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Review: 100 Queen’s Gate, South Kensington: the last stop on my Hilton Curio hotel tour of London

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This is our review of the 100 Queen’s Gate hotel, part of Hilton’s Curio Collection.

If you have been following my ‘staycation’ reviews of London hotels, you’ll know that I’ve been making my way through Hilton’s six Curio Collection hotels.

As one of Hilton’s ‘collection’ brands, Curio brings together high-end independent boutique properties, letting you earn and spend Hilton Honors points and enjoy your Hilton Honors status benefits at additional hotels.

Review: 100 Queen's Gate hotel, South Kensington

Curio hotels are of a high standard but do not have to meet strict Hilton ‘brand standards’, allowing the operators to exercise their creativity. We’ve generally been very impressed by the Curio Collection hotels we’ve visited, and Rob has a very positive review from Reykjavik in the pipeline.

After reviewing The Westminster in 2021, I managed to review a further four of the London Curio hotels in 2023:

With the Canary Wharf site seemingly closed for good, this left only one hotel for me to visit – 100 Queen’s Gate. Hilton kindly arranged my stay for review purposes.

The hotel website is here.

100 Queen’s Gate location

The hotel takes its name from its address, located in South Kensington, West London. If you’ve never been to South Kensington, simply think of the most stereotypical London neighbourhood with tall whitewashed townhouses and leafy streets and you’ve got it.

Review: 100 Queen's Gate hotel, South Kensington

The hotel, which comprises six interconnected townhouses, sits on the corner of Queen’s Gate and Old Brompton Road. (This is not the road Harrods is on, which is Brompton Road, although it is only a modest stroll away.) It is just a five minute walk from South Kensington Underground Station with access to the District, Circle and Piccadilly Lines.

The area is largely residential, with a variety of cafes, bakeries and restaurants on Old Brompton Road. Fulham Road is just a couple of minutes away.

However, the big attraction is the hotel’s proximity to the museums. The Natural History Museum, the Science Museum and the Victoria and Albert Museum are around eight minutes away. And, of course, you have Hyde Park and the Albert Memorial within reach as well – just walk to the top of Queen’s Gate and you’re in the park. The Royal Albert Hall is also walkable.

Inside 100 Queen’s Gate

As mentioned above, the hotel is a conversion of six townhouses. This gives it charm but, of course, causes some issues as we will see.

The main hotel lobby is on the ground floor of one of these townhouses:

Review: 100 Queen's Gate hotel, South Kensington

There’s a stylish seating area on the left:

Review: 100 Queen's Gate hotel, South Kensington

…. whilst check in desks are on the right:

Review: 100 Queen's Gate hotel, South Kensington

Rooms at 100 Queen’s Gate

The hotel was clearly trying to impress because I was upgraded to one of the six duplex suites situated in the former attic of the building. (There are six because there were six townhouses.)

However, I also made sure to see an entry level room. The hotel has a significant number of room types due to the nature of the building.

It is important to note that some rooms do not have windows, or have internal windows or frosted windows. About 15-20% are so called ‘Atrium’ rooms. The bad news is that redemptions are likely to book into these Atrium rooms so this is not necessarily the best place to spend your Hilton Honors points.

The smallest room type is called a ‘Cosy Double’. This comes in a standard and ‘Cosy Atrium’ (no window) configuration. Due to high occupancy, the hotel could only show me a normal Cosy Double with window:

Review: 100 Queen's Gate hotel, South Kensington

This room type is actually one of the hotel’s ‘old style’ rooms with old soft furnishings. They are slowly rolling out a new look with updated soft products, which they are required to do every seven years. That said, the room looked very smart and was very well maintained – I wouldn’t have known if they had not told me.

At 14-18sqm the room is undoubtedly cosy (albeit bigger than the capsule-style citizenM hotels) but you still have space at the far end for a seat and table:

Review: 100 Queen's Gate hotel, South Kensington

…. and a small desk:

Review: 100 Queen's Gate hotel, South Kensington

The bathroom features a shower:

Review: 100 Queen's Gate hotel, South Kensington

That’s a Cosy Double. Small, although by London standards not excessively so, and you still get a desk, table and mini bar.

