Hiltons of London: Hilton Metropole London

My LEAST favourite Hilton hotel in London is the Hilton London Metropole. I had booked 4 nights, but left after only 1 night due to many issues with the room and hotel.

The issues started with check-in, where the front desk receptionist was cold and dismissive. I asked for an upgraded room (I figured it never hurts to ask), and she ended up moving me to a worse room than what I had already chosen online. The room was officially called an “executive room,” so I can’t imagine how bad the standard rooms must be.

Hilton Metropole Room – East Wing
The worst part of the room was the uncomfortable beds, both of which had deep pits in the middle. My back was killing me after just one night.

Metropole Beds
Hilton Metropole had the worst beds of all Hiltons!
The second worst issue was the awful smell in the room. There was a strong chemical smell, and unfortunately, the window could not be opened, and there was no other ventilation. The A/C barely worked, so the room was both stinky and humid…. quite unpleasant!

The room window could not be opened.
The room window could not be opened.
The third worst issue was the noise. The walls were thin, and there were a variety of loud, unknown noises throughout the day and night. Most of the noise seem to be coming from some sort of engine outside the window.

MetropoleTVLockedDownIn addition, the TV was locked down to where I was unable to plug in an external device (such as my iPad or computer).  Some hotels disable the “Input” button on the TVs so that if you want entertainment, you must purchase their overpriced movies directly from their TV system.

Similarly, the only refrigerator in the room was an “Auto Refreshment Centre,” where you can’t store your own items, and instead can only purchase their overpriced snacks and drinks.

When I first checked in, I called down to reception to ask for a few things I didn’t see in the room.  I asked for a robe, and they said they were “out of robes.”  I also asked for bottled waters, which are supposed to be a benefit of being a Hilton Hhonors diamond member. They said “of course” to that request, but the waters didn’t show up until 5 hours later.

On the somewhat bright side, this hotel had an executive lounge, which is free for Hilton Hhonors diamond members.  It included “tea time” from 3-6pm. I enjoyed the cucumber and egg salad sandwiches. However, I saw nasty-looking rainbows on the ham sandwiches.

Sandwiches and cakes in the Hilton Metropole executive lounge
In the evening, those same sandwiches are served, along with cheese and crackers, and 2 hot items. The hot items served the night of my visit were lamb skewers (extra sad for a vegetarian to see) and bland, fried polenta balls (gross!).   Most executive lounges at least provide bottles of water (See my reviews for Doubletree Tower Hill and Doubletree Westminster), but this lounge only provided a spigot for tap water.  Additionally, the executive lounge was continually dirty, which was ignored by the 3 staff members working in the lounge. Instead, they just sat in front of computers, drank tea, and talked to one another.

Hilton Metropole Breakfast buffet
Hilton Metropole Breakfast buffet
The next morning I tried the breakfast buffet, which was also free for Hilton Hhonors diamond members.  I stood in a long line, which was shared as both the entrance and exit, so departing customers were stepping on me as I tried to enter. The restaurant itself was also overcrowded, and the tables were too close together. The omelet station had only 2 burners, and standing in a long queue was not worth it.

Around 9am, I called the front desk to change my reservation. I spoke with 2 people before being transferred to a voicemail. After almost an hour of no call back, I walked downstairs to the front desk. The representative asked me to walk to a different area, where I explained my issues to a manager.

The manager was quite apologetic, and he offered to show me a room in the West Tower, which was apparently much newer and nicer. I declined, and he was unable to convince me to stay. He gave me his business card in case I decide to ever come back, and he said he would provide me with the best personal service in the future. He also gave me Hilton Hhonors points that equates to about 1/2 of one free standard night at a Hilton hotel in London. I appreciate the attempt to “make it right,” but it wasn’t enough.

Overall, I can’t imagine ever staying at this hotel again. There are many other Hilton hotels in central London that are a significantly better value.


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