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“"Can I interest you in a proper room, sir"?”

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The Royal Horseguards
Ranked #114 of 1,072 Hotels in London
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed March 6, 2012

My heart sinks when I check in to a so called 5* hotel and the receptionist asks me if I want to upgrade my room for another thirty quid. He's basically saying "You've been conned". The five star room you thought you'd booked is in fact a refurbished, windowless broom cupboard and if you want any sight of daylight, you gotta pay more. It stinks.

Being an older building, The Royal Horseguards has many internal rooms which at best, (room *04) face onto narrow vertical passages which deny you any view of the sky, and at worst (room *21) which appear to have an artificial window with a light behind it. To add insult to injury, the beds "double" beds in these rooms are 4' 6" wide. In my opinion that's a single bed in a five star hotel. Apparently, only 20 rooms have king size beds.

My advice is to print the photograph of the example of the room you have booked from the hotel's website, and point out to the receptionist that it indicates that dayight is included. My advice to the management is to take as example the The Strand Palace Hotel, where rooms 'without a view' are clearly stated and discounted accordingly. And stop pretending to be a five star hotel.

Room Tip: Choose a room facing the street, or better still, the river.
  • Stayed: January 2012, traveled as a couple
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4  Thank CrestaRider
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
HotelLondon, General Manager at The Royal Horseguards, responded to this reviewResponded March 21, 2012

Thank you for taking the time to post your comments regarding your recent stay with us at The Royal Horseguards, Please accept my apologies for the obvious disappointment you experienced with the lack of light in your room and the size of the bed.

As you have stated we are located in an old building, dating back to 1885 and unfortunately a proportion of our rooms are located on the inner court wells which do have limited natural day light. We do sell these rooms as our base product in acknowledgement of this factor. Some of our guests do prefer our court view rooms as they considered quieter and therefore easier to sleep in if you are not used to the noise of a busy city.

As all our rooms are different in shape and size, the designer allocated the largest bed possible to fit the space in the room when the refurbishment took place. As you quite rightly say, we do only have 20 Executive King rooms with river view available to book, however over 45% of our Executive double rooms do have king beds in them but we not sell them as a separate room category as we believe having too many rooms options can become confusing when trying to reserve a room.

I do hope you would reconsider about returning to us, so that we could be given the opportunity to prove to you that we are a 5 star property.

Kind regards,

Anna-Marie Dowling
General Manager

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3,527 - 3,533 of 4,694 reviews

Reviewed March 6, 2012

I was reading a lot good reviews before making the booking, every little details is well take case and on top of it got a free upgrade without even asking.

  • Stayed: March 2012, traveled on business
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Thank Giggelsteiner
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
HotelLondon, General Manager at The Royal Horseguards, responded to this reviewResponded March 21, 2012

Reply.
It's wonderful to hear we exceeded your expectations and took care of all the little details for you. Come back and see us again soon!



Kind regards,
Anna-Marie Dowling
General Manager

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 6, 2012

We stayed at the hotel last summer for three nights for our 19th Wedding Anniversary. We weren't disappointed. Reception staff very friendly and helpful with the doorman making us laugh. There were complimentary chocolates in our bedroom which was a very nice touch. The bedroom was a good size and contained all we needed. Kettle didn't work but one call to reception and it was immediately changed. We had a street view which was fine. We had hoped for a view of the Thames and the London Eye but this didn't distract in anyway. The bar staff were absolutely fantastic as were the cocktails and as to the price, lets face it you pay for what you get in life and these were sooo good. The breakfast was a good selection albeit the cooked food was a little cold at times or maybe we just like our food piping hot. We liked it so much we have booked to return in April to celebrate again. Can't wait.
The Harveys

  • Stayed: July 2011
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Thank 2011theharveys
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
HotelLondon, General Manager at The Royal Horseguards, responded to this reviewResponded March 21, 2012

Thank you for choosing to celebrate your wedding anniversary with us. We obviously made a good impression as you have chosen to come back to us again this year! We are delighted to hear that all aspects of your stay were so memorable that you can remember such detail near a year later. As you say our cocktails are soooo good and an ideal way to celebrate any special occasion.

I was disappointed to read that you found the temperate of the cooked items at breakfast a little cold. We will make sure everything is super-hot for next time you return to us.

We are looking forward to seeing you in April.

Kind regards,

Anna-Marie Dowling
General Manager

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Reviewed March 6, 2012

Stayed here for 1 night and chose the hotel purely for the location as it was very close to where I was visiting that day. We stayed in an "Executive King" so that we were guaranteed a king sized bed, but we work in London so we didn't bother to pay more for a room with a view. The cost of our room was £195 including VAT room only, which for what we got was great value compared to other 5 star hotels in London. The room was very large and well equipped. The bed was very comfortable with good quality linen. The flat screen TV seemed very muffled at first - until we discovered the "surround sound" controls which brought the external speakers to life and improved things no end! Bathroom was huge with nice, large towels, under floor heating and a separate walk in shower (which had good water pressure). The TV at the end of the bath was a good idea, but the bath was rather too small for very decadent lounging, which was a shame! We didn't eat here so can't comment on the food, but the bar prices are extremely high - so be warned. The service at the hotel was as it should be - a little cool and formal perhaps, but certainly efficient. I would definitely recommend the hotel as long as you can get a good deal on the room rate. The advance purchase rates represent good value in my opinion, but they do require full payment in advance and are not refundable. But if you are certain that you will need the room then book in advance and enjoy a very nice, spacious and luxurious hotel experience.

