Ew Grange City Hotel

, London, United Kingdom
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Ew Grange City Hotel

, London

Rooms: 240

8-10 Coopers Row - London - England - EC3 2BD - United Kingdom 20-7863-3700
721 Traveller

Reviews - Ew Grange City Hotel

Grange City Hotel - Worst 5 star in London???
Submitted by: Anke in 11/12/07
  • Age Group: 31 - 40
  • From: United Kingdom
  • Traveller type: Special Interest/Event
I got married on Saturday 8th December, in London. It rained for most of the day but the church service was beautiful, dinner was absolutely lovely and everyone was up and dancing as soon as the disco started.

The only thing that spoilt the weekend was the Grange City Hotel.

I arrived on Friday evening, with a room allocation of 12 rooms and several hungry wedding guests looking to check in and get the wedding weekend underway.

Personally, checking in took me 40 minutes. That's 20 minutes waiting to be served and another 20 minutes from the time I reached the desk till I had my room card in my hand. The reason given was that the receptionist wanted to "find me an extra special room". From listening to his increasingly worried phonecalls it was clear that, actually, no room had been allocated to me and he was trying to find a vacant one.

At the Grange City guests have to pay in full for their accommodation (in advance) at check in and then also put their card through again for pre-authorisation. When checking out, you then have to pay again for anything subsequently purchased. This system is apparently in place to 'speed up the process' - what it actually means is that everything is duplicated and extremely slow. Rooms are also not allocated in advance, as the hotel apparently had a problem with people not turning up. The queue at reception was enormous - it continued to be so, as far as I could tell, for the entire weekend, regardless of what time of day it was. There were never less than 4 people waiting at any one time. At one point there were eighteen.

It then took me another 15 minutes to a) find someone who could find the bags I had left with the hotel earlier, b) find my wedding dress, and c) actually work out how to hand them over to me so I could go up to my room.

Almost an hour later, and with some of my guests still waiting to check in as only one computer terminal now appeared to be working, I went up to the 10th floor. On entering my room, it soon became clear that the "extra special room" was actually directly over the train line, with the station announcements clearly audible through the double glazing.

The room itself was completely uninspiring and felt much more like a mediocre 3 star than a 5 star hotel room - tiny, a fake wood effect desk, no hairdryer, 2 small towels and a telephone that looked like a refugee from the 1970s.

The next day I asked that my makeup artist be sent up to my sister's room, as we would be getting ready together. 20 minutes after her arrival at the hotel, she rang me on my mobile to ask which room I was in, as no one in reception had any idea - apparently she had been standing at reception for 20 minutes while someone tried to access the computer system, with no success. All the staff in the immediate area denied all knowledge of having spoken to me.

While my sister and I were getting ready, my (then) fiancée was at our house arguing with the Grange Hotel booking service - someone from the Grange Group called him at 10am to demand an explanation for why he had been a "no show" at the hotel. Despite trying to explain that he was not due at the hotel till that evening, the person on the phone ended the call insisting that he had not arrived and that his booking had therefore been cancelled.

Not what you need on the morning of your wedding,

My sister asked for a black cab to take us to the church (5 minutes away by car) - having agreed to book a black cab, the concierge booked a Mercedes, which proceeded to get lost on the way, despite us telling the driver that he was going to wrong way, and then charged us £20.

After an absolutely amazing wedding and reception, we headed back to the hotel at about midnight. My husband (!!) and I went up to our room to find that our key card wasn't working. Again. Third time that day. Perfect.

We actually got off lightly. The hotel gave us a new key card and we got into our room. Little did we know that two of our guests had to sit in reception for almost an hour, as the hotel did not have their room ready. At midnight. Despite the fact that they had booked the room a month in advance. They were eventually upgraded to a suite - they headed up to the 12th floor at about 1am, only to find that, when they tried to get into the room, the key card didn't work. You've probably spotted a theme emerging.

