More about Byron Hotel
What Air Conditioning??
My family and I recently stayed at the Byron Hotel for 9 nights on our first trip to London. We booked the room on the internet and were specifically looking for a hotel that offered air conditioning and included a continental breakfast.
Our triple room was cramped, but clean, and was located on the 5th floor. The air conditioning consisted of an antiquated vent which, on occasion, produced a few puffs of barely cool air. My travel alarm clock has a built in thermometer which consistently registered our tiny room's temperature at a sweltering 85 degrees!! As a result, we were forced to keep the two unscreened windows open day and night and take our chances with insects as well as with the noise from the youth hostel directly across the street.
The continental breakfast was also a huge disappointment. Dry toast and cereal were the daily fare. One morning, my husband ordered eggs and bacon (which were overcooked and raw, respectively) to the tune of 8 pounds, or approximately 16 US dollars!
My final complaint about the Byron was regarding the housekeeping service. We found that not only were our sheets never changed (my daughter's hidden socks proved that), but that our soiled bath towels, which we had left in a pile on the bathroom floor, were simply folded and re-hung on the rack!
Had this been an economical hotel, I would have been more likely to overlook some of these shortcomings for the sake of saving money. But, at over $200 per night, I felt hugely disappointed and as a result, would definitely NOT give them my business again.
A good-value stay
I read so many adverse comments in TripAdvisor that I once considered cancelling my booking at the Byron Hotel. (I was not aware of the comments when I booked the hotel through Princeline.) But the experience turned out to be much better than my expectation. I can say it's a good value booking - at less than GBP70 a night during the bank holidays at end August. When I arrived I told the reception that I would not take a room in the basement. The staff was very polite and replied that they had upgraded my booking to a twin room, so it's spacious enough for a single traveller like me. It's Room 15, "detached" somehow from others. Hence, it's exceptionally quiet! The air-conditioning functioned well, though I'm not sure whether it is adequate for mid summer. I had very good sleep during my 3-night stay there.
About breakfast, I knew beforehand that it's a continental one. But I could still find ham and cheese and conflake, on top of bread. Also some canned fruit, not fresh one - but you're not paying for a buffer breakfast, right? I rarely used the lift because I like walking. But I witnessed many people using the lift to come for breakfast. I can say it's at normal condition.
One thing I like most is the bathroom. It's newly renovated, clean and bright, with strong and heat shower.
It Was Bearable
The Byron Hotel is a cheap hotel in London, and that means you're going to be staying in the equivalent of a cheap hotel in any major city. In other words, don't translate the pounds into dollars; instead, think what kind of hotel you'd get for $70-$100 in New York City: that's what it is (well, maybe a little better). The rooms are very basic (my single was tiny, with room for a bed and a desk, with a TV attached to a fixed pole extending from the wall, and the bathroom had a shower, no tub), but if you're planning to be out sightseeing all day, that's fine. The staff are very friendly.
On the other hand, there are some big drawbacks: the breakfast is pretty poor. It's a basic continental breakfast -- toast, cereal, cold cuts, and fruit cocktail -- but the fruit cocktail is right out of a can, the cold cuts are clearly out of a package, and the toast is almost always BARELY toasted. In addition, they can be slapdash: I had to tell the desk twice that there was a (small) rip in my sheets before they'd fix it, and, although three friends who called had no trouble getting through several times, at one point a friend called and they told her I'd never checked in! Finally, while I can't speak for other rooms, mine was so small that I couldn't really get comfortable in it unless I was asleep. There was no real room to sit, and the TV/bed set-up made it awkward to sit on the bed and watch TV.
So my sum-up would be: if you're travelling on a strict budget , plan to be out most of the day and evening, and don't mind a genuinely budget hotel, the Byron is bearable. But if you can afford twenty or thirty pounds more a night, you should go for somewhere twenty or thirty pounds' worth of better.
Oh, and one more thing: while I was there, some Americans arrived who had made the mistake of thinking you could sleep three people in a double room. In England, a double room (or twin room) means two twin beds. If you want a triple, you need to ask for a triple. And DO NOT order the English breakfast. Eight pounds for eggs and bacon is a rip-off, and you can walk to many restaurants in the area and get a real English breakfast (eggs, bacon, sausage, toast, grilled tomato, and maybe baked beans) for less.
Breakfast A Joke
I had booked this hotel through a German hotel reservations site. I paid 70 GBP for a double including continental breakfast per room per night.
This rate is fairly OK given the location and the proximity to Bayswater shops and to Whiteley's shopping centre. However the breakfast was a total fluke: continental breakfast consisted of dry toast, cheese and ham along with cereal. An interesting fact was that other hotel guests who had booked English breakfast received scrambled eggs, bacon and sausages while we would have had to pay extra for this. A total joke and not acceptable at all!!! The breakfast staff was incompetent, unfriendly and did not attend to our needs.
The room was generally OK for UK standards. Carpets were a bit soggy and the beds too hard (but that's a matter of opinion).
The door lock to our room didn't work, we enquired about fixing but this had not been accomplished during our three night stay!!
