The perfect base from which to explore London

The perfect base from which to explore London

I spent one night at the five-star London Hilton on Park Lane in a King Hilton Guestroom on the ninth floor. It’s the tallest hotel, standing at 101 metres, located on prestigious Park Lane in the heart of Mayfair, offering stunning views of London from all 453 guest rooms and 56 suites. Here’s all about my experience at the high-luxury hotel.

Check-in

As I approached the hotel it was easy to see why guests of the London Hilton on Park Lane would choose to stay here; it has a great location. Lined outside was a row of black cab taxi’s always at the ready to transport guests wherever they would like to go. After a quick friendly nod, smile and ‘Good afternoon’ from the smartly-dressed doorman, I made my way in to the hotel through the shiny revolving doors.

The dimly-lit and fresh-scented entrance hall epitomises the grandeur of this beautiful hotel. A luxurious rug lies in the lobby with a few seats and a couple of sofas for guests to relax on. Both the concierge and reception desks were busy when I arrived, however, I noticed that there were lots of staff around and as soon as a member of staff saw a guest waiting, they would immediately make room for them at the check-in desk, which was rather large – they never let a queue form which was great because I didn’t have to wait longer than a minute or so to check-in.

At check-in you will be asked to present a credit or debit card to cover anything used from the minibar. This is very normal of hotels to do. Check-in was simple and the staff very friendly, while one looked up my details on the computer and got my room key ready, another had come around the desk to carry my luggage to the lift and explain to me exactly how the lifts work. This fast, hassle-free and welcoming approach was something, after looking around; I noticed that every guest received.

Room

Room 903 was to be my home for the night - an incredibly large room (22m²/237sq.ft) facing towards the front of the hotel which usually sleeps two adults and I was told is newly-refurbished. The contemporary room had cool, neutral and calm-toned décor with large wall-width and ceiling-high windows displaying far-reaching views of London city. The snug window seat is a nice touch and a great place to relax and enjoy the breathtaking views.

There is ample storage space, for all your luggage, in fitted wardrobes as you enter the room, which also has a delightfully comfortable king bed, a large work desk area with adjustable lamp, a flat screen television and a super-comfy easy chair. The marble bathroom is also spacious, clean, light and stocked with clinical skin care toiletries from Peter Thomas Roth which I found to be reinvigorating and a real boost for my skin the next morning.

Though this room is at the front of the hotel, from where you can see the main roads and vehicles driving by, there was absolutely no outside noise coming into the room. Furthermore, the windows had automatic roller blinds as well as thick curtains to shield the light, which is especially useful if you are hoping for a lie-in on your trip to London.

There is no place for boredom at the London Hilton on Park Lane. You can entertain yourself with on-demand movies, TV-Pay per view, TV-Premium HBO, CNN, ESPN, TV-Standard Networks and plenty of free channels. The minibar is also stocked to the brim with both alcoholic and non-alcoholic drinks and snacks like crisps, chocolate and nuts so if, like me, you get peckish in the evening or night and don’t want to leave you room, just open up the minibar and take your pick. Similarly, if you’re at the hotel with a loved one or celebrating a special occasion, there is a bottle of champagne and glasses in the minibar too. For tea and coffee lovers there’s a beautiful cup and tea pot set waiting with a supply of tea, coffee and milk as well as a kettle, in the room.

The quality of the mattress, pillows and all bedding was superb, making for a comfortable night’s sleep. Other room amenities and features include air conditioning, an adjustable thermostat, automatic door closer, electronic locks, electronic smoke detector, scald proof shower/tub, hairdryer, internet access (paid for) and trouser press. You can also arrange for connecting rooms and various telephone services such as Auto Wakeup.

Hotel

The hotel offers innovative drinking and dining venues. Its five bars and restaurants have become destinations in themselves, offering something for every taste. The first of which is the popular Polynesian brand Trader Vic’s which opened three weeks prior to the hotel opening and has remained a huge hit with guests and foodies alike. Michelin-starred Galvin at Windows restaurant and bar, located on the 28th floor with spectacular views of London, is another popular destination restaurant serving exquisite modern French haute cuisine.

