Wharf Rat

(Grateful Dead) – Crowne Plaza, Wharf Road, Battersea

I had been invited to a drinks reception at Brixton Brewery on Monday evening, followed by the ‘Trade Day’ of the Great British Beer Festival at Olympia on Tuesday morning.

I recognised that living in darkest Essex – as I do – that travelling home and back wasn’t going to be an option, so I chose to stay ‘up town’.

There were cheaper options available, but I like Crowne Plazas, so I booked their Battersea Hotel for the Monday night. I had a tortuous journey across a stifling hot London and fifteen minute walk from Clapham Junction station with my phone giving me directions from my pocket.

Check-in was ultra efficient (thanks trainee ‘Romy’), and as an IHG ‘club’ member I had been upgraded to a river view room.

My room (403) not only had a view of the river, but overlooked Battersea Heliport, a place I considered to be incredibly cool when I was a kid, and it’s still pretty cool to watch executive helicopters taking off from outside ones window.

The room itself is equally cool, with digital lighting controls, some aviation themed art, the aforementioned river view, and – and this was a first for me – a TV in the bathroom.

This was just as well, as I couldn’t get the main TV to work, there’s connectivity for most AV devices, but I simply couldn’t get it to work. I clearly hadn’t been on the appropriate training course

I asked at reception if they would look into it, as I went out for the evening, so either they couldn’t get it to work, or didn’t try.

The (free) Wi-fi is a reasonable 5mb/s both up and down, the bed was large and comfortable, the toiletries were E’Spa – Val’s favourite, but very pricey.

Breakfast was included in my room rate, and was a comprehensive buffet, bacon, eggs, sausages and so on. There was an option to order kippers, eggs benedict and so on, but the buffet was fine for me. After breakfast I sat outside for a while watching the helicopters come and go.

I’d be happy to stay at this hotel again in the future, but for the TV problems, this would be a glowing five star review.

Rating: ★★★★½

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