When you think about the best views in London most people point to the Sky Garden in the Walkie Talkie or The View from The Shard. Those in the know might say Primrose Hill or Ally Pally, but few will have experienced the thrill of waking up to a panoramic picture across the capital as the curtains raise and the sun comes up.
That, in a nutshell, is what the Royal Lancaster offers in an unparalleled capacity thanks to its idyllic location and unique design. The wrap around windows offer views across the city, from Wembley Stadium to Canary Wharf and beyond. For the price of a ticket up the Shard or a meal in the Sky Garden you can get comparatively the same thing from the comfort of your own room, offering more safety and privacy than is afforded elsewhere.
Reopening following a brief closure, the hotel’s General Manager, Sally Beck and her team, have worked hard to create a safe and welcoming space for guests to return to. Beck says “we are so thrilled to be opening our doors once again to the public, but our priority is the safety of our staff and guests and so we have implemented a number of changes, which has awarded us the AA Covid Confident Accreditation and the VisitBritain ‘We’re Good to Go’ mark. Both these certifications indicate that an establishment has put in place the necessary team training, regular sanitisation and social distancing features, amongst other measures.”
Eager to drink in some of the best views in London from the safety of a Covid-secure hotel, we popped along to see how things have changed.
You really couldn’t ask for more as far as location is concerned when it comes to picking your perfect central London stay. Located on the doorstep of Lancaster Gate tube station – a five minute ride away from Oxford Circus – it offers fantastic connectivity to the city coupled with the peace and tranquillity of Hyde Park, which is a two minute walk away. Local pubs and restaurants abound and the bougie neighbourhood of Notting Hill is within walking distance, offering the best of all worlds.
Best known for their panoramic views, guests at Royal Lancaster London who book a Deluxe Room or categories above will be delighted by the wrap around windows with views as far as the eye can see. All 411 rooms feature a king sized bed, comfy sofa, smart TV, marble bathrooms with rain showers and White Company amenities, whilst suites also include separate lounge areas and in The Royal Suite a separate dining area and deep set marble bath.
Safety was clearly made the number one priority at Royal Lancaster on reopening, and so it showed on our visit. Sanitising stations were placed at the entrance and staff were equipped with full personal protective gear. Pens, once used, were placed in separate boxes at reception and regular cleaning in the communal areas ensured safe transition to your room where you are welcomed with Covid kits and handy messages on appliances to show they had been disinfected.
Unlike many hotels in London, Royal Lancaster London offers free on-site parking for hotel guests, which is a godsend for anyone arriving by car. The gym is currently closed due to Covid, but other services may enhance your stay, such as the new XR SmartStudio which allows you to host events virtually with live audiences and attendees – a neat addition for businesses hamstrung by new restricted ways of working.
Food and drink 4/5
Regrettably, the hotel’s restaurants Nipa Thai and Island Grill remain closed to guests, leaving a more limited lounge menu that can be ordered to the room. A selection of pastas, burgers, steaks and salad make for an adequate selection made all the more enjoyable by a cityscape backdrop. The breakfast, served overlooking Hyde Park, is exceptional, with a range of pastries and yoghurts a precursor to a reduced, albeit perfectly adequate, À la carte menu.
Jack was a guest of The Royal Lancaster. Room rates start from £199 inc VAT for a Deluxe room with free cancellation until 2pm on the day of arrival.