The English may not have invented the concept of the bed and breakfast, but they’ve certainly perfected it over the years – and even a big city like London has a plethora of B&B options. What makes staying in a bed and breakfast in London a good option is that in England, B&Bs are more often budget accommodation than a splurge.
Bed and breakfasts in London are more likely to be in apartment buildings, so you won’t get the country charm of a B&B in the same way you might in the Cotswolds, but staying in a London B&B also gives you a chance to see a more residential side of the city – something that’s usually difficult to do if you’re staying in a hotel.
In a B&B you’ll have your own bedroom, but you may not have your own en suite bathroom – that’s fairly typical in bed and breakfasts, as they’re real houses. Breakfast is always included in the price of a B&B, and in London you won’t go wanting for food at breakfast time – a traditional English breakfast will certainly fill you up.
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Proprieters of B&Bs are often very knowledgeable about where they live, so don’t be shy about asking them for recommendations of things to do and see – especially if you want to get away from the standard list. Despite their willingness to offer tips and the fact that they’re serving you a big breakfast, don’t treat the proprieters like your personal servants – they aren’t there to do your laundry!
There are some websites that specialize in B&B listings, but the sheer number of B&Bs in London means that they aren’t likely to all be in one place. You can often find London bed and breakfasts under the “hotel” or even “hostels” listings, since they are in the realm of budget hotels, so don’t forget to look in those sections, too. Just be on the lookout for the words “B&B” or “bed and breakfast” in the name of the establishment.
photo by Charles Haynes