The Gore, Kensington, London, England ****

Q: What is it? A: A Kensington favourite: An old-fashioned hotel of the good kind. Old fashioned entrance. Old fashioned interior. Great, old-fashioned service.

190 Queen’s Gate in Kensington where hotel guests have jumped out of cabs and carriages since 1892.

190 Queen’s Gate is an address on a tree-lined street in Kensington where hotel guests have jumped out of cabs and carriages since 1892. From the outside it doesn’t look like much have changed since then.

Stairs offering a much nicer between-the-floors experience than any elevator could.

Everybody stand up and just say no to minimalism, OK? I ended up never taking the elevator at The Gore, as these stairs offered a much nicer between-the-floors experience.

Rooms are not very big but beds are huge.

Rooms are not very big but beds are huge. It is also slightly higher than
a normal bed, so the eye gets fooled by perspective and proportions.

Sign aimed at those looking for dust bunnies.

As mentioned, beds at The Gore are higher than normal, which probably have brought guests to their knees to look for dust bunnies. This sign had the desired effect.

This is a pearl, a jewel and a real gem.
Sisters Ada and Fanny Cooke opened The Gore about 117 years ago. And I’m quite thankful that not much seems to have changed during that time. Stairs are steep. Doorways are narrow. Things look old. Ian Schrager couldn’t be more absent and that is refreshing. The relaxed and welcoming attitude goes well with the style of The Gore. They have been around for a while and they don’t have to prove much.

Trevor is the Head Concierge.
I don’t think that I ever have met a concierge of this calibre. Trevor works magic with a lunch restaurant where the kitchen will be closed in ten minutes and on top of that manages to get a table at the Hakkasan the very same night as I’m checking in. His performance is worth five stars and more. And he does his thing with style and wit. It’s actually quite a show, although Trevor is never being showy. He is just a Cockney geezer who seems to enjoy his job a lot. He alone is a reason to reserve yourself a room at The Gore.

Happiness is a very small room.
The Gore is not a particularly big hotel. To fit into this old Victorian building most of the 50 rooms must be small. Sheer mathematics, that is. Mine is too, and it looks like the rest of the hotel. Which means it looks rather old. But it has been upgraded in places where it counts: WiFi is free, linens are of top quality and when entering the bathroom you get the feeling it was renovated only last week.

They should have a fifth star. They really should.
One thing taints this otherwise wonderful hotel. The Bar 190. It plays on the classic interior and as you expect to be treated like Royalty (the standard has been set by reception and concierge) the disappointment is even bigger. Instead of taking care of the guests, the staff members make themselves busy focusing on just about anything else than their guests. Not good. But if The Gore replaces the grumpy lot behind The Bar 190 with people who like to tend a bar (they’re known as bartenders) I will throw in that fifth star before you could say “Let’s go to a nice bar instead!”

The Gore
190 Queen’s Gate
London, England, UK

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1 comment

  1. Pingback: The Pelham, South Kensington, London, United Kingdom **** | GUIDEBOOK.SE

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