The St. Pancras Renaissance in London, opened a couple of years ago, quickly became one of the city’s grand dame hotels. Why? Located at St. Pancras International train station (where you can board the Eurostar and be on your way to somewhere exciting in Continental Europe), it is a city landmark. I was keen to see how the building had been restored and have good things to report indeed.
– Was there any pre-arrival communication by the hotel with myself via email or social media?
There was indeed. The St. Pancras Renaissance has a good social media presence and seemed to be very excited I was coming to stay, since the day I got my invite.
– Did I try to engage the hotel via Twitter? Did the hotel interact with me and made me feel welcome/special?
Absolutely – and as I have been “following” the hotel for a few months, I noticed that they always have something nice to say to guests who interact with them. Post-stay, the hotel, which is part of Marriott (Renaissance brand), also interacted with me once they saw some tweets and photos.
– Has the hotel tried to gather any personal information (e.g. preferences) prior to my stay?
Not really, but for a one-night stay, there wasn’t much to find out!
– The wow factor! What was the hotel decor style?
I loved the hotel from the moment I set foot in its doors. I loved the lobby – it felt so spacious, yet warm and inviting! I also loved to see how busy it was – people were chatting and seemed to be enjoying themselves. There were a few bottles of champagne on the go, so clearly people were having a good time.
– How quick and efficient was the hotel check-in?
Was very good indeed. Quick, efficient and professional. I loved that I was escorted to my room (believe me, wouldn’t be easy to find it otherwise, and it is a staple for all guests staying at the Chambers Rooms).
– 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)
Yes indeed. Mrs. O’Reilly was in the house.
– Did I get an upgrade from my confirmed pre-booked room type?
I am not quite sure as there wasn’t a pre-confirmation. I was given a junior suite at the Chambers part of the hotel, which is the “old” part of the hotel. The “more modern” part, called Barlow House, has mostly standard rooms.
– Did I feel genuinely welcomed by the hotel staff?
Yes, and this is one thing I noticed throughout my stay. Everyone was really really nice.
– Luggage – how many people did I have to tip before the luggage made it safely to my room? This is cultural, I know!
No one, I took my own carry-on with me to the room.
– Wi-fi – was I told anything about it? Was there a charge?
There is a charge for Barlow House guests, but not for Chambers guests – it is included.
– First impressions – décor, size and wow factor
I loved it! It was warm and inviting! It wasn’t huge but it looked really really nice. I had a small living room, a great bedroom and bathroom and the most amazing view!
– Welcome amenity
Very thoughtful too – fruit, chocolates and water.
– The bed
Very nice indeed!
– 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.
Not a problem in sight – also, lovely “shoe” and “laundry” bags.
Yes yes yes! It was all there!
– Bathrobes and slippers
They were there but, as usual, I didn’t use them.
– Coffee and Tea
There was a Nespresso machine with plenty of pods.
– Free bottled water
Yes, replenished at night time too, with the turndown service. Displayed in stylish hotel glass bottles (a good idea, I thought!)
– Magazine selection – had some nice surprises and doesn’t happen often enough!
Very good indeed – plenty of reading material AND great coffee table books.
– 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.
Not a problem here, there were even some by the bed. It is worth noting that this is a quite recent hotel.
– First impressions – décor, size and wow factor
The bathroom wasn’t huge, but was really nice.
– 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?
Absolutely, all there for my enjoyment. And I was even able to use the shower without assistance! We had a bath with a great shower
– Towels – yes, please! How many and how soft and lovely?
Lots and changed with turndown service.
– Toiletries – own brand, super brand, baby ones or proper ones? I shall find out!
Hum… best toiletries I have seen in a while. They were REN and full size (and for once I took them home, I will admit!). I also thought it was a cool brand association (REN and @RENhotels) – could have been a coincidence.. or not!
– Amenity kit – I don’t want more sewing kits thank you very much, but I will need a shower cap.
It was all there!
– Hairdryer – is it a human one, or just something stuck to a wall that only makes noise?
I honestly didn’t use it, but also saw that the hairdryer looked like it was good.
– Décor of breakfast room
This is where it gets interesting! Breakfast (and any other drinks or meals) take place at the Chambers Lounge, which is complimentary to guests staying at the Chambers Rooms. It is a nicer “Club Lounge” than usual and I really liked this place.
– The spread (inc yumminess)
It was very nice and had everything that we needed. If I wanted a full cooked breakfast, I could have used the normal breakfast room.
– Cost (I have seen a hotel charging €75 for breakfast – a tad much, maybe?)
Breakfast at the Chambers is free for Chambers guests.
Bar & Restaurant
We had pre-dinner drinks (yummy cocktails) and dinner at the Booking Office – which we really enjoyed. It is also worth noting that the bar is open until 3am (an interesting surprise).
– How good and reliable was the wi-fi?
It worked perfectly well
Located at St. Pancras International Station, it is perfect if you are going to or from the Eurostar terminal. I found it an interesting location as I had spent my day in nearby Marylebone, so very easy to access to and from the West End.
Rooms at the Barlow house start at £200 and Chamber Suites from £345.
– Would I recommend it to my best friend?
I would. In fact, it would be perfect for a nice day in London.. and on the next day maybe we can get on the train somewhere? I didn’t try the spa, which looks lovely. (Trudi, when you read this, it is a hint)
– Would I stay again?
Just tell me when.
I really really enjoyed my stay at the St. Pancras Renaissance in London. I spent a lot of time at the hotel, and felt really comfortable. Service was very good and the building is just out of this world. It was a bit strange to have a room facing a train station, but it also made it unique. I would recommend this hotel without any reservations.
Have you visited this hotel? What were your thoughts?
Disclaimer: I was a guest of Renaissance Hotels during this stay, but hopefully you will see that this has not influenced my thoughts about the property. For more information about the hotel, visit its official website.