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Collingham Serviced Apartments
Ranked #135 of 1,076 Hotels in London
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed May 23, 2010

My husband and I stayed at the Collingham Suites & Apartments for 11 nights a few weeks ago. I’ve given it only 3 stars because we weren’t completely satisfied with this place. I had read so many reviews on this site where others rated the Collingham very high so I was expecting to be happy with it, but we were disappointed in our apartment and I was shocked that this place had gotten so many rave reviews.

This was our first trip to London, so for months before we booked our trip I researched many hotels/apartments. A lot of places that I considered had mixed reviews and many who used hotels in London complained about the very small rooms and feeling cramped. That was a big reason why I decided to rent an apartment. Also, the cost of hotels in London is very high; the cost is increased by the UK’s onerous VAT (value added tax) and by the currency exchange rate.

I reserved a 2 bedroom/1 bath apartment for the Collingham on booking.com and got a rate of £280/ night, which is the equivalent of $437.25 in US costs. In America, a hotel charge at over $400/night will get you an excellent place at the best newer hotels.

It’s possible that we were given an apartment that wasn’t all that nice because we weren’t paying their full cost. Several reviewers on tripadvisor.com mentioned that the Collingham gave them an upgrade when they arrived, but I feel like we got a “downgrade”. I communicated with the Collingham staff by email several times before our stay, and requested an apartment on a higher floor and something very clean and updated because my husband and I have mold and dust allergies. They didn’t make any promises, but said they would do their best to get us in something nice. All their emails were answered in a timely manner and were very courteous.

When we arrived after a long overnight flight, we were able to check in a little early, and we were put in Apartment 105. My husband and I were exhausted and ready to relax for a while, but when we entered the apartment we were stunned. The apartment wasn’t up to the standards we were expecting; it was old and tired-looking. The carpet had stains on it, and the curtains at the windows looked like they had been there since 1970; some of the sheers in the living area windows actually had holes in them. There was a red velveteen bedspread on the largest king bed that was coated with dust (and I had mentioned dust allergies in my emails). The floors were extremely creaky, and we could hear other people through the walls/ceilings; there were cracks in some of the ceilings. The furniture was old. The whole place was dingy and run-down. My husband said, “I feel like I just moved back into my cheap college apartment. And to think we’re paying $437 a night for this!”

I walked down to the reception area and told the manager that I wasn’t satisfied and reminded her that I had requested a higher floor because of allergies and something more modern. She said all the apartments were full and nothing else was available. She offered to let us use an air conditioning unit free of charge, but we didn’t need it so we turned that down. As if an AC unit would make me feel better, ha! But beware, folks – this place doesn’t have central AC so if London has a heat wave during the warmer months, the Collingham will only give you a window AC unit and then they will charge you extra for it! The Collingham’s web site had prepared me for the fact that I would have to pay additional costs for telephone usage and Internet access, but to charge extra for an AC unit was something I found astonishing. I gave my husband the news and he said he was too tired to deal with any hassles, so we decided to stay despite our dissatisfaction. In my emails, I had asked for some fans and there were 2 already in the apartment for us, so we tried them and one of them didn’t work, so I requested a different fan and a nice maintenance man brought us another one. I expressed my dismay at the apartment and he said, “The building is very old, you see.” You better believe it!

Although we weren’t happy with our apartment, the staff at the Collingham was very friendly during our stay (except for the manager, who knew I wasn't happy). I think the best thing that the Collingham has to offer is that its location was very good. It’s in South Kensington (a very safe area) and within easy walking distance of restaurants, two tube stations (Gloucester Road & Earl’s Court), and two supermarkets (Sainsbury’s and Waitrose). We went on a few professional tours while we were in London, and the tour buses were able to pick us up in the early mornings at the Millennium Gloucester Hotel on Harrington Gardens, which is an easy walk from the Collingham, only about 2 – 3 blocks.

