After having flights cancelled to fly home for Christmas, my boyfriend and I checked in to the hotel for our Christmas day meal and stay.
The front of house manager greeted us warmly and we were shown to our room. I was slightly disappointed however as we were told given it was Christmas and quite empty we would be upgraded. While the room was in the Charlotte Street hotel style and comfort, it was still rather small with a view of a next door building and small (and slightly outdated) bathroom. The covering around the bed also had stains and was quite worn, not what I’d hoped for.
We then headed down for our meal booked under a set price and the Christmas package and the time booked in days in advance.
While other groups were all decked out in hats from their crackers on tables, we had nothing Christmassy to speak of on ours! Our waiter arrived and presented us with the standard dinner menu and left us. We grabbed him again to ask for the actual Christmas day menu, I explained I was vegetarian so definitely wanted the special veggie Christmas meal! He then suggested I have a salad from the main menu, as an example of the vegetarian offering?! To suggest a customer, vegetarian or not, would be happy with a salad on Christmas day was quite thoughtless and then we again and to clarify we had booked for the Christmas day menu (funny that, as it was Christmas day!) and we would like this. He then told us that as we were dining towards the end of the day (the time we had booked) he was not sure if the chef would still allow us to eat of the Christmas menu but would check.
In our view, as we had booked for this specific under the Christmas package, we should have been lead to a table, also decorated in a festive way, presented with the correct menu and left to decide. To have to have this discussion and query as we sat down for Christmas day should not have happened, especially when the meal was £95 a head!
The other waiters who served us were always topping our wine up and were very attentive and friendly which a great. However the further disappointment came with my actual meal. The vegetarian option was actually suitable for a vegan in that it was half a butternut squash, with a red pepper on top and some breadcrumbs. The entire thing took up a fifth of my plate! It was dry and bland, there was no sauce/gravy and just a few vegetables in bowls for both my partner and I to share. I’d be disappointed with this for a normal work day lunch, let alone a well regarded boutique hotel on Christmas day. It was clear veggies are completely low on their list of priorities as absolutely no thought went in to also creating a hearty, filling, delicious Christmas meal for me.
We then went back to our room and ordered a DVD through room service from their DVD library. What we actually received was just disc 2 of 2, so the 2nd part of Lord of the Rings, with about 1/1/2 hours of the film missing!
The next morning we waited for our breakfast ordered the evening before.
Surprise surprise: no toast as ordered and despite ticking a fry up option with about 6 different components, I received a few mushrooms and 2 runny fried eggs (Id requested easy over!). We then had a further interruption with room service then arriving with the toast they and forgotten and again when we had asked for the correct breakfast as ordered. 1 measly veggie sausage had been plonked on my plate, that when cut in the middle was still raw, and my eggs left as they were, not easy over as requested yet again! I didn’t eat any of it.
So on Boxing Day when we hoped to relax in our room and be served breakfast as ordered, we had 3 different interruptions bringing the food (not great when sat in dressing gown!) and even after notifying about the order, never received the breakfast we ordered.
At check out we mentioned this, and again the front of house manger was charming, refunded my meal the night before and was quite apologetic. However this won’t make up for a Christmas stay that was lacking in a festive spirit, should have gone comely smoothly (given the hotel wasn’t near full) but was littered with issues and queries and requests just not being fulfilled. Even with my meal being taken off, the entire 1 night stay cost us £500, which we both felt we could have spent elsewhere and had a far more pleasant experience. The staff are friendly and helpful but I felt our stay was a disappointment, and I hope the issues, specifically with the food, are put to the chef.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Charlotte Street Hotel is situated in the media neighbourhood just north of Soho. It is a minute's walk from leafy Soho Square and the theatre district, within easy reach of the financial centre and is surrounded by some of London's best bars, restaurants and cafes. Designer Kit Kemp has used a 'Bloomsbury Group' theme throughout the hotel which features original art from the period and a mural in the brasserie reflecting scenes of 'contemporary London life'. ... more less
- Reservation Options:
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- Also Known As:
- Charlotte Street London
- Hotel Charlotte Street