Howdy all. Well today I want to talk about one of my favourite cities in the world, if not my number one favourite city, and that is London. But this post isn’t quite as positive as ones in the past because I wanted to talk about my only real bugbear with the city. Well, besides the fact that it doesn’t do well in the heat (hope anyone there right now is coping okay!) I want to talk about the accommodation situation.
In 1999 I prebooked by phone a room in an Earl’s Court Hostel. I should mention that I can’t remember the name of the place, it was 23 years ago after all and I didn’t really use the internet much at all in 1999, not many did. Well I remember distinctly that it was in an oldish house, was the most expensive hostel I had for the entire trip at roughly 18 – 20 pounds per night, it was hot, it stank, and although there were plenty of good people staying and working there, it was a place I dreaded going back to at night. The worst thing was the heat at night, I didn’t get a decent night’s sleep for any of the five or so nights I stayed there.
In 2011 I stayed at a Hostelling International Hostel which wasn’t particularly central. It was a bit like a big gym of fitness centre which had sort of been converted into a hostel, although it probably wasn’t. I can’t find it listed anywhere these days, so I presume it’s no longer in operation. It was okay I guess but not very welcoming or comfortable, and the room mates…. Well let’s just say this why I pretty much would only stay at a hostel again as very last resort. Again the room was too hot for sleep, which I got very little of for my one night there.
I also stayed at a little hotel for about 40-50 quid on the same trip when I arrived in London, a long way from the centre, a good 30 minutes or more by the TUBE. The room was incredibly small, it was basically a cupboard, with a matchbox for a bathroom. But I guess again it wasn’t so bad.
My Air Bnb in 2018 was a disappointment. Nice photos as always on the site, it was in Kensington which wasn’t quite as far from the action, and it was around 65 pounds a night. The electricity went out for a day and someone had to come and put money in the meter (which was a new concept to me, we don’t have ‘pay as you go energy’ here in Australia as far as I know. So you would think when they had someone renting the tiny apartment they would make sure it was loaded up, but apparently not, and I felt like it was a real imposition on the owner to come and fix it up.
On my way out of London in 2018 I overnighted in the Elmwood Hotel, which I can’t remember the rate but I see it’s over $100AUD at the moment. This is the best room I’ve had in London. Small and very basic, but the cleanest at the very least.
I wonder though, how much do I need to spend in London to get a nice room? I mean a couple these were perfectly serviceable, but in a city with so many places to stay, you are always going to need to pay a pretty penny for that comfort. I must say I’ve been mostly disappointed with the rooms I’ve had in the past.
Still, there’s always next time although I’m not sure when that is likely to be. Hoping to spend a bit of time in the United Kingdom in two or three years – I will have long service due and would like to spend most of it overseas (no surprise there) so if you’re reading this blog (this ‘whinge’ to be more accurate lol) and you know of a great place in London to stay that isn’t monstrously expensive, please do leave a comment with the suggestion!
Thanks as always for popping by and reading my ramblings! Wherever you are in the world, take care, and May the Journey Never End!