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“Fit for a queen, with prices to match....but worth it!”

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The Rubens at the Palace
Ranked #74 of 1,078 Hotels in London
Certificate of Excellence
GreenLeadersBronze level
Reviewed July 28, 2010

Arrived June 26th and departed July 3rd.....7 nights. Truly enjoyed our stay. In fact, of our entire 18 night trip through Paris, Bruges and London, "The Rubens" room we stayed in was my mother's single favorite experience. I am a 47 year old widower that travelled with my 75 year old parents. We stayed in a junior suite, room 307, with 1 kingsize bed and a daybed. It was sumptously decorated with rich yellow and grey fabrics and very spacious by London standards. The entire room is bathed in afternoon sun. The manager said the room was just refurbished a few months ago. The bathroom was huge, all marble and soundproof. We took advantage of the special on their website: pay for 2 nights, get 1 night free. Even with 2 of our 7 nights free, our room total still came to GBP 1991.62 with tax(around $3000 total). We had to pay extra because of the suite deal, but if you pre-book, the fantastic breakfast buffet is only 10 pounds a day. There were some surprise freebies: bottle of wine upon arrival, glass bottled water, and canapes(latter delivered nightly, promptly at 6:30pm). A few drawbacks...air conditioning blows like a fan across the room, chandelier had several broken crystals, half shower divider allowed water to spray everywhere(we had a shower like that in Paris too so must be common). As soon as we walked in to our room, the front desk called to see if our room was satisfactory, but we couldn't answer it as the phone cord was broken. I had to walk down to the lobby to inform them, and they sent someone up immediatley to fix it. Also, the staff was very polite and helpful, but don't have overly high expectations of their friendliness after reading some of the gushing service reviews. Maybe we just didn't educate ourselves adequately, but we found the choice of restaurants very confusing at first. Also didn't know that the Carvery(same place they serve breakfast) had a 1, 2 or 3 choice course for the evening buffet. We spent GDP 80 total our first night learning the procedure. The breakfast buffet seemed like a better value. Those that are used to or love attentive waitstaff will enjoy this place....they even bring your hot plates back for you from the buffet. English breakfast choices include this black sausage, regular sausage, beans(canned), eggs made to order, pastries, breads, sandwich meat, various yogurts(including my fav, probiotic!), cereals, healthy cereal toppings, fresh fruit(cut up and whole), McDonald's style hashbrowns, juices, coffee, tea, toast delivered to your table and champagne(extra price). Hotel location is great. As others have mentioned, Victoria train/tube staion and theaters are minutes away. One added bonus if you book day trip bus excursions(they offer to book Evan Evans tours for you) is that most of them will pick you up right in front of the hotel and drop you off at the not too far Victoria bus terminal, and they return you to Victoria Station. If you like walking, most sights can easily be reached by foot. Trafalgar Square, London Eye and Harrods are a pleasant distance. Although rooms and inner hallways are very well air conditioned, the stairwell area is not and can be very hot during a heatwave like we experienced.....that is where the one hotel guest computer is on the first(not ground) floor. Had some access issues with it, but worked most of the time. The printer didn't work for me. One last thing...they had a great piano player that seemed to play a long time every night in one of the bars off the lobby that was very pleasant. All in all, a very memorable stay, and the suite was a nice splurge at the end of our trip!

  • Stayed: July 2010, traveled with family
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1  Thank ilovebruges
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Reviewed July 27, 2010

I spent many hours pouring through the 1000+ hotels in London on Trip Advisor trying to pick the perfect one. I wanted a 4*, in a good location,(but didn’t know where) moderately priced, reasonably sized, and was hopeful of a view~. After looking at the different areas and reading 100’s of reviews I chose the Rubens, even though it was over budget and no view, because of all of the excellent reviews on Trip Advisor.

Overall we were very happy with our stay at the Rubens.

I think the only reason I was moderately disappointed was just coming from Paris where we stayed at the Hotel Brighton, a similar quaint charming older hotel, but there we had a huge room, with a stunning view in an excellent location, for 25% less. It was just my(very wrong)assumption that London would have more value than Paris. London hotels all seemed pricy. I had considered doing a hotwire, but I knew we needed a king bed and larger than average room.

The location is very good, near the Victoria tube, and within walking distance to many sites, and right at a hoho bus stop. It was a very short walking distance to both Billy Elliot and Wicked. Having seen Wicked at home, we did see Billy Elliot while we were there.

