I am still thinking in pounds. This is a bad thing. Because when I saw I could stay at The Covent Garden Hotel for £255, I was too easily swayed. I did it.
And you know what…after "living" in the hotel for 26 hours, I have absolutely no regrets. This is an amazingly lovely property.
Let's start with the location. It's on the edge of Covent Garden, so you're close enough to be a tourist if you want to, but far enough away to avoid the madness if that's more your style. For the most part, I avoided the madness with the exception of the short walk to Covent Garden tube.
Secondly, the staff. Lovely lovely lovely. You might recall that I had to schlep three suitcases up to my room at The Hoxton Hotel all by myself. Not so at The Covent Garden Hotel! I was met at the door and relieved of my bags, and then upon my departure, the bellhop flagged me down a taxi and loaded me and all my belongings into it with a smile and a jaunty wave as we rolled away. (This is not to say that The Hoxton Hotel is not without its charms. I loved The Hoxton Hotel. Just differently.)
Thirdly, bed linens. The nicest bed linens I think I've ever experienced. You wouldn't think that bed linens could make a difference to sleep quality, but here, they really did. (As do did the little spray canister of lavender water they left on my pillow.)
Sixth, there was the lovely library. I passed a few hours in here, checking my e-mail (more about that later) and enjoying some Honesty Bar champagne. Really really lovely. Full wood burning fire going and everything.
There were other things I loved about The Covent Garden Hotel. The gym was small but had everything you needed…cardio machines, free weights, weight machines, bottled water and on my second visit, there were granola bars. And fruit. In my hotel room, the closet was perfect–with a full-length mirror– which is something I think no good hotel should go without. It may seem odd to compliment a hair dryer, but if you've ever stayed in a hotel with those basic hair dryers attached to the walls that eek out just the tiniest puffs of air, you might understand why. The Covent Garden Hotel hair dryer felt like a professional hair dryer. Serious stuff. Ah, and Miller Harris bath products. Lovely. Heck, I even liked the LIGHT SWITCHES.
On the down side, The Covent Garden Hotel is still charging for Internet (30p a minute–thank God my UK Vodafone dongle still works). And I thought the food in the restaurant was only okay. (I had breakfast each day there and on Day One, my corn fritters were flavorless. On Day Two, my omelet was anemic-looking.)
Despite those two flaws–and risky flaws at that–I still loved The Covent Garden Hotel. The price, of course, will have me thinking carefully before I book again, but if I need a central location and a great night's sleep, it's a done deal.