We don't like our flight connections to be too tight and so we decided to enjoy the luxury of an early afternoon flight from Edinburgh before connecting the next day onwards to Miami. Given the number of cases we also decided to try the new Sofitel at Terminal 5 even though it cost about double that of one of the budget hotels near the airport. It was worth it. If, like us, you arrive and depart from Heathrow then it is really easy and you are never outside - very consoling if the weather is foul. Access is via lifts and wide corridors. It takes around 10 minutes and you can take the airport luggage trollies right to reception where the hotel porters take over and the bags appear in your room. On leaving they collect he bags and put them on airport trollies again for you to take back to the terminal building and your departure.
We were upgraded to a luxury room which is always a good start and the room was excellent. A good size with all the usual features including flat screen tv, bathrobes and slippers, complimentary bottled water and an otherwise empty fridge. The bed was very comfortable, a really good feeling, and the bedside lamps and reading spots made sitting up in bed a very pleasant experience. There was ample space for our cases and easy-to-set controls for air con and room lights. The bathroom was similarly very good with bath and separate drench shower cubicle. For those who shave in the old-fashioned way the illuminated shaving mirror was a boon. The only small gripe would be that when reclining in the bath the it is difficult to watches the tv em bedded in the mirror as it is placed at around head height - this did not spoil our stay! There is no noise intrusion from the airport, it is fabulously quiet.
We ate in Vivre and found the food good, cooked in the open-to-view kitchen. A major plus was the willingness of staff to adjust the dishes offered to cater for special requirements, in this case my wife's vegetarianism. While perhaps a bit on the expensive side for what it is (the hotel's La Belle Époque offers more refined dining) in decor/ambience the menu appealed more than the Carluccio's which is close by in the terminal itself. There is a good wine list with some very decent wines at the cheaper (£25) end, like the Carignan.
Staff, as so often, made the stay. From Kerry at check-in to Filip with our bags, and in the restaurant, they were unfailingly polite, efficient and helpful.
Highly recommended and we believe it has an award as best airport hotel in Europe.