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DISCUSSION for Hilton Honors Hotels in or near London, United Kingdom {GBR}

DISCUSSION for Hilton Honors Hotels in or near London, United Kingdom {GBR}

Old Mar 28, 21, 3:11 am
  #106  
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I think that question hangs on how England emerges from Lockdown, which is being done in stages from tomorrow through to mid June. At the moment there is an argument to stay in a Hampton since the restrictions and reductions in services mean you basically will only get a bed and breakfast bag whereever you go. So unless you are travelling sooner, you may want to check here again in say late May, since hopefully things will be very different to today.

But talking generally, Park Lane was always - in my opinion - overpriced for what it was. It could charge a premimum for its name and its excellent location, but in terms of services and facilities it wasn't much different from the Metropole, which has recently had an refurbishment of its public areas. Both hotels have a number of Arab visitors who liked the neighbourhoods and in the case of Park Lane the hotel could and would charge a premium for it. So I certainly wouldn't pay more for Park Lane over the Conrad or Bankside, accepting that Bankside is very slightly out of the way. If it's the view you want, and a park at the door, then yes Park Lane has something going for it - and it's a generally well run hotel. So I guess a lot hinges on what you are looking to do during the visit. So for example Waldorf Hilton is great if you are doing plays and other West End shows for example, but that won't be allowed before June and there is a big question mark on how that hotel will operate until then.
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Old Mar 28, 21, 8:06 am
  #107  
brp
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Thanks for the input. We have stayed at the Waldorf Hilton several times and do like the West End location. We are going late July, so I expect thratre to be back in full swing. We've also stayed at Conrad and quite enjoyed it. With all of that said, we walk a great deal, so even considered Conrad convenient to West End

As for trip intentions, we've been enough times that we don't have an agenda. We'll certainly see what's on offer at Leicester Square for theatre discounts. Pubs, of course. But nothing in particular now what our May trip and Royal Albert Hall Clapton show are moved out a year.

Since this will use free night certificates and points, cost is no object, so to speak. Of course, I don't want to stay at the "expensive" place just for cost if it's not really worth the stay.

At the moment leaning toward Mayfair as it's new to us and the comments seem good.

Bankside is definitely on the future list, though.

Cheers.
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Old Mar 28, 21, 10:11 am
  #108  
 
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I am a fan of the Park Lane. If you get a room above the 15th floor the views are epic, London has so few buildings that tall. And the location is great, 15-20 minute walk to much of what you want to do in London.
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Old Mar 28, 21, 10:56 am
  #109  
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Originally Posted by brp
Thanks for the input. We have stayed at the Waldorf Hilton several times and do like the West End location. We are going late July, so I expect thratre to be back in full swing. We've also stayed at Conrad and quite enjoyed it. With all of that said, we walk a great deal, so even considered Conrad convenient to West End
I can't advise on the Bitmore Mayfair since I've not stayed there yet, but yes with a Certificate it would seem a viable option. If you do enjoy walking around then perhaps still consider Bankside, it's an interesting area and the West End is walkable over the bridges. How London will function in July is anyone's guess at the moment, I'm not so confident theatres will be open. But we can assume the parks and most shops will be open, so Park Lane would be valid for this. What I would say is that the Conrad has probably tried harder than most places to keep up standards during this pandemic, so if you like it, then maybe stick with what you know? The other one to ponder is perhaps the Trafalgar.
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Old Mar 28, 21, 5:15 pm
  #110  
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Thanks all. I added a 2-night points reservation at Park Lane as well. I'll do some more research and decide which to visit for the trip and use the 2 cert night for the other nights and cancel the duplicate points reservation.
Interestingly, Park Lane indicates that they are not presently open.

As Diamond, we can likely get a high floor for our visit as I still expect occupancy to be lowish in July.

As to Conrad, it was nice, but we would like to explore something new for now.

Cheers.
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Old Mar 29, 21, 1:34 am
  #111  
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Originally Posted by brp
As Diamond, we can likely get a high floor for our visit as I still expect occupancy to be lowish in July.
OLCI works well in this respect at Park Lane, however if you don't see a good high room to begin with, hold off room confirmation until the day of arrival to see if you get an option then.

