Guesthouse West in London's Notting Hill - Review

Their slogan 'Earn Money While You Sleep' sounds like a good idea doesn't it? But exactly what do they mean by "earn money while you sleep"?  Is it some kind of a points program or frequent sleeper rewards?

      

Well, I'm glad you asked. It's a unique concept a little akin to a timeshare. But with a difference. With a timeshare you don't own anything you pay your lump sum of money and in return get the use of a property. At Guesthouse West you legally own part of the building, you benefit from having a hotel room at your disposal and when you aren't using it, you get a financial benefit from the rental of that hotel room.

      

Guesthouse West's parent company Guest Invest is the only company in England using this financial model, which is the brainchild of property developer Johnny Sandelson. How it works is Investors legally purchase a room, on a 99 year lease. They are permitted to stay at the hotel for a maximum of 52 nights in a year and annually receive up to 7% return on their investment.

      

As with all good stories when the idea of Guesthouse West (the flagship property of Guesthouse Invest) was first announced there were many naysayers who said it would never work; no one would invest, it wouldn't pay returns etc, etc.  Of course the visionaries behind the concept didn't listen and when they opened Guesthouse West for sale in March of 2004 all of the 20 bedrooms on the property were sold out within 8 weeks! They have gone on to beat all of their revenue targets since that opening. They are now expanding into another property in London which is currently under renovation and is also selling very well.

      

That's all well and good you may be saying to yourself. But I don't own a piece of the property, nor am I looking to invest, so what does that have to do with me?

Well, I'm glad you asked. Originally built in Edwardian times as a family home, Guesthouse West is a charming boutique hotel in the heart of London's very hip Notting Hill. It is a great location with many of London's best known restaurants and some of the most famous shopping in the world.

      

All of the hotel rooms are en-suite, meaning they have an attached bathroom. (This is a big deal because most properties were built before indoor plumbing and there is a lot expense and work involved in supplying properties with the modern luxuries we all expect.) The property is intimate and has an upscale atmosphere to it.

      

There is an excellent cocktail bar that serves food, a private terrace - a great area to see and be seen, where you can enjoy their traditional pub food, sip on a cocktail or try my favorite coffee in London (their Cafe Mocha).  During the summer people will line up 2 3 hours to eat on their terrace. It is also a great spot to be in August during the Notting Hill Carnival which passes right by the front door.

      

The rooms themselves are simple yet elegantly designed with all the modern state-of-the-art luxuries like a flat screened TV, DVD and CD library, air conditioning, comfy beds, Irish linens, and toiletries by Molton Brown. My favorite feature is their broadband access FREE WIRELESS! Ah, Heaven! Nothing perturbed me more on my trip than expensive hotel rooms which continued to gauge their guests with expense after expense. It was such a relief to be somewhere that actually included wireless service like an upscale amenity, not a service I had to pay through the nose for. I'd come back to Guesthouse West just because of that feature.

      

There were so many things I liked about this hotel. It's comfortable and has a real home atmosphere to it. The staff is very friendly, knowledgeable and professional; they were very quick to attend to my requests and went out of their way to offer excellent service. They have a great complimentary continental breakfast - you really must try their delish Mocha.

      

This is a very popular hotel for corporate, business and media executives, and European women who come over the weekend to shop in the famous Notting Hill boutique stores. Many of their clients are return visitors, people who have been to the highly visited touristy hotels and want more of a home atmosphere. By the time they have been in the hotel a day or so everyone knows them and their preferences and that level of intimate service brings folks back again and again.

      

I was very happy with my experiences and would recommend a stay at Guesthouse West to a friend. Oh and when you visit make sure to say hello to Peter the GM from me.

      

If you want to read more in depth about my visit to Guesthouse West click on my London Postcards Day 2 and Day 3 

Guesthouse West
163-165 Westbourne Grove
Notting Hill London W11 2RS
+44 (0) 20 7792 9800
www.guesthousewest.com

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