- Introduction: An English Summer
- Selecting between the British & Irish Visa
- Review: JW Marriott Mumbai Sahar
- Review: AI 131 Mumbai to London Heathrow, Business Class, Boeing 787-8
- Review: Plaza Premium Lounge, Arrivals Area, London Heathrow Terminal 2
- Review: London Marriott Park Lane, Deluxe Room
After an average one night stay at the London Marriott Park Lane hotel, we moved to the Hyatt Regency London – Churchill. Since the hotel is just a few hundred meters from the Marriott we chose to walk down, bags in tow.
We booked this hotel through Ajay’s World of Hyatt Account at 25,000 points per night for 3 nights, and also applied a World of Hyatt Club Lounge Access certificate, which ensured that we would get access to the lounge on arrival. For a hotel that quotes over 400 GBP a night, this was the perfect place to burn some points.
The Hyatt Regency is located at Portman Square which is a quiet street just 2 minutes off from the Oxford Street. It was a 10 minutes walk through the bustling shopping street and on arrival I noticed a very imposing entrance where a group of doormen wearing long Churchill hats were waiting for guests.
As soon as we arrived one of the bellboys helped us with our luggage and ushered us in to the Lobby. The hotel has a large spacious lobby with imposing marble pillars. At the end of the lobby there was a seating area with comfortable sofas and a contemporary fireplace. There were chandeliers on the ceiling and I noticed that the public areas were brightly lit and well decorated with art work on the walls.
Check-in at this hotel is offered in the lobby, as well as the Club Lounge. However, one needs to request someone in the Lobby to bring you to the Club Lounge, which is a process with some friction in it.
Hence, we headed straight to the World of Hyatt check-in desk. While we were checking in the Hotel Manager came to greet us. During our short conversation he mentioned that he tries to say hello to maximum World of Hyatt members who check-in at the hotel.
Also, a sweet thing we heard was that just the week before our trip we were at Grand Hyatt Mumbai, and their executive chef had just moved a while ago from Hyatt Regency Churchill, so he left a note with his colleagues about our impeding arrival.
Even the agent at check in was pleasant, prompt and professional. She thanked us for our loyalty to Hyatt and mentioned that we had been upgraded from the entry level room to a newly-renovated view room. Though she informed us that the room allocated was still being serviced. We chose to stow our bags and go out for a bit, given we had tickets booked for a musical that afternoon.
The agent handed us the welcome letter detailing the World of Hyatt benefits and hotel facilities we could access during our stay. Ajay requested her to have it sent to our room, although subsequently it never made it there. It was beautiful sunny day and we took the opportunity to use our time strolling through the Marylebone neighborhood.
The warm hospitality at check-in immediately set the tone for our stay which was vastly different from our check-in experience at the Marriott Park Lane.
During conversation with the hotel manager I also learnt that in 2014 this hotel had suffered a explosion in the kitchen and after that the hotel has gone through a multi – million pound refurbishment in 2015. Ajay had been there a couple of weeks before this event, and he postponed writing the review till his next trip, which is now.
It was visibly evident that the entire hotel is inspired by Sir Winston Churchill and the theme reflects through and through. There were books in public spaces curated to portray the Prime Minister’s interest in art, travel, food, etc.There is artwork and pictures all across the hotel and the lobby reflecting the daily life of Sir Winston Churchill.
There’s a glamorous bar on the ground floor designed as homage to one of the country’s most iconic political figures and it’s called The Churchill Bar. The bar menu also includes some of Churchill’s favorite dishes like the smoked salmon and beef wellington.
On our way to the lift lobby I spotted a collectibles shop run by Concierge & Co. where one can buy Churchill mugs, books and other stuff.
Even the lobby and corridors leading to the rooms were lined up with art work depicting Churchill’s life.
As soon I entered the room, the first thing that stood out was that it was fairly spacious. Voila! I no longer had to squabble for space open up my suitcase. The room was tastefully done in greys again, just like most of London is I presume. I could have really done with some more lighting at this hotel in the rooms.
With a king size plush bed, a work desk, a lounge chair by the window and a dedicated space to open out bags there was ample space to walk around in the room. The work desk had more than enough plug points to put everything we needed up for charge at the same time.
There was the usual mini bar and an electric kettle to make instant tea and coffee. I did miss the Nespresso machine from our previous hotel though.
The window in the room looked out on the road side and we had a view of the Portman Garden across the street. People did play tennis there in the evenings.
In the room, when we arrived, there was a welcome note from the hotel manager placed along with a bottle of champagne and a plate of chocolate dipped strawberries. I am a believer that recognition does not cost a hotel much, but creates that wow feeling that makes you want to come back. I was specially impressed by the handwritten note on the card.
Following the rest of the design philosophy, the bathroom was done up in a minimalist form as well. To start with, they had a ToTo toilet.
In the shower cubicle, there was a haṅd held and a rain shower that were easy to operate and had a good water pressure.
The bathroom amenities were furnished with London’s upscale Molton Brown brand, a favorite of mine.
