Do you have a favorite apartment rental or hotel in London? Places you'd go back to when you can travel again? Share your top spots -- or perhaps a memorable moment -- and help us all dream of travels to come.
Simple: Aster House.
Close to South Kensington Tube and the V&A.
Love the ducks in the backyard. Pricy for many during the high season but substantial discounts in the late fall to early spring. And they have the best ice machine (with Tall glasses available) in London!
Perhaps not the "best" that London has to offer, but a great bang for the buck and convenient location walking distance to 3 stations: Premier Inn St Pancras. Excellent comfortable beds and quiet rooms despite being on a busy street. And at a reasonable price for us.
Yes, I’ll suggest two very similar chains.
Hub hotel by Premier Inn. The St Martin’s Lane location is the most central but they’ll all work as London attractions are spread out.
Z Hotel. The Soho location is the most central, but again all will work.
They’re both designed for either a solo traveler or a very close couple. Rooms are small but amazingly efficient and a great bargain in expensive London.
I love the Premier Inn chain, just haven’t stayed at any of their locations in London. I’d certainly do so in a heartbeat.
We have liked the Luna and Simone Hotel and have stayed there a few times. Nice location between Victoria Station and Pimlico tube stop, many restaurants and shops nearby, comfortable and quiet rooms and reasonably priced, including a discount for RS. A decent but not lavish breakfast is included.
I don’t recall how much we paid. What I do remember is the folks smiling at me when we checked in or asked a question, and all the times they helped us or chatted with us or were just plain old friendly and caring. I’m a sucker for nice people, and I’ll return for as many trips to London as we may be able to take. Safe travels,
Definitely not the "best," and not to a lot of people's taste, but we love the Kensington Gardens, in Bayswater. It's on a very quiet street just about a block and a half off busy Queensway. The hotel faces a park, and the neighborhood is peaceful. It's in walking distance of Hyde Park, Portobello Market, and a number of museums, including the V & A and the Science Museum.
Lots of shops and restaurants nearby as well.
And it's very inexpensive; it runs about ₤100 per night for a double, with a good breakfast (at their sister hotel just a few doors down the road.) There are only 17 rooms, all perched around a central stairway.
Ummm, did I mention there are 4 or 5 floors, and no elevator? Our first stay there we had the room at the very top, facing the park. The room was big and airy, and we loved it. We've been back twice since then, but haven't snagged that room again.
- Lime Tree, near Victoria Station. In a row house, cute, small but good rooms, nice breakfast, great location. Best for 1-2 people.
- Premier Inn County Hall. Great for a family; location can't be beat for tourist stuff (the Eye is literally outside the door). Relatively inexpensive, decent-size rooms for families.
I am also a fan of Premier Inn County Hall. The staff was always cheerful and helpful, the rooms were basic and it had excellent bedding and linens. It had the best WiFi and the price was very reasonable. We felt the location was perfect for accessing other parts of the city and transit options. We’ve stayed at. The London Bridge Hotel, Nell Gwynn House, The Royal Park Hotel and Hilton’s Paddington and Metropole.
A second vote for Aster House. I have been to London many time for work and pleasure and South Kensington is my favorite place to stay and Aster House is a delight. Leoni, the owner, goes out of her way to make your trip special. She is also there to help if you have an unfortunate circumstance like my last visit when I became ill.
The B&B is on a quiet street only 4 minutes from the South Kensington tube stop which has the PIcadilly and District/Circle lines, getting me to most places for tourist and an easy tube ride to Heathrow. Because it is a neighborhood, I feel like a temporary resident and it is great to go to a local neighborhood restaurant after a busy day of siteseeing. The other thing I love is if you go in Spring or Summer, Aster House has a lovely garden to relax in the afternoon or evening. There breakfast is lovely to with fresh eggs and toast to complement pastries and fruit.
I am looking forward to my next trip back to London and Aster House.
Jane, this is so funny. I “discovered” Kensington Gardens thanks to the Forum — I wonder if it was from a post of yours?!
I agree, a good value for the price, and I have always found the manager and all the people who work there so friendly. I haven’t ever taken advantage of the breakfast at the Phoenix down the street though.
I like the Lime Tree as a hotel, but I really don’t like staying down by Victoria. They have just spent the past few months refurbishing, so it’s sure to be even more charming now. I do love the street it is on and being close to Pimlico etc.
I like staying at the Hub on St Martins Lane or the Premier Inn at Holborn — Red Fox Street I think it is. It is nearish St Pancras for my Eurostar needs without being right there. And I liked staying as I did last year at the Hub on Brick Lane, it was fun to be out in that part of town.
I don’t have any secret hidden gem but several different favorites. My husband and I got to stay a night at the Savoy two or three years ago in mid-December — nowthat was heavenly, but he is not working for the same parent company any more, so we’ll never have that pleasure again at 120£ or whatever ridiculous price we paid!!!
Was that £120 for the room or just for breakfast at the Savoy?
Kim, we found the Kensington Gardens in one of Rick's books, probably when we did the Best of London tour in (I think) 2014. I kept coming back to the description - of all the hotels he listed, that was the one that called me.
And next time you're there, do try the breakfast at the Phoenix. It's excellent. Lots of cold cuts, breads, cheeses, boiled eggs, cereals, fruit, yogurt, and plenty of coffee and tea.
I think a hot breakfast is available too, if you ask for it. We love the buffet.
I am also a fan of The Lime Tree, a wonderful place I've been going to for years. It has recently been renovated and I'm not sure when they plan to reopen. The staff is awesome (and so is the breakfast!). When I don't stay there, I stay at the Union Jack Hotel on the South Bank, about two blocks from Waterloo Station. It's a great location and I love staying there.
For business meetings, not paying for them ourselves, we stayed at both the Dorchester and Grosvenor hotels overlooking Hyde Park. I certainly would rank them among London’s best hotels in every category, service, rooms, food, decor and views.
Beth and Andi, Thanks for confirming that I was correct to bookmark the Limetree to stay at when I someday go back to London.
I'm looking for something that's no more than $150/night tops. Anything near Hyde Park or Piccadilly Circus?
Depending on your travel dates and on how far in advance you book, you might be able to get a room at a Premier Inn for that price. That link will take you to a list showing prices for a randomly-selected two-night stay in August. Unfortunately, the map view isn't currently working for me. (Premier Inn runs well-managed, well-priced hotels, but its website is pretty poor.)
I don't know London well enough to suggest many specific hotels for you, but I will note that Hyde Park is huge, so it would be helpful if you could tell us which side you prefer to be on.
Piccadilly Circus is a rather crowded, busy area. It wouldn't be my choice, but I can see that the location would be convenient for a visitor whose main focus is attending the theatre and visiting the National Gallery and National Portrait Gallery. The Premier Inn Leicester Square is reasonably close to Piccadilly Circus, but I'm not familiar with its exact location.
I'm sure others will be able to suggest options that have more character than the business-oriented Premier Inn chain, but keep in mind that most PI properties are air conditioned, a feature not easy to find in inexpensive London lodgings. Of course, if yours is not a summer trip, that will not be a concern.