Sometimes, in between housesits, we need to find paid accommodation to fill the gaps. We found ourselves with a two night gap before our housesit in Buckinghamshire, and decided to treat ourselves to a real English pub/inn experience. We decided to go with The Chequers Inn which was only 15 minutes from our housesit starting early in the morning.
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We booked ourselves the Junior Suite, which has a sitting area, an extra large double bed, and, quite important to us, a fridge. We travel with some food from housesit to housesit, so a fridge means things won’t spoil! The Junior Suite has a list price of £190, so this was a bit of a splurge for us!
The check in process
Finding the Chequers Inn was very easy. We really like the Booking.com feature to open the directions in your maps app. The inn is also a pub, well known for its restaurant. When we arrived late afternoon on a beautiful Thursday afternoon, there were quite a few people enjoying a drink outside in the sun.
It was not immediately obvious where we should check in. We parked and walked into what looked like the inn portion of the premises. There we saw a sign with directions to the hotel check-in at the other side of the parking lot. The check in woman was lovely. Although we had paid in advance, they did ask for our credit card for ‘incidentals’. But at this point, that’s probably normal even at little inns.
Our room at the Chequers Inn was not in the same building as the pub itself. We were across the parking lot in a newer building that had extra rooms. We were not on the ground floor, and there was no lift to transport our bags up the stairs. But the stairs were wide and easily managed.
Our first impression of the room was that it was LOOOOOONG. There were two windows that seemed very small in proportion to the room itself. On the far end of the bed was the extra large double bed. The room has a two seater sofa, in front of what looked like a 40″ TV on a sideboard. There is also a very small desk, in front of a mirror. Nearer the door was a small two seat table. Then there was a rather large, dimly lit bathroom at the opposite end from the bed in the very long room.
There were so many disappointments in the room.
One of my pet peeves at hotels is the silly sign in to Wi-Fi systems that they have. The pop up screen requiring you to log in to an unsecured network is something we really don’t appreciate any more.
It also really messes with our system of traveling with our Apple TV as a plug and play. Thanks to the Jolly Hobos for letting me know they travel with a USB-C to HDMI adapter, like this one,
so that won’t be a problem in the future. Just plug and play your phone instead! I’m really hoping this will reduce our frustration with hotel Wi-Fi in the future.
This giant junior suite had a 40″ television. It’s positioning was incredibly frustrating. It was really only possible to watch the TV from the two seater sofa. We used my suitcase as a footrest, as there was no coffee table in front of it.
Most other hotels, inns, etc that we have ever stayed in at lest had Smart TVs that have apps for streaming available. This TV, however, was not already connected to the internet, so we were not able to use any streaming apps at all, even though it was a smart TV. There was a Freeview satellite connected, so we could watch live tv. But in 2023, that’s not really luxury anymore is it?
Once again, the Wi-Fi system made it impossible to watch anything else on the TV. We could not connect the TV to the internet, of course.
I mentioned the tiny desk in the ‘suite’. There was a mirror over the desk, which I appreciated, but there was absolutely no work light or anything like that to make the space practical in any way. It was a tiny desk that already had a menu, a notepad, a big telephone, a tissue box, and a display frame on it, so there really wasn’t room for much else.
Then there was the fridge. It was very small, even by minibar standards. There was not room for anything in there. And there was not, perhaps not shockingly, any ice whatsoever. This is a normal thing in England, but for the price, I guess we optimistically thought there might be some ice. The pub staff were very nice when we walked across the parking lot to go get some from over there.
These were some of the disappointments we had with the room itself. But there were some good things
On what was a very warm day in this part of England, we were THRILLED to find an Air Conditioner in the room! It can be hard to get a good night’s sleep in England on hot days. But here, we were nice and cool and comfortable. And since the A/C unit was situated right at the foot of the bed, it worked quite well!
The bed itself was actually very comfortable, with really nice bedding. We slept very comfortably.
The bathroom looks very pretty and upscale at first glance. It’s when you start looking at actual practicality that things fall apart.
The lighting in the bathroom was very dim. There were a couple of downlight and a mirror light in a dark grey bathroom. There was no way I was going to risk shaving my legs in the dim lighting. Applying makeup was not easy either. I had to reach a long way over the sink to see the mirror to apply mascara, for example.
The shower was a rainfall shower. There was very little pressure in it. On the plus side, the taps were far away from the shower head so you could wait for the correct temperature without having to stand under too hot or too cold water.
There is a huge, inviting looking tub in the bathroom. I seriously considered a bath instead of the shower, since the shower was quite dribbly. But there was no handheld shower head, so washing my hair in there would have been a little tricky.
One of my least favorite things about the bathroom was the toilet position. It points STRAIGHT into the rest of the room. No one wants the door to swing open at the wrong moment. This was especially annoying since the photo on the listing at Booking.com was not the same layout at all.
Our Stay at Chequers Inn
During our two days at the Chequers Inn, the fire alarm went off once. We both take things like this seriously, so we grabbed our passports and headed out to the assembly point.
The hotel staff were very blasé about the fire alarm. We were pretty much told not to worry about it because an old man had pulled the fire alarm. There was no one from staff that came to tell us that it was alright to return to our rooms. No one seemed to take the alarm seriously at all.
Overall, the Chequers Inn tried, but did not succeed in giving us value for money with their junior suite. They charge a lot for a junior suite that doesn’t actually have any extra benefits. We would not book this room again.
If you are not arranging your accommodation through TrustedHousesitters, we recommend checking Booking.com for great rates on a range of accommodation options.
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