The Ickworth Hotel4.5 out of 5.0
Recent guest reviews
Fantastic looking Hotel but let down by food and hygiene. We stayed at the Hotel Friday & Saturday night. As we arrived early our room was not ready but this gave us the opportunity to find our bearings. Beautiful building. Eventually shown to our room by FoH who slightly confused and apologetic announced it was a small room for 2 adults & 1 child also mentioning the room is usually reserved for couples only due to its size. Not great. We had booked months in advance and our daughter was booked in their nursery .. did they not have enough time to book the correct room for us .. at least 2 months!? We had no other option but to stay in this room. It was adequate for our needs apart from the safety issue of the window seat and our expert climbing toddler! Hardly relaxing! Meals were taken in the Conservatory. Warning. At the time of our stay the heating did not work. This part of the building was FREEZING, adults and child were complaining and even the staff said it was so cold all the time. We had to borrow a heater from the waiting staff on the Friday but by Saturday these ugly contraptions with wires everywhere ended up littering the floor but at least the temperature was up a few degrees. Our dining experience was cold all round. To charge high prices for dishes one would expect them to be cooked to a high standard and be a total delight. Not at the Ickworth. Venison well done and medium seems to translate to medium rare or rare. Vegetables were served in a crockery pot that had more chips and cracks than some parts of the building. Just lacking attention. Probably due to them being Frozen. One of the serving staff bordered on rude. We clearly put her out by asking for the Venison to be taken back. The Ickworth should take note that the Conservatory needs a thoroughly good clean after each service. On each occasion we sat in there we could still see pieces of food on the floor and it had some kind of stickiness to it usually on reserved for bar floors. The cushions on the wicker chairs are hiding a medley of food substances and unidentifiable ‘bits’ and the arms need a good wipe down. Its such a shame. High Tea for the kids was fabulous. Great food, clean. Bit slow on brining out water. But if we had to choose. I would of preferred to eat the High Tea menu. Swimming pool, bikes, grounds and Michelle in the Nursery all get a thumbs up. When presented with the bill we mentioned to the Receptionist our thoughts on dining. Rather than apologise or suggest speaking to a manager she enquired if we had stayed at any of their other hotels. I am unsure what relevance this had. But yes. We stayed at their sister hotel at Foy. It was delightful. Ickworth needs to speak to the Dining team at Foy and follow their lead. Children were treated with respect. Food was superbly presented and most of all it is clean. Sadly not worth the money.
The service was poor and lacking any managerial presence. Food was cold, especially the roast potatos. Man was hoovering in hall, which is unpleasant whilst dining. Gone down hill from previous visit.
Lovely grounds,miles of area to walk with out two well behaved dogs. Shame they are not allowed off the lead anywhere! But don't go out in the dark!, hardly any outside lights, quite dangerous, very difficult to see where you are going. Staff very friendly and helpful. Breakfast excellent. Strange system for ordering your meal at night or getting a drink. Food very good but not if you are hungry, very small portions. Overall a pleasant stay. Our double room was quite small with two dogs.
We were treated to Afternoon Tea which was served in the pleasant ambiance of their conservatory. There was a selection of ‘teas’ to choose from and the selection of sandwiches, scones and cakes were really tasty. The staff were both attentive and very friendly making us feel welcome. The front steps are poorly lit to the car park and unmarked without a hand rail - they are difficult to negotiate and no I don’t need a ramp- just better lighting and a rail!
The hotel forms a part of the Vast and Impressive historic Ickworth manor with grand gardens in a beautiful area with gigantic ancient trees surrounding the property...the rooms are full of interesting features and history...there is a great pool, free bike hire, play room for kids and one for adults with table tennis and air hockey. Plus a spa.Tennis, badminton and cricket gear available.The bedrooms had great views and we slept well. The staff were attentive.. we enjoyed a tasty afternoon tea and a dinner on both evenings of our stay. Breakfast -full english(not stated on menu)and fresh fruit, cereals and more was excellent. Chef and team were enthusiastic and pleased when meals were complimented and made us laugh.
We stopped by here for afternoon tea on Sunday, or at least we would have if any of the staff could be bothered to speak with us. We waited to be served for about 15 minutes then gave up and went off to find somewhere in Bury St Edmunds. Pity really, stayed here 3 years ago and it was a lovely experience. Don't forget the one thing that differentiates a good quality establishment from lesser places is the service. You would do to remember that Ickworth Management and ensure all your employees also understand it.
