Thistle Bloomsbury Hotel

, London, United Kingdom
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Thistle Bloomsbury Hotel

, London
5 star

Rooms: 138

Bloomsbury Way - London - England - WC1A 2SD - United Kingdom Hotel Website | | 0870 333 9103
344 Traveller

Reviews - Thistle Bloomsbury Hotel

3/10
Poor catering and hopeless service
Submitted by: Richard in 26/11/07
  • Age Group: 31 - 40
  • From: United Kingdom
  • Traveller type: Business Traveller
Thankful to have left this shoddy hotel at last!
1) Extremely limited restaurant menu - if you don't like fish then hard luck. As a result I was forced to resort to room service for the rest of my week's stay as the listed room service menu is far more extensive!
2) Breakfast: While the food is good and plentiful, don't bother ordering hot food if you're in a hurry - even at quiet times it takes forever to arrive.
3) Room service is patchy at best. On two separate days my ordered choice was not available. One one of these occasions they didn't bother to phone back and tell me this for 20 minutes. Another day I called them back after my food hadn't arrived after an HOUR to find that they had attempted to deliver it to the wrong room and had then just given up!
4) One day the tea/coffee tray hadn't been restocked properly. I followed instructions and asked room service to include fresh stocks with my food order, but they just ignored my request.
5) On leaving the hotel I asked for my 'room service tray charges' (£5 per tray!) to be cancelled due to the poor level of service, but the receptionist refused and threatened to bill them to my credit card regardless. Unfortunately I didn't have the time to stay and argue the point with the manager, so had to pay up.
6) The majority of the staff only speak English as a second language and often have difficulty understanding simple requests.
7) Room safe broken and unusable throughout my stay.
I certainly won't be returning to this hotel again and will ensure my Company removes it from their approved list. What a terrible first impression of London it provides for our foreign visitors!
8/10
Clean Hotel Perfect Location
Submitted by: Mrs Cador in 20/02/07
  • Age Group: 41 - 50
  • From: United Kingdom
  • Traveller type: Weekend Breaker
My husband and I stayed for a weekend in Feb. 07. On arrival, the hotel staff were all very pleasant. The room was very clean and comfortable. The bathroom was a little outdated but also clean. We had the full English breakfast, which was included in the price. This was excellent with plenty to choose from. My husband and I will deff go back there again. Prime location for many of the shows. Just 10min walk to Covent gardens. Good location for bars and places to dine.

Historical Traveller Reviews of Thistle Bloomsbury Hotel

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from ToBeFrank
This is an old hotel, which is greatly in need of renovation due to an unacceptable amount of wear and tear for a 4* property. We had no hot or cold running water for over 1 hour on Saturday morning due to "the hotel being fully occupied and a lot of people taking showers at the same time" (according to a message on the TV screen - barely legible, as it was not tuned in properly). When water was available, the temperature of the shower swung from freezing to scalding without warning. We experienced poor service at the front desk both checking in and out (it took 20 minutes for the receptionist to come up with the correct bill). Two strangers (hotel staff) walked into our room without knocking on separate occasions. Quite probably there is a greater atmosphere on the moon than in the hotel bar (poor service here, too). The only positive point was the hotel’s location just off Oxford Street. However, there are other hotels in the area with just as good a location, so there’s not really that much going for it.

Really good value for money

from AmandaSwansea
Stayed at the hotel for 1 night and was pleased with the room allocated. The beds were really comfortable, with crisp clean linen and soft clean towels for the bathroom. The room also had an iron and ironing board which is a plus. The breakfast was one of the better ones I have experienced in London and the staff we very friendly and helpful. The hotel is in a great location, short stroll to the nearest tube and Oxford Street. I agree with some of the reviews who commented that hotel could benefit from a little redecoration, but for a London hotel it was more than adequate. I would recommend this hotel to anyone looking for good value for money.