The next morning, we were woken at 8.50 by housekeeping banging repeatedly on the door. Lovely start to our first day as a married couple.

I complained to the Duty Manager and had some of the room service charges removed from my guests' bills. This did basically nothing to compensate me for the fact that the majority of my guests had complained about either the standard of service, the room facilities, the systems, the breakfast, the staff's attitude, the hotel in general, the queues... and on and on and on.

I was mortified at the fact that people had paid for a stay that was, at best, OK and, at worst, shockingly bad.

With all the beautiful hotels in London - most of which actually seem to care about guests and customer service levels - I can only hope that the AA re-visit the Grange City and actually see it for what it is - a hotel that is simply not delivering and does not deserve the rating it currently has. At the moment, 3 stars would probably be too generous.
Avoid, avoid, avoid
Submitted by: Soo in 03/10/06
  • Age Group: 31 - 40
  • From: United Kingdom
  • Traveller type: Business Traveller
Before writing a scathing review, I thought I'd better check with the hotel website to see what they claim. This is what they have to say:

"The Grange City Hotel is a spectacular new luxury 5 star hotel. Superbly located with unique panoramic views over the City and just a gemstone's throw away from the Tower of London the Grange City represents a first for a hotel of this standard in the City."

Okay, now I can begin. First, a bit of background. I was booked into the Grange Holborn because of an early meeting in Southhampton Row, i.e. solely for location. I would normally stay at the Covent Garden Hotel or similar (see reviews - they are wonderful), but was concerned enough about making the meeting in an unflustered state, I chose the Grange Holborn. I have written on their section of Tripadvisor in detail about what happened when I arrived, but in brief, they had cocked up,'lost' internet bookings and didn't have a room. The solution to dispatch me in a taxi across London to their sister hotel the Grange City by the Tower of London. Swallowing the frustration of being transferred from the hotel I only chose for location to a venue at the opposite side of the City, I accepted the apologies, and believed the promise that the City Grange would give me a 'wonderful' room and look after me.

Arrival at the City Grange was not the 'welcome' experience of a hotel keen to make up to a guest. An extraordinarily impatient and brusque receptionist made no eye contact, offered no help with bags and believed that a sneering swoop of the hand served as directions to the lift.

A word about the foyer itself- it is brash, vulgar in its decor and, when I arrived and left the hotel, thick with stale smoke as guests appear to smoke everywhere and anywhere in the public spaces.

On the way up to the room on the 11th floor, two surly members of staff completely ignored me. But to the room - after all, it was going to be 'lovely' given the problems at the Grange Holborn wasn't it? Er, no.

Nasty tacky, fake wood, dark brown, dusty, small, stuffy, unclean in the corners, feeble hair dryer tethered to a drawer, UHT milk and cheap fittings. I am open mouthed at the audacity of a hotel that claims such a room as 5 star. I would be hard pushed to see it as comparable to 3 star hotels in which I have stayed. The 'spectacular luxury' claimed by the hotel certainly isn't to be found in the rooms.

Perhaps the view would compensate? Looking at the Tower of London at night could lift the spirits of a frustrated traveller. And the hotel is so proud of its 'unique panoramic views' as stated on its website. On pulling the curtains, I was greeted not with the glistening Thames but the incinerators of a large office block that looked directly over my room. Certainly a 'unique' view but hardly panoramic.

And then came the piece de resistance of this depressing, wretched experience - the sound of the first train thundering under my room. Yep, strangely the hotel doesn't mention that it is built directly over a railway line. And those trains are a) loud b) very regular c) finish late and d) begin very early.

Dinner in the deserted, but weirdly smoke filled restaurant was unappealing, so I asked the concierge for directions to local restaurants. He was utterly uninterested and the best he could muster was a Chez Gerard, or a nasty Indian. Being in the City means there are fewer dining options, but this seemed unnecessarily uninspired.

