Over the last few years I have basically lived out of a suitcase, so have been in all sorts of manky, cramped and haunted hotels. When I was told I had to go down to London I wasn't too pleased - it is unfriendly and I can't wear my beloved stillettos because the paths are so uneven.
Unhappily I trotted off (in my flat shoes) to Kings Cross, onto the Victoria line and made the short walk from Pimlico station to Dolphin Square hotel.
As I entered through the glass doors to check in I was dealt with immediately. My work had booked me in so I can't really comment on that process, but check in was quick, easy and with one swipe of my credit card I was given swipe card to my room. I was offered a hand with my bags (I was there for 2 weeks so had a few) and taken to my room by the lift opposite the reception desk.
To say room is a slight under-exageration it is an apartment. I went into the room's entrance hall and to the left was my living room and kitchen in front was my bathroom and to the right was the bedroom. When the building was originally designed in the 30's it was built as a hotel but now it has been split into live in apartments and hotel rooms. Basically the apartments you stay in at the hotel side are the same as the apartments people live in.
In the living room was 2 large sofas a massive widescreen tv and a fully equiped kitchen.
The bathroom was big enough for at least 4 people and came with a massive bath and shower and 2 sinks.
As for the bedroom there was another massive tv and a king size bed.
The staff are warm and friendly and every day my room was spotless when I got back in. If I decided to cook instead of going out all my dishes were done too. The reception desk were only too pleased to order taxis, book tables at restaurants and basically everything else I needed.
On site there is a swimming pool, gym, shop, restaurant, gym, hair salon, laundry and parking. The hotel is actual built in a square around a large garden. The area is protected at night by a security guard as one half of the bulding is the hotel and the other half is rented apartments. In the local area are many shops, supermarkets and bars
The hotel is right next to the Thames. The only disadvantage is that on one side is a school so it can be quite noisy in the morning. Within a 10 minute walk is the Tate Gallery and the Houses of Parliament. The hotel is close to Victoria bridge and has a great view of the Tate Modern and London Eye.
The hotel is quite expensive - around £150 per night
There is a car park available at the hotel but it is quite expensive (£12 a night). You also need to get a sticker from reception to put in your window - which means parking, dragging your stuff in, checking in then going back to the car to put your sticker in the cr window.
Considering I was not looking forward to London at all this hotel turned out to be a pleasant suprise. Completely unpretensious, and the staff could not do enough to help.
After a stressful day at work I enjoyed going for a swim ordering some room service and slobbing out on the sofa in front of the tv (with some sky channels.)
The room service was standard stuff and was pretty over priced but it was nice enough.
The restaurant was nice enough, but there are quite a few good pubs in the area that serve nice food.
In the local area are many gorgeous Edwardian white buildings, which are worth looking at. The tube station is only a short walk away and is a reasonable price to get anywhere in London.
I did enjoy my stay at this hotel, it was a calming haven in a city of chaos.
