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“OK for my two-night stay- comfortable and great location.”

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The Gainsborough Hotel
Ranked #826 of 1,072 Hotels in London
Reviewed 21 April 2014

I decided to pay a little extra for a single room with double bed, as I thought that the room would be larger than the average single size. It was fine for my purposes- enough room to move around in, comfortable bed and, above all, very quiet, as it was on the top floor. There is a lift. The decor was reasonable, if faded; there was an openable window, air conditioning (not used) and everything required. It was clean. The shower room tiles needed replacing, but everything worked satisfactorily. The continental breakfast was pretty basic, with tinned fruit and a selection of fresh pastries, plus cheap looking slices of ham and cheese. The cooked breakfast was extra on my tariff so I didn't try it. There was no fresh decaffeinated coffee available- in this day and age, there is no excuse for this. The reception and serving staff were very friendly- the person on reception was apologetic that WiFi was charged for and offered me the use of her computer for an urgent e-mail. The venue is great for Kensington, Knightsbridge, Hyde Park and the big museums, plus there are some good restaurants nearby. I managed to get a reasonably priced deal for my stay- I certainly wouldn't pay the full asking price for the standards that they offer.

Room Tip: Ask for a room on the 4th floor- very quiet.
  • Stayed: April 2014, travelled on business
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Thank Bootess
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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163 - 169 of 461 reviews

Reviewed 13 April 2014

For the first time ever, I booked a secret hotel via Expedia. They lied. I will never book a secret hotel again from any company. It will be a very long time before I book anything through Expedia.

The promise was a four-star hotel in South Kensington at a 40% discount. I booked for three nights. The price was £133 per night, breakfast being extra. This is not a four-star hotel. Since Agoda sold the same rooms for the same nights at £152, without there being any kind of special offer, my understanding of maths can't work out where the 40% discount comes from!

If you are offering a four-star hotel, on a so-called secret basis, you have to be upfront about those things which are not four-star. In 2014 no four-star hotel still charges £10 per computer per day for Wi-Fi. No four-star hotel has got away with charging £1.42 for a one-minute call to France since the 1970s. Four-star hotels do not have holes in the curtains. The curtains in four-star hotels are hung properly. Four-star hotels offer more than six hangers for a couple staying for three nights. Four-star hotels offer a choice of a double bed or two single beds to couples. Four-star hotels have quality beds and do not use the cheapest possible quality bedding. Four-star hotels have air conditioning. They do not feel uncomfortably hot even on a cool April evening. The electrical wiring in four-star hotels is immaculate. Four-star hotels have enough space for all your cases and enough space in their wardrobes for all your clothes. Four-star hotels have a proper,spacious, bathroom. They do not feature a seriously pokey shower cabinet, with no bath and with one tiny hand basin for a couple!

The location of this hotel is extremely convenient for all sorts of places, with good transport links as well. That is all the hotel has going for it. There is not the tiniest bit of style in the upstairs areas. The only way it could conceivably merit the description four-star is if the whole interior was to be gutted, at a cost of millions of pounds of course.The same space would end up providing something like two thirds of the numbers of rooms currently in use in a modern, stylish fashion.

I do not get the impression that the ownership has any intention of spending any money at all on the property, let alone that amount. Unless they do, avoid this hotel like the plague!

Room Tip: Don't stay at all!
  • Stayed: April 2014, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank bifrons
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 9 April 2014

High points on location, but the rest is a disaster and certainly not a 4 star hotel. I booked a deluxe double and was given a "suite" in the basement - could not open the only window and I really wouldn`t open it as it overlooked dusty space where the maintenance team stores unused boards.
The room was clearly dated and it looked dusty and carpets heavily stained. But the worse part was that whenever my neighbors would go to the toilet I could hear them as if they were in my room.
Definitely won`t recommend and certainly won`t book this hotel again.

