I was recently invited to stay at The Royal Horseguards hotel and even though I live in London, it’s sometimes nice to get away for the night and enjoy all that a five-star hotel in London has to offer.
The Royal Horseguards hotel is located by the River Thames and is easy to reach by tube, with Embankment station just a short walk away. The hotel faces the river and if you book a river view room you will have a great view of the London Eye. Close by is Trafalgar Square, Houses of Parliament and Covent Garden, so you are really in the heart of London and it is great for tourist spots if you are visiting for the first time or like me who still got excited by seeing the changing of the guards which is a few minutes walk from the hotel. Even though it’s close to all these tourist hot spots, the hotel is tucked away, I say tucked – it’s huge, on Whitehall Court and it’s pretty lovely and quiet around there.
Check-in was quick and I was asked if I needed any assistance with my luggage, to which the porter helped me to the lift. My room was an Executive City Room With A City View, which to be honest there wasn’t much of a view, just the building opposite. So as I mentioned above I would recommend choosing a river view room if that’s something you’d prefer. The room style is modern but with a nod to the past, the building was originally built-in 1884 in the style of a French Chateau, so there are those elements in the decor and for all you fact fans, was home to the original Scotland Yard and used as a base for MI5 during the First World War. With the One Twenty One Two restaurant being named after Scotland Yard’s Whitehall 1212 telephone number.
Back to the decor, the room colour scheme is overall quite dark with a lot of deep red and browns from the wooden furniture and a large oil painting above the bed. The bed was a large king size and was lovely and comfortable. Inside the room you have all the usual amenities; safe to store valuables, hairdryer, iron, wardrobe to hang all your clothing, phones (there were three phones), wine glasses, local information and magazines. It was great to sit back and read ELLE on one of the reclining chairs with a glass of wine. The minibar in the room is complimentary and is stocked with water, juice, crisps, wine and beer. Definitely a great perk.
I also liked the buttons by the main entrance door, these are for to clean the room or do not disturb, when pressing each it lights up outside. It made a nice change from the usual annoying cardboard door hanger. Another little thing that I noticed that would be helpful for visitors from abroad is that there is actually universal voltage sockets, so you could plug your electricals straight in without a converter.
The bathroom is where things get a little extra and at the end of the bath you will find your own TV. There are also speakers in the bathroom so you can listen to music or the TV from the bedroom if you didn’t switch this one on. The bathroom also had a shower, which was fine. I had a little trouble with the taps and getting them on was a challenge but once on I couldn’t get them off. I’m not sure whether that was just me or the fact they were a little troublesome. There was also a big sink and mirror and Elemis toiletries and another thing I really liked was the under floor heating in the bathroom, which is perfect if you fancy a bath. I loved the idea of sitting back in the bath and watching TV after a long day in London.
The hotel offers a turn down service in the evenings for your room, that you can request by ringing up. Now given this was a few years ago, one thing I noticed that was different from my previous stay at the hotel was the lack of welcome note on arrival and small box of chocolates that were in my room. Something I’ve found most five-star hotels do is have a welcome note in your room, so I’m not sure why they are no longer doing this. It’s a small and minor detail, but for me it adds a special something to your stay.
For dining the hotel has a lounge where they serve afternoon tea, a dining room and also a terrace. I had a couple of cocktails in Equus their cocktail bar, it has a relaxed atmosphere and the cocktails were both lovely. In the morning I ordered breakfast to my room which was really brilliant, portions were large and very tasty and it arrived right on the dot of when I had requested.
Overall I had a pleasant stay at the hotel, the service was good, the room was clean and well-kept and the location can’t really be beaten if you’re coming to London to visit.
To book or for more information visit Royal Horseguards Hotel.