The next ‘Hotel Review‘ post is on the Best Western Forest Lodge, in the New Forest town of Lyndhurst. I was keen to stay at a Best Western property given the large amount of advertising the chain have been conducting, revolving around their “hotels with personality” strap-line. Best Western have almost re-launched themselves into the UK hotel market in recent months. Check out their website where you can follow them on Twitter and Facebook and watch their TV add. Times have moved on for the chain.
Overall, I was pleasantly surprised by this three star property. There were obvious improvements and extras at the hotel to try to stand out from its many competitors in and around Lyndhurst – such as free wi-fi (those regular readers of the blog know how much I love free wi-fi!), indoor swimming pool and sauna, all of which did actually make the property fit the “hotels with personality motto”. This hotel has aged over the years and was refurbished in 2007 whilst still retaining its Georgian features. The bedrooms have been transformed into modern and tasteful rooms with four-poster style beds. Check out the video to see more. Rooms come with everything you expect, plus a few extras that are nice to haves. Tea and coffee-making facilities, iron and ironing board, fan and flat screen television. Notable exclusions, and some reasons why the hotel can only be graded as three star include no safety deposit box in rooms (there is one in reception), no fridge/mini-bar and most obvious during my stay, no air conditioning in the bedrooms!
Breakfast was included in my rooms rate (just as well as they were charging just over £11 for a small cooked breakfast) but was freshly cooked to order and the dinning area was nicely decorated with chandeliers. The only down side to our dining experience – filthy high chairs that had clearly never been washed since they had been bought!
This hotel is in a good location for a stay in the New Forest. Lyndhurst itself is worth a short walk, but nothing more. The Best Western Forest Lodge is a good base for a stay and good value for money. One final point to all hoteliers – if your going to do a great thing and provide free wi-fi in all public areas and bedrooms, make sure it’s of a decent standard. Not only was this service down for a whole day after an apparent power-cut, when normal service did resume the speed of the internet was appalling – hoteliers, take note!