Many hotels are shut at the moment, taking advantage of the government's furlough scheme. Hotels seem to have fallen into three groups - those that furlough most staff but keep a skeleton staff going and provide a hotel with limited services - those that have closed, put everyone on furlough, but will definitely reopen on 12 May (the relevant step in the Lockdown easing) and finally those that will want to see profitable levels of business before reopening and will stay furloughed until they reckon the critical mass is there.
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Old Mar 29, 21, 1:55 am
  #112  
 
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Doubletree by Hilton - West End

I have been a big fan of the Doubletree by Hilton - West End property in recent years. I have stayed there 13 times in recent years. I have tried most other properties in London, but even as Diamond, it has meant little or nothing in benefits or potential upgrades and I am big on loyalty, but would like to have some sort of relationship when staying at the same property averaging 2-4 times per year. I used to stay at the Hilton Hyde Park (over 10 times in a row- and did not get any upgrades most of the time, even in off season, so it was time to move on). I also stayed at the Waldorf 5 times, but rarely got any room upgrades even in the category in the off season. I liked the Conrad, but the location was not the best for me. I used to stay at the Trafalgar for a few times when it opened and it was great, but then when it changed again, it did not have the services I wanted such as room service. I then made the Doubletree my go to property. With so many stays, there can be problems from time to time, but how they are handled and the end result is what matters. My last stay was mid-February 2020 before the world changed. When we are allowed to travel to London again from the US, I plan on having a longer business trip and staying at this property. Obviously, my observations are pre-covid, but the property had a very nice breakfast buffet, with all of the usual items and eggs/omelets made to order. Since I travelled for business and had many meetings, I would escape in my room and have room service for lunch or dinner when not out. Their room service was excellent. In their restaurant, they also had their own version of Afternoon Tea for 25 Pounds which was a great value and a nice escape. The Concierge/Bell staff was always friendly and it felt great during each return when the staff would welcome me back as I walked through the lobby. The location of the hotel in Holburn is a 5 minute walk from the Tube and the Piccadilly and Central lines, which gives amazing access all of the the city or to connections to all other lines a few stops away. With traffic in London, a taxi is rarely faster than the Tube when so close to the hotel. Although the High Street in this area has changed tremendously in the past 10 years from its own community of local shops to more chains and less essentials, there is a large supermarket and Boots (drug store) across from the Tube and many of the side streets off of the main street have dry cleaners/laundry for much less than any hotel, mom and pop restaurants and barbers, etc. I don't know what the hotel will be like when I hope to return as soon as the summer if possible, but it is my current favorite. There is no executive lounge at this property, but some of the newer category rooms include a free daily stocked mini-fridge with snacks and non-alcoholic beverages. Personally, some of the lowest level category rooms are too small and do not have enough amenities, so I always book at least a deluxe room and if receive any type of upgrade as a Diamond, it is a welcome surprise, but if I don't, at least I know I have a room that I am happy with. Their executive wing type rooms or newly renovated rooms on the highest floors are the nicest and depending upon whether it is high season or not can be reasonably priced of sometimes a lot (over 300 pounds), but I try to book as far in advance as possible to receive the best rate possible.
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Old Mar 29, 21, 4:49 am
  #113  
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Originally Posted by LHR Wannabee
I have been a big fan of the Doubletree by Hilton - West End property in recent years. I have stayed there 13 times in recent years. I have tried most other properties in London, but even as Diamond, it has meant little or nothing in benefits or potential upgrades and I am big on loyalty, but would like to have some sort of relationship when staying at the same property averaging 2-4 times per year.
I think the fast revolving door of staffing in London hotels is the problem there, it's easier to get that relationship if the staff stay put! The two London properties that I know are quite good at this are Hilton T4 (which has recently reopened) and Olympia. I think Canary Wharf was also quite good in this respect. West End, yes I have been reasonably pleased by my stays there, here is the thread and there are some photos I took in post 150. The room shown there must have been an upgrade, I tend to book the cheaper rooms.
DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel London - West End {GBR}

