As most of you know, I spend a lot of time going back and forth between London and Manchester. The BBC does pay for my hotel and travel but there are strict limits which must be followed. The limits are great if your outside of London, but extremely difficult in Central London. Anyway, I tend to try out different BBC preferred hotels because I've not found one I'm totally happy with.
So last week I had the pleasure of Club Quarters on Northumbria Street (behind Charing Cross Station). It offered a government rate which was compatible and so I booked it. Not only is club quarters very nice, modern and clean, but they give you lots of space and some rooms have a full kitchen setup so its like being in a serviced apartment.
What really got me going however was the Media Panel (see above picture) which not only had a hook up for playing your laptop or mp3player on the TV, but a dedicated VGA connection, Ethernet and even a Composite connection. I can't tell you the amount of times i've wanted to play something on the big screen in the room but not been able to get around the back of the plasma screen or have the cables to do the hook up. There's also power on the desk directly and free wifi through-out the hotel. Believe it or not I've been in hotels where there has only been one power socket and thats been used for the TV.
Its unfortunately not all perfect, for example breakfast is not included in the cost, although being in central London means theres a much cheaper cafe serving a full english breakfast not far away. Club quarters also insist on me giving them a credit card for extras (although they don't have a minibar and water is freely available on each floor). They say the reason why is to stop people using the rooms under other names.