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Can standard be below standard?
The Grosvenor Hotel (London)
Member Name: MeganFF
The Grosvenor Hotel (London)
Advantages: Impressive public areas, comfy bed
Disadvantages: Poor decor, tiny room, no cold water
The Grosvenor Hotel in London's Victoria is an imposing building.
Situated just round the corner from Victoria Station, it actually has a 'back entrance' direct into the station, which we discovered upon leaving the area. Oh well, entering by the front door was so much better anyway.
Going up the outside steps, my other half was a little uneasy, thinking that this grand hotel couldn't be where we were meant to be. (But I mean, how many Grosvenor Hotels are there in Victoria??) So we made our way up the steps and through the revolving door.
The entrance lobby (Area? Room? What do you call such a place?) was straight out of the glamorous elegant past. The stair case swept away, drawing your eyes upwards towards the distant ceilings. I say distant because high just doesn't come close to describing the height of these rooms.
We approached reception (almost hidden to the left, I guess to not distract from the elegance of the lobby) where we were told we were in the correct building, and was promptly handed two card keys and directed to the lifts. Yes, I would've loved to have used those magnificent stairs, but dressed in combats and trainers I really would've felt out of place. And we were on the fifth floor.
We found our room easy enough, then promptly wished we hadn't.
I had booked a mere Standard Double Room. Now, we've stayed in standard doubles in plenty of other hotels, which makes the Grosvenor Standard Double a broom cupboard.
It was tiny. Through the door, and down a short hallway (past the bathroom), you find the bed round the corner. Squeezed in tight. A one foot gap one side, a two foot gap the other.
Now that's not a problem. We only tended to sleep in it after all.
The room had two windows, both opened, though on a chain. If only housekeeping had thought to leave the windows open for our arrival. It was warm and airless. We immediately opened the window (about two inches!!) and switched on the fan they had conveniently left in the room.
There was an air-con unit in the room, but it wasn't connected to its vent hose, which in turn wasn't connected to the outside. It also wasn't connected to the electricity, so that was out.
A flat screen TV was poised on an arm, just at the right height and position to wack your head on it if you tried to get out of bed at the wrong angle. (No I didn't, just) But then, I guess with a room this size, there was nowhere else to put it.
Anyway, we changed and headed out to see Wicked (please read my review on the show), via the bar.
Now we knew things were likely to be more expensive in London, and always are in hotels, but £12 for a small red wine and a vodka&coke surprised us both.
You could choose to either sit in the spacious hallway, in the lounge that was showing the cricket, or the Harvard Bar.
We opted for the bar, and it really is something.
After sitting, we discovered that it was waiter served. Oh well. It's decorated like an old fashion 'mens' club. All mahogany panelling, leather seating, big fireplaces. It was amazing. Of course, with the distant ceilings, the room was actually airy and light.
Needless to say though, we decided to go to the pub across the road after the show instead of returning to the hotel bar. Half the price, and had real ales for Mr MeganFF.
After a pretty comfortable nights sleep, my other half decided to take a shower before we had to check out (noon I think). He failed. After a short investigation, we discovered the only cold water outlet in the bathroom was the bath tap (excl. loo, didn't stick my hand in there!!). Mr M turned the shower to its coldest setting, and it was still scolding. So he had a bath instead.
We dressed and checked out. Nothing to pay as it had been prepaid, so no nasty surprises.
For a four star hotel, I have to admit to being severely disappointed in the room. The hotel communal areas were gorgeous, but behind the door of the standard room 510, it certainly wasn't four star. The décor was scruffy, and it was too small. Plus the plumbing issue.
If someone suggested going to see a show in Victoria, would I stay there again?
I would find out how much extra the 'better' rooms were and then check them against other hotels in the area. Then decide. So maybe.
For a single night stay, it didn't spoil our trip, but it certainly didn't enhance it
Summary: Pay extra, hope to get better
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