Review: Wentworth Mansion, Charleston (SLH Hotel Using Hyatt Points)

I spent an April long weekend in Charleston. Hyatt has a partnership with SLH Hotels that allow you to redeem points and earn elite nights and points for stays, which made it possible for me to stay at Wentworth Mansion.

The property is category 7 and costs 30,000 Hyatt points per night. The base room at the Wentworth Mansion was selling for around $800 per night over my dates (including tax), netting me nearly 2.7 cents per point against the rate (though I wouldn’t have spent that much on a hotel night, so I can’t really say I got that much value from the points).

wentworth mansion

The Wentworth Mansion is charming. The service was impeccable. And it represented good value on points. I highly recommend it especially for Category 1-7 free night certificates, which I often am reluctant to use on Hyatt stays since they cannot be combined with confirmed suite upgrades, but at SLH hotels those certificates can’t be used anyway.

In terms of benefits,

  • The hotel has free breakfast for everyone, so the Hyatt benefit of complimentary breakfast doesn’t really apply.
  • Wifi is similary available to everyone, so the wifi perk isn’t additive.
  • Hyatt offers early checkin and late checkout if available, but we arrived around 7:30 p.m. and left just after 9 a.m. thanks to new non-stop Austin – Charleston flights on Southwest.

The hotel was well-located, in a residential neighborhood but easily walkable to the historic downtown as well as to a nearby lake area which had a playground that was perfect for my 3 year old daughter. The hotel offers complimentary parking. At turndown we received a note with the next day’s weather and a box of chocolate truffles each day.

I do tend to like much more modern properties, staying in a 19th century mansion – the second largest private home ever built in the area – made me feel a bit like The State‘s “Old Fashioned Guy.”

Mansion Room

The base room, booked on points, is the Deluxe King. However I emailed the hotel asking for either a rollaway bed or other bed setup for my toddler daughter, and they emailed back that they’d upgraded us to a Mansion Room from a base room – not a suite, but a larger room that they said would be perfect for setting up the bed.

They acknowledged ‘Hyatt membership’ which entitles guests to an upgrade if available – many third party booking programs for luxury hotels come with a space available upgrade, but they were kind enough to confirm this in advance.

The bedroom was one large room on the third floor, with very high ceilings.

wentworth mansion room

wentworth mansion room

wentworth mansion room

Room 17 was originally one of the family’s daughter’s rooms, and she carved her initials outside one of the windows.

The bathroom was large, albeit dated, with a shower featuring shower heads on both sides of the shower room, a single sink, a jacuzzi tub and separate toilet room.

The jacuzzi tub jets had dirt in them, which came out and stayed on the side of the tub after use when the water drained.

My only real complaints about the room were squeaky (and extra slippery) wood floors, and that not all of the windows had blackout shades

Complimentary Meals, Drinks, and Snacks at Wentworth Mansion

Wentworth Mansion offers several food and beverage offerings, complimentary for all guests.

  • Coffee and pastries, 6 a.m. – 11 a.m. in the parlor
  • Breakfast in the hotel’s restaurant, 7:30 a.m. – 10:30 a.m. (can be taken as room service for $15 tray charge)
  • Lemonade and tea in the parlor, 2:00 p.m. – 5:00 p.m.
  • Wine and appetizers on the sun porch, 5:00 p.m. – 6:00 p.m.
  • Complimentary water 24 hours in the cooler by the back entrance<
  • Port, sherry, and brandy was available 24 hours as well


Port, sherry, and brandy was out 24 hours

iced tea and lemonade

The appetizers were actually quite excellent. I only checked them out briefly, on the final night of my stay.

What struck me most about service at Wentworth Mansion was that twice in the afternoon I inquired about coffee, outside of coffee hours, and they provided it to me both times. In the first case they delivered it to my room complimentary. The second time they just offered it to me right away. Coffee is not expensive, the hotel’s room rates are high, why not make a guest want to return by taking care of their needs?

Wentworth Mansion Breakfast

The hotel’s restaurant is well-regarded. Room service is from the restaurant. But breakfast there is for hotel guests only.

My wife is a former restaurant chef. She used to cook at one of the very best restaurants in the DC area. The restaurant also offered brunch, and the reputation of dinner service created a halo effect for the brunch even though it was a completely different staff and level of quality offered in the morning.

That’s the case here as well. Breakfast was fine – cooked to order, and generally good quality – but nothing like the fine dining experience that the restaurant is known for at dinner.

