“This is a quirky cottage and like the curate's egg good in places bad in others.”
It is a disadvantage to be tall with low thresholds and an advantage to be agile with a steep and narrow staircase. Whilst we were grateful to be welcomed by a bottle of wine, chocolate biscuits, milk, coffee, crisps etc and there were ample pans, utensils, plates and glasses, we would question the need for a £250 damage bond (there was very little worth that!). Certainly the property was very clean and comfortable and in particular the downstairs bedroom, though lacking a wardrobe was roomy ...
It is a disadvantage to be tall with low thresholds and an advantage to be agile with a steep and narrow staircase. Whilst we were grateful to be welcomed by a bottle of wine, chocolate biscuits, milk, coffee, crisps etc and there were ample pans, utensils, plates and glasses, we would question the need for a £250 damage bond (there was very little worth that!). Certainly the property was very clean and comfortable and in particular the downstairs bedroom, though lacking a wardrobe was roomy and nicely carpeted. The rest of the cottage was in need of some TLC. We know the term shabby chic, well the word shabby could be applied to some of the rest of the cottage. In the lounge particularly, the two sofas were ingrained with dirt; some detachable, washable covers could have easily corrected this. Whilst the trunk that served as a coffee table was chipped and battered. Upstairs, whilst the bedrooms and bathrooms were very clean, there was an urgent need for a new shower curtain in the family bathroom as it was dirty and stained. Again this could be easily rectified at very little cost. Although the kitchen was perfectly usable, the worktops were wooden and simply painted, consequently the paint was chipped and peeling round the hob. Not a good look as we walked in! The double glazing on a number of windows has failed, restricting vision. There was also a potential safety issue with unlocking the front door from the inside, it had to be in just the right position for the key to operate. We wouldn't have liked to struggle with it in an emergency, so it was simpler just to use the bolt. Information in the Cottage Folder badly needs bringing up to date, there were brochures and bus timetables dating back to 2016! The garden however is superb with a wonderful collection of plants and flowers and myriad sitting out places, very peaceful and relaxing and with a delightful summerhouse and useful games shed. But you do not live in the garden. It is obvious that the Caretaker does a good job, but the owner needs to up the game as far as maintenance is concerned. Overall we would certainly not award the cottage the five ticks it is claimed to deserve. Sadly we would not return and wonder how many guests do. We hire cottages several times a year (indeed we have used Helpful Holidays twice previously) and are very familiar with the standards to be expected from a 5 star rated cottage, this does not meet them. Finally the joining instructions are out of date, Rousdon Garage is now a Kitchen/Grill and the Orchard Country Hotel no longer exists.
The owners are very proud of Marlborough Cottage and over the past 10 years have welcomed hundreds of guests to enjoy its peaceful location, wonderful garden and warm and comfortable interior. Each year improvements are made to update Marlborough Cottage so that its charming and unique appeal can be maintained and furniture is selected as such. The issues highlighted by the guests who stayed in July will be addressed as part of regular maintenance and upgrading of facilities. Some of these tasks can only be undertaken when the cottage is not booked by guests, such as professional cleaning of the sofas. There are no double glazed windows as far as we are aware. Locks will be checked. The Good Housekeeping Bond is set in relation to the potential costs of repairing or replacing damaged items. With regard to the directions, they will be updated to remove reference to the two Combpyne businesses which no longer exist, courtesy of the pandemic. We are pleased that you enjoyed your visit and found the cottage clean and comfortable. Property Owner