Steeped in rich history dating back to the Roman Era, the capital of England, London is a splendid world city set on the banks of River Thames. Being the most visited city in the world it has a lot to offer tourists in terms of hospitality and fine dining.
London Hotels – Past to Present
Home to iconic monuments and heritage buildings, London had a handful of lodgings and inns before the onset of the 19th century. Club accommodation and coaching inns gave way to modern hotels in the early 19th century. However, until the mid-19th century, London Hotels were mostly small, but then the railway companies took the lead in building impressive hotels (seen as status symbols) such as the London Paddington, The Landmark London and The Grosvenor. Other monumental hotels built in the Victorian period include The Savoy, Claridge’s and The Ritz. In the 1970’s London became a favourite tourist destination and this led to an increase in construction of new accommodation. The style of the accommodation diversified into minimalistic properties, boutique hotels and some of London’s splendid vintage office buildings were also renovated into hotels. This is when London opened its doors to five-star destinations such as the Four Seasons Canary Wharf and the Marriot West India Quay.
Diversity in London Hotels
Presently London boasts of a wide array of places to lay your head, ranging from heritage luxury destinations such as The Corinthia right down to budget hotel chains such as Travel Inn and Travelodge. Taking your pick from the available London hotels is now as difficult as finding a needle in a haystack!
- Luxury Destinations: Owing to its rich heritage and history, London is home to the world’s best luxury hotels such as the Mandarin Oriental Hyde Park and The Wellesley London. Guests frequenting such establishments include, royalty, film stars and presidents.
- Boutique Hotels: London Boutique hotels exude a charm of their own and the experience of staying in such a place is an unforgettable one. They tend to be completely unique and cutting edge, offering service with a personal touch.
- House Stay: A relatively new concept for travellers visiting London is that of becoming a paying guest in someone’s home. This is a great way to get insider knowledge of the local area and maybe try some home cooked local food.
- Budget Rooms: London has numerous options offered by budget hotel chains which tend to be basic no frills accommodation. However these are great for those watching the wallet, bearing in mind you will be staying in one of the most expensive cities in the world!
- Hostels: Backpackers and tourists travelling on a very tight budget can stay at one of London’s hostels such as RestUp and Palmers Lodge Hillspring, where rooms are offered dormitory style. This option is the best for like-minded tourists who like to socialise with each other and explore the city together.
Travellers who don’t mind the cold, stand to gain the most. If you visit in the winter months of January and February when room rates are at their lowest there are some great deals to be had. Though don’t forget that December is Christmas time in London and though it is the most expensive time of the year, it is one of the best and most beautiful.