Canary Riverside Plaza, London
THE HOTEL: This independent five-star hotel in London's Canary Wharf previously operated as a Four Seasons hotel. Located on the banks of the Thames, it has 142 rooms over eight floors and is a ten-minute walk from Canary Wharf DLR and Underground stations. There is an adjacent pier for riverboat services into central London.
THE CHECK-IN: I arrived at the hotel a little flustered having underestimated both the weight of my luggage and the walk from Canary Wharf Underground station. There was a cheery greeting from the doorman who took my bag from me and guided me to reception. Check-in was swift and useful details were passed on regarding access to the health club and the frequency of services from the nearby riverboat pier.
THE ROOM: The first thing that struck me about the room was the large bay windows and views south west across London and the Thames. Decor was in neutral tones and a little tired in places but the room was well appointed with a safe, well-stocked minibar, kettle, large wardrobe, desk and flatscreen TV, but no iron and ironing board. The bathroom had a large tub, separate walk-in shower and L'Occitane products.
THE BUSINESS: Wifi access is free throughout the hotel and there's a business centre for guests' use. Meetings and events facilities include a two-storey ballroom (naturally lit and capacity for receptions of up to 300 people) and three function rooms with views across the Thames.
THE FACILITIES: Breakfast, lunch and dinner are served at the Quadrato Restaurant, Bar and Lounge, where I enjoyed an excellent three-course dinner albeit on an evening almost bereft of other diners. A terrace and gardens allows for al fresco dining during the summer. Guests have complimentary access to the hotel's health club, comprising large pool, gym and fi tness studios.
THE VERDICT: The staff were unfailingly excellent and the hotel has generally retained its high-end position and facilities in its new guise as an independent hotel. And there's no doubt its convenient location will see it continue to draw in business travellers.
THE DETAILS: Canary Riverside Plaza, 46 Westferry Circus, Canary Wharf, London, E14 8RS. Rates start from around £250 per night. www.canaryriversideplaza.com.
Reviewed by Andy Hoskins (2016)