7 points-friendly London hotels that sleep 4
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Finding rooms that can legitimately fit your whole family in London is a challenge. Those sort of rooms are not common and are usually notoriously expensive.
Once your search for lodging turns to “suites” and “interconnecting rooms”, your rates can quickly double or triple.
Programme: Marriott Bonvoy
Family rooms: Category 8 property with rooms cost 70,000 points off-peak, 85,000 standard and 100,000 peak plus £150 for a family room.
Having lived in London for many years with kids, my usual tip for visitors to London is to first decide where you want to be and then expand your search from there. London Marriott Hotel County Hall is where I put my friends and family up when they come to visit. South Bank is my go-to location recommendation for families visiting London.
The hotel’s location is inside London’s former City Hall.
The hotel has spacious rooms that sleep four. A bonus perk for families is that the hotel offers babysitting services. The top two floors of County Hall house a gym and the largest hotel indoor swimming pool in London. The hotel bar boasts a gin list of more than 100 types and offers afternoon tea (so book that babysitter).
When you stay here, London Dungeon, the London Aquarium, London Eye and Big Ben are on your doorstep plus Covent Garden and the West End are just across the bridge.
The South Bank refers to the walkway, shops and attractions on the south side of the River Thames along the stretch in front of the London Eye. The closest station is Waterloo, where you can board a train to places outside London like Windsor and Bath, or jump on the Jubilee line up to Bond Street for shopping.
The M-Club executive lounge (free for Bonvoy Platinum Elites and above) normally has complimentary adult drinks and canapes from 5:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m.
Programme: Radisson Rewards
Family rooms: 87,500 points per night
Radisson Rewards truly is one of the best hotel loyalty programmes for families in London, as you can book family rooms for a reasonable number of points without a cash co-pay. Children at the Park Plaza Westminster Bridge receive a “rucksack” of goodies at check-in and families of up to four can stay in the studio rooms with one bed and one sleeper sofa for 87,500 points per night.
If you’re lucky, you may score a view of Big Ben or the London Eye from your room. With Radisson Rewards, be sure you include the accurate number of adults and children in the search box to trigger the family awards in the results.
Programme: Marriott Bonvoy
Family rooms: Category 6 property with rooms that cost 40,000 points off-peak, 50,000 standard and 60,000 peak plus £60.
Only a few Marriott properties in London allow four people in one room without a substantial cash upgrade. While the higher-end London properties get most of the attention, families with Marriott points can have an enjoyable stay in Marble Arch.
At the London Marriott Marble Arch, as few as 40,000 points plus about £80 per night can get you a 291-square-foot room with two double beds that permit four people. The room has a 50-inch TV and coffee maker, plus a bathroom with a shower, bath and USB docks. While the hotel was built in 1972 (the exterior and lobby show it), the rooms were renovated in 2017. There’s a gym on-site with a sauna and a heated indoor pool.
Bonvoy Platinum Elite members, take note — the hotel has an executive lounge offering breakfast and snacks throughout the day, so your kids can grab a free bite whenever they’d like.
The location is great for shopping on Oxford Street, getting to and from Heathrow via Paddington and hitting the major London attractions with the speedy Central line on your doorstep. Bring the kids down to Speaker’s Corner, on the Marble Arch corner of Hyde Park on a Sunday for a lesson in free speech. Should you wish to rent a car, there is an Avis office inside the hotel.
Programme: Hilton Honors
Family rooms: Points required vary per room type and season though you can expect family rooms starting from around 95,000 points per night.
Hilton Paddington is inside Paddington station, making it a breeze to access from the Heathrow Express. It can be a good base for day trips to Cambridge, Oxford and the Cotswolds, too.
The 1854 hotel underwent a renovation in 2015 and created the GWR Tower Wing with renovated rooms and access to the executive lounge.
At this property, the family rooms are considered a premium award and won’t be cheap, but do exist. A family superior room with two queen beds clocks in at 99,000 to 107,000 points on our test dates for a 377-square-foot room. Families can upgrade to a queen suite for additional points (152,000 points per night in our tests) with a king-sized bed for the adults and separate living area with a pull-out double sofa for the kids. The queen suite also comes with access to the executive lounge.
The executive lounge (free with Hilton Diamond Status or a GWR Tower Room) overlooks Paddington Station and hosts breakfast, sandwiches and pastries around lunchtime and coffee and soft drinks all day long.
Kids 5 years and younger eat free when accompanied by an adult. Tie-ins to Paddington Bear are prevalent — a Paddington colouring book at check-in and the concierge-recommended Paddington Bear Walking tour that starts daily at 10:30 a.m. from inside the station. The tour will resume in 2021.
Programme: IHG Rewards Club
Family rooms: From 22,500 points.
Holiday Inn has several locations in London, including a posh one in Mayfair and the three-star Holiday Inn Express near Old Street station that is the perfect location for a visit to London with pre-teens or teens. Located on the edge of trendy Shoreditch and near Spitalfields Market, Brick Lane and the Columbia Road Flower Market, you can see another side of London other than the traditional West End tourist feel for just 22,500 IHG points per night for a room with a double bed and double pull-out sofa.
It’s nothing fancy, but it’s great value for very few points in an otherwise expensive city.
Rooms here include breakfast and children under 12 eat for free throughout the day. Families will love that the room comes with a mobile loaded with free data to save on international roaming if calling home is abroad.
Programme: IHG Rewards Club
Family rooms: From 27,500 points.
Once the gritty underbelly of London, the area surrounding King’s Cross Station has seen a £3 billion revitalisation in recent years and now hosts Google HQ, boutique shopping, an art school, luxury flats and some of London’s best restaurants.
Read more: 8 ways to spend a rainy day in London
For 35,000 IHG Rewards Club points per night, your family can cosy up in two double beds in a 140-square-foot room that sleeps four. Situated near the Charles Dickens Museum and the Postal Museum, there is plenty to do in the King’s Cross/Farrington area. It’s a 10- to 15-minute walk to the Tube and there is a bus stop right outside to head into central London to see all the top sights.
Programme: Marriott Bonvoy
Family rooms: Category 7 property with rooms that cost 50,000 points off-peak, 60,000 standard and 70,000 peak plus £150 for a deluxe room with two double beds.
If it’s Westminster Abbey, Buckingham Palace and the Royal Parks you’re seeking, you are in luck with St. Ermin’s Hotel, Autograph Collection that will allow you to fit your family of four in its 240-square-foot deluxe room with two double beds. For a bit more of a cash co-pay you can stay in the 400-square-foot junior suite with a king bed with a separate living room with a fold-out sofa or rollaway bed.
At this hotel, school-aged children are greeted with an activity pack to discover clues around the hotel and guests rave about the staff and old-world charm of the property. You will certainly know you’re in London by the restored grade II-listed Victorian building and St James Park and Westminster Abbey around the corner. The gym is small but functional and the third floor hosts a bee terrace with honey served at breakfast each morning.
If you hold Bonvoy Platinum Elite status, the full breakfast buffet is free for two guests. The hotel reopens, following a COVID-19 shutdown, on 6 October.
While some of these points hotels aren’t all that much to look at from the outside, being able to fit your family of four into a hotel room with a points redemption in London make them worth consideration. Added features, such as complimentary meals and children’s activities, means that kids can stay involved and budgets can stay intact.
Above all, staying near what you want to experience in London can really streamline the logistics of your trip. If you are looking for a line-up of somewhat more posh family-friendly lodging options in London, here’s that rundown for your planning pleasure.
Featured photo by by JordiAguil/Twenty20.
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