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“I cannot recommend this hotel enough a hidden gem!!” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Rafayel on the Left Bank - Hotel & Spa

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Rafayel on the Left Bank - Hotel & Spa
5.0 of 5 Hotel   |   34 Lombard Road | Falcon Wharf, London SW11 3RF, England (Clapham / Battersea )   |  
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Hotel amenities
Ranked #174 of 1,065 Hotels in London
UK
Top Contributor
318 reviews 318 reviews
92 hotel reviews
Reviews in 120 cities Reviews in 120 cities
183 helpful votes 183 helpful votes
“I cannot recommend this hotel enough a hidden gem!!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 22, 2010

My partner and I stayed at the Rafayel in early August 2010. I booked two nights and contacted the hotel and asked if they could do anything to make it special as it was my mans 40th birthday. I was stunned when they upgraded our room, provided beautiful cup cakes wine and a card plus a discount in the restaurant. So impressed was I that I booked a further night.
The staff are exceptional, the rooms are big, luxuriously fitted with thick carpets, multi jet shower and one of the most comfortable beds I've ever stayed in. The entertainment system was state of the art and the view was whilst not brilliant better than many I have seen in London.
The only thing which lets the hotel down a little is the location in that you aren't close to an underground but there is a free shuttle service which takes you to the overground station so it's no hardship.
The restaurant was a bit slow and the vegetarian options were very limited. My partner had a beautiful steak and still talks about it now.
I would definitely go back to this hotel and have recommended it to my friends. I would love to stay there again!!

  • Stayed August 2010, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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Rating summary
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Location
    4 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
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Sligo, Ireland
Senior Contributor
32 reviews 32 reviews
15 hotel reviews
Reviews in 18 cities Reviews in 18 cities
19 helpful votes 19 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 22, 2010

First off the slight negatives - The location of the hotel is a little out of the way, though Victoria is easily reachable by bus from a stop directly outside the hotel. The shuttle service to clapham junction is also extremely helpful and quick in our limited experience.
The service is not quite 5*, though very nearly (the staff are very helpful if not entirely competent E.G. Our air conditioning did not work very well and despite a couple of tries the problems were never sorted.)

Now the positives - The cost - equivelent hotels in central London could be as much at 2-3 times the price.
This hotel has a beautiful setting on the banks of the Thames (despite the flats to the rear).
The views from the restaurant are excellent and the quality and value of the food on offer is difficult to beat.
The rooms are large and well appointed.

All in all a great offering in an up and coming part of the city. If the location suits book it!

  • Stayed November 2010, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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London, United Kingdom
1 review
4 of 5 stars Reviewed November 20, 2010

We stayed on a Friday night during November and we weren’t disappointed.

Although the Hotel makes it very clear on the website the ease of getting there, the location was still a slight concern before we arrived, but frankly it was as easy as the website claims if not easier so all good. We didn’t take advantage of the hotel shuttle on arrival and chose to walk from Clapham junction which took about 10 minutes and found the hotel entrance quite easily.

The check-in experience was quick and easy and the staff courteous and welcoming although I did find the lobby/check-in area was slightly cluttered and confusing.
Beyond the lobby the hotel was very clean and well signed, and the room was beautiful. It looked like the picture which is all you can ask really, the room was stylish, the bed was very comfortable, the bathroom spacious and the view beautiful.

We ordered room service after midnight and only cold sandwiches were available which was slightly disappointing but having said that for sandwiches they were very nice. We had breakfast in bed and although it wasn’t exactly what we ordered it arrived in good time and was great.

Checking out was easy and quick and we asked about the shuttle service to Clapham common and were written on to a list, told it would leave in about 20 mins and asked to wait in reception and all seemed fine. However to cut a long story short the shuttle doesn’t seem to have been very well thought through, it only carries 4 people and luggage, and there were 6 booked onto our shuttle... and we were going to different stations which the driver didn’t seem to think should be happening.

I don’t mean to be harsh here but i didn’t think the driver we had was a particularly good advert for the hotel, i must say he was never rude or unpleasant but his driving style didn’t make it comfortable for passengers and frankly on a number of occasions his driving was pretty dangerous!

