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Which London hotels top the TripAdvisor charts?

by Rajul on July 6, 2009

Deluxe Queen bed at the Egerton House Hotel (complete with crown!), where the staff make you feel like royalty Deluxe Queen bed (complete with crown!) at the top-rated Egerton House Hotel, where the staff do everything they can to make you feel like royalty

Our mission at London Hotels Insight is to give you the hotels “at the top of their game” right now, as shown by guest reviews and research.  It’s a good time to see who’s currently top of the pops!

This article runs through the current TripAdvisor top 5 (based purely on guest reviews) and the findings may surprise you.

There has been some change at the top of the charts in recent weeks and there’s a new number 1: the Egerton House Hotel.  This is a townhouse hotel in Knightsbridge handy for shopping at Harrods (here are other well-rated hotels convenient for shopping in London).

Recent guest reviews for the Egerton House describe feeling “pampered” by its “lovely atmosphere” and friendly staff.  Room rates reflect the well-to-do area.  No wonder it’s currently seen as the best London hotel.

Check rates at Egerton House Hotel

Since it’s new at number 1, the only caveat is that there are currently only around 50 reviews for the hotel and I usually like the sample size to be at least 100.  Our TripAdvisor user guide explains why.

At number 2 on the chart (it did hold number one for a few weeks) from a reassuring 250+ reviews is Hotel 41, a boutique London hotel near Victoria.  You can read through the TripAdvisor guest reviews at your leisure but the key point is the friendliness and enthusiasm of the staff.

Check rates at Hotel 41

Entrance to Hotel 41 Entrance to the stylish Hotel 41 where again the staff excel

Again, it’s not cheap but most of its guests think it’s worth it.  The only slight negative comment about both the top 2 hotels is that rooms are not huge (at least by US standards), but that’s fairly normal in London.

Interestingly, both the above top 2 on TripAdvisor are run by the same independent hotel company: RCH Group (Red Carnation Hotel Collection).

The corporate motto is “no request is too large, no detail too small” and it looks from guest comments that they may be delivering on this promise (I really ploughed through quite a few to make sure).

But hold on.  Another Red Carnation Hotel is at number 3: the Milestone Hotel.  This is based on a good sample of more than 120 reviews.

Again, the key point from guest reviews is that staff make all the difference (the product is good but by no means outstanding for the price).

This confirms my belief that you should always look at staff recruitment and training when choosing your ideal London hotel, or allow London Hotels Insight to keep you informed on this.

By the way, the Milestone Hotel’s high rating is confirmed independently by a number of accolades: for example, it was voted #1 in Conde Nast Traveller’s 2009 Gold List of the World’s Best Hotels.  It looks like it deserves to call itself a genuine 5 star London hotel.

Check rates at Milestone Hotel

The Milestone Hotel Restaurant It’s all about service at the Milestone Hotel

Number 4 in the current TripAdvisor list is the Soho Hotel (featured in our article on London’s Soho area), which was only recently #1.  Scouring recent reviews, there doesn’t seem to have been any fall in standards.

It seems that the three Red Carnation hotels have jumped above it only on the weight of their own positive recent reviews.  It is run by another boutique hotel group – Firmdale Hotels.

Check rates at the Soho Hotel

5th place is taken – surprise surprise – by yet another Red Carnation hotel, this time the Montague on the Gardens (based on 300+ reviews).

Check rates at the Montague Hotel

This pet friendly London hotel is in Bloomsbury and the dominant theme in guest reviews is “wonderful staff”.  So it’s almost a clean sweep for Red Carnation with 4 out of TripAdvisor’s top 5 London hotels this month.

It cannot be a coincidence that this one hotel company dominates predominantly on the basis of one factor: the staff.

I will talk to management to understand Red Carnation’s staff recruitment and training processes.  I’ll naturally report back via London Hotels Insight.

Just how can one company so dominate the list of the best London hotels?

We’ll also keep monitoring the TripAdvisor charts for you to see if the company manages to hold on to its lofty position!

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Photo credits: Red Carnation Hotel Collection.

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