The Georgian House is still run by the original family of the property, which was built in 1851, although they’re nowhere to be seen at check-in. The greeting in the cosy reception from the multinational staff is nevertheless warm, and check-in completed with alacrity.
Sandwiched between the travelling hub of Victoria and the upmarket Pimlico (Winston Churchill and Laurence Olivier are among past residents), the hotel is particularly well-placed for getting around London and out of the city entirely towards southern England. While it’s on the same road that serves Victoria Coach Station, and a similar distance from the train and underground, it’s far enough from the hubbub to be a peaceful semi-retreat.
Our somewhat-poky ground-floor double room has a beautiful view of a brick wall, while the bathroom is contortionist-level tiny. But you won’t be making a special visit to this hotel for one of those rooms: the Georgian House’s trump card is its Harry Potter-themed “Wizard Chambers”. These unique lodgings are fitted out with all manner of Hogwarts-tastic additions, including four-poster beds, stained-glass windows, rows of bottled “potions” along ceiling shelving and copies of J K Rowling’s books. Potter aficionados have been queuing up to check in to these rooms, so you’ll need to book a good time – usually months – in advance. The hotel also provides help with booking Harry Potter tours around London. Two smaller, cheaper themed rooms, named the “Enchanted Chambers”, are also available.
Touted as a boutique B&B, the Georgian House keeps things suitably simple outside of its rooms. There’s no bar, gym, pool, spa or any other trappings; the only meal served is breakfast. The building is arguably more Georgian (as per the hotel’s name) than the Victorian era in which it was constructed, which means lots of stairways and confusing corridors. Not quite Platform 9¾, admittedly, but it lends a certain quaint appeal.
Everybody from the reception and serving staff to the cleaners and a brace of builders who are tearing up some carpet during our stay are approachable and chatty.
As previously mentioned, breakfast is the only dining option, served in a functional but likeable basement. In keeping with the hotel’s moniker, the quintessential British brekkie options are all on the menu, including a full English with spiced sausages. Little touches, such as homemade jams, further elevate the meal. A continental breakfast is also available.
The breakfast and – if you’re lucky enough to stay in them – the Harry Potter chambers.
A larger bathroom would have been appreciated, while the noise from another nearby bathroom was audible from our bed.
Dumbledore, Voldemort or Hermione fans of all ages will delight at the Georgian House’s themed rooms. The rest of the property is attractively affordable for the location, if somewhat less enchanting.
The bottom line
Regular double rooms at the Georgian House cost from £114 (Dh641); the Wizard Chambers cost from £209 (Dh1,175), based on two people sharing; the Enchanted Chambers cost from £199 (Dh1,119), all including taxes and breakfast.