Some other positives: the apartment’s kitchen was well-stocked; we were able to have our breakfasts there every morning which was timely since we had so many places to see. We had one evening where we heated some frozen dinners in the oven (or “cooker” as they call it). Anyone could do some light cooking in that apartment if they wanted to save on restaurant costs. There was also a laundry room in the basement with two washers and two dryers, and there was no charge to use them. Although the apartment wasn’t up to our standards, the beds were comfortable and the sheets and blankets were good quality. (We didn’t use the red velveteen dust-coated spread, of course.) The apartment became just a place to sleep and the rest of the time we were out sightseeing.

A few more negatives, however ... the apartment we rented needs updating in the worst way – new paint, new carpet, new curtains, and some new furniture. And put some alarm clocks in the apartment – there were none! Since there is no AC, when the weather is warm one is expected one to cool off by opening the windows, but there are no screens on the windows , so a few of those would be nice. Also, replace the knobs on the cooker where the numbers that are supposed to show the temperatures and the timer are rubbed off. Install some towel racks in the bathrooms that won’t fall off the walls if more than one towel is put on it, and install some outlets so that a woman can use a hair dryer and curling iron in the bathroom. Also, include some wash cloths for guests along with the towels – (Brits call them “face cloths”) – which we had to purchase at Sainsbury’s. And, when the weather turns cold, it would be a good idea to turn the steam heat on before 8:00 at night.

I looked at some recent reviews of the Collingham earlier today and noticed that the management posted this in reply to a positive review on April 30: “Collingham Apartments have recently been refurbished to a very high standard designed by a renowned Interior Designer to a quintessentially British Contemporary Design.” Well, we would have enjoyed one of those refurbished apartments immensely and then I could have posted a great review. Obviously, the refurbishing hasn’t made its way to Apartment 105 yet.

  • Stayed: April 2010, traveled as a couple
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5  Thank travelbugbigtime
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
reservations5, General Manager at Collingham Serviced Apartments, responded to this reviewResponded May 27, 2011

Thank you for your comments. We will strive to meet your expectations on a future visit and assure you of our best attention at all times.

We encourage Trip-Advisor visitors to read a selection of more current review to see different points of view.

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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831 - 837 of 1,079 reviews

Reviewed May 19, 2010

good location, quiet and near tube stations, for these reasons I would stay here again.

got a good deal through laterooms but would have been less happy with apartment if paying full price. the apartment we stayed in was quite tatty and could do with redecorating. not what you expect for close to £500 a night...

  • Stayed: May 2010, traveled with family
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2  Thank w61
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
reservations5, Manager at Collingham Serviced Apartments, responded to this reviewResponded May 27, 2011

Thank you for your comments. We will strive to meet your expectations on a future visit and assure you of our best attention at all times.

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed May 19, 2010

....since I stayed at Collingham appartments for about 3 consecutive months it really became place I could call home due to a nice and cosy appartment as well as staff, which always has been able to make me feel comfortable.

A true advantage of the hotel is the nice neighborhood, which includes everything you need for living, including:

- Supermarkets
- Gym
- Restaurants, Bars and Pubs
- Dry Cleaner
- Great connection to the subway (Earl's Court & Gloucester Road Station)
- great jogging area with the Hyde Park in 10 - 15 min running distance

Overall I had a great experience for 3 months and I can recommend it to everybody who needs either an appartment for a short business trip or an appartment for long term stay like I did.

  • Stayed: May 2010, traveled on business
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Thank PhilippThoma
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
reservations5, General Manager at Collingham Serviced Apartments, responded to this reviewResponded June 4, 2010

Thankyou for your kind comments. As you were staying with us for a long time I am really happy that you found the standards of cleanliness,service and attention to detail to be of the hightest standard. We hope we have the opportunity of looking after you again.