Three things to know about the breakfast benefit for all guests at this hotel,

  1. Gratuity is explicitly not included
  2. Can be taken as room service for a $15 charge
  3. Only one entree per person. I’m not sure that’s enforced, but it’s not ‘all you can eat’. They do charge extra for some coffee drinks, for instance at the table next to me one morning there was a charge for a complicated espresso drink that would have made a Starbucks barista blush.

The restaurant is in a separate building behind the hotel. It’s immediately out the back and to the left.

wentworth mansion rear entrance
Back of Hotel

wentworth mansion restaurant circa 1889
Hotel Restaurant Entrance

Inside is the bar area and dining room.

Here’s the breakfast menu:

One morning I had the grits. I ordered a side of hash browns and also fruity and neither were an upcharge. (Another morning I had eggs via room service, and one morning we ate off property.)

The Property

When we approached Wentworth Mansion we almost missed the main entrance. That’s because it’s behind gates, and there are staircases up. At the bottom of a stairs is a button to push for luggage or disability assistance. We had several bags, traveling with my daughter, and I so called for help up the stairs with those. No one answered. I tried a second time, no one answered. I wanted up the stairs and into the hotel – no one was at the desk, but I was helped promptly including with bags.


3rd Floor Hallway

The hotel has four floors of guest rooms and there’s both a staircase and a single elevator which I never saw anyone using outside of moving their luggage. On display on the landing between the first and second floors is a chair that’s original to the mansion.

From the 4th floor you can take a walk up a narrow staircase to the hotel’s rooftop which features 360 degree views of the city, and a great sunset. It’s a special and private spot. Bring up a bottle of wine if you wish (but be careful coming down, if you drink it!).

The hotel’s sun room and parlor are both lovely comfortable spots to sit and gatther on the first floor.

Not In Perfect Shape

The mansion is well-maintained, but I’d remiss if I didn’t note frayed carpeting in spots, and well-worn wood floors. The old construction can be a bit creaky, and noise transmits between the guest rooms. I could hear people above us and beside us during our stay.

Notable Nearby Meals

We ate breakfast at the hotel on two of our three mornings. One morning though we walked to Millers All Day which was an excellent breakfast/brunch spot.

Their breakfast potatoes were amazing. The cinnamon roll just ok. But i really enjoyed the shrimp and grits (it was better than the hotel’s version in my opinion).

Also walkable, though a longer walk, was Poogan’s Smokehouse for dinner one night, which came well-recommended. I tried the ‘Four Porksmen’ sandwich, which looked impressive. It consisted of pulled pork, pork sausage, bacon, and a pork rib on top.

Honestly though the restaurant was a bit disappointing. Food came minutes after ordering, and we had to ask after our cocktails. The pulled pork was bland, as pulled pork generally is – it’s meat that requires sauce and isn’t tasty enough to eat on its own.

I’m fortunate to live in Central Texas, and need to adjust for the high quality barbecue that I’m used to when trying other regional varietals (that aren’t likely to measure up), much the same as a New Yorker might mistakenly order a bagel, pastrami, or pizza somewhere else.

About Gary Leff

Gary Leff is one of the foremost experts in the field of miles, points, and frequent business travel - a topic he has covered since 2002. Co-founder of frequent flyer community, emcee of the Freddie Awards, and named one of the "World's Top Travel Experts" by Conde' Nast Traveler (2010-Present) Gary has been a guest on most major news media, profiled in several top print publications, and published broadly on the topic of consumer loyalty. More About Gary »

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  1. It’s hard for people to understand how great central Texas bbq is. I’m always disappointed when I go to highly acclaimed places in other regions.

  2. Gary.

    A New Yorker would never order a bagel, pastrami, or pizza outside of the NY Metro area.

    Disclaimer for Chicago deep dish pizza.

  3. @dhammer53.. South Florida has some very respectable bagel outlets but other than that I agree. Also Texas BBQ >>>>>> than all other BBQ. Texas focuses on perfect meat and rubs instead of over saucing.

  4. Texas = Beef BBQ
    Carolinas = Whole Hog BBQ ( I prefer red sauce instead of the mustard or vinegar or white sauce further south )

  5. All I’m reading in this review is that i wouldn’t want to stay in this hotel… Room to room noise isn’t awesome

  6. My-home-smoked-bbq >>>> any other bbq 😉

    I will say that my pork doesn’t need sauce…

  7. I stayed at the Wentworth House last fall. At the time, they offered a ‘prix fix’ lower priced menu at their restaurant, Circa 1886. Do they still offer it?

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