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Help me choose Southampton hotel please


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I am considering these 4 hotels for 1 night pre cruise.  Just looking for a nice place to stay, have dinner, see my ship in the AM and get to the pier easily.

 

Premier Inn West Quay, Holiday Inn, White Star Tavern and Leonardo Royal Hotel Southampton Grand Harbor. 

 

Premier Inn is the least expensive and the other 3 are within 20 euros or so of each other.

 

Are any of these significantly better or worse than others?  I know White Star doesn't have a lift but they said that I can get a room that's only about 1 flight up and they'll help with bags.

 

Thanks for your insight!

Edited by megr1125
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Room at the rear of Holiday Inn overlook ships berthed at City Cruise Terminal (RCI, NCL, Celebrity, Oceania, Azamara & smaller lines). Rooms at the front look down Southampton Water - to watch your ship sail in, just set your alarm for 04.30  :classic_wink:.

Quite a bland & IMHO ugly 1970's building, some recent renovations.

Very popular hotel with those cruising out of City Terminal.

 

King rooms in Leonardo Royal also have waterfront views (& balcony) - for just one or two nights those rooms are probably worth the premium. The hotel changed hands just a few months ago so bear that in mind if checking older reviews.

But it's altogether more up-market than H.I..

 

Premier Inn is known as Britain's most popular  budget hotel chain, though it has better-than-budget rooms, beds & fittings.

 

As well as Holiday Inn, Leonardo Royal & Premier Inn West Quay are also easily walkable to City terminal, and are very close by the city's Bargate which separates the city's few old-town sights from the main traditional shopping street (called Above Bar) and the big West Quay Mall. Those 3 hotels are within a five-minute walk of each-other.

Across the carpark from Premier Inn West Quay & Royal Leonardo is a new entertainment annexe of the West Quay Mall, featuring about 20 modern restaurants (mostly national & international chains) with inside & outside dining & looking across to a corner of the city wall.

Or along & near the waterfront at the bottom of old town are independently -run restaurants & historic pubs.

 

I've not been in White Star (harking back to White Star liners), but it's more "boutique" than "hotel".

Its on the opposite side of the city centre in Oxford Street, but still only 10 mins from the Bargate.

Oxford Street has its own selection of restaurants & pubs. "The Grapes" pub on Oxford Street is where three Titanic crew members got blind drunk on the eve of her maiden voyage & missed the sailing.

 

Precis of hotels & location map at

https://www.londontoolkit.com/travel/southampton_accommodation.htm

 

BTW, set your hotel search to £, not €

 

JB :classic_smile:

 

Re food at Premier Inn.

We've stayed at several (not in Southampton).

They're owned by a brewery / pub chain, and most have an attached pub. 

Typical pub food, we've found them acceptable-to-good and excellent value.

Breakfasts usually very good & again good value.

Neither hrhdhd nor we are "regular" diners at P/I.'s and I guess it's a matter of luck - good days / bad days

But I get the impression that the surroundings in P.I. West Quay's restaurant are more "canteen" than "pub". What say you, hrhdhd? 

But no matter - lots of choice close by.

 

 


 

 

Edited by John Bull
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Oops, sorry, I've been searching in GBP but typed Euros! It's been a day, I've been thinking and booking things in both currencies, and of course, some stuff at home in USD.  Perhaps I poured a little too much Gin into my Tonic. (and one of my clients may be a contributing factor to that beverage!  )

 

*blushes and hides because she knows better....*:classic_blush: mea culpa!  

 

White Star did sound interesting and historical....but I think I'll stick with one of the others....


Thanks JB and hrhdhd -  now I've got a lot more to think about.  And regarding food, I'm thinking I'll find a local pub, stumble in for a light dinner and another of the aforementioned G&Ts and reflect on what should be a fabulous several days in Dublin and London!

 

BTW, am I correct in thinking that QM2 often is at different terminals?  Or is she usually docked at one over another.  I never sleep much anyway and never on cruise day so even though it'll be November, and dark, chances are I'll be awake and watching!!

 

Edited by megr1125
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Actually I just checked the rates I booked versus today's rates.  I got a ridiculously low rate at the PI, that I didn't have to prepay, and that same room now is £35 MORE than I booked....SOOO for the awesomely low rate of £44 that I got, I THINK I can deal with the better than budget Premier Inn.

