Reviews of Gleddoch House Hotel, Langbank
Review by Sparkytus on 16th February, 2009
Add your review Date visited: 14/2/09
My wife and I booked into Gleddoch for Valentine’s Day. Our booking was prepaid for the room and the meal. The decor in the hotel and the room were very nice. The pool and gym looked OK (we didn’t actually use them ourselves). The TV in the room was disappointing as certain channels (BBC2 and Channel 4) just had a blue screen. The main notable feature of our stay though was the meal. I want to describe some dining experiences I have never had before. Essentially the service was so poor as to be nearly non-existent. I’m not sure if this is because the hotel had not realised how many would be dining that night or whether scant resources also had to cover a function that was being held elsewhere in the hotel. When we arrived at the hotel, we were told that the restaurant would be very busy and we should book our table. We phoned the extension number given and were told there was only one slot left. It suited us fine so there was no problem. When we walked into the restaurant a few hours later though the staff had no record of our booking. They were able to give us a table though so again there was no problem. We had our order taken reasonably quickly. The menu was a fairly simple table-d-hote (perfectly satisfactory) with only a few choices for each course. We then waited. And waited. The maitre d and his two waitresses (sometimes supported by a third waitress and the barman from the adjoining bar) seemed to be unable to cope with the 20-25 tables (possibly 30, I didn’t count). However, they also didn’t seem to be rushing around from one table to another in a frenzy. At times they seemed to be standing around the corner, just out of sight of the diners, doing nothing. When our starters came, we hadn’t been offered bread. It was sitting in full view on a table by the wall. I was having soup. The waitress put the soup down but still didn’t offer bread. After a minute, I got up and helped myself to rolls for myself and my wife. About 10 minutes later, I heard the table next to us complaining about the lack of bread and I let them know I’d got my own. One of their number then got up, brought the basket over to serve his own table and then went on to serve several other tables until the basket was empty. This had the effect of galvanising several of the tables together and an open conversation ensued in which various tables talked to each other about how poor the service was. For most of the rest of the meal, tables only seemed to get service if they managed to attract the attention of the waiting staff to specifically ask for something. The staff seemed to respond by spending less and less time in the dining room…. Later in the meal, we heard one diner vociferously ask for some free wine to compensate for the poor service. They received it (some considerable time later). When they got up to leave, they loudly announced to the rest of the dining room that their wine had been free and advised us all to ask for free wine ourselves. Finally, one couple got up and addressed themselves to the maitre d. They had an animated discussion, during which they clearly stated that they had never received such poor service in their lives. Most of the other tables in the room burst into spontaneous applause. The sense of camaraderie in the room at that point then began to be a positive factor in the enjoyment of our meal as diners openly compared how awful the evening had been. My wife and I left before coffee, worn down (although still thoroughly entertained). We met another couple the next morning who told us they’d waited until 12:30am for their coffee. And still hadn’t got it. Needless to say, when we checked out the next morning we joined a long queue of people looking for refunds.
Date visited: 14/2/09
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