To choose to stay at a hotel that has been open for only 1 day is quite a risk. Nevertheless, I decided to risk it with my stay at the Intercontinental Westminster because the hotel was just blocks away from Buckingham Palace, Westminster Abbey, and a number of other key London tourist sites, yet it was a small, intimate hotel located in a quiet area not totally overwhelmed with tourists.
It turned out to be an exceptional decision. Before the hotel was officially open, I sent an email to the general concierge email address with some questions and requests for my stay. The very next day the head concierge, Ashley Harman, took the time to call me personally. He said “it’s so much better just to reach out and make the personal connection.” He listened carefully to my questions and requests for input, subsequently making fabulous recommendations and all of the necessary reservations. He not only arranged for an exclusive tour of Buckingham Palace, he put me in touch with a guide service that arranged a private tour of Leeds Castle. When we arrived at Leeds, we literally had the caste and the grounds completely to ourselves for the first 2 hours before it opened to the public. Ashley even sent one of his staff members to the vicar’s office at Westminster Abbey on our behalf to confirm the protocol for attending the midnight mass on Christmas Eve.
Upon our arrival, it was as if the entire staff already knew who we were. The fact that I remember all of their names including Adrian, Raphael, and Zsolt of the concierge staff and Julius, Liang, and Giorgia of the front end staff says a lot about how they engaged us, and were so personally helpful and attentive to us during our stay. For example, I inquired whether the hotel could bring up a humidifier to my room, but being so new, they did not have one. The next thing I knew the staff went out and purchased one. Giorgia was there to greet us when we arrived and she was there at the front desk at 6am the day we checked out. Based on her demeanor, it was clear that she (and all the staff at the hotel) truly cared about the quality of our stay and genuinely wanted to receive any and all feedback on how we could help them improve. It was a pleasure staying at the InterContinental London Westminster. I would recommend it without reservation.
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