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Imperial Hotel (Henley on Thames)

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25 Station Road, Henley-on-Thames, England. Tel: +44 (0)1491 578678

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      07.04.2001 03:45
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      Somewhere to stay around London and ½hour from Heathrow Needing to make regular trips to High Wycombe, we struggled to find somewhere good and affordable to stay. This is a fairly expensive part of the world. Travel Inns in the area are booked up solidly 3-4 weeks in advance. One browsing the internet, I discovered the site: http://www.4hotels.co.uk - worth a visit if you are struggling for somewhere to stay when travelling, the site lists an excellent range of primarily B&B's, but also hotels throughout the UK. From this site, we discovered The Imperial Hotel, Henley-on-Thames, which I was advised was a very 'upmarket and expensive' town. The hotel is described as: ".....this imposing, classical Edwardian building is situated in the Thames Valley in Royal Henley on the edge of the Chiltern Hills, which is designated an area of outstanding natural beauty....". PRICES Three single rooms at a rate of £75 per room, including breakfast. The Imperial takes all the usual forms of payment, including, cash, credit cards (incl. American Express) and cheques. I am not sure about account status for companies, but as it is a relatively small hotel, I would be surprised if they do. THE HOTEL The hotel is a very grand Edwardian, nicely furnished affair and houses 21 en-suite rooms, a combination of singles, doubles and family rooms. It has two bars, and two restaurants, one offering Thai and the other, European cuisine. We did not sample the restaurants, but the bar is quite expensive and closes around 12pm for guests. There is modern, thermostatically controlled radiators throughout the guest areas and bedrooms. OTHER PRICES (PER ROOM) RANGE FROM Single B&B-£75.00-£110.00 Double B&B-£110.00-£130.00 Triple B&B-£135.00-£150.00 Family B&B-£135.00-£150.00 All rooms are 'No Smoking' The main door is locked fairly early and you are issued with
      a key to get in. We wanted a few late drinks at the bar, which was not too well received by the night-porter, drinks can be charged to the room. The bed was rather soft and old, but very comfortable. LOCATION & PARKING The Imperial is situated opposite the town's train station and is a 10 minute walk from the pretty and quaint town centre, which is home to a variety of pubs and eating places, including a JD Wetherspoons, traditionally known as the home of good food and cheap beer, which I am glad to say, again didn't fail us. It is also a short walk away from the river Thames, and the town is home to the Henley regatta during the summer season. The Imperial does not have its own car-park and therefore parking is not easy, there is a pay and display car park a short walk away from the hotel, and on street parking is on a pay-meter basis, priced at 30p/hour. On street parking in designated bays between 6pm and 8am is free. The hotel is close to both the M40 and M4, and about half an hours drive from Heathrow (traffic permitting). BREAKFAST This was served in a bright, nicely furnished room, classical of the era the hotel was built. There was on offer a small range of cereals and orange juice, very tasty coffee, toast and a freshly cooked english breakfast consisting of egg, bacon, sausage, mushrooms and tomatoes, very tasty, but could have been a little bigger. THE ROOM The single rooms were small, but had everything you would expect to find, including tea/coffee making facilites, remote controlled colour TV with limited satellite channels, radio/alarm clock, several power points and a telephone. I personally had a bath and shower, but some of the other rooms only have a shower. You also have access to an iron, useful when travelling on business. Towels, soap, shower gel etc. are supplied in the room if required. SUMMARY Smart hotel with nice furnishings and good food offering
      comfort at a reasonable price for this part of the world, it is in a convenient location for both London and the Chiltern. Yes I would stay there again if on business in the area, but beware the traffic levels if you have to be somewhere at a certain time during the rush hour. (About 15mins from High Wycombe - up to 40 in rush hour). Different atmosphere from the big hotel chains, although we did spot the RED LION HOTEL on the edge of town, which, prices permitted, may be our next destination. WHERE CAN I FIND IT? Imperial Hotel Station Road, Henley-on-Thames, Oxfordshire, RG9 1AT Telephone: 01491 578678 Fax: 01491 572295 English Tourism Council 3 Stars http://www.4hotels.co.uk/uk/hotels/imperialhotel.html

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