Commenter RJ Brown asks about the Sofitel London Heathrow on my post about flying British Airways from London to San Francisco.
Just changed my return seats to 5E&5F and reserved the cabana based on your notes……
Also decided to overnight in the Sofitel coming back as it appeared the only hotel that allowed a “walk” from room to terminal…..any experience with that property?
I wasn’t going to write up a report on the hotel, but figured that if someone was asking about it, that it might be of interest to others too.
Last month I needed a Heathrow overnight. And though I was arriving and departing from Terminal 3, I chose the Sofitel.
The Sofitel is attached to Terminal 5 and so most convenient for British Airways arrivals and departures. It’s also the nicest Heathrow airport hotel.
There’s a Hilton connected to Terminal 4 which is older but perfectly adequate.
But there’s nothing truly convenient to terminal 3 — you’re look at all of the Bath Road hotels, which aren’t easier to get to than the Sofitel. You take the Hotel Hoppa bus at £4 each way, and it seems to always take a long time.
In fact probably easier than staying at one of the Bath Road hotels is to take the Heathrow Express to Paddington Station where there’s a Hilton that’s connected to the station (commenter Michael also reports that there’s a Hotel Indigo there as well that I believe is around the corner rather than literally connected though others may correct me on this). The Heathrow Express departs every 15 minutes and takes 15-20 minutes of travel time. It’s probably more convenient than the Hotel Hoppa and gets you away from the airport.
I suppose I chose the Sofitel because I was finally curious to experience my free Le Club Accorhotels Platinum status in action. I’ve long suspected that top tier status in the program doesn’t provide much based on its published benefits, but since I’ve posted offers for it so often and not actually used the status I wanted to see it in practice even though it was pricier than other options and I really should have just burned Hilton HHonors points before the devaluation at the end of last month (as it is I wound up with still a few hundred thousand unredeemed HHonors points).
I had a few minutes’ wait to check-in, the hotel lobby seems busy with arrivals and departures much of the time, but otherwise wasn’t a place where people were hanging out.
I had booked the cheapest room which was one queen bed. The terms and conditions (.pdf) say that upgrades are
..in a room category immediately above (to be requested upon arrival at the hotel and subject to availability at the time of Check-in).
So I requested an upgrade and told me it was already taken care of. And indeed it was a one category upgrade from my queen room to a King bed, but otherwise no difference that I could tell (it was even a courtyard facing room).
The hotel is gorgeous, though, and the room perfectly functional with an attractive bathroom.
There was free internet in the room although they warn the free version would be slow and offer to upsell to faster internet. Indeed internet was slow and glitchy, I would lose the connection frequently but didn’t have too much trouble re-connecting when that happened.
Blackout curtains worked well, I slept wonderfully, and was well-rested to leave the property in the morning at 6am.
It’s a lovely airport hotel though in the future I’d only stay there if I was using Heathrow’s terminal 5. Otherwise I’d take a cheaper option at the Hilton for terminal 4 (or burn points), or take Heathrow Express to Paddington Station.