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Europe’s largest Residence Inn by Marriott opens in London’s Kensington

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If you travel to London for extended periods, you may want to take a look at the new Residence Inn by Marriott which has just opened in Kensington. 

Situated on Warwick Road nears Earls Court, the property contains 319 suites ranging from studios to 2-bedrooms.  All rates include free breakfast and all suites include a kitchen if you want to cook for yourself.

Residence Inn by Marriott London Kensington

It is not a new build, but a conversion and refurbishment of an apartment hotel complex called Think Apartments which opened in 2007.  The building is just behind the big Tesco supermarket that you pass on the way to Heathrow from Central London.

This will be the largest Residence Inn in Europe and the third largest globally.  This is the second Residence Inn in London following the London Bridge opening last year.

Marriott Rewards redemptions are 40,000 points per night.  1-Bed Suites are bookable on points but don’t get too excited – they are advertised as being a relatively small 24-27 square metres.  Cash rates start from £180.  The hotel website is here.


How to earn Marriott Bonvoy points and status from UK credit cards

How to earn Marriott Bonvoy points and status from UK credit cards (January 2022)

There are various ways of earning Marriott Bonvoy points from UK credit cards.  Many cards also have generous sign-up bonuses.

The official Marriott Bonvoy American Express card usually comes with 20,000 points for signing up, 2 points for every £1 you spend and 15 elite night credits per year.

You can apply here.

American Express Marriott Bonvoy credit card

Marriott Bonvoy American Express

20,000 points sign-up bonus and 15 elite night credits Read our full review

You can also earn Marriott Bonvoy points by converting American Express Membership Rewards points at the rate of 2:3.

Do you know that holders of The Platinum Card from American Express receive FREE Marriott Bonvoy Gold status for as long as they hold the card?  It also comes with Hilton Honors Gold, Radisson Rewards Gold and MeliaRewards Gold status.  We reviewed American Express Platinum in detail here and you can apply here.

American Express Platinum card Amex

The Platinum Card from American Express

30,000 points and an unbeatable set of travel benefits – for a fee Read our full review

You can also earn American Express Membership Rewards points with American Express Gold (20,000 bonus points), the American Express Rewards Credit Card (5,000 bonus points) and – for small business owners – American Express Business Gold (20,000 bonus points) and Business Platinum (40,000 bonus points).

Click here to read our detailed summary of all UK credit cards which can be used to earn Marriott Bonvoy points

(Want to earn more hotel points?  Click here to see our complete list of promotions from the major hotel chains or use the ‘Hotel Offers’ link in the menu bar at the top of the page.)

Comments (108)

  • Jack says:

    Only got 50% bonus offer too.

  • Pgw says:

    I’m more interested in knowing where I can get $600 for £427!

    • Rob says:

      That was a cut and paste from an old article, sorry – still on holiday and was trying to save time.

    • John says:

      Be an employee of Eurochange

    • sunguy says:

      Well….if you are in /around London, you can get $600 for £461.5 from bestforeignexchange.com!

      • the_real_a says:

        Revolut wallet to wallet transfer is £454 currently – then pull out of ATM whilst in the US.

  • Relaxo says:

    Getting the OT ball rolling – I’ve noticed that VS only use a 747 for their Havana route. Haven’t flown in one for over a decade. Can anyone vouch for quality? Am contemplating saving some points & going for a PE rather than an upper class redemption given the old aircraft.

    • John says:

      Not sure how those two things are linked. I go out of my way not to fly a 747 except in F (or on the upper deck – but still trying to find a cost-effective way to do that).

      In Y and Y+ I find 747s noisy and uncomfortable unless you know the flight will only be half-full. However, I can’t comment on VS PE since that airline doesn’t fly anywhere useful to me any longer.

    • Kevin says:

      In the old days Virgin had the big bar in Upper on the 747. I preferred being downstairs on those flights though upstairs is quieter. I would go Upper if I had the points. But I don’t know what condition those planes are in now, what the IFE is like, etc.

      I know there are people who miss 747s and seek them out.

  • JPV says:

    OT: In the process of booking my honeymoon. Got CW redemption to Mauritius and due to book return leg in a few days. OH is very keen on us getting two of the backwards-facing center-aisle seats. I suspect I already know the answer, but is there any way to reduce the cost of reserving CW seats? I have no BA status so I’m looking at £300 round trip just to reserve the seats

    I also need to book hotels (we are thinking a combination of the Hilton Mauritius + St Regis Mauritius). I am keen to get the reservations in place soon, but should I consider waiting for any sale or other promotion event for either the hilton or SPG property? The bookings will clear out the lion’s share of my points balances. Considering trying to book a suite – but if I go for a standard redemption, do we have a decent chance of an upgrade given I will have at least gold status at both properties and it will be our honeymoon? Any tricks I should consider?

    Sorry for all the OT questions lately, promise I will stop once the honeymoon is booked!

    • Nate1309 says:

      Well there is a way but it will cost you a lot more in the long run. Have a baby.
      Have fun in Mauritius we went there for our honeymoon too and loved it, climbing le mourne and a trip to the grand basin were 2 of my favourite bits.

      • JPV says:

        Yes, that strategy might be a bit too radical for now 🙂

        But really glad to hear you enjoyed Mauritius! Thank you

    • John says:

      At the Hilton, probably yes as at least a few years ago the main guests were all random tourists booking travel agency packages so no status (and no benefits even if status)

      Points bookings are usually cancellable so you can convert to a paid booking, or rebook for fewer points if the prices drop.