Breakfast is in a basement area, and I'd prefer some natural light, but the service and food provision is good and they allocate senior staff to Diamonds. I don't stay often enough to know if the staff turnover is low though. I think I'm with you, I don't drink alcohol so lounge provision is something I can take or leave, but having a staff member who remembers you and your preferences can be priceless if handled well. Unfortunately, or possibly fortunately, I think we start from Ground Zero when we get over this pandemic. The trauma to London's hospitality sector is diffficult to overstate, and many, many people won't be coming back to it. But it does give the chance to rebuild business relationships and maybe we won't take human relationships quite as much for granted as before. So while I don't know whether DT West End will meet your needs going forward, I think you probably would find somewhere similar that does.
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Old Mar 29, 21, 6:33 am
  #114  
 
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I've booked Doubletree at the Excel for the first weekend that hotels are allowed to open to leisure. I don't need to be in London itself, but it's conveniently located about half way between my brother and my parents, and I can't visit them without staying overnight somewhere nearby.

What do you reckon I should be expecting to see, in terms of amenities. I'm paying about 15 a night more to the DT, but if it'll just be a room and nothing else, the it might be more worthwhile me going to the Hampton instead. I stayed in a hotel in Crawley just before Xmas, so I'm aware of the pared back services that have been on offer of late.

I realise it's really difficult to say definitively what to expect.
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Old Mar 29, 21, 7:06 am
  #115  
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Originally Posted by DeeGee26.2
I realise it's really difficult to say definitively what to expect.
Indeed it's difficult to predict. There will be few restrictions on hotels at that point, so they can run indoor food and beverage service, and many hotels will presumably be trying to extract additional spend by offering catering facilities that do precisely this. From "no sooner than" 21 June there is the prospect of even night clubs reopening. The DT and Hampton are close to each other, some DT rooms have doors overlooking the old docks (you may need to get a key from reception though) whereas the Hampton is further back with less of a view. There is some noise from LCY airport at the DT, not so much at the Hampton. In your shoes I'd probably go for the DT, unless the Hampton ended up being noticeably cheaper.
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Old Mar 29, 21, 7:15 am
  #116  
 
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Originally Posted by corporate-wage-slave
In your shoes I'd probably go for the DT, unless the Hampton ended up being noticeably cheaper.
Thanks, part of the difference in price will be counterbalanced by the free parking at the DT, if I manage to bag one of the handful of spaces.

Although I'm going to be visiting family, I'm going to get down early and maybe spend a bit of time on Friday afternoon evening just relaxing and enjoying being somewhere that isn't either my house or my office. My wife and kids aren't coming with me, so I'll have a room to myself and I'm mainly looking forward to the quiet. And getting some kind of decent breakfast in the morning.

I've booked a "Dream Away" rate which claims to offer early check in and late check out, but doesn't give any indication as to what this actually means. I'd like Early Check in if I can have it, do I need to turn up early and hope, or is there any way I can request it? There's about three and a half hours from my house to the hotel, so although I'm setting off in the morning to allow for a stop en route, I'd rather get there without stopping and have some hotel room time instead. I'd feel safer eating in a hotel restaurant or bar - or in my room - than in a Motorway Services at the moment.
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Old Mar 29, 21, 8:54 am
  #117  
 
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Originally Posted by corporate-wage-slave
Indeed it's difficult to predict. There will be few restrictions on hotels at that point, so they can run indoor food and beverage service, and many hotels will presumably be trying to extract additional spend by offering catering facilities that do precisely this. From "no sooner than" 21 June there is the prospect of even night clubs reopening. The DT and Hampton are close to each other, some DT rooms have doors overlooking the old docks (you may need to get a key from reception though) whereas the Hampton is further back with less of a view. There is some noise from LCY airport at the DT, not so much at the Hampton. In your shoes I'd probably go for the DT, unless the Hampton ended up being noticeably cheaper.
C-W-S, is there a single property under the Hilton brands umbrella in and around London that you haven't stayed at?
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Old Mar 29, 21, 9:13 am
  #118  
 
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Originally Posted by corporate-wage-slave
some DT rooms have doors overlooking the old docks (you may need to get a key from reception though).
Are those standard rooms available on request, or upgraded rooms?

