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“Normal Double rooms not 4 star”

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The Principal London
Ranked #447 of 1,075 Hotels in London
A TripAdvisor Member
Southampton
15
Reviewed February 28, 2006

Stayed over a weekend. The standard double we were given was definitely not 4 star. It was small with junk shop style furniture. The wallpaper had small parts torn off and the ceiling paper was nearly hanging off in places. The carpet was well worn and had buckled along its width which could be used by a small child as a trampoline. The paintwork was scuffed and the grouting in the bathroom had discoloured brown.
The window was mouldy around the panes of glass and had no secondary glazing causing constant annoyance from the noise of the air con unit outside.
The staff claimed no other rooms were available however, strangely enough, I could upgrade for an additional £60. This room was of a 4 star standard as was the Foyer which has recently received a multi million pound refurbishment. Shame they didn't think of doing the same to the rooms!
Breakfast was in a nice setting although on the Saturday we did have to queue at least 30 minutes for the priviledge. The food was, overall, adequate, but if you believe scrambled eggs should appear light and fluffy then you are in total contrast to the views of the Chef who makes them like slop. You could always try the fried variety I suppose, but these were only available in blue!
The staff were, on the whole, fine although not particularly friendly.

  • Stayed: February 2006
    • Value
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5  Thank A TripAdvisor Member
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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3,302 - 3,308 of 3,869 reviews

Reviewed February 27, 2006

First of all, this hotel like all others I have stayed at to date in London, does not give value for your money. When I arrived, before I was even assigned a room, I said: I dont want to waste your time or mine; please do not give me a room looking out on a wall. Guess what! That's exactly what had been planned! Apparently, most rooms of my calibre: standard double, did in fact looked on an inner courtyard (translation: WALL). I could of course upgrade for an additional 30 BP, but hey, why should I, since I was already paying over 200$ Cnd for basically an extremely ordinary, dumpy room even with a window looking out over the street (which yes, I did get, without too much trouble, and without paying an upgrade).

For me, the Russell had a great location, since I had a meeting at 17 Russell Square, so this was a hop skip and a jump from the hotel. Other than that however, I don't know how these hotels have the nerve to offer such ordinary, dumpy rooms, badly decorated, small, with absolutely nothing special or nice about them. I will say the lobby was nice and so was the bar, very cosy and British, but hey, I don't sleep in the bar.

I have yet to find a hotel in London that I feel gives me value for my money, and I am still searching.

  • Stayed: February 2006, traveled on business
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6  Thank Déesse
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
A TripAdvisor Member
Birmingham UK
15
Reviewed February 19, 2006

Visited London for the weekend and found this hotel on the web..looked great in the photos but then again don't they all!
I found the staff to be very helpful and the breakfasts were fantastic, the room was clean and very comfortable...only gripe was that the evening meals are very overpriced!!

Overall all very happy and would highyl recommend a friend!!

  • Stayed: February 2006
    • Value
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5  Thank A TripAdvisor Member
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed February 7, 2006

A London taxi driver tipped us off to this hotel and we loved it! It is a beautiful historic building with an impressive marbled entry, lovely patterned carpeting, stain glass stairwells, and even a little dragon atop the staircase! We were on a remodeled floor with a beautiful corner room and balcony. The bathroom was modern and well done. The hotel kindly kept our bags for us during a day trip to Paris and then kept them late on our last day in London.

There was some initial confusion as to whether our room included the wonderful full English breakfast buffet, but the staff was very professional, seated us and told us not to worry about it. They waited on us hand and foot and made our daughter feel like a little princess!

We will definately stay at this wonderful hotel again. It was only 2 minutes from the Russell Square Tube station, and an easy commute around London, and very close to some great little cafes and the British Museum.

  • Stayed: February 2006
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8  Thank we_6_Kings
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 24, 2006

My wife and I stayed with friends and we all thought this hotel was a real find. Literally round the corner from Russell Square tube station (on piccadilly line) and very impressive facade and extrance/ reception. Found the staff friendly and good humour, though we had a laugh with the head chef at breakfast time giving off to his underlings. Speaking of which the breakfast was well above average.
The rooms themselves were very nicely furnished though space was a little on the small side which is typical of London hotels. Having said that, for the price we paid (found a good price off a website) value for money was excellent.
I'd say I will stay here when in London in future.

  • Stayed: January 2006
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7  Thank drsunny
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 21, 2006

A stay at the Russell is memorable! We were particularly pleased with the courtesy of the staff, especially those at the front desk who were very gracious about a booking error by our booking agent and offered us our choice of other rooms. The hotel interior is beautiful and the location in Bloombury, right around the corner from the tube station, couldn't be better. It's also within walking distance of the British Museum. The rate including breakfast is a good deal for what you get, as breakfast separately can be expensive. The renovated rooms are well appointed with comfortable beds and linens, towel warmer, etc., and ours had a great view of Russell Square. The history of this fine old hotel is also interesting. Virginia Woolf and friends used to hang out here, though the hotel pub named for her was closed when we were there. We plan to stay at the Russell whenever we are in London!

  • Stayed: December 2005
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7  Thank jhuffj
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
A TripAdvisor Member
19
Reviewed January 21, 2006

Stayed at the Russell for 1 night for a shopping trip in London. We got a deal through superbreaks and paid just under £100 incl breakfast. The hotel is in an excellent location, about 20 minutes walk to Covent Garden, buses right outside the hotel and tube just around the corner. The staff were excellent. Our room was modern and large for London standards and was very clean. The buffet breakfast was lovely although the food in general was quite overpriced. We were on the second floor and found the traffic noise would keep light sleepers awake. Would definitely stay here again.

  • Stayed: January 2006
    • Value
    • Rooms
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9  Thank A TripAdvisor Member
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about The Principal London

Address: 1 - 8 Russell Square, London WC1B 5BE, England (Formerly Hotel Russell)
Phone Number:
Location: United Kingdom > England > London > Bloomsbury
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Center with Internet Access Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Restaurant Room Service Suites Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#285 Family Hotel in London
#298 Luxury Hotel in London
#346 Romantic Hotel in London
Price Range: $432 - $1,342 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4 star — The Principal London 4*
Number of rooms: 373
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The Principal London will open in stages throughout the course of this winter, and will fully launch in March 2018. Whilst the final touches are made to some areas, be one of the first guests to experience a sneak preview of the newly renovated hotel located in the heart of Bloomsbury, London’s most literary neighbourhood. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Russell Hotel London
Hotel London Russell
Russel Hotel London
The Principal London England

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