LHR-LAX in BA New First Trip Report (Part Two)

Discussion in 'Trip Reports' started by THREEA4ME, Jul 5, 2012.  |  Print Topic

  1. THREEA4ME
    Original Member

    THREEA4ME Silver Member

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    The Heathrow Express is so clearly more efficient and practical than the tube if you are heading to Paddington area that it is a no-brainer. With coupon, you are spending 9 pounds more to travel in a non-crowded bullet train that shaves 60 minutes off the tube ride into London.

    My stay at the Hotel Indigo Paddington was very pleasant. I used 25K Priority club points (now it’s 35K) booking before the March 18 raise, but even at 35K points, $227ai, I think is a good deal. The Platinum benefits are a room upgrade and the waiver of the $20 TV/Internet/Porn package. For non-plats, first hour online is free and then they ream you. The room, as mentioned on trip advisor, is really very nice and the bed extremely comfortable (love the blackout blinds!).

    I hit various London shows (Democracy – brilliant; One Man, Two Guvnors – Hilarious Farce) and went to Wimbledon, and landed at the Radisson Blu Edwardian Kenilworth (down the block from the British Museum but with HORRIBLE signage) for my last night. As an Elite with Club Carlson, I was using my 50K points I received for staying at the Radisson LAX last month ($105 ai – just a tad below the Sheraton LAX as best LAX Hotel) which was not the bargain I thought it would be once I saw the room that they laughably were selling for 179 pounds a night. It was the tiniest room I’ve ever stayed in and I stayed at the LHR Yotel! It had to be a crew room. The bed was suitable for a 9 year old, the shower was so tiny that it was hard to fit inside and the carpet was old and worn. It was a 50-pound room that you see at various places in and around London and I’m torn about writing to Club Carlson to complain. I’m conflicted as it was an awards’ stay and it seems there is a prevailing attitude in the industry that even if you are a top elite, when you dare to redeem the points you earned, you get the crappiest room possible. No benefits granted. Just take the room and be happy you got the room for free (of course it's not free, isn't it, but that is how they are treating you).

    Of course, if I had known that I would have been given such a lousy room, I never would have stayed there – as the Radisson Blu’s in Paris are so much nicer. But trip advisor this time did not come through for me as they raved about the hