IT’S hard to think there’s a more stunning hotel room vista in our capital than the one afforded by the London Hotel Marriott County Hall.
Situated on the South Bank, right next to Westminster Bridge, you look out across the Thames to the Houses of Parliament and Big Ben, perhaps London’s most famous landmark, while just a stone’s throw away is its most iconic 21st century sight, the London Eye, all of which combined to create a real wow factor for us and the two boys.
The County Hall was once exactly that, home to the now defunct Greater London Council, before it opened as a hotel in 1998. The transformation is incredibly impressive because while it’s a mere teenager as a hotel, the long history of the building provides it with a genuine sense of grandeur.
Like the entrance itself or the long winding corridors where bedrooms have taken the place of council staff offices.
Harry, our youngest, was genuinely fascinated by Big Ben, but despite its proximity, the sound-proof windows (which can be opened) keep out the chimes, but also the constant hum of people visiting the many attractions which have also taken up residence in and around the County Hall building such as The London Film Museum, the London Aquarium and the aforementioned London Eye.
Our suite was beautifully appointed with two large and very comfortable double beds, a lovely seating area, tea and coffee-making facilities, plenty of cupboard space and a sizeable bathroom with an excellent shower.
All of us took advantage too of the brilliant leisure facilities inside. Guests have full access to the hotel’s leisure facilities including an impressive gym as well as a jacuzzi, sauna and a magnificent 25m swimming pool, the latter of which was a good way to end the daytime proceedings messing around with the boys.
Breakfast was served in the beautiful surroundings of Gillrays Steakhouse and Bar which is transformed for early morning diners who can tuck into either continental or traditional English breakfasts and, it has to be said, quite a lot of other combinations in between. The restaurant is also open for lunch and dinner while the hotel also hosts a Library Lounge for people to take traditional afternoon tea and the Leaders Bar where you can sip a drink while you plan a night out.
What we loved about the County Hall was its proximity to so many great things. The London Eye is a must for any visitor to the capital and we also took a river cruise down the Thames where there was a really informative commentary of the sights along the way. You are very close to Westminster Abbey and Whitehall too while on the South Bank itself, Waterloo station is nearby allowing you move quickly to Borough Market, another must-do in any trip to London. All in all, a perfect hotel in a perfect location.