I've looked over the other reviews to see if there is something I can add. This is a hotel that starts with very high expectations. The public spaces and exterior are astonishing, and of course the story of the building's rescue is spellbinding. We have enjoyed the bars and restaurant prior to being guests, so we decided to splash out on a recent trip and stay for a few (3) nights on the way home from Paris.
We stayed in one of the Chambers Suites, and this gives rise to the first caveat. While I knew exactly what I was getting (there are floorplans on the website, if you search for them), I still strongly dislike the idea of calling a large hotel room a "Junior Suite", just because it has a couch and/or a desk in it. In my mind, the word "suite" means two rooms, with a door between them. We stayed in a lovely large room, but it was not a suite, despite being advertised as such.
Second, and this is also endemic of old hotels that have been repurposed into modern ones, was the bathroom. It was far too small for the room. While it had both a shower and a bath, the shower stall was very small -- barely large enough to turn around in, and the tub was very shallow.
Beds are always a matter of personal preference, but the bed here was quite hard, even though I like a firm mattress, and would have benefited greatly by a pillow-top.
Finally, there were some maintenance issues with the room: a slow shower drain, and a loose toilet, that on our final morning finally broke away from the wall, necessitating a move to another room just long enough to take a shower.
The staff works hard to be solicitous, and generally succeeds -- they are invariably pleasant, but could use some training. One thing that was inexcusable was turning up at the front of the hotel on a Saturday night and being unable to get a taxi for 40 minutes. The bellmen could have simply walked to the taxi rank at King's Cross (which we eventually did), but instead we were given bus directions. At 6:45pm, the bellmen should have several taxis waiting, this is standard practice at a luxury hotel, and it was only inexperience and poor training that led to this unfortunate circumstance.
So the bottom line is that this is, in many ways, an almost magic place to stay given the public spaces, and the general finish of the Chambers rooms, but it will disappoint and frustrate anyone looking for a real 5-star hotel experience. Go with appropriate (lower) expectations, and you will be pleased.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Hailed as London's most romantic building, the St Pancras Renaissance Hotel is widely recognised as one of city's greatest Victorian landmarks. The 245-room hotel now boasts not only one of the most majestic staircases in Britain, but two bars & restaurants, a spa, a gentleman's grooming salon as well as some of the largest and most beautiful suites in the city. Our 5 star hotel is located at St Pancras International Station and is brimming with a fairytale facade that Sir George Gilbert Scott fashioned for the Midland Grand. Our hotel earns the ability to exceed every expectation while blending Victorian splendor with modern style and service. ... more less
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