After a night accompanied by the trains, the hotel really surpassed itself in its ineptitude in the morning. There was a saga involving ordering breakfast which makes me shake my head in disbelief when I think about it several days later. Then, as I was dressing with the 'Do Not Disturb' sign on the door, I was interrupted by persistent banging on the door which turned out to be the window cleaner.

I have rarely left a hotel with such unmitigated horror at the level of service, standard of decor, cleanliness and facilities and a sense of overwhelming feeling of being thoroughly ripped off.

I got in a taxi to try to make it across London in time for the meeting that had led me to book a Grange hotel in the first place. It took 45 minutes rather than the 25 that the hotel had told me to allow and I was, as I had feared, late. A disastrous end to an utterly disastrous stay.

So, in short I'd agree wholeheartedly with the hotel's promises that "Grange City represents a first for a hotel of this standard in the City" because there has never, in my experience of business travel, been such a desultory standard of hotel with the audacity to masquerade as 'five star' imposed on the unfortunate guests of EC1.

Historical Traveller Reviews of Ew Grange City Hotel

Very Good

from A TripAdvisor Member
Terrific hotel. Great for business travelers. Very nice rooms and excellent service. The lounge was great. Free 24 hour internet service. Free refreshements in the lounge also.


from A TripAdvisor Member
Agree with the other reviews - this is far from a 5 star hotel. It looks/feels like something out of Dallas/Dynasty from the 80s. The staff are unhelpful, rude, and above all havent got a clue what they're doing - quite unbelievable. The rooms are small with no storage space, the hotel smells, the restaurant has no atmosphere whatsover and the food is dreadful. This hotel stinks and the Novotel over the road looks far superior!! Dont be fooled there are hotels which are 100 times better in London.

Good but not 5 star

from JJF
Booked this place last minute as had a friend visiting and my flat was out of action! Paid £80 through Late rooms so not bad price for London, although it wouldn't be worth paying much more. Requested a room with a view but they messed up our reservation (twice) so ended up with a room on the 2nd floor with view of the street. Room was huge and quiet but sparsely furnished with a few knocks and tears - certainly not 5 star. No CD player, bathrobes or orchids. Thought the pool and spa were pretty nice, much better than average and all the public areas were well presented. Breakfast was nothing special although service was efficient despite it being very busy. Overall staff could have been friendlier and more helpful though, you could barely get a smile out of any of them! Location was great, quite a nice area 1 min from Tower Hill tube and the Tower of London, 5 mins from bars and restaurants on the other side of the river, a few stops from the West End. Worth staying here if you can get a late deal and want a hotel with a pool/spa.

Do not stay here

from A TripAdvisor Member
This hotel is NOT 5* they have simply graded it themselves ( of course this is only my opinion...) Stayed there for a weekend and had an awful time - too many things wrong to mention, state of the room, broken tv, smelly room, prices in the hotel are a complete disgrace and the staff - even senior management were completely obnoxious, worst of all - the busy sign on your door - means NOTHING in this place. TWICE my partner and I came back to our room to find up to 4 peopole at a time in there, doing what? I'll never know - i asked but was not told. I even walked to reception and said - do not come to our room today as my partner is unwell, within 1 hour - they were there.... I have stayed in a lot of hotels - and although this may seem good value - its barely a 4* trust me - spend your money else where.

Not 5 star

from Sean777
Booked a great rate of 80 pounds per room per night on the hotel website, this included a poor breakfast with cold coffee not a good start. At the price it was great value with wonderful views of london Bridge and the tower of london. Although slightly away from the action there is a tube station next door. After a while the interior does resemble some dining establishments in nearby Brick Lane, but at 80 pounds its hard to complain.

Consistently good

from colctrav
Very good weekend rates available directly from the Hotel's website. Worth asking for high floor room and river view - also worth paying a small supplement for an exec room - they're much larger.

Yes it is away from the West End and quiet which many would see as plus points, but the action of London is only a short tube ride away.
Worth staying here for the stunning views of the Tower of London and the river.

Good spa and pool.

Staff very friendly and helpful, reception staff and front of house manager (Royce) are exceptional.

