When I stayed in London last...
When I stayed in London last time I was with a tour group and we stayed at the then Forte Crest Bloomsbury hotel. It has since changed names to the Posthouse Pemier Bloomsbury. It was a very nice 2-3 star hotel. There was close proximity to Covent Garden and the Tube and railways. There was also a supermarket across the street, which was handy when we didn't want to go out to eat anymore and to just be a total tourist and check out the prices on the goods in the stores. The people working at the hotel were very friendly,knowledgeable and helpful.
The average stay when I was there cost me about $69 a night. That included complimentary continental breakfast in the morning (which I often had to rush through if I was lucky --- because our tour group was going to leave early) --- but I don't see any mention of continental breakfast anymore. But one never knows. Not a particularly great area for viewing anything. I had a view of high-rises from my room. Not anything awe-inspiring. View was extremely limited, but then again, I didn't come to London for the view from my hotel room. I came to London to experience all the sights, sounds, smells and tastes of London. I tried looking for the pool and any workout facilities. I couldn't find any there before. From the information that I gathered on them on the web, it just looks like they offer 24 hour room service, laundry, valet and babysitting services and that's it.
The price was pretty good at $69 a night. There was complimentary continental breakfast then, but not sure if they have that now. They also have a restaurant (The Boulevard Restaurant and Carvery), but I never ate in there.
Big Bus Best Sightseeing
I love the Big Bus tours. The reasons:
1) When we got to London, there was a tube strike and not a taxi to be had. There we were - hot and sweaty and jet lagged with luggage and in no condition to walk from Victoria Station to our Bloomsbury hotel. So I bought a BB ticket and rode the bus around to the British Museum. I could walk to the hotel from there. It's true that it cost, but I'd have had to pay at least £8 for a taxi, and I was intending to get the BB anyway.
2) Since we both have bad knees, walking a lot isn't really an option. The BB whisked us around and gave us a good overview of the city and the history. Even though we've been there before, we learned something new about almost everywhere. Also found it interesting to talk to the guides in between times when they weren't busy. (I asked questions like - why don't the windows have screens in them)
3) It is much easier to take pictures from higher up, and there's no glass window to reflect like there is in the regular double deckers. (Not that I dislike those buses - it's just harder to take photographs)
They have ticket sellers and information people at the main stops and you can charge the tickets on a credit card.
You can hop on or off at any stop.
Buses run every 5-15 minutes.
Tickets are valid for 24 hours and include:
- FREE River Cruise
- Live guides or "Sights and Sounds" commentary, digitally-recorded in eight languages. I liked the guides better.
Good location - facilities disappointing
Starting with the positive - the location was very central. We stayed three nights and walked everywhere we went - the Globe Theatre, Covent Garden, Prince of Wales Theatre, Millennium Bridge, Westminster ...
Foyer and Reception areas were spacious. We didn't eat there so can't comment on the restaurant or breakfast facilities.
Our room was on the 7th floor so we took the lift. A couple of times we had to physically push the door the last couple of centimetres to get it to close so that the lift would move. We always arrived safely but it was a rather creaky journey.
The room itself was small but ok for our needs. One small window, looking out onto a dingy area between rooms. Other reviewers have commented on the lack of space for clothes - one rail with 4 hangers and a narrow shelf in the wardrobe. Again, for 3 nights it was ok - I would think it would be difficult if you were staying a week or more.
The room had a good sized flat-screen TV, a mini-bar style fridge which couldn't be used for storing your own bottled water etc. and tea and coffee making facilities. There was a selection of teabags (but only 2 of each variety, so once I had made a pot of tea on arrival I had used up all the "standard" teabags), coffee, 2 small cartons of UHT milk (again, used for the initial drink), 2 small cartons of UHT cream and a pack of Shortbread Fingers. I expect Housekeeping would have brought more if I had rung them, but initial supplies did seem a little sparse.
Our main problem was with the shower. The bathroom was smartly decorated with a good sized shower, hand basin and toilet. The shower was of the "wet room" style, with a central drain but no shower tray as such. "Wet room" was a very apt description, as whenever we used the shower, the entire bathroom floor got very wet indeed. After the first time, we had to paddle through about 2cm of water to get to the bathroom door or to get to the loo! We spent some time mopping this up with towels and the next time we used the shower, took the precaution of rolling up the bath mat and wedging it at the foot of the fixed glass partition. This reduced the quantity of excess water sloshing around the room, although we still needed to mop up. Eventually we decided just to have showers in the morning, turning the water off as quickly as possible and hope that Room Service could deal with the aftermath. The water did eventually drain away but it was a very slow process.
As we didn't pay the full price for our room, I presume we were given one of the poorer rooms in the hotel and I felt the facilities were adequate. Had I paid the full rate or been staying longer, I would have complained about the shower and asked to move.
I would consider staying there again, but it wouldn't be my first choice.
We have just returned from an overnight stay at the Bloomsbury. We found an offer on line which gave us a late checkout (2pm) and breakfast included for a very good price. We found the hotel very easy to get to and just a few minutes walk from the British Museum. The rooms weren't quite ready but the staff were very friendly and took our bags while we wandered off for a bit of sightseeing. We returned 45 mins later and were given the key to our room and told our bags would follow. After an initla hiccup getting to the room we walked in and were very impressed. The room was a standard double room and was small but beuatifully decorated. Very clean with all the facilities needed. There was a nice big flatscreen TV - with speakers in the bathroom so you need not miss anything! The bed was one of the comfiest hotel beds I've ever stayed in and the shower was lovely to.
