London is a great place for families with young children - there is so much to see and do, but the problem for us has always been accommodation. For us, it is much easier to find accommodation which offers self-catering facilities, rather than a normal hotel. Last year, we (my wife and I, plus our then two-year old daughter) stayed in an apartment near South Kensington which was very convenient for all the museums and also for food (shopping and eating). I had planned also to stayed in the same area this time around, but the prices are prohibitive, even though we were staying in London not during a half term or school holiday, plus over 5 nights, the costs mounted up very quickly, easily towards £1000, so I decided to look further afield.
I came across this Best Western Apartment Hotel while doing extensive research and it appealed a great deal to me, and for the 5-night stay, would be half the price of those in South Kensington.
Firstly, the front/entrance of the hotel is very unassuming and you could easily drive past it and not notice it was there. It has a shop-front like appearance. In addition, the hotel entrance is on a busy high street where there are lots of shops, plenty of places to buy food of all sorts. The person at reception, Mo-in (sp?), checked us in and he made sure that we were happy with everything during our stay there. One kind gesture he made was to go up to the room and check that the keycard worked before giving it to us, which was prudent as he had to do it twice before it did work!
We stayed on the top floor in Room 303, known also as the James Bond/007 Suite as there are canvas prints hung on the wall. From the room front door, there is a long corridor which leads to the main living room/kitchenette, and along the way, to the bathroom and the bedroom. In addition, there is an outside balcony which leads to the hot tub.
The bathroom is a decent size with a bath, overhead rain forest shower, and an additional hand shower. This is ideal especially for small children, as my daughter hates showers and much prefers baths! The bedroom was okay, with all the expected amenities: queen sized bed, dressing table and wardrobe which also contained the safe and an ironing board. There is enough space in the room for my daughter's readybed to be used.
We made our own breakfast each morning, and also made dinner most evenings. As previously stated, you are spoilt for choice if you want to buy ingredients for cooking your own food, and there are also plenty of restaurants and fast food places if you are feeling lazy. There are pots and pans available, with utensils, cutlery and plates for most kinds of meals.
The area is fairly busy, even during the working week day, but we felt very safe, even at night, and with all the police sirens echoing through the streets. From our room, the noise was very minimal and we did not notice the street noise at all.
For parking, the hotel offers several spaces around the back for £20 per day, but the Witham Road Car Park is only £10 per day (£1/hour between 8am and 6pm), and is a much better choice. There are several traffic wardens prowling around, so if you are turning up by car, make sure you park in a valid place!
Getting into Central London could not be easier - there is a bus stop just metres down the street from the hotel, and it's a 5-10 minute journey to Ealing Broadway station. It's then 20-30 minutes into Central London on the tube. Ealing itself is a great place to look around and also eat out in. We took the bus in the mornings to Ealing Broadway, and walked back from there to our hotel each evening - some 20 minutes or so: a very pleasant and safe stroll back.
I do have some minor quibbles during our stay:
- we had a few problems with checking in: I had made an advanced booking and thought I had already paid in advance, but it seemed that Best Western had problems taking money from the card. Eventually this was sorted out, but from other reviews, it seems to be a common occurrence.
- the bathroom door handle does not shut the door properly, and the lock is very tedious to lock/unlock (many turns required).
- the sink plug which is operated via lever, was very fiddly to use, and could do with replacing.
- Obviously, we didn't use the hot tub as it was the middle of October, but we were slightly concerned by the ever presence of pigeons. It cannot be easy keeping the balcony clean from all the feathers and droppings.
- the WiFi signal is a bit patchy in this room, and I could only guarantee a decent strong signal when standing near the room front door. In other areas of the room, the signal fluctuated.
Overall, I am really happy to have found this place: it is convenient in terms of our needs, in travelling into central London, and also price. The staff are very friendly and made sure that we were happy with everything, and to help out with any questions. My wife and I have definitely agreed to stay here in the future.
- Also Known As:
- BEST WESTERN Maitrise Suites Apartment Hotel London, England
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- The Best Western Maitrise Suites is located in the vibrant neighborhood of West Ealing and brings the excitement of London living into the modern era. These Luxury Serviced Apartments features studios and one bedroom apartments and are the type of luxury that corporate traveller's dream of. Whether you are looking for "short stay vacation breaks" or "extended business accommodation" our facilities will offer you an attractive alternative to any London hotel. With all our apartments serviced daily, 24 hour reception and concierge and daily laundry and dry cleaning services available, we are more than able to offer you the complete corporate housing solution. All our bespoke suites are fitted with flat screen TVs, home cinema systems and free WIFI will allow you to work from the comfort of your "London home." The fully equipped fitted kitchens, with all the modern accessories mean you can have a home cooked meal or entertain friends in style. Our orthopaedic beds, with luxury Egyptian cottons sheets, are the perfect way to retire after a long day. Many of our suites come with private roof terraces to give you added space. For those travelling by car The Best Western Maitrise Suites offers onsite car parking. The Hotel is only 10 minutes from Ealing Broadway Underground Station, with District and Central Line services, has direct links into Oxford Circus, The City of London and Westminster. Heathrow Airport is less than 30 minutes drive. ... more less
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