These terraced houses are dark grey and a look a bit stern, which I think is rather appropriate for London’s university district! You’re a block north of the British Museum and a couple of blocks south of the British Library. It’s also an easy walk to the restaurants and shops of Soho and Covent Garden. Goodge Street station is your nearest tube - a couple of minutes' stroll along Chenies Street on to Gower Street.
The street is pretty busy with traffic, so ask for a back room if you’re a light sleeper. The owners are steadily updating the rooms - double-glazing, new carpets and flatscreen TVs are already in, while the tiny pod-style bathrooms are steadily being taken out and replaced by proper tiling. Expect room sizes to vary, as with every historic townhouse. There’s free Wi-Fi throughout.
The house is a couple of hundred years’ old, which leaves no room for a lift. I found the décor charming but a little confused - there are sweetly bling touches like the silver lizard on the hall table, the handsome and comfy lounge (with free internet station for guests) has a black-and-white print of the New York skyline, but there are Pre-Raphaelite prints in the hall (the Pre-Raphaelite Brotherhood was formed at no.7 in 1848, where Millais painted Elizabeth Siddall for his famous Ophelia). The sheltered back lawn (with resident canary) is open to guests.
Eating and drinking
Full English breakfast is served in a basement dining room from 7.30am to 9am (8am to 9.30am Saturday and Sunday).
Friendly and accommodating.
Who stays there
A spot for tourists after a bargain, especially those keen on the bookish pleasures of Bloomsbury and the British Museum.
Payment is routinely taken the day before departure. Breakfast and tax is included in the room rate.
- Culture vultures
Pros & Cons
- Comfy lounge
- Good prices for central location
- ‘Pod’ bathrooms still in many rooms
- Some small rooms