The George at Nunney has received three awards of excellence from Visit England, the official tourist board for England.
Since the 2011 review of the Hotel Standards used by all the assessing bodies in the UK, including the AA and Visit England, a much tougher regime is being imposed.
If the quality is not up to standard in all the key areas, a lower star rating will be awarded. VisitEngland awards ratings for exactly the same criteria as other national assessment bodies such as the AA.
Not all hotels or bed & breakfast establishments are members of a Quality Scheme and it is the owner’s personal choice.
There are also different criteria for bed & breakfasts from the ones that apply to hotels. Therefore, 4 star guest accommodation cannot be compared to a 4 star hotel.
Consumers have higher expectations and facilities for hotels compared to guest accommodation. For example, even a 1 star hotel must have a liquor licence, have a clearly designated reception facility and all bedrooms must have either en-suite or private bathrooms.
In contrast, guest accommodation is assessed more by the quality provided than the number of services available – a specific reception area is not a requirement and it is only at 5 star level that all bedrooms are required to have an en-suite or private bathroom (50% at 4 star).
Quality and service levels are important in all schemes and higher levels of both are required at higher star ratings; at a 4 star hotel the service should be proactive and flexible and at 5 star consumers also expect high staffing levels including a concierge and doormen.
Gold and Silver Awards
Silver & Gold awards are presented to hotels and guest accommodation whose quality outperforms their star rating.
No matter what the star rating or designator, you can find accommodation which excels in hospitality and service and has top scores for bedrooms, bathrooms, food and cleanliness.
These special properties hold a VisitEngland Gold or Silver Award, which offer the ‘best of the best’, regardless of the range of facilities and services they offer.
There are 4,536 Gold Award properties and 1,189 with a Silver Award across England.
In summary, a high star rating means top quality in all areas and all the services expected of that classification of accommodation. A lower star rating with a Silver or Gold Award means limited services or facilities, but top quality.
The George at Nunney was also awarded a Breakfast Award. There are 1,556 hotels and guest accommodation establishments which hold the VisitEngland Breakfast Award.
This recognises breakfasts which exceed guest expectations at each star rating by rewarding excellent range, presentation, quality of ingredients and service.