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“A vision... obviously not (yet) matched by reality...”
2 of 5 bubbles Review of Hotel Cafe Royal

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Hotel Cafe Royal
Ranked #55 of 1,088 Hotels in London
Certificate of Excellence
Brussels, Belgium
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
“A vision... obviously not (yet) matched by reality...”
2 of 5 bubbles Reviewed January 8, 2013

As an admirer of the Old Cafe Royal, which I had already visited with my parents in its glory days, I was more than excited to find out what the Cafe Royal would become as a Hotel.

Well, they aimed at opening for the Olympics... and as of now are still not fully open, and when you stay there you "feel it".

The rooms are designed to my liking... yet for my wife they are to spartanic.
Yet technical flaws and dead sockets are then also not my joy.

The staff certainly tries, yet we have visited the empty restaurant, and the food was mediocre... with fast starters (with shells in the crab meat)... then an eternity for overcooked mains with cold sides... and then dreadfully dry dessert.

Overall, I might come back in 2015... until then, I hope they get their act together...

Room Tip: Go somewhere else until 2015 (Mandarin Oriental, Claridge's, Dorchester, Corinthia etc.)...
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  • Stayed January 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
7 Thank Carl S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
LSailer, General Manager at Hotel Cafe Royal, responded to this review, January 11, 2013
Thank you for taking the time to share your feedback. I am pleased to hear you have an affiliation with Café Royal and hope you were able to note all the efforts made to restore the historic areas. I was of course most disappointed to read your comments with regards to the restaurant as we pride ourselves on our food and service and have received very good reviews from many of our guests so far. Clearly however we did not meet your expectations for which I sincerely apologise, please be assured we are taking every measure to rectify.
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Rating summary
  • Location
    5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    5 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    5 of 5 bubbles
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (191)
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Monte-Carlo, Monaco
Level Contributor
49 reviews
14 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 50 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed January 4, 2013

We stayed two nights over Christmas period during the "soft" opening. The hotel was still in snagging stage with some very real issues with the rooms eg. Electrical plugs falling off the wall and patchy in room entertainment.

The prices for the hotel are very high and (even with the introductory "discount") are not worth the money until the hotel is fully open.

The room style will not be to everyone's taste (a little like a minimalist prison cell chic kind of look around the bed), the rooms are a good size (we had a suite), the bathrooms huge.

Don't be worried about noise issues, the sound insulation is so good we could not hear anything and our room overlooked Picadilly Circus.

Give it six months before trying...

  • Stayed December 2012
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
3 Thank The_Brown71
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
LSailer, General Manager at Hotel Cafe Royal, responded to this review, January 11, 2013
Thank you for your useful and constructive feedback. As you realise we are still in soft opening phase but I assure you we are working tirelessly to eradicate these imperfections. Over the next coming weeks more areas will become open and available for guests to enjoy, including Mansard bedrooms with fumed oak panelled walls which may be more to your liking. Following in the spring are historical suites and the Akasha Spa and Wellbeing Centre. The team and I very much hope to welcome you back to enjoy the hotel in full.
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Somerset, England
Level Contributor
88 reviews
47 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 44 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed January 2, 2013

