Shrigley Park, Pott Shrigley, Nr Macclesfield, Cheshire. SK10 5SB.
Tel : 01625 575757 FAX : 01625 573323
Contact : firstname.lastname@example.org „
There's only one thing better than a lovely weekend away in a lovely hotel and that's a lovely weekend away that someone else has paid for!
The hotel is question is Barceló Shrigley Hall Hotel, Golf & Country Club a 19th century country house, very much in a 18th century style and décor to match. Its 20 miles south of Manchester but extremely peaceful and quiet. It's also a great place to explore the Peak District from, but also to check out the hustle and bustle as well as a good stop off point for Alton Towers.
It was a family members 90th birthday and to celebrate a family reunion took place here. As people were coming from Finland, Dublin, Scotland and even Dubai many decided to spend the whole weekend. Even though we only live 30 mins drive away in Manchester we decided to take advantage of spending time with the family.
Due to picking someone up from the airport we didn't actually arrive at Shrigley Hall till nearly 2am. Its easy enough to find from Manchester lying right between there and Macclesfield. Its also signposted from about 4 miles away. Its easy to find on a SatNav and Google Earth with the website also having easy to follow directions. If you're coming on public transport however it's a lot more difficult. People were being quoted £60 to get from there to Manchester on the Friday evening, although to be quite frank I think that's probably extortionate and unrealistic. Its probably easier to get the train to Macclesfield or the Metro to Heaton Grove and then get a taxi from there.
Even so you won't be able to see it at first with a long winding driveway that seems to go on and upwards. Then this rather imposing building appears before your eyes with very little sign of life. There was a sign pointing to the reception, upper car park, spa, golf shop, etc.
Except at 2am and it being rather dark it isn't immediately apparent where the reception was. We, after a trip round the car park decided to head right for the front where two large, seemingly closed, wooden doors announced they lead the way to the receptions. Sounds obvious now I know!
If you do arrive at night please just take a look behind you and look across the scenery. The whole of Manchester is displayed twinkling for miles across. A blot on the landscape it may seem to some, but it gave an idea of just how high up we actually were.
One thing I did notice was that disabled access wasn't immediately noticeable, it was only in the daytime we noticed the side entrance for disable users. I usually dislike these kind on entrances but Shrigley Hall is a listed building and unable to make changes to the exterior.
Stepping into the hotel was an extremely warm relief to the freezing winds outside. The décor is most definitely regency rather than Victorian in style. There's lots of warm dark wood, imposing portraits, murals and frescos. The large reception also has an impressive wooden staircase, make sure you crane your neck upwards as there is the most magnificent domed ceiling in blue, white and gold.
The receptionist was extremely professional and friendly and got us through the process in a few moments. It would have been nice if the reception had more seats as it got quite busy at checking out time (and presumably at some checking in times), as even with 2 receptionists working as fast as possible there could still be quite a queue, leading to several people sitting on the stairs.
The receptionist then gave us directions to our room. With which we promptly got lost! The hotel has an extension on the back of it based around a very large courtyard. There's 3 stories of identical corridors, doors and carpet. The signs aren't the easiest to read although there are plenty of them. We ended up walking in a near enough circle and managing to wake quite a few people up! We were right at the back of the hotel and it took a far few minutes to get to our room.
The place is a labyrinth, there are stairs that don't appear to lead anywhere, lifts that go up 2 floors, but lead to dead end corridors. Finding the corridor to the spa was an interesting trek as well!
If you have kids and they are bored, take them to the furthest corner and challenge them to find their way back!
We finally got inside our room and the first thing we noticed was the bed. It was huge! Even stretching my arms across it I couldn't touch either side and it was so comfortable. Not too soft, but not rock hard. Just firm enough for a good nights sleep!
The room is large enough not to be dominated by the bed and has lovely furnishing, a large wardrobe with iron and board in it. A chest of drawers which also contained a slide out shelf with tea and coffee on it. There was a desk, a table with wine glasses and an ice bucket and two upright chairs. Of course there is the rather large flat screen TV.
The furniture isn't modern but heavily built dark wood. This is entirely in keeping with the hotel and pleasant rather than just old fashioned.
The bathroom is large as well, but parts were horribly old fashioned. Yucky pinkish marble effect surround for the sink and a shower curtain which felt the need to attach itself to my shoulder. It does have a very modern sink, shower and heated towel rail. Oh and I did bring home the complimentary toiletries!
The hotel room and bathroom were absolutely spotless, not a stray hair or speck of dust anywhere, even on the inside of the lamps. It also has blackout curtains as well which meant we spent rather more time in bed than we should believing it to be quite early in the morning! Our room was rather well soundproofed and we heard nothing from the people either side.
