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“It's all about service”
Review of Hotel 41

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Hotel 41
Ranked #1 of 1,064 Hotels in London
Sao Paulo, SP
Level Contributor
107 reviews
64 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 119 helpful votes
“It's all about service”
Reviewed 5 July 2011

The 41 may not have the most impressive decor, may not have the most advance technology gadgets, but it has most impressive service I have experienced in many years. The attention to detail is everywhere: from the email you recieve days before asking for your pillow preference to the personal attention you receive each time you cross the lounge area.
Without any doubt I will return to the 41 on my next trip to London. One interesting detail: most of the guests were savy Tripadvisor users.

  • Stayed July 2011, travelled on business
    • Value
    • Sleep Quality
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
4 Thank Sariano
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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London
Level Contributor
51 reviews
14 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 55 helpful votes
Reviewed 3 July 2011

We have stayed in many hotels and this one is now in our top 5. Room was fantastic, had everything and more to make stay just perfect. Hotel staff were smart, friendly and couldnt do enough to help. Will definately visit again. 5* without a doubt.

  • Stayed July 2011, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Sleep Quality
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    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank Snoopyandfrenchie
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Adelaide
Level Contributor
42 reviews
14 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 18 helpful votes
Reviewed 3 July 2011

Extravagant and expensive, but the attentive staff, comfortable room and great location made it worthwhile. And we're going back next year!

  • Stayed January 2011, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Sleep Quality
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank AnthonyCG
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Cincinnati, Ohio
Level Contributor
20 reviews
8 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
Reviewed 1 July 2011

The service begins at the door with a quick and friendly check in. The room was not large, but had every amenity and some. The shower was especially wonderful.

The biggest reason my husband and I loved this hotel was the service. From making excellent dining suggestions and reservations, to drinks and canapés in the gathering room, every request was met with a smile and prompt attention.

  • Stayed June 2011
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
3 Thank Love2GoAnywhere
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Dallas, Texas
Level Contributor
4 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
Reviewed 30 June 2011

We stayed at Hotel 41 for six nights. The location is ideal for touring London. However, the hotel didn't seem to warrant the price. The rooms were nice, but not what I have experienced at other five star locations. The service depended upon who was on duty. The concierge did a nice job securing tickets, however, some of the other staff was slow to respond to requests, if at all. Nice hotel, but not sure it warrants five stars.

  • Stayed June 2011, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Sleep Quality
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
4 Thank afenn2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
MalcolmHendry, General Manager at Hotel 41, responded to this review, 5 July 2011
Thank you for taking the time to post your review of 41 on Tripadvisor. I am most grateful for your feedback, which is such a valuable source of information for me, regardless of whether it is good or bad, and helps me monitor the service we provide.

I was disappointed to read of the service inconsistencies you encountered during your stay with us. Here at 41, we pride ourselves on the calibre of our staff and provide them with continuous training, which makes it all the more disappointing to hear that you felt the level of service depended on who was on duty. Please accept my sincere apologies for not having delivered an exceptional experience and rest assured that I have addressed this feedback with my team here.

I do hope that the above did not detract too much from an otherwise enjoyable stay and that I will have the opportunity of welcoming you back to 41 in person in the not too distant future.

Yours sincerely,

Malcolm Hendry
General Manager
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Sudbury, Suffolk
Level Contributor
7 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 34 helpful votes
Reviewed 27 June 2011

Can't fault this hotel in any way. Fantastic service from all members of staff. Clean, inviting room. Breakfast was excellent. It was certainly the little touches that made this hotel stand out from the rest. Expensive but well worth it for a perfect weekend stay in the best city in the world. Just down the road from Buckingham Palace and within walking distance of most major attractions. Will definitely return.

Helpful?
3 Thank splumb11
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
San Rafael, California
Level Contributor
200 reviews
102 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1,521 helpful votes
Reviewed 23 June 2011

Things that make you go hmmmmm. Kinda scratching my head at the number 2 spot this hotel snagged on TripAdvisor. Oh well... here is my experience.

