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Review: we try the new Aerotel hotel, inside Heathrow Terminal 3

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This is our review of the Plaza Premium-operated Aerotel hotel inside Heathrow Terminal 3.

Better 18 months late than never, the new Aerotel inside Heathrow Terminal 3 has finally opened.  Anika was originally booked to stay there in April 2018.  The delay was so long that Anika has managed to marry, move temporarily to the US and become 39 weeks pregnant since then 🙂  The final review therefore fell to me.

The location of Aerotel makes it ideal for anyone flying with Virgin Atlantic, Delta, Qantas, Cathay Pacific, American Airlines or the handful of British Airways flights that depart from Terminal 3. It is also within walking distance of Terminal 2, and you can use bus, tube and train within the free Heathrow zone to get to other terminals.

To avoid confusion, it is LANDSIDE.

Aerotel provided us with a free room for review purposes.

Aerotel London Heathrow Terminal 3 review

Where is Aerotel?

Aerotel is owned by Plaza Premium, the company that also operates a variety of lounges worldwide.  This includes the Terminal 2 lounge (review) which has won the Skytrax World’s Best Independent Airport Lounge for three consecutive years.

This is not the first Aerotel to open. They are also available in Abu Dhabi, Beijing (the new Daxing airport), Cebu, Guangzhou, Kuala Lumpur, Muscat, Rio and Singapore.

They are generally bookable by the hour although there is a six hour minimum at Heathrow. The concept is that if you are connecting or have an early morning flight, all you need is a place to crash and freshen up. You do not need the myriad of amenities – and therefore additional cost – that most conventional hotel concepts include.

The Aerotel at Heathrow Terminal 3 is located in the arrivals portion of the terminal. If you are arriving by tube, make sure to follow signs for arrivals. These are not always clearly signposted as you are walking against the usual flow of traffic! The lobby is at the opposite end of where you would walk out from arrivals, next to the rental car counters. If you keep walking straight you will see it.

Aerotel London Heathrow Terminal 3 review

Whilst it IS sign posted, the logo is very small and makes it very hard to see from a distance.  That said, the signs have been up since early 2018, so regular Terminal 3 travellers will be familiar with them even though the hotel was not open!

Aerotel London Heathrow Terminal 3 review

The lobby, however, is open to the terminal and is the most stylish thing in the arrivals area!

Aerotel London Heathrow Terminal 3 review

Whilst the lobby is on the ground floor, all the rooms and amenities are on floors 1 and 2, accessible via staircase or lift. I had a room on the second floor, which is also the location of the ‘Library’ lounge dining concept.

The rooms at Aerotel Heathrow

Here is my room, a double:

Aerotel London Heathrow Terminal 3 review

andAerotel London Heathrow Terminal 3 review

… although single rooms and family rooms are also available. None of the rooms, as far as I am aware, have windows.

As you can see, the rooms are small. The bed is up against the far wall and there is a small walking space around the other two sides. There is a small surface for opening your suitcase and hanging a few items, and that is it. You also have a kettle and a couple of mugs and a selection of teas, as well as a wall-mounted TV and free WiFi.

The bathroom is equally small, although with a large shower! I struggled to photograph it due to the angles:

Aerotel London Heathrow Terminal 3 review

The shower is recessed into the rear slightly more, making it a larger space. It is stocked with reusable pump-action Urban Skincare products.

Aerotel London Heathrow Terminal 3 review

The Library, AKA the restaurant-lounge

Marketing material also mentions the Library, which is a sort of restaurant-lounge concept. I was eager to check this out although, ironically, it has no books stocked!

Aerotel London Heathrow Terminal 3 review

It was much smaller than I expected, although I suppose with just two floors this isn’t a particularly big hotel. I was the only guest when I arrived, although someone turned up after me.

Aerotel London Heathrow Terminal 3 review

Inside the Library you’ll find a selection of papers and magazines, including The Times and FT, as well as 24 hour news on TV (muted) and a departures board for all Heathrow terminals.

Aerotel London Heathrow Terminal 3 review

There is also a cafeteria style fridge with snacks, drinks and sandwiches:

Aerotel London Heathrow Terminal 3 review

In addition, you can order from the small a la carte menu. This includes an all day breakfast, soup, beef bourguignon, chicken tikka masala, vegan Thai vegetable curry, vegetable lasagne, stir fry and king prawn Wonton soup. The most expensive item is £10 which seems remarkable for an airport hotel!

I went for the beef bourguignon:

Aerotel London Heathrow Terminal 3 review

As well as a small dessert:

Aerotel London Heathrow Terminal 3 review

This is obviously not Michelin dining. I would say the food is about on par with what you would find in a decent airport lounge. For £10 or less, however, it is very good value. Even an airport Wetherspoons would set you back more.

Conclusion

Apart from the lounge there are no other amenities. No gym or swimming pool, or other public spaces …. which is fine by me.

