Second stay at a MacDonald Hotel - first one in Bath and on this mini-break a contrasting hotel in the heart of Windsor.
Booked this trip for my wife and I to enjoy the sights of Royal Windsor and to enjoy the horse show, Royal pageant and general Jubilee goings on this week.
Arrived by train, which is just no more than a 10 minute slightly uphill walk from Windsor Eaton Riverside station - don't get a cab, just trundle up the road and get your first glimpses of the amazing Windsor Castle en route to your hotel slap bang in the middle of town and immediately opposite the castle. However don't blink as you may just walk straight past the entrance lobby if your not careful!
Upon entrance big spacious entrance and lobby up to reception - effortless check-in. First gripe though as we were just left to show ourselves up to our room without any offer of help. Ah well just saved a fiver tip, and only had small cases so no real issue. Booked a standard room, as these are more than adequate. Room was at the back of the hotel, but was top floor and had a nice view over the hills towards Ascot. Room was top notch and very modern with all that you would come to expect from Macdonald, plus a large walk in shower. You may or may not realise that Windsor is on th eflight path of Heathrow so during the most part of the day you will a lot of airliners flying over the town, however not a problem to us, and my point that the rooms were also very soundproofed so you won't get disturbed.
Five minutes after getting to our room we were knocked on by room service and presented with a bottle of wine as part of the Royal turn down service we had included.
Bed was nice and comfy and a good nights sleep had. Down to breakfast and again if you know MacDonald you know what to expect, somewhere between 3 and 4 members of staff seating you, getting tea and toast and bringing you your breakfast. Ususal full English if you want of the choice of a full cold and continenetal if you wish.
Spent three nights here and the standard of accomodation was maintained daily to a high degree of cleanliness.
Ok now then - a little honesty...a couple of little moans that weren't enough to detract and a big one to finish.
Loose toilet seat! Now I'm a bit of a handyman so was even prepared to fix it, but fixings were internal and would have resulted in ripping whole fixture off the wall. Not worth bothering reception over though as its not a holiday killer!!
Extractor never worked in bathroom. Again this wasn't an issue as it became quite fun playing 'Stars in Their Eyes' emerging from the mist of steam from the shower!
Always a deal clincher on our hols is Gluten Free catering for my wife. On the whole spot on, but on breakfast on day two, the chef wasn't too bothered about toasting th egluten free bread on both sides, mmmm yum! - thats what my wife said....sarcastically of course.
But these really were all minor things against the one overiding thing that didn't actually seem to exist....a little acknowledgement from the staff. Apart from check-in and out and breakfast the staff wouldn't engage in any eye contact on reception or so much as bid you good morning or evening when walking through reception. Then apparent paranoia set in as each morning for breakfast, despite the restaurant being no more than 20% full at any time, were always banished to a corner???
Now as already mentioned this was Royal week, so a lot of the horse show competitors, and spectators were here. Unlike Bath which is a spa hotel, this also had a little more of a business feel to it, and due to this nature experienced on more than one occasion ill mannered behaviour from the hotels own clientel. I put this down to one simple thing. My wife and I were on holiday and therefore for the most part wore our casual clothes such as jeans shirts and jackets, unlike the suit and tie hooray Henry brigade that lined the hotel wall to wall. Unfortunately a stigma, but had they appreciated that my designer jeans, shirt, shoes, and even underwear cost more than their George at ASDA suits, and we had actually paid for our rooms as opposed to an expense account footing the bill, we might have comanded a little more respect all round. That said you can't determine whos staying there and yes the overall experience was very good indeed.
To summarise Windsor is just beautiful. Visit the Castle and allow 3-4 hours, don't rush it, its amazing, and don't forget to take a walk along 'The Long Walk' leading to the gates. A 3 mile mile dead straight joy. I used to pop there first thing in the morning and you could almost have it to yourself. City sight0seeing bus is very good, make sure you also stop off at Eaton. Literally is only 15 minute walk from the town across the bridge. really big and nice shopping facilities, take a stroll by the Thames and see all the swans, and even a river boat ride, its not at all expensive. You also get the guards parade every day from the barracks up to the castle around 11am. Loads of places to eat in the evening - and does have a heavy Oriental restaurant contingent, and also theres the theatre which was showing a play most nights.
All in all Windsor is a beautiful place to visit and will definately return. The hotel is very good too and was perfectly convenient for all we wanted to do - if you want a spa though - try next door, they have one - you do the research!! It was good enough for the Russian Olympic equestrian team - and they didn't have suits!! Enjoy Windsor.
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
8 June 2012
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Thank you for taking the time to complete such a helpful and constructive review of the Macdonald Windsor Hotel following your stay with us.
I was pleased to note that you enjoyed your stay overall, however may I sincerely apologise for your disappointment with some of the maintenance aspects of your stay and the service shortfalls you experienced. Please be assured that I am investigating into your comments as they are in no way reflective of our usual standards of service or feedback. Every guest should experience the same high level of service and I am sorry that this was not the case in your experience.
I appreciate you taking the time to complete a review of the hotel and I hope despite the shortfalls you experienced, that you will return. Indeed, do contact me direct in order that I may take care of the arrangements for you personally.
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC