Holiday Inn London Heathrow (M4 J4): Accessible Double Room Review
It's been a long time coming, but welcome everyone to the first hotel review of 2019! In this post, I'll be reviewing a Double Accessible Room at Holiday Inn London Heathrow M4 J4, and I'd like to thank Sarah at LGH for inviting me to review this room for you all.
Holiday Inn London Heathrow M4 J4 is a 4-star hotel located in a very strategic location as far as hotels in the vicinity of Heathrow Airport go. The hotel is not only within seconds of the M4 and M25 making it incredibly easy to drive to, but it's also well served by Heathrow's Hotel Hoppa service to both Terminal 5, and Heathrow central for Terminals 2 and 3. The hotel recently went through a refurbishment, with the addition of the open lobby concept, of which I've been informed all Holiday Inn locations will have by 2020. This hotel has all the facilities you'd expect for a hotel that serves a busy airport, for example, meeting rooms and a gym. Unfortunately, I couldn't use the gym on this visit, but it's nice to know for future reference that it's there.
The open lobby concept is something I absolutely love about this hotel, it makes for such a welcoming space, unlike other hotels where more enclosed areas can feel cluttered, especially as the design allows for plenty of natural light to come through into the hotel. The openness of the space also means that despite the hotel being busy, it was still easy to move around without the hotel feeling crowded, especially in the bar area which is adjacent to the guest services and reception area.
The room we stayed in for this review was a double accessible room, and I have to say it honestly felt more like a suite than a standard hotel room! Immediately as you enter the room, you notice just how spacious it is. The room had a separate living/dressing area which included a sofa-bed, meaning you can have 3 people to a room! The sofa-bed being in a different room to the double bed was also welcoming, as it means that if you're travelling with a friend or carer, you can both have privacy. This is something very welcoming as you often don't find this in standard accessible rooms.
The really interesting thing about this room that I wasn't expecting, however, was in the bathroom. There was an actual bath! This is the first time I've stayed in a room tagged as fully accessible that has had a bath, so it was a nice touch. However, I know some people would prefer a roll in shower, and with how big the bathroom is, it would have been even more welcome if there was the choice of roll in shower or bath, especially as not all those with disabilities can use baths. I did a poll on Instagram to see what some of you thought of this, and whilst 67% of those who responded loved the idea of a bath in an accessible room, 33% didn't. The sink was also easy to get my wheelchair under which I loved, and was a good height too, as some hotels either leave the sinks too low to get a wheelchair under or too high for a wheelchair user to use.
The room we were in was nearest to the lift lobby, but you wouldn't think you were that close, as there was never any noise heard from outside of the room. This was extremely welcome, especially as I recently seem to have become a light sleeper!
The beauty of this Holiday Inn had the open lobby concept, is that they not only have a more formal main restaurant in the rear of the hotel called Seasons which offers a buffet menu as well as an à la carte menu which can also be ordered to your room. Some of the options on the menu can be ordered to room 24/7, whilst others can only be ordered during certain times. The second dining option is Terminal 6, which is part of the open lobby experience and offers less formal dine, work, socialise, and chill multi-use areas.
For dinner, we chose to have the à la carte menu in the Seasons restaurant. The food was well presented, and tasted just as good as it looked! The buffet, unfortunately, didn't look as appetising, but at £19.99 per person, offers a reasonably priced meal for what it is. We also chose to have breakfast in the restaurant as opposed to ordering room service, and the breakfast options were reasonable, but I would've liked to see a selection of cheeses with regards to the continental breakfast choices. The drinks choices for both dinner and breakfast, however, were very good!
The hotel also offers Starbucks coffee in its open lobby bar area.
Overall, I was impressed by Holiday Inn London Heathrow (M4 J4). The fact that the room felt more like a suite, was easy to manoeuvre around in a wheelchair and had doors in which a wheelchair could easily get through, plus the thoughtful layout of the public areas around the hotel, has meant that this Holiday Inn location has given me a positive lasting impression. The open lobby concept is one that I'm glad will be at every Holiday Inn location soon, as it's a concept I really love and in my opinion, it helps with making the customer experience a much more positive one.