I'm Silver this year, so no "free" upgrades for me. I've been offered Nor1 to upgrade to a Deluxe room with water view for a rate I'd be happy to pay, am I as likely to be able to ask about a paid upgrade at the front desk when I arrive for a similar price?

Do Nor1 upgrades earn me points?
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Old Mar 29, 21, 9:19 am
  #119  
 
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Originally Posted by corporate-wage-slave
I think the fast revolving door of staffing in London hotels is the problem there, it's easier to get that relationship if the staff stay put! The two London properties that I know are quite good at this are Hilton T4 (which has recently reopened) and Olympia. I think Canary Wharf was also quite good in this respect. West End, yes I have been reasonably pleased by my stays there, here is the thread and there are some photos I took in post 150. The room shown there must have been an upgrade, I tend to book the cheaper rooms.
DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel London - West End {GBR}

Breakfast is in a basement area, and I'd prefer some natural light, but the service and food provision is good and they allocate senior staff to Diamonds. I don't stay often enough to know if the staff turnover is low though. I think I'm with you, I don't drink alcohol so lounge provision is something I can take or leave, but having a staff member who remembers you and your preferences can be priceless if handled well. Unfortunately, or possibly fortunately, I think we start from Ground Zero when we get over this pandemic. The trauma to London's hospitality sector is diffficult to overstate, and many, many people won't be coming back to it. But it does give the chance to rebuild business relationships and maybe we won't take human relationships quite as much for granted as before. So while I don't know whether DT West End will meet your needs going forward, I think you probably would find somewhere similar that does.
You make an excellent point! I forgot about that. Very true! My trips to London were usually the same time of year every year. I started staying at this property back in 2010 when it first became the Doubletree and rotated between this property and the Waldorf and Trafalgar simply based upon rate. Over time, I noticed that, if the staff was the same, it would help for room selection, etc. The problem was almost every year after some stays, all of the staff would be gone and I would start over again! My work around was to get to know a variety of people at the hotel - even the General Managers, who also sometimes would be at the property only a year! More recently, 2 of the people I have gotten to know well are the Cluster Manager (who handles multiple properties in London for the owning/managing company) and one of the Duty Managers, who has worked his way up at this property from first being an Intern. I have had drinks with the Cluster Manager a couple of times and been able to offer candid feedback about things great and not so great. Also, when staying for an extended period (most recently 3 weeks), it gave me a starting point of contact to lock in a room rate and possibly get one of my favorite rooms. My one challenge that I have experienced at this property and others is that they no longer have dedicated housekeeping staff. The trend is for a contracted crew to clean the rooms, but not be assigned to any specific rooms/floor. This results in the room being returned to position one every day and no ownership and/or incentive to caring about the room. (For this reason, tipping for excellent service is not an option since it is not the same person each day). Also, I experienced a number of times with all of my towels removed and none replaced. Days with no soap or shampoo and other days when I was left a dozen little bottles! I ended up laughing it off and would simply call to get towels and soap when needed. Thanks for sharing your earlier post about the property. I truly hope that by the time I am allowed to visit London again that the staff I know have retained their jobs and we can be happy to see each other again - even if things are not the same.
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Old Mar 29, 21, 9:33 am
  #120  
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Originally Posted by teemuflyer
C-W-S, is there a single property under the Hilton brands umbrella in and around London that you haven't stayed at?
Actually there are quite a few I haven't stayed at, not least because they keep opening new ones - such as Canopy London City . In zone 1 / zone 2, it's only Bitmore Mayfair and for some reason Waterloo Hampton that I haven't yet stayed at yet. And further out I'm still waiting to use Hampton Park Royal and Hilton Watford.
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