers and it did look spectacular, there are also woodland walks if you wish to partake.
The hotel and castle may have many acres of parkland surrounding them, but the house and castle are in relatively small courtyards which do not take cars. This does mean that you have to carry your luggage (if a porter is not available) a fair distance.
**** ON SITE ENTERTAINMENT****
As previously mentioned it is set in 260 acres of parkland for you to explore, with woodland walks and the beautiful gardens.
There are small gift shops and coffee shops tucked around the courtyard.
The museum which I have already described
There are 5 different bars around the hotel
Hair Salon and Beauty Salon available at a small cost - I had my nails manicure here and I really enjoyed the experience and they did a good job, I think it cost me around £15.00. I could not get an appointment to suit me for the Hair Salon, so it is advisable to book early.
The Health Suite has a plunge pool, sauna, steam room, tropicarium and fitness studio and a coffee shop to relax in after - snacks are around £4.50 for a sandwich with side salad and crisps.
Heated indoor pool and spa pool - these are nice and warm - a lovely atmosphere.
Also snooker, bowls, pool and table tennis, archery, croquet, cycle hire.
And finally the staff run various day time entertainment if you wish to join in, these are listed on your TV or at reception.
Now, let me back track a bit, at the beginning of this review I mentioned that we usually book on the discounts breaks, these are advertised on their website and are updated from month to month, Warner's also send out mail shots offering discount prices. So we have usually taken what was available on the occasions we have visited, we have always been lucky enough to get a double room smoking. During our last visit we were talking to a lady and her mother on the Saturday evening, she was sharing our table in the rather cramped smoking section of the entertainment room. She told us that she had come down that day and was stopping until Monday morning (2 night stay) and that she booked late Friday with the Hotel itself getting the 2 nights for £50.00 each which was less than half of what my husband and I had paid for our 3 night stay. Well good luck to them, I say, but I do wish I had tried that, we booked through Warner's phone line, she contacted the Hotel itself, either way, when you wait to the last minute you may get a bargain, but there is no guarantee on what room you get or if there is a room, but I might try phoning the hotel if I get to go again.
**** OUT AND ABOUT ****
Well the name says it all it's just over the border and in Wales so there's loads to do, Wales has such beautiful countryside and so many places to see all within driving distance, plus the Hotel and Castle is situated in wonderful park land.
Now girls, we have shopping, you are about 30mins away from Chester with its oldie worldie beautiful buildings, combining history and modern shopping, and if that's not enough you are close to Cheshire Oaks Factory Outlet Village, full of discount shopping and places to eat. Next to that you have the multiplex cinema, ten pin bowling and various restaurants - so spoilt for choice.
I admit it, it is not just the shopping we go for, but when we visit here, we do take the opportunity to visit Chester as it is such a beautiful town, with many walks, beautiful buildings which are steeped in history. We just love our visits there.
Also in the Chester direction you have Chester Zoo and The Sea Life Centre.
Now for the Welsh Direction all less than 1 hour away, you have The Welsh Mountain Zoo, Caernarfon Castle and Conwy Castle, Llandudno, Great Orm Country Park, Trefriw Woollen Mill and Snowdonia National park. This is Wales and so you have lots of beautiful views, small villages, small village pubs and beautiful countryside.
**** LOCATION ****
Bodelwyddan Castle and Hotel
From the M6
Exit the M6 at junction 19a
Follow the M56 to Chester/North Wales
Take A55 to North Wales
You will find Bodelwyddan Castle just off Junction 25
Of the A55
Call Warner's booking line - 0870 601 6012
Or book on line at www.warnerbreaks.co.uk
**** CONCLUSION ****
Well once again we have enjoyed a Warner break, this one is not as elegant as the other Historic Hotels Warner own, but it is still steeped in history, with the old building, courtyards etc, which is something we love, it is still grand but not as grand as say Thoresby Hall, but all this is reflected in the price (prices vary each week so would be too much to list, just take a look at there web site or their brochure). With these breaks you can take as little or as much out of them as you like, we go for the rest and relaxation away from the pressures of work and home. It is a lovely historical place to visit on our first time we explored all the little shops that are along the courtyard, played on a large chess set that is painted on the floor, visited the museum and the little coffee shops it was idyllic, peaceful and beautiful.
They do cater for disabled, but I will add the court yard is cobbled stone so would be a little bumpy, there are lifts to each floor is the modern extension where the bedrooms are.
Our only gripe with here is the distance from the car park to your room, as you cannot bring your car to reception as no cars allowed in the courtyard. The Hotel does provide porters, but remember you are not the only ones booking in that day, so you could have a long wait for a porter to become free.
