Intro to London 2016: To See a GOAT on Grass
American Airlines Business Class Chicago (ORD) to London (LHR)
Radisson Blu Edwardian Hampshire Leicester Square
The May Fair Hotel
Buckingham Palace and Changing of the Guard
St. Pauls Cathedral
Tower of London and Tower Bridge
Dining in London
Brexit, London Street Scenes and Red bus tour
British Airways Business Class London (LHR) to Chicago (ORD)
Radisson Blue Edwardian Hampshire Leicester Square
We were dropped off by our driver at the hotel. Actually it was just down the street a bit since it was almost impossible for the driver or us to tell where the front door to the property was. In fact the street in front of the property appears to be closed to cars/vehicles. There is no traffic in front of the hotel and directly across the street they are in the beginning stages of building a large building.
Once we found the property and walked in we were treated warmly by the doormen. We were escorted over to the front desk where a very professional checkin agent helped check us in. Since it was only around 10:30 a.m. or so we were advised that our room wasn’t quite ready yet. We decided to waste some time and had a light breakfast at the hotels restaurant. After our breakfast I decided to ask if our room was ready. He checked and said not yet. They offered to call us when it was ready but we didn’t have cell service overseas and thus decided just to keep our backpacks on us and walk around the city for a while.
After a few hours of walking around we came back closer to 1 p.m. and then our room was ready and we were given our room keys. The hotel elevators are very small and the three of us just fit in. Our bags came separately via bellman.
There’s not much to say about the room. Kind of your standard cookie cutter, slightly dated, dark Radisson. Nothing to really be excited about. The room was comfortable and clean. We noticed a small bug on one of our bags and got concerned that it could be a bed bug but it was not as I checked the entire bed to be sure. We had a nice view out of our window of Leicester square. It was a bit loud outside the room during the daytime but we were able to sleep ok at night.
We had asked for a crib to be set up and one was brought up immediately and placed next to our bed. The crib did have some small stains on the side but the sheets/bedding was of course clean. It didn’t really matter because our baby somehow found his way in our bed most nights on this trip.
There was one North American power plug in the room which was above the desk which was nice as some hotels don’t have any and need an adapter. The room size was average and big enough for a side table and chair and large size desk which the TV sat on.
Probably the best part of our room was the bathroom. The bathroom had a nice white marble and rainfall shower head. My wife didn’t like that because her hair would get wet unless she wore a shower cap. Water pressure was fine and the toiletries and amenities were OK. The tub was a bit narrow and I am never a fan of European half glass shower doors but we made due.
The bathroom had a heated towel rack which was nice and enough room for a bidet next to the toilet. Aesthetically the bathroom was nice as compared to the rest of the room.
Our room had a very good wifi signal which was nice and came in handy when I needed to buy Wimbledon tickets right at 9 a.m. The bed was cozy and there were complimentary waters provided daily. We did get a Club Carlson Gold amenity pack of gummy bears and a welcome letter from the hotel manager.
Aside from the hard product and service the great thing about this property is the location. There are many attractions that are walkable from the hotel. We walked to Buckingham Palace and St. James Park, Big Bend and Westminster Abbey from the hotel. There are also three subway (tube) stations near the property (Leicester Square, Charring Cross or Piccadilly Circus). The area is a bit touristy and right outside the hotel there is a place to buy theatre tickets where the line is long most of the day. There are no shortage of eating establishments right next to the hotel and in the direct area which is a plus too.
The cash rate for our two nights was $776.52 grand total. Personally I would never pay that rate for this property or really any Radisson Blu hotel. However we still had a chunk of points that needed to be redeemed before Club Carlson devalued their award chart. Thus it was an easy decision to burn 50,000 Club Carlson Gold points for two nights here. Nowadays if you were to book this with points it’s 70,000 points per night. When I booked using points I got the 2nd night free as a perk of my Club Carlson Visa card. That perk is no longer available sadly.
So bottom line, we paid $0 plus 50,000 points for two nights, saving us $776!
We would have no problem staying here again on points for free but we would not pay to stay here. In the future if I am redeeming points in London I would rather book the May Fair which I will review in the next blogpost!