Craig’s review… One of the downsides of staying in a 5-star hotel is that there’s too much pressure to be posh. You can’t just relax and have a walk around because you feel like you’re on trial. You have to press your shirt and straighten your tie and shine your shoes for breakfast, and I hate all of that nonsense. I don’t like people striking up a “how are you today, sir” conversation every time I get in the lift either. And that’s why I like this place – because it’s a bit more normal and homely and there’s no pressure to be posh. It’s a posh hotel for non-posh people.
Just to show you how screwed up the hotel rating system is in London… half of the websites online call this a 4-star hotel whereas the other half calls it a five.
And that’s because the room is quite small (it’s tiny), and it hasn’t got a bath but I don’t care. Everything else is nice. You get a big TV about the same size a table, a big bed that sinks deeper than a swimming pool, and a Nespresso coffee machine with a couple of capsules. You also get six tea bags and a hot chocolate, but only four milks. And some of the tea bags are of the watery oriental kind, like green tea and lemongrass. Are you supposed to put milk in those? And they’ve got one called ‘Jade Sword and Ginger’ that comes in a net instead of a tea bag. I think I’ll just stick with the Nespresso machine, because I know where I am with that.
You also get a minibar full of booze and mineral water. Let’s have a look at the prices: £2.50 for a fun-size can of Coke, £5 for a tiny bottle of red or white, £5 for a tiny bottle of vodka, whiskey or rum, £6 quid for a tub of peanuts and another £3.50 for Pringles. So… yeah. There you go. If you’ve got money to burn then it’s perfect.
The bathroom is nice enough. It’s got a toilet and a sink to brush my teeth – that’s all I need. And some soap. And a bottle of shampoo. And some scales. And some towels and a flannel and a few rolls of toilet paper. What else can I find in here… a shower cap and a vanity pack. Would you like to know what you get inside a vanity pack? Me too! Apparently vain people like to use eye patches, toothpicks, cotton buds and nail files.
Do you want to know how much I weigh? I may as well stand on the scales seeing as they’re here. This is not the usual kind of thing that you get in a hotel review, is it? But what the hell… eleven stone and a little bit. That’s not too bad is it? I’m quite proud of that – I might go and have that tub of Pringles in the minibar now.
Their ‘restaurant’ is really just a little breakfast room – it only has seven tables in it. But the breakfast is okay. You get all the usual kind of stuff: sausage and beans, scrambled eggs and hash browns, mushrooms, cheeses and hams. Plus some cereal and toast.
The best thing about this hotel is definitely its location. It’s halfway up Shaftesbury Avenue, about two minutes from Piccadilly Circus. So you can walk to Leicester Square in five mins, Trafalgar Square in ten mins, and Big Ben in fifteen.