Address - Dolphin Square
Tel: 020 7834 3800
Dolphin Square Hotel I stayed at the Dolphin Square Hotel for 2 nights (with a friend) in August 2003. We booked via lastminute.com a few days prior to our arrival at a nightly rate of £70 / $105 for a studio suite (although we were upgraded upon arrival to a one-bedroom suite). The hotel is located in Pimlico, London, in a plush and quiet residential area. Although not right in the centre of London, the hotel is less than a 5-minute walk to Pimlico Underground Station and around the corner from the local bus stop (Serving very frequent bus route: 24 - travelling through Trafalgar Square and Oxford Street). The hotel staff (from receptionists to housekeeping) were very polite and welcoming. Checking in was a breeze (as was checking out) and although we had very little luggage we were still presented with the services of a concierge. The reception area was very modern, clean and presentable. Although I didn't use the following services, the hotel restaurant (open for breakfast, lunch, dinner and snacks), The Chipper Bar, Pool and Business Services were all located on this floor. The reception area also leads into the hotel Shopping Arcade, which was immensely convenient. It contained numerous shops, including a Pharmacy, Newsagent and Off License, all accessible without having to leave the hotel. The hotel was spectacularly clean throughout, including corridors and stairwells. The hotel features 2 lifts (which we never shared during our stay) and we were located on the 5th floor (out of 6 floors) with a north facing view (London Eye, Big Ben, Houses of Parliament and BT tower all visible). What can I say about the suite? It was big! It was magnificent! It is by far the best hotel room I have stayed in. There wasn't a speck of dust anywhere. It was like having your own luxury apartment! The front door opened into a well-lit hallway with 2 doors either side. One room comprised of the sit
ting room and fully-equipped kitchen and the other comprised of the bedroom and very brightly-lit en-suite bathroom. It was like walking into a Barrat-homes showroom, the décor throughout was in calming pastel colours; the furniture was very modern and seemed brand new. Sitting room - Large sofa; matching arm chair; desk; telephone; coffee table; satellite tv; table with chairs; numerous lamps. Kitchen - microwave oven; matching cutlery/crockery; hob; fridge; electric kettle; sink; washing up liquid; complimentary milk; coffee; tea bags? everything you needed was there! Bedroom - Large bed, bedside tables, desk, wardrobe, satellite tv, telephone, numerous lamps. Bathroom - Tiled and mirrored; bath with shower; toilet, sink; shaving mirror; complimentary toiletries. The suite also featured an ironing board with iron, ample amount of hangers in the wardrobe, room service, writing equipment, vase, fan and extra pillows. The only negative comment I would have on this hotel (and this is clutching at straws) is that the windows in the suite can be a little tricky to move. The little touches is what I think makes this hotel shine, such as a complimentary The Times newspaper delivered to you, a vase (which was needed), room keys for each occupant, a fan (hugely thankful for due to the very hot weather).
Well, I had booked my hotel stay before reading the articles on this hotel. So I knew a little to expect from the latest opinion. When I eventually found the place as we arrived via the tube station a passer-by gave is the directions but forgot to mention that halfway down the round turn right, so obviously we walked around the block then some, at least the River Thames was a sight to see.... The hotel was newish looking rather a pleasant sight. Our booking in was a rather shambles due to misinformation and one member of staff being rather rude and obviously I had to put a few chosen good words in. But I was not going to make my stay unpleasant. The lift up to 2nd floor was new and pleasant, the corridor was the same we noticed how far apart the doors were and thought the rooms must be extremely large. On entering our room/deluxe suite we are in a hallway to the left our lunge to the right of that the small but cosy kitchenette with everything you need (also the corkscrew, I had to check!) i.e. cooker, fridge and microwave and enough kitchen stuff. To the right of that the bathroom and then the bedroom. There are two televisions in the two rooms. Now, although Rhodes in the Square was closed I can tell you for a 3-course lunch is under £20 and for dinner is £36. We ate out in Bayswater and had sushi for £16 for the two of us. We did have the Full English breakfast for £12.95, I must say the variety is not much compared to many other hotels I have been to: eggs, sausages (cumberlands...mmmhhh), beans, mushrooms, tomatoes, hash browns and bacon I think that was it. But you can also have the continental, all of the food tasted fresh and the service was grand. The leisure facilities are also available but they close early at 8pm, I don?t know if that was due to the bank holiday or not. I will be booking a longer stay when I get a chance.