We had booked a set 3 course dinner as we had tickets for the Albert Hall so wanted to eat first. The meal was excellent and the service from the staff was also excellent. We didn't feel rushed at all and they were constantly around to see to our every need. The morning breakfast was also very good with a continetal style buffet option as well as a full English ordered from the kitchen. The presentation and choice was great.
Checkout was easy and very quick. All in all an excellent stay and worth every penny. I would definately recommend this hotel to anyone want to sight see around London. It is central but also quiet.
Did not disappoint
It is very difficult to choose a hotel without prior recommendation. I am so glad that we chose this hotel. I found the room and decor most pleasing. The service in the bar and restaurant was excellent, the staff were so welcoming and attentive. From the moment we arrived to book in the delight of the refreshing flannel in reception the room and the meal in the restuarant, it made our stay in London very enjoyable. The Lazy stay deal is so worth while I recommend it to all. Thank you, we will certainly return and recommend this hotel to others.
Oh dear - Something just missing from this hotel
Stayed there for 2 nights. It isn't the same as Jury's used to be. Yes the hotel is pretty and well located and the new room decor is good but there is just something wrong with the service here.
1. On check in I had to ask about the £25 credit for food and drink that I received with the package I bought - that should have been pointed out to me I felt
2 No TV remote control in the room - this should have been checked as part of the room servicing. In fairness they sent one up within 15 mins
3, The safe didn't work - that couldn't be corrected until the next morning
4. The handle of the door was broken and came off in my hand - much panic as I tried to get the handle back on again so I could get the door opened. I reported this but it wasn't fixed over the weekend and we had to be careful it didn't come off again.
5. Breakfast was average for this sort of hotel. On the second morning we came down late (but before breakfast ended) and were not offered a cooked breakfast - neithe rof us was particulalry hungry so we didn't push it but it seems strange that the staff may have been trying to avoid any more cooking.
6. On check out, we were charged for room service food. Fair enough but the famous £25 food credit was not deducted from the bill - again I had to ask for the credit to be applied. There was no apology for this attempt to overcharge.
All in all this hotel has a great location and nice decor but it is missing a service quality that you would expect for the price. Staff are polite and friendly but are just not with it in terms of service focus.
Disappointing as I liked to stay in these hotels under their own names. I think I will look at the more consistent brands like Marriott in the future.
Great hotel. Clean, modern, spacious with great service.
Worth getting the breakfast included price.
Convenient to Tube - 2 mins walk
Overall excellent - would recomend and would certainly stay again
"Pub grins, theater, art and style...cheers!"
I spent one week in London and during that time I felt so at home in this foreign city that it really made me appreciative of the hospitality of the English as well as their penchant for ingenious city planning.
I have been to NYC over 100 times and I still can't manage the subway sytem there, but London's underground is genius and so easy to navigate..what a pleasure.
"Lodging in Literary London: Bloomsbury"
Hotel Cavendish: a true value. Sleep where the masters once slept and enjoy very good company.
"Dining out, don't visit while on a diet"
Traditional English food is delicious. It is heavy though, so if youre in search of a salad or a lite snack, dont try the pubs. Maybe order the Ploughman's platter...but work up an appetite before you dine because servings are plentiful and tasty...Most places dont serve food between 3 and 5 pm.
Where can I do laundry?
Sorry for the boring question coming up. Later this month I will be spending nearly a week in a Bloomsbury Hotel located on Southampton Row. I've explored this neighborhood several times before but have never run accross any self laundry facilities (called laundramats in the States). My hotel charges an arm and a leg to launder each item of clothing - I'm speaking of t-shirts, socks, underwear, . . . I prefer to pack a medium-sized bag and not have to pack a full set of clothing for each day. Does anyone know of such facilities in this area? Thanks (and Yes! to Democrats!)
RE: Where can I do laundry?
I checked yellow pages for you. Here are somme laundrettes (that's what we calle them, lol!) in the WC1 area:
Red & White Laundries Ltd
78, Marchmont St, London, WC1N 1AG
Tel: 020 7387 3667
23, Boswell St, London, WC1N 3BW
Tel: 020 7404 1248
114, Cromer St, London, WC1H 8BS
Tel: 020 7837 9245
RE: Where can I do laundry?
It must be the one on Marchmont St that I was thinking of opposite the Lord John Russell pub a lot of people from the Generator round the corner were using it. Isn't it funny how it is easier to remember the name of the pub rather than the launderette, The Goose further down the road is cheaper for a pint if you want to fill your time while waiting for your clobber to be cleaned.
RE: RE: Where can I do laundry?
Missthing, thank you so much for providing the list of laundrettes and addresses! I will definitely get my map out and figure out where they are in relation to my hotel. And thanks to the other replies as well. I'm always looking for some good pub suggestions. One of my favorite ways to relax in London is to find a cozy seat in a pub and read a newspaper while sipping on a pint.
RE: RE: Where can I do laundry?
When I used to live near Russell Square there used to be a laundrette in the shopping centre to the right (then cross the road) of Russell Square tube station...check it out!
RE: RE: Where can I do laundry?
36, last time I was in that area they were renovating/knocking down the shopping centre. It did seem a bit odd that place anyway with a supermarket and a flowershop tucked out of sight.
RE: RE: Where can I do laundry?
Thanks for the update!