Fair value for money

from A TripAdvisor Member
We spent 2 nights with 2 adults and 2 kids in 2 rooms from April 1st to 3rd 2005. We booked through londowntown and paid a rate of 97 pound something per room and night incl. breakfast.
The hotel is located conveniently near Covent Garden/Soho/Brithis Museum. Bloomsbury Way has lots of traffic however our rooms were oriented to a back yard (ugly) and pretty quiet. I don't think any of the rooms facing the street are in use, the windows there are covered with grime and look like they haven't been opened or cleaned for years.
The hotel itself is okay - especially for the price we paid - , however any prejudices you might have had about english grubbyness are confirmed.
In general the hotel lacks from attention to detail. Carpets are threadbare in places (bar, stairwell), laid out in a very unprofessional manner (simply cut out with strands of threads showing at the edges) - signposts have missing numbers and letters (e.g. "this is a non .mokin. .loo."), some doors are squeaky. The carpets all around the hotel are in dire need of vacuuming. Generations of dust have formed in the edges along the corridors as well as the rooms. Behind the bathroom door you could find the inevitable fluff with some curly hairs. The mattress was quite new but too soft for my esteem.
With the right processes and a little effort the problems could be fixed easily - there is plenty of staff around that could do the job if someone told them to.
The staff especially in the restaurant and the concerge were helpful and attentive.
Had I paid the official rate of 250 pounds per night, I would have raised hell - however since we had an excellent rate for London standards we were content with the price / performance ratio. What our kids liked most was the electronic elevator voice announcing "doors closing" etc. in a perfect Oxford English that could have been sampled from the Queen's parliament opening speech .

Lovely Hotel, Fab Staff, Perfect Location

from MrsDolan
We stayed at this hotel for three nights from 17th March and we were very impressed with it. We agree with some of the reviews that indicate that this is a very good three star hotel, as opposed to a four star, and the hotel is in some need of redecoration, but our room was lovely (even though it was on the mezzanine floor and had very little natural light - perfect for me who gets disturbed by light flooding through windows at 5am!!!!) and very clean and tidy, with one of the most comfortable beds I've ever slept on - my own bed at home included!!! The breakfast selection was very good, although there appeared to be capacity problems on the sunday morning, but this didn't spoil our weekend. The hotel is perfectly situated if you are planning a vist to the theatre, and specifically "The woman in White" which is about 5 mins walk away. Leicester Square, Piccadilly and Covent Garden are all within 10-15 mins walk away, and Oxford Street is just round the corner.

All in all, we had a lovely break and would recommend this hotel wholeheartedly.

Would definitely stay there again

from A TripAdvisor Member
I stayed at the Thistle Bloomsbury for 4 nights in mid-February. My room was a double executive, and I felt it was quite a good size for central London. The ensuite bathroom was enormous and immaculate - its only problem was a rather noisy power shower. The room was also clean and tidy other than a few smudge marks on the ceiling near the ceiling fan. Perhaps it was due to the fact it was off-season, but the only noise I heard from outside my room was the occasional slam of a door from other guest rooms.

I had no troubles communicating with the staff and found them to be very helpful in arranging for an early-morning taxi. The dinner service in the restaurant was quite slow but otherwise pleasant; I did not take breakfast in the hotel restaurant so cannot comment on that service.

The location of this hotel was extremely convenient - a few blocks from the Holborn tube station on the Central & Piccadilly lines, on a bus route from Oxford Street (with a stop just before the hotel), walking distance from Covent Garden and the British Museum.

Based on my overall experience, I would choose to stay at the Thistle Bloomsbury again, especially if I could match the great off-season rate I was able to get.

Great location, great bathroom, great Bed

from A TripAdvisor Member
From the reviews that I read here, I was leary, but this place was great! We had a great price on the room, though the cabbie overcharged us getting from the airport to the hotel. The bed was wonderful and the bathroom was quite large. Being from America and expecting things to be open until 4 in the morning, it was nice to be able to stay up late at the bar downstairs in the lobby and to order room service after, say 11 pm. Again, I had received mixed reviews on staying in Soho, but that was a great spot. My boyfriend and I were able to walk everywhere we wanted to go. There were record shops, clothing stores, clubs, and pubs all nearby. The staff was delightful and so were the other guests we met. Certainly give this place a chance! Great location. Great bathroom...bigger than most I have seen in Europe. And, the bed, if it hadn't been our first time in London, we would have never left it.

not a 4 star but still pretty good

from A TripAdvisor Member
After reading the reviews on the Thistle Bloomsbury here, I was really bummed. Of particular concern were comments that the rooms were not clean. But the Thistle had come up as the cheapest choice for my trip to London so crossing my fingers, I booked the hotel anyway.

