For the remaining two nights in London, I also redeemed 70k Club Carlson points total (and got the second night free). I think that the most luxurious hotel (or apparently as some people put it) that you can redeem Club Carlson points for in London is the May Fair Hotel. It is described as a luxurious five star hotel in a ‘unique’ location.
We took an uber from the Plaza on the River to the May Fair for about ~£8 and the journey took about fifteen minutes. When we arrived at the hotel, we were welcomed by some rather *exclusive* cars parked in front of it.
I don’t know how to put it.. but we sort of didn’t fit in with the other people staying at the hotel… A five star luxurious hotel and people are walking around in fancy outfits and here show up two world travellers in their regular clothing… the doorman didn’t even open the door for us and we stood right in front of him and the door.
We were however welcome by a friendly front desk agent who quickly processed our check-in and informed me that our room had been upgraded to a deluxe room (which I think was a total lie, since the room was nothing special at all – just a bit bigger). He welcomed us to the hotel and showed us the way to our room. What pissed me off the most is the looks we got for wearing normal clothing from the other guests.. I mean I could still be a billionaire and wear jeans and a t-shirt, no?! The joke was on them since I paid using points and not any money (well, besides the annual fee of the credit card)!
The lobby didn’t have that ‘grand’ feeling to it as most luxurious hotels have, and truth be told, I didn’t see this hotel as fancy at all. The exterior was nothing special (except the cars parked in front) and the inside of the hotel didn’t make me want to believe it was luxurious, I’ve seen four star hotels that have a grand entrance… and I mean.. this.. in London? And five stars.. I don’t know how…
I don’t know if the purpose of the dark lighting everywhere was to set the mood or what, but we had a hard time reading signs as we passed through the hallway.
First impressions of the room: very red and nothing special. I mean, what is so special about the room? Nothing. Although I’m not complaining since we spent the majority of the day exploring London, so I don’t really care that much about the hotel… but seeing how it was supposed to be super fancy and luxurious is what made me book it in the first place.
The room was alright and had the basic amenities such as a tea kettle, however it lacked a coffee maker. The room also lacked storage areas, there was literally a single table (combined with a minibar) and no other area where we could put our clothes or other items.
The bathroom was nice and in a very modern design, although it did have the shower/bathtub combo which I didn’t like.
The wardrobe was located in the bathroom.. which I found a bit odd and I don’t think I’ve ever seen that before, but it does make sense since you can get ready right in the bathroom.
I can’t even compare the view at all… since it was horrible compared to the Plaza on the River.
We did receive one free drink in the hotel’s bar since I’m Club Carlson Gold and decided to have a single glass of champagne. We ended up drinking it rather quickly since we got some strange looks from people.
All in all, this hotel definitely fell short of my expectations. I read some reviews online and people were generally satisfied with the service, rooms, etc. Most of the staff we came in contact with were nice, although some weren’t. I did hate the fact that we got looks from *higher class* people for not dressing super fancy.. but I mean honestly, I’m not going to walk around London in a blazer just to look nice when I’m entering the hotel.
Looking back, I think it would’ve been a wiser choice to spend two more nights at a hotel which had some sort of location by the River Thames since we might have gotten a better view. The location of the May Fair is excellent since it is super close to the major tourist areas in London and therefore we were able to gain quicker access to some areas we wanted to see. Overall, if you are looking to redeem your points and want *luxury*, then maybe the May Fair is for you. I definitely wouldn’t rate the hotel as five stars.