Sunday, 16 December 2012

A Great Weekend, But...

We have just spent the weekend at Selsdon Park Hotel for Himself's work Christmas function, what a beautiful place and so full of history. 

All the ceilings in the public areas are wonderful and have been lovingly restored, I took loads of pictures of them but here are just a few.

This stained glass window was amazing too, this picture just doesn't do it justice, it must be outstanding when the sun is shining through it!

This window was beautiful too, and opposite it was the most stunning fireplace I have ever seen.

We booked in, then headed off in search of our room on the second floor. We couldn't find a lift so started to climb the stairs, which turned out to be a massive mistake, there were so many twists, turns corridors and small staircases both up and down. 

It was a very difficult climb with my limited mobility, I was very soon worn out and in extreme agony, we saw several members of staff but only one of them asked me if I needed any help with my bags, of which I didn't as I only ever take what I can carry, I never expect Himself or anyone else to carry my bags, I know I'm far to independent for my own good. 

Eventually we found our room and right next to our room was the lift so we had a laugh about that, but then noticed it was out of order.

I was far to exhausted to worry about it at the time, and we let ourselves into the room and had a nap to be ready for the evenings proceedings.
Here we are all dressed up and ready to go

Then we remembered we would have to find our way back downstairs again, as the hotel is so massive we set of in search of another lift on our floor. Up and down these little staircases and what seemed like miles of corridors, after the climb this afternoon to get upstairs my knees and back were in a pretty bad way, I was in agony and I was really struggling to walk.

 We found this beautiful corridor with a very old phone, we didn't dare pick it up to see if it had a ringtone but it was all wired in with a modern plug so guessing it is in working order still.

Eventually we found a lift that took us down to the lobby and we proceeded to make our way to the Tempest Bar and it was absolutely packed out, there were lots of large groups all meeting at the same time, it was like being crammed into a cattle truck, several times I was nearly knocked off my feet by people squeezing past and there was nowhere to sit, we had to stand around like that for approx 30 minutes and the whole time my body was screaming in agony until we were called for our meal. It was total chaos and very hot, I was starting to feel most unwell.

The food I have to say was outstanding, I had some sort of Duck Pate to start, Sea Bass as my main, which was delicious and for desert I had the most fabulous chocolate mousse which was very rich, I could have eaten two of them.

I couldn't stay for the entertainment as I'd had to take so many painkillers to get through the evening that I was starting to fall asleep. Because our room was so far away I decided to go to the lavatory before making the journey but was shocked to find the Disabled toilet was in the Gents, so Himself went in first to discover it was actually next to the Gents so I went in.

It wasn't very pleasant, as men had been using it and there was a lot of urine on the floor. We then set off upstairs, we opted to take the direct route up the stairs rather than use the lift and face the maze of corridors and stairs, as Himself had earlier found a direct route to our room whist I had been having my nap when he went outside for a breath of fresh air.

Once I was sorted back in the room, Himself went back downstairs to join his work colleagues and I had a bath and went to bed.  

As is usual I was up first and set off to find the Dining Room for my Breakfast, Himself isn't a Breakfast person so I left him to sleep. I could barely walk by this time and the agony I was in is the worse I have suffered in a long time, my painkillers barely touched it.

I decided to take a picture of each of the four flights of stairs on my way down to Breakfast, it was a very slow journey with many rest stops but I got there in the end.

I was feeling very shaky by the time I got to the Dining Room and had to sit at my table for about 10 minutes before I could summon the energy to go and get my Breakfast, which took me six trips as I only have one hand free as I couldn't do it without my stick, and no offers of help were made by any of the staff.

Before I headed back upstairs to wake Himself and pack, I spoke to Reception about the stairs issue and all I got was "I'm sorry about that"

I've never before stayed in such a disabled unfriendly Hotel, it totally ruined the weekend for me which is a shame as it is a fantastic building.


  1. Sounds like a nightmare. Sometimes things break, like the lift, but I'm shocked that the staff weren't more helpful, or even apologetic about the situation.

    1. I accept things break and unforseen things can happen but I felt pretty much abandoned, I know its not always easy to put lifts into these old buildings but they never said a word about the lift being out of order when we booked in.

      Funny thing was, you know those things that you hang on the doorknob, there was one you could hang out if you were a vulnerable person, in an emergency a staff member will come and assist you. I said to Himself "Does that mean I get a piggy back down the stairs?" To which I was greeted with a stern stare....

  2. PS - meant to say, you both scrub up well - looking lovely and glamorous xx

    1. Ahhh thanl you Amy its really great to get all dressed up sometimes x

  3. What a disgrace! What if you had been confined to a wheel chair and didn't have the option of stairs at all!? The toilet situation is pretty unacceptable too. I'm so sorry to hear how much pain you were in, I do hope it has begun to improve. I think the hotel definitely need some written 'feedback'. You are right about the building though, so beautiful. I would have been in my element with all those fantastic features.

    1. I do love beautiful old buildings and love to look around them.

      I said exactly the same thing to Himself about wheelchairs, will be sendind a stern email to their head office later today.

      I never expect special treatment, but was totally given the brush off when I spoke to the reception. My joints and back are agonising today I'm sure its a result of all those stairs.

      I won't go back which is a shame as its an outstanding building x

    2. I do hope your joint and back pain start to ease. I'm glad you will be writing to them, its not about special treatment, it should be about customer service and removing as many barriers as possible so all customers can enjoy a stay there. xx

    3. I feel a lot better now thank you, a couple of days rest and I was back to normal again xxx

  4. So disappointing for such a lovley place. Seems to be they think nothing needs to be done to cater for everyone - very foolish in these days and times and will lose repeat custom too. I had assumed (but am only guessing) hotels, etc had to ensure they were wheelchair friendly?). I hope you are not in so much pain now Dawn.

    1. It really is the most beautiful place, I have since checked it out online and the history of it is amazing.

      On reflection I think the issue was a miscommunication as our room was next to the out of order lift and arrangements had obviously been made about where our room should be, BUT they didn't move us when the lift broke possibly because they appeared to be fully booked as there was so much going, it was very chaotic.

      It is a lovely place but I won't be going back anytime soon, as I really did not enjoy my stay, on a brighter note I did feel a lot better after a couple of days.

      It was great to see you yesterday and catch up xxx

  5. I'm really quite shocked that this happened to you. I don't know the place but most places work really hard to accommodate less mobile guests. Shame on them for letting you down, good on you for glamming up x.

    1. Thank you Lesley I do like to get dressed up once and a while, don't get so many opportunities these days now Himself has retired from the forces, it seemed never ending functions in those days...

      Was great to meet up yesterday and have a proper catch up with you Jill and everyone else xxx


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