 

The more I save on hotels = more stuff I can buy on the ship...and, of course, more gin!

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6 minutes ago, megr1125 said:

 

 

BTW, am I correct in thinking that QM2 often is at different terminals?  Or is she usually docked at one over another.  I never sleep much anyway and never on cruise day so even though it'll be November, and dark, chances are I'll be awake and watching!!

 

 

 

QM2 mainly berths at Ocean Cruise Terminal (berth 46).

In decent weather it's walkable from any of those four hotels, or if you pour more gin than tonic it's about £6 - 7 by cab (get your hotel to call one for you)

But she sometimes berths at QE11 terminal (berth 38/39).

That's quite deep in the docks and on a docks road with little separation between walkers and heavy truck traffic. So even teetotalers should get a cab. £7 to £8

And very occasionally at Mayflower (105/6), also a short cab ride.

Bookmark this port schedule

 http://www.southamptonvts.co.uk/Live_Information/Shipping_Movements_and_Cruise_Ship_Schedule/Cruise_Ship_Schedule/

 

BTW, I don't think of White Star Rooms as "historic". Not in British terms, at least.

If you want quirky, historic & boutique consider Pig-in-the-Wall. It's built into the city wall behind Leonardo Royal, and through the adjacent WestGate is the Duke of Wellington pub. 

https://www.thepighotel.com/in-the-wall/

 

Another BTW, gin was always known in Britain as "mother's ruin", but now t's very much the "in" drink.

 

JB 🍸

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1 hour ago, John Bull said:

Neither hrhdhd nor we are "regular" diners at P/I.'s and I guess it's a matter of luck - good days / bad days

But I get the impression that the surroundings in P.I. West Quay's restaurant are more "canteen" than "pub". What say you, hrhdhd? 

But no matter - lots of choice close by.

 

I've had better pub food than what I was served at the P.I. The "restaurant" was also crowded, appeared to be short-staffed, and was out of several choices.

 

I bought the dinner/breakfast package because I didn't want to have to figure out where to find dinner, and it wasn't a bad value. But the hotel is across the street from a shopping center with several choices, so if I were to stay in the future, I'd go to one of those.

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I'll have way too much crap to haul, so gin or not, I'll be getting a taxi!!

 

Compulsive overpacker who never learned to take her own packing advice that was freely dispensed for 5 years when I managed a luggage store.🤣🤣

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45 minutes ago, geoherb said:

 

Is the Mayflower terminal walkable from the coach station?

 

Not really, esp with luggage. 

Over a mile, about 25 mins, half of it within the port.

Taxi rank at the coach station, about £6 to £7

 

JB :classic_smile:

Edited by John Bull
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On 9/6/2019 at 1:39 AM, megr1125 said:

Actually I just checked the rates I booked versus today's rates.  I got a ridiculously low rate at the PI, that I didn't have to prepay, and that same room now is £35 MORE than I booked....SOOO for the awesomely low rate of £44 that I got, I THINK I can deal with the better than budget Premier Inn.

 

The more I save on hotels = more stuff I can buy on the ship...and, of course, more gin!

 

We always stay at Premier Inn West Quay because it's convenient for the town. Across the road from it is a great shopping centre (mall), a cinema and lots of restaurants. You can get to the Old Town and walk the walls etc a short distance away and it's close to the bus and railway station. Can't beat it 

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This Texan has stayed at the Premier Inn twice after an easy walk from the National Express Bus Station.  The first time, I did eat there as well since I didn't know to expect and I was arriving near dark.  The second time, I ate over at the Mall.  It's a great location with another easy walk to where my Royal Caribbean ship docked.

 

After my first cruise, when Royal cancelled our excursion back to Heathrow via Windsor Castle, we ended up having to take National Express back at a later time.  My daughter and I ended up having breakfast at the Premier Inn and they were nice enough to watch our luggage while we shopped across the street.  Thought that was quite nice of them.

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  • 4 weeks later...

We just returned from our British Isles cruise.  We stayed at the Leonardo Southampton, and we were very unhappy with it.  It's going through a change of management, and it's worse than the old owners.  The heat/ac goes out every 2 hrs if you don't ask to have it stay on 24/7, the buffet is very skimpy, rooms are fairly shabby, and it feels like a budget hotel.

