Thistle City Barbican Hotel

, London, United Kingdom
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Thistle City Barbican Hotel

, London
4 star

Rooms: 463

Central Street - London - England - EC1V 8DS - United Kingdom Hotel Website | | 0870 333 9101
955 Traveller

Reviews - Thistle City Barbican Hotel

Never again
Submitted by: Kevin in 22/05/09
  • Age Group: 51 - 60
  • From: United Kingdom
  • Traveller type: Business Traveller
Where do I start;
Accommodation, not bad, although the central heating was on 24/7 with outside temparatures of 18 degrees, no valve handles on the radiators to turn them off, like sleeping in a greenhouse.

Service at breakfast was nothing short of shocking, you can expect to que for at least 20 minutes to get a seat at a table, then the fun begins, not all cutlery is there, no butter or milk on the table - tea or coffee, forget it you can finish your breakfast before they come round. I stayed for 22 days on business, never again.
Excellent Hotel
Submitted by: John in 05/01/07
  • Age Group: 26 - 30
  • From: United Kingdom
  • Traveller type: Young Couple
Stayed here over Christmas, the Leisure club was great to escape from all the usual Christmas Fuss.

Hotel staff were great and the upgraded room was really good.
Nice Reception Area, Shame About the Rest
Submitted by: Ron in 23/10/06
  • Age Group: 26 - 30
  • From: United Kingdom
  • Traveller type: Business Traveller
If you are on a business trip I would sincerely advise avoiding this hotel. The last thing that should be on you mind is the though of coming back from a hard day to this hotel, both in terms of the hotel and the surrounding area..
I arrived at 2100 check in was about the only good thing about the visit, the young lady (Arabela I think her name was) was nice and very patient with a wary traveller and my collegue.
The floor we were staying on was being redecorated with all the walls stripped down to the plaster board and emulsion paint fumes throughout the entire maze (sorry corridor). My room was 'basic' with the 14 inch TV on a floor stand positioned perfectly to kick every morning, along with a trouser press, twin beds and a lead for the internet connection. First thing that was missing happens to be the remote, not on the bed or table. So I inform the reception desk, face to face, that I had no remote - and the promised they'd get a replacement sent up to me. Never happened. Turns out the room gets very cold during October so sensibily enough the radiator doesn't work. So next option for some heat would be a nice cup of coffee, there were cups, sugar, coffe packs and that's it, no milk and sensibly enough no kettle. Turns out the overprices internet (50p/min) also didn't work.
I didn't bother bringing up these point in the end - after all, if they couldn't sort a simple remote , what hope was there for the rest of this!
Oh, and checkout, the staff were best described as rude and asking the concerige to order a taxi was a complete mistake.
In short, this was a throughly miserable stay with the only good point being the charming young lady who checked me in. 2/10 is probably far too generous.
Submitted by: Linda Birks in 03/10/06
  • Age Group: 51 - 60
  • From: United Kingdom
  • Traveller type: Weekend Breaker
Excellent room. Excellent location. Excellent service.
Great visit
Submitted by: Chris in 14/09/06
  • Age Group: 31 - 40
  • From: United Kingdom
  • Traveller type: Business Traveller
I was greeted as soon as I arrived with a smile from the chap on concierge and the Front Desk team were efficient and helpful.

Paid for upgraded room which was good and had air conditioning, room service was quick and hot.

Leisure club is superb with a good size pool, sauna, steam room and jacuzzi.

All in all this place is good value for money, worth paying for upgraded room although they are refurbishing the standard room corridors.
Submitted by: Bart in 19/03/06
  • Age Group: 51 - 60
  • From: United States
  • Traveller type: Family Traveller
Shabby room (very cramped) in a shabby neighborhood. There was no AC or vent- just a radiator and floor fan. No clock radio, box of tissues or even a pen. There was a small room safe, but it was not bolted down! Telephone and internet access ridiculously expensive. The staff was pleasant, sometimes competent, but mostly clueless.
Submitted by: A Travel Library User in 22/12/05
  • Age Group: 31 - 40
  • From: United States
  • Traveller type: Business Traveller
Absolutely terrible. The TV bites, 50p/min for internet access and worst of all the worst mattress I've ever slept on. I've had more comfortable nights flopping at the bus station. Never again.
Customer Service!???
Submitted by: JB in 14/12/05
  • Age Group: 18 - 25
  • From: United Kingdom
  • Traveller type: Business Traveller
After an extremely long day travelling and working in London I arrived at Thistle City Barbican to find that my room had been double booked. The staff at reception were entirely incompetent and having taken my details left me at an abandoned check in desk without further word or service for a full 15 minutes. Following a further wait of 30 minutes during which time I was not even offered any refreshment, several of us were then provided with a shared taxi to take us to your Marble Arch hotel.