The Ickworth is a lovely building for a hotel. We had a very nice, quite large room (Blomfield), which was in very nice shape. They provided an extra bed for our 7-year-old at no extra cost, and there was still plenty of space. And the grounds are lovely: over 1500 acres of woodland and fields in beautiful rolling Suffolk countryside. But there are some strange anomalies. It bills itself as a "luxury family hotel". And thereby hangs a possibly unresolvable contradiction. Is it possible to combine real, adult luxury with child-friendly facilities? Well, yes – up to a point. But there are issues: the restaurants serve the same menu: one is adults-only, the other open to families with kids. The adult food is very expensive: we had £33 per person towards the cost of dinner as part of our Travelzoo deal, but it barely covered 2 courses. And the portions were tiny! My partner's venison consisted of two pieces, each two bites big. Price: £23. And there was almost nothing else on the plate: no veg, no starch... The food was good, but by no means outstanding. We thought it might have been ok on a 7-course taster menu. On the second night our server was wise enough to tell us that we needed to order side dishes to make it a full meal. We ordered all 3 at an extra £10.50, and almost felt full. The kids' menu was £8, and the portions were smaller than we have come to expect in other, much less expensive places. It's hard for me to believe the more affluent the family, the less the children eat... There is a nice pool, but it's hardly kid-friendly. For a start, it has no shallow end. It's 1.4 metres throughout – too deep for a 7-year-old who doesn't swim well yet. And there's no slide or anything kids might enjoy playing with (just some floats and noodles). It felt much more like a spa pool than a family fun pool. And there's no bar. There's a drawing room, and a server passes through occasionally and asks if you'd like a drink. But there's no list of what they have to offer (I don't think you're supposed to ask about prices!), so it depends on his or her memory. The staff were friendly and polite, and the young women serving in the restaurant were doing their best to serve everyone and stay cheerful, but it was clearly understaffed – particularly in the morning. It took ages to order something other than what was on offer on the buffet, and both mornings it then took more than 20 minutes to arrive at the table. The facilities for children were good: free bikes, a playroom with computer games, table football, table tennis, etc. But we discovered some of them by accident. There is an outdoor play area (The Fairy Garden) for little ones in a garden adjacent to the hotel, but it's not on any map or facilities list! And the map of the grounds is incomplete and really misleading. So a mixed bag. I'm not sure they've quite figured out how to reconcile their twin aims of luxury and family-friendly. At the moment they seem to fall a bit between the two stools. But they were receptive when we mentioned portion sizes being way too small (for the money), and they do seem to want to make your stay comfortable and enjoyable. We would probably go back, but only if we could get as good a deal as we had this time – and better armed with knowledge about what to expect. And the grounds are spectacular.
Although our complaint was dealt with in a very friendly, positive and professional manner this doesn't change the fact that the quality of the hotel and food do not live up to the price being asked. I'm afraid I cannot recommend this hotel and would not spend my money trying one of their sister venues. Maybe when the kids are babies and toddlers you're willing to pay anything to have a few hours adult time and an onsite listening service at night but we only ate lunch there on the first day and rather than being able to have a peaceful, relaxing time at the hotel had to find somewhere to eat for lunch and dinner during the rest of our stay.
We've just spent 10 days traveling Europe staying in 8 different hotels. The Ickworth was our first stop and by far my favorite. The surrounds are breathtaking, the staff friendly and efficient. We toured the estate including the church and felt very informed not to mention as though we had stepped back in time. Volunteers are full of information and happy to answer questions. The bed was comfortable, the room a bit small but set up well. I sincerely hope to return one day and spend more time. If you have any type of handicap or difficulty getting in and out of a tub, be sure to mention it. The room where we stayed would have been very hard on someone with that type of challenge. I did not as if they had handicap accessible. Be sure to ask if you need such accommodations. Overall a wonderful experience!
Firstly, can I just say wow! This really is the most beautiful hotel in spectacular sorroundings. So much so you could easily see this fabulous location and building being part of a Pride and Prejudice movie set, it really is breathtaking. My husband and I arrived with our teenage son and dog in tow and were immediately met by friendly and professional staff. If I'm honest, when I saw the elegance of the beautiful building, I had a slight worry it may be a bit pretentious, I could not have been more wrong, the atmosphere is relaxed and friendly, we were all made to feel very welcome (even the dog). After tea and sandwiches my husband and son went swimming while I had a glass of champagne over looking the beautifully manicured gardens, did I mention it was stunning? I then set off with the dog on one of the many walks surrounding the hotel. After managing to locate my son and husband in the games room (my son was very impressed they had all the latest games consoles) and drag them out of it, we went to Fredricks and had a fantastic dinner, compliments to the chef and the restaurant staff who were attentive. The bedrooms are elegant, well set out and clearly cleaned to a high standard, we all had a restful nights sleep. The icing on the cake for me was having breakfast in the stunning conservatory, you really have to see this room in the flesh to appreciate how beautiful it is. When you visit if you are not already familiar with ickworths past (I wasn't) ask a member of staff about it, if only the walls could talk I am sure it would have amazing stories to tell. Thank you to the fabulous team at The Ickworth Hotel, we will be back.
Reviews from Trip Advisor
71% of guests recommend this hotelTotal of 700 reviews