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36 BLOOMSBURY STREET / LONDON / WC1B 3QJ / Tel: +44 / 207 / 5804232 / Fax: +44 / 207 / 4366341.

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      30.04.2007 22:31
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      toilet seat? you must be joking!

      Gresham Hotel
      Oh my goodness me!
      I really hate to slate anything or anybody but this really was the worst place I have stayed in for a long time. I am going to start with the positives and work my way down.
      This is a review about the hotel itself, rather than a tourist’s guide as I originally a Londoner (now relocated) who likes to use hotels when visiting family and friends. I don’t really do a lot of the tourist thing when I go to London.
      Just a little about my own travel experience.
      I am used to basic accommodation; I have stayed in the Regent Palace notoriously basic, alas no longer with us! I also am used to basic self catering holidays; I expect cleanliness, politeness, security and the basic of basics…toilet paper, a toilet seat, a light…

      Location:
      Bloomsbury Street, just off New Oxford Street.
      Close to Tottenham Court Road Tube Station
      Buses to all the tourist hotspots and various locations in London.
      Near Soho, Leicester Square and all the shows.
      Check In:
      This is where I had my serious doubts and I should have run away (except I was pregnant and just wanted a bed for the night, my legs were not going to allow me to look for somewhere else). You pay for your room and get given a key. You then are informed that you have to return the key every time you leave the building. Ok I thought so do you show them ID? No…you ask whoever is there for your room number and that is it. No swiping anything, no identity just gets the key and go in. I was shown to my room and given very little instruction about breakfast. I could not find a card in the room to tell me and I was seriously wondering if eating here would be a good idea.

      The Room:
      We had a basic double room £100 for two nights including breakfast. Shared bathrooms just next to the room.
      The light above the bed was not only broken but was hanging off the wall! We feared that any movement would send it crashing onto one of our heads! The sheets were not completely clean. The bed was not a standard double, really me and hubby were squashed and we aint that big. In fact I am glad that we are both short too, anyone over 5ft 5 would have been hanging off the end of the bed!
      The window would not stay open so we had to prop it open with the ashtray and Gideon’s bible. This would prove a source of discomfort during the night as the heating was on full blast. This stay was in February yes, but this February if anyone can remember was very mild. So why waste the money on having the heating so high?

      The Shared ‘Facilities’:
      Yes, how pleasant….ahem
      The toilet had no paper in on a frequent basis; I ended up buying tissues to take with me. The toilets were also minus a seat, just to add to my discomfort of being challenged in the belly department. Hotel guests were using the toilets to smoke in, I am not against smoking, my husband still smokes but he lets me and baby have fresh air by smoking out of the window. My gripe was that you could use the rooms to smoke in so why use the shared facilities? Why were there no signs in there?
      The showers were revolting; they were never clean and made me feel sick to use them. Having to wash someone else’s pubic hair down a plughole just before breakfast is not fun. The showers were designed so badly that the water ran straight across the shower room and all over your nice dry clothes….

      Breakfast:
      Yeah is that what it was?
      Day 1
      One bowl of rice crispies out and a very brown banana. No bowls, no milk, no toast, no condiments or preserves. No mugs for tea or coffee. We waited 20 minutes for this to be replenished. When I did find someone they told me to sit and wait, and all I wanted was a receptacle to drink from and a piece of toast. They took my order the choice of which was cooked breakfast or not. I risked it. I got a slice of ham…I know this is continental but it was advertised as English breakfast and we were in England. Undercooked egg and a tinned tomato.
      Day 2
      There were some cereal, but no milk, cups or any fruit at all. I opted to have just toast instead of the cooked stuff and thankfully got what I wanted. I had to fight for condiments which were put on a little plate in front of me and then hastily taken away and given to someone else before I got to my second slice.
      I repeat, I am very used to basic accommodation but this pushed the boundary for me.
      Do not stay at this hotel it is shocking!

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