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Hotel Xenia London – Boutique luxury in the heart of Kensington

a building with a sign on the front

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Perhaps the best deal in London is part of Marriott’s Autograph Collection, 10 minutes walk from Kensington palace.

I didn’t know what to expect when I booked the hotel Xenia. I maintain Marriott gold status through my Amex Platinum and was headed to London for a quick weekend wedding trip. If you’re a frequent reader of MM, you may be aware that my girlfriend and I did a weekend wedding trip last year as well – byah! I absolutely love the adrenaline of flying halfway around the world over just a few days to celebrate love, see friends, and ball out in lie-flat luxury. This was no exception. I wanted to do one night in central London and a couple at the airport. I found an incredible deal at the Hotel Xenia London, £117 for an entry level room thinking I’d get upgraded with my status.

a street with cars parked on it

The Deets:

  • When: August 2017
  • Where: Kensington London
  • Status: Gold
  • Benefits: Room upgrade and breakfast

Location:

  • 10-15 minutes walking from Hyde Park, Royal Albert Hall, Kensington Palace, and smack in the middle of hold your nose up, I sign the front of checks Kensington Uber Rich.

a statue of a woman in a park

I’ve stayed at several different hotels in London, but never in Kensington.   The hotel is across the street from the Kensington Marriott on Cromwell Rd which is a big, bad, convention hotel.

a building with scaffolding on the side of it

The Xenia sits quietly, in stark contrast to its big brother across the street. In fact, if you blink you’ll miss it. If you like warm welcomes, friendly smiles, and the feeling that if you missed your wake-up call someone would definitely be knocking on your door – this is the place for you.

a building with columns and a person standing in front of it

The entry level rooms are SMALL!

Buy beware. I don’t mean small for an American in Europe, I mean you could potentially ship your room Freight. I failed to notice the size when I booked my non-refundable rate, but I was traveling alone for the first night, and figured I’d score an upgrade. Plus…I wanted to cruise around London.

a white text on a blue background

Check-In.

I Ubered from the airport and was warmly greeted upon arrival. The hotel has a small charming lobby, and a staff that has been well trained and prompted to make guests feel as though they are guests at a bed and breakfast rather than a hotel.

a room with chairs and a chandelier

Upgraded to an Classic Room

Still only 13 square meters, but it had a King bed ( two twins put together). On that note…while be advertised as a King – my feet hung over the end of the bed when my head touched the headboard. I’m only 6′ tall. I think this may be a stretch for a “King,” but nonetheless I was happy to have the extra space.

The bathroom feature L’Occitane products and while small, was perfectly adequate.

Breakfast.

As a Marriott Gold Elite I received a complimentary continental breakfast served in the conservatory portion of their restaurant, Evoluzione. I always get terrible jetlag when flying East and slept a whole 0 minutes. As a result, I went to breakfast smack when it started…at 7am.

a room with tables and chairs

I found the food to be fresh, plentiful, and very good. The staff was a bit cold if I’m being completely honest.

Overall:

Would I come back? Absolutely. While the room is small, and if you’re not alone it would be a bit cramped, it doesn’t really matter. Who comes to London and spends a ton of time in their room?! If the rates were similar ( I’ve seen them as low as £99) I’m not sure I could pass it up. Great location, solid breakfast, near the tube, and a friendly staff.

Looking for a place in London? Check out my other reviews

 

Opinions, reviews, analyses & recommendations are the author’s alone, and have not been reviewed, endorsed or approved by any of these entities.

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9 Comments

  • Jason September 4, 2017

    I stayed at the beginning of the year, and had booked the same single as you did (for around the same price IIRC). I am a platinum and got an upgrade to basically the same room as you, BUT, it also had an outdoor terrace, which basically doubled the size of the room. It was January, and still i went out there just to make it less claustrophobic. The amenities, etc., were all very nice, and the mostly eastern european staff I interacted with were helpful. I had also stayed across the street at the Marriott (on the same trip, wanted to try both), and frankly, although the linens, etc were nicer at the Xenia, the room size just wasn’t worth it. If both were equally priced again, I would probably return to the Marriott over the Xenia.

    • Miles September 5, 2017

      Jason – Thanks for the information – the Marriott is on my list to try as well.

  • Jason September 3, 2017

    Based on the photos of the size of the room they should change the name of the hotel to: The Coffin or Claustro.

  • Dave September 3, 2017

    I stayed there in 2014. My first room was small and the A/C didn’t work. I was moved to a larger room which was much more comfortable in terms of size, plus the A/C worked.

    I’m glad to hear you got such a low rate because the Dollar vs. the Pound was very disadvantageous when I was there so the cost was very expensive. I found it worthwhile, however, as it was less than a 15-minute walk to the Tube. And the concierges were very helpful.

    • Miles September 3, 2017

      Dave – I was very pleasantly surprised with the hotel, and the price is really great. If you’re mainly going to be out and about…great spot.

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