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Reviewed 2 August 2012

We stayed at Bankside House this summer for a second time - several years ago we were satisfied with what it offered: a very good location, friendly staff and decent comfort.
If you expect 5-star convenience and service, this would not be your place, but if you need a place to sleep after a day of tourist experiences in London for a reasonable price, it is a choice to consider.
The rooms are large enough, and although the ones we stayed at lacked a good view from the window, they offer more comfort than more expensive hotel rooms.
The breakfast is something we enjoyed much, as well as the nearby riverside and other attractions. Several Underground stations are within 10-minutes walk, and a lot of nice places to eat, have your cup of coffee or glass of beer are around.

  • Stayed: July 2012, travelled as a couple
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Thank Nicko-BG
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 31 July 2012

Opening night of the London 2012 Olympics and my friends and I thought travelling home from our days festivities would be a nightmare so we decided to stay over ...... in London ... on possibly the busiest night this city has ever seen ..... when its nigh on impossible to get a central hotel at a reasonable price at the best of times. Yeah, I don't know what we were thinking either.

We explored all our options with hotels, hostels, B+B's, different locations and the best we came up with was LSE Bankside House, a triple room B+B in a great location for £135 for the night - £45 each for B+B with an ensuite room, sounded like a bargain to me and if you look at the big picture it was a bargain.

The location was fantastic, plenty of stuff within walking distance (riverside is a 5 minute stroll away with access to the Globe, Tate M, Eye, Aquariam etc) and easy public transport access with a number of Tube stations easily walking distance with access to Northern and Jubilee lines. An added bonus was the selection of cafes/bars a stones throw from the front door (although I think these are likely to be Mon - Fri venues only).

The room was absolutely fine, considering the location, what we paid and the type of venue this is, we got what I expected: a basic dorm style room with a basic bathroom (shower with a fixed head, old and slightly stained but clean toilet and sink) - tea and coffee making facilities and complimentary toiletries were an added bonus that I wasn't expecting.

Service was ok, nothing spectacular but also nothing bad.

Breakfast was, again surprisingly good and more than I expected for the money and the type of place this is - good selection of cooked english and continental style stuff, juice, tea and coffee.

The one thing that really brings my scores down for this place was the quality of sleep. It was a late-ish night but we were still in bed by about 2.30am so plenty of time for a good 6 hours sleep, I think I fell asleep about 3.30am in the end, I was up at 6.15am and woke about every half hour in between times. There was little or even no noise from other guests to disturb us which was great but the beds were just awful, I've had more comfortable nights camping with nothing but a ground sheet and a sleeping bag. The bed wasn't just less comfortable than I am used to, or not the right kind of mattress that I personally, specifically like ...... it was more like an instrument of torture. My 2 friends had the same experience although we agree theirs were not quite as bad as mine, which not only kept me awake (and gave me backache for a couple of days after) but also kept waking my roomates up as it played what sounded like the bells of st clements every time I moved a muscle to try to get comfy.

I am a realistic traveller and I have stayed in hostels, budget hotels, tents and some seriously skanky places over the years and I do not expect luxury accommodation from a venue like this at a price like this.

I was pleasantly surprised by how good some aspects of the stay were and because of that I find it difficult to give such a low score, but ... and its a big but ....... If a hotel/hostel/B+B/any accommodation fails to give you a half decent nights sleep then it has completely failed in its entire reason for existing.

Next time, instead of staying over I'll find somewhere to go for a drink and then get the milk train home in the morning.

  • Stayed: July 2012, travelled with friends
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1  Thank amimac80
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Henry H, Manager at LSE Bankside House, responded to this reviewResponded 2 August 2012

Dear amimac80,

I would like to offer you our sincere apologies for the issues you experienced with your bed during your stay with us at Bankside House. I was glad to hear that you did find some aspects of your stay with us to be pleasant, but I would certainly agree that a satisfactory nights sleep is extremely important and I find it completely unacceptable that we failed you in this regard.

Our mattresses are regularly checked and replaced as and when necessary. If we do receive a complaint about a mattress, we investiage immediately and replace if needed. I'm very concerned that your mattresses are as bad as you described and I would like to get them replaced immediately - as i'm unable to see your details on tripadvisor, I would love for you to contact me on h.j.hayes@lse.ac.uk with your room number so I can ensure this is done.

Once again, i'm extremely sorry that your sleep was so disturbed and I really do hope that you would consider staying with us again. I'd also like to discuss this if you do get a chance to contact me! We value your comments and we will be working hard to ensure this does not happen again.

Regards,
Henry Hayes

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 28 July 2012

I stayed at the Bankside on 24 July 2012 after going to the Olympic Rehearsal on Monday night.

I have to admit I was nervous about staying after reading the reviews!

But Bankside was a pleasant surprise. The staff could not have more helpful and the room was was massive for student accommodation. LSE students are very lucky!!!

It does not have the luxury of a hotel but is clean and comfortable and provide bath towels and toiletories and breakfast in the room rate.

It does attract groups and there can be noise at night but it did not stop me sleeping.

The location is right at the centre of London and now that I have found Bankside, I will definitely be returning.

Room Tip: Think of it as a hall of residence rather than a hotel
  • Stayed: July 2012, travelled solo
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2  Thank shed35
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 24 July 2012

The only good thing of this hotel is that it is convenient to travel (Around four tube stations is roughly 5 minutes walks). Let's see how they pissed me off.

