Britannia Hotels has been named the worst UK hotel chain for the sixth consecutive year.
The firm’s hotels were described as “old”, “shabby” and “outdated” by guests who responded to a survey for magazine Which? Travel.
The chain scored one star out of five in six of the nine categories researched, including cleanliness, value for money and facilities.
One of its venues, the Royal Albion Hotel on Brighton seafront, was found to be “rundown” and “depressingly shabby and neglected” when it was visited by a Which? investigator.
The hotel’s website promises “character and style”, but the reality involves crayon on bedroom walls, stained carpets and grubby towels, according to the report.
Nearly one in four (23%) of the 105 Britannia guests who responded to the poll said they had made an official complaint about their stay, compared with an average of fewer than one in 10.
A total of 7,812 people surveyed by Which? Travel found that Premier Inn was number one out of 32 large chains, with a satisfaction score of 79%.
It was given top scores for cleanliness, the comfort of its beds and customer service.
Pub chains performed better than ever in this year’s survey, with Fuller’s (75%) and Wetherspoon (71%) scoring well above average.
Which? Travel editor Rory Boland said: “Britannia has superb locations, fabulous buildings – but terrible hotels.
“Guests looking for a safe bet, with no nasty surprises, should opt for a no-nonsense option like Premier Inn.
“Anyone looking for a cheap and cheerful hotel could do worse than booking a stay at a Wetherspoon – complete with an added bonus of only a staircase separating you and your bed after a slap-up meal and a glass or two of wine.”
– Here are the top five large hotel chains according to Which? Travel (customer score in brackets): 1. Premier Inn (79%) 2. Hilton: Garden Inn (77%) 3. Fuller’s (75%) 4. Marriott: Renaissance Hotel (73%) 5=. Crowne Plaza (72%) 5=. Hilton: Double Tree (72%) 5=. Hilton: Hampton (72%)
– Here are the worst five large hotel chains according to Which? Travel (customer score in brackets): 1. Britannia (35%) 2. Old English Inn (57%) 3. Radisson: Park Inn (60%) 4=. Thistle (61%) 4=. EasyHotel (61%)