“ Address: Balmoral Road / South Shore / FY4 1HR / Tel: 0871 984 6191 „
When we decided that we fancied returning to Blackpool this year, we decided to go by train rather than as part of a package tour. We decided to book a Travelodge for our stay. There are two Travelodge hotels in Blackpool but we chose the one that best fitted our needs. We stayed here for 5 nights (Wednesday to Monday) and this review discusses our experience of this hotel.
~Travelodge South Promenade~
0871 984 6191
This hotel is located right next to the Pleasure Beach and is a few minutes from both the South and Pleasure Beach rail stations. It takes only a minute or two to walk to the hotel from the promenade and it is in close proximity to both the Sandcastle and the South Pier. Trams and buses stop here too. There is an on-site car park which can accommodate 16 cars at a cost of £8.00 per 24hour period.
We arrived into the Pleasure Beach rail station and hopped in a taxi with our suitcases. This hotel was in a perfect location for us and looks very clean and modern from the outside. It is perfectly suitable for those in wheelchairs and with pushchairs. The hotel is fully non smoking. Check in is from 3pm and check out is by 12pm but you can extend this for a charge.
We booked this hotel through the Travelodge website. My friend allowed us to make use of a family and friends discount and it was very easy to book. We booked five seperate nights to take advantage of a special discount and printed off the emailed documents. Payment was taken there and then as we were booking a saver price rather than a flexible price. We paid £14.99 per midweek night and just short of £50 for the Saturday night which I felt was good value for money. During our stay, a couple arrived and paid around £67.00 to check-in for that night. I would advise to book in advance as rooms start from £19.99. They offer double/twin and family rooms.
We arrived at the hotel just after 3pm and were checked in quickly. We were given a key card which is needed to access the hotel after a certain time and to gain access to the different areas of the hotel and of course, our room. Check-out was a simple task of handing in our key card. Because we had booked seperate nights, our key card needed re-activated each day but this was a quick process.
We met a few staff during our stay at this hotel and found them to be helpful and friendly. At busy times, they did seem to be short staffed and we often found the receptionist doing multiple jobs including serving food/drinks. One particular lady was very friendly and chatty towards our son which I appreciated. Our rooms were cleaned daily and beds made but we didn't actually see the maids as we were out early.
~The Hotel and Our Room~
The hotel in general was very clean and tidy throughout. On entering, the reception, bar area, toilets and a vending machine were there. Rooms are located over three floors and in two different sections of the hotel. Access is via stairs and lifts. We were on the third floor so made good use of the lift. I was pleased to see that our room was at the front of the hotel and overlooked the Pleasure Beach! We had room 306 and it was easy to find as the hotel is well sign posted.
We booked a family room which included a double bed and a sofa bed with a pull out section underneath. Our room was very spacious and very typically 'Travelodge'. If you are looking for something special and fancy then you won't get it here. The room had white walls, a white blind (and no curtains!) and the only decor was a red printed picture on one wall. I would describe our room as being comfortable for my little family. Travelodge don't really offer space for you to store your clothes but we did have a ledge with some coat hangers, a long mirror and a desk/chair with a kettle and coffee sachets.
Our room was clean. We slept well and found the sheets and pillows to be plentiful. Our bed had built in lights which looked really cheap and silly. The lighting in the room wasn't great as one light was too bright and the other didn't work and had no cover on it. My sons bed wasn't made on arrived and whilst he never complained about being uncomfortable, I lay on his bed and found it to be too 'springy' feeling - I couldn't have slept there!
The bathroom was clean and stocked with a small bar of soap, plastic cups and toilet rolls. We were also provided with a good supply of towels which were replenished daily as and when required. The bathroom had a smaller than average bath and a shower head over it. I really wish Travelodge would allow the shower head to be adjusted but it is stuck to the wall and is quite high up. We found the shower to be easy to control and there was a plentiful supply of hot, powerful water.