There is also room service but I cant comment as we didnt use it, but it seemed to be usual hotel prices. Wired and Wi-fi internet was also available.
After a lovely nights sleep it was time for breakfast which is served between 8.30 and 10.30., thankfully we did find a quicker way to the restaurant. The restaurant is very large and bright, tables were cleared quickly and smartly re-laid. Tea, coffee, etc were brought direct to the table in pots big enough for 2 or 3 cups.
There was a wide range of food, a self serve cooked breakfast of sausage, eggs, bacon, fried potatoes, etc, all well cooked and hot.
There was a toasting machine with all the condiments, various cereals, pastries, muffins and fruit. There was also orange and apple juice. All spills and crumbs were cleared away immediately by the very helpful staff.
In a nice touch on the Sunday morning the hotel opened up the private dining room for the reunion guests so we could all sit together, and extended the time of breakfast slightly.
On the Saturday we ate in a private dining room expertly hosted by one of the managers. Again it was a hot buffet served by the hotel staff, the food was superb especially the chicken curry,pasta bake, fish pie, salads and lots of bread. and the only grumbles where when it was found that I'd had the last piece of salmon! The tables were laid properly, different and correct types of glass, jugs of iced water and lemon, technically we were supposed to return to the bar to get our drinks, but the waiters happily obliged so we didnt have to keep getting up.
When breakfast had been dealt with it was time for relaxing. Its very difficult to review the whole of the spa as we used only a small amount of what they offer. Its practically separate from the hotel although you can pay for extra facilities such as massages, therapies, etc. They also do various spa days, hen party, wedding days,etc.
For the hotel guests the gym, pool, jacuzzi, sauna and steam room are free. Well, not the steam room because that's been broken since March. The gym was avoided but it was possible to see it was full of up to date equipment. The jacuzzi was lovely and warm, and the pool just a tad cooler. The sauna was horrendous and way too hot, but I believe it's supposed to be that way!
There were plenty of loungers to rest on and like everywhere else was very clean. There were plenty of showers to rinse off in and 2 good hairdryers to use. Towels were also provided.
Please be aware that the spa is now closed for complete refurbishment until March and the pool area is completely closed. The therapies may still be available but best to call and check first.
Of course we retired to the bar afterwards. Contrary to many hotels this one is large with plenty of tables, chairs and squishy sofas. Drinks are of course hotel prices, a bottle of wine is going to set you back £12, a pink £3-4 and we didn't even go near the spirits! They also serve soft drinks and have an impressive coffee machine. They do offer a bar food menu which I am assured is rather slow. They even do afternoon tea with plates of little sandwiches and cake tiers.
Our only niggle was that they closed the bar an hour earlier on the Saturday night than on the Friday with the explanation that there was too many of us. Admittedly there were around 20 of us and we were a little loud. Oh, and I must apologise to anyone who was in the bar and subjected to a round of Porno Password!
People drunker and less easy going than us may have been upset when they were refused service but saw another group continue to be served (which was what was happening)
The party did continue but only with one warning about the noise!
The hotel was very understanding the next morning when the 11am checkout wasn't strictly adhered to. Certainly not everyone had checked out before 12, not blaming the drink of course!
Shrigley Hall offers a late checkout, but it will cost an extra £10 an hour. Only one of the group were feeling the effects of the night before bad enough to take advantage of this whilst the rest of us went to sweat it out in the sauna.
Remember I mentioned the view at night? Its really quite impressive in the day, it overlooks the gold course and the garden. In the distance you could see the impressive city of Manchester. It must have been an absolutely stunning view when it had snowed.
Shrigley Hall is an extremely impressive hotel, and thoroughly not deserving of some of the reviews on the net. The service is excellent and the staff unflappable, when one relative was offered 5 different rooms before finally being happy with one they helped with smiles and good grace. I should mention that this was not because there was anything wrong with the rooms but because they didn't like the lighting, but she is 90 and can have any room she wants!
Its old fashioned, but fits together perfectly. The food and drink were good and the prices comparable with other hotels. It's isolated enough to enjoy the peace and quiet, relax or enjoy a round of golf but close enough to Manchester to pop in and enjoy the sights.
The price is what I consider extremely reasonable for a Country Hall Hotel at £90 for a room with breakfast. We thoroughly enjoyed our stay and would gladly visit again.
I also havent mentioned the gold course because no one used it, but there were plenty of players out there in the morning and the green looked well kept, I believe the reception is able to arrange lessons.
And if you managed to read all that you thoroughly deserve a holiday!
