Written on: 30/09/2010
First of all I have not stayed here since September 2008 but my first encounter with Michaelstow Manor was in September 2007 so that shows straight away that I was willing to go back and to be honest, looked forward to going back. I'll address the points that others have raised so hopefully people can draw their own conclusions. Firstly, yep the narrow lanes getting there are, at first, a little daunting but if you, like most others in the area, don't take them at break neck speeds there is abosolutely nothing wrong with them what so ever. It's the country side for pity's sake, not the middle of London! This is why we go there on holiday, for a change of scenary. If I wanted wide roads, I'd stay at home. Now onto the accomodation ..... Having taken a dog with me in the past, my wife and I were always limited to the Chase apartments which are tucked neatly at the rear of the grounds. Both times we have been on the upper floor and yes the windows are open on arrival which obviously will be to air the place out. Damp? Can't honestly say I've ever come across enough for me to even think about complaining. Yes the apartments are basic and space is a little limited but for the fact that a week here has never cost me more than £150 and think that represents excellent value for money. As for the expensive electricity meters, nope, I don't agree with that one either. Granted they are a little more thirsty than heating your own property but what do you expect? This is a business and they need to make a profit. We've never spent more than £11 in a week and we cook in there every night, the hot water was on for a few hours a day and many other electrical gadgets will have been on and/or charging throughout the stay. Staff have always been helpful and down to earth. I've only ever sampled the breakfast in the cafe and a takeaway at night and both times, everything was reasonably priced, presented cleanly and dealt with professionally. If I have to moan about anything, it would have to be the fact that when you are only paying £110 for two adults through Hoseasons, a surcharge of £40 for a small, well behaved dog seems quite extortionate but then again, it's my decision to go there with my dog. Here comes the moan. For this £40 surcharge, you would expect a higher level of cleanliness from the staff as the Chase apartments almost come across as a "second class" level of accomation, almost "stick the dog owners in there" sort of approach. I'm sure that is not the case as we've spoke to many other residents in the Chase section and a lot of them did not have a dog with them. I found that the first hour of our arrival tends to be tidying up someone else's dog hair off the kitchen floor and carpets. Surely for £40, that should have been taken care of "correctly" before we arrived? It's not a huge grievance but certainly one worth mentioning. Otherwise, the overall cleanliness of the apartment wasn't that bad but as always, we take our own cleaning equipment as anyone who is honest with themselves, nobody else's cleaning will be up to your own standards so we clean by choice, not though neccessity. Sometimes the dog walking area could tend to be a little, how can I put it, hazardous! Again not the fault of the Manor but that of those irresponsible owners who haven't picked up after their dogs. The bin is frequently emptied and is only a matter of yards away so laziness and/or lack of intelligence is to blame. All in all I have waffled for a while but I felt that some positive words needed to be expressed for this place. It's not perfect, granted, but for the money I don't think you can complain. I can't comment on the pool or the amenities as we pick the Manor as somewhere to sleep at night and make our evening meals so basic suits us fine. Oh by the way, for those of you who are reading this thinking that I can't possibly comment on a holiday that I had in 2007 and 2008, I am going to put my money where my mouth is, I'm going back there this Saturday (2-10-10) for a week. If anyone is interested, I will post a follow up review. If I don't follow it up then take this as I'm still happy there, who knows, I might increase my score from 4 to 5!