Not London’s most attractive district, but it looks on to Norfolk Square rather than the busy roads and is very close to Paddington rail/tube station. Only a short walk to Hyde Park and an easy tube journey to the sights and shops of central London.
A lot of thought has gone into making the most of restricted space in the rooms, so you get a bracing power shower in every room but no bathtub, and a desk and sofa arranged under the flatscreen TV at the end of your double bed. They also squeeze in a minifridge and tea- and coffee-making facilities, plus free Wi-Fi. Unusually in this price range, a free newspaper is delivered to your door. I actually liked the smallest rooms on the top (fourth) floor of the building best - the sloped attic roofs gave them a bit of character that offset the lack of space. Negatives? I’m not at all sure about the décor. In mixing big black-and-white prints of the local area in times gone by, with psychedelic swirls in the cupboards and acid bright colour highlights on the fabrics, plus a strip of blue sky and white fluffy clouds along each corridor, it makes less of four design ideas than it could have made out of two.
Another décor mish-mash - pure white with almost UV blue lighting at reception feels closer to a clinic than a hotel, but there are nice easy chairs in the darker toned bar-brasserie area and, up the stairs, a sweet little rear terrace, its few chairs mostly occupied by smokers on my visit.
Eating and drinking
The Phi Brasserie, which makes a big pitch for offering organic and seasonal British food, didn’t really grab me, but it does the job if you’re too tired to venture into Notting Hill or Marylebone for the better eating options there. There’s not much good eating to recommend around Paddington itself, although there are some reasonable pubs.
The hotel’s basement ‘Phitness Studio’ (Phi and the Golden Mean are another design theme here I might have been inclined to leave on the drawing board) has a variety of machines and weights.
Direct, friendly and helpful.
Who stays there
Mostly business, naturally, but a decent leisure choice given the prices.
Prices include VAT but not breakfast.
- High-Speed Internet
- Room Service
- Business travellers
- Culture vultures
- Design and architecture
Pros & Cons
- Reasonable prices
- Good service
- Eccentric décor
- Small rooms