£38-a-night hotel in Llandudno named second best in the UK for customer service

For any other £38-a-night family run hotel, being ranked alongside expensive five-star establishments as having the best customer service in the world would surely be viewed as a dramatic victory.

But for Carol-lynn Robbins and her husband Ian, the owners of the Lauriston Court Hotel in the north Wales seaside town of Llandudno, the accolade is distinctly run of the mill.

Their 11-bedroom hotel is today named second in the UK, seventh in Europe and 20th in the world for customer service by TripAdvisor – and it is only the latest in a long line of awards it has won from the traveller reviews website.

Last year Lauriston Court was named as the best hotel in the world in the same category, and Mrs Robbins admitted that finishing second in the UK this year to the sumptuous Egerton House Hotel in London’s Knightsbridge came as a bit of a let down.

The owners of the Lauriston Court Hotel, Ian and Carol-Lynn Robbins The owners of the Lauriston Court Hotel, Ian and Carol-Lynn Robbins

“Yes, it is a little bit disappointing, but when you look at the hotel that came first there’s no way that we can compete with that,” she told The Independent. “They charge between £350 and £500 a night, and I read that they’ve got two staff per guest plus a butler. So I think we’ve still done ourselves proud to be able to come second.”

So what is the couple’s secret? Mrs Robbins points to her previous job as a nurse, saying she finds it “very easy to engage with people”, while her husband has spent a lot of time studying the best way to secure parking places for guests on the town’s crowded seafront.

“Because our hotel is small it’s very personal,” says Mrs Robbins. “We know many of the guests because they’re returning, and we pay attention to the detail. We try to anticipate what people may need – and we just love the job and love the place. Our place isn’t posh, it’s just lovely.”

Last October, the couple even acted as witnesses at the wedding of two of their regular guests. Mr Robbins was the chauffeur, taking the bride to the local registry office and making the groomsmen’s button holes, while his wife was employed as the official photographer.

But Mrs Robbins admits there is another reason that their modest hotel has finished so high up the TripAdvisor rankings in the four seasons that it has been open: impressing upon guests the importance of leaving reviews. She says the couple “embraced it from day one”, asking guests to put their compliments online and responding personally to each of them who did.

The Egerton House Hotel came top of the list of best hotels in the UK for service The Egerton House Hotel came top of the list of best hotels in the UK for service

Elsewhere in Britain, it seems that the South of England is the place to go for hotels with the best customer service. 14 of the top 25 were located below the M4 corridor, with the South West boasting more than any other region with seven.

Morocco and the US earned the most wins in the global category with four hotels each in the top 25, followed by Vietnam with three. The best of all was Marrakech’s Riad Kheirredine, a small boutique hotel with only seven rooms and a stunning roof terrace.

TripAdvisor spokesman James Kay said: “The fact that our UK award winners range from bargain hotels through to luxury five-star establishments shows that great service isn’t always predicated on price.”

The Independent travel offers: Discover a world of inspiring destinations

Arts and Entertainment
books
Voices
Nigel Farage arrives for a hustings event at The Oddfellows Hall in Ramsgate on Tuesday
voicesA defection that shows who has the most to fear from Ukip
Arts and Entertainment
The Doctor and the Dalek meet
tvReview: Doctor Who Into the Dalek more than compensated for last week's nonsensical offering
Sport
Diego Costa
footballEverton 3 Chelsea 6: Diego Costa double has manager purring
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
News
Dr Alice Roberts in front of a
peopleAlice Roberts talks about her new book on evolution - and why her early TV work drew flak from (mostly male) colleagues
Arts and Entertainment
The 'three chords and the truth gal' performing at the Cornbury Music Festival, Oxford, earlier this summer
music... so how did she become country music's hottest new star?
Life and Style
The spy mistress-general: A lecturer in nutritional therapy in her modern life, Heather Rosa favours a Byzantine look topped off with a squid and a schooner
fashionEurope's biggest steampunk convention heads to Lincoln
Voices
Caustic she may be, but Joan Rivers is a feminist hero, whether she likes it or not
voicesShe's an inspiration, whether she likes it or not, says Ellen E Jones
News
i100
Arts and Entertainment
Star turns: Montacute House
tv
Travel
ebookHow to enjoy the perfect short break in 20 great cities
News
i100Steve Carell selling chicken, Tina Fey selling saving accounts and Steve Colbert selling, um...
Arts and Entertainment
Unsettling perspective: Iraq gave Turner a subject and a voice (stock photo)
booksBrian Turner's new book goes back to the bloody battles he fought in Iraq
News
i100
Arts and Entertainment
Some of the key words and phrases to remember
booksA user's guide to weasel words
Life and Style
Brave step: A live collection from Alexander McQueen whose internet show crashed because of high demand
fashionAs the collections start, Alexander Fury finds video and the internet are proving more attractive
Independent Travel Videos
Independent Travel Videos
Simon Calder in Amsterdam
Independent Travel Videos
Simon Calder in Giverny
Independent Travel Videos
Simon Calder in St John's
Independent Travel Videos
Independent
Travel Shop
the manor
Up to 70% off luxury travel
on city breaks Find out more
santorini
Up to 70% off luxury travel
on chic beach resorts Find out more
sardina foodie
Up to 70% off luxury travel
on country retreats Find out more
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