The whole place is kept very clean and your rooms are tended to daily, with fresh towels provided.
If you love peace and quiet, if you love entertainment, if you love historical buildings and a little luxury then I would highly recommend a visit.
If you do go and visit drop me a line I would be interested in your thoughts - thanks for reading
Warner's are a travel company that specialise in Short Breaks in the UK "Just for Adults". Now, don't go getting the wrong idea here…"just for adults" in this context does NOT mean XXX rated! The first clue should come from the advert - a gentle affair where the models are definitely vintage! The first Warner holiday that my husband and I (both 27) took was about a year before we got married. We stayed at the Bembridge Coast Hotel on the Isle of Wight. As we drove up the driveway all we could see were bowls players and Zimmer frames interspersed with the odd motorised wheelchair. Uh-oh, I think we got this very wrong….. Warner's market to the 40+ age group with most of their clients being retired. They have several venues throughout the UK classified into three groups; historic, character and classic resorts. The Historic Hotels are mainly listed buildings of significant historical or architectural interest, often with lovely grounds. The Character hotels are like the Historic without the obvious history and the Classic resorts are rather like upmarket Butlins camps with chalet-style accommodation. The Warner group prides itself on the quality of its accommodation and the two venues that I have stayed at have certainly borne this out. The rooms are large and clean with good furnishings. You may get a bit of a shock when you go into the bathrooms though. They are all designed with mobility in mind and there are grab rails everywhere and the mirror is placed very low on the wall. Not all rooms are wheelchair accessible but many are and many of the properties have lifts to maximise accessibility. All of the breaks are Half-Board and the food is good! Breakfasts are huge and well served with plenty of variety. You have the option of buffet-style or waitress service so again these resorts are ideal for those with less mobility. Likewise dinner is waitress service with buffet opt
ions. There is a carvery everyday together with an a la carte menu. Puddings are old fashioned in the extreme - loads of stodge and school dinner favourites. Occasionally you are treated to something a little more adventurous but don't bank on it! Many of the Historic hotels have an additional a la carte restaurant that is available at extra cost. Perhaps a downside for the younger amongst us is the meal arrangement. Meals are taken quite early (dinner starts at 6pm) and you are allocated a table at the beginning of your stay which is yours for the duration. Dining is rather like dining at a school whose pupils are residents of old-peoples homes. This might not be everyone's cup of tea and if you are not comfortable in a mixed environment where the old and disabled mix with the more able bodied then Warner is not for you. Drinks at the bars and in the restaurant can be charged to your room and prices are less than London pubs and bars so you are not being taken for a ride. The daytime focus of Warner holidays appears to be bowls (although we have never joined in). All venues have facilities and some have championship indoor greens so the weather can't get in the way. Bowls breaks seem to make up about 75% of the guests with informal tuition and contests taking place over the break. The more active are not left out however. Leisure facilities are available at all resorts and most have health suites. Speciality breaks can be taken at a number of resorts throughout the year including Murder Mystery weekends, Hot Air Ballooning, Falconry and Gardening. These book up well in advance, although places are often available without the speciality option. In the evenings Warner comes alive. All venues have resident bands and entertainment teams and many breaks are "Star Breaks" where the likes of Kenny Ball, Katrina and the Waves, Des O'Connor and Darren Day take to the stage for the evening. These breaks also s
ell out fast. If you are into Big Band music or Orchestral music there are weekends dedicated to this along with sounds of the 50s/60s/70s weekends. The entertainment is truly first class. So, what made us go here! Quite simply it was good value! We wanted to go to the Isle of Wight for a long weekend and having looked at a number of hotels I stumbled across Warner's website (www.warnerholidays.co.uk) and was amazed. For the same price (or less) than hotel accommodation on the island we could have half board accommodation, leisure facilities, entertainment and ferry travel included. Since we only wanted a base it did not bother us that the hotels are aimed at the older market. Well, we had a whale of a time! The rooms were good, the food was excellent, the facilities fab and the entertainment enthralling! Both Andrew and I dance, not the clubbing sort, but ballroom, latin and R&R. Loads of people got up to dance to the live bands and we fitted right in! We had such a good time on the Isle of Wight that when we next fancied a break we decided to look at Bodelwyddan Castle in North Wales, again to use as a base to go walking in Snowdonia. Bodelwyddan is a fairy-tale castle. It is a real old castle set in fantastic grounds, complete with a box-hedge maze. We went in January and seeing the mist surrounding the castle as we came back from a days hiking was magical. This holiday will also stay with me because of one group of people that we met. With most guests around 60 years of age Andrew and I stood out like sore thumbs - if you don't like being conspicuous and you are young then this probably isn't the holiday for you. On the first night we went into the entertainment room to listen and dance to the band. A lady came straight up to me and pointed a gentleman out to me and asked would I go and ask him to dance, today was a special day for him. I was a bit bemused that she knew I could dance but nevertheless asked the
