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The Dorchester Hotel - London, England | Hotel Review

It should have gotten our highest rating but...


The Dorchester Hotel - London, England: Dorchester Hotel is located in Mayfair, the most prestigious address in London where only the truly rich can afford to reside. This already tells you how upscale this luxury hotel is, well above the usual five-star hotel chain. Winner of many awards, Dorchester is a paragon of style and elegance and is one of the most desirable places in the world to stay. With a policy of three staff members per guest, this hotel truly knows how to pamper its guests. Whether you are a traveling businessman or a Saudi oil sheik, you will feel like a true VIP.

First Impression/Lobby: A doorman with a dignified stance and a top hat welcomed us as we entered the Dorchester, while a sharply uniformed bellman quickly helped us with our luggage. On one side is the bell station while on the other was the reception desk. Inside looked like a glorious (although quite small) palace with a marble and gold motif, accented with yellow, ocher and black. I knew that it was just the beginning of a beautiful stay in an elegantly designed and decorated luxury hotel. I was wowed to say the least.

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Reception: At the reception, a young lady greeted us with a warm smile. She said that our room would not be ready for a few hours, which we had expected since we had arrived on an early morning flight. She suggested we wait in the restaurant and have breakfast so we headed down to the Promenade where breakfast was served. The place was gorgeous! Beautiful greenery fluttered above the opulent-looking couches and it seemed there were flowers in every direction we looked. We had a grand and leisurely time.

A few hours later, the receptionist came and escorted us to our room, a Junior Suite. The moment we walked in, the trace of cigarette smoke passed our nostrils and we could tell it was a smoking room. Since we had booked a non-smoking room, we questioned her about it. She wasn’t sure if it indeed was a smoking room, but said that she would go and find out. As we waited for her, our bags arrived and we decided that the room not only smelled of smoke but the way it was laid out was too claustrophobic.

The receptionist came back and said that the actual the room that we had booked was still occupied because the guest had extended their stay. Fortunately, another suite was available that we could check out.

The second suite was beautiful, so we told her that we would take it. She then asked us if we needed help getting our bags or if we wanted to get them ourselves. What ran through my mind was, here we are at the Dorchester Hotel; the suite we booked was unavailable, they try putting us in a smoking room and then only after specifically asking them did they offer us something else, and then she ends it off suggesting we should go get our own bags. This was definitely not the service I expected from, of all places, The Dorchester.

The Suite: Our suite, the Mayfair Suite, was located on the front corner of the hotel overlooking the rooftops of London’s Mayfair. At 107 square meters, it was quite spacious and airy. The interior was a combination of art deco chic and country charm, with a yellow, white and dark red motif, coupled with refurbished antique wood furniture. Silky and fine layers of draperies covered the tall windows while an exquisite area rug covered the living room floor, defining the area from the small dining area. Freshly cut flowers in beautiful vases placed on top of the tables scented the room and gave it a cheery ambiance while the low ambient lighting provided a romantic tinge. The bedroom was comfortably spacious as well and had a king-sized bed fitted with only the most luxurious sheets and linens in the world.

The suite had two full marble bathrooms: the master bathroom, located next to the bedroom, and a second one located off the living room. The second one had a standalone shower and one sink while the master bathroom had a bathtub/shower combo and twin sinks. Both were supplied with expensive Floris toiletries including Spearmint and Spice shampoo and conditioner, and Lime, Lemon and Mandarin body wash.

Room Service: We only stayed at the Dorchester for only one night, but it was enough to detect the glaring flaws of their room service. When I ordered breakfast, I was told it would take 25 minutes but it actually took 45 minutes to arrive. On top of that, the order was wrong; sending the wrong type of toast and coffee. To make things worse, they also forgot the fruit yogurt I ordered.

Furthermore, even though we were staying in a suite with an actual dining room, the room service attendant did not set up the breakfast on the table. He just wanted to roll in the tray and leave. To say I was amazed to get this type of non-service at the Dorchester is an understatement.

Housekeeping: On the surface, housekeeping appeared to do a stunning job but when I found hairs in the shower in the master bathroom one day and even more hairs in the other bathroom’s shower the following day I had to mark down their score. Also, we requested water at the evening turndown but to our dismay, they failed to leave any.

For a luxury hotel like the Dorchester, housekeeping should be flawless, no ifs, ands or buts.

Concierge: Perfection! We had contacted the concierge in advance and they were quick to answer our emails and were always thorough with their information. They offered us great recommendations, booked our tables as we requested, and made the whole process simple. When we were at the hotel and contacted them for additional recommendations, they were knowledgeable, gracious, and did what they said. We could not have asked for better service from the concierge.

Restaurant: We visited The Bar at The Dorchester a few different times and each time service was impeccable. Each time we were there, it was crowded with businessmen, upscale visitors and some trendy mid 30’s type.

In the afternoon, the Promenade serves Traditional, Champagne or High Tea and they even have their own tea chef. It’s a great place for people-watching as high-class society, celebrities, and wealthy VIPs frequent the place.

For lunch or dinner, homegrown British cuisine is served at The Grill, while the finest contemporary French cuisine is served at Alain Ducasse and Cantonese food at China.

Pool/Spa/Activities: The Dorchester Hotel facilities include a fully featured gym, a sauna, whirlpool bath areas, and a barbershop. They also have a spa that provides a wide range of beauty treatments and Charles Worthington unisex hairdressers.

Overall Impression The Dorchester Hotel has everything it takes to be rated Fantastic Bombastic but the staff’s gross slips in housekeeping, room service, and reception keep it from receiving our highest rating. We rate the Dorchester Hotel bombastic.

To see other luxury and 5 star London hotels, we have reviewed, follow the links below:
Brown’s Hotel Luxury Hotel London Review
InterContinental Park Lane Hotel London Review
Le Meridien Piccadilly Hotel London Review
Mandarin Oriental Hyde Park Hotel London Review

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