Located in South Kensington, seconds away from the tube station and in the heart of one of London’s coolest neighbourhoods, Cheval Harrington Court is the latest development by London-based luxury serviced apartment company Cheval Residences. I have stayed in apartments maybe twice or three times in my life (and all were pleasant experiences), but I was very keen to try this new place, in one of my monthly ‘London stays’.
Needless to say, it is not a hotel – so ignore the word ‘hotel’ from now on. I accepted this invite as I believed it would be a solid luxury stay alternative in London, by a company who has undoubtedly developed a great reputation around town, and different from staying in a ‘unique’ apartment rental.
– Was there any pre-arrival communication by the hotel with myself via email or social media?
Yes indeed. My stay was organised a couple of weeks before Cheval Harrington Court actually opened and the dates and details were set without any issue.
– Did I try to engage the hotel via Twitter? Did the hotel interact with me and made me feel welcome/special?
I did indeed, and this continued throughout my stay.
– Has the hotel tried to gather any personal information (e.g. preferences) prior to my stay?
I did not have any special requests, as per normal.
– The wow factor! What was the hotel decor style?
If I am going to be honest, as I always am, the lobby wasn’t 100% impressive. There was still a fair bit of work going on (cosmetic, of course), but I felt it a bit cold and not with a lot of personality.
– How quick and efficient was the hotel check-in?
It was absolutely fine – I had a normal hotel-style form to fill and also left my credit card details for any extras. I was explained how the apartment worked, escorted to it and shown around. I also noticed that the apartment had a little balcony, so I asked for a key (which I received after signing a form stating that I wouldn’t try to jump).
– Was I addressed by name once reservation has been located? (it is all about the small details, some others are outstanding with this, and I love it, like I do when I board an airplane)
I was when I checked in, but not again throughout my stay.
– Did I get an upgrade from my confirmed pre-booked room type?
I wasn’t sure what room I was supposed to have – and was delighted with our 2 bedroom apartment.
– Did I feel genuinely welcomed by the hotel staff?
Everyone I encountered was very pleasant.
– Luggage – how many people did I have to tip before the luggage made it safely to my room? This is cultural, I know
I had a small carry-on and was able to take it to the room.
– Wi-fi – was I told anything about it? Was there a charge?
I was told about it when I asked, and given the password code which was exclusive to my apartment (meaning I had my own router and wouldn’t be sharing it with any other guests).
– First impressions – décor, size and wow factor
Although I thought the corridors were also somewhat clinical (but smelled lovely, for the record), I was very impressed with our 2 bedroom, 2 bathroom apartment. It was spacious, had lots of natural light and tastefully decorated. You had a small entrance hall which led directly to the lounge/dining room, to your left you had the second bedroom and bathroom (which wasn’t ensuite and perfect for non-staying guests), to the right you had the kitchen and finally, the master bedroom and ensuite bathroom.
– Welcome amenity
I took longer than normal to inspect the room, as I was quite curious about what I would find. The first thing that I saw was a lovely welcome basket, which included Nespresso pods, biscuits, tea, and other staples. I thought it was very nice. When I got to the kitchen, I saw fresh bread on the counter and in the fridge fresh milk, still and sparkling water, butter and…a bottle of champagne. I thought things were off to a great start indeed.
I was particularly impressed with the kitchen – it was modern and had everything you would need for a shorter or longer stay and one thing I have to confess I did not expect was the vast collection of quality glasses. They were seriously very good (and plenty) – from water to proper wine and champagne glasses. I was also intrigued by the in-room dining menu, which came from a catering company nearby which clearly catered to western, middle eastern and asian customers. The selection was outstanding – I was tempted to try, but to be honest, there are so many great restaurants nearby, that I just picked somewhere different each day.
– The bed
You cannot fault this bedroom anywhere in the world. The bed was comfortable and I liked the pillows, the bed linen was of very good quality and I like grey, what can I say? The only thing that I only noticed later (and throughout my stay), was the noise from the street at night. The apartments are obviously double-glazed and following guest feedback they are to be quadruple-glazed very shortly. This was the only thing that didn’t make for a perfect stay and I am glad that it is being addressed.
– Closet/Wardrobe – proper hangers or those annoying ones where you need a PhD to get them out one by one? This is a personal pet peeve of mine. I can’t stand them.
Absolutely great, with LOTS of proper hangers. I also found laundry bags in the chest of drawers.
– Iphone Charger/Dock
There was an iHome dock, which I did not use, in the lounge, and a clock in the bedroom.
– Bathrobes and slippers
Yes, but I did not use.
– Coffee and Tea
Yes, including a Nespresso coffee maker. I did not try it.
– Free bottled water
Yes, and replenished daily, both still and sparkling.
– Magazine selection – had some nice surprises and doesn’t happen often enough!
I did not find anything.
– Working area
I used the dining table in the lounge as my working area, and I did spend a fair bit of time on it. It was close to power sockets and had comfortable chairs. There was no dedicated working area in the bedrooms (just like one wouldn’t have at home!).
– Power sockets in useful places – we have more and more devices and we know where we want them! By the bed, by the working area.
There were plenty of sockets around the apartment and in actually useful places.
– First impressions – décor, size and wow factor
It was absolutely fine – beige and white is a winning combination and everything was of the highest spec.
– Bath, shower and taps – I am looking for Duravits and Hansgrohes (or other fab brands) around the world. How fab was the shower? And a little pet peeve.. was I able to operate the shower without asking Mr. O for help?
We had a bath (with a shower) and everything was Duravit and Hansgrohe and worked very well. I did master the shower without any help, which was just as well as Mr. O only joined me on the second night.
– Towels – yes, please! How many and how soft and lovely?
– Toiletries – own brand, super brand, baby ones or proper ones? I shall find out!
I loved the Arran aromatics products, which I hadn’t seen in years. They were not baby sized and they were replaced every day. My friend Fi came for a drink one night and as she loves them so much, I gave her some to take home.
– Amenity kit – I don’t want more sewing kits thank you very much, but I will need a shower cap.
We had everything we needed.
– Hairdryer – is it a human one, or just something stuck to a wall that only makes noise?
Good quality hairdryer, found in the bedroom.
There is no bar or restaurant – you can obviously cook your own meals and have every means to do so. I chose to go out for all meals, as there was so much choice in the area (some great new finds too!). You can also order meals in.
– How good and reliable was the wi-fi?
It was very good and worked very well. Needless to say, it is free of charge.
– Did the hotel interact with me via Twitter during my stay?
They did indeed and we had a bit of fun.
Absolutely fantastic – literally 1 or 2 minutes from South Kensington underground station, with a taxi rank outside the door.
– Cost – rooms starting from…
For short stays, a 1 bedroom apartment costs from £170+VAT per night, and a 2 bedroom apartment costs from £330+VAT per night. Includes daily maid service.
– Would I recommend it to my best friend?
– Would I stay again?
I would indeed. I had a very pleasant stay and with the window issue being sorted, I wouldn’t even think twice.
Have you visited this hotel? What were your thoughts?
Disclaimer: I was a guest of Cheval Residences during this stay, but hopefully you will see that this has not influenced my thoughts about the property.