London apartment location

Old May 6th, 2017, 05:25 PM
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London apartment location

We will be in London for three nights in August - in looking at hotels and apartments, I have found that it will probably be more economical for us to have a flat, even just for the three days. I really like having a kitchen for coffee and breakfast, as well as the additional space to relax after a long day of sightseeing.

I have found what appears to be a very nice apartment in the Marylebon area - on Wyndham Street between Marylebone Rd and York Street. Although we have spent time in London in past years, I am not really familiar with all the various neighborhoods. This flat - to be rented through FlipKey, a TripAdvisor rental agency we have had good luck with in past years - will cost about the same as a midrange hotel.

Certainly seems to be a good area - is there anything I should be concerned about? Any other info regarding restaurants, shops, tube station access, etc? Greatly appreciate any comments - will likely make my final decision tomorrow or the next day.
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Old May 6th, 2017, 05:36 PM
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No issues at all really. VERY close to Marylebone station and near enough to Edgware Rd stations so good for transport. Not far from the Wallace collection. Lots of restaurants in the area.
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Old May 6th, 2017, 06:47 PM
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We stayed in that area last summer (in a hotel) and just loved it. If we were ever to go for another extended stay, that would be where I'd be looking for a flat.

If you like yours, would you be willing to share the link?
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Old May 7th, 2017, 03:05 AM
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have you read any reviews of the flat?
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Old May 7th, 2017, 07:14 AM
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Well, Dukey, that is the only fly in the ointment I can seem to find - so far there are no reviews of this apartment on Flipkey.

The saving grace is that FlipKey offers "insurance" against the property not being available or if it has been misrepresented. We have rented in Prague and in London through FlipKey - it's a part of Trip Adviser - and were pleased with the process. Any payments, as well as damage deposits, go through FlipKey, and they also return the damage deposit on an agreed-upon date.

goddess - Here is the link to the apartment. From the description, it appears that the owner lives there throughout the winter months, and rents it during summer.

https://www.flipkey.com/london-condo...DF612CEB6E88.D
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Old May 7th, 2017, 07:35 AM
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The site froze up on me and wouldn't let me post -- trying again:

I don't use FlipKey (issues that they are part of TA -- that is just me) -- but even though the specific flat has no reviews, I notice the management company has many and they are very good. It may be that this is the first season it has been offered so no reviews yet.
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Old May 7th, 2017, 07:39 AM
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That apartment looks beautiful!

But it's not just that there are no reviews -- there's also no information about the owner/manager on that site even though it cites response time and says 'Based on 114 reviews and 17 properties'.

There are other Marylebone properties listed on the Flipkey site, if that's the area that interests you.
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Old May 7th, 2017, 08:10 AM
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goddess - I went ahead and rented this flat. Sent my request in last evening, and I heard back with two hours that it had been accepted. I made the initial deposit to FlipKey, and we are booked for our three nights in August.

I did see that there are no reviews, but like Janis, I was thinking perhaps it is the first year this rental is being offered. The management company does seem reputable, and supposedly they will be sending me further information in the next few days.

So ... I will try to remember to come back to this Fodors thread when we return from the UK in mid August and post about the flat. I will also put a review on the Flipkey site.

Crossing fingers, hoping for the best. It's only three nights out of a five-week trip, so even if it doesn't work out for the best, we will survive ;-)
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Old May 7th, 2017, 08:19 AM
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>

If you click on More Properties, there's some information, with reviews on other properties.

That there is a manager is good news. That's a degree of insurance, makes it less likely it's a scam. (As I understand it, Flipkey just takes listings from owners; they have no knowledge of the actual unit. They do guarantee your payment but if you arrive at the apartment, and there's no such address or nobody's there to meet you or it doesn't look like its photos or whatever, you'll have to find other accommodations on the spur of the moment.)

This apartment looks great. I'll make a note of it for our next visit to London.
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Old May 7th, 2017, 09:46 AM
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I have already had an email from the apartment manager - he has asked for our arrival time.

It seems legit - it is an actual management company with many rentals.

The fact that the rental fees go through FlipKey is a big plus for me. And, yes, I do understand that in the event that there was no such property, I would have to make my own arrangements and wait for a refund from FlipKey ... for me not a deal-breaker, as this three-day rental is a very small part of a five-week trip.

It looks as if there are other renters for this property before our dates - so hopefully if this place were to be a problem, FlipKey would have plenty of advance time to let us know and cancel our agreement.

I've rented twice through FlipKey, and had good experiences both times. And I like that they don't charge an additional fee to renters - like VRBO and Homeaway do now. I used to rent from them, but the last time, I was charged a pretty hefty additional fee. (And maybe FlipKey charges that too, but at least it's folded into the up-front rental price. VRBO and Homeaway are sneaky, and tack it on at the endin "small print.")
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Old May 7th, 2017, 10:07 AM
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Any Agency charges something, they aren't going to be free to the owner. But I agree, it should be in the listed price, or at least very clear. I've used a website where it was a percentage add-on but it was very clearly listed on the total cost page. VRBO and HOmeaway are the same company, I don't even know why they have two websites, maybe they used to be separate. The separate fee isn't in any smaller print than the main fee on VRBO, it's the same size as that and the taxes line item, and the total price including that fee is in even larger print. The only sneaky thing is it isn't included in the main listed price, you only get the total price including the fee when you request a booking, then it comes up (but before you send it).

Once you know that, it's just an extra step to go through to find it out, but I think you just sort of assume the price is about 10 pct higher than the main listing, that's all.

I don't understand not liking a listing because it's on a website that is owned by Tripadvisor versus one that is owned by some other for-profit company. Unless you had some particular grudge against TA, I guess.
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Old May 7th, 2017, 10:20 AM
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>>I don't understand . . .myself.
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Old May 7th, 2017, 10:21 AM
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Oh -- and it does look like a very nice flat!
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Old May 7th, 2017, 10:53 AM
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scd, well, it looks like a beautiful place and very likely everything will go smoothly. I'll be looking forward to reading your review both here and on Flipkey.

The walk down Marylebone High Street from Marylebone Road to Oxford Street is chock full of lovely shops, cafes and restaurants. Stop in at the very pretty Daunt's Bookstore. The Wallace Collection was closed when we were there but I hear it's a definite must.

If you have the time, London Walks, has a very good and very interesting walk of that neighbourhood.
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Old May 7th, 2017, 10:54 AM
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Christina - I think you are right about the fees with VRBO and Homeaway (and yes, I, too, think it's a little strange they have the same basic company with two different names and websites)... however, they didn't always charge the renter the extra fees - it was just the owner who paid - and when they started doing it, it just came out of the blue. I had previously rented many times from them, and was kind of blindsided when the rather substantial fee was added to my last rental with them without any apparent disclosure - and I mean "last" in that there have been no more. I think now it's more obvious - they did get a lot of flack for the way they initiated the fees. They totally lost my business forever when they did that to me, so it's not an issue for me anymore. I won't even look at their websites.

Janis - I have gmail, and I don't ever look at the "promotion" site of my emails, so I guess I miss all the junk from TA, and every other auto-mail from businesses. I know some of their reviews are not authentic, but I think it's not super hard to weed them out, and I often use TA to figure out if I want to buy/do/go/rent.

I hope the apartment is as nice as it looks - it ended up costing less than the Marriott Hotel in the Marylebone area - and the Marriott had some poor reviews, so hopefully this will be a good choice.
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Old May 7th, 2017, 10:59 AM
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goddess - Thanks for the neighborhood info - we must have been posting at the same time. I have taken the London Walks in the past - so will definitely look into this one.
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