Hello everybody! What superb weather we have been enjoying and that they are predicting for the next few weeks to come! We’re almost full in the cottages for the peak summer weeks now and with just a few gaps around the edges – it is really good value now – superb conditions and nature at its best and availability more likely as well. We haven’t changed our Hotel tariffs for some years now so come and take advantage of our great rates – it’s considered ‘mid-season’ at the moment, before we move into ‘peak’. If you haven’t seen our ongoing improvements or indeed the garden and now the beautiful rose over the pergola too, or the emus or Terry the Turkey and his entourage….
We had the misfortune of trying to book some overseas’ hotels recently – a simple request but if you don’t want to ‘book online’ but to check a few things before you go, it is becoming impossible! Even bigger groups – no email addresses on websites, no replies or specific enquiries met simply with a tariff list and no bother to do the calculations and advise a suitable proposal for the specific requirement. IF someone contacts us and has specific needs or wants to pre-check something we respond personally with bespoke arrangements proposed for what they have and we can cover other things which might not be easily available. For me, I don’t want to waste hours trawling over a hotel’s site to find that mobile signal is poor or wifi costs an arm-and-a-leg or is only available in the ‘public areas’ (an anathema to me and a reason to not stay somewhere) or that parking is a colossal extra cost. Maybe the day of the ‘Travel Agent’ will be returning quite quickly for busy people who see self-booking as a right hassle… and as I have said many times, the online sites are not the best rates either – for progressive hotels you secure better terms by booking direct as they don’t have to pay the commission then (did you know that?).
Then of course there is the other side – we receive enquiries and they can be quite specific, for a large group or whatever and needing particular things and so there are some hours devoted to doing some calculations and lots of toing-and-froing with the organiser/agent or whatever and then, even sometimes after a ‘pencilled-in’ reservation, we hear no more – it’s not good is it as a brief note wouldn’t harm simply to say ‘thank you but we have found something else’. Or the holiday agent who expects to offer a package on very keen terms but expects ‘us’ to take all the risks if they don’t fill the spaces, or the other who shared how awful the last hotel was and yet they only want to pay absolutely literally peanuts in a reasonably busy time of the year and well, what do they expect…?
Wedding enquiries are often the funniest ones, whether they are those expecting to feed and entertain 200 guests for £2000 and including some accommodation thrown-in or perhaps even a possible reservation over the peak Bank Holiday and expecting a big discount for rooms for their guests (when the event is elsewhere too I should add). Unfortunately sometimes the answer is – ‘er… lovely thought but unless your pockets are really deep best to not pick a date when everyone is on holiday in the number one coastal destination in the area!’
Anyway, you’ll find we are welcoming, friendly and an independent Hotel with unique and beautiful characteristics. Don’t come if Ikea is your style as it isn’t ours but if you enjoy characterful comfort at a sensible price and with historic roots back beyond the Domesday Book in 1086, we’re just the place for you and with a beautiful vista to boot.
Yes, it’s cream tea and High Tea season again and ours – well, are they the best in North Devon? You’ll have to come and sample them to find out! Our cream teas are £6.50 per person with a half cream tea for only £5. Of course really you are only paying for the staff service and the facilities (and VAT… ☹) and the cream tea is thrown-in for free so please don’t arrive and ask for one with three plates…. Yes, you’d be seriously entertained sometimes what some people will ask!
Do come and sample our new chef’s great offerings. Dinner is by prior reservation to avoid disappointment and the Restaurant is open Friday and Saturday nights and groups of six or more any night subject to availability.
At last… Devon County Council has tackled our Lane, their road. It has been atrocious for years – primarily from when they did a ‘surfacing’ in 2011 and they never called the contractors back to sort it out. There are still a few nasty pot-holes but the surplus debris which has been blighting our lives all this time has finally been moved and you can see the volumes of material which were clogging-up the road as they are now dumped on the verges – a phenomenal improvement!
This isn’t a negative criticism however but thanks and appreciation for what they have now done. A final sweep of the last debris would be good just to finish the job but regardless, it will be lovely to think that cyclists and motorcyclists can travel the lane without the impossible risks which they faced otherwise.
Hen Party High Tea And Cambridge High Jinks
They chose delightful weather to have a Prosecco High Tea outside, alternating between our Pavilion and in the sun! It was delightful to treat all the ladies for this special occasion. It was super too to entertain a large group of Cambridge Under-graduates who all stayed over and had a lovely time around the open fire by the barbeque pit – what weather to enjoy as well!
Still bane of too many hospitality businesses’ lives, it is a pleasure to be awarded a “Certificate of Excellence” from TripAdvisor! The company notes:- “We're pleased to announce that Trimstone Manor Country House Hotel has been recognized with a 2018 Certificate of Excellence, based on the consistently great reviews you've earned on the world's largest travel site.
Only select businesses receive a Certificate of Excellence! - Start telling the world that you’re highly rated on TripAdvisor.” Please excuse the spelling but it is an American company! Thank you to all those guests who have a great experience with us and who leave us five-star reviews!
Whatever you do, have a great summer and we look forward to seeing you sometime for some reason – and you will be most welcome!
Our very best wishes
Philip & Helen Milton