So in summary, the price was fair, the room was big and well designed, the food was great and the staff were polite and helpful. A few very minor things need ironing out in the organisation but once that’s done you’ve got a 5 star hotel! We hope to come back!

  • Stayed November 2010, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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Aberdeen, United Kingdom
1 review
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 17, 2010

My partner and I have just recently had a trip to London and stayed in this hotel. The service was great and staff were very polite and would help you with any problems that you had. If you neeed anything you could phone reception and they would do their best to cater for you. The room was lovely and very spacious.
Location was great with the complementary service to near tube and train stations which meant it would take no time at all to get into the city centre, this also gave us a chance to meet other guests staying in the hotel.
We also visited the restaurant a couple of times with the food being excellent and the service was very quick. we were delighted with our stay and hope to return soon.

  • Stayed November 2010, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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Birmingham, United Kingdom
1 review
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 17, 2010

We came to stay at Hotel Rafayel for two nights for a mini get away to completely indulge and forget about work and to just enjoy ourselves. We got more than that at Hotel Rafayel. The minute we stepped out of the cab someone was there to collect our bags and he was an absolute gentleman - every single member of staff we met went out of their way to ensure everything was as we wanted - we were genuinely treated like royalty. The rooms were superbly decorated and so spacious - the worst thing about London hotels is the space - there simply isn't any space in many of them, but these rooms were wonderfully spacious with a little entrance way and a MORE than big enough ensuite bathroom. The hotel also has a wonderful bar and restaurant with a fantastic view of the Thames - the bar staff and restaurant staff again were superb; everyone was so friendly and welcoming. The food was exquisite and great value.
The spa and gym were also wonderful, it was perfect to relax in the spa and the gym was more than what I expected from a hotel. There are also treatments available for a reasonable price that are definitely worth indulging in.
The location of this hotel is perfect - you are about 15 mins from central and the max it would take u to get anywhere worth seeing in London would be half an hour - the hotel actually provides a shuttle service to and from the nearest tube station Clapham Common, which we found really handy as otherwise it's at least £10 in a taxi to the station.
All in all, in particular as someone who regularly uses hotels, I can genuinely say this hotel was the best hotel I have ever stayed at - in England and out of England. A lot of places can have nice rooms but then they lack a spa or a nice restaurant or not very accessible location wise - but this hotel has EVERYTHING. The service by far was the best I have ever experienced, in particular Errol and Ali were fantastic, but absolutely everyone there was fabulous and we will DEFINITELY be coming back! I have already recommended it to friends and will keep doing so! Keep up the great work!
Yasmin, Birmingham

  • Stayed November 2010, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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Groton, Massachusetts
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 16, 2010

I recently went to London on a business trip for one week and had the pleasure of staying at the Hotel Rafayel in Battersea.

Prior to my stay at the Rafayel, my biggest concern about staying in Battersea was my ability to get into London for appointments easily and without inconvenience or delay. Having been to London on prior occasions I knew that location can be a friend to the business traveler who will be taking appointments in various parts of London.

When I inquired with The Rafayel about this concern they were quite confident that I would not be inconvenienced by the location and reassured me that their shuttle service to both Clapham Junction (overground train station) and Clapham Common (underground tube station) would be accessible and reliable. This was certainly the case for me. All I needed to do was book the time I would need to leave the hotel for appointments and the shuttle service was ready to take me on my way..

For me, this was of paramount importance as I was in meetings the whole week I stayed in London. The fastest way to get around London is definitely by Tube so once you're in the system you're on your way.

Other pluses about the hotel - price, luxury, "green environment", service, and restaurant. The hotel provided a great value for the price compared with other hotels I looked at in London, no question here. I stayed in the Yangtze room which had a view overlooking the Thames, a nice touch. A comfy bed and large bathroom were highlights for me and a wonderful shower to relax in at the end of a long day. I especially appreciated the cleanliness of my room too. I could look forward to returning to my hotel each evening. Additionally, the hotel is one of a few "Green" approved luxury hotels.

The Banyon restaurant was also a plesure to frequent as I had breakfast each morning there - a full english buffet which was wonderful. I also ate there for dinner one evening and had the best meal of my stay in London.

