Tried & Tested

Hotel review: Premier Inn London Paddington Basin

19 Jul 2023 by Mark Caswell
Premier Inn London Paddington Basin (image supplied by Golin PR)

Background

Opened in March 2022, the Premier Inn London Paddington Basin is the group’s largest non-airport property in Greater London at some 393 rooms.

The new-build hotel is part of a wider development which also houses the Wilde Aparthotels by Staycity Paddington, which I reviewed earlier this year.

The Premier Inn property is one of four set to open under the Premier Inn and hub by Premier Inn brands in London’s Paddington / Marylebone districts in the next few years, adding over 1,000 rooms to the catchment area.

The others are the Premier Inn Marylebone (Old Marylebone Road), and a dual-branded Premier Inn and Hub by Premier Inn on Paddington’s Eastbourne Terrace.

Whitbread to open Paddington hotel

Where is it?

Just off the A40, around ten minutes’ walk from London Paddington station, with its links to the Heathrow Express, national rail, and the Elizabeth, Bakerloo, Circle and District, and Hammersmith and City Underground lines.

The two sections of Edgware Road Underground station are slightly closer, with links to the Bakerloo, Circle and District, and Hammersmith and City lines.

The property is also a couple of minutes’ walk from Paddington Basin, with several restaurants, bars and shops in the immediate vicinity including Pizza Express, Brewdog and Tesco Express, as well as Openaire – described as the UK’s first “float-in cinema”.

Note there is no onsite parking for guests.

Premier Inn London Paddington Basin (image supplied by Golin PR)

What’s it like?

I arrived at around 1600 on a Saturday afternoon and the hotel was busy – as well as all of the self-service check-in kiosks being in use there was also a small queue for the manned check-in desk, and several guests sitting in the lobby area.

I was quickly seen though, and the receptionist asked if I had stayed at the property before. When I said I hadn’t, she ran through how the wifi and breakfast service worked.

The entrance to the hotel’s Bar + Block restaurant is off the lobby and down a set of stairs to the basement level, and by the lift there were a couple of vending machines for drinks and snacks.

For now the hotel looks across to the gargantuan Hilton London Metropole (one of London’s biggest hotels at nearly 1,100 rooms), although a building site in between the properties will eventually house 2 Merchant Square, a 16-storey office building.

Note that although the Premier Inn and Wilde properties are next to each other, the entrance to the Premier Inn is on the other side of the building – presumably to avoid congestion and allow both to have ample signage outside.

Premier Inn London Paddington Basin (image supplied by Golin PR)

Rooms

I was staying in a Premier Plus room on the 14th floor of the hotel – floors 14 to 19 are reserved for this room category. The area where the hotel is located is pretty built-up, and there’s a lot of building work currently going on, so I was pleasantly surprised to have a view of the tree-filled Paddington Green below me.

This was my first time staying in a Premier Plus room – for those readers not familiar with it, the group launched the upgraded room concept as a trial back in 2019, not long after Travelodge launched its own SuperRooms offering.

Premier Plus has since rolled out to over 100 properties in key city locations including London, Cardiff, Edinburgh, Glasgow, Newcastle, Birmingham, Manchester and Bath.

Premier Inn London Paddington Basin (credit: Mark Caswell)

Upgraded features include a comfortable armchair and foot stool, a fridge (empty except for a bottle of complimentary water), a Nespresso coffee machine, a couple of Green & Black’s chocolates, a vanity area with stool, hair dryer and backlit mirror, and an iron and ironing board.

Premier Plus guests also benefit from Ultimate Wifi, which the group says has “a stronger connection than our Standard WiFi”. I used the connection to stream music during my stay, and did not experience any issues.

Bathrooms are also upgraded, with a large walk-in shower offering both monsoon and normal shower heads. Premier Inn recently partnered with with British brand Baylis & Harding for its bathroom amenities, and Premier Plus rooms get products from the group’s Goodness range, including an Oud, Cedar and Amber handwash, and a choice of Lavender and Bergamot or Oud, Cedar and Amber body washes.

These products smelled great, although my wife questioned why there was a choice of two body washes in the shower, but no shampoo.

Premier Inn London Paddington Basin (credit: Mark Caswell)

Finally Premier Inn has partnered with visual arts organisation Project Art Works, to feature prints of works in Premier Plus rooms – in my case a piece by Claire Matthews (more information on the partnership can be found here).

Other features included an open cupboard with hangers, three coat hooks close to the door, and a padded seat next to the window. The desk had an angle lamp and several plug sockets – indeed I counted at least nine sockets around the room as well as several USB ports.

Overall I was really impressed by the room – it was light, modern, well thought out and offering a good level of amenities for a budget hotel.

Premier Inn London Paddington Basin (credit: Mark Caswell)

Food and drink

Whitbread operates several F&B brands, from Beefeater and Brewers Fayre to Table Table, Cookhouse +Pub, and Thyme. Almost all Premier Inn properties will have some sort of dining outlet, and in this case it is Bar + Block, which the group describes as “a stylish steakhouse and bar serving up quality cuts, handmade burgers, and more”.

As you would expect for a hotel of this size, the restaurant and bar take up a large space, located in the basement of the property. We visited for breakfast, which costs £8.50 for the unlimited continental option, and £10.50 for cooked breakfast (two kids eat for free with each full paying adult).

Decor is contemporary, with wood-clad and exposed brick walls and a mixture of dining tables and larger communal tables with stool seating. Despite being in the basement of the property there is some natural light as the ceiling extends up to four floors high through an atrium in some places.

There was a good range of breakfast choices, from the standard cooked option including hash browns and scrambled / fried eggs, to crumpets, American pancakes, a huge display of croissants, cereals, fruit, yoghurts and a several coffee machines. Gluten free and plant-based options were also available.

There was an array of menus available on a table opposite the hot buffet, for settings including Sunday lunch, bottomless lunch, main course, early lunch and dinner and drinks.

I didn’t have time to look at them all, but have since checked and they are all on the Bar + Block website. Dishes range from steaks and burgers to salads and small plates priced at three for £15 or four for £20. When we were staying a meal deal was also advertised consisting of a two-course dinner, drink and breakfast for £26.99.

Premier Inn London Paddington Basin (image supplied by Golin PR)

Meetings

None

Leisure

None

Verdict

The hotel is in a great location for access to Heathrow and the west of London, and I was impressed with both the Premier Plus room and the Bar + Block restaurant, neither of which I had experienced before.

FACT BOX

  • Best for The great transport links to and from Paddington station, including the Heathrow Express and Elizabeth Line
  • Don’t miss The upgraded amenities of the Premier Plus rooms, on the upper floors of the hotel
  • Price Internet rates for a flexible midweek stay in September start from £203 for a standard room, and £219 for a Premier Plus room
  • Contact Premier Inn London Paddington Basin, Paddington Exchange, N Wharf Rd, London W2 1LF; +44 (0)300 373 0052; premierinn.com
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