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Reality Check




THE HOTEL: The five-star Jumeirah Carlton Tower is one of two hotels in London for the Dubai-based hospitality group – the Jumeirah Lowndes Hotel is just round the corner. It has 216 rooms and suites and is located a short walk from Knightsbridge tube station. THE CHECK-IN: There was no queue in the small reception area – set to the side of the lobby area and busy Chinoiserie bar – and the paperwork was done in a flash. THE ROOM: The 47m2 executive suites (pictured) have recently been refurbished and this one was in mint condition. Upholstery was smart, sleek and modern in neutral and dark tones with a dash of purple, as were the fixtures and fittings, which made for an overall masculine feel. The lounge area featured a sofa, flatscreen TV, minibar, safe, Nespresso machine, iPod dock and a small selection of books. The glass dining table, coffee table and desk were a nice touch which, together with large wall mirrors, helped lighten the room. Off the bedroom was a walk-in closet and the bathroom with separate bath and a great walk-in shower. THE BUSINESS: There was free wifi in my room, plus a first-floor business centre. Meetings facilities include nine flexible rooms with maximum capacity of 670.

THE FACILITIES: The renowned Rib Room specialises in British cuisine and was recently awarded three AA Rosettes. Roger Moore was among other diners in the restaurant as I tucked into an excellent Aberdeen Angus rump. There's an adjacent cocktail bar, private dining room and cigar terrace. The laid-back Chinoiserie bar and lounge forms part of the lobby area, plus there's the small, trendy Gilt cocktail bar. The ninth-floor Club Room serves healthy snacks, meals and drinks throughout the day to accompany great views across the capital, and is part of the impressive Peak Health Club & Spa. It comprises a 20m pool,

gym, sauna, steam and treatment rooms, and state-of-the-art golf simulator. THE VERDICT: This is a first-class business hotel conveniently located in Knightsbridge, with some luxury leisure facilities to boot – not to mention superb dining. THE DETAILS: Jumeirah Carlton Tower, Cadogan Place, London, SW1X 9PY. Room rates start from £220 per night for a superior room. Executive suites are from £990 a night. Both rates are room only, excluding VAT and discretionary service charge. Tel: 020 7235 1234; see ANDY HOSKINS


THE HOTEL: The W Singapore opened in September and is situated on the island of Sentosa, just a short taxi ride from the hustle and bustle of Singapore’s city centre and financial districts. The hotel has 240 rooms with room categories ranging from 'Wonderful' to 'Extreme WOW' suite. THE CHECK-IN: I was met by the receptionist and quickly checked-in. I was given the code to access wifi, before being pointed in the direction of the lift. Frustratingly I wasn't told that I needed to wave my room key in front of a scanner to access the floors, so spent a few moments aimlessly pressing buttons. THE ROOM: I was staying in one of the hotels 'Wonderful' rooms which was bright and spacious. It came with a flatscreen TV, DVD player and an iPod docking station. The bathroom was also bright and spacious, with separate bath and rainforest shower. There was an in-room safe, minibar and a range of goodies in the ‘munchies’ box. I couldn't work out how to turn down the volume of my TV in the bathroom and had to ring down to reception. It was a minor inconvenience but a detail that might have been explained when I checked-in. THE BUSINESS: The hotel has nearly 15,000 square feet of meetings space, with the

largest space accommodating up to 700 delegates theatre-style. There were four further interconnecting meeting rooms, plus an additional 'strategy room' which had capacity for 16 people. THE FACILITIES: The hotel is very much a resort-style property with two restaurants: The Kitchen Table, with live cooking stations providing an array of international flavours; and SKIRT where one can indulge in a wide choice of meats and fish cooked at the grill. The Away spa has a sauna, steam room and vitality pool with body jets, and there are numerous private rooms where one can opt

for an array of treatments. There's also a large gym and an outdoor heated pool with swim-up bar. THE VERDICT: A stylish property situated in peaceful and relaxing surroundings away from the busy city centre. There were a few teething problems but, in it's first month of business, it's to be expected. THE DETAILS: W Singapore Sentosa Cove, 21 Ocean Way, Singapore. 'Wonderful' rooms start from around £197 per night and 'Marvellous' suites from around £404. See DAVID CLARE


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