Aerotel does what it sets out to do very well: gives you a space to rest and refresh without all the extra bits you don’t need.  In fact, I was surprised at how nice the rooms looked despite their size.  The bathrooms, too, look stylish.

Pricing seems a little high at the moment but it depends on your length of stay.  The Hilton Garden Inn attached to Terminal 2 is walkable from Terminal 3 although it is a long trot via the tunnel which links both terminals to the tube.  (Our Hilton Garden Inn Heathrow Terminal 2 review is here.)

If you are flying in or out of Terminal 3 then Aerotel wins for convenience.  If you are using one of the other terminals the existing on-site hotels (Sofitel at T5, Hilton / Premier Inn / Crowne Plaza / HI Express / Yotel at T4, Hilton Garden Inn at T2) offer more space and more services and will be handier.

Until the end of December you can use the promo code ‘LHRAER30’ which gets you 30% off. You can see more about Aerotel on the website here.

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Comments

  1. The Original David says:

    “Pricing seems a little high at the moment”

    Any indication of how rates compare to the other on-site hotels you mentioned?

    Also, had you already eaten half of your beef before you took the photo or is 5 lumps of meat all you get?!

  2. Russell Gowers says:

    I’m not one of those people who demand four acres of floor space in a hotel room… but that room size is intolerable. I’d feel like a battery hen.

  3. Phil Gollings says:

    Unless you reviewed it after a long uncomfortable BA flight with 2 people and 2 suitcases, pushing these suitcases over the thick carpeted corridors and through the tight access doors then I suggest you review it again as passengers would use it.
    We have just left a ‘double’ room and found it annoying to be crammed into such a small windowless space. There is nowhere to put never mind search through a suitcase.
    Within the room there is a bright neon green light in your eye line when you are in bed, and a bright aircon panel which illuminate the whole room, making sleep difficult.
    Check in was a painful 10 minutes ( no other customers) as we had arrived 15 minutes before our booked time due to the flight arriving early and no one knew what to do as the computer wouldn’t produce our keys until our booked arrival time.

    Whilst we were waiting a couple of young female travellers checked in and were given a free breakfast, but we were not.

    Unless you have no luggage and do not want to walk a few more steps then the T2 Garden Inn is much better or book in front and get the Sofitel in T5

  4. Defcon5 says:

    Timely post as I need this in T3 in a couple of weeks to shower up before a meeting in town, food and sleep won’t be necessary.

    However not sure that discount code is working properly? It doesn’t seem to adjust down the price.

  5. I’ve stayed at the Muscat Aerotel which is basically a proper 4 star hotel that happens to be airside and makes some sense for a long transit.

    This looks more like the Royal Park Haneda at HND (i.e. a landside capsule-type hotel with small rooms). That’s fine at HND where i) capsule hotels are culturally accepted and ii) there is only one other hotel on site, but I’m not sure it works at LHR.

    Here the target market is presumably to rip off first time travellers through LHR who don’t know you can get the much better HGI T2/Crowne Plaza T4/Hilton T4 attached to the airport in exchange for 15 minutes of time and no more cash. Have a feeling the pricing will end up dropping (twice the price of Yotel currently for longer stays) and this may even end up on Priority Pass at some point.

    • I think you mean the First Cabin hotel at HND domestic terminal. The Royal Park hotel is good 3/4* hotel in the international terminal.

  6. TGLoyalty says:

    Looks like somewhere you need to stay as HBO.

    Tbh I don’t understand why you’d use it vs a full service hotel that a few more mins walk.

  7. I scrolled down to this comments section specifically to see the post saying “full of EE prostitutes” and then a reply making a joke about mobile phones, as this is what I’ve come to expect on hotel reviews at LHR, but there’s no such comments. I’m disappointed.

    • Colin MacKinnon says:

      Not enough space for whips and handcuffs!

      Seriously, I refuse – when a couple – to stay in a bed shoved up against a wall. It is surprising just how often this is now considered acceptable in a budget hotel or any grade if Airbnb.

      • Seems to be shriking a normal room rather than rethinking layout.
        CitizenM at AMS has a better shape given small floor area – room is the width of the bed which is at the end – accessing one side is enough.
        That gives space to put the suitcases on the floor and open them.
        And the bed is high so spare bedding and more space is in a huge drawer under the bed.
        At least Aerotel looks to have a door on the shower – the lack of that at Bloc at LGW means the floor around loo and basin is all wet once one has had shower, which is why I avoid there now.

    • David – I was thinking the same thing, it’s normally the first comment on a review of a hotel at LHR!

  8. Tom,

    The Royal Park at Haneda is a full-service hotel and not a capsule hotel in any normal sense of the word. I always stay there before and after flying in or out.

  9. I walked past it earlier without clicking on that a review had just been done.
    Too busy whining about how I had to walk all the way across arrivals (after following the one sign I saw), outside past the Emirates Chauffeur place to get a toilet in a bus waiting room.

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