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The Berkeley
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Reviewed October 24, 2008

We kicked off a six-night stay in the UK with two nights at the Berkeley. I was told when we checked in that we had been upgraded to a nicer room on one of the upper floors. It was the floor that the spa was on and quite nice; very roomy, great bed (I had stayed there a few years back and was disappointed that their idea of a "king" bed was two twins pushed together...they've fixed that) and beautiful bathroom. Like many of the high end hotels in London, they had very nice amenities, in this case from Asprey's. We had tea once in the Caramel Room which was very nice and drinks once or twice. It's a great Knightsbridge location with very attentive, polite staff and felt the hefty 350 GBP/night+ we paid was money well spent. Only downside was a phantom mini bar charge that showed up after we returned, but when challenged, the hotel refunded the charge immediately with apologies.

  • Stayed: October 2008, traveled as a couple
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2  Thank jimmysi
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed October 19, 2008

At the price point The Berkeley charges (in our case, one night with no food at the hotel -we ate out - and modest drinks from the Minibar, it was still over £500) you except a delightful stay. And yes, there were many things about the hotel that worked very well - but in summary I wouldn't recommend this hotel to others.

Check-in was a breeze (I particularly liked the layout of chairs in front of a reception desk), and the Champagne in our room which we'd ordered to be there on arrival had only just been put there as the ice was still frozen. The turn-down service had been good, the room a fair size, and an ironing board was brought up quickly when ordered.

So why not the 5* rating? I guess it's just because while the room was comfortable, it wasn't indulgent. There was Krug in the minibar (£75 for half a bottle if memory serves) but unlike other top-end hotels, nothing in there that made you smile. There was plenty of space in the wardrobes but no particular design features that stood out. The TV was flat-screen but no DVD player or selection of movies. The bathroom was OK (only 2 full size towels that weren't replaced at turn-down, only refolded) and while the toiletries were from Aspreys, one body-lotion, shampoo, conditioner and shower-gel were just standard. Yes we were in a smoking room but that was no need for the carpet to smell like an ash tray.

If The Berkeley were a person, it would be a Grand Old Lady. Aware of what's going on in the world, trying to keep up, but you can't help but feel that after all this time she's being left behind. And that's a shame because this could be a magnificent hotel (indeed, with a great dining room) if only it realised that being contemporary doesn't mean losing the values that its age and history have afforded it.

(Although as to how to keep the whining, precocious, noisy children out of the dining room on a Sunday morning I don't know... And can I please put in a special request for adult chairs with backs in your hotel bar? We're not at Kindergarten now with small, child like chairs in the "corridor" alongside the bar where most people get put. Indeed, in our case, to wait 15 minutes for the waitress to take our order.)

Sorry Berkeley... I'm afraid that with competition being the way it is, the only way to keep your customers coming is with great service, passion and wit. And I'm not all together your winning on any of those.

  • Stayed: October 2008, traveled as a couple
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5  Thank j1mb0b
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed September 24, 2008

Having spent some time to find a nice hotel in central London near Hyde Park - the Berkeley was a BIG mistake. I would have expected better for over GBP 300 a night !

The room itself was old and run down with a thread bare sofa and old bed.

The food was unbelievably poor for the price - for a chicken curry priced at over GBP 25, I would expect the best, not a tasteless microwave meal.

DO NOT STAY AT THIS HOTEL - IT IS TRASH !!!

  • Stayed: September 2008, traveled with family
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6  Thank Millar1968
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed September 22, 2008

Rude, obnoxious, horrendous staff. We were booked into the Berkeley by the staff of The Lanesborough as our party had grown by one and they were no longer able to accommodate our booking. When we arrived the doorman and security man just stared at us until I finally had to beckon the doorman over to assist us with our bags. The doorman and security were horrendously rude and grudgingly agreed to assist us. Not only that but I was so taken aback by their blatant obnoxious behaviour I immediately asked to speak to the Manager. He was even worse and dismissed the complaint as a figment of our imagination. The rooms are comfortable and luxurious but the staff are very, very rude. Throughout our 3 night stay the staff were continually rude, lackadaisical and prone to harassing our visiting guests. I do not recommend this hotel to anyone unless of course you can transport the bedrooms to another hotel. I am yet to understand the reason for the inherent rudeness.

  • Stayed: July 2008, traveled on business
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8  Thank hollytrip
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed September 12, 2008

I stayed with my wife and children earlier this month. I had seen the rather negative reviews on trip advisor and was a little concerned. I had no reason to be at all.
We arrived by taxi,the door staff whisked away our cases and we entered the hotel. The public rooms are not large or grand but pure understated luxury.That is a phrase that in my view would sum up the hotel.Check in was efficient ,given a complimentary drink and then shown to our rooms.
We had 2 interconnecting rooms which where well appointed with excellent bathrooms.There where little presents, cookies and drinks for the kids in the room which was a nice touch. Lovely towels, toiletaries, linen, as one would expect.
We ate in Petrus the first night and had the taster menu which was fantastic the only word of warning was we had the taster wine. 8 glasses later I can only vaugly recall the pudding. Somebody did say " you didnt have to drink them all" but hay!
Breakfast was very good cold buffet hot served at the table. The quality of the ingredients was apparent.
The second night we ate in the Boxwood Cafe. this too was very good. We again had the taster menu and the wine waiter was exceptionally good.The kids meals where a very good. My youngest said the pudding was the best part of London!
I have seen some negative comments about the staff. All i saw was a very helpful team from the moment we arrived to the moment we left. We are not the typical guests at a 5 star hotel with our 4 children etc. but where made to feel welcome and looked after very welll.
overall a lovely quitly sedate luxury hotel that i would love to stay at again.

  • Stayed: September 2008, traveled with family
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4  Thank pentrelegal
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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