“ Address: 73 Chiswick High Road / London / England „
Finding a reasonably priced hotel in London that isn't a dump is like trying to find a needle in a haystack. However, once in a while you'll get stabbed and find you've been stuck with something very pleasant indeed. That's my overall impression of the Best Western Chiswick Palace & Suites Hotel. In fact, the first thing you'll notice when you leave the Turnham Green tube station is that you're in a lovely neighborhood with nice shops, pubs and restaurants all along the way. Thankfully, the hotel itself lives up to this introduction, as well.
Because I landed and left from Heathrow on this trip, I found this hotel to be the perfect location between the airport and the city. The only catch is that the stations that serve this hotel are on the District Line, which has atrocious service, especially on the weekends. Turnham Green tube station is also on the Piccadilly Line, but only certain hours in the evenings. On the other hand, there are plenty of busses that will take you both to town and to underground stations that have better service. So as far as location is concerned, it isn't bad at all - just not optimal.
The room I had was decidedly single, but only because it had a single bed. Other than that, the room was a good size and well equipped. It has plenty of cupboard space, a desk you can actually sit at, a nice reading lamp by the bed (ultimately needed when traveling alone) and even enough room for a comfortable chair. While the television was small, it worked fine and had the usual choice of channels. The room design was relaxing with cream-coloured wallpaper and a dark green carpet, but nothing loud or overly patterned. It has coffee/tea facilities that even came with a hospitality tray. Although there was no refrigerator in the room, there is one downstairs in a communal kitchen that let me store both fresh, cold milk for my coffee as well as drinking water for my trips - a huge plus, especially in the summer. Since the weather was comfortable, I didn't need the heat or air conditioning, but it is there.
For the purpose of this review, I asked to peek into a couple of the larger rooms. These come in two types - rooms and apartments. The regular rooms also seem to have plenty of room to move around in and seem tastefully decorated as well. The apartments (two or three bedrooms) are really, Really spacious and might almost be considered luxurious, especially for the money.
The hotel is located off a road that is just off the high street. It consists of a number of houses that have been somehow consolidated into one facility, but each has its own separate entrance. There's a main house with the reception and breakfast room, which also has some accommodations, but most of the rest of the rooms are approached via a garden (which was very nicely tended). This might be a problem in the rain or cold, especially if you're not the hardy type, but in general, it gives an old-world feel to the place. To get to my room, I had to cross the garden to one of the houses adjacent to the main one. I should note that there are no elevators in any of the buildings, so unless you get a ground floor room, you'll have to negotiate stairs (which the disabled or those with wonky knees might not appreciate).
The staff members were mostly very nice, except for this one person the first evening I arrived, who was working the evening/night shift. He was a bit strange, but after that they all seemed really attentive, pleasant and efficient. In particular the Italian young woman who took me to see the other rooms!
You should know that the lobby also doubles as the breakfast area, and while that may not seem terribly convenient, it is spacious enough to make it feel comfortable, and there's a conservatory just outside which is lovely to sit in. Moreover, there's a good coffee machine in this breakfast/lobby area that is available 24/7 for free - in case you don't want what's in the room.
I took this bed & breakfast board, and while many previous reviewers on various sites have complained about the meat and special order omelets costing extra. I found that what was available without paying extra to be more than sufficient. Perhaps that's because I prefer vegetarian breakfasts, anyway. In any case, the cooked choice was tomatoes, baked beans, scrambled egg and mushrooms. Cold items include the usual cereals, yoghurts, good choice of bread and rolls, different jams and even marmite (for those inclined). Their juices are fine - with a choice of orange, apple and tomato. Unfortunately, there was no fresh fruit, only canned stuff. Still, in general, you can get enough free stuff for a hearty breakfast, but if that isn't enough, you can pay for the extra, if you want. This is all buffet style and the staff was on hand for extra requests and clearing up, which was done quickly enough.
As for the cost, the single was £69 per night, with the doubles starting from £85 per night. While that's not the cheapest hotel around, considering how convenient it is for both Heathrow and going into town - especially to the West End - this is certainly very reasonable. Moreover, the rooms are so spacious and comfortable that I certainly felt that I was getting my money's worth. So there you have it, a very nice hotel in London at a reasonable price - that's the needle in the haystack I've been looking for. I'll give it four stars out of five and highly recommend it.
Davida Chazan © August, 2009
More information about this hotel can be found at their website which can be found at http://www.bestwesternchiswickpalace.co.uk/
There you'll find they have not only single, double and twin rooms, but also two bedroom and three bedroom apartments that accommodate larger groups and families. You might also find better rates there for minimum 30 day advanced booking than what I found.