Upon arrival at this hotel I was subject to a further 20 minute delay to check in again. Once more your staff provided an exceptionally poor service leaving me feeling as though I were causing them inconvenience rather than your company inconveniencing me. When finally in my room and having fallen asleep from exhaustion I was then woken by a call from your reception staff at 01:00 wanting me to come down and provide credit card details because they had followed the wrong procedure.

The next morning rather than be treated with consideration I was subject to a further argument with reception staff who were trying to charge me in inflated rate. When I enquired about the possibility of transport back to the correct part of London I was met with rudeness and the outright rejection of the idea.

I am a frequent business traveller and have never received such poor service. I can think of no reason why I should continue to give Thistle hotels my custom having endured such a total disregard for customer service.

Historical Traveller Reviews of Thistle City Barbican Hotel

Never again

from Torianna
Where to start?!

Stayed here on business, first room i was shown to was tiny and the corridor stank of sewage! I was promptly moved to the other newer building and upgraded which was a definite improvement size wise but in no other way.

The hotel bar was extortionate even by hotel standards and the food was appalling in the bar.

Breakfast was ok but for £15 a go?!!! If the company hadn't been paying i wouldn't have bothered.

The location is dreadful, not even with a male colleague would i venture out at night. There are no local eateries so you have to go to the awful bar or starve.

Even walking through the high rise council estate to get to my office was a scary journey in daylight. There's a kareoke bar round the corner that had about 3 people in it - not particularly inviting (i looked through the window from the other side of the road...)

I had to leave early due to family crisis and when i got home i found i'd left my toothbrush charger behind and asked my colleague to get it for me.

He was told that it wasn't there but further investigations lead to him being accused of lying and he made them show him the room I'd been in with a memeber of staff, what was on the side? My charger. Broken.



from iarmst
This hotel is truly awful. I stayed here for one week (!) on business and will never stay here again. I was put in the old building for my first night, even though I had twice verified over the phone that I was to have a room in the new building. The old building is like something from the 1950's. Awful. Old, cold, depressing. The new building (6th floor) wasn't much better. It was a truly terrible experience, and I will never stay here again. The area is also very run down and I would imagine quite scary at night to walk to the Old Street tube stop. I have nothing positive to say about this hotel.

Thistle City Ghetto

from A TripAdvisor Member
Forget it! This hotel is in Clerkenwell, a truely grotty part of London and should be renamed the Thistle City Ghetto. You could starve to death in the effort to find anywhere nearby to eat outside the hotel. We started our stay in the old part of the hotel on a £70 special which lasted 5 seconds as it was tatty beyond belief. We then moved to the new half of the hotel (after a complimentary upgrade) and 3 rooms later couldn't find one any cleaner than the first. We eventually gave up as we had a party to go to. The stay was topped of nicely by a fire evacuation at 6.30am the next morning which was, it transpired, a real fire in a guest room on the floor above us. Lovely. Outside in the cold in a grubby street of London where we experienced the highlight of our stay - a man with a sense of humour whistling the theme tune from The Great Escape. We missed breakfast as they forgot to tell us it was rescheduled due to the fire. We made our great escape as fast as possible.


from A TripAdvisor Member
This hotel is in a terrible location - surrounded by what look to be council flats, and not a safe area at all. Nothing within walking distance (not that you would want to walk anywhere!), it's not even in the Barbican area! (I should have got the hint when the website said that the company provides a shuttle bus to the nearest tube stations - i.e. they are all miles away!)

The room was really grotty - loads of big black marks over the walls, very very dated decor and funiture. Carpet felt really grubby to walk on and obviously had not been hoovered. Also there were lots of 'bodily hairs' in the bath as it hadn't been cleaned properly.

Felt very unsafe - no proper lock on the door and lots of noise.

