Sunday, 9 October 2016

A London staycation with a view at Novotel Blackfriars

To live in London is both a privilege and a pleasure.

But even as a Londoner (yeah, it's been all of nine months and I'm calling myself a Londoner now), to spend a night in a hotel in the capital is an extremely exciting treat.

And that, dear friends, is exactly what I did on a random Thursday not too long ago.
On a summery early autumn evening, I walked through this beautiful city from my work in Victoria to the Novotel in Blackfriars.

If you're a tourist coming to London, it might seem like a slightly odd location, but actually I reckon it would be nice to be out of the hustle and bustle of Soho/Covent Garden. You're right by the river and the hotel has the most fantastic view of the Shard.
Inside the rather futuristic but stylish lobby, I was swiftly checked-in and up I headed to my room on the 10th floor.

Come on in...
The room was clean, modern and minimalist, much like the lobby, although I couldn't help but feel slight airport lounge vibes. I accept that that might sound a bit weird, but it was just the impression I got. The style wasn't the homeliest, I suppose, but that's just the look they're going for.
For a basic room, it was spacious and well-equipped.

There were tea- and coffee-making facilities (only English Breakfast and Earl Grey though), a fridge, hair-dryer and ironing board, but unfortunately there wasn't any bottled water provided. Have I become a real diva? Is it outrageous to expect bottled water in a hotel room? I happily drank tap water anyway...

I really liked the sofa in the room, although I felt it could've done with a cushion - luckily there was a spare pillow so I'll let them off.

Sitting there, peering out at this view, felt pretty darn cool.
In the bathroom, basic toiletries were provided as well as towels that were pleasingly big, if a little on the tatty side.
The wall of the shower was really cool - whilst it looks like your classic floor-to-ceiling window, at the tap of a button it turns opaque. I have no idea how that works but I was impressed.

Before settling in for the night, I popped down to the hotel pool for a dip (there's also a gym, but one thing at a time eh?).
It's not huge so wouldn't be much fun if very busy, but luckily for me there were only a couple of other swimmers there.

With an under-the-sea scene projected onto the wall, I really enjoyed the calming vibe. There's a big sauna, which I liked, and a jacuzzi that flows into the pool (and is thus the same temperature).

Feeling like I'd earned it (I hadn't), I headed back to my room and ordered a take-away from Uber Eats - there is of course room service at the hotel, but I was in the mood for something specific, and you just can't fight those cravings, can you?
With an unnecessary amount of food for one person (#noregrets), I settled in for a night in front of the TV in my PJs.

God, I love me-time.

When I eventually went to bed, I decided to leave the curtain open, as it's not every day you get to fall asleep to a view of the Shard, is it..?
Possibly Almost definitely because I'd left the curtain open, I woke unusually early. But boy, am I glad I did.
Well good morning, London.

I watched the sun rise whilst snuggled up in my lovely crisp bedlinen.
And before I new it, my breakfast had arrived!

Whilst there is, of course, a breakfast buffet, you can get your brekkie delivered for no extra cost, and I for one cannot resist the allure of breakfast in bed.
The menu isn't extensive, but it's good.

My breakfast was really very lovely actually.
I had fruit salad which was pleasingly full of fresh, interesting fruit (don't you hate it when a fruit salad is like 75% apple chunks?), if a tad cold. And alongside my fruit salad I had a big bowl of muesli with yoghurt, honey and stewed prunes. Oh, and a big pot of tea, of course.

And then, much to my disappointment, it was time to go to work (after an incredibly quick check-out.)

I left the hotel feeling refreshed and revived and had had a wonderful stay. I think perhaps, spending a night by yourself, somewhere nice, may do wonders for the soul. Note to self: must do more solo staycations.

I was a guest at Novotel London Blackfriars but all opinions are my own and unbiased.

1 comment

  1. Only just come across your blog, and I'm hooked! I really like the balance between pics and text you've got going on, and I must admit I've laughed a couple of times while reading. Feeling inspired to start my own, can only hope it would be half as good!


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