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Reviewed 21 February 2017

My husband and I stayed here on February 9th . What a beautiful spotless pub with rooms. Could not say one negative thing. Our stay was perfect. The staff management huge roaring fires, great breakfast, evening meal . Everything so clean and fresh. Well done to you all . We wanted to stay longer but there was no vaccencies. Thank you if we return to illumination this is where we will stay

Date of stay: February 2017
  • Trip type: Travelled as a couple
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Thank Janet H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 21 February 2017

My wife and myself, together with my wife's disabled father, enjoyed a relaxed lunch here. The Fish & Chips, the Beef Stew and the Beef Burger were all great and thoroughly enjoyed. Nice to have a Purity ale on draft as well!

Date of stay: February 2017
Trip type: Travelled with family
Thank Plain_Mike
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 17 February 2017

We arrived mid afternoon. The village of Ilmington is charming and provided a good excuse for a stroll. We spent the rest of the afternoon sat by a roaring fire in an inglenook reading a paper. It has a beautiful old bar, come dining room. The local cider went down well. Our evening meal was excellent and reasonably priced. Provision is made for gluten intolerance. Our room was gorgeous. We had the Oak room, tastefully decorated. The inclusive breakfast was yummy.

Room tip: The whole Hotel is beautiful.
Date of stay: February 2017
  • Trip type: Travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Thank 203jacquie
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 15 February 2017

This was our second short stay (of two nights) in the Howard Arms in the last 4 months. Both visits were thoroughly enjoyable with a great welcome, cosy rooms, and well above average pub food.

The pub seems to be two things in one. At the one end, there is the traditional English pub area with a cosy fireplace, bum to the floor easy chairs, flag stone flooring and plenty of seating. When we were there there were 4 good real ales on the pull at around £3.60 to £3.95 a pint.

Then on the other end of the bar there is the "Georgiany" dining room section with cosy lighting and well spaced tables. Food was of very good pub standard. The menu changed whilst we were there reflecting supplies of the day I guess, so my lesson for our next visit will be - if I see it order it, just in case it’s not on tomorrow. My wife had the duck breast which she thought excellent (not available second night). I had fish and chips which was very nice . I also really enjoyed the lamb kofta starter and the crumble desert – if I’m honest with myself, the crumble was too much, but I did really enjoy it.

Breakfast menus are on the web to be read. The scrambled eggs were very memorable – creamy tasting.

Our rooms for this visit were above the pub and facing the green. We slept in the “Country” room on this occasion. On our previous visit we had the “Cotswold” room which is in the rear of the above and accessed via a covered external corridor. Both rooms were very nice. The “Country” is smaller and cosier than the “Cotswold” Room, but both have high standards of furnishings. The Country Room had a smart TV and Ipod streaming facilities. No problems with noise on any of our visits.

We would definitely be happy to return.

Room tip: Rooms above pub cosiest in winter, rooms outside nice for summer
Date of stay: February 2017
  • Trip type: Travelled as a couple
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Thank Two_Fogies
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 13 February 2017 via mobile

My boyfriend and I stayed at the Howard Arms on 11th February 2017 for one night. Upon arrival, we entered the bar area and was not welcomed by a warm smile or a nod to let us know someone would be with us shortly. Instead, the barman was at the computer, with his head down and ignored us. Once we were finally acknowledged, he had to wait for his colleague to finish her chat at the other end of the bar, before we could be shown to our room. The lady said 'hello', however came across as extremely awkward. Once she had our room key, we were then asked to wait again whilst she dithered around the bar, not speaking or making eye contact with us. "I'll show you to your room" was the indication to us that we should follow her, as she walked off.

We were shown to the Summer Room which was beautiful but unfortunately not the room we had booked. When my partner explained this to the lady, not attempt was made to find out why we were in a different room or what had gone wrong. We were simply told "oh, I don't know what has happened, so are you happy with this one?" I felt pressured to say yes, but only if the room was made the same rate as the one we had originally booked, which she kindly agreed to. A rushed introduction to WiFi codes and breakfast was given, and she abruptly left.

This check in service left us in a bit of a spin and feeling like we had been a complete nuisance, rather than paying guests.

At dinner, we were shown to our table in the smart dining room, only to be moved to a drafty window seat in the bar. We asked to be moved again to a warmer table, which the waiter kindly obliged to. Our dinner was really lovely and not overpriced. The service throughout the meal was fantastic and the atmosphere was great.

Our room was really smart and clean on the whole. The shower head had not been cleaned, so when it was turned on, water shot everywhere because limescale had blocked so many of the holes. It took 5 minutes to clean, so the shower worked properly, but that shouldn't be something you have to do when paying £130 per night at a '5 star' BnB. There was also a large dust ball of hair rolling around the bathroom floor. The decor was beautiful, with a stylish bathroom and funky patterned cushions. The bed was unbelievably comfy too, so we both got a great night's sleep and were awoken to beautiful bird song.

Breakfast was really lovely and we were served by a lovely, albeit rushed waitress. Checkout was smooth and quick.

If the price had been lower, I would have given 4 stats, but the reality is that the price did not reflect the service I expect at a five star establishment. I would recommend the dining at this pub, but not the bed and breakfast. Some of the staff need training in how to make guests feel welcome and valued.

Date of stay: February 2017
Trip type: Travelled as a couple
Thank Sophie C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Robert J, General Manager at The Howard Arms, responded to this reviewResponded 17 February 2017

Dear Sophie C,

Thank you for your recent review, all feedback is taken onboard and where improvement is required is acted on.

I have checked your booking and can see that we had upgraded you for the same price you were quoted for The Old Beams rooms, I am sorry this wasn't explained at the time of check in. I shall ensure we have another full training session upon check in procedures to ensure all relevant information is given at the time, especially in light of having a number of new members of staff.

In relation to the table you were given, this is one of the popular ones with our regular customers, however I am glad you were able to move tables and that you enjoyed your meal and the service.

I am glad you had a good nights sleep, the cleaning issues have been taken up with our housekeeping team to make sure this never happens again.

I do hope you would contact me personally at your convenience to discuss having you back and to show the full scale experience we do offer and so many return for.

Kind regards

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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