Food was REVOLTING! I felt like being healthy and ordered a chicken stir fry - it was absolutely swimming in grease. Revolting - even tho I was starving I could hardly eat any of it. Breakfast no better - firstly they had 'overlooked my order' and I got it 40 mins late and it was a paltry selection of croissants and toast.

I checked out in disgust after one night (was supposed to be staying for two but couldn't bear it!)

Never again.

from A TripAdvisor Member
My poky single room in the old 3-star building lacked even one drawer, and the cupboard was tiny. The bath/shower hot tap didn't move from scalding. On my last day, returning from the usual very disorganised, messy breakfast room (always running short of cups, coffee etc), I found my room door wide open, with my bag in full view of anyone passing.

The concierge people were surly; I spent my first night awake, nauseous after being served an omelette like a piece of insole in the noisy smoky bar. (After a 12-hour coach trip, with my last meal at lunch-time, I was told the restaurant couldn't take me till 9.30).

The location is drab and the walk to Old St tube not one that any lone female would be happy to take at any time of day. I had two hefty taxi bills that weekend, and learned my lesson: pay more, stay centrally and save in the long run.

hotel with two faces

from a.mateman
I stayed in a single room okt '04. They didn't have one in the new building so I had to stay in the old one. It was a really tiny room and it was a little bit smelly. The window was making noise because of the wind. Breakfast (continental, served in the old building) was very basic and the room had no style at all. The fitness/ healthcentre was good for hotelstandards. Location was poor, it really takes to long to travel to the main shops. They are supposed to be a 4 star hotel but it's just a normal 3 star. The girl at the reception told me she had a lot of complains about the old building. If you are loking for a hotel with style go to the Landmark you pay more but it's worth the money.

Tatty room, good public areas

from A TripAdvisor Member
As an ex-Londoner, I was looking forward to spending some time in my hometown for a few days on business. The hotel public areas are very nice and the staff friendly, but the area is awful. Whatever you do, get there in daylight, as walking to this hotel from the tube was an experience I would never like to repeat. Or if you want to get the courtesy bus from Old Street, check where it stops as there are 8 exits.

I was upgraded to a superior room and thought yippee, I need not have bothered. The furniture was tatty and there were some awful stains on the bed throw/pillows. My room was also next to the service lift, so the noises at midnight were not appreciated.

Ouch! very, very bad experience

from A TripAdvisor Member
On the second night my partner (small, female) closed the window to shut out the noise of hotel machinery. The window disintegrated, showering her with glass. I called an emergency number within the hotle and was told 'windows don't just break'. I went to reception and demanded to speak to the duty manager, and was told 'shut up or you'll be kicked out'. On getting to our room, one of their security people told my partner to 'take off all your clothes and get in the shower'. Our complaints the next day were met with disbelief and borderline accusation, the window having been hastily repaired. Written complaints were greeted with similar disbelief and claims of witness statements to my physical violence! (I had raised my voice, NOT my hands!). I would advise anyone, for their own safety, never to stay at this hotel

Book a room in the new wing for great value London

from NinaS
I stayed at this hotel for a saturady night in a single room - when you usually end up spending a fortune. After reading trip advisor I contacted the hotel and specifically requested a room in the new wing of the hotel and it was great. Only a small single room but clean, tidy and with everything I needed - and with the swimming pool jacuzzi and sauna what more could you ask for at £38?

Very nice hotel for sightseeing visit

from markBournemouth
We booked this hotel last minute and was not sure what to expect after reading some of the other views. What a nice surprise. Very clean hotel lovely room with air con, friendly staff esp in the bar! Nice pool although a little smaller than the picture(wide angle lens trick!).
Barbican and Old street tubes about 7 mins walk(old street nicer walk).
For London break you cant go to far wrong with this hotel. Thislte Tower a better bet if your not so fit and can afford the extra price.

Top Local Tips for London

Good fish and chips in Barbican Fish Central on Central Street is a great spot to enjoy great traditional Fish and Chips in a pleasant sit down restaurant atmosphere if you're staying in that part of the city (Barbican).

Borough market Go to Borough market Fridays and Saturdays

don't stay here rubbish


Other names for Thistle City Barbican Hotel

  • thistle city barbican london
  • thistle city barbican hotel london
  • thistle city barbican
  • Address: Central Street - London - England - EC1V 8DS - United Kingdom
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