Suites at 100 Queen’s Gate

Let’s take a look at one of the Duplex Suites. This is a mid-tier suite – above a Townhouse Studio but below The Queen’s Gate Suite.

The selling point is obviously the unique duplex loft conversion. Each of these six suites is named after famous British people and I thought the ‘Blue Plaque’ signage was clever:

Review: 100 Queen's Gate hotel, South Kensington

The room opens out onto a living space, with a staircase immediately to the right.

Review: 100 Queen's Gate hotel, South Kensington

A large sofa-bed is flanked on either side by the mini bar. A stocked fridge is on the left whilst a kettle and Nespresso machine are on the right:

Review: 100 Queen's Gate hotel, South Kensington

Opposite the sofa is a large TV as well as an armchair, and there is a padded bench in the window.

Review: 100 Queen's Gate hotel, South Kensington

Speaking of windows, here is the beautiful view across Kensington. I felt like I had stepped into the Banks’ family home from Mary Poppins. You could even see Battersea and Westminster.

Review: 100 Queen's Gate hotel, South Kensington

Head up the stairs and you’ll find the bedroom and bathroom.

Review: 100 Queen's Gate hotel, South Kensington

Here is the view down to the living room:

Review: 100 Queen's Gate hotel, South Kensington

The only thing looking a bit dated is the bathroom, which looks a little mid-2000s with the tiling and shower-above-tub combo. That said, it is clean and well maintained:

Review: 100 Queen's Gate hotel, South Kensington

Toiletries are Molton Brown in wall-mounted pump bottles. They’re a little utilitarian:

Review: 100 Queen's Gate hotel, South Kensington

The bedroom is next door and features pocket doors – helpful if you’re staying as a family and the kids are in the sofa bed downstairs.

There is a king bed with plenty of charging options on both sides:

Review: 100 Queen's Gate hotel, South Kensington

The pillows supplied were quite thin – which I like – but are obviously not to everyone’s tastes. It would have been good to have two different types. The dressing gowns equally feel a little cheap and scratchy.

Review: 100 Queen's Gate hotel, South Kensington

Opposite the bed is another flat screen TV. Annoyingly, we were unable to cast to the TV from our own devices. I queried this and was told that the hotel is in the process of switching to a new Hilton technology standard called ‘Connected Room’ which will allow you to control and cast to the TV as well as control air conditioning and other room functions from an app. In the transition, some of the functionality of the existing TV was switched off. Hopefully this is up and running soon, as I rarely find myself watching live TV these days.

A Velux skylight with electric blind brings some light into the space.

To the left of the bed is a small desk. I would have preferred a desk downstairs, in the living room window, but that presumably is less ideal when the sofa bed is in use.

Review: 100 Queen's Gate hotel, South Kensington

Left of this is a walk-in wardrobe with storage on both sides:

Review: 100 Queen's Gate hotel, South Kensington

Overall, the room feels very residential – almost as if you’re staying with friends. I’m not sure what it is – the stairs maybe? – that made it feel very homely.

Breakfast and dinner at 100 Queen’s Gate

Breakfast and dinner are both served in Cento, the hotel’s on-site restaurant. Before we get to that, I want to show you the very smart bar on the lower ground floor called ESQ:

Review: 100 Queen's Gate hotel, South Kensington

…. and the lovely conservatory where afternoon tea is served. This was surprisingly buzzy.

Review: 100 Queen's Gate hotel, South Kensington

Once you’ve had your aperitif you can head upstairs to Cento for dinner with its Mediterranean-inspired food. Starters are between £8-£12 whilst main courses vary from £13 – £23.

I went for the buratta on an ‘asparagus salad’ although mine, oddly, came with heritage tomatoes! I wasn’t bothered and raised this with the hotel afterwards to make sure their menus are accurate.