Unless you have a pressing need to stay in the West End, would recommend this hotel without hesitation.

Pros and Cons!

from SMOD
We visited the Grange City Hotel on Saturday 23rd October 2004.

While I was born in London, I've lived in Suffolk for the past 20 years and Saturday was an opportunity to play tourist. A visit to Hatton Garden, Oxford St. and Petticoat Lane Market.

The Grange City is just what others have described, a businessman's hotel in a prime London location.

It should be noted that the hotel is being extended at the moment (buiding works) and is sited on top of an underground station (Aldgate), albeit this in truth did not adversely affect our stay.

Checking in was painless and the room much as expected, being a reasonable size, clean and well appointed.

What I had rather forgotten was that at weekends, the City of London is largely deserted and shut. No shops or restaurants / cafes open for miles. Indeed you have to travel as far west as Tottenham Court Road before you find life.

On the weekend of our visit, the underground was in meltdown. Tower Hill tube and Aldgate East were shut and there was no Circle Line, which meant that taxi and bus were the only real alternative.

Back to the hotel, we didn't take advantage of the pool, but on the Saturday night the wine bar was largely deserted save a group having a meal and on the Sunday Morning the breakfast was very average.

In summary (not really a 5-star) but good value assuming you get a good price. We paid £95 for the room including continental breakfast.

Nice Business Hotel City Location near Tower of London

from A TripAdvisor Member
Interesting how the rooms apparently vary in amenities provided. We had CD player, iron and ironing board -- but no orchid or bathrobes! Would have liked the bathrobes. Rooms are well fitted out, good sized and pleasant, with the bathrooms nicely done. I wouldn't really call it a "five star" hotel although the service was good and the rooms are very nice. I was there on business, but it is very convenient to the Tube and just across Tower Bridge you can access restaurants and the Design museum. Seemed a reaasonable value for the price -- by London standards.

Great hotel and a great price

from A TripAdvisor Member
We booked for 2 nights at the Grange's special weekend rate (only 95 pounds per night!!) and were totally impressed. A bit a of a slow start with a trainee at reception but after that it was all good. Classy and spacious rooms, brilliant location and the gym, pool and spa facilities are all top notch. The bets hotel we have atyed in London by a country mile - we'll be back!!!


from Doc_Jon
Easy to sum up this place... Brilliant! We have just spent two nights in a double room at a luxury 5* hotel in london for £80 per night including continental breakfast. Previous review is spot on. Location is excellent, very close to Tower Hill underground but also away from the crowds. The hotel itself is wonderful. We made full use of the gymnasium, swimming pool, sauna, spa and steam room, all free of charge. Towels were provided as well as changing facilities etc. Don't forget the pound coin for the lockers! Only minor complaint was that the fitness centre closed at 8pm on a weekend instead of 10pm. The room had all the luxuries you would expect from a 5* hotel except we didn't have any bathrobes or CD player contrary to a previous review. Didn't realise, but next time we go I shall enquire. TV had all skysports channels so managed to watch the Ryder Cup and cricket, but no other choices apart from the terrestial channels and BBC World. No foreign channels for example except a Japanese one. Staff were all very friendly and helpful. No problems for checking out 2 hours late so we could spent more time in the pool!

Top Local Tips for London

For Bars and Shopping Stay as close to Covent Garden as possible for a weekend as the Tube often undergoes engineering works and is not too reliable, it also closes near midnight and therefore prices of taxi's increase the price of a night out! Also when using the tube the spaces in between the station names on the maps are not relative...you could be walking more than expected!

China Town Try it and get a bargain meal in the centre of London

If you don't have breakfats included in the rate... The Weatherspoons pub over the road does breakfast for £2.50 and it's alright.


Other names for Ew Grange City Hotel

  • hotel grange city
  • grange city london
  • grange city hotel london
  • grange city hotel
  • Address: 8-10 Coopers Row - London - England - EC3 2BD - United Kingdom
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