First of all we arrived after we booked short notice on their hotel website. We originally had booked at the new St. Pancras because we were coming in by EuroStar train and changed plans to come into Gatwik by plane instead. We caught the Gatwik express train from there and it landed us about 3 blocks from Hotel 41. Loved that.

So about the hotel... Let me break it down into the good; the bad and the ugly.

THE GOOD:

The location was fabulous. That is the main reason we picked this hotel and why we changed hotels. It is almost right across the street from Buckingham Palace. The part of the Palace where they keep the horses is right across the street. It is called the Royal Mews. For us, that made it worth staying there. It also was only a short walk to all kinds of other historical attractions including Westminster Abby; Big Ben and Trafalgar Square and more. We loved the location. To the right was all of this and to the left were some great British Pubs with load of character and charm. Also just a few doors away were several mini grocery marts so we were able to easily restock baby supplies.

More good stuff... the hotel is decorated really cute. An interior designer went to town with it. Fabric wall coverings of every pattern lots of fun patterns everywhere really. I liked all the unique details and plentiful amenities in the rooms. They had many extras that you don't find in most hotels. I loved the towel warmer bars.

The room was set up nicely with a candle lit in the bathroom when we arrived in our room. We also had some welcome goodies waiting for us.

The beds were very comfortable.

In general the welcome was pleasant and they were gracious about the fact that we had little ones with us. I had emailed the hotel in advance to let them know that we had little ones, even though we booked a room that was really for 2 people, but I never got a reply email. That may have been because we booked only a few days prior to our arrival.

Anyhoo... they were gracious about the fact we had kids with us and brought an extra bed into the room. We were grateful for that.

On the second night there, we also received cute little baby slippers for our wee ones. That was over the top. Reminded me of our stays at Four Seasons.

They were very good at details of amenities with the turn-down; milk and cookies, bath salts, and on and on.

All that stuff was very good. They do try really hard here.

Where it falls apart for me is the lack of "real" staff. I'll explain this in more detail below.

The Bad:

This hotel really is the top floor of their sister hotel; The Ruben's at The Palace; which has an entrance next door. The hotel next door, although as staff at 41 pointed out is only 4 star seemed more like a "real" hotel then The 41. Hope that all makes sense. If it sounds confusing, just imagine being there. It was odd and that is being kind.

You enter into a tiny foyer with a small desk smashed up against the wall. I thought we were in the wrong place when we walked in. But before I could tell my husband we must have entered the wrong door the man at the desk was whisking us up some stairs, storing our strollers in a closet near the elevator and leading us into the tiny elevator. My 7 year old son immediately notice the lack of buttons on the wall. Only one floor and it's number 5. Hmmmm. He asked why and the man replied, we are "special here at The 41 and you are V.I.P., do you know what that means?". Of course my kids being slightly spoiled replied "Yes, we are very important people." Oh my. By the time we got upstairs and out of the elevator we were led down a series of very narrow hall ways. My head was spinning. We were led to the "parlor room." At this point, I was thinking, this was all a new experience and good for my children. It was charming. But weird too. More about that in a minute. We were offered chairs to sit in as we registered ourselves and were given room keys. The children were offered chocolate and we were offered drinks. Check in was swift and we were led again through a maze really of narrow hallways to our room. Upon entering the room it was very stuffy, no air-conditioning turned on a bit claustrophobic feeling, yet kind of charming all at the same time. Our bags were brought up and husband started to unpack. "Wait!" Let me go back and see if we can get a bigger room, we were told the only room that they had available that was bigger was a split level. So I took a peek. This was not good for small children either, split level? It was more like a 2 story room. But not spacious. Glad we didn't book this one, I almost did and would have been really upset with it. So back to the room, after a second request someone finally came to show us how the air-conditioning was turned on and we unpacked and settled into our room ... now here is where The Ugly starts...

