Live outside London but spend the majority of your working days in the capital? Wish you had a home away from home in the heart of the city – somewhere to unwind in the evening, catch up on emails over breakfast in the morning, and take advantage of guest amenities like a gym, spa, and restaurant?
If you answered “yes” to those questions, 4-star serviced apartments in central London are the perfect solution. Read on to learn about the advantages of serviced apartments, what to expect from them, and how to find the right option for you.
Serviced Apartments: The What And Why?
Over the past decade or so, the term “serviced apartment” has been used much more frequently. But what exactly does it mean? What can you expect if you choose to stay in one?
As with any type of accommodation, the specific facilities will naturally vary based on a range of factors, such as price and location. But, generally speaking, all serviced apartments should offer similar amenities to a hotel, with the added benefit of more space, privacy, and convenience – in other words, the comforts you miss most when you’re away from home. As a minimum, you should expect a serviced apartment to include:
- A well-equipped kitchen, often including a washing machine
- A separate bedroom (or bedrooms), or, in the case of studio apartments, a designated sleeping area
- A living area, offering space to work, eat and unwind on the sofa
- A bathroom
- A TV and free Wi-Fi
- A regular housekeeping service (e.g. once a week, or more frequently)
In addition to this, serviced apartments should include all utility bills within the standard room rate. There shouldn’t be any surprises in terms of cost; everything should be simple and transparent.
Given the range of amenities on offer, it should be clear why serviced apartments are such a popular choice for people who spend much of their working week in London, yet don’t live full-time in the capital. Balanced against the costs of commuting – not to mention the time and disruption of travelling to and from the city several times a week – they often make sound financial sense, as well as being extremely convenient.
Your Guide To 4* Serviced Apartments In Central London
You know the basics. But what about the specifics? Why exactly should you consider a 4-star serviced apartment in central London?
1. What you should expect from a 4-star serviced apartment
Any serviced apartment in London offers a place for you to unwind after a busy working day. So why opt for a 4-star version? What separates London’s premium serviced apartments from the budget end of the market?
Again, facilities and service levels will be different from one apartment to another. But to give you a clearer idea of what you can expect from a 4-star serviced apartment, here’s a look at some of the finer touches on offer at Dolphin House, our luxurious apartments in Pimlico – a rare haven of tranquillity in the busy heart of central London:
- Comfort: Our king-size or twin beds are fitted with sumptuous Hypnos pocket-sprung mattresses and Egyptian cotton percale bed linen, all-but guaranteeing a comfortable night’s sleep. In the bathroom, you’ll find 600-gram cotton towels.
- Convenience: Simply put, we aim to offer everything you need to make the best of your time away from home. All our serviced apartments include an iron and ironing board, a hairdryer, stylish built-in wardrobes, and fully stocked kitchens including a dining table and chairs, a microwave, kettle, refrigerator, crockery, glassware, and utensils. Washing machines and electric hobs/ovens are offered subject to availability. Plus all our rooms boast free fast Wi-Fi.
- Relaxation: Chill out or catch up on your work in the lounge area, which includes a flat-screen Freeview TV, a desk and drawers.
- Superb amenities: Also on offer at Dolphin House is the stylish yet informal Bar & Grill restaurant, and our luxury spa inspired by the essence of Morocco.
2. Serviced apartments benefits
Of course, serviced apartments are far from the only option available to people who regularly have to spend time in the capital. There are hundreds of hotels in and around central London, not to mention a growing number of independent apartments offered through sites like Airbnb. Furthermore, many landlords are willing to offer short-term lets on their properties. So why choose a serviced apartment?
While we’re admittedly a little biased in this respect, we truly believe that serviced apartments are the smart choice. Let’s take a look at some of the benefits they offer:
- Space: Serviced apartments are generally more spacious than hotels, giving you more room to work, cook, and switch off at the end of the day. In fact, a typical one-bedroom serviced apartment is about twice the size of an average hotel room.
- Value for money: Not only are there no hidden extras like minibars and room service but serviced apartments are typically 20% cheaper than equivalent hotel rooms.
- Facilities: As we’ve already discussed, serviced apartments offer cooking and washing facilities, which makes a real difference when you’re staying for several nights (or longer). Eating out can be a treat, but sometimes you crave the comfort of a home-cooked meal.
- Privacy: Anyone who’s spent any length of time staying in hotels knows that the constant interruptions can get a little frustrating. In a serviced apartment, you’re generally left to your own devices – just like you would be at home – but you’ll still get the benefit of a regular housekeeping service.
3. Tips for staying in a serviced apartment
The whole point of choosing a serviced apartment is to enjoy the comfort and convenience of a home away from home. So you’ll want to put a little thought into your stay to ensure you get the most out of it:
- Pack as light as possible: Remember you don’t need to bring your entire wardrobe with you. Pack the basics and make use of the onsite laundry facility.
- Take advantage of the amenities: From gyms and swimming pools to spas and restaurants, serviced apartments often boast fantastic amenities – so take the time to enjoy them.
- Give your apartment some personality: If you’re planning a longer-term stay, make sure you bring a few personal touches. Pictures of loved ones; easily portable hobbies like a jigsaw or a stamp collection; plenty of reading material. Because you’re not commuting to and from London every day, you’ve bought yourself plenty of free time, so make sure you fill it with things you enjoy.
- Explore the local area: One of the joys of longer-term stays is that you can really get to grips with local living. We’re more than happy to give you our expert advice on what to see and do (and where to eat) during your time in Pimlico.
4. Finding serviced apartments in London
Whether you’re planning to stay for just a few days or several weeks, why compromise? Here’s our guidance on choosing the best serviced apartments in London:
- Location is everything: There’s little benefit to choosing a serviced apartment if you’re going to have to spend an hour or more on the Underground every day to get where you need to be. You need a serviced apartment in central London with superb access to public transport. At Dolphin House, Pimlico station can be reached in five minutes on foot, while Victoria is less than a mile away.
- Somewhere you can call home: Central London may be convenient, but it’s rarely relaxing. This is why we’re delighted to be based in leafy Pimlico, characterised by quiet streets lined with grand 19th-century homes. But if you do fancy something a little more lively, you’ll also find plenty of chic restaurants and grand old pubs, some of which offer splendid views over the River Thames.
- All the mod cons: Again, why choose a serviced apartment if it lacks the essential touches to make it a true pied-à-terre? Scrutinise the services, facilities, and amenities on offer so you know what to expect.
Serviced apartments boast all the creature comforts you miss when you’re away from home. They’re convenient, spacious and offer great value for money. And, if you opt for a 4-star serviced apartment, you can enjoy plenty of luxurious extras too.
Ready to book your stay at Dolphin House? Check out our range of apartments and prices.