The hotel also boasts Podium restaurant and bar, where I had afternoon tea with a friend, and which has fast become famous for its successful “Confessions of a Chocoholic” Chocolate Afternoon Tea. There is also POP Bar which offers guests cocktails into the early hours and the hotel is also home to the renowned nightclub Whisky Mist at Zeta, popular with the London Celebrity scene. Despite offering a very lively night scene, once again, I was not disturbed by any noise during the night.

If you fancy staying in your room, maybe tucked in the huge bed watching a movie, then fear not, the best thing about the hotel is that is offers in-room dining with a 24-hour food menu which you can find along with a Guest Services Book in your room next to the TV. There is everything from fish and chips to pizza and even an extensive middle-eastern food menu with humus, cous cous and tagine to name but a few dishes, and best of all, there is a specially designed night-time menu which you can order off at any time in the late evening and throughout the night.

Service

The service I experienced at the hotel was nothing short of exceptional. The staff was friendly, courteous, attentive and helpful. I found that my room did not have a bottle opener when I wanted to open a bottle of Coke from the minibar. I called down to reception and a bottle opener was sent up within minutes along with some complimentary biscuits to make up for any inconvenience which I found to be a very kind gesture from the hotel.

The concierge desk was also very helpful especially as I was booked in for afternoon tea after I had checked-out. They allowed me to leave my luggage in a safe place until after lunch, which was very helpful as I did not want to be seated in the Podium Restaurant with a large suitcase besides me.

Location

This is the winner for me when it comes to London Hilton on Park Lane, its position in the sought after area of Mayfair. The hotel has numerous bus stops just across the road from it, which I used to visit Harrods in Kensington. The tube (underground rail network) is also a fantastic way of getting around London and a mere 3-5 minute walk away from the hotel is Hyde Park Corner station on the Piccadilly line which offers direct routes to all Heathrow Airport terminals.

For those who want to discover on foot, picturesque Hyde Park and tourist-trap Buckingham Palace are literally around the corner from the hotel and from there it is fairly easy to walk around and explore London further.  

Downfall

Travellers and guests treating themselves to a luxury break may find the food prices and internet charge pricey. It was £20 for 24-hour access to the internet and a 200ml bottle of coke from the minibar was priced at £4.50. Of course, in such a high-luxury, opulent and extravagant property, such amenities are expected to come at a price. However, these prices may be eye-popping for even the frequent luxury traveller. I would recommend only using minibar items if you’re incredibly peckish or thirsty and can’t get out to a shop, and where possible, I would say it would be wiser to opt for a proper meal off the food menu as you’re bound to get more for your money.

Verdict

My stay at the London Hilton on Park Lane was more comfortable and enjoyable than it could have been. Don’t be put off by the towering, concrete and square block façade as, inside, the hotel is nothing short of elegance, class and comfort. The staff is courteous and the service is impeccable with guest requests being handled promptly. Everyone I came across was friendly and enjoying their time at the hotel. I only wish to have been able to stay on the side of the hotel where the views were overlooking Hyde Park, though this is more of a personal request that paying guests can make when booking their room at the hotel.

Though the hotel has a great reputation for business travellers, I say that if you’re a leisure traveller looking for something grand yet contemporary with an array of amenities and dining options, then the London Hilton on Park Lane is the perfect base from which to explore London and take rest. After a pretty faultless and memorable night’s stay, I’m sure that London Hilton on Park Lane will remain at the forefront of the luxury-London travel market.

For more information on London Hilton on Park Lane, or to book a room, click here

For more information on the ‘Spies the Limit’ package and to live like James Bond for the weekend, click here

Have you stayed at this hotel or another luxury London hotel? Tell us about your experience in the comments below or tweet us @FemaleFirst_UK

FemaleFirst

Shabana Adam @Shabana_FAM


by for www.femalefirst.co.uk
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