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Another vote for P.I. W.Q.

It was walkable to the pier, and for the us -- it was the main reason to book. Also, it was cheaper than H.I. and looked better.

Since we arrived on a Sunday afternoon, we booked the package of dinner cum b'fast. The dinner was OK, and it was convenient to eat on site. 

 

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I have stayed in most of these hotels in the Southampton area.

 

Premier Inns are fine, with really comfy beds and the breakfasts are great. But as restaurants they are pretty ropey affairs, many of which accommodate childrens play area in them. Says it all really.

 

The novotel not far from the train station is a decent shout.

 

The Jurys Inn in the city centre in the middle of the roundabout is really nice. Bt farther away, but only a short taxi ride to the cruise.

 

The Grand Harbour looks nice but is one I havent stayed in.

 

For decent value, the premier Inn cant be beaten though.

 

 

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4 hours ago, DarrenM said:

I have stayed in most of these hotels in the Southampton area.

 

Premier Inns are fine, with really comfy beds and the breakfasts are great. But as restaurants they are pretty ropey affairs, many of which accommodate childrens play area in them. Says it all really.

 

The novotel not far from the train station is a decent shout.

 

The Jurys Inn in the city centre in the middle of the roundabout is really nice. Bt farther away, but only a short taxi ride to the cruise.

 

The Grand Harbour looks nice but is one I havent stayed in.

 

For decent value, the premier Inn cant be beaten though.

 

 

 

The Grand Harbour is soooo many steps above the others mentioned but it also is much more expensive.

Well worth it from our experience.

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We've taken coach from Victoria in London to Southampton and walked to the Novotel with our luggage  and we're not young! The hotel room was quite large and very comfortable. Breakfast was much better than anticipated. We had a great view of the harbor from our room, and could see a few ships.  Join their guest "club" for an added 10% off. 

 

We spent two nights pre-cruise and found the location provided easy walking access to local pubs [Duke of Wellington], shopping and Tudor House. Yes, even a nice wine shop nearby. When we were checking out, the front desk called a cab for us - West Quay - more like a town car. We had already arranged   a unique post cruise tour & transfer to LHR with the same company, Discover the South.   

 

We are returning to the area in March for a wedding and plan to book the Novotel. DH will be renting a car once we check in - Alamo, National and Enterprise are located in the immediate area.

 

Darcy

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3 hours ago, WatchHill said:

 

 

We are returning to the area in March for a wedding and plan to book the Novotel. DH will be renting a car once we check in - Alamo, National and Enterprise are located in the immediate area.

 

Darcy

 

Add Hertz  & Europcar to that list, Darcy. :classic_smile:

But not the Hertz location at IKEA - unless you want a panel van :classic_wink:.

The only major player that's not handy is Avis -  they're only represented out at Southampton airport.

 

BTW Novotel is CC contributor Jocap's favourite Southampton hotel.

 

JB :classic_smile: 

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10 minutes ago, John Bull said:

 

 

BTW Novotel is CC contributor Jocap's favourite Southampton hotel.

 

JB :classic_smile: 

Yes, we're fond of the Novotel if we're coming by train, but if we're on a late train, arriving about 21.20 and just want a bed, we go next door to the main Ibis, which we've always found so clean and welcoming- and that bit cheaper than Novotel. Both cater for drivers, offering 15 day's parking, for an extra sum.

If we're driving and going from City terminal, we use Holiday Inn next door- parking included... drop off cases when the gates open, then go back for coffee.

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To Jocap and JB

 

We'll be flying from BOS, overnight, arriving very early at LHR, probably too tired to think "drive left" though DH did learn while living in Nairobi and Seychelles decades ago. He's driven multiple times in England and Wales, he's OK, I'm not.  We'll be escorting family and friend for the wedding at a golf club outside of Bournemouth, so coach will be the safest option to Southampton. Once we check into the Novotel, DH will head over to one of the companies owned by Enterprise - he has a corporate account and receives a substantial discount, so we'll stay with one of them. We'll be arriving a few days ahead of the festivities, so some touristy things will be on our agenda. Possibly a day in Portsmouth, walking tour of Winchester and drive through the Forest, stopping for cream tea in Lyndhurst.  I've already run the hotel rates by our fellow traveling wedding guests, and given the time of year, excellent prices. 