ES Rentals

    iJobs Job Widget
    iJobs Travel

    Business Development Manager / Sales Pro

    £30 - 35k + Uncapped Comission (£70k Y1 OTE): Guru Careers: A Business Develop...

    Graduate Sales Executive / Junior Sales Exec

    £18k + Uncapped Commission (£60k Y1 OTE): Guru Careers: A Graduate Sales Exe...

    Web Developer / Software Developer

    £25 - 60k (DOE): Guru Careers: A Web Developer / Software Developer is needed ...

    Oracle 11g SQL 2008 DBA (Unix, Oracle RAC, Mirroring, Replicati

    £6000 - £50000 per annum + Bonus+Benefits+Package: Harrington Starr: Oracle 11...

    Day In a Page

    The other Mugabe who is lining up for the Zimbabwean presidency

    The other Mugabe who is lining up for the Zimbabwean presidency

    Wife of President Robert Mugabe appears to have her sights set on succeeding her husband
    The model of a gadget launch: Cultivate an atmosphere of mystery and excitement to sell stuff people didn't realise they needed

    The model for a gadget launch

    Cultivate an atmosphere of mystery and excitement to sell stuff people didn't realise they needed
    Alice Roberts: She's done pretty well, for a boffin without a beard

    She's done pretty well, for a boffin without a beard

    Alice Roberts talks about her new book on evolution - and why her early TV work drew flak from (mostly male) colleagues
    Get well soon, Joan Rivers - an inspiration, whether she likes it or not

    Get well soon, Joan Rivers

    She is awful. But she's also wonderful, not in spite of but because of the fact she's forever saying appalling things, argues Ellen E Jones
    Doctor Who Into the Dalek review: A classic sci-fi adventure with all the spectacle of a blockbuster

    A fresh take on an old foe

    Doctor Who Into the Dalek more than compensated for last week's nonsensical offering
    Fashion walks away from the celebrity runway show

    Fashion walks away from the celebrity runway show

    As the collections start, fashion editor Alexander Fury finds video and the internet are proving more attractive
    Meet the stars of TV's Wolf Hall... and it's not the cast of the Tudor trilogy

    Meet the stars of TV's Wolf Hall...

    ... and it's not the cast of the Tudor trilogy
    Weekend at the Asylum: Europe's biggest steampunk convention heads to Lincoln

    Europe's biggest steampunk convention

    Jake Wallis Simons discovers how Victorian ray guns and the martial art of biscuit dunking are precisely what the 21st century needs
    Don't swallow the tripe – a user's guide to weasel words

    Don't swallow the tripe – a user's guide to weasel words

    Lying is dangerous and unnecessary. A new book explains the strategies needed to avoid it. John Rentoul on the art of 'uncommunication'
    Daddy, who was Richard Attenborough? Was the beloved thespian the last of the cross-generation stars?

    Daddy, who was Richard Attenborough?

    The atomisation of culture means that few of those we regard as stars are universally loved any more, says DJ Taylor
    She's dark, sarcastic, and bashes life in Nowheresville ... so how did Kacey Musgraves become country music's hottest new star?

    Kacey Musgraves: Nashville's hottest new star

    The singer has two Grammys for her first album under her belt and her celebrity fans include Willie Nelson, Ryan Adams and Katy Perry
    American soldier-poet Brian Turner reveals the enduring turmoil that inspired his memoir

    Soldier-poet Brian Turner on his new memoir

    James Kidd meets the prize-winning writer, whose new memoir takes him back to the bloody battles he fought in Iraq
    Aston Villa vs Hull match preview: Villa were not surprised that Ron Vlaar was a World Cup star

    Villa were not surprised that Vlaar was a World Cup star

    Andi Weimann reveals just how good his Dutch teammate really is
    Bill Granger recipes: Our chef ekes out his holiday in Italy with divine, simple salads

    Bill Granger's simple Italian salads

    Our chef presents his own version of Italian dishes, taking in the flavours and produce that inspired him while he was in the country
    The Last Word: Tumbleweed through deserted stands and suites at Wembley

    The Last Word: Tumbleweed through deserted stands and suites at Wembley

    If supporters begin to close bank accounts, switch broadband suppliers or shun satellite sales, their voices will be heard. It’s time for revolution