The Rockwell is at the Earl’s Court end of busy Cromwell Road, which keeps the prices reasonable, but you’re still only 10 minutes’ walk from the Natural History Museum, V&A and Science Museum in South Kensington. Earl’s Court, the nearest Underground station, is five minutes’ walk.
I find the room décor at the Rockwell a little bland, and it certainly won’t upset anyone. The facilities are solid without being inspiring: free broadband, flatscreen TV and air con. Rooms vary in size, as with any townhouse conversion, but the doubles I saw were good for the price. Triple glazing means traffic noise shouldn’t be a problem on the front, but rear rooms look down into the smartly designed patio garden, with its potted olive trees and pretty lights at night. For a treat, the lower ground floor Garden Rooms each have a little terrace with table and chairs beneath the glass bridge that connects the hotel and garden. For single travellers on a budget, I recommend the tiny top-floor one-bed rooms - they’ve skylights instead of windows and are decorated by theatre playbills to enhance the slightly bohemian feel.
More remarkable than the rooms. The neat way these two townhouses have been joined means the ground floor has a lot of well-designed, handsome public space - comfy lounge and eating areas, as well as the back garden with its potted trees and patio lights. Surprisingly chic after the kerfuffle outside.
Eating and drinking
The restaurant and bar were very quiet when I last visited. Located at the back of the hotel (French windows give on to the patio garden), the room is decorated in rich colours. Food runs from crowd-pleasers like fish and chips to more ambitious dishes such as herb-crusted sea bass with a julienne of vegetables - enjoyable, but perhaps overpriced at £17. I’d head west into Notting Hill or east to Marylebone or Soho to find good restaurants.
Crisply efficient but friendly.
Who stays there
The Rockwell’s a relaxed place for business custom during the week, but a bit out of the way. Good for sightseers wanting to avoid paying a premium for a central hotel.
Continental breakfast is £9.50 or a full English (£12.50) extra.
- High-Speed Internet
- Room Service
- Business travellers
- Culture vultures
Pros & Cons
- Patio garden
- Chic public spaces
- Busy road outside
- Unexciting room decor