by Ben Chambers
As a traveller from the south-east of England, I reach London through Victoria Station. The black cab ride to the Conrad from the station was extremely quick, reaching it in under ten minutes. Arriving directly at the hotel’s impressive 19th-century facade, you are driven under the bold awning, welcomed and immediately made luggage free until you reach your room.
That is, if you manage to reach your room. Walking from the check-in area you are greeted by the elegant Emmeline’s Lounge, a bright, modern, yet cosy bar named after the early 20th century British political activist Emmeline Pankhurst, where you can enjoy a well-deserved G&T or a quintessentially English afternoon tea alongside some bubbles, ideal for the weary traveller/shopper.
Those travelling by tube will be pleased to know that St James’ Park station is opposite the hotel, serving both the District and Circle lines.
My choice of room was an Executive Twin, providing plenty of space to relax and unwind as well as having the option to work at the large desk (option not taken), but I was well entertained with the in-room media hub, which to other luddites is a Chromecast application and the 42-inch satellite HDTV.
The extremely comfortable bed was made up with Egyptian cotton sheets and the bathroom was roomy and classically decked out in marble with separate bathtub and walk-in rain shower. Thankfully there was a very well-stocked minibar and the usual but now generally expected Nespresso coffee machine. In keeping with the hotel’s modern theme, you are apparently able to check in digitally, customise your stay and access your room via a digital key on your mobile device using the Hilton Honors app, none of which I dared to try.
Unsurprisingly, the Executive Twin was located on the Executive Floor and a massive plus to the executive rooms is that one can enjoy unlimited access to the Executive Lounge, allowing a more intimate experience of breakfast, as well as the added touch of afternoon tea and evening drinks with hors d’oeuvres. This clearly wasn’t an afterthought to give the guest a little more bang for their buck; it was a tailored and classy offering, with highly attentive, hands-on hospitality and delicious morsels that was fully complimentary to the executive rooms.
Conrad London St. James has many plus points, some detailed above, and its location is another. Set a stone’s throw from Westminster, Big Ben and Buckingham Palace, it boasts a prime location for tourists.
The Conrad Hotel is quite simply a modern masterpiece of luxury, stunning decor and service, finding the perfect balance between offering state-of-the-art facilities while remaining chic.