Search for cheapest prices: Luna And Simone Hotel
The Luna and Simone hotel is an extremely popular family-run budget hotel located on Belgrave road in Victoria. The hotel offers very competitive room rates and is convenient for seeing the sights of London. The Tate Britain gallery, which has an extensive collection of classic paintings, is about five minutes walk from the hotel and access to the South Bank is via Vauxhall Bridge. The South Bank is home to some of London's best exhibition centres and a major cultural hub. Here you will find the Southbank Centre, British Film Institute, National Theater, Hayward Gallery, Royal Festival Hall and the London Eye for panoramic views of the city. The London Aquarium is also along the South bank and you can arrange boat trips down the River Thames for an alternative view of the city.
The hotel's bedrooms are simple but clean, well maintained and comfortable and more than suitable for a city stay, especially if you won't be spending much time in the hotel. Rooms range from Single to Quadruple sizes and contain a range of handy amenities to ensure you have all you need for your stay. These include a television, hairdryer, tea and coffee making facilities, tiled en-suite bathrooms with power showers, a safety deposit box and washbasin. A reliable Wi-Fi connection is available in rooms and a full English cooked breakfast is included in the room rate; however, this finishes at 8:30am and some guests staying on leisure have found this to be too early and the selection a little bland, so you may wish to explore the local cafes instead. Patisserie Valerie does some delectable pastries and cakes and Giraffe has some tasty brunch options. Staff at the hotel are very friendly and helpful, and on hand at all hours of the day. They will be happy for you to leave your luggage with them while you explore, or offer some of their local knowledge.
The hotel doesn't cater for evening meals, but there are plenty of restaurants to tempt your taste buds, located just a few minutes walk away, including Kazans for Iranian cuisine, Mekong for Vietnamese cuisine and UNO for Italian fare. Grumbles is a very popular cafe nearby, which is always filled with locals, a sure sign of good food!
The hotel is also close to the iconic attractions of Westminster. Westminster Abbey is the site of coronations and royal weddings and has architecture dating back to the 11th century, although you can also see where it has been added to throughout the years. The Houses of Parliament sit majestically on the bank of the Thames and is usually swarming with politicos of all ilk; next to this is Big Ben, the London landmark that has featured in hundreds of films and TV shows, which explains why it has been voted London's most popular attraction. Westminster Cathedral is also nearby and the Neo-Byzantine building is a wonder to behold, although it isn't quite a patch on Buckingham Palace, which is a short walk from the church. The Queen's London residence is open for touring for part of the year, but if this is not available when you arrive you can see the daily Changing of the Guard ceremony.
Theatre aficionados will be in seventh heaven, as there are plenty of playhouses near the hotel to keep you entertained. The Apollo Victoria and Victoria Palace Theatre are home to London's mega musicals, whereas the White Bear and Royal Court Theatres offer more thought provoking fare and Pigalle offers a classy cabaret act. The Cadogan Hall and St John's Smith Square both offer live music and Pacha and Zander are some of London's trendiest spots to dance the night away.
Victoria also has some of the best transport links in London, from the station, housed in a dramatic Victorian building, you can catch the Gatwick Express train to the airport in 30 minutes as well as overground services to their areas of the UK. The Victoria, District and Circle lines can take you further afield to explore the rest of London and from Victoria coach station you can catch coaches to other areas of the UK and to Europe. The station is also a bus terminus, so there are dozens of bus routes you can take to many other areas of the city. It may take you a few minutes to work out which bus is the correct one, but once you have the hang of the system you'll be away!
The Luna and Simone Hotel is one of the better-maintained budget hotels in the Victoria area and offers fantastic value for money. Staying here will make sight seeing a breeze for any tourist and transport links mean that you won't have to struggle too far with your luggage. Rooms at the hotel don't have air conditioning, which may be an issue in the summer months (although London isn't exactly known for its relentless, stifling heat!) and there is no lift at the hotel, so disabled guests should request a ground floor room, but aside from these gripes, the hotel is a very good option for those visiting the city on a budget.