The Ugly:

I am a clean freak and a bit of a germaphobic. And I know obviously there are going to be germs, but when I went to dry my hands I grabbed a neatly folded wash cloth and to my abhorrence there was bright pink lip stick on the underside of it. Yuck!

My guess is housekeeping didn't change out all the towels and assumed it was clean because it was neatly folded on the shelf. Did I say yuck already? Well, double yuck. I was not happy. What else isn't clean I had to ask myself. Sure enough I found another sign the room wasn't thoroughly cleaned. Near the phone was a letter, I peeked at it and it was a note from the manager, but not for us; it was for a previous guest. The note was an apology for some mishaps and an offer of a bottle of champagne. I looked for the bottle of champagne. LOL. Not there, just the note.

Also, our toilet seat was scuffed and worn and the toilet didn't flush very well; and the sink drained very slowly. The towel bar burned my son when he backed into it. There was too much clutter of trinkets and chatskis so it was hard to find your own things that you set down.

Anyway, the first day I mustered my way around the maze of hall ways to the reception desk and asked the very attactive young girl sitting there if she was the concierge. Hoping that if she wasn't she would surely direct me to him or her. She didn't answer that she was she simply said she could help me. I told her since we only had a few days in London we wanted to hit the best historical points for our kids. I explained that it had been years since my last visit and I needed help.

She pulled out a map. The kind that already has all the main points starred. She proceed to circle the starred points ....oh my. I was hoping for a little insider info. Nope. None available. I asked the best way to get around and she said, "You can walk or take the Underground Tube." She circled that too. Still no special hints of any kind. She did remind me that Westminster was where "The Wedding" was. OK great. That was it. BTW... we found lots that she failed to mention including the fabulous theater district and we caught the second opening night of "Shrek the Musical". We were lucky to find this on our own as it was nearly sold out.

Also on our own we learned about a great tour bus called The Original Tour. A double decker red bus, that you can hop on and off of for 24 hours. We loved it.

Why didn't our hotel tell us about this? There was an Original Tour bus stop less than a block from the hotel. Why didn't our concierge tell us this? The answer to why; my dears is this is not a 5 star hotel. The girl was not a real concierge. And the man who let us in was not a real door man, I never saw him again, certainly not at the door, we were locked out at night and had to ring and give our hotel number to enter the door with a buzz in.


And when I woke up early to check my reservation details the man who popped out of the kitchen was not really the night manager. Or was he? Why was he preparing breakfast? And why did he go from the computer at the desk right back to the kitchen food, I didn't see him wash his hands. Strange stuff. IF this hotel was billed as a B&B fine. You would expect this kind of stuff and it would be charming. But when you expect a 5 star it is not charming. It is weird. I mentioned that the hotel felt like a B&B to the chef, I mean night manager, but I said it in the nicest way, defensive he retorted, "oh no, this is a 5 star boutique hotel. Blah blah blah...."

Also, the "business center" was open up a few steep stairs in the "parlor" and the ceiling is really low. A tall man or woman might have more trouble, hence the signs to watch your head. I almost tripped down the steep stairs but I caught myself.

On the day we were checking out we called for a taxi ourselves. Only because we met a nice driver the night before and he told us that the rate to the Heahrow airport was approximately 55 pounds. Odd. Our hotel quoted us 120 pounds. Hmmmm. What was that all about. Maybe I misunderstood the woman at the desk. I called again, and she repeated that they would be happy to arrange a taxi to the Heathrow airport for slightly more than 120 pounds. She had an exact number but I can't recall it. It's buried in notes somewhere. I think she actually said 122.60 but let's be safe and call it 120.

Surely the taxi cab driver was wrong... nope. Our fair to the airport was just under 60 pounds and that was in traffic in the rain.

Lastly ugly detail. We received a call that our taxi was waiting for us from the girl at the downstairs desk. I asked her to double check the drivers name as I had just talked to his partner and he said he was a ways a way. She huffed in my ear and said something like; "But it's raining outside, I guess."; and then she told me she would call me back, we asked for some help with our bags.

