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The Blakemore Hotel, Bayswater, London, UK

We got a deal through wotif for a one night stay at The Blakemore Hotel, situated in Bayswater.  The hotel is in a great spot really handy to Hyde Park, convenient for the Central Line tube stations and a pleasant neighbourhood of shops and restaurants.
We arrived at the hotel early, around 12 noon after our long-haul flight from San Francisco.  Our room wasn’t ready so we confirmed that it would be ready for 2pm, per our booking confirmation.  The surly receptionist told us that the policy is 3pm access so we replied that our confirmation stated access at 2pm, she hospitably snapped back saying ‘no, it’s always 3pm where does it say that’…so we showed her!  After a long-haul flight and no sleep for 24 hrs this was the last thing we needed.  She conceded, said we would get the room at 2pm so we left our bags and went out to find some lunch.
A thunder storm downpour made sure we got soaked so we returned to the hotel a little before 2pm and the room was still not ready…by 2.40pm we were sick of waiting and enquired again, to be told we would have to wait until 3pm!  The Kiwi wasn’t having any of it, so it was sorted out and finally we got access to Room 15 feeling rather irritated.

recently refreshed room

The hotel appears to be going through a refresh and the room looked recently renovated, with a lovely big bed in a decently sized room.  The bathroom looked flash, however as we used it we realised how badly designed it was!  The soaker showerhead is placed so you end up soaking the floor of the bathroom and the loo, as the screen is too short.  The shower and bath controls stick out at the side of the wall so you end up bashing yourself as you shower.  There is no space for the loo paper holder, so it sits on the floor and potentially the paper will get wet from the shower!  Another situation where it’s style over substance, but everything worked well and it was clean.

Stylish bathroom

Breakfast was included, and it was the usual suspects for a continental breakfast.  No selection of teas though, and just big urns of prepared coffee which I didn’t touch as I couldn’t imagine it would be any good!
Really, the hotel’s selling point is it’s location and the price we paid through the wotif offer of £99 made it good value.  Had the staff been a bit nicer and more professional about access to the room I would be raving about the place, although if I had paid full price I would have been most unhappy about the staff’s attitude.  The wi-fi connection was a bit ropey and didn’t always work from the room, which was another irritation.
The UK hospitality industry may need to remind their staff what the term “hospitality” means.  I have found on this trip that the language barrier has been an issue, where Eastern European staff are employed without sufficient English to truly communicate in an effective way and hospitable way.   Certainly the Blakemore may need to remind it’s staff that a warm welcome is appreciated by customers and that there is a certain way to handle issues that may arise.

Posted in Accommodation Review, Travel.

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