Whilst there was no curtains in the room, the blind did a good job of blocking out all light. We experienced various weather whilst staying here and some nights we had to open the windows for some air. The windows only open a small way and could have been cleaner. When closed, all noise was blocked out but we did experience a small amount of noise from others in the lobby. The heater was easy to control and warmed the room up quickly. A small television was mounted to the wall but was very temperamental - not all Freeview channels were there and they seemed to jump about quite a bit.
Overall, we found our room to be fine for our needs. We aren't overly fussy people and as long as it is clean and spacious, we are happy. We didn't mind living out our suitcases for 5 nights and found it comfortable to relax in at night when it was cold and wet outside. Wi-Fi is free in the cafe bar area of the hotel but is supposed to be charged in the rest of the hotel (from £5.00 per hour). We took the laptop to watch films at night and managed to log in to the internet from the third floor for free - wahey!
~Food and Drink~
This is the first Travelodge that we have stayed at that have a cafe bar. This area isn't huge but is clean, tidy and comfortable to sit in for something to eat. They serve breakfast here from 7am-10am (I think) and other food from 5pm - 10pm. There is a 24hour service offering pizza and other snacks. We had our breakfast here on two mornings and our dinner one evening. We chose to eat out on the other days.
Breakfast is £7.65 and children eat for free. The breakfast here is usually served on the bar and on a hot plate but on our last day, they weren't bringing food out and were only offering a 'plated' service which was rather annoying as we were paying for a buffet breakfast! Anyway, the food was plentiful when served up properly and we enjoyed it. There was a nice selection of cooked items including scrambled eggs (no other types of eggs), sausages, bacon, beans and tomato. The sausages in particular were delicious and we all loved them.
Also included in the buffet is fresh mandarin and grapefruit, croissants, muffins. bread to toast, yoghurts and various boxes of cereal. Apple and orange juice were included as was coffee and tea. There was lots there and we enjoyed our breakfast and considered it good value for money. We did find that there was a much better selection at the nearby Brewers Fayre though even if it was a little bit more expensive but I do feel that they do well to offer a cooked breakfast. A breakfast bag is also available. Food is replenished and served piping hot.
As I said, we had dinner here once as we wanted to try out other restaurants for dinner. I highly recommend the Grill at the end of the road as it offers delicious meals. Anyway, the dinner menu was varied and there is something to suit all including soup, fish and chips, burgers, lasagne and pizza alongside delicious desserts. Children have the option of 5 meals including macaroni and cheeseburgers. Prices are fairly reasonable given the portion sizes.
We opted for a combo sharing platter for two which included chicken wings, gourjons, bacon skins and other nibbly treats which was lovely. We followed with a burger platter for two which my fiance found to be okay but nothing special. It included little burgers, chips, onion rings and sauces for dipping. We shared a sticky toffee pud which was divine! Our son had chicken teddies with chips and ice cream for dessert which he enjoyed. I believe we paid around £30.00 for our meal including drinks which was good as it filled us up well.
Drinks in the hotel are quite expensive. £1.65 for a Fruit Shoot and £1.40 for a bottle of water or a 200ml bottle of Pepsi. My fiance bought two bottles of Budweiser for £6.00 and there is a wide range of spirits and alcopops available. The bar area isn't somewhere I would choose to sit and relax with a drink though. The vending machine was also expensive - £1.20 for crisps and 80p for chocolate.
This hotel was fine for us and we were happy with the standard of room and service. It isn't perfect but for the price we paid, it was better than I expected. I have stayed at four Travelodge hotels and found this one to great and we would happily return. The Pleasure Beach is literally on your doorstep - so close that when you look out the window, you can see inside the Valhalla and can watch the Big One rollercoaster doing its rounds - just ideal for us!
Thanks for reading :)
Going to Blackpool for a couple of days over the school holidays in April has become a tradition for me. We book accommodation for a couple of nights and spend a day at the pleasure beach and another day doing something different. This year my accommodation was the Blackpool South Promenade Travelodge where I had booked two rooms for just £19 each per night when Travelodge had their sale on, normal prices will be around £50-£60 for a room.