My partner and I wanted to book a weekend break to celebrate our recent anniversary in style. We thought we had found the perfect solution when we found the Barcelo website and the hotel that we eventually chose. Everything about the hotel on the website looked fantastic and we thought that we were going to have a 'stress-free', romantic and relaxing stay there. During the booking process the lady on the telephone (Lindsay) was specifically informed that our stay was for a special occasion. This was acknowledged more than twice and we were told that a note had been made and we would be allocated a room suitable for the occasion in the hotel.
How wrong we were!!
We arrived at the Hotel at around 3.00pm to be greeted by a rather busy and overworked receptionist. We were given our room key and left to our own devices, which was not a good start. The room was situated at the far rear of the hotel and was approximately a 10 minute walk from the reception which is a long way with heavy baggage for which we had no assistance.
Upon arrival to our room our first impressions were far less than perfect. The room was small and dingy and the view was of some temporary porta-cabins. There was also some damage to the bath enamel, in the form of chipping, roughly about the size of a 5 pence piece. To add to this there were also holes in the bed sheets, which we discovered later that evening at bedtime. A double room had been booked for our stay but to our dismay our bed consisted of two single mattresses. This surely equates to a twin room.
In the meantime, we decided to explore the leisure complex at the hotel. On the way there we passed a member of staff who was presumably a caretaker of sorts who was swearing in to her radio. Upon arrival at the leisure complex we were met by a friendly member of staff who informed us that we would have to pay for use of towels. However, our experience at the leisure complex was again unsatisfactory. I was greeted by a dirty changing room with mud, grass and used towels on the floor. The ladies changing rooms were in a worse state than the men's with a significant leak in the ceiling with buckets in the middle of the floor to catch the water. This changing room was also dirty with mud, grass and dirty towels left on the floor.
The swimming pool, steam room and sauna room seemed to be in reasonable order. However, the Jacuzzi did not work fully and the water jets only functioned on one half.
Earlier that afternoon we had booked our evening meal for 9.15pm. When we arrived at the restaurant we were left waiting for 5 minutes until a member of staff finally showed us to our table. This was unacceptable as there were no other guests waiting to be seated and no less than 3 members of staff standing around idle.
We ordered starters which were ok but nothing special considering the price shown in the menu. For our main meal my partner ordered Duck in plum sauce and I ordered the Rib-Eye steak. The steak itself was edible but the sauce was congealed and very unpleasant. My partner's meal was an absolute atrocity. One of my partner's favourite meals is duck in plum sauce and it made her wretch during the first mouthful. I tried a small amount and it had the same effect on me, tasting of vomit. On observing the other guests in the restaurant I think they were having the same sort of problems as numerous guests left without finishing their meals and a party of guests informed us that their turkey was severely undercooked..
We were also not informed by any member of staff, prior to our visit to the restaurant that there was a limit to what meals we could have. If I remember correctly this was £29.95/pp and had we exceeded this amount we would have been charged for this. At no time in any hotel I have stayed in have I experienced this when a half board option was booked in advance.
My partner was very upset about this and the catalogue of other problems so we decided to make a complaint to the Duty Manger called Emma. She was very understanding and offered to reimburse us for the cost of the meal. She also said that she would upgrade our room for the second night of our stay but not the first night as there were no rooms available. We duly accepted this offer thinking that we would be able to enjoy the rest of our stay in a more acceptable room on the second night. Shortly after we had made the complaint my partner needed to visit the toilets situated near the restaurant as she felt unwell from the meal she had ordered. She was horrified to find faeces spread over the floor of the ladies toilets. We then made a second visit to the Duty Manager to inform her of this.
However, we still had to stay in Room 241 on the first night. The room was situated in very close proximity to a wedding reception that was being held at the hotel. Unfortunately, we were 'blasted' with loud music until 1.15am and then woken up every half an hour throughout the night with inebriated wedding guests returning to their rooms. The use of foul language was appalling. I was later informed that this section of the hotel was reserved for members of the wedding party, so why were we given this room?
My partner felt very sick throughout the night and early morning which later developed in to 'full blown' Diarrhoea. The logical explanation for this would be to attribute this to the evening meal that she had taken a few mouthfuls of the previous night.
By the next morning we were very tired and exhausted after having very little sleep. As my partner was unwell during the evening she could not face another trip to the restaurant so we arranged to have our breakfast brought to our room via room service. When it arrived it was cold and almost inedible. After all that had happened we just wanted to leave the hotel and return home.
Therefore, we checked out on Sunday 12th October at around 1pm. This was overseen by the Duty Manager named Derek.
I must say that this is by far the worst hotel my partner and I have ever stayed in. I regularly visit hotels and guesthouses of all grades throughout the U.K. and abroad and have never experienced anything like the stay we had in Shrigley Hall. Although we were not charged for the full amount at time of checkout we have incurred many expenses due to petrol costs, kennels, catteries, and childcare as these all had to be arranged prior to our stay.