To be honest, this 4 star should really be a 3 star. The wallpaper was peeling/scratched and the windows were dirty. But the rest of the room and the bathroom were absolutely fine. Both rooms were quite clean, with a nice towel warmer in the bathroom and the water pressure in the shower was great. Again, its not 4 star and definitely don’t expect boutique hotel style design but for what I paid I felt I got a good deal.

And for those who complained about the staff not speaking English fluently, well, it is an EU member country and England is a prime choice so people can learn English. This is quite common especially in the service industry. I personally didn't have any problems communicating with the staff.

In short, I’d say, great value, great location, great service.

Perfect for a short break

from A TripAdvisor Member
My family( Myself, my wife and our sons 5 and 8 ) stayed in a family room. It was very close to Kings x station , British Museum is round the corner and it is very close to West End attractions. Also the fact that Bloomsbury is a relatively quiet area, made this a very pleasant stay.The Hotel really was fine, it was clean and the Consierge and other staff were most helpful. The breakfasts were great and i would certailnly stay again. If people want the Ritz, then they should be prepared to pay Ritz prices or stop complaining about such a good hotel.

What a Christmas present!

from TonyBasil
Just spent an excellent weekend in London courtesy of Thistle Bloomsbury. Booked an Executive twin room for three nights, on arrival was told that all Exec twins were taken so we were upgraded to a suite at no extra charge. Room was spacious, clean, well equipped, quiet, very comfortable and decorated in a warm eastern style. Check-in staff were friendly and welcoming, breakfast was well presented and despite limited space the staff worked hard to keep the tables available. Seems like we stayed at a different Thistle Bloomsbury to some of the others commenting on the hotel. Negatives; smell of tobacco smoke in the public areas, but I guess this will be cured when the smoking ban in bars and restaurants takes effect next year and current renovation of church next door which gives the entrance a run-down look. Will definitely go back.

Oh, the anecdotes this hotel has given me

from wild_gypsy18
What was it about this hotel that earned it the unenviable prestige of 'the worst hotel I have ever stayed in in my life'? (And I've been in some pretty terrible ones, including one in Majorca I nicknamed 'the cave'). Well let's see:
* the bathroom of horrors. Deceased arachnids, a toilet I wouldn't wish on my worst enemy and a bath that had apparently never seen a cleaner. I got washed in the sink so's not to touch anything.
*The toilet was hanging off the wall, as were most of the light fittings.
* The door didn't lock, so I was forced to wedge a chair under the handle.
* I felt very uncomfortable with the hotel staff, especially when one man insisted on walking me to my door to make sure I could get in with the keycard. And then he tried to step inside the room after me.
* I was kept awake all night by the strangest singing from the church opposite (I think). My colleague and I didn't know what to make of it, but it was not only very spooky but also intrusive.
* It was exceptionally difficult to make oneself understood to the receptionist, who was at best, disinterested and at worst, just plain rude.

This hotel was like something out of a bad b-movie. If it weren't so late when we checked in, my colleague and I would have checked right out again. I would never recommend this hotel, and will never stay there again.

The plus point? It gives me lots of stories to tell about the world's worst hotel.

Top Local Tips for London

getting there A Taxi from paddington is cheaper than the Tube!! and easier!

Bargain prices Don't ever pay full standard rate for a room in London if you can help it. There are plenty of deals on a variety of web sites, depending on whether you book early, late or somewhere in the middle. Throughly recommend www.londontown.com for good value rates and good if you don't want to pay up front for your deal, can change or cancel until 24 hours before arrival just have to give credit card details to secure reservations.

get a good map don't rely on the underground map - it is deliberately designed to make travelling by tube easy but at street level it is often quicker to walk, especially in the West End

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Other names for Thistle Bloomsbury Hotel

  • thistle bloomsbury
  • kingsley by thistle london
  • kingsley by thistle hotel london
  • Address: Bloomsbury Way - London - England - WC1A 2SD - United Kingdom
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