We booked an executive king , and the size was adequate. (room 345) A little full with furniture, it had a large sofa that we could have done without, probably useful for a 3rd person. There also was a round table with 2 chairs and a desk and a chair. Alot of extra furniture for an average size room. The bath was small, but very nice. I had originally booked a deluxe king, I was really glad I changed to the larger room.

Like most everyone has commented on , all of the staff at the Rubens were VERY kind and helpful.

Two (very)minor complaints. The tub/shower did not have a full door or curtain, only a half wall and it was not designed well. Unless you tilted the shower head off to the corner water would go on the floor. Figured that out the first day! Not that big of a deal. Then the first morning we ordered room service. I ordered the granola with yogurt, strawberries and honey. I received a bowl of granola with strawberry yogurt. Not as advertised. I did mention this to guest services and she said she would buy me a drink.. But we never made it to their bar for a drink.

  • Stayed: July 2010, traveled as a couple
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2  Thank MarciaB10
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 26, 2010

My wife and I thoroughly enjoyed our two days at the Rubens and will certainly use the hotel again when we stop over in London. The location is very convenient in Buckingham Palace Rd., only 200metres from Victoria station and only a half hour walk on a warm summer evening from the West End theatres. The staff were extremely welcoming and helpful, the breakfast was excellent although layout of buffet was not completely intuative and logical, the room was of a very good standard and the low intensity light in the bathroom which was permanently on was an excellent idea for middle of the night. The service in the bar and lounge area was good although, as a beer and cider drinker, I found what was stocked to be very limited but maybe there is not the demand in London for beers and cider. On the whole we have no complaints and congratulate the management and staff on an extremely well run hotel.

  • Stayed: July 2010, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank Andrew2445
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 26, 2010

The Rubens at the Palace is an older, traditional, higher class hotel near Buckingham Palace with an historic WW2 link to the Polish Army in London. The room was sufficiently sized and priced for this part of town and what stood out in particular was the simply excellent level of service and the quality of staff. This really made the stay a happy one. Our room was very clean, quiet and had recently been refurbished to a high standard. Breakfast was good and priced comparitively with similar hotels around the UK. Bar prices were very expensive, but on balance we were very happy with our stay and would go back.

  • Stayed: July 2010, traveled as a couple
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2  Thank Chris H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 25, 2010

From the moment we arrived we were greeted by friendly staff - at the door, reception and the duty manager. This was consistent throughout both our 2 to 3 day stays at Rubens. We initially stayed in one of the Royal (themed) rooms which was very nice, although a bit pricey, especially when compared to the room we were given in our return visit. We had booked a 'Superior King room" and on check in were offered a room which had been equipped for disabled patrons. We were happy to accept this and were very pleasantly surprised at the size and quality of both bedroom and (especially) bathroom.

We always eat breakfast outside the hotels in which we stay and found a gem in Wilton Road, Pimlico, (about 500 metres behind Victoria Station) called "Pimlico Fresh". Top-class breakfasts at reasonable prices and great coffee. They even sell 'flat whites' because it is run by an ex pat Australian.

  • Stayed: July 2010, traveled as a couple
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Thank Ando54
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 20, 2010

We spent a wonderful five days at Rubens. This would not have been possible with out the help of concierge David. He always lead us in the right direction, helped us plan a last minute trip to Paris, suggested great resturants for after the theater. We would not have been able to experience half of what we did without his help. If you are going to stay here, definately look for David and get his help! You can't go wrong.
Rest of staff was friendly and helpful. We had the trip of a lifetime.

  • Stayed: July 2010, traveled with family
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1  Thank FromLasVegas2London
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 19, 2010

to celebrate my investiture at Buckingham Palace we chose The Rubens at the Palace from the internet. I wanted this special event to be memorable for everyone and the staff and the service we received ensured that it was . nothing was too much trouble and all my guests who shared a champagne afternoon tea with me and my family are still talking about it. What a perfect day! The hotel rooms were excellent and to quote family in single rooms - ' must be the best single rooms in LOndon'. We had a Royal Room which was luxurious and fitting for the occassion. Definately on our list of hotels to visit again in the future.

  • Stayed: July 2010, traveled with family
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1  Thank maureenwoodcock
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

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:
#18 Family Hotel in London
#40 Green Hotel in London
#64 Romantic Hotel in London
#70 Luxury Hotel in London
#106 Business Hotel in London
Price Range: $209 - $427 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
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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