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“Disappointed - bland 'suite' for a botique hotel” 3 of 5 stars
Review of The Rockwell

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The Rockwell
4.0 of 5 Hotel   |   181 Cromwell Road, London SW5 0SF, England (Earls Court)   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #384 of 1,066 Hotels in London
London
Contributor
13 reviews 13 reviews
12 hotel reviews
Reviews in 13 cities Reviews in 13 cities
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
“Disappointed - bland 'suite' for a botique hotel”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed October 26, 2009

Was very disappointed to enter my 'deluxe suite' which had as much character as a Holiday Inn standard room. Expect in Holiday Inn's you get tea&coffee and bisuits at no extra cost. Unlike the Rockwell. Very bland with no character at all. No DVD player or i-pod dock and no bath. Bathroom was as small as they are in Paris-tiny! Its saving grace were the modern chic common areas & the attentive staff. Had ran out of keys so they staff had to let me in and out of my room. No compensation was offered. The breakfast- which is not included in the price is over priced for what you get. The cafes on Earls Court Road do better food & offers. It clearly has more exciting rooms as the website proves but I highly recommend you check that out before paying in advance and at the higher end price scale also as I did. If you want to spend £200+ on a 'design' hotel room in London go elsewhere. I was willing to pay for the 'wow' design factor which this room did not deliver.

  • Stayed October 2009, traveled on business
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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338 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 stars
  • Location
    4 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
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English first
Dublin
1 review
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed October 22, 2009

Never have I checked out of an establishment so utterly fuming with rage. Like a previous reviewer I was slightly taken aback when asked to pay for my stay upfront on arrival, however it was late and I didn;t want to protest so agreed without comment. We were then told that their key card system was broken and as it was a bank holiday weekend they wouldn't have it fixed until the following tuesday (after our departure) and that for the duration of our stay we would have to ask a member of staff to let us into our room - this is unacceptable for a so called 4 star establishment. However again - we decided not to complain and were brought to our room. After dumping our bags we decided to go to the bar for a drink. This hotel does not have a bar - instead drinks are served in the breakfast room from the buffet lounge, at 11 o clock the bored waitress told us she was closing but that we could bring our drinks up to our room. Grumpy we returned to our room and decided to order room service from their 24hr menu - no answer from the kitchen so we rang reception only to be told that as it was a bank holiday most staff were away for the weekend and the kitchen was closed - the mind boggles. The following day we were going to a wedding and left the hotel just before midday - we returned at around 1am to discover that our room had not been made up - when we asked reception why, again we were told it was a bank holiday etc etc - we then asked that they bring us fresh towels, they brought us up one so we had to call again and ask for more. Upon check out - despite our blatant hostility we were not asked if we had enjoyed our stay or indeed was there something wrong - the staff here are simply abysmal. This hotel is infact a glamorous B&B, its website and advertising is utterly misleading and I would never reccommend anybody to stay here

  • Stayed August 2009, traveled as a couple
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 2 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 1 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Oslo
Senior Contributor
44 reviews 44 reviews
31 hotel reviews
Reviews in 25 cities Reviews in 25 cities
29 helpful votes 29 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed September 25, 2009

I have stayed at this hotel one's before and find it nice. The bar closes at 23.00 which is kind of early. Make sure to check in early to get a good room, otherwise you risk getting a ground floor room, although they are nice when facing back jard. The room lock did not work properly, but this was a minor issue.

  • Stayed August 2009, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service

Review collected in partnership with Finn

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Chicago, Illinois
Senior Contributor
29 reviews 29 reviews
18 hotel reviews
Reviews in 17 cities Reviews in 17 cities
52 helpful votes 52 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed August 16, 2009

I've stayed in this hotel maybe 20 times in the past three years and have always come back because the service was excellent, the rooms were nice and the location was convenient to my office. While there were aspects of the hotel that I did not like, but overall my experiences were good and this had been my hotel of choice in London.

On my most recent visit of three nights, I was very disappointed to see that most of the staff I knew had left and that the level of service at the hotel had fallen into a serious decline. The poor service combined with the aging infrastructure were enough to convince me to find a new place to stay in London.

The specifics:

- When I arrived, I was told that the hotel now required payment in advance. I replied that I was unaccustomed to paying in advance for my accommodation and that if this were the policy, I would need to speak to the manager. I heard no more about this, and checked with my credit card company. Indeed, they had tried to charge me in advance for the entire stay. I find this offensive not just because this is a practice befitting the kind of place that charges by the hour, but also because it's simply unacceptable to not inform guests of such a policy and let them decide in advance whether to accept it or look elsewhere.

- The front desk person asked me to fill out all of my personal details again (home address, passport number etc.). I would think that being a small hotel would do their best to use guest loyalty to their advantage, but I was apparently wrong. They preferred to treat me anonymously, even though I'd stayed at the hotel 4 times since January of this year.

- When I asked for a luggage rack (usually in the room, but missing from mine), I was informed that the hotel didn't have them in any of the rooms and had never had such things. I found the front desk person's strident response a bit surprising. When someone from housekeeping overheard, she simply brought me the luggage rack. Rather than making up stories about the hotel, wouldn't it be easier to just ask someone?

- I ordered food in the restaurant after returning late from work on two occasions. On both occasions, the service was friendly, but the food was frankly disgusting. A simple sandwich - served on stale bread that managed to be soggy in the space of less than 10 minutes.