Finally, but certainly not least important was the service the Hotel provided. My trip was business related and therefore I had quite a few special requiests for the staff. They were all very helpful and responsive. I couldn't have been happier with the level of service they provided.

When I return to London I will certainly be staying at the Rafayel again.

  • Stayed November 2010, traveled on business
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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St. Helier, United Kingdom
Senior Reviewer
10 reviews 10 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed November 13, 2010

We stayed at the Rafayel at the end of October whilst visiting family. This hotel has some really good points but I fell is let down by management of the staff.

Good points:

Bedrooms - large, very modern rooms with some lovely extras - TV in bathroom (although this didn't work during our stay), free wifi, the most comfortable bed I have slept in, mini bar, room safe etc My requests made at the time of booking were all actioned which was also pleasing.

Shuttle buses - these go every half an hour to Clapham common or Junction and are very handy. The driver was also really nice.

General decor - just to me taste (apart from the large decorative chain hanging from the ceiling in reception), very modern, nicley appointed, stylish.

Food - we only ate once in the restaurant but the views were fantastic, they were offering 50% off so very good value and the food was really nice as well.

The cocktails were very good and well priced and the barman was nice.

Bad points:

No one seems to manage the staff here:

There were members of staff smoking at the front entrance in uniform which does not give a good impression.

Whilst eating lunch a painter started painting a wall next to us which I would not expect to see in a cafe let alone this restaurant. Note to maintenance department - paint fumes whilst eating are not pleasant.

There were constantly workmen everywhere by the front entrance and reception. Although this didn't really effect our stay it does give a bad first impression for guests arriving.

1 receptionist was lovely but I cannot remeber her name, the others gave the impression that we were disturbing them every time we came to the desk.

The information about the hotel in the rooms could have been more detailed.

In all it was a pleasant stay and I would return so perhaps I am being picky with the negative points I recorded. However, if the same attention to detail was given to the levels of service and staff customer care training as it has with the decor and and styling this hotel really would be excellent.

  • Stayed October 2010, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
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Rafayel, Manager at Rafayel on the Left Bank - Hotel & Spa, responded to this review, November 23, 2010
Dear guest,

Thank you for your valuable review and pointing out our weaknesses. We are conscious of our staff’s limitations and continue to train them diligently. Being equal-opportunity employers and adhering to a conscientious social policy, we have taken on board some staff who are struggling to cope with the demands of the hospitality industry, which sometimes leads to certain shortcomings to which we admit. Moreover, because of our special prices and packages, we are compelled to make certain adjustments and give opportunities to ambitious determined people looking to make a positive career change. This is the reason we have implemented continuous training programmes in health and safety, first aid, guest relations etc. to improve the level of services.

Once again, we appreciate your valuable input. It is reviews like yours that serve as further impetus to enhance the quality of our establishment.

We look forward to your continued patronage.

Kind regards,

Management
Hotel Rafayel
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Rafayel on the Left Bank - Hotel & Spa

Address: 34 Lombard Road | Falcon Wharf, London SW11 3RF, England
Phone Number:
Location: United Kingdom > England > London > Clapham / Battersea 
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Suites Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#50 Business Hotel in London
#74 Best Value Hotel in London
#129 Luxury Hotel in London
#165 Family Hotel in London
#202 Romantic Hotel in London
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:5 star — Rafayel on the Left Bank - Hotel & Spa 5*
Number of rooms: 65
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Rafayel on the Left Bank boasts 65 designer "smart" rooms, champagne bar, riverside restaurant and conference facilities, exhibition spaces as well as the latest spa and beauty treatments and gym. Rafayel is one of the world's most advanced luxury green hotels and proves that hotels can dramatically reduce their carbon emission output without compromising on five-star luxury, quality or comfort. Located on the River Thames at the heart of London's most dynamic riverside development, with sweeping views across to Chelsea Harbour, Rafayel is minutes from the shopping areas of Sloane Square and Knightsbridge and is close to Victoria Station and London's major attractions. Rafayel provides a free shuttle service to and from Clapham Junction and Clapham Common on Northern line every 30 minutes from 7.30 AM to 10.00 PM. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Rafayel On The Left Bank Hotel London
Rafayel On The Left Bank - Hotel And Spa
Rafayel On The Left Bank - Hotel & Spa London, England

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