What’s it like?
Opened in September 2008, the Ramada London Heathrow is part new-build and part conversion of the former Ramada Heathrow property that stood on the same site. The previous hotel had been of a lower quality than the new offering, which has had “London” added to the name following the hotel’s reincarnation.
Building restrictions required the cone-towered façade of the earlier property to be kept, but behind this the interior has been completely renovated and now houses the hotel’s bar, restaurant and meeting spaces. This part of the hotel is attached to the new five-storey building by a glass-roofed atrium stretching from the entrance, past reception, to the exit to the 74-space car park at the back. This has resulted in bright, airy public areas, with a modern bar adjacent to reception with large multi-coloured light shades hanging from the ceiling.
Where is it?
On the Bath Road next to Heathrow House. The hotel is further along the road than the main section of hotels with the Sheraton Skyline and the London Heathrow Marriott, but is still easily accessible from the central Heathrow bus terminal, either by Hoppa bus number H41 (tickets for the return journey can be bought from a kiosk by reception for £4) or the several public buses plying the Bath Road.
The property is actually closer to Hounslow West station than the underground station at Heathrow T1, 2, 3, so if you are heading to central London from the hotel or vice versa using the Piccadilly line, you are best off using this station as it is two stops further along the line. It’s also worth pointing out that the hotel is located opposite a parade of shops, including several takeaways and a Tesco Express.
Standard rooms are located on the first four floors, with the larger Executive rooms on the fifth floor – keycards are required to access the lift and the ground-floor corridors. Two thirds of the rooms look outwards, with the rest facing into an unused internal courtyard – these rooms are even quieter than the outward-facing ones (which are, nevertheless, double glazed) but look across to rooms on the opposite side. The hotel also has 14 “corner sets”, consisting of two corner rooms with an entrance hall and a further keycard-accessed door which can be shut, allowing families to leave the front doors of their individual rooms open but still have privacy from the rest of the hotel.
All rooms have air-conditioning, flatscreen TVs with on-demand movies, wired and wireless internet access (£6 per hour, £10 for 24 hours or a one-off charge of £19.99 is available for unlimited movies and internet use), a combined trouser press and (non-steam) iron/ironing board, a workdesk, a safe, a single or double sofa bed depending on the room, tea and coffee-making facilities and free mineral water.
Guests in Executive rooms have free access to the internet and movies, and also get two in-room magazines – Marie Claire and Business Traveller. The bathrooms feature stylish curved basins and combined bath/showers, with White Company shower gel dispensers attached to the wall. Rooms are simply decorated but are modern and perfectly adequate for a short stay.
Restaurants and bars
The hotel’s restaurant and bar are located on the ground floor next to reception. Arts Bar is a trendy area with several different styles of furniture, while past this is the all-day restaurant Arts Brasserie, where a buffet breakfast is also served. Dishes here include roasted rump of lamb, braised potato, creamed savoy cabbage and glazed carrots (£16), and oven-baked fresh pollack with ginger, spring onions and Chinese noodles (£13).
Business and meeting facilities
These are all located on the first floor of the original building, above the bar and restaurant. There are six function rooms in total, including one partly located within the building’s turret. Three of the rooms can be opened out into one space for up to 65 people, and all have natural daylight and wifi internet access. Ramada introduced a “Summit Lite” package last year, which features a limited meeting offering for a day-delegate rate of £20.09.
A well-thought out property with attractive public areas and well sound-proofed rooms. If you are looking for a hotel with extensive conference spaces or leisure facilities, then this is not it, but as a modern, mid-market offering this is a good addition to the hotels in and around Heathrow airport.
How many rooms? There are 200, of which 28 are Executive rooms.
Room highlights The bathrooms with their stylish basins and White Company amenities.
Price Internet rates for a midweek stay in early May started from £89 for a Standard Double room including breakfast.
Ramada London Heathrow, 745 Bath Road, Cranford; tel +44 (0)844 815 9041; ramadajarvis.co.uk