Count our luck out on this one, we did face a second bout of electrical malfunction where water started dripping from the air conditioner on the second day of our stay. Once we advised housekeeping the room was immediately attended to and the maintenance guys fixed the problem in ten minutes. I can’t say enough how I don’t like malfunctions in hotel stays, because hey, you always have your own home to take care of with the fused lamps and the air conditioner filter needing a cleanse.
While everything about the room was great the house keeping was quite sloppy. Throughout our stay turn-down service would happen after 9 p.m., every day. Used towels were not replaced one day, and a used coffee cup which was put in the work-desk dustbin, was not cleared out for two days.
The Regency Club Lounge
The Lounge at the hotel is on the Club Floor, which is the 8th floor in this case. The lounge had 2 different sections: one admits children and the second section is adults only.
It was the holiday season hence understandably the family lounge was very busy. Although the spread is the same in both sections, the bigger lounge opens up much earlier for breakfast. The main lounge is open 7 AM through 11 PM and breakfast is offered 7 AM through 11 AM. The smaller adults only lounge opens at 8 AM and closes down at 9 PM. In between both the lounge sections, there is a check-in desk with some of the most helpful staff of the hotel to help out with requests.
During our stay we visited the adults lounge in the evenings and had early breakfast in the family lounge.
The adults-only section is spacious with walls done in grey tones just like the rest of the hotel. The lounge had comfortable sofas, tables and chairs. There was a shelf stacked with books and magazines next to the wall.
In the evenings there was a large selection of crudités, dips, salads and cold cuts offered every day. The prawn cocktail and the smoked duck salad are worth a special mention. On a daily basis, there would be tonnes of nachos, bread sticks and leafy greens, cheese board accompanied with fruits and raisins. There was a daily rotation of desserts as well.
Apart from this there 2 hot appetizers were served on the table every day. I tried the lamb quiche on one day and chicken-stuffed Gyozas another day, both were delicious.
While the wine-list for the evenings was top-notch, Ajay was not very impressed with the spirits. They could have definitely done better with the spirits.
The first morning we headed to the larger family lounge for breakfast. This section had a larger seating space. At the end of the lounge is a meeting or a conference room of sorts which had been turned into a private dining room. After 11 AM, one could conduct meetings there as well.
The breakfast spread at the lounge is better than the usual continental spreads, i.e., was not basic. They had the usual cereals, choice of juices and breakfast bakery. The daily hot items on the buffet included sausages, bacon, scrambled eggs, hash brown and baked beans.
Once we were seated, a waitstaff approached us asked if we would like to have eggs cooked to our liking. I tried the omelette and it was done well done just to my liking. They also brought us coffee and tea to our liking when we asked.
Our server at breakfast was chatty and when she learnt that we were on vacation she promptly offered us suggestions of things we should do in the city and recommended a few places to eat.
Overall the lounge was spacious. The morning and the evening spread was scrumptious with a good variety and staff were warm and friendly.
There is a small fitness center on the second floor of the hotel. Pro tip: Avoid taking rooms on the second floor as the spa and gym keep the floor busy with foot traffic .
Given the beautiful London weather we chose to go for a run in the Hyde park which is only ten mins away from the hotel.
The hotel also has great dining options like the famous Churchill Bar and Terrace where the interiors have references to young Winston Churchill and his wife Clementine. The hotel houses a Michelin-star Italian restaurant named Locanda Locatelli. Even the main restaurant, The Montagu has been named after the famous British social reformer Elizabeth Montagu. They serve up farm-to-table fare, and are the choice of breakfast if you do not have access to the lounge. With our limited time inside the hotel, we never managed to eat in any of the restaurants, choosing a meal on town at Dishoom instead.
Our stay at the Hyatt Regency Churchill was a fabulous one. For a shopaholics like me Selfridges is a two minutes walk. Hyde Park is a ten minutes stroll, and also the Marble Arch station is right about there.
The Bond Street station is also five minutes walking distance. We walked down to West End , Covent Garden and Soho from the hotel. And one great thing about the hotel is that even though it is accessible to all touristy and non-touristy hang outs, the hotel in itself is in a quiet street.
The Hyatt Regency London – The Churchill is a category 6 hotel. The standard rooms during our stay were priced at an average of 400 GBP/ 515 USD/ 33,000 INR a night. We chose to stay 3 nights on points and spent a total of 75,000 WoH points, which was very good value for the points we spent here.
Hyatt Regency London – The Churchill is a stunning hotel with a lot of British history. The location is perfect given the fact that the hotel is on a quiet street and and yet we were in the centre of the action in London. The lounge spread was delightful and the spread expansive enough for us to skip dinner some nights. We really could not figure why was this a Hyatt Regency, and not a Park Hyatt instead?
The hotel staff were friendly and courteous at all touch points. Whether it was at check-in, the doormen, the lounge staff everyone was chatty and helpful. For 25,000 points this was a real good deal and it is one hotel Ajay and I would love to come back to during future visits to London.