I read the review from 2001 last Friday, as we were staying at the Dolhpin Square for the weekend. Whether it was just the refurbishment, but the hotel we stayed at could've been an entirely different one to the previous reviewer. We were greeted by friendly staff and given a room on the 3rd floor, which is currently being refurbished. They were near the end of it and all we saw was a billboard cutting off a small section of the corridor which hadn't been finished yet. We were the first people to use our room since the renovations, a deluxe studio which we'd got for less than 1/2 price through a hotel website. The hall leading to our room was light and airy, the room itself was wonderful, with a spacious bathroom and bedroom, fully equipped kitchenette with pine units, dining table and chairs and a large comfy sofa. We ordered bath robes, which are free from room service and relaxed into the weekend. We tried both restaurants, Rhodes in the Square is expensive but worth it as the food is sublime. the Brasserie is colourful and cheerful, with better service (Rhodes was a little slow and quite cold in the restaurant too) but slightly less quality in the food, however it's also cheaper! You don't miss not having a mini bar as you're provided with a fridge and in the hotel's shopping arcade there's an off licence. The negative points are that the pool is a little cold and sauna/steam rooms are segregated - I would've liked to have gone into the sauna but the changing room was deserted so it wasn't particularly a safe idea, and it's no fun on your own anyway! Also a corkscrew isn't provided so take one or else you'll end up hunting Pimlico for one, like we did. Also our shower had a tendancy to drip and don't bother with the chocolate cake from room service as the ones in the restaurants are much better! If you need anything, Christian on reception is super helpful, he can reccommend places to ea
t etc and the concierge is also useful. It sounds to me as though the refurbishment has definitely gone well, as we had a tv in our lounge and our bedroom, the room was light and comfortable and the staff courteous and efficient. Overall our stay was definitely up to 4 star standard and I would reccommend the hotel to anyone.
Ever heard that saying? Normally it is aimed at very good books with scrappy, well-thumbed covers and pages. This time it is aimed at a crap hotel with a nice facade. The outside of the hotel looks very chic, combined with a Gary Rhodes restaurant, and with the M16 building only a few hundred metres away you know you are in a prime location (Pimlico Tube Station is about 150 yards away too). Once you go inside everything still has the glamourous look with highly polished furniture, counters and glass everywhere. All the staff are very smart in their uniforms and apart from the dated computer systems (cos I notice things like this) everything was going well. We had already spoken with the receptionist who booked us in, Christian, as we had got lost in the London traffic and needed diretions and he was very friendly an cracked jokes with us as we waited for the computer to process our application. All of the staff were very good (except for the fact that the consierge didn't speak English too well). We parked the car in the hotel's parking spaces (very handy and at a reasonable price for London at £15) and then took our bags to our room. The lift reflected the decor of the reception area - chic and stylish with mirrors everywhere, aluminium where there were no mirrors ands highly polished floors. Then wer got out at our floor and it all started going downhill... The place started to look shabby as soon as the doors opened up on the third floor. All the doors to the rooms are made from bland plain wood panels with oversize electronic locks built in. There is a spyhole built in (those ones that magnify whatever you are looking at) and inside the door there is a warning about checking who you open your door too. Not very reassuring. Inside the rooms are no better than the dark, badly decorated hallways. Most of the walls are an off-white colour or brown, which could look okay if the rest of the room was decorated in a
way that highlighted that. These rooms, I am afraid, are decorated like a 1970's old person's home. The old sofa was very, VERY soft and was actually painful to sit in for too long, the TV had no aerial lead when we got there and the little illumination thrown out by the two lamps was quickly eaten up by the walls, carpet and curtains. When we booked the room we were told we could have a suite for £99 per night as there was a special deal on that weekend. What a let down. The 'suite' meant that it had a small kitchenette thang made completely of white crappy cupboards and a few pieces of cutlery and crockery. There was also a fridge and oven but there was no minibar. There was 24hr room service, but that was so expensive we decided to go to the off licence across the road to stock up the fridge before buying anything from it. The bedroom was dark. All the lights had to be on to see where you were going and even then it was still very dark. Two single beds pushed together made up the king-sized double on offer (which was very comfortable so maybe that isn't a complaint) and there was no TV in there! The best thing about staying in a hotel is coming back and drinking the mini-bar dry while lying in bed watching Cartoon Network! :) The brochure also boasts of a large indoor heated swimming pool with bar area and restaurant. We didn't try to go to Gary Rhodes' restaurant which was good as it is shut on Sundays and Mondays (why?) but the hotel restaurant is small and cramped, squeezed into a floor with a tiny loud bar which both over looked the small pool. We were going to have a drink in the bar before going to the restaurant we had booked for the evening but the music was on very loud and the few other people in there were already shouting over the sound. Instead we found somewhere else... Anyway, the room was terrible. Luckily we had only planned to use the room for sleeping so the fact that it had only
cost us £99 per night to be so close to the city was okay with us.