  • Stayed: April 2014, travelled with friends
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Thank ClaudiaDS80
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 3 March 2014

Great location for South Kensington. Short walk to museums and RCM. Attractive building and dining room. I like the established, traditional feel. The bedding really needs updating, new pillows and duvets in all rooms instead of blankets (and mattress covers instead of blankets!). As a woman travelling on my own I felt very safe, friendly staff, good value and I will definitely be back.

Room Tip: Specify if you would like to look out on the Main Street.
  • Stayed: January 2014, travelled solo
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1  Thank Sarah H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 20 February 2014 via mobile

£88.00 without breakfast. Ok, its not a huge amount of money for central London. But its enough to expect something decent when Travelodges and the like come in at a similar price, and offer comfort and space. This hotel, while looking smart from the outside, is flogging rooms through LateRooms that fall way below acceptable in 2014. Ours was tiny, ridiculously crammed with a pathetic attempt at a shower room shoehorned into a corner. The bed was aged, creaky and torn. The paintwork was peeling. The only socket to plug in the kettle was too remote to be used with any safety. The room was way too hot and had a view over a concrete recreational ground. The Gainsborough won't give a damn about this bad review as they will have plenty of other mugs forking out to stay in this part of London. Don't be one of them.

  • Stayed: February 2014
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3  Thank David B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 9 February 2014

Stayed for 2 nights and chosen for closeness to Royal Albert Hall in view of tube strikes and concert tickets. Booked deluxe twin but on arrival got key for a double. Rang reception and complained to be answered by "you must have booked that". However it was sorted very quickly.
Decor seems somewhat dated and furniture worn. Bathroom needs updating as shower head very small and water went everywhere. Bathroom could do with air vent. TV could also do with updating.
Windows in bedroom and bathroom rattled very badly in the wind and were constantly banging. Problem solved on 2nd evening by using shower cap and sewing kit to insert in gaps!
Staff were friendly and breakfast was sufficient for what we wanted.
Great location for Royal Albert Hall and Natural History Museum with lots of places to eat as well.

  • Stayed: February 2014, travelled with family
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1  Thank AlisonLW
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 31 January 2014

Great location. No question, it's convenient and there are lots of great restaurants right there, and an Underground station a block away. The hotel was not well maintained, the air conditioners were very scary & got very hot, beds were not comfortable, linens were sketchy and not necessarily clean, plumbing was not reliable. Breakfast buffet was adequate but no more. Clearly, some serious money needs to be poured into this establishment. The staff was very friendly and tried to be helpful. However, they were powerless to resolve a reservation problem when their corporate overlords were not available in the evening. Very disappointing. Also, they charged $10/day for wifi, a little less if you paid for a week in advance, and we had to get a new password every 24 hours. Really?! Other than location, I cannot recommend The Gainsborough.

  • Stayed: July 2013, travelled with family
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1  Thank orcasmom
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about The Gainsborough Hotel

Address: 7-11 Queensberry Place | South Kensington, London SW7 2DW, England
Region: United Kingdom > England > London > South Kensington
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free Breakfast Room Service Shuttle Bus service Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#397 Luxury Hotel in London
Price Range: £91 - £184 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4 star — The Gainsborough Hotel 4*
Number of rooms: 49
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Imagine an English country home magically whisked to the most exclusive London borough, and you have The Gainsborough. Named after the celebrated artist, The Gainsborough combines the attractive style of bygone days with an easy informality. To stay here is to enjoy London of fashionable South Kensington, Harrods, the restaurants and antique markets, pubs and delightful backwaters of Chelsea and Knightsbridge. You are at the heart of the capital's culture too with great museums - Science, Natural History, the Victoria & Albert - nearby; and for music lovers, the glorious Royal Albert Hall is just minutes away. The well-stocked lounge bar is the spot for a leisurely drink or a snack from the light menu. With 24-hour room service, butlers on immediate call and a reception ever ready to meet your needs, nothing is too much for our attentive staff. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Gainsborough Hotel London

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