 

I'm looking at possible cruises to tack on after the wedding - we'll stay in Europe while everyone else can take coach back to LHR.  

 

Darcy

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2 hours ago, WatchHill said:

To Jocap and JB

 

We'll be flying from BOS, overnight, arriving very early at LHR, probably too tired to think "drive left" though DH did learn while living in Nairobi and Seychelles decades ago. He's driven multiple times in England and Wales, he's OK, I'm not.  We'll be escorting family and friend for the wedding at a golf club outside of Bournemouth, so coach will be the safest option to Southampton. Once we check into the Novotel, DH will head over to one of the companies owned by Enterprise - he has a corporate account and receives a substantial discount, so we'll stay with one of them. We'll be arriving a few days ahead of the festivities, so some touristy things will be on our agenda. Possibly a day in Portsmouth, walking tour of Winchester and drive through the Forest, stopping for cream tea in Lyndhurst.  I've already run the hotel rates by our fellow traveling wedding guests, and given the time of year, excellent prices. 

 

I'm looking at possible cruises to tack on after the wedding - we'll stay in Europe while everyone else can take coach back to LHR.  

 

Darcy

 

 Hi Darcy,

 

Sounds like a great plan.......

 

..........with the possible exception of Lyndhurst for cream tea, depending on time of the year & day-of-the-week - Lyndhurst is a notorious bottleneck in the summer months, caused by its one-way gyratory roads and a traffic-light junction of the High Street & Romsey Road.:classic_ohmy:

There are plenty of scenic ways to avoid Lyndhurst, even a way to enter it without a logjam, from Southampton (but only from the Southampton direction) and leave in any direction except Cadnam/ Romsey. If you know what day & time you're planning to visit Lyndhurst & the New Forest we can explain how to attack Lyndhurst and offer suggestions for scenic New Forest routes avoiding traffic grief.

 

Portsmouth is well worth a full day, centred on the Historic Dockyard/Gunwharf Quays and on Southsea seafront. 

Winchester is well worth half a day - parking is difficult, so best to use a park-and-ride parking lot outside the centre.

Both are pretty easy by train too.

 

JB :classic_smile:

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10 hours ago, John Bull said:

 

 Hi Darcy,

 

Sounds like a great plan.......

 

..........with the possible exception of Lyndhurst for cream tea, depending on time of the year & day-of-the-week - Lyndhurst is a notorious bottleneck in the summer months, caused by its one-way gyratory roads and a traffic-light junction of the High Street & Romsey Road.:classic_ohmy:

There are plenty of scenic ways to avoid Lyndhurst, even a way to enter it without a logjam, from Southampton (but only from the Southampton direction) and leave in any direction except Cadnam/ Romsey. If you know what day & time you're planning to visit Lyndhurst & the New Forest we can explain how to attack Lyndhurst and offer suggestions for scenic New Forest routes avoiding traffic grief.

 

Portsmouth is well worth a full day, centred on the Historic Dockyard/Gunwharf Quays and on Southsea seafront. 

Winchester is well worth half a day - parking is difficult, so best to use a park-and-ride parking lot outside the centre.

Both are pretty easy by train too.

 

JB :classic_smile:

 

Thank you JB

 

We've visited the Forest on every trip when in the area - a treasure so many tourists do not experience. Loved the quaint villages, wild animals and unique shops.  I recall the route our driver [Discover the South] took from Southampton to Lyndurst last year, avoiding traffic and giving us a few hours to meander through shops and stop for cream tea.  Since we'll be there in late March and the first week of April, I'm not anticipating major traffic issues, unless you count the standard traffic jams on the motorways closer to London. We'll also be heading to Poole for a pre-wedding dinner, love the seaside venues. 

 

We're thinking a week in the area, between wedding and site seeing, we'll be quite busy.