- They said that we can check in at 12.00, but guess what? On arrival date, in the early morning, I have to carry a huge luggage around London until 15.00! The worst thing is checkout at 10.00. Again carry a huge bag like a ridiculous clown in London, waiting for the departure in the early afternoon.

- 3 stars hotel, but no free wifi!!! If you have an important business, don't worry. They will charge you 2 pounds per 15 minutes for the slower-than-grandfather-of-turtle internet! And this price is included the problematic 2 minutes login problem! Terrific, right?

- I can't believe that I spent 80 pounds per night, but they limited their low-quality breakfast! You can pick up just six items (1 small sausage counts as 1 item). 2 day of stay, I have to pay an extra for more food.

- Bathroom design is totally bad. The bathroom floor and the room carpet almost connected. It was wet after taking a shower.

- No room cleaning service.

- It seems that they like to accept guests as a group. During my stay, the high schools (or middle, I'm not sure) kept making annoying noise all night! Call the reception, she couldn't do anything, but saying sorry.

- When you want to enter the building, you have to show the small document they gave you on arrival date. London rain destroyed my paper and then I asked for a new one. Guess what? 5 pounds extra for a stupid paper.

To sum up, bad hotel I've ever stayed. Think twice before making decision. I warn you!

  • Stayed: July 2012, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank Mokz
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Henry H, Manager at LSE Bankside House, responded to this reviewResponded 25 July 2012

Dear Mokz,

I was absolutely dismayed to read your review and to hear that your stay with us failed to live up to your expectations. First and foremost I would like to offer you the sincere apologies of myself and everybody else at Bankside House for not providing you with a satisfactory stay during your time with us. I have passed your comments on to the General Manager, the Front of House Manager, the Catering, Housekeeping and Security teams and we will be reviewing all of your points individually. I will also attempt to address each of them now.

Our check in time is 3.00pm and this is advertised on our website and on all of the web bookings agents through which we operate. If you are able to provide me further details of where the information of a 12.00pm check-in time was given to you, I will be happy to investigate and make sure this does not reoccur. Our check out time is 10.30am. We are always happy to store luggage for our guests, both on the day of arrival and the day of departure, and advertise this throughout reception and verbally when somebody arrives early to check in.

We acknowledge that our lack of Wi-Fi is currently a problem. We had previously been providing free Wi-Fi for guests, but were forced to drop the service at the start of this summer due to technical problems. We are currently working on having a new Wi-Fi service set up. I can only apologise that we were unable to offer it during your stay. Having taken on board your comments, we have decided to make the internet service available in reception complimentary, and will no longer be charging guests for its use.

Our breakfast is limited to six hot items per guest, but with unlimited toast, cereal and hot and cold drinks. We will be liaising further with our restaurant to ensure that an appropriate level of discretion is used when applying this limit. Once again, I apologise that you feel we let you down in this instance.

From your comments on the bathroom, it sounds like you were staying in one of our Accessible rooms, which are designed to be fully accessible for disabled guests. So that guests in a wheelchair are able to use the shower in these rooms, it is necessary to have a more open bathroom, which as you mentioned, means the room carpet can sometimes be close to run-off water from the shower. If you felt this was unacceptable, reception would have been happy to arrange a room swap for you.

Our rooms are cleaned daily, towels are changed every other day and fresh linen is provided for every guest, and changed weekly for longer stay guests. The only instance in which Housekeeping would not complete the full daily room clean is so as not to disturb a guest's belongings if they are extensively blocking this from happening. Again, if you are able to provide specific details regarding your stay I would love to receive them as I would like to investigate this further to ensure that no other guest feels that their room was not cleaned adequately during their stay. Having taken on board your comments, we will be producing a small guest information pamphlet to be left on beds for new arrivals laying out our housekeeping procedures, and ensuring guests are informed immediately if for any reason we are unable to carry out a full clean of their room.

We should always investigate noise complaints and I am sorry if this did not occur following your complaint. I will personally be speaking to our security team to ensure that we are being vigilant regarding noise complaints and immediately investigating any we receive.

I would love for you to contact me personally on h.j.hayes@lse.ac.uk so that I am able to investigate your complaint further and come to a resolution that you are happy with. I very much hope that you would consider giving Bankside House another chance, as we would all like the opportunity to show you that we are capable of providing you with a far more enjoyable and satisfactory experience than the one you feel you have received in this case.

Regards,

Henry Hayes

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Reviewed 18 July 2012

Stayed here with a student group while seeing plays at the Globe. If you are going to the Globe, the location could not be better - you can run back to the hostel during the interval to get a jumper if required! Our group has stayed here several times, with no problems. There are a lot of group bookings, lots of teenagers doing language classes, but still the building wasn't particularly noisy, and we were on the 3rd floor. I shared a double room with my partner, who was skeptical about the whole enterprise but pleasantly surprised by the quality of the room. It's a student dorm but it's clean, quiet, perfectly fine for a few nights. Staff very friendly and helpful, in my experience, both on the desk and at breakfast. Having said all that, wouldn't be my first choice for a night in London if I wasn't travelling with my students!

  • Stayed: June 2012, travelled on business
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1  Thank CityGirlCH
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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