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Reviewed May 17, 2010

we enjoyed staying in this alternative hotel.
as French, we found it so typically British.
it's got a cosy atmosphere and a discret luxury. The staff, held by a very efficient manager is very helpful and gives a you a special attention which is radically changing compared to usual hotels. t's so different form those unpersonnal places.
comfort, location, concept, all was good to us and my kids who were discovering London did it in the best conditions.
We will definitely go back

  • Stayed: May 2010, traveled with family
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Thank remyFrance
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
reservations5, General Manager at Collingham Serviced Apartments, responded to this reviewResponded May 18, 2010

The Management and Staff at Collingham Serviced Apartments (4 stars) are delighted that you had a wonderful holiday in London, and that you enjoyed a welcoming and memorable stay here. Thank you for taking the time to share your thoughts with other trip advisor visitors. We hope that this might encourage them to stay with us!
We are so glad that you enjoyed your stay with us and had such a nice time visiting London. It is a great City and we are lucky to be in a fashionable and affluent area with easy access for sightseeing and shopping. We value your comments, and hope to have the chance to welcome you back.

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Reviewed May 11, 2010

I stay at Collingham Apartments frequently on my business trips to London.The rooms, service and comfort/cleanliness are spot on and I find it good value. Easy links to the City and great neighbourhood for dining/shopping etc. I have recommended to many others and they have all given me positive comments.

  • Stayed: May 2010, traveled on business
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Thank memberShropshire
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
reservations5, General Manager at Collingham Serviced Apartments, responded to this reviewResponded May 17, 2010

Thank you for your kind comments. We are always happy to hear that you enjoyed a Happy and Comfortable stay with us. How lovely that our guest comments grade us at 30th Best Hotel in London!! We are thrilled with this accolade.
Our location in South Kensington is ideal for the business traveller or tourist. Please do not hesitate to contact us at The Collingham, we would be delighted to assist with your enquiries for planning your trip.

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Reviewed May 3, 2010

I would definitely recommend these apartments. Unfortunately we only stayed there for one night. Stayed in another hotel for 2 nights and the room was tiny.
We had a three bedroom apartment and it was lovely. More than enough space and very clean. Thoroughly enjoyed our stay.

  • Stayed: February 2010, traveled with friends
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Thank Jumper_01
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
reservations5, General Manager at Collingham Serviced Apartments, responded to this reviewResponded May 5, 2010

Dear Guests
I am glad you enjoyed the space and comfort of our Serviced Apartments - as you say, it does offer much more space to relax than a Hotel room.

We hope to see you again soon.

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Reviewed April 30, 2010

Another brilliant stay in this wonderful hidden gem of a hotel.
Stayed in a new room this time - 140, three bedroom suite and it was just palatial.
Well done Beverley and team, great job again!

  • Stayed: April 2010, traveled on business
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Thank NumbersONEandTWO
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
reservations5, General Manager at Collingham Serviced Apartments, responded to this reviewResponded May 17, 2010

We are delighted that you enjoyed your stay at Collingham Serviced Apartments. Our guests love the fact that we are an all-suite hotel as the additional space is very refreshing in a big city, offering you space to relax and entertain. We value our personalised service and so I was pleased to read your comments about our staff. With regards to our location, we are 3 mins from Gloucester Road underground and close to shops/supermarket, and short walk to Knightsbridge and Museums.. We look forward to welcoming you back to the hotel soon.

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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 Collingham Serviced Apartments

Address: 26-27 Collingham Gardens, London SW5 0HN, England
Phone Number:
Location: United Kingdom > England > London > South Kensington , Earls Court
Amenities:
Kitchenette Suites
Hotel Style:
#39 Business Hotel in London
#48 Family Hotel in London
#114 Luxury Hotel in London
#159 Romantic Hotel in London
Price Range: $141 - $373 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4 star — Collingham Serviced Apartments 4*
Number of rooms: 25
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The Collingham is situated in fashionable South Kensington, within easy walking distance of Gloucester Road, South Kensington and Earls Court underground stations. Close to the superb shopping areas of Knightsbridge and Chelsea's Kings Road. All apartments are fully furnished to a high standard. All apartments (except for the studio) have a sofa bed which is suitable for sleeping 1 additional adult or 2 children. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Collingham Serviced Apartments Hotel London
Collingham Apartments London
Collingham Apartments Hotel London
Collingham Serviced Apartments London, England

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