 

Since our travel friends/family haven't been to the area, and we have, I want to balance out the "must see" places against those DH and I have already done. Thus Winchester Cathedral interior, car park garage is near the round table site [address is still in the SAT NAV], none of us have done Portsmouth - so it's a full day on the agenda. We've done IOW overnight, so skipping that. I do need to remember to pay for parking wherever we stop. Don't want another notice from the Parking Eye! In Southampton, we plan to visit Tudor House , walk the wall and dine at Duke of Wellington - still have my frequent diner punch card. One of our friends is a shop-a-holic, so leaving her at the Arcade is an easy decision.

 

Again, thank you.

 

Darcy

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1 hour ago, WatchHill said:

 

Thank you JB

 

We've visited the Forest on every trip when in the area - a treasure so many tourists do not experience. Loved the quaint villages, wild animals and unique shops.  I recall the route our driver [Discover the South] took from Southampton to Lyndurst last year, avoiding traffic and giving us a few hours to meander through shops and stop for cream tea.  Since we'll be there in late March and the first week of April, I'm not anticipating major traffic issues, unless you count the standard traffic jams on the motorways closer to London. We'll also be heading to Poole for a pre-wedding dinner, love the seaside venues. 

 

We're thinking a week in the area, between wedding and site seeing, we'll be quite busy.

 

Since our travel friends/family haven't been to the area, and we have, I want to balance out the "must see" places against those DH and I have already done. Thus Winchester Cathedral interior, car park garage is near the round table site [address is still in the SAT NAV], none of us have done Portsmouth - so it's a full day on the agenda. We've done IOW overnight, so skipping that. I do need to remember to pay for parking wherever we stop. Don't want another notice from the Parking Eye! In Southampton, we plan to visit Tudor House , walk the wall and dine at Duke of Wellington - still have my frequent diner punch card. One of our friends is a shop-a-holic, so leaving her at the Arcade is an easy decision.

 

Again, thank you.

 

Darcy

 

Bear in mind that 10th - 13th April is the Easter weekend & will be busy - if the weather's fine & if you've not sailed over the horizon by then.

 

The round table hung in Winchester's Great Hall was carbon-dated to the 12th/13th century whereas King Arthur (if he existed) was in the 5th Century. But no need to tell your friends - don't let the truth get in the way of a good story :classic_wink:

 

In Winchester cathedral is a small statue of William Walker - it's worth knowing the back-story https://www.winchester-cathedral.org.uk/our-heritage/famous-people/william-walker-the-diver-who-saved-the-cathedral/

 

Yes, we have parking cameras as well as speed cameras, bus lane cameras, traffic light cameras, etc ad infinitum :classic_rolleyes:

 

Enjoy your time in my part of the world, and on your cruise :classic_smile:

 

JB :classic_smile:

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2 hours ago, John Bull said:

 

Bear in mind that 10th - 13th April is the Easter weekend & will be busy - if the weather's fine & if you've not sailed over the horizon by then.  We'll be flying  back in the States by the 10th, unless I come across a cruise. 

 

The round table hung in Winchester's Great Hall was carbon-dated to the 12th/13th century whereas King Arthur (if he existed) was in the 5th Century. But no need to tell your friends - don't let the truth get in the way of a good story :classic_wink: DH and I have been to Tintagel, Merlin's Cave, visited stone circles and mounds, etc., and I'm very good at selling tall tales to naive family - one actually believed my story of Plymouth Rock being  the actual landing site of the Pilgrims. 

 

In Winchester cathedral is a small statue of William Walker - it's worth knowing the back-story https://www.winchester-cathedral.org.uk/our-heritage/famous-people/william-walker-the-diver-who-saved-the-cathedral/

 

Yes, we have parking cameras as well as speed cameras, bus lane cameras, traffic light cameras, etc ad infinitum :classic_rolleyes: Got two at a Bournemouth Hotel - dinner ran longer than anticipated due to a few weddings, very slow dinner service,  and another time checking in took longer than planned, so got another ticket. Our friend was taking the rental car back to her flat where it could be parked without additional fees. Tickets weren't cheap - about 125GBP each! Once I explained the problem, the hotel took care of the tickets. 

 

Enjoy your time in my part of the world, and on your cruise :classic_smile: Thank you, again.....also plan to dine at the little cottage near the witch village in the Forest - wasn't that one of your accounts? So much to do and see. I cannot understand why so many Americans just do a 7 night cruise when they really should be spending at least that much time on land first....and again post cruise.

 

JB :classic_smile:

 

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