Thistle Hotel Gatwick Airport (London)

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Thistle Hotel Gatwick Airport (London)

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Review of "Thistle Hotel Gatwick Airport (London)"

published 20/04/2002 | Chris_Padden
Member since : 30/11/-0001
Reviews : 183
Members who trust : 0
About me :
Pro Car Parking, no noise, close to airport, just what was needed
Cons Bit small
very helpful
Quality of Rooms
Standard of Service
Quality of Food & Drink
Quality of Facilities


Well I have already done an opinion on Crete in general, the hotel I stayed in on the island, and now to continue the series another hotel opinion. This time the Thistle Hotel at Gatwick airport was the first place of stop for the holiday.

Well it may not be the most stylish place to begin a great holiday, but it was sort of essential. We had a flight from London Gatwick airport to Crete’s capital Heraklion for 7:35 in the morning. Coming from the Westcounty it would be a long 3-hour drive to Gatwick to make that sort of time in the morning flight, and not liking early mornings anyway a hotel for the previous night looked a good option. Gatwick airport has several hotels from large chains, so there was plenty of choice. For no particular reason we chose the Thistle Hotel. Ok, so we went of a good reputation and some good experience of other Thistle hotels, so it was not pure chance. The total cost of the one night stay was £119. This included a £20 car fee (see below) and one room for five people. A double bed for mum dad and baby and two other beds. Great.

Location, Location, Location
Thistle have hotels all across the country and have one of the most famous links. They even have one in Exeter and in most cities across the country. The Gatwick version is not found in Gatwick, but in the town of Horley. It is still two miles out from the actual airport. This is a big advantage as it is off the flight path and you are not woken up at three in the morning by a Boeing 747 screaming overhead. Getting there is very easy with directions coming off their website it was so easy even I was able to not get lost there. Getting to Gatwick involves going through the M23 from pretty much any direction, via the M25 around London. To get to the hotel itself you have to overshoot the airport then go past three roundabouts following signs for Redhill to get on the A23. It is only a few miles off and the hotel is right on the final roundabout. Gatwick airport is signposted from miles out so there is very little chance to miss it.

The Gatwick Thistle Hotel was formerly a Tudor house, and still has the classic black and white look. This makes it not a high rise hotel, but has a little bit of a traditional feel still. However space is well used inside the hotel. The rooms are good and comfortable, if a little small. Well it is very small, there are lots of rooms and not a lot of floor space. It is not exactly the reason why people come, and it is used for sleeping and not for a full holiday. The size of the rooms is a let down, but it still is a pleasant hotel. Overall it is pretty standard but not uncomfortable.

There is very little to do in the hotel. It is a business meeting and sleep over style so does not try and provide for kids with swimming pools, gyms and games rooms. There are comprehensive conference facilities with meeting, seminar rooms and the location to London and the airport makes it popular destination. The rooms have a good bathroom and the beds are comfortable. The TV has satellite and the usual videos and ‘extras’ on paid TV. One of the best reasons for staying at the Thistle at Gatwick was the movement to and from the airport. They run a personal bus service direct from the hotel to both the north and south terminals at Gatwick. Buses leave the hotel every half hour on the half hour, and from the airport you ring up the hotel free of charge and they come and collect you. They charge you £20 extra on the bill for this, but it is well worth it. It saves paying for the long term parking for a week which more than pays itself, but also saves all the time and hassle of moving kids and bags to and from the car park to the airport then back again. They keep your car keys in reception, and your car is kept safe in the hotel car park. An excellent service.

The Gatwick Hotel has two eating-places. There is a bar and the full restaurant, both open to the public as well as guests. We stayed for just one evening and passed on the breakfast in time for our early flight. The food was good for one meal, but quite pricey as it was not included. The evening meal was very good. A wide selection of good food, a bit more than a pub lunch, but not quite gourmet. I had a salad starter and then a beef main course. They also cater very well for kids with a full menu of burgers and chips and so on. The breakfasts looked to be a cereal and other buffet with hot food to order. Lunches are sandwiches and other snacks but not full meals. The room service menu is similar to the snacks.

A great hotel, nice and comfortable for a stay. A great place to stay before a flight or any stopover, though not a place to come for a real holiday by itself. The price is very little considering the things you save for not having to pay long term parking at the airport and saving inconvenience. Well worth staying at for flights to London Gatwick.

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Comments on this review

  • sue.51 published 01/05/2002
    Good op - but at that price I think I will stick to my overnight treks when flying from Gatwick - on a clear run up the M4 we can make it from West Wales in around 3 hours - its the landing back bank holiday weekend tea-times and 8 hour treks home that get me. Sue
  • maximax published 30/04/2002
    good op :) ma x.
  • fingers published 20/04/2002
    Sounds very decent and a decent place to stay. In fact, it was a decent op as well. Decent all round.
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Listed on Ciao since: 20/04/2002