I stayed here for four nights with my mum. I arrived on Wednesday and already from the entrance I could see it was a fine hotel. Check-in was quick and the lady (Laura) was absolutely wonderful, friendly and helpful.
The hotel room had a fridge, a washing machine, a dishwasher, a TV and a DVD-player, a heater, an iron, a stove, a microwave... It was definitely more than what I was expecting.
Nature light came bursting trough the windows. We requested for 'an apartment from the quieter side of the building'. It was nice not to have sounds of people stomping around and jumping up and down.
I asked Laura (the lady at the check-in desk) for advice on how to get to Watford Junction Station easily. She gave us the tube map which we didn't have, explained how to get there, wrote everything down on a paper and we got there for only five pounds each.
The lift was definitely very slow but it had very little effect on the apartment rating.
I felt very safe because there was always someone at the check-in desk and the front doors were always locked and could only be opened with a key card.
- KFC, McDonald's, Burger King, Tesco (grocery store), Pret à Manger, Sushi bars and Starbucks amongst many restaurants, night clubs and pubs only a few minutes away.
- Liverpool Street Station also only about five minutes away.
- Big, wide windows.
- Room cleaning 6 times a week.
- 24hr helpful and friendly concierge.
- Roomy fridge.
- Very comfortable and stylish room design.
30 St Mary Axe (aka The Gerkin) was located I'd say only two minutes away!
The whole area was clearly very high class.
- Bathroom's flushing system worked but the handle, that you have to turn to flush, was a bit loose.
- A slow and small lift (though this is very usual in the UK if you're staying in an old building).
- Maybe I just didn't find it, but no air cooler (and it got rather hot at nights).
- My Mac didn't find the WiFi at times, but when it did it worked well.
Overall very happy with this apartment hotel thing. I'd definitely recommend it.
There was not much noise at nights, considering it IS on Bishopsgate which is full of life especially at nights. Don't get your hopes up too high when sleeping in a hotel, it will never be like at home. But this apartment did well on trying to make it like one.
I'm a little confused by the bad reviews. We stayed here for a night and had no issues at all. We did read the complaints about the noise from the street if your room faces that way so we got a room facing the courtyard. Very quiet and we had a good night's rest. The rooms are quite spacious. Definitely more spacious than a similar type of hotel we stayed at last year. The separate bedroom is a nice size and the living area and kitchen is more than adequate for long stays. The bathroom could be a little bigger though. And yes, the elevator is slow but how it's described in some of these reviews is a clear exaggeration.
My stay: 8-10 December 2013
I arrived on a Sunday evening around 10 PM. Check in was uneventful and quick. I did request breakfast to be delivered and the desk clerk confirmed several times that I continental breakfast was £12.00. The building itself seems to be a repurposed commercial space, perhaps it was once an office. The elevator was comically small and slow, The floorplan of the apartment was a bit odd, with a kind of foyer area, maybe 8' by 12' then double doors that open to a livingroom/kitchen area. So there this little room before you get into the actual apartment. I can see if you lived there full time it might be a good place to store coats and a bicycle. It was absolutely clean and orderly, The living room was equipped with a TV, a nice desk for working, comfortable couches and so on. The bedroom also had a television, but I laughed out loud at its petite dimensions. The queen-sized bed was nice. The bedroom lacked enough outlets to plug in my phones overnight. The bathroom was tight - very tight.
The Wifi was sadly typical of hotels everywhere - choppy and very slow. At least it was included in the cost of the room.
Unfortunately, my evening was not to be very relaxing. A construction project was operating overnight. Now none of this was the fault of the management of Bishopsgate, however, the windows had almost no sound-proofing quality, and even without the construction crew, Bishopsgate is a busy road all hours of the day and night and the room is LOUD.. Ear plugs were no match for the noise and I had to resort to a sleeping pill, a choice I hate to make. The morning came too quickly - at 6:00 AM there was so much noise outside I didn't need an alarm.
My breakfast did not arrive when promised, I had to call down to the front desk, 15 minutes later a basket with a bit of food arrived.
Night two was worse, and I ended up sleeping in the foyer area on a pile of blankets just to get a bit away from the street noise. I checked out in the morning, and told the front desk person that the noise was intolerable. She was nice, and apologetic, but there was really nothing she could have done. It was only after leaving that I realized that the apartments were rented out hotel-style probably because they were hard to move given the complete lack of noise mitigation in their construction. As a frequent business traveller, I know for certain that it is possible to place a hotel room in a very loud place and still manage to keep the in-room noise levels down - I've slept in on-airport hotels with jets taking off and landing all night all around without nearly as much intrusive noise pollution in the room. For £439 a night, I expected much more.
So sadly, despite a nice, clean, well-appointed facility, I must give this place an "unacceptable" rating - at least for the street-side rooms.
I want crispy fried chicken...it was soggy :(
Soggy fries as well
Stayed here for 3 weeks on business. Location relative to the office can't be beat. About a 5 minute walk.
-24hr concierge who were friendly and helpful.
-Liverpool Street Station literally across the street.
-KFC, Burger King, McDonald's and Starbucks were a couple minutes away.
That's where it ends.
-Hands down the slowest elevator in the UK. I debated calling the front desk and having them press the button as I left the office.
-Piping was engineered such that it carries conversations from various rooms and floors below up to the 5th floor (Penthouse) where I was staying. Voyeuristic by nature, the conversations and noises I were privy to were quite disappointing.
-Bathrooms are extremely compact for Americans. I was able to sit on the toilet and rest my feet on the bed. To paint a picture, I am legally a dwarf and have a handicap placard in my vehicle to prove it.
Business appartments with modern but cold interior. Quite pricy place. Stayed in one of the lower level rooms towards Bishopsgate street. Could easily follow conversations of people waiting at the busstop in front of the building even with windows and blinds closed. Windows opened or closed doesn't make too much of a difference though. Definitely wouldn't recommend this place to anyone.
196 Bishopsgate offer a range of serviced apartments from Studios up to Two Bedroom Penthouse Apartments, and all with no minimum stay. At 196 Bishopsgate you benefit from the flexibility of a hotel while at the same time are able to enjoy the space and freedom of apartment living!
Established in 2000.
The company opened in 2000 and 196 Bishopsgate was the company's first Serviced Apartment building/ hotel in London. Since then 3 new hotels have opened in Singapore and 2010 will see the opening of 2 new design hotels; one in Shanghai and the other in London's east end.
196 Bishopsgate offer a range of serviced apartments from Studios up to Two Bedroom Penthouse Apartments, and all with no minimum stay. At 196 Bishopsgate you benefit from the flexibility of a hotel while at the same time are able to enjoy the space and freedom of apartment living.
The ideal location, in the heart of The City of London is a short hop on the tube from the thriving West End, a mere walk to the River Thames, and a stone's throw from the numerous bars and restaurants of London's fashionable Shoreditch & Hoxton districts.
Each of our 48 serviced residences are decorated to the same high standard and have been furnished with a contemporary flair. All offer fully equipped kitchens, marble clad en-suites, and dining areas. Whichever type of apartment you require, you are sure to have the space to relax, work or entertain.
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