|European Extravaganza 2019|
My last night in London! It’s bittersweet but I’m also looking forward to visit Paris where I’ll be able to visit Disneyland (for Jewel) and check off a childhood dream of visiting it again 15 years ago!
But first, the hotel review of Hilton London Kensington as promised. I’ll also try my best to draw comparisons with my stay at Hilton London Olympia, just so you know which you prefer better!
As mentioned, the Hilton London Kensington is a stone’s throw away from the Hilton London Olympia, which we previously reviewed here. As such, I made my way there by foot as the weather in December was pleasant. You might want to hail a cab otherwise.
On retrospect, I found the location of Hilton London Kensington to be more practical. That’s because it had the advantage of having an Underground station (don’t mix it up with the Overground station also present; here’s the difference) besides the hotel, which will bring you to the North of Hyde Park or even into the middle of Oxford Circus, a street symbolic to London’s status as a metropolitan city.
Even if you decide to just laze around for the day, you could just pop by one of London’s biggest malls, the Westfield – White City, just across the street from the hotel. You are treated to a boutique of over 450 stores, you’ll never be bored! You might even find some discounts in some of your favourite stores!
Upon arrival, I noticed that there was an allocated area for cars and taxis to drop/pick-up passengers, which felt safer since there would be no onrushing traffic behind. I also felt that the lobby of the Hilton London Kensington was much more modern and spacious as compared to the Hilton London Olympia. There was an ample amount of seating area around; different options of sofas and business seating areas, which made the Hilton London Olympia feel a little congested when compared.
We arrived slightly earlier at 1130am when check-in was normally done at 3pm. I had planned to deposit my luggage with the staff and head to Westfield for a walk while allowing time to pass. To my surprise, the room had already been prepared! There was no suite upgrade this time though, but it was fine since I would be out most of the day. The staff swiftly handed out the hotel key cards and a small info card on my benefits as a Hilton Diamond member.
With that, we promptly checked-in into our Twin Executive Room. You could tell from the video that it was a basic room that fulfilled its purpose. I found this to be one of the smaller ones compared to the other executive rooms I’ve visited around the world, even when compared to the Hilton London Olympia. However, the room, just like the lobby, felt more modern and was painted with bright colours as well, which was palpable.
I didn’t take photos of the toilet, but I’m happy to report that there’s a bathtub inside should you choose to soak in after a long day!
If we just focused on the room, we would be missing out the star of this hotel, which would be the executive lounge?
For the Hilton London Kensington, the executive lounge was on the same floor as the lobby. You needed to tap your hotel card to enter, just like the Hilton London Olympia.
The design of the lounge matched what I saw in the room; the bright colours and modern furniture made it feel very cosy indeed. Did I also mention how spacious the lounge is?
As you could see, there was definitely much more area to roam around in this lounge. The large area also made it very conducive for families who dined here.
As we arrived at the forsaken timing of high noon, there wasn’t any food on display (wait till dinner!) However, there was an extensive drinks selection still available for guests who decided to pass the afternoon away in the lounge. A chilled bar mixed with alcoholic & non-alcoholic beverages were at one’s disposal, and if neither were to one’s tasting, you could go for something warm. It’s winter after all!
As you could probably tell, a cup of hot chocolate was my drink of choice!
Yes, there’s room for criticism that there’s not much of a view in this lounge as compared to the lounge in Hilton London Olympia, but I have to give credit where credit is due; the food offered was top notch!
The afternoon sauntered by as I spent time at Winter Wonderland, and made it back in time for dinner.
Upon entering the lounge, I was treated to a tasty spread of Japanese fusion food.
You had Japanese Ebi and spring rolls that could be paired with sweet Thai chilli. You could opt for more Western options too, a Pasta salad was available, and you could get bread paired with some chicken soup as well.
For drinks, the open bar was open but I didn’t really feel like drinking. You could opt for a smoothie or ice chocolate.
Of course, the best part was that all the food and drink items were free flow and complimentary!
I decided to take a walk around the hotel after a heavy dinner. I was excited to explore this hotel which so far has obtained much praise from me!
At the lobby, you have a spacious business area with complimentary printing services.
You have the fitness center also on the lobby floor at the other side of the hotel. The Olympic Suite, the grandest suite of the hotel, is also located here.
It’s not the biggest gym, but it is decked with rather modern facilities.
There’s also a sauna & steam room if working out at the gym isn’t your preferred way to start the day/end the night.
Although I didn’t spend much time using the facilities as I had to pack and leave for Paris the following day, you definitely have a few activities to keep you occupied during your time at the Hilton London Kensington!
I started the morning early as I had a few errands to run before leaving for Paris. We went to the executive lounge for breakfast as we wanted a quick and quiet start to the morning. The executive lounge definitely had fewer options as compared to the main breakfast hall, but it suited us just fine.
You could pick up a newspaper along the way in.
Breakfast items were pretty standard. You had pastries, regular hot items, salads and fresh yogurt with fruits.
A classic English breakfast I got for myself, I would say!
As mentioned, my stay here at the Hilton London Kensington was used as a basis of comparison with my experience at the Hilton London Olympia. Located just 10-15 minutes apart via walking, I would give the Hilton London Kensington props for its location and modern design. Although I only spent a night in the Hilton London Kensington, the difference in the age of equipment was clear to see. The ease of access to Westfield was also useful. However, I felt that the service I experienced at the Hilton London Olympia was more comforting and personable. The staff went the extra mile there; and that charm and dedication was not lost on me. The suite upgrade also made my stay that very much enjoyable.
Cash rates at the Hilton London Kensington seem to be 15% more expensive than the Hilton London Olympia. If you don’t mind paying slightly more, you can consider the Hilton London Kensington. In any case, you will be staying at 2 wonderful hotels in the prime and serene location of West London.
This wraps up our coverage of reviews in the United Kingdom; I’ll see you in Paris!