gentleman whether he would like a waltz. He accepted and wow! what a fantastic dancer. We talked as we danced and it turned out that he had lost his wife a year ago to the day. He used to dance with her and, I guess, this is why I had been asked to dance with him. A little later in the evening the lady who had asked me to dance with the gentleman came over to speak to us. She was so embarrassed. She said that she thought that Andrew and I must have been staff and now, having realised that we weren't she wanted to apologise. I told her that it really was not a problem although I had been slightly confused as to how she knew I could dance! It transpired that she was in charge of a stroke rehabilitation group and that this was their annual holiday with the group. Later in the evening the gentleman asked me for a quickstep, which I gladly accepted. He told me how pleased he was to have been able to dance on the anniversary of his wife's death and how she would have been proud of him. It was a feeling that I will never forget, making someone so happy without trying! Prices for their breaks start from under £100 for a three night break. Warners have also started offering short cruises within Europe which look to be equally good value. I would thoroughly recommend Warner holidays to everyone unless you are younger and uncomfortable being with older people or disabled people. They offer good accommodation, food and entertainment and a good base from which to explore the local areas.
We have recently returned from a wonderful Warner's weekend at Cricket St Thomas in Somerset where the TV show "To the Manor Born" was filmed. I must admit to being a little nervous about this holiday - I was worried we may have booked ourselves into an upmarket version of Butlins, but my fears turned to relief when we arrived. Warners have built a modern holiday complex (no kids allowed!) which is hidden discretely behind the historic house. Numerous activities were available, from tennis and a gym to croquet on the lawn! Each evening we enjoyed a lovely 3 course meal and then superb caberet entertainment. Our room was a beautiful "Royale" suite in the main house, complete with four poster bed and jacuzzi. We did, however pay a supplement for this (additional £130 in total for all 3 nights) but it was worth every penny- Its not every night you get the chance to sleep in a 250 year old bedroom! There were photos and scripts from "To the Manor Born" in the library, and they even played the videos for those who were interested. The standards of service at Cricket St Thomas were impressive. The staff were extemely friendly and helpful. As two schoolteachers in need of a relaxing break, we particularly appreciated the child-free environment!! Most of the guests were retired, I assume, but there were many couples in their 30's and 40's too. The weekend break was very good value - less than £200 each (without supplement), which included breakfast, dinner, entertainment and activities. And during peak season too. If you are looking for a country house holiday with lots of lesuire activities, then Warners "Just for Adults" is for you too.
With our first wedding anniversary fast approaching hubby decided that we should have a romantic break to celebrate. After looking around on the Internet, I suggested to him that he try and book for Warner's historic hotel, Holme Lacy House, near Hereford. ~~~ Just For Adults ~~~ Warner's have been around for a long time and until recent years were just another holiday company like Butlins & Pontins. Then they decided to go Adult Only and the result is all your holiday camp favorites but with no kids running around noisily. Heaven for us, last year we had a break in Bath where a pleasant evening meal was totally ruined by six uncontrolled children running up and down screaming and shouting, didn't bother their parents who were in a function room! Today Warner's have a number of classic resorts, character hotels and historic hotels where adults can enjoy a pleasant child-free break. Whichever resort you choose you can expect the same high standards of facilities and entertainment. ~~~ Booking ~~~ Before booking a Warner holiday, you should take time to visit their website www.warnerholidays.co.uk. Here you will find many price reductions listed and also if you quote the web booking reference you get a discount, but there is no online booking. To book we phoned the customer care centre and booked over the phone. As it was a romantic break we opted for a feature room called a "Royale Suite" which came complete with a four poster bed and Jacuzzi, at least that’s what Dave was told when he booked. ~~~ Arrival ~~~ We arrived at Holme Lacy in the middle of a rainstorm, it was really coming down. I was pleased to see that although you are not allowed to park right in front of the hotel you are allowed to leave the car there whilst you unload and check in. There were smartly dressed porters on hand to help with your luggage and show you to your room, we grabbed one straight away. When we checke
