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The Cardiff Hotel in Paddington has been run by the same family since 1958, which gives it a welcoming, homely feel. One of the many low-cost tourist-class hotels situated around Norfolk Square, the hotel overlooks an attractive landscaped garden and is housed in one of the elegant Victorian town houses, which line the streets of the surrounding area. Paddington is a recently regenerated, largely residential district of London, which is safe and more peaceful than more central locations. Staying in this area means that you are close to many of London's sights and attractions and you have fantastic transport links from Paddington Station, where you can catch the Heathrow Express to the airport.
The hotel's rooms range from Single to Family and the staff are very accommodating, guests who have had to make last minute additions have found an upgrade was possible at short notice. The hotel are also more than happy to place guests with mobility issues on the lower floors (because there is no lift) if requested in advance. Rooms in the hotel are very pleasant, with comfortable furnishings in a calming peach colour scheme, a nice change from the often eclectic decor of other low-cost hotels in the area. In-room amenities include a direct-dial phone, a colour TV, fresh towels and linens and more. Ironing facilities, plug adapters, fax facilities and umbrellas are available at reception, ensuring that you aren't caught short, although guests should note that 110v appliances cannot be used at the hotel. A substantial cooked breakfast is included in the room rate and wireless internet is available for a small fee, however if you fancy more choice for breakfast, you can head to the Starbucks cafe nearby and use the free Wi-Fi connection there.
The hotel is very well located for visiting London sights and attractions. Paddington itself has a great range of galleries to explore; The Alexander Fleming museum, where you can see the laboratory where the great man discovered penicillin by accident; and the Puppet Theatre Barge, a delightful treat for the kids where you can watch a puppet show on a boat. A few minutes from the hotel you will find Hyde Park, London's largest green space, where you can leave the urban sprawl behind and enjoy picnics, open-air concerts, a range of sporting activities and boating on The Serpentine Lake before you peruse the art at The Serpentine Gallery. To the west end of the park you will find Kensington Palace and Gardens, a stunning, Christopher Wren designed building filled with antiques and royal artifacts. Princess Diana lived here until her death and now it is home to her son and his wife, the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, so you may see them popping to the exclusive shops in nearby Kensington High Street. Beyond Hyde Park you will find the museum district of London, the Royal Albert Hall and much more. Shopping enthusiasts will be thrilled to find Oxford Street just a 15-minute walk away and Whiteley's shopping complex nearby as well as Harrods and Harvey Nichols department stores in Knightsbridge, a great place to fritter some money away.
The hotel is easily accessible from Paddington Station where the London Heathrow Express arrives every 15 minutes. You can also access Victoria Station for the Gatwick Express Train and King's Cross St Pancras for the Eurostar Terminal. Queensway and Bayswater Underground stations are also both a five-minute walk away. If you are driving to the hotel, it can be accessed from the main A4 road, via the M4 and M25; however, guests should note that the hotel is in the congestion charge zone. A reasonable car park choice is the NCP just a few minutes walk away in Queensway.
The Cardiff Hotel may be a budget accommodation option, but it’s a cut above your average Norfolk Square hotel, with charming rooms, friendly staff and a very convenient location it’s a good choice for the area. Previous guests have recommended the front facing rooms on the second floor of the hotel for good views. This may not suit anyone coming to London to celebrate a special occasion, but for those who just need a clean, quiet and friendly place to rest during their stay this does the job.