Worried that the taxi was waiting for us, as time went on with out a call back and no help with the bags, we gathered ourselves and hurried downstairs.

What happened next was really appalling. She scolded me. She said; "I told you I would call you back!, the taxi was for M. Brady not M. Bradley!"

Are you kidding me? Unbelievable. I could use a bunch of other words here but I can't if you know what I mean.

My family went upstairs and two men were already cleaning the room. They were really confused when we explained what happened. I am guessing they may not have spoken English but they got it that we needed the room still and they left.

I went back downstairs to check out and again the woman annoyed said that check out was upstairs. This is the point where I decided that this is really not a hotel, it's a comedy. Only at the time it was soooo not funny. So back upstairs I went and sat down to check out. A woman sat in the desk to check me out she handed me over my bill. I noticed that it was one pound over the correct amount. I asked what the discrepancy was. She replied that it was a "donation". I felt like asking if it was a donation for better trained staff, but I bit my tongue. She took back the bill and redid it. How odd is that? She didn't ask if I wanted to make a donation, just added it to the bill. A pound donation to every bill could really add up. There was a brochure under the bill, I suppose it described the charity. Believe me, we give to charities, but this is just odd, not to ask first; just add it to the bill without a word about it.

Then another woman came and hovered over me. She asked me how my stay was. She didn't introduce herself. I asked if she was the manager and she said she was. I explained the fiasco and the rudeness of the treatment by the girl downstairs. She apologized and explained that she was new. Whatever.

Before I got back to my home I received an apology letter via email for the rude treatment regarding the taxi mix up. I didn't even mention all the other details listed here. I was offered a room upgrade and the infamous bottle of champagne on my next visit.

Things that make you go "Hmmmm."

My tip is this is an OK place to stay; but now you know what to really expect. I however will not be back but I might check out the other part of the hotel; next door called The Rubens at the Palace.

If you thought this review was helpful please check that little box that says so. I love tying these reviews, I love reading them too. I am also writing a book about tips for traveling with young children watch out for that sometime next year. Thanks! P.S. Sorry for any typos, I have to run, I have gotten a bit carried away with my typing and have other things to do. P.P.S. London was fabulous, our best stay ever! Loved it! Cheers!

  • Stayed June 2011, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Sleep Quality
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
72 Thank MelissaBradley
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
MalcolmHendry, General Manager at Hotel 41, responded to this review, 29 June 2011
Thank you for taking the time to post your review of 41 on Tripadvisor. I am most grateful for your feedback, which is such a valuable source of information for me, regardless of whether it is good or bad, and helps me monitor the service we provide.

I was most concerned to read that you were dissatisfied with your stay at 41 and have since addressed the issues you raised with my team here at 41. I am aware that you did bring the elements of your stay to our attention whilst with us and know that my Resident Manager spent some time discussing and attending to these with you during your stay. Here at 41 we receive so many positive comments on our staff and service that it is disappointing to hear that we have let ourselves down on this occasion. Whilst I can only apologise for your disappointment, please accept my assurance that I have spent time with my team here and have reviewed the specific points you raised.

I am very sorry that your experience was not as positive as that of others on this site but thank you for sharing this with us and highlighting areas where improvement may be found.

Yours sincerely,

Malcolm Hendry
General Manager
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Hotel 41

Property: Hotel 41
Address: 41 Buckingham Palace Road, London SW1W 0PS, England
Phone Number:
Region: United Kingdom > England > London > Westminster
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Centre with Internet Access Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Room Service Suites
Hotel Style:
#1 Luxury Hotel in London
#1 Romantic Hotel in London
#1 Family Hotel in London
#6 Business Hotel in London
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££££
Hotel Class:5 star — Hotel 41 5*
Number of rooms: 30
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Luxury hotel with club like atmosphere & 21st century business technology; near Buckingham Palace & Westend theatre. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
41 Hotel London

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