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Park Plaza County Hall
Avg. Customer Review (4.8 Palms): 5.0 Palms
Number of Reviews: 2

Review Type: Hotel
1 Addington Street, London, SE1 7RY
Dedicated GF: No
Phone: +44 (0) 20 7021
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2 reviews available

Wonderful hotel in London which understands gluten free need,

Reviewer: from South Riding, VA - See all reviews by Gftraveler

5.0 Palms
5.0 Palms
This is, in my opinion, the perfect place to stay, if you're traveling as a family in London. And it's a great choice if anyone in your family happens to be gluten free. It is a new hotel, modern and with all the convenient amenities we needed. It's also in a safe area and very convenient. Located right next to Waterloo train station and Underground station, you are no more than a few tube stops from most of London's main sights and attractions. The hotel overlooks Waterloo station on one side (where our room was located) and has views of Parliament and Big Ben on the other. It is just a couple blocks from the Thames River, and you can cross Westminster Bridge (open to pedestrians), and you are in the heart of Westminster with Parliament, Big Ben, and Westminster Abbey right there. The London Eye is a few blocks away, and even sights like St. Paul's Cathedral are only a 25 minute walk -- or a short tube ride.

The main reason for booking this hotel, however, was that it offered junior suites to accommodate four people (many hotels in London only accommodate two people per room) and kitchenette for any light meal preparation we might need to do. Our junior suite comprised a bedroom area right as you walked in, plenty of drawer and closet space, a vanity table with mirror, a beautiful bathroom with shower, tub, toilet, and sink, and then a sitting area with a pull-out sofa for our kids, more shelf and cupboard space, and a desk. There was a TV in each room. Between the two rooms and across from the bathroom was the little "kitchenette" area with small (very small) refrigerator, mini bar, sink, microwave, and basic barware and dinnerware. Our thinking had been that we might need to prepare some gluten free breakfast items in the room, if there weren't many options at the hotel. But it turned out we didn't need to do this at all (or even make a trip to the grocery store at all), which I'll get to in just a minute....

We arrived late on a Saturday night, on a direct flight from the DC area. I'd had our travel agent (Lesley Hayden from Travel Leaders (I'd highly recommend her!) mention our gluten free needs when booking the hotel. We had been assured the handle this request all the time and would have plenty of options at breakfast, which was included each morning, as part of our package. Upon arriving in our room after check-in, we found some nice gluten free treats (snacks I wasn't familiar with (various packaged sweets made in the UK) waiting for us, along with a welcome note. There were also two large glass bottles of water (one still, one sparkling) and a selection of juice boxes for the kids. This was a very welcome sight for hungry travelers -- and such a nice, unexpected touch.

Breakfast the next morning was impressive as well. A Continental Breakfast buffet was included with our room, but there was the option of upgrading to a full English Breakfast buffet as well. The dining room was nice -- located on the main level in a room with plenty of windows and natural light. The place was packed, even though we were dining on the late side. The service, as is customary in England, was superb. The staff was so polite, friendly, and accommodating. The hostess that seated us also walked us through the gluten free options, both at the buffet -- and those that were available from the kitchen, upon request (still included without an extra charge). On the buffet, the gluten free options included fruit, yogurt, cheeses, some cold cuts, and juices. She brought us a sampling of other gluten free items from the kitchen: cereal with dried raspberries (quite good, and not too sweet), gluten free toast (there was a selection of jams, as well as butter and individually packed Nutella spead at the buffet), cranberry orange muffins (delicious), and a big, fluffy roll that we swore couldn't be gluten free (we asked, and one of our servers confirmed that it was). It, too, was quite good. From the full English Breakfast buffet (only adults pay extra for this upgrade -- for children, it's free), there were scrambled eggs, various meats, and baked tomatoes that were gluten free. We were told that we could also request eggs prepared any way (and any other gluten free hot items) from the kitchen, if we were concerned about cross-contamination at the buffet.

Coffee, tea, and gluten free hot cocoa are also served. We typically ate a big breakfast here each morning, so that we could just snack on gluten free bars (brought from home) and fruit while sightseeing during the day. This gave us more time for the sights -- and then we always made reservations at a gluten-free friendly restaurant for dinner. Some days we opted for high tea in the afternoon, which is a meal in itself.

I cannot recommend this hotel highly enough. Even the price was good, by London standards -- especially given the newness of the property, its convenient location, safe area, accommodations for four, kitchenette, and inclusion of breakfast and all gratuities.

Park Plaza County Hall

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Gluten-free friendly restaurant in London hotel,

Reviewer: from South Riding, VA - See all reviews by Gftraveler

4.5 Palms
4.5 Palms
This is the hotel we were staying at, and we hadn't planned to eat dinner here, just because it isn't necessarily known for their gluten free offerings -- and we'd already booked or planned dinners at other restaurants throughout London during our stay. But our Christmas Eve dinner plans fell through, and we remembered how the hotel had mentioned that they had gluten free pasta, should we choose to have lunch or dinner there during our stay. Given what a great job they'd done taking care of us each morning for breakfast, we were confident we could get a nice, safe meal here for dinner.

The restaurant is very nice and open -- with floor to ceiling windows and a partly open kitchen. It's the same place we dined each morning for breakfast. It's just off the lobby -- up a flight of stairs and situated in the middle of the two sides of the hotel, viewable from the hallways above. The regular menu and Festive Christmas Menu looked amazing. My husband and I chose to order a fixed price 3-course dinner from the Festive Menu. Our sons wanted pasta and ended up ordering custom dishes, one with chicken on top of spaghetti pasta (not GF) and the other with prawns and broccoli on top of the gluten free penne with olive oil and garlic sauce. The chef happily honored our requests and everything was done to our liking. There were plenty of meat and fish dishes on the menu as well, and since our server said they handle gluten free diners each day, they clearly know how to prepare safe and wonderful meals. Even though they don't have a printed Gluten Free Menu, they seem to be easily able to adapt most items from the main menu, if they aren't already gluten free. All in all, this is a nice place to dine, whether you're staying at the hotel or not. I'd just recommend calling ahead to talk with a manager, and if you desire gluten free pasta, just make sure they have it available that day.

Park Plaza County Hall

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Businesses marked with a Dedicated Gluten Free icon are DEDICATED GLUTEN FREE ESTABLISHMENTS.