Are all Bed and Breakfasts and Hotels the same? Far from it! As well as managing Well House Manor (with a very light touch as we have an excellent team!), I stay in many different hotels in my main job role as an IT trainer. I come back with good ideas, with an insight into interesting alternative practises, and with some real horror stories too. And accommodation does need
to be different - especially in towns and cities that have many establishments you can choose from, such as London, Weymouth and Cambridge.
So what's the difference at Well House Manor? Let me describe a few of the things that make us different.
• Superior Rooms
. It's a policy decision - all of our rooms are larger than you would normally expect, fitted out to a very high standard, en-suite and with large flatscreen TVs, table space, large showers, plenty of mirrors, minifridge ... and, yes, that does mean that our price has to be a little higher than a hotel that's offering tired rooms with a smaller footprint.
• Corkage and takeaways
. I can't recall the number of times I've read "only food bought here may be eaten on the premises"; I know why it's done - it's done to leverage food sales, sometimes at elevated prices. A hotel I stayed in recently charged £20.00 per bottle if you brought in your own alcohol - ouch! We decided early on that running an evening restaurant at Well House Manor, and having an alcohol license, would be a loosing battle. And so we've taken a sustainable alternative. Guests are welcome to bring in their own bottles (there's an offlicense just 3 doors up the road, open until 10 p.m.), and their own takeaways. We even provide a list of who in Melksham will deliver to you, and we'll happily open bottles and plate up if you wish - at no extra charge. Sure - we loose a bit of income, but we gain a great deal in customer relations!
• Guests in room
. I'm astonished by the number of places that state "guests ONLY in rooms". If you're visiting relatives in Melksham, you're more than welcome to invite them up to your room. And if you've got a business meeting in town, by all means pre-plan with your colleagues in your room if you wish to. We've even had brides dressing for their wedding in their bridesmaid's room. We do draw the line at additional overnight guests; our rooms are let for one or two adults only.
• Card payment supplement
. Most of our guests pay by "plastic", and each of these means that we incur a processing charge. We've always resisted the temptation to recover these charges from the customers - the amount involved is usually much less than you might think from looking at the practises applied elsewhere, and if lots of people started paying by cash to save the charge, we would have other costs relating to the security of signifcant amounts of cash, and handling costs too.
• Breakfast service
. I love the occasional cooked breakfast. But, alas, I rarely have time for it, and eating a full fry up can leave me sleepy and with a heavy stomach; it's something for special occasions. And I'm not unique. So, breakfast at Well House Manor is designed to be a healthy alternative - a wide ranging continental breakfast. And we've gone further; we've made it into a buffet so there's no wait for service, no limit to the amount you eat - speedy and flexible. If you want to stop and talk, if you want our team to help you with a pot of tea and have a chat, they'll be delighted; we're well used to solitary and leisure guests, and we tune our service to suit each party.
. Yes, you may bring your dog. Please let us know ahead of time, please keep the dog off the furniture, and please clean up after your pet in the garden. Additional room cleaning IS carried out after we've had guests stay with their dogs - our intention is that following guests should find rooms spotless!
• Limited signage
. It's a pet hate of Lisa's to find signage all over a hotel, and a pet hate of mine to find such signage at knee height. We do have a few signs; the current WiFi code is at reception, the legally required fire exit signs and "No Smoking" are of course present, and we've got an impressive display of staff qualification certificates in the library. But all the rest of the information that's commonly needed is in the guest folders in the room, ranging from bus times through to how to adjust the heating. And at check in, we make sure to tell every guest to ask us if they have any questions.
• Guest Areas
. We have a breakfast room, library and lounge available at all times; that's great for meeting and greeting business contacts, family and fellow guests - or for your driver to wait for you if you're leaving for the airport in a taxi. Our branch of the Museum of Melksham
is formally open every afternoon, but we're happy to let guests browse at any time there are staff available - and that's from early morning right through the day and into the evening.
. We're not listed / offering rooms on any of the agency sites; unusually (because we actually teach delegates how to write such sites in our training business), we're more than able to look after our own systems. That both prevents inconsistent availability across sites (or double booking risks), and allows us to keep our prices down by 10 to 15% without compromising service. Please contact us and book direct via the links / details below
I've been selective in differentiators above. I could detail our smoking hut, our customer-friendly policy on early and late checkins and checkouts, out local knowledge and ongoing travel planning help ... but I'm sure you've got the drift. If you want to read more from the in room guest book, you can browse a copy [here]
• For the main hotel web site, go here
• To book online, go here
• Or call us on +44 (0) 1225 708225, or email email@example.com (written 2012-09-18, updated 2012-09-22)
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