Newly renovated, the Café Royal is a strange blend of ultra modern and classical beauty. This historic building has had some of its public areas restored to original opulence, such as the lobby, the function rooms and the amazing staircase and they are truly stunning. The dining room and the bedrooms are minimal and in my view characterless, even unpleasant to be in. We stayed in December 2012 and there were some teething problems with the room, our room keys didn't work on the fancy key system, a plug socket fell off the wall and there was a light shade missing in the bathroom. They will sort these things out no doubt as they get towards full opening. They really have overdesigned the rooms in my view, everything is unnecessarily complicated in pursuit of the super high tech and modern. Thus, you should plan to spend a good long time figuring out how to operate the B&O TV, the curtains, the lighting, everything really. It was all there to impress us, in fact I found all the gadgetry touches a bit cheesy and way too time consuming. I didn't sleep well, the enormous feather pillows had no substance to them and I struggled to find a sleeping position on them that worked. The rooms have been decorated in neutral colours but rather than wallpaper or paint on the walls there are what seem to be large rectangular concrete tiles - you can see these on their website. I hated them, it looked like a prison cell, which is not how I want my five star accommodation to feel. I had planned breakfast in bed with the newspapers the next day and whilst the breakfast was delivered in a warming oven on a trolley which turned in to a table for two and was wonderful, the newspaper wasn't delivered and I just didn't feel relaxed and comfortable lounging in the room. The most outstanding aspect of our stay was the food - it was without exception, fabulous. Try mint ice cream or rice pudding, they are the best desserts I have ever tasted. I would go here to eat again and again. I would only stay here again if a Regent Street location is essential to my plans whilst in London, otherwise, for the £350 per night price tag I would stay elsewhere and eat here.

Room Tip: Rooms at the back are amazingly quiet for this type of location - the downside is that your view is...
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  • Stayed December 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank feedbackmatters
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
LSailer, General Manager at Hotel Cafe Royal, responded to this review, January 4, 2013
Thank you for your constructive feedback. I'm very pleased to hear you found our culinary offerings to your liking. We have worked to sensitively restore the historical areas throughout the hotel while modernising and anchoring Café Royal’s heritage with a place in the future. The bedrooms are designed to bring the outside inside, namely the Portland stone used up and down Regent Street, this detail has been carefully replicated in bedrooms and throughout the hotel. You may like to know that we will have many more features in the hotel throughout the year, including the addition of Mansard bedrooms with fumed oak panelled walls which I believe will be much more to your liking. Your comments and patience during our opening phase is greatly appreciated, we certainly hope we will be of service to you in the future.
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London, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
391 reviews
149 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 265 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed December 29, 2012

We booked into Cafe Royal in its first couple of open weeks as Londoners to see how they had renovated it. There are some marvellous design touches here with retro 1930s high tech lifts and a great restoration of the grill room and ballroom. However, the rooms are ultra modern and stark with huge blank stone wall slabs and every function electronic down to the curtains! We liked the cool calm of the rooms, very large by London standards, but wondered whether some guests in the 5 star market would find them too stark compared with the opulence of Claridges or the Dorchester.The shower was awesome in a large entirely marble bathroom with nice Floris products.
Breakfast was good again in an oodly styled main restaurant room, and the staff were very friendly and helpful, though still finding their feet. We almost missed breakfast as reception said it ended at 11am on weekends when in fact it was 10.30 but the chef accommodated our late arrival.
As a suggestion, we would like to see the rooms softened up a little with some art on the walls and maybe a mirror, and some signage to reception to know who's who. I hope they thrive here

  • Stayed December 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
3 Thank Karen7
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
LSailer, General Manager at Hotel Cafe Royal, responded to this review, December 31, 2012
Thank you for taking the time to share your thoughts, it’s great to know that the hotel is being used by those local to London as Café Royal is such an iconic part of the city’s history. We have undertaken years of careful work to sensitively store the original and precious historical features while creating contemporary spaces with the convenience of modern living. In our opening month your patience and feedback is greatly appreciated as we all work to revive this iconic London landmark and add further finishing touches and details. The team at Café Royal hotel and I hope to welcome you back again soon.
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devon
Level Contributor
3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 13 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed December 27, 2012

we checked in for christmas with great expectations and they were all met, the rooms are of the best design I have seen in a long time something really special, the staff were all very proffesional and the food was excellent, I would have loved to see one of the suites but unfortunately they are not yet ready overall a brilliant time.

