I almost liked the Montana. It's got a great Kensington location, right next to Gloucester Road tube and about 600 yards from the Victoria & Albert. It's also near coffee shops and quite a good burger joint, and close by is a French independent cinema, the Cine Lumiere at the Institut français du Royaume-Uni (where I saw the excellent Venus In Fur the night I stayed at Montana).
I booked a single room so can only speak about those, or more accurately, my own. At 69 quid a pop it's not cheap, but with London hotel prices spirally fast out of control for about half the population of the UK -I say that with all due bitterness - cheap hotel accommodation in London is disappearing over the horizon. The room was just about big enough to swing a cat but I have to say, the hotel used the space well. There was a fridge, a cupboard with a safe, a desk, a TV and a small but comfortable enough bed. And a hair dryer and a window.
Some may complain about traffic noise, and for sure, the window could have had another layer of glazing over it, but this is, after all, one of the centres of this capital city we're talking about, not a rural retreat.
My complaint was about breakfast. If the proprietor(s) is or are reading this, I almost feel like congratulating you on producing one of the worst breakfast experiences I have ever encountered. Presented in a lovely room, the adjacent Indian restaurant of lunch and evening-time (where residents receive 20% discount), it is an event all about profit-maximisation: the choice stood when I was there at: 3 cheap cereals, a couple of fruit juices, water, some basic fruit pieces out of a tin, some carton yogurt, toast, and the worst coffee I have ever been presented with in a hotel or b and b for many years. For nearly £7 EXTRA you can treat yourself to a mediocre looking English fried breakfast. This is the first time in Britain that I have ever been asked to pay extra for cooked food at breakfast. Pretty incredible. I gave it a miss on the grounds of expense, quality and principle.
A word about coffee and toast and the pride of the nation. The dee-redful quality of the most important drink of the day means I won't be staying here again. It tasted nothing like coffee - I managed two sips and left the rest. Toast. It is a feature of the worst kind of Brit hotel to dump a rack of underdone toast on your table, using the cheapest loaf of disgusting nutrient-free white bread than can be sourced. This, like the coffee, is totally unacceptable, and not just because I was three spoonfuls into a bowl of muesli when it arrived. I loathe the idea of non-UK tourists thinking that this is typical British food. It used to be 40 years ago, but most of the country has moved on. Sadly, not the Montana.
To speak more positively, the staff were very helpful and friendly, the lift worked, the room and reception area was clean and decently furnished and the outside of the hotel looks very nice. But overall, I don't want to recommend the hotel because of the attitude to breakfast. It is insulting, frankly, to be expected to eat cheap and shoddy goods and to be treated like one of a herd of cattle, a mere economic unit.
Not that the Montana need bother about a bad review like this one. It's fantastic location and for all I know, reasonable prices for foreign travellers, its frontage and clean rooms, means that it's rarely going to have a worrying amount of spare rooms of a night.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Montana Hotel is a unique 55-room boutique hotel situated in the heart of Kensington, Knightsbridge and Chelsea. The Montana perfectly blends Victorian architecture and traditional English ambience with contemporary touches, ensuring you a unique travel experience in Kensington, one of the world’s most exclusive and fashionable neighbourhoods. Our aim is to make you feel at home, providing you an efficient four-star service and an exceptional travel experience. Recently refurbished, classic and elegant rooms combine all contemporary amenities needed, whether travelling to London for business or leisure. All rooms have their own character and personal touches, whether a large and spacious room for family travellers or a warm and cosy room for the single traveller. Luxury and comfort will await you in each of our 55 en-suite guest bedrooms. Before you settle down for a good night’s sleep, savour exquisitely presented cuisine in the hotel’s restaurant Light of India. The Light of India offers a continental breakfast and a full a la carte menu for lunch and dinner featuring the finest Indian cuisine. ... more less
- Reservation Options:
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- Also Known As:
- Montana Hotel London