We love B&Bs. This is not a B&B in the English sense - you know the type - small, cozy, a few rooms and getting to know the family that runs the home away from home. This is a budget hotel, which provide breakfast. But then again, they DO put 'hotel' in their name.
Bloomsbury is quite lovely a section of town. The hotel is 2 minutes from Russell Square station. Location is ideal!!! Pret a manger nearby, three leafy green parks, British Museum about 10 minutes. Pubs, cafes, everything you can want.
Also, the staff are incredible. Hardworking is probably too soft a word for it. The ladies who clean - the staff must love the owners because its cleaned so well. I'm a clean-freak and I had nothing to complain about! I bet even the tops of their doors are clean.
The breakfast is no-nonsense and run by one older lady that is no-nonsense too, but as nice as honey. She refuses to let you do ANYTHING but eat, and does it all - takes orders, serves, serves more, cleans up and makes the toast and never burns it.
There must be over 30 rooms in there? From what I gathered, very very few are en-suite. I also encountered many mature couples who have been there multiple times.
Then there are the budget travellers and students, which lets face it, no one can be vetted prior to being given a room key. We booked a twin room (doubles were taken) and shown to a room that certainly saw better days. As we were on a romantic weekend, this room made us want to cry. Clean, spotless, but dirty walls, bleak white sink - I went out to check the shared bathroom and asked my husband if there was a chance to leave...but London is a very pricey town and this price was...very good (76 GBP for a twin with shared bathroom.) We assured ourselves that there must be one useable shared bathroom in all the place (there are many!!!)
I passed the young man who checked us in and asked, "do you possibly have any other rooms." He asked what was the problem, I said none, just that it was a bit grim in there. He offered a renovated room, which we took without seeing! This room, as well as the first, were facing the front of the hotel. Room 11 was fine - definitely painted and refreshed. Oh! All rooms have fantastic flat screen TVs. The linens were clean and although budget (the sheets were scratchy), I'll take clean over comfy any day!!! Flat pack wardrobe was broken on the bottom, and took up a lot of space in the room. The room had a sink, and windows that opened, which we did.
This is very communal living and there were 3 other doors near us on the top floor, and not all people were raised apparently with other people so slamming of doors, talking outside the door, etc., these things you have to live with all night. Very unfortunately, I spent a good half hour at 2 AM listening to a girl being sick in the bathroom after stumbling upstairs. Again, this is NOT the fault of the hotel or the owners, but please remember this is a budget hotel and a lot of students stay here. The area is full of budget hotels and hostels, so even after the sick girl went to bed, the noise of the rude people in the streets (yelling, whistling) is...loud.
Of the three beds in the our twin room, one was new, the other two so soft they went quite to the floor.
Now we only slept at the hotel, not used it as the destination of our trip. The second night was better, much calmer all around and seemed the place full of students in a group, and they were all so nice. No problems the second night, except for waking to someone opening and closing their doors next to us. I did not use the showers....
Our side of building had a new shower and what looked to be an older one. Top floor, not much pressure. And you had a choice of boiling hot water or boiling hot water. (No, that is not a typo.)
I'm not a breakfast eater, so next time we'll spend a bit more money for a higher level hotel and go have a lunch or breakfast elsewhere. The crazy thing is, for 76 pounds, this is a great value for a bed in London, especially one so close to the tube. The location is lovely; I enjoyed walking around the area, and the hotel has two lounges for folks to relax and spend time meeting each other, as well as a place to keep your luggage.