  • Stayed December 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank bradninch
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
LSailer, General Manager at Hotel Cafe Royal, responded to this review, December 31, 2012
I’m thrilled to read your review and hear of your positive experience, thank you for taking the time to share your thoughts. Please do pay us another visit in the Spring when the suites will be ready, I’d love for you to see these unique and spectacular spaces. The Team at Cafe Royal hotel and I look forward to welcoming you back in the not too distant future.
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Chester
Level Contributor
23 reviews
8 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 28 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed December 7, 2012

We arrived on Wednesday 5th December and were the very first guests to check into this brand new hotel. Arriving through the revolving doors into a large hall, the hotel instinctively felt very classy.

Check-in took just a moment and upon arrival at the room we were greeted by the biggest bed I've ever seen, an extremely stylish and contemporary decor, huge Bang & Olufsen TV, Nepresso machine, minibar and snacks and a bathroom that would not look out of place in a celebrity home! The bed was the comfiest I've ever slept in and the room was very large, layered with oversized wall tiles and floor to ceiling automatic curtains.

The extra touches, like the quote from Oscar Wilde they left on the bed (Oscar Wilde held meetings in the entertaining rooms in the original hotel I understand), the chocolates they left for us and the greetings on both televisions (as well as the main TV there is one built into the mirror in the bathroom), and the overall feeling that nothing was too much trouble, made this hotel an unforgettable experience.

As we were advised we were their first ever arrival since the redevelopment, we were treated to a lovely bottle of champagne in the room, poured by their wine-waiter.

In terms on location, you could not wish for a better one - literally a minute's walk to Piccadilly Circus making it ideal for the underground, plus being in the heart of Regent Street in the run up to Christmas made the experience even better!

We hope to be back very soon - thank you to all the staff who made this a trip to remember!

  • Stayed December 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
7 Thank pjj2k
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
LSailer, General Manager at Hotel Cafe Royal, responded to this review, December 14, 2012
I am delighted that as our very first guests you were able to enjoy the hotel in style, and at the standard that we have been striving to deliver. After nearly four years of development it’s incredibly pleasing to hear this feedback from the beginning and I hope you will return again soon
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Additional Information about Hotel Cafe Royal

Property: Hotel Cafe Royal
Address: 68 Regent Street, London W1B 4DY, England
Phone Number:
Location: United Kingdom > England > London > Soho
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beverage Selection Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#18 Romantic Hotel in London
#22 Family Hotel in London
#25 Spa Hotel in London
#34 Business Hotel in London
#53 Luxury Hotel in London
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$$
Hotel Class:5 star — Hotel Cafe Royal 5*
Number of rooms: 160
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Combining architectural heritage with contemporary design, Cafe Royal has been reincarnated as a luxury hotel in the heart of London's West End with the elegance of Mayfair to the west and the creativity of Soho to the east. Grand historic areas have been sensitively restored while 160 guestrooms, including 49 suites and six signature suites have been created in a contemporary yet refined style. Our guestrooms start from approximately 35 sq m / 377 sq ft to 212 sq m / 2,281sq ft with every room presenting itself as a suite. Continuing its celebrated legacy, Hotel Cafe Royal offers a selection of restaurants and bars for guests to enjoy. At the heart of the hotel, the Ten Room offers British informal dining all-day, while the Green Bar is the perfect place to relax and unwind with a cocktail. Restored to revive the ornate Louis XVI decor and detailing, the iconic Oscar Wilde Bar (formerly the legendary Grill Room, originally established in 1865), is now the place to enjoy Champagne, cocktails and a light menu of British dishes and live entertainment on select evenings. The Cafe, on Regent Street, revives the European tradition of cafe culture. To complete the experience, the Akasha Holistic Wellbeing Centre is an urban retreat in the centre of the capital spanning over 1,200 sq m / 13,000 sq ft featuring a large lap pool, sauna and Hammam/steam room and offering a range of signature treatments. Reflecting a core vision to harmoniously unite the four natural elements of nature, Akasha features four corresponding spaces; lounge/earth, spa/water, gym/fire, yoga/air. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Cafe Royal Hotel London
Hotel Cafe Royal London, England

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