If you’ve got a really special day planned hitting London town and you want that celebratory feeling to continue on into the next day, then a sleepover in your home city can be the icing on top of a very gooey delicious cake. And since I’ve now moved out to leafy Surrey, it had the extra benefit of being somewhere to rest my head and enjoy a leisurely lie-in, rather than flagging down a taxi at some forgettable hour to get home.
That special occasion was my sister’s hen party and since I was planning on
just a few many glasses of fizz, it just made plain and simple good sense.
Since brunch festivities at Beach Blanket Babylon were kicking off at noon, I had asked for an early check-in but sadly there weren’t any rooms available, so we had to drop our bags off and run. Equally the twin room I had asked for wasn’t possible as it turns out the standard rooms only have one queen bed and since my sister and I were most definitely not keen on cuddling up, we upgraded to something called the Superior Double Double which had two queen beds, far more to our liking.
The lobby is unlike any other hotel lobby I’ve seen before in that it looks really quite cool! There’s the check in desk, but it’s on the side leaving people to mingle and admire the nautical themed artwork and the little touches which are dotted throughout.
We returned from our partying in the wee hours of the morning to find the hotel still buzzing with Dandelyan bar in full swing. Our room was on the same floor as the rooftop bar and I was a little concerned it may be noisy but with a few locked doors in between, the corridor leading to it was hushed and quiet.
Our room was quite masculine in style, despite the splashes of magenta and I’m not sure how I felt about it, I thought the splashes of colour were a bit garish for me and not terribly calming given the lateness of the hour. The bathroom was a beauty though and stocked with luxury Malin + Goetz toiletries, which are always a winner in my eye!
I’d forgotten my toothbrush but that was quickly fixed by a call to reception and I could sink into that bed. Let me tell you, that is by far the most comfortable bed I have ever slept in and it was tough going to get out of it the next morning!
One really great thing about Mondrian is that they don’t have a strict check-out schedule on Sundays, they recognise that it’s a lazy sort of day and you’re welcome to hang out and cuddle into that bed as long as you let them know that you’ll be checking out a bit late. I was starting to miss the sprog though, so I didn’t take advantage of it but next time!
I had also wanted to go for a swim, one of the best bits about staying over in a luxury hotel but there isn’t one one sadly so we shifted our attentions to breakfast.
Downstairs, the glittering interior of Sea Containers was calling out to us. That bar is a thing of beauty and I think we’d be propping it up had it not been for the night before, but then luckily I remembered that Bloody Mary’s are an acceptable breakfast food so bingo, the bar shall be used!
Breakfast is served buffet style and in true hotel breakfast style, there is everything that you can think of. Eggs, bacon, toast, sausages and all the cheeses and fruit you can shake a stick at. I was a little disappointed that there wasn’t an option to have eggs cooked hot for you as I think eggs need to be piping hot and not the lukewarm versions you get out of a chafing dish. I also had a secret hankering for pancakes but without an a la carte menu, I had to stick with the buffet options.
Coffee is much needed for the morning after and it’s a good’ un, albeit slightly slow to arrive in front of us. That’s a bit of a theme throughout actually, service just isn’t quite as polished as I would have expected. That’s not to say there’s anything particularly wrong, but there’s a sense of not being quite on the mark and we have to ask for coffee a couple of times, remind servers of our request for water and it doesn’t really encourage us to linger on with our drinks and perhaps another bite from the buffet and so we found it a bit more functional as a breakfast rather than a indulgence after the night before.
Sea Containers won’t be making my London breakfast list, I think that what we should have done is simply stayed in and enjoyed those comfy beds a bit longer!