d in Dave asked for a "Warner's account card", basically a cardboard card with your signature and room number on which allows you to charge all your hotel expenses to your room. The porter then showed us to the restaurant where we were given details of our table allocation. Then we were delivered to our suite. ~~~ The Suite ~~~ Our suite was beautiful, the King Charles 1st suite (he slept at the house in 1645). A king sized four poster bed, which was so high I had to climb into it. I found plenty of wardrobe space and drawer space as well as a nice dressing table. The bathroom was huge, but there was no Jacuzzi! Dave asked at reception and whoever he spoke to when he booked was obviously clueless as this particular hotel doesn't have any Jacuzzis, a shame but I had a great time anyway. ~~~ Company ~~~ When you go to Warner's be prepared for an older age group. We were aware that this would be the case but we wanted a romantic break, not a wild time with people we met so it suited us just fine. I have to say though I have never seen so many electric wheelchairs in one place. I'll tell you though, the gray rinse brigade put us to shame as we dragged ourselves off to bed, exhausted at 10pm every night whilst they danced the night away. It was certainly perfect for our break, as my father had died a few days ago I didn't really want to be chatting to a lot of strangers and making friends. ~~~ Food ~~~ All Warner holidays are on a half board basis. The hotel had several restaurants and you were allocated a table in one on your arrival. Our table was a lovely table for two, on its own just in front of the fireplace. Other tables for two were actually a foot away from the next table, but everyone seemed to like chatting to their neighbors. Breakfast is a full English buffet, freshly cooked pancakes and waffles, cereal selection, fruit juice, and items like kippers from the kitchen –
certainly plenty to choose from. The evening meals are three courses and you can chose from the carvery, salad bar or have dishes delivered from the kitchen by your waitress. Again plenty of choice and plenty to fill you up. There was also an a la carte restaurant available at an extra charge. If you wanted a snack during the day, sandwiches and afternoon tea was available (at a charge) from the bar. ~~~ Facilities ~~~ The hotel had all the facilities you would expect from a first class hotel. There was an indoor swimming pool, whirlpool, sauna, steam room and solarium. Also there was a beauty salon, where for the bargain price of £58 I spent three hours being massaged, manicured, pedicured and generally pampered (Dave will be paying this off for years). There were also two bars, plenty of lounges and a hotel shop. There is even a large selection of board games if you just want to make your own entertainment. ~~~ Activities ~~~ This is where Warner's years of experience with the holiday camps come into play. During our weekend stay there was archery, bowls, croquet, tennis, fencing, fishing, aerobics, aqua aerobics, line dancing, fun casino, quizzes and load of other free activities. We didn't do a lot but we did play fun blackjack and roulette (fun because they give you the chips rather than you paying for them – they don't have a gaming license) and a number of quizzes. Would you believe it Dave and I, the youngest couple there won the 60's music quiz! ~~~ Entertainment ~~~ Entertainment is nightly at Warner's. Throughout the season you will find special theme weekends such as Jazz or big band if you are interested. Also they book a number of "Stars" to perform such as Kid Creole & The Coconuts and Jools Holland. Ours was not a special weekend so in the evening we found it started with ballroom dancing, followed by a caberet act. On our anniversary there was Bingo before the
caberet, Dave and I were very disappointed to find it was just one measly game though (move over granny, we love bingo). ~~~ Bad Points ~~~ I couldn't write this opinion without mentioning the bad points. Our weekend was a particularly hot one and the hotel had no air conditioning, which is understandable given that it’s a listed building. The dining room was unbearably hot though, and many people skipped dessert just to get out of there. Also it was just as hot in the "pavilion" where the entertainment was, although that is not part of the historic building but a recent addition, it still had no air conditioning. The other bad point was the service in the restaurant, not only was in unbelievably slow (it took me ½ hour to get a pot of tea one breakfast) the waitresses were all foreign. By this I mean that English was not their first language, in fact I don't think it was our waitresses second language as she hardly spoke a word, we had to point at what we wanted on the menu for her to copy down. We suffered with wrong orders, several times. ~~~ Value for Money ~~~ This weekend break actually cost us more than our recent week in Spain, but the Spain trip was a real cheapy. The cost for two people was a little over £400, but that was with a feature room, with a standard room it would have been around £320. Drinks were not cheaply prices with a pint of lager costing about £2.45 and a bottle of Moet & Chandon costing £33 (and we drank 3 bottles on our anniversary – OUCH). Overall though I do think it was good value for money, a similar hotel room elsewhere would have cost a lot more and the drinks are often more expensive than this in hotels too. ~~~ The Bottom Line ~~~ I loved my weekend away. It was just what I needed to help me celebrate at a difficult time. It was relaxing and peaceful without any children around. The activities, entertainment and food were all great. I'll be goin
g back to Warner's again, next time I'm going to try Cricket St Thomas, the house where they filmed "To The Manor Born".