Wouldn't stay there again!!! If it's just the location you're after, Queensborough Tce is FULL of hotels and if you just go there and enquire about a rate, you'll get a good deal plus be able to preview the room you'll have.
Should be "The BEWARE" Hotel!
Booked this hotel via internet and photos of Superior triple room looked too good to be true. My husband and a good friend checked into this hotel for our "Superior" room. We were given a key to a room on the basement level. The wallpaper was literally falling off the walls on this ground level floor. Our room consisted of 3 twin beds and each bed had nasty bedspreads (years old!) and each bed 'sunk in' in the middle and had pillows no thicker than pancakes! The crowning glory of this room??? The light was NOT on a nightstand, but on the FLOOR!!!! Oh, yes! The bathroom was no larger than a closet and the light fixture in there? A bulb with a string to pull to turn it on! We called to complain about this "Superior" room and were told they would change us. We ended up on the front desk floor in the very back. Our view? Graffti on a concrete wall. The bathroom was even SMALLER than the previous one. There was a double bed and a twin bed, each with faded, dirty bedspreads and the carpeting could have just as well been painted on the floor, it was so thin! We were tired and wanted to cry. We ended up across the street at the Central Park West Hotel, which was not much better, but at least the rooms were not as dreary. We just lost the one night's room fee. When we informed the front desk staff we would not be staying, they seemed not to care; didn't even bother to ask why. AVOID THIS DUMP AT ALL COSTS.
Better than I thought
after reading some other reviews about how small and cramped the rooms were I was a little worried, but was plesantly surprised. The rooms are smaller than American hotels but how much time are you going to be in it? We certainly had more than enough room to move around in. We had our own bath, and air conditioning, a nice flat screen tv, and most importantly, the room was clean, I mean spotless! The staff was helpful and was able to answer our questions. I would stay there again.
No way was this a 4 star hotel!
Personally I wouldn’t stay in this hotel again. Don't get me wrong, the price was good and the location was good... but the room was so small that I felt claustrophobic.
There is one lift (and it doesn’t seem over used because we never had to wait long for the lift)…
When we went into the room, there was the bed (which was small and narrow) and a small bedside table. There was a tv (attached to the wall as there wasn’t space for a table) which was very dated and could only get 2 channels and to get to the left side of the bed you had to duck when walking under the tv. The wardrobe was a good size and there was a dresser).
The bathroom was a real disappointment, the shower was large but there was no bath! The tap on the sink was loose (and I mean properly loose so that when you turned it, it felt as if it may come off in your hands). The other thing was my towel had a 10 inch rip in it – you wonder how this could go unnoticed when the room is made up for guests!
Breakfast was included (continental) – I actually thought it was a full English but it wasn’t. The reason I was confused was on the website the booking terms advise:
“The room rates shown are inclusive of English / Continental Breakfast, VAT and Service.”
I felt that meant traditional English or continental breakfast. The full English breakfast was an additional £8 each and I am glad we didn’t pay for it… it was just eggs and bacon.
The continental breakfast was ok but not great. It was processed cheese slices and processed ham, muesli, cornflakes, tinned peaches in syrup, tinned fruit cocktail in syrup –both remind me of the tins you can get from the budget range in supermarkets for about 6p!!! Also there nice tasting yoghurts and toast with butter and jams… (and fruit juice and coffee).
Now… a compliment of the breakfast, at least when the toast came out it was warm… and I was quite happy with jam on toast!
I have read other peoples reviews and some one said they had a flat screen tv and a nice bath – so there a variety of rooms and so I guess when you pay only £83 a night in London you can’t expect the best room! But when you are supposedly in a 4* hotel you expect it to be a lot better than it was!
beware the basement!
Went here with a work colleague- the idea being it was a good location for getting around Kensington, Notting Hill etc. My advice is this area is a bit run down and there are nicer hotels nearer to these locations. We expected a decent hotel for the four star rating- warning- it is definitely not a four star, especially not in the basement rooms. my single room was large, had twin beds, new furniture and a decent, clean, though small, bathroom. Unfortunately- it also had single glazed sash windows letting in noise from a street 3 feet away and a lift right next to the room which kept me awake all night. My colleague got the worst deal- her room was tiny, dark, looked onto a brick wall 2 feet away, bathroom tiling in need of repair, no air-conditioning and the finishing touch- the lift motor just through the wall next to her head- again- not a wink of sleep to be had. The corridors of the hotel are small and dated and the 'lounge' was not the least welcoming- very sparsely furnished and i didn't see anyone use it. The 'best' bit about the whole thing however, was breakfast- a frankly awful experience- I've had better at a 2 star in Hungary. Two cereals, tinned fruit cocktail, rolls,cheese and chopped pork-just not up to scratch- the breakfast room itself was in need of redecoration and a good clean and the foreign student staff were unhelpful and clueless it seemed. There was the option of paying £7:50 for a cooked breakfast but i fancied my chances better at the local Starbucks, which is exactly where we went.
Overall- expect a budget-type stay for above average type money and go out for breakfast.