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The Old Vine in Winchester, UK

I was pretty excited to book The Old Vine Hotel in Winchester, UK, because it is an old inn and pub with good reviews across the street from Winchester Cathedral. My husband and I arrived on what turned out to be the hottest September 6 on record in England, and were dismayed when we were led to our view room on the top floor: Despite all the windows being thrown wide open, it was like an oven in there. There was some kind of AC unit sitting on the floor with a hose running out the window that did not seem to work, and the young woman who took us upstairs did not know how to work it and didn't seem interested in getting us help with it either. My husband and I booked a room instead at the Winchester Hotel and Spa, which did have AC and reasonable rates, and went there as soon as we cancelled our stay at the Old Vine. I do understand that AC is not the priority in Europe that it is in many parts of the US; I guess it was the staff indifference to helping us be comfortable that disappointed me the most. I can't recommend staying at The Old Vine.

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5360 posts

The Old Vine is an inn dating back to the 18th century and there are restrictions on what can be done with such buildings, installing ugly A/C units is one of them.

Newer built hotels will usually have A/C but it's a trade off, do you want quaint and historic but without A/C or more modern but less characterful with it?

As for the particular member of staff, I wouldn't write the hotel off just because of her response, instead I would contact management and raise the issue with them. After all, there are other staff members who may have been more helpful. Personally I've had good experiences at The Old Vine although I've never stayed there.