Review: 100 Queen's Gate hotel, South Kensington

I then had the grilled sea bass with a side of grilled veggies:

Review: 100 Queen's Gate hotel, South Kensington

The waiter told us that the bass, which was delicious, is cooked over an open flame. What’s nice is that the portions are not massive, although you do need to order sides as mains don’t typically come with any carbohydrates.

Breakfast is also served here and features a small buffet. There’s a small range of cheeses, cold cuts and yoghurt etc:

Review: 100 Queen's Gate hotel, South Kensington

…. as well as bread and pastries:

Review: 100 Queen's Gate hotel, South Kensington

The hot buffet features staple full English items, but nothing more. However, the fried eggs and scrambled eggs were excellent – some of the best I’ve had from a buffet – so I was perfectly happy:

Review: 100 Queen's Gate hotel, South Kensington

Conclusion

What I like about the Curio brand is that each hotel can bring its own character, ranging from the industrial aesthetic of The Gantry and Hart Shoreditch to the modern take on traditional spaces at 100 Queen’s Gate.

By and large, I think 100 Queen’s Gate does a good job, although I would splash out for one of the larger rooms or suites. The public spaces on the ground floor are very well done. The rooms are stylish and exceptionally well maintained, with nods to the building’s history. Only the bathrooms feel dated, if only stylistically.

The only thing to watch out for is the room type you are booking, as not all rooms have windows. Fortunately, the hotel is very transparent about this and is clear during the booking process which do and which don’t. Anything with ‘Atrium’ in the name does not have an external window.

Rates currently start at £150 per night for a entry-level room or £500 for the duplex suite. Redemptions start from around 50,000 points per night, in line with our standard valuation of 0.33p per Hilton Honors point.

Given that this is one of the most expensive parts of London to live in, it’s a decent deal – especially as the location allows you to spend your time around Hyde Park, the South Kensington museums, Fulham Road and Kings Road without having to go near a tube or a taxi.

You can find out more, and book, on the Hilton website here.


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Comments (50)

This article is closed to new comments. Feel free to ask your question in the HfP forums.

  • Can says:

    The hotel seems much better than I anticipated. I drive by it all the time and had my eye on it..

    • Rob says:

      Oddly, despite my daughter being in the school on Queen’s Gate and living about 90 seconds away, I had never been inside until I did the ‘Best Bed At The Bridge’ event last month and I got picked up there. The public areas are far, far nicer than you would expect.

  • mhughes says:

    I understand of course the whole “aspirational” thing of a hotel wanting to put its best foot forward, which is fine if this was simply an advertisement, it’s similar to car avderts showing the top of the range sports model, whereas most will buy a lot further down the ladder.

    By this isn’t an advert, it’s a review of the hotel. And it terms of “In what way would Rhys actually sleeping in that standard room – as opposed to going in and taking the pictures – have made the review more relevant to you? “, that’s a startling question from what is a seasoned hotel review site. I have learned from the comments that someone who has stayed in a similar room found it noisy and also very warm. Perhaps these entry rooms are on lower floors, beside the entertainment area of the hotel, face out onto the street, have single glazed windows, have very busy corridors, maybe the quality of the mattress is quite poor in those rooms, maybe the maintenance of the bathroom or water pressure isn’t as well maintained as the £500 a night suites…but all we’ll know is the experience of staying in 1 of only 6 such rooms in the hotel. One assumes the review isn’t for the pleasure of the reviewer, but to partake information that a “typical” stayer might find useful, not one of 6 possible guests.

    • Rob says:

      But only a handful of rooms are downstairs in the vicinity of the bar, so it’s an equally niche opinion. It’s a big building as you can see from the pictures.

