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Nice low-budget hotel.
Regents Palace (London)
Member Name: lukeuea
Regents Palace (London)
Date: 01/08/03, updated on 28/08/03 (328 review reads)
Advantages: Location, Food, Price
Disadvantages: The view, The noise
My girlfriend and I recently spent a weekend in London seeing a selection of shows we?d been wanting to see for quite some time, and we stayed overnight in the Regent Palace Hotel.
There were two main reasons I picked the Regent Palace Hotel:
1) The price- at £79 for the night it was the cheapest in the area, and actually the only one I could reasonably afford, what with being a student. The prices generally start at about £34 per person per night.
2) The location appeared to be superb, apparently overlooking the statue of Eros and the lights of Piccadilly Circus.
On the way there I had been permanently worried that I had spent my money on what would turn out to be some God-awful dive, so when we arrived at the relatively lush, splendid hotel I was pleasantly surprised. We queued to get our room key, and then headed up to our room, following the maze of corridors and signs along.
Having almost got the wrong room due to the bad handwriting of the person who?d written down our room number, we finally found our room and went in.
The room itself was spacious, albeit unglamorous, with a double bed, sink, television, phone, and tea/coffee making facilities. Nicely decorated, albeit it far from the splendor of the reception area, but certainly very good for such a good location at such a low price. No en-suite, but that would have been £15 extra or so. There are apparently shower facilities available for those with ?standard? rooms such as ours, but it?s not just a matter of walking along and using one, there seemed to be an overly complicated process in booking them (to do with dialing reception, waiting for someone to come along with a key and allocate you a bathroom etc. etc.) and we couldn?t be bothered with the fuss.
My only disappointment with the room was the view. The website had talked of ?overlooking Eros and the world famous lights of Piccadilly Circus?, and hence I?d had romantic notions of looking out o
ver the London scenery with my girlfriend and watching the world go by. How wrong I was.
Upon opening the curtains, I was presented not with Eros, nor with any recognisable bit of London scenery, but rather dozens and dozens of other windows. The layout of the building, you see, is diamond shaped, with a huge gap in the middle. While half of the rooms have external walls and hence look out over London, half of the rooms have internal walls and hence look inward at the windows of other rooms in the hotel. And that, dear friends, is what we had. A view of the other internal side of the building, twelve-stories high, in dirty beige brick with pipes and gutter pipes running all over it. And the noise! The air conditioning for the whole building appeared to be placed at the bottom of this middle gap, so imagine the noise of your computer?s fan whirring away, multiplied by ten thousand. We had the window shut and the curtains drawn most of the time we were there.
Even the rooms on the outside wall had only views of the road and of nearby buildings, very few could see Eros and Piccadilly Circus unless the occupants could see through walls and round corners.
The location, however, was ideal. Within easy walking distance (less than two minutes) of a fair few of London?s theatres and within seconds of Piccadilly Circus tube station.
The food was also good. The option available is either a ?boxed Continental? breakfast or a ?Full English? breakfast (which we went for), which involves a very good buffet at ?Callaghans Irish Bar?/restaurant, which comprises of cereal, toast, cooked breakfast, whatever you like really, for an all-inclusive price. It?s also very tasty.
On the whole, if you?re going to London to see theatre shows on a low budget, this is a great hotel. Remember, when booking, to try and ask for a room with a window facing outwards into London. The location and the food were superb. If, on the other hand, you?re look
or something a little more luxurious and have a bigger budget, then this probably won?t be much to your liking.
Additional: This hotel has since been featured on a short, desperate segment on ITV's "Hotels From Hell". I really don't think it deserved that kind of criticism. People need to remember that £79 per room per night in London is cheap. So the skirting board was a bit grubby in one room and there was a nappy in the central bit (where the air conditioning vents are) when they visited. Those are hardly permanent features. Personally, having visited the hotel I don't feel that it deserved that harsh judgement. I'd certainly stay there again.
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