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Royal National Hotel or President Hotel-London????

Royal National Hotel or President Hotel-London????

Sep 6th, 2001, 08:37 AM
London Bound
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Royal National Hotel or President Hotel-London????

Has anyone stayed at either the Royal National or President Hotels located in Bloomsbury/London? If so, any comments?

Any other "low cost" recommendations? I'd rather spend my vacation dollars standing up up rather than lying down!!
Sep 6th, 2001, 08:50 AM
Posts: n/a
I've had a few friends stay at the Royal National hotel and all the reports I heard were bad. However if you're doing a contiki trip then that is of course where the tours depart from so convinence is something. My advice would to be avoid the Royal National if at all possible.
Sep 6th, 2001, 09:04 AM
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My wife and I stayed there in '92. It's big and not-too-clean. We stayed later at Harlingford House, a few blocks away and then about the same price. We liked it better.
Sep 6th, 2001, 09:18 AM
Jean Valjean
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The Royal National is big, extremely noisy and dirty. Location wise it is ok. Can't comment on the other one.

Maybe someone here remembers the name of another hotel, also on Russel Square that is also used by Contiki. It is smaller, cleaner, and a bit more expensive (maybe 80 or 90 pounds per night)

Sep 6th, 2001, 09:40 AM
Posts: n/a

The other hotel Contiki uses is the Imperial Hotel.

Unless your doing a tour starting from the Royal National I wouldn't stay there.

London Bound

You asked about other recommendations. I stayed at the Ridgemount in May and will stay there again next time I'm in London. It's about 5 minutes (if that) walk away from Royal National. For a single with shared facilites I paid 33 pounds, and for a double shared facilites I paid 50. English breakfast included.
Sep 6th, 2001, 12:53 PM
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London Bound,
Unfortunately I did stay at the Royal National in '97 for 4 days when chaperoning an EF student orchestra tour of England/Wales. (Luckily our accomodations elsewhere were much nicer!) You'll see a large number of student groups there because of the rock-bottom budget nature of this property. Expect a huge building with confusing corridors that go on forever and very basic dormitory style rms. They gave us our room keys on foot long metal sticks-no money spent on replacing lost keys there...The continental breakfast, which one has go and pick up at a station on each floor, consisted of a very watered down liquid only ever so slightly resembling O.J. , terrible coffee and a hard roll with a pad of butter. Much better to forgo it and even the buffet brk in the coffee shop and find the patisserie only a couple of blocks away. The only plus of staying there? -quick access to the tube at Russell Square. If you have another alternative, please take it!
Sep 6th, 2001, 01:12 PM
Posts: n/a
I stayed at the Royal National just last November and I'd like to disagree with some of the comments on this thread. True, it is a very large hotel. And true, it is *severely* lacking in charm and the corridors DO go on forever. But our keys were the "credit card" type. And breakfast was served in the restaurant downstairs. We had croissants (not as good as in Paris, but edible) or rolls, tea, decent (though not great) coffee, and juice. You could purchase a mediocre full-English breakfast also. The location is excellent, close to a tube stop and very close to the British Museum and Russell Square. The rooms were basic, but we found ours very clean, dry, warm, and not noisy. I did not expect much more for the price we paid. The only noise problem came when the room became so warm that we had to open the window. That let noise in from the busy street. If I stayed there again, I'd ask for a room over the courtyard. There is a decent pub on the ground floor, with good fish and chips. And there is a travel office on the premises where you can arrange tours if you want. If this is your choice, I'd take it, realizing that you are getting what you pay for and that you don't spend that much time in the room anyway. If you do stay there and want to console yourself one night with a slight splurge, I highly recommend Poon's, a Chinese restaurant right down the street. Excellent food, great service, but slightly pricey.
Sep 6th, 2001, 03:43 PM
Posts: n/a
I have stayed at President Hotel some years ago while leading a large group and was ok. Functional rooms, excellent location (next door to Russel Square tube) and decent English breakfast (buffet style). I'm staying there again next month on a business trip. Both President and Royal National belong to the same group that also includes Imperial, Tavistock, Bedford and very basic County. There is little to distinguish them, as all are impersonal hotels geared to tour groups, but for their location they are good value with efficient staff.
Sep 6th, 2001, 04:40 PM
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The Tavistock is a decent hotel, reasonably priced, clean and in a great location. But no real charm. If it's any incentive Lord and Lady Tavistock own the hotel (you might have seen them on the PBS series). Also, it's a 2 star but recommended by British Airways. Be careful about walking through Russell Square late at night, it's known for its pickpockets and is also a haven for hypodermic needle users. Last I heard the Square was being gated off so there would be no access at night, but I'm not sure if that is true.
Sep 7th, 2001, 05:52 AM
London Bound
Posts: n/a
Thanks to all who posted.

Much to think about.


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