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“Perfect Location”

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The Rubens at the Palace
Ranked #88 of 1,088 Hotels in London
Certificate of Excellence
GreenLeadersBronze level
Maine
Level Contributor
51 reviews
12 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 19 helpful votes
“Perfect Location”
Reviewed December 8, 2008

Our second stay at the Rubens - this time on holiday with my parents on their first trip to the UK. A wonderful experience with great service - not quite as attentive as our first stay several years ago. The location cannot be beat - easy walking distance to Buckingham Palace and Victoria Station. A reasonable hike to Westminster Abbey or Trafalgar Square. The hotel breakfast is very good - dinner was lacking in the Carvery.
Hot water and great water pressure every morning. beds very comfortable. The front desk folks are extremely helpful with any questions and suggestions. Would go back anytime.

  • Liked — location, atmosphere
  • Disliked — Small rooms, noise from lounge
  • Stayed September 2008, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Pleasant1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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4,014 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (860)
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Wheaton, Illinois
Level Contributor
35 reviews
31 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 72 helpful votes
Reviewed December 2, 2008

My husband and I stayed at The Rubens for 4 nights from 11/27-12/1/08. Check-in was okay. We arrived at around 10:00 in the morning and our room was not ready, which we definitely expected it not to be at that time of day so that wasn't a problem at all. I had asked if the room we would receive overlooked the palace mews as I had requested, and I was told that it was a fine room and I shouldn't try to change it at that time since it was already assigned to us. Okay, fine, I didn't push it at all, I just always want to ask before hauling our luggage up to a room and then really being unhappy with it and then need to lug everything somewhere else. So we left our luggage and hit the pavement for a few hours. The location was really perfect for our first trip to London. We walked around Buckingham Palace, over to Trafalgar Square, back through St. James Park, and caught part of the procession from the changing of the guards. After checking in, we were able to take a quick tube ride over to Westminster and then walk back. So much of the main sites are within walking distance of The Rubens, or a very quick tube ride away, so that was really great.

Okay, so now we are back at the hotel to take our luggage up to our room. The first thing I always do when I walk into a new hotel room is to sit down on the bed to see how cushy it is and look at their guest services book. So, sitting on the side of the bed, I glance up from the book, and stuck to the wall was.....something that I won't say here, but it was really, really gross and definitely should have been found and removed by housekeeping. I called down to the front desk and they sent up someone from housekeeping who kept questioning me like we had put it there. Um, we just walked into the room 3 minutes ago, and it would have taken longer than that to, eh hem, fill up the thing that was stuck to the wall. My husband asked her to send up a manager, who was genuinely mortified and who went in search of another manager. They understood that we did not want to stay in that room and moved us to a different room the next floor up. This brings me to the guest preference form they ask you to complete prior to arrival. I had sent it in several weeks before as asked. On the form, one of the questions asks for favorite colors. I stated that "we greatly prefer soft muted colors like cream, tan, and sage". The 1st room we were given was deep red and forest green everywhere, not at all "soft". However, we thought that's fine, we're in London where royal colors like that are traditional. However, the room we moved to (not a suite, but the same room type) was cream and sage, so it was obviously available. Really, nothing on the guest preference form seemed to be taken into consideration except for my request for a trouser press. Just something to be aware of when completing it. Our package included a dinner at their carvery restaurant, and one of the managers stated that he would upgrade us to their finer restaurant, The Library, for our included dinner. We appreciated it, but still wanted to keep our reservation at the carvery restaurant that night and stated that we would just pay for it and eat at The Library 2 nights later. He said that's fine and he would make all of the arrangements. So that night we go to the carvery restaurant, which really was terrible. We overheard several people complaining to the servers and management about the food. Anyway, we're exhausted from the overnight flight and the first day's jet lag has set in, so we just want to eat and go to bed. When we were seated (after giving our name and room number) we were told that a bottle of wine comes with the meal - which is a fixed price per person - and would we like white or red. Great, a bottle of wine comes with the dinner. When we went to pay for the meal, they stated that it was our "free" meal. We explained the situation, a dining manager was called over, and she said that was fine but then we would have to pay for the bottle of wine. This did not sit well with my husband at all, since we were told that the meal came with the bottle of wine. He went off a bit on this manager, stating that nobody knew how to handle their customers at this hotel, and that we were so disappointed considering their reputation is based on their level of service. We did at least find that the wine was then not charged on our final bill.

So, unfortunately, our experience with the hotel was not what we had hoped, and we questioned a couple times during our stay if we should just move to a different hotel. If we were staying longer, then we probably would have. I will say that the room we were moved to was nice and comfortable (room 221). As other reviewers have stated, the beds feel wonderful after a long day of seeing the sights. The full English breakfasts were okay, and the dinner we had at The Library was quite good. The walls were a bit too thin, and the first night we were kept awake by a neighbor talking very loudly from about 12:30 AM-2:30 AM. Would I stay here again? No. Would I tell someone to absolutely never stay here? No, I don't think I would do that either, but make sure you are getting a good rate and take a good look at the areas surrounding the bed before getting too comfortable...

