Club Quarters is a chain with 15 prime locations across the US and London, and this Trafalgar Square branch is no exception: step out of the front door of the hotel and you have an excellent view of Nelson’s Column to your left. Walk a few steps more and you have the National Gallery and St-Martin-in-the-Fields within your sights, with Soho and the Theatre District a five-minute walk away. In short, it’s a perfect base for an action-packed stay in the capital. If there’s any downside, it would be that this naturally makes for a slightly noisy location (varying depending on whether you have a room facing the front or the back – note that even-numbered rooms face the back). Take earplugs just in case.
There are also several amenities within walking distance, including a Boots pharmacy, a Tesco Express supermarket, a Waterstone’s bookshop, and innumerable eateries. The nearest Underground station is Charing Cross.
We have stayed twice and on both occasions found the room to be of a very high standard. Sleek modern furnishings, a flat-screen TV, an iPod dock and unlimited chilled water greet you on entry to the room, and while the bathroom furnishings are perhaps not of quite the same high standard of quality, they are still not to be sniffed at nonetheless. Gilchrist and Soames toiletries abound and the bed is very comfortable, putting you well on your way to a good night’s sleep. We also had a luxurious armchair and spacious desk at our disposal, ensuring a productive and relaxing stay for business and leisure travellers. One small quibble: the hotel was nowhere near full and yet we were put in a disabled-friendly room, which meant doorhandles etc were at an inconvenient height. Still, this didn’t impact massively on the enjoyment of our stay.
We had been offered a free breakfast on this occasion due to a mixup with our reservation (we had initially been booked in at the Lincoln’s Inn branch of the hotel), and so while we would normally eschew the hotel breakfast in favour of the Prêt A Manger round the corner, this time we prepared to tuck in to the hotel fare, served in Boyd’s Brasserie on the ground floor. While a continental breakfast was on offer – and this was what we’d assumed our free breakfast would consist of – it was in fact the full English breakfast that was the star of the show, and even though we didn’t pay the £15-per-head on this occasion (which included not only the full English but also unlimited continental breakfast) it still ended up seeming good value for the price advertised. Breakfast was of good quality and service was courteous and speedy.
The brasserie is also excellent for drinks and snacks throughout the day, although it seems a little odd that no even remotely tea-time related nibbles (e.g. scones) are available mid-afternoon. Beyond this, it’s a perfectly lovely place to relax and recharge batteries, with modern mood music and chandeliers combining to make an atmospheric experience.
Members can benefit from free weekend nights for themselves, friends and family (as a primarily business hotel they are desperate to fill the place at weekends), and this is what we typically benefit from, paying only the £18 tax. A normal weekday rate for non-members at Club Quarters Trafalgar Square would cost around £159, not including breakfast; a weekend rate for members, bizarrely, is slightly more. It would therefore seem that non-member rates are about average for the area, making member rates seem highly desirable and competitive, even though breakfast is not included in any of the rates. Nonetheless, for a four-star hotel it seems very good value; I suspect that for the prime location and super service we would visit again – even if paying full whack.
8 Northumberland Avenue
London WC2N 5BY
Phone: (44) 20-7839-9333