    • Anna says:

      In my (limited) experience, there are usually plenty of middle seat pairs available in CW as many pax either want window seats or don’t want to fly backwards (like my son whom flying backwards makes sick!). I’d save the £300 for something else.

    • Leo says:

      It’s status or pay I’m afraid. Or First if the route has it.

    • gary says:

      I’ve just been to Mauritius in CW with my wife and 14 month old son.

      CW – beware the flight will be full. It was 100% full for our outward and there was only one seat free on the way back.
      The middle seats are sought after by couples but 4 and 11 are bulkhead and therefore are “reserved” for those with kids <2 years.
      From looking at the cabin a lot of families were flying (1st week in July) and families tended to place their kids in the middle if a family of four.

      Based upon my filght I would say you could end up sitting apart from one another, many couples seemed to be in this situation.
      All I can suggest is eitehr pay the money or log in 24 hours before flight to select your seats.

      Hilton – I'm a gold member but there was no upgrade. Arrival drink, daily water, a Hilton bag and a voucher for a free rum cocktail for two. The only other benefit was partner stays free – you book as a single guest.

      I'd recommend not eating at the buffett as it was 2,000 MAU and for that you could eat easily at either the beach restaurant or the Thai restuarant where the quality of food was higher.
      Having said that the buffett wasn;t bad but priced on the basis that you'll pile it high.
      There is also an Indian restaurant at the back of the buffett restaurant.

      Enjoy and make sure you get a good driver.

    • Tracy says:

      Just returned from our first CW flight SFO – LGW. We were a family of 4, no status. I kept checking closer to departure date to see what seats were still available and not many were unreserved, don’t know if people or BA had reserved them though. At check in time ( 1 day before flight), there were only a few random single seats left in upper deck a380 and no fours left so I was very worried what would happen at checkin but turned out we had been pre-assigned row 14 lower deck, 4 seats across the middle which we could choose at check in. There were no other fours or twos left, just singles as far as I could tell but that could be due to the pre-assigned seats….. These were very good seats as all seats had direct aisle access so I think we got very lucky. Kids took the aisle seats and me and OH took the 2 middle seats. I don’t travel well and felt really ill travelling backwards on takeoff and landing but was ok once we were in the air, go figure. I was lucky I could swap seats with my kids if I felt ill though. I definitely could not take the backwards facing pair if it was just the two of us as I would be so ill. We have a CW flight booked for next summer for 2 adults only and we still have no status, only 35 tier points shy of bronze though and I think I might do a quick CE hop to get to bronze so i can definitely reserve a pair of seats at the window as I would cry if I had to take a middle two backwards facing seats. Just hope I can get the seats I want at 7 days out…..

  • Simonbr says:

    I suspect these IHG bonus points will not count towards their tier status, for example moving to Spire from Platinum. Is that correct?

  • Pid says:

    No they do not count towards status.

    I got the 100% bonus and it shows I can buy up to 100k, so 200k with the bonus for $1000. I thought they normally limited you to 60k in these offers.

    • Liz says:

      It’s been upped to 100k per year now so 200k during the 100% bonus.

  • Munch says:

    In the household we have 3 different SPG accounts with various points. What’s the best way to combine into one account so I can take advantage of 5 nights for 4.
    Do I transfer back to Marriott and then combine or is there a way of combining within SPG?
    The accounts are in different names but the same address – not sure if that makes any difference.

    • Rob says:

      Just do an internal SPG transfer if the addresses have matched for 30 days. Form online, takes 5 days to process.

      • rob says:

        I read somewhere that the combining points in accounts option for people at the same address will be going in August. Is this true?

        • Rob says:

          Marriott lets you combine with anyone (to 50k per year) so I wouldn’t worry.

        • Mark2 says:

          50,000 is not many hotel points, but if you have made a booking without the points they will allow you to transfer enough points to complete (although presumably only from one account).

  • HayMow says:

    O/T if I book a Hilton room for someone, not family, in London, can they get my Gold benefits (brek mainly) and I get the points? I wouldn’t be travelling. TIA

    • Crafty says:

      Named guest on your reservation can check in without you present

    • John says:

      Yes, if this is a paid booking, their name needs to be on the reservation (add it in the “additional guest” field), no need to mention that you aren’t actually coming. Alternatively, they can simply impersonate you since UK hotels don’t ask for ID for UK residents.

    • Rob says:

      Not necessarily, if the hotel realises what you’ve done. If it is a UK hotel then they should check in as you and then there won’t be a problem. Get the 2nd guest to hand over their credit card so they don’t have a chance to spot that you are not you.

      It can work without going to this trouble but I once did something similar at an IHG hotel and was refused the points because the hotel realised I was not the guest.

    • HayMow says:

      Thanks all – sound s like it could be worth a try. It can be a genuine situation that two friends plan to travel together and one can’t make it last minute, after all. It would probably be pre-paid anyway so I imagine I can advise hotel that 2nd name can check in without me.. Rob, I didn’t understand your CC comment: only 1 person will stay, not a couple, so how would the different name on credit card help?

      • John says:

        I can’t remember the last time I was asked for a credit card at a UK Hilton where I had prepaid. Perhaps being diamond helps

        • Rob says:

          From what I can tell they take a different approach to Diamond members.

    • Mr dee says:

      Yeah only thing is I would suggest you don’t charge to the room anything and just Payg as with Hilton hotels sometimes they just charge the card on file even if you have them another card and tell them to charge it, very annoying, of course unless the person booking doesn’t mind.

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