Newest Review: ... station and a stone's throw from the shops and sites of Durham. Durham Leisure Centre is right across the road too as is the bowling alley... more
Kick a man when he is down
Hotels in Durham
Member Name: mgoldman
Hotels in Durham
Date: 06/07/04, updated on 06/07/04 (93 review reads)
Advantages: location, location, location
Disadvantages: expensive for what it is, getting a bit tatty at the edges, staff were undertrained
What do kids who don't get into Oxbridge do?
They go to University of Durham.
So each year, thousands of middle class parents pack their kids of to Durham, some of them not even knowing where it is, only being certain that it is not on the Tube network, and not inside the M25. Durham is definitely a Town and Gown city. The end product is a good graduate of a good university, and the family wants to come to the graduation. Graduation dates are fixed well in advance, and this gives the hotels lots of notice to put their prices up. There is a paucity of hotels in Durham, and there is only one 4* and probably only the one 3* in the city centre, within walking distance of the cathedral where graduation occurs. I tried booking through my agent, who usually gets me terrific deal/rack rates, but met with a brick wall. No discounting during graduation week.
We stayed at the Three Tuns, a Swallow Hotel, as we could not justify the expense of the Marriott Royal County, which was running about £200/night for b and b. The Three Tuns was a good choice. You could park a car, with difficulty, but we never failed. The hotel was hospitable, but made it quite clear, that during the Graduation Week, they were doing us a favour letting us stay there. Reception staff were friendly, but appeared to have little idea of what was going on. Service was acceptable in the restaurant, but the bar was manned (or more precisely womanned) by one person, who spent long periods away from her station trying to find obscure bottles of wine.
Rooms were comfortable, and adequately equipped. There was a minibar and trouser press. Mobile phones worked in the rooms. There is no air conditioning, and rooms over the main street are noisy until quite late. Bathrooms are a bit spartan, and there are no supplies, the hotel trying to con guest that the wall mounted bottle of soap is environmentally friendly.
However the big advantage is the location, which in Durham counts
for a lot. It is nowhere near the railway station (but nowhere is in Durham), but is easily reached off the A1. From the hotel it is a five minute walk into the shopping streets and historic centre, and ten minutes away from the Cathedral. Car parking in Durham is virtually impossible in the centre unless you have a permit or some kind of concession, so everything is best done on foot. As a base for visiting the University and its graduation, it is perfect, and it is good bolt hole during the graduation day. We had the early graduation, and breakfasts were served early so that you could go and queue from 0800. They recognised the timetabling, and allowed people to leave their cars there during the day, or to store luggage.
More reviews in the field of Hotel National
- Manors Maketh Man! Bridgewood Manor is probably the best that Chatham has to off ...
- Great at what it does - But Don't Holiday In Ashford, for Gawd's sake!
- Two views, just to be fair, of the Hilton, Sheffield
- Priceline sent me to the Arora International, Gatwick. Which was nice!
- It?s Hip To Be Square ? Le Méridien Gatwick Airport
- Good base for Scarborough and North Yorkshire !
- Wish we had asked for a cottage with a view!
- A mixed package..
- Tangiers but in South Wales not Morocco
- Ibis is the biz
- Hotel Libertys on the Square (Blackpool)
- Mercure Bristol Holland House
- Malmaison (Belfast)
- Hotel Tigh Na Mara (Dumfries & Galloway)
- The Greyhound Inn (Ganton Scarborough)
- Premier Inn (Leeds East)
- The Yorkshire Bridge Inn (Derbyshire)
- Hotel Hilton Olympia (London)
- The Victorian House Hotel (Glasgow)
- Hotel Premier Inn Kensington (London)