- A continental breakfast was included, as I had booked a package. By the time I got to the dining room, the only options were coco-pops. The fruit, bread, juice and whatever else had been set out for breakfast had run out, and guests were left standing around staring at a nearly-empty buffet. There were no staff in the dining room, and when one person appeared, she did not appear concerned that the hotel's breakfast had simply run out.

- The internet is free (thankfully) and had been reliable on other occasions. On this visit, the wireless was not working, obliging me to work at the desk with a cable. Even this service was spotty - on three occasions it went out and left me waiting to send and receive simple emails.

Other small details that I was willing to overlook on prior visits no longer seemed such small details. The television only provides four or five channels, all others require payment. The televisions themselves, purchased when flatscreens were relatively new, are now dated and tiny. The showers are in fact tiny.

When I went to check out, my bill included things that should have been covered by the package. At that point, I was simply too tired to negotiate with the hotel staff, and I asked to have the manager call me in my room. After twenty minutes, I was informed by the front desk person (who was really trying, but simply didn't know what she was doing) that the manager was on vacation and wouldn't be back for another week. Exasperated, I canceled my reservation for my return to London the next week.

The Rockwell had been my hotel of choice for three years, but after 3 days of pointlessly bad service, bad food and annoying infrastructure, I'd given up. I wish they'd bring back their experienced staff and start paying attention to details. I won't come back until they do.

Stayed August 2009, traveled on business
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HORWICH
Reviewer
5 reviews 5 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed July 27, 2009

This is a top class hotel with excellent service and food....main problem is price of breakfast...booking did not state inclusive breakfast was continental only.....fa cooked breakfast is£12.50....hotel will not deduct the £9.50 continental price but charges the full £12.50......could add significantly to bill...Did eat in restaurant in the evening and meal was of a high standard......to be recommended!Rooms were nice but a bed on a mezzanine could be a problem for older guests..also cannot watch TV in bed as TV is in very small lounge area...other couple in party had cheaper basemant room...it was large and comfy. Overall a high quality hotel.....just needs to be fairer with breakfast prices.......

  • Stayed July 2009, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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Dublin
Top Contributor
94 reviews 94 reviews
90 hotel reviews
Reviews in 42 cities Reviews in 42 cities
224 helpful votes 224 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 22, 2009

I stayed in the Rockwell for four nights during the June heatwave. With its highly effective air conditioning system and al fresco breakfasts, it was the ideal hotel in which to acclimatise to the hot weather. There's a choice of either continental or English breakfast and the food is simple and tasty. There's a walled garden/patio area and I relaxed there most mornings, reading the papers and enjoying a leisurely breakfast.

The bedroom was London-sized. But the bed was very comfortable, and - though not of the King-sized variety - it was broad enough to absorb my more than ample frame in diagonal sleep mode. I booked this hotel because it was available as a Tablet Hotel offer for £125 a night, which I thought was good value for a boutique hotel. It certaintly represented much better value that the £110 charged by Premier Inn for a night in their St Pancras/York Way auberge.

Earl's Court is the nearest tube station the hotel, a walk of about six minutes away. If you're of a budgetary frame of mind during the current recession, this is handy because there is a direct tube line from there out to Heathrow. Not everyone likes Earl's Court. But I was much taken by the wide variety of different exotic restaurants there, and the scent of some delicious curry dishes wafting temptingly on the night air.

I wasn't sure whether to award this establishment four or five stars. But, for £125 a night, I think it represents good London value for the money and - in my opinion - this hotel just shades a rating of five stars.

Stayed June 2009, traveled solo
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Exeter, Devon, UK
Top Contributor
72 reviews 72 reviews
55 hotel reviews
Reviews in 33 cities Reviews in 33 cities
55 helpful votes 55 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed July 6, 2009

My partner and I were only at the Rockwell for an overnight stay while at Wimbledon but would definitely stay there again. 5 minutes from the tube station, the hotel is chic yet warm and welcoming. The service was excellent - we were taken to our room by the porter and just generally looked after. The room was a good size and had everything one could need - flatscreen tv, good sized fridge / mini bar, power shower, extra pillows, ironing facilities - you get the picture. Our bedroom overlooked the decked area in the garden which looked like a lovely area for breakfast (so long as it's not raining!).

  • Stayed June 2009, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about The Rockwell

Address: 181 Cromwell Road, London SW5 0SF, England
Location: United Kingdom > England > London > Earls Court
Amenities:
Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Restaurant Room Service Suites
Hotel Style:
#217 Business Hotel in London
#249 Luxury Hotel in London
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:4 star — The Rockwell 4*
Number of rooms: 40
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The Rockwell is an independent hotel with an emphasis on understated contemporary style, impeccable levels of personal service and attention to detail. Each of the forty rooms has been crafted to create a relaxed atmosphere, whilst retaining an individual character which combines English tradition with contemporary styling. In addition to our well appointed bedrooms, we offer guests the use of generous spaces for eating, drinking and relaxing, including a large south facing landscaped garden. Whether you are visiting Kensington for business or pleasure, many of London's best attractions are on our doorstep including Earls Court, Harrods, the Royal Albert Hall, the Natural History Museum, the Science Museum as well as the shopping areas of Knightsbridge and Chelsea. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
The Rockwell Hotel London
Rockwell Hotel London
Rockwell London
The Rockwell London, England

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