This was meant to be a very special occasion for my partner and I but it was completely the opposite. It was the most stressful and unpleasant hotel experience we have ever had. And to add insult to injury we were called by the hotel informing us that we had not checked out and that we owed £124.00 for the second night's stay and meals. However, I was given the final bill by the Duty Manager (Derek) at the time of our checking out. I paid the invoice in full by cash, and kept a copy for my records.
This final piece in the large catalogue of problems indicates that there are some very severe management issues at the hotel.
One of the so called perks in my line of work is that the business I work for occasionally decides that now is a good time to bring staff together in a bonding and self development session away from the workplace. While the benefits of such breaks for the workforce are usually short lived, it does give me the opportunity every year or two to enjoy the hospitality of hotels and there are some poor ones out there! One of the better ones I have visited is the excellent Shrigley Hall Hotel, located between Stockport and Macclesfield in a huge estate on the edge of the Peak District National Park. So, why do I consider it a better hotel than most others I have experienced? Well, firstly location. While most hotels can claim to be well located, this is usually because we are a relatively small nation which means you are within an hour of several nice places wherever you stay. Shrigley Hall is no different. Within easy reach of Manchester, Liverpool, Sheffield and all the various shops and museums you can possible mention, the great joy of this place is that although it is only 5 minutes drive from the main A6 road it is another world. Set in massive grounds, with its own golf course attached, you actually feel genuinely removed from the real world, sat in the green pleasantry that is rural Cheshire. The hotel itself appears to be huge. Previously a stately home, it was converted in the late eighties in to the four star offering we have today, complete with pool and well equipped health club. My only complaint while I was there was that the distance from the reception area to my room was a good 5 minute walk and not particularly well signposted. The check-in was quick and simple and I was offered a porter to get our bags and bodies to our room, although I chose to make my own way there. The room was a spacious double with an additional single bed sat in the corner. A coffee table, two well upholst
ered chairs, ample wardrobe and drawer space (a frustration in just about every other hotel I?ve ever stayed in) and the obligatory tea and coffee making facilities greeted me. The bathroom was the biggest I have ever encountered in a British hotel and the bath far bigger too. The joy of spending an hour in the bath with no kids hassling me was wonderful! Additionally, the shower was fully operational with easy to control water pressure and temperature. Oh, and I confess, I brought the spare complimentary shampoo and shower gel home!! The TV provided the range of terrestrial channels and BBC/local radio stations with the most exotic free channel of Sky News too. I did not investigate the rather interesting range of films that were available at £7.50 each per day! While the TV controls were cumbersome to use, I was not staying to watch the telly! My brief stay included three meals. An excellent lunch of pork chops and locally harvested vegetables, a superb evening meal of chicken fillet cooked around sun-dried tomatoes and served with gently steamed cabbage together with a wide range of desserts. Traditional English breakfast for the morning was hot, tasty and exceptionally unhealthy! As you would expect, toast, jams, coffee and orange juice came with it. The bar must be rather profitable. At £2.80 for a pint of cider, my tight northern wallet was struggling a little. It was a lively place however and while it suited the crowd I was with, those looking for relaxation with their drinks would be better driving to a local country pub, which would be both quieter and cheaper. Perhaps when the corporate crowds of the week disappear there is a different feel. Regrettably, I did not have the opportunity to play golf, although this can be arranged via reception. The course appears to be of an excellent (perhaps championship?) quality and I did notice some excellent stay over golfing packages including two or three roun
ds on the par 71 course. While I resisted the temptation to work out in the leisure club, I did spend half an hour in the deserted swimming pool removing the stresses of a hard day of corporate self-discovery. Sauna, spa, tennis and a beauty salon were also available. With standard B&B room rates at £49 per person and a range of seasonal pricing also popping up from time to time, this place appears to be fair value and certainly justifies its four star rating. Given the size of the place, I would suggest those who are a little slower on their legs might prefer to ask for a room nearer the entrance. Premium rooms and four-poster beds can be requested for an extra £20/£30 respectively. So, if you like golf, like Cheshire or simply enjoy genuine relaxation away from it all, this could be for you. Alternatively, persuade your company to put you up for free! Non-drivers can take an inter-city train to Stockport or Macclesfield and should have change of £10 for the taxi fare, but for those of us with our own transport, the hotel car park is free. Other places you may choose to visit nearby include the Trafford Centre, Alton Towers, Lyme Park, Manchester United Museum or simply watch the planes coming in at Manchester International Airport. You could also use this place as a stopover prior to your holiday, although I do not know what their policy is on letting you leave your car while you sun yourself in Corfu! More information at www.shrigleyhall.co.uk, www.paramount-hotels.co.uk or call 0500 342 543 / 01625 575757. I liked it!