As far as location goes the South Promenade Travelodge is right in the centre of the action; the hotel has the Pleasure Beach on one side and a ghost train of some description and mini golf course on the other. Sandcastle water park is just across the road and South Pier is less than a minutes walk away. This location makes it ideal for a short family break as all the main attractions are either a very short walk or a short tram ride away.
I arrived by car, one of the attractions was the fact that the hotel has a small secure car park. It is not possible to reserve parking spaces and it is a case of first come first served as to who gets one of the 16 spaces (5 of which were disabled spaces). Luckily I got one of the teeny spaces which cost £8 for 24 hours. The parking fee is around average for central Blackpool but I was annoyed that you could only pay in full 24 hour increments, watch out for the small print on the board which states that the company will place a lien on your car if they give you a ticket so make sure you follow the rules. The parking for the hotel is very limited but there is also a large private car park next door with similar fees.
Check in was an entirely painless process, I simply had to quote my surname and postcode and was given the keycards to the rooms. The rooms are over four floors; there are lifts to use so you don't have to drag your luggage up the stairs.
I had booked both a family and the double room which were next door to each other. Both rooms were rather sparse looking with plain white walls, white blinds instead of curtains, a wall mounted flat screen TV with freeview channels, small wardrobe with hanging and shelf space and a desk with a single chair and tea and coffee making facilities. The double room had a small double bed with a wooden frame with tiny bedside shelves and reading lamps and added to this in the family room was a red sofa with a pull out mattress underneath providing sleeping space for two children. My room had windows on two sides of the room and good views, well they would have been nice views if the outside of the windows were not so filthy it was hard to see out clearly! Apart from the windows everything else was spotless.
The double room had a small bathroom with a shower, sink and toilet which seemed to be really low down and the family room had a bath with a shower. The only toiletries provided are a small bar of hand soap and cheap toilet paper which shreds upon contact with moisture. The shower was amazing in the morning as it was so powerful and there was plenty of hot water, the bath was fairly small so not great for a long luxurious soak. There were plenty of fluffy white hand towels and huge bath sheets provided.
There is a fairly small café bar on the ground floor which serves breakfast, snack meals and alcoholic drinks. We didn't bother booking breakfast as at £7.50 per person it seemed overpriced for a limited selection of cooked and continental foods. The café did not seem to be used much, I saw one family eating pizza and chicken nuggets in the evening and from what I saw of the menu it is all processed food which is heated up by the bar staff. I went into the café in the evening to see if they sold fanta as they had none in the vending machine but they never had any, there is a very limited range of bottled beer and premixed spirits on offer. Because the bar has the feeling of a cafeteria I didn't really fancy sitting there to relax in the sterile atmosphere. There are plenty of places to eat and drink within a couple of minutes walk of the hotel so you will not go hungry if you choose not to eat in.
The staff were exceptionally friendly and helpful and were happy to supply a spare duvet and extra coffee and milk on request. When the kids decided they wanted some Chinese food the receptionist even gave them the number of his own favourite take away so they could get a delivery!
My double bed was really comfortable and I slept amazingly well despite the three pillows I used being really thin. The sofa bed was fairly hard but an extra duvet was supplied upon request to cushion it and was comfortable after that and small kids would be happy there but the problems start to arise when you have adult sized teenagers. I was worried that the hotel would be noisy due to the central location but due to the double glazing I never heard a thing from outside and there was no noise travelling from the other rooms either. My only slight niggle was that the blinds did not completely block out light as there was a small gap between the edge of the blind and window frame.
Overall I was really happy during my stay at the South Promenade Travelodge. The location was perfect for us and although the rooms are basic we managed to sleep well and have a good shower which was the most important thing. I would have given the hotel five stars if it wasn't for the minor niggles of a dirty window, lack of curtains, slightly hard sofa bed and horrible toilet roll but these things were not bad enough to spoil our stay. It was my first time staying in a Travelodge and I was pleasantly surprised at how comfortable it was and it is certainly superior to the more expensive Premier Inn we stayed in last year which is just a mile or so away. This hotel is ideal for families for a short break in Blackpool especially if you are going to the Pleasure Beach.