There’s two parts to this review. The review of the main house rooms and the review of the cottage rooms. They are vastly incongruous. And of course only one is worth staying in. So let’s start this review from the beginning.
The Salutation Hotel is the highest rated hotel in Sandwich Kent. 5 stars. Rooms vary in price based on availability of course, but when I went it was over 250 pounds per night. It’s the most expensive boutique hotel in Sandwich. It’s consistently 100 pounds more per night than any other hotel in Sandwich. When people asked us where we were staying, they were immediately impressed and asked us how it was. So it’s that kind of posh hotel.
We ended up here on a fluke. When I booked hotels four months prior, the majority of hotels were sold out. Apparently Sandwich is a big wedding destination. So the Salutation was sold out, the Blue Pigeon was sold out, the Bell Hotel was sold out, as was Princes. I was able to get a room for 70 pounds a night at the Fluer de Lis. The Fluer warns that the live music will keep you up so I wanted someplace else. (Note: the Fluer is the hot-spot bar in town. We went twice and the live music is LOUD). I kept checking for availability and ended up with two nights at the Bell and two nights at the Salutation.
The Bell hotel was great. So check out my review for that hotel. Coming soon. But let’s get to the Salutation.
The Salutation is a country house built in 1912 by Edwin Lutyens. The highlight of the House is the 3.7 acres of award winning gardens. Simply stunning. There’s also a gourmet restaurant. It’s as romantic as it sounds. And it’s all set right off the main drag of Sandwich. A two minute walk gets you to bars and restaurants and the heart if the city. It’s the perfect location really.
It has a private parking area which was very convenient as the other hotels in town did not. A walk through the main doors leads you to the front desk. After check in, they take you around. The hotel is designed in a series of small rooms. Just like you would expect in an old country house. There’s a library and cozy bar along with central dining rooms facing the gardens. All quaint and comfy.
We were escorted to our room in the cottage. I had no idea I had booked separate from the main hotel and was intrigued. The cottage is across from the main house. It has a set of old fashioned keys, which really are harder to use than they appear. You enter the cottage and there is a kitchen, bathroom, dining room and living area on the first floor. The second and third floor include three more bedrooms with bathrooms. Each room has its own keys. So there can be any number of people staying in the cottage with you.
Our room was on the second floor. It’s a traditional room with queen size bed. Furniture is old fashioned. And of course, open windows because there is no air conditioning. The bathroom is huge. Almost the size of the room. But guess what? It’s carpeted. Yes carpeted. One of the most unsanitary things I had ever seen. Around the toilet, i don’t even want to think who peed on that. And around the shower. So of course there’s mold all around the shower carpet. It was bizarre. And note, there’s spiders in the room. Little webs spread about like the room wasn’t cleaned in weeks. I’m utterly horrified.
We go out that night and end up drinking beers with staff and let them know. That night room was warm but we slept soundly. That may have been the beer. But in the morning, the staff had heard about our encounter the previous night and moved us into the main house.
What a difference! We were assigned the Edwin Lutyens room. A gorgeous spacious room on the third floor overlooking the gardens. And the big bathroom had tile! No carpet. The king bed was super comfortable. It was literally night and day from the cottage. We loved this room.
Fun fact. While filming a movie, Anthony Hopkins refused to stay in the cottage. Instead, Emma Thompson stayed in the cottage and Sir Anthony stayed in the main house. I guess I have discerning tastes.
We never had dinner or drinks at the hotel. The bar was very slow. And the gourmet menu isn’t my husbands style. We did have breakfast every day. The kitchen is stunning. It’s glass wall in the last dining room shows off the immaculate updated gourmet chef’s kitchen where staff is preparing food.
There’s a side table that includes yogurt, fruits, pastries and cereals. As well as a coffee area with juices. The orange juice was freshly squeezed. Then you have the option to order breakfast from a menu with traditional English breakfast or salmon or eggs Benedict, etc. Food was excellent.
Overall, we had a nice stay at the Salutation once we switched rooms. But I have to say, I don’t know if it’s worth the exorbitant price tag. I’m kinda torn between saving money and getting a bigger room at the Bell Hotel and spending the money for the Salutation. But either way, now you know the pros and cons of this hotel. Happy vacationing!