We do look forward to our next trip to London!

  • Stayed November 2008, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank lovetotravelChicago
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Edinburgh
Level Contributor
21 reviews
8 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 23 helpful votes
Reviewed December 1, 2008

We stayed two nights and originally chose it due to its closeness to Buckingham Palace where we were attending an event.
From the minute we arrived to the moment we left, the staff couldn't do enough to help. We had elderly parents with us with limited mobility and made sure that they were comfortable in very respect.

  • Liked — The Rooms and in particular the great service from staff
  • Disliked — The Carvery Lunch (not bad but very simple)
  • Stayed November 2008, traveled on business
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
1 Thank Scottish_Ladies
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Rhoose
Level Contributor
44 reviews
14 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 28 helpful votes
Reviewed November 29, 2008

Not a bit of wonder that this hotel gets consistently good reviews.
Having booked a weekend (bed and breakfast ), from the moment of our arrival to our departure we enjoyed every minute spent in the hotel. The staff are amoungst the most helpful, efficient and charming you could ever wish to meet and consequently created a most friendly family atmosphere.
Our room was not particularly large but this was more than compensated for by being absolutely spotless and extremely comfortable. Although we booked B&B ( the breakfast was superb and the choice was literally endless ), we were so impressed that we opted to have dinner in the Library on the Saturday evening. Very unhurried and relaxing,the food was of a high standard and it was pleasant to see that diners were requested to turn off mobile phones whilst in the restaurant.
Thoroughly recommended and hopefully if we return to London this is the place we would hope to stay again

  • Liked — Staff service, cleanliness, comfort
  • Disliked — Did not dislike anything
  • Stayed November 2008, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank DoofRhoose
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
North Carolina
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed November 27, 2008

I have stayed at The Rubens on and off since 2002 and it's consistently been an excellent experience. The staff is friendly and professional, which is often not the case in London. You can be assured a great stay.

The Rubens pays great attention to detail. The sheets are great - and being a sheet snob, it's always good to know I'll sleep on good sheets and pillow cases.

Everything is always sparkling clean. They have every amenity one needs when away from home. At a fabulous price most of the time.
And the location is fantastic, as well.

You can't go wrong by staying there.

  • Liked — It's relatively quiet and in a safe neighborhood
  • Disliked — The heat was on too high in our room. We had to take apart the radiator to turn it off!
  • Stayed November 2008, traveled on business
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
2 Thank PinkyWyoming
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
NYC
Level Contributor
3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
Reviewed November 20, 2008

I had a great experience at Rubens at the Palace.
I arrived at the hotel after my long miserable trip - my domestic flight delayed, international flight was canceled and luggage was lost.
The staff at the reception desk was very efficient and friendly.
My single room was small but clean and good size for London. The bathroom was also clean - it seems to have been recently renovated. The concierge was very friendly and helpful to call my airline about the lost luggage. The location was also excellent near the station, restaurants, supermarket and internet cafe.

After one week, I stayed in another hotel in London where I had totally an opposite experience.
I regret that I didn't come back to Rubens!

  • Liked — staff
  • Stayed November 2008, traveled on business
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
3 Thank HKBKLYN
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Chicago, IL
Level Contributor
22 reviews
13 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 66 helpful votes
Reviewed November 18, 2008

I just spent three wonderful nights at the Rubens at the Palace and loved my stay. The hotel is incredibly nice and perfectly situated right in the middle of everything in London. In terms of location, the Rubens is hard to beat. It is located about 2 blocks from Buckingham Palace and about 2 blocks from Victoria Station, where the nearest tube stop is located. From the Rubens it is an easy 10-15 minute walk to Westminster Abbey and Parliament/Big bean area, a short walk to Hyde Park, a quick walk to the Picadilly Circus area, and with the Tube so close, its incredibly easy to get anywhere in London.

The hotel is very nicely done and the rooms, though small (but that is to be expected in London) have a nice touch of luxury. The staff is incredibly helpful and the service is fantastic, from the front desk at check in, to the staff in the restaurants and everyone else. I purchased the continental breakfast every morning for 8 pounds, which for London isn't bad at all. The breakfast had a very nice assortment of fresh fruits, breads, pasteries, juices, and yogurts and the service was exceptional. Definitely worth it, I think.

  • Liked — Location
  • Disliked — NOthing at all
  • Stayed November 2008, traveled on business
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank MattR_Chicago
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about The Rubens at the Palace

Property: The Rubens at the Palace
Address: 39 Buckingham Palace Road | Victoria, London SW1W 0PS, England
Phone Number:
Location: United Kingdom > England > London > Westminster
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Suites Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#26 Family Hotel in London
#39 Green Hotel in London
#64 Romantic Hotel in London
#81 Luxury Hotel in London
#106 Business Hotel in London
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$
Hotel Class:4 star — The Rubens at the Palace 4*
Number of rooms: 173
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Traditional, Edwardian-era hotel, originally built as a debutante hostel for nearby Buckingham Palace. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
The Rubens At The Palace Hotel London
Rubens At The Palace London
Rubens Palace
The Rubens At The Palace London, England

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