As explained in my London 101 post, you should take your airport into consideration when choosing a location for sleeping in London. Over the years, I’ve been set on two strategic areas: South Kensington/Earl’s Court and around Paddington Station (most budget-friendly).
Both neighborhoods are served by the District and Circle lines, connecting you directly to many sightseeing spots. Additionally, the area between South Kensington and Earl’s Court is absolutely full of hotels, for all budgets. It is a great place to stay as it allows you to walk to many attractions as well. However, on my last 2 visits to London, I had the chance to stay once just off Piccadilly Circus and another on Leicester Square.
Let me start by getting one thing out of the way: yes, it’s expensive and what you pay for here is the location, period. If you can splurge, go for it. If not, staying in the areas above is just as well and definitely has a much better cost/benefit.
But I have to admit that sleeping in such a central location was a total game-changer for me. It’s just amazing to do virtually everything on foot, to be able to stop by and leave shopping bags or take quick breaks in the middle of sightseeing or before dinner… The list is endless. Consider the splurge carefully.
Le Méridien Piccadilly*****
As the name suggests, Le Méridien Piccadilly is just off Piccadilly Circus, more precisely, 130m away. It is worth it for the location alone. Rooms are a little dated, but you have a great infrastructure at your disposal: gym, indoor pool, spa, steam, and relaxation rooms. Breakfast is served on the beautiful The Terrace with glass walls overlooking the Circus below. Another location plus is that the Green Park station is just 500m down the road. From there, it’s one stop to Victoria station, where you take the Gatwick Express. Book here.
W London Leicester Square*****
As per its name, W London Leicester Square is on Leicester Square, more precisely, above the M&M World store. Unlike Le Méridien, this is a modern hotel with a great 5* structure: gym, spa, steam, but no pool. Service is impeccable, with super friendly and competent staff. Book here.
Do you have hotel recommendations in this area between Piccadilly and Leicester Square? Comment below and let me know!
London 101: Arriving & Getting Around
Sleeping in London: South Kensington/Earl’s Court
Sleeping in London: Paddington
The Easy Three Rule, feat. London