  • Stayed: March 2012, traveled on business
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1  Thank quin-i-bog
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
HotelLondon, General Manager at The Royal Horseguards, responded to this reviewResponded March 14, 2012

Thank you for taking the time to write such a detailed review of your stay with us. It’s great to hear that we exceeded your expectations during this visit and you felt your stay was value for money. We do run various room and food and beverage promotions throughout the year, so please keep an eye for them. However if you know your plans are definite, our advance purchase rates are competitive as you discovered.
I was disappointed to read that you found our bar prices high. When we regularly review our menus, we do carry out a price comparison with other 5 star hotels in the local area to ensure we are in line with our competition. However, overall I was delighted to read that you would recommend us and choose to return to us again. We hope that is very soon!

Kind regards,

Anna-Marie Dowling
General Manager

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 4, 2012

I stayed here for a weekend with my partner recently and have to say we were both on the whole very pleased with our experience.
A slight taint was placed on the proceedings when we arrived 2 hours later than our allotted check in time and got to our room to find it still being made up by the maid. However in fairness to the hotel they immediately placed us in another room and on our departure the manager came and personally apologised with a very nice bottle of wine.
The room we had was very nice, my only slight gripe being the bed, though extremely comfortable was slightly on the small side for a double.
The room was very nice though the extra money for a river view is something I would personally say is essential.
Location is excellent, within a 5 minute walk of Waterloo and only a minute from the tube station.

Room Tip: Pay the extra for a river view as some room have a frosted window, which feels almost claustrophobic...
  • Stayed: February 2012, traveled as a couple
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Thank James B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
HotelLondon, General Manager at The Royal Horseguards, responded to this reviewResponded March 14, 2012

Thank you for taking the time to posted your review regarding your stay with us at The Royal Horseguards. I am delighted that you found the location of the hotel so useful. We truly are right in the centre of the city allowing you access to so many of the sights and attractions by foot or via the Embankment tube station.

I do agree about reserving a room with a river view at the time of booking, as this prevents any disappointment. The vista over The Thames and the London Eye is iconic of London and always makes any stay extra special.

Although I am glad to read that your overall impression of the hotel was good, I was disappointed to read that your room was not ready on check in. However I am pleased that the situation was sorted out promptly by our Guest Relations Manager, and I hope that you had enjoyed the bottle of wine by way of an apology for the problem you experienced. I can assure you that the intentions of the entire team is to go the extra mile to ensure each and every guest is happy.

The next time you choose to return to us, please make sure you request a king size bed to ensure you have more space.

Kind regards,

Anna-Marie Dowling
General Manager

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 4, 2012

We stayed at this hotel for a joint birthday and anniversary treat, it was booked over the Christmas period during a winter deal.. Firstly we were shown to a standard double room and were a little dissapointed to find out that the windows were blacked out due to the internal facing of the room.. We phoned down to reception and requested to move to a room with a window, we were advised that all standard doubles are internal facing, we did not know this at the time of booking and we were quickly upgraded to a most lovely room with a window :)
For our second night we thought we'd try the 1212 resturant for the pre-theatre deal, the menu looked lovely and the started was gorgeous!! When the mains came out it wasn't what I had ordered and as it was something I don't like I did mention something. There had been a mix up with the menu, and we had been given the lunch menu. Miguel and Umesh (restuarant staff) were so incredibly helpful and rectified the situation quickly, unfortunately we did not have time for dessert as we had a show to see. I know mistakes are made and it's they way they are dealt with that counts.
Based on the service we received we most definately will be returning again!!

  • Stayed: March 2012
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Thank Lapsidaisy
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
HotelLondon, General Manager at The Royal Horseguards, responded to this reviewResponded March 14, 2012

Thank you for choosing to stay with us to celebrate two such special occasions – we are honoured.
I was sorry to read of the issues you experienced, but delighted to read how they were rectified. Unfortunately mistakes can happen, but it is good to read that the team responded quickly to fix their errors, so it does not have a long term impact upon your stay. As you say, how we respond to these types of occurrences makes all the difference.
It is great to hear that you will definitely be returning again. So next time why not treat yourselves a little bit more and reserve a river view room? It is such an iconic view that will make any stay extra special. We hope you can return to us soon!

Kind regards,

Anna-Marie Dowling
General Manager

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 4, 2012

This is a fantastic place to stay. The reception areas are luxurious and smart, the rooms are well laid out and very comfortable. Its central location could hardly be better, just a few paces from the tube station. Staff are polite and attentive. It has the feel of a classy slightly old school British hotel. Excellent.

  • Stayed: February 2012, traveled with friends
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Thank Dogberry1258
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
HotelLondon, General Manager at The Royal Horseguards, responded to this reviewResponded March 14, 2012

Thank you for the fantastic review and it is such a pleasure to hear that you enjoyed your stay with us. Our aim is deliver the service that our guests so rightly expect these days from a leading 5 star hotel. I am pleased that you found the staff polite and attentive.

I do hope you think of us when planning your next trip to London.

Kind regards,

Anna-Marie Dowling
General Manager

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about The Royal Horseguards

Address: 2 Whitehall Court, London SW1A 2EJ, England
Phone Number:
Location: United Kingdom > England > London > Westminster
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Restaurant Room Service Suites Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#39 Romantic Hotel in London
#43 Family Hotel in London
#60 Business Hotel in London
#99 Luxury Hotel in London
Price Range: $270 - $539 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:5 star — The Royal Horseguards 5*
Number of rooms: 282
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
This majestic five-star hotel presides over the River Thames. From glittering chandeliers to contemporary design, this central hotel near the London Eye reflects a proud heritage. Expect more, with free wi-fi throughout the hotel, fully refurbished Victorian splendour, award-winning dining, afternoon tea and sumptuous river view suites. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
The Royal Horseguards Hotel London
Royal Horseguards London
The Royal Horseguards London, England

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