      • Andre says:

        it’s a big building – and a labyrinth – very difficult to actually make a decent choice and unlike what you indicate, the room info isn’t helping and choosing the room with online check in is a hit and miss -if you actually want to sleep, just avoid any road side room because of the street noise and any 5/6 floor as the built in airco units are noisy

        • Andre says:

          actually, if you combine the no window rooms, the 5/6 floor not being ok and none of the front rooms, only 1/3 of the rooms are kind of ok (i.e. 2nd 3rd and 4th floor at the backside of the buidling)… small and dark as well but cosy indeed

  • Andrew. says:

    I really, really like those Molton Brown “Signature” dispensers. No sharp corners for a start, goodness knows how many times I’ve bashed an elbow or arm on badly situated regular ones. They don’t look like they’ll rust either.

    After seeing them on here now having a nose around on the MB site to see if I can buy them for at home.

    • Ruralite says:

      At least those look as though they are securely fixed to the shower wall. At the Glasgow Hilton a couple of years ago one of their wall mounted dispensers fell off as I pressed it and landed on my foot and it hurt!

  • His Holyness says:

    Really looking forward to my suite upgrade when I next stay here.

  • Seagull says:

    @Rob I totally appreciate it’s your site and of course you can do with it whatever you so wish, but as with others (by the sounds of comments in this and recent review articles) the usefulness of these pieces is becoming less and less. There seems no desire to accept any kind of constructive criticism or questioning, your replies to comments are always dismissive and putting people down. Of course we realise that hotels will comp a room for the trade, but you can’t keep blindly telling us that you get the same experience as if I booked a room for cash. Clearly in this case there are some who have stayed at the hotel multiple times and have had issues with it. There are people who will book the more expensive room, but there is still a large part of the HfP readership who don’t. You’re increasingly alienating them, but maybe that’s an editorial decision. Equally I know no one is forcing me to read the article, it’s my choice and in the last 6 months I read less and less. The value for me is in the forum.

    • Rob says:

      We don’t say that we get the same experience that you would get if you turned up and paid cash for a base room.

      There are 2 sorts of HfP review:

      *we pay our own money, so we get what you get (except we have elite status with everyone, so probably not) but you probably won’t get a review of the restaurant or spa or bar and you won’t see pics of any other rooms – basically you’ll get some room pictures, the lobby and breakfast, and we may be in the hotel for under 12 hours. These can be REALLY boring. There was a good reason why, for example, Corinthia Lisbon which I referenced in the GHA article today didn’t get a full review.

      (To be honest, except in exceptional circumstances, we have stopped reviewing hotels we pay for ourselves because there is no ‘meat’ in the content. Check in, drop bag, off to whatever event we’re in town for, eat out, back late, breakfast, check out. It’s not hugely exciting to write or read. 2 of the 3 Iceland hotels I was in last week won’t be covered.)

      *the hotel comps it, we get a full hotel tour, you get to see the restaurant food (because we’re comped it), we see all the rooms, the spa etc, learn the story of the hotel, spend a couple of days really getting into the place, meet the GM – these can be REALLY interesting, eg Carlton Cannes, Andaz Prague.

      Up to you which sort you believe is most useful. I personally lean to the latter.

      Company policy is that if you get given a suite you can keep it but you need to ask to see another room too.

  • Stu_N says:

    I ended up what I think was a windowless room at Lost Property at St Paul’s last month – cash stay and HH Gold though I did check in late and the Online Check-in had me in a ground floor room behind reception. It was dark when I arrived in the evening and barely light when I left in the morning so made no difference but no mention in room descriptions that I can see – at least 100 QG are upfront about it.

  • Ant says:

    I really enjoyed this, thank you! And at those prices would probably stump up for the suite – it looks great. I really like the feel of the common areas and the prices at the restaurant sound good too.

    While I often get the cheapest room I don’t mind paying a more when I feel it’s good value and I think this could be one of those circumstances where it’s worth it – especially if the standard rooms are more like £250 as commented above.

  • Jake says:

    I booked the standard room here and as Diamond did not receive any upgrade, even though there were plenty of rooms available on the app. I did not press as I was mostly out and about, but would not return.

    • Andre says:

      i share your experience; same status, rarely upgraded; i have had a (useless) interaction with the management about it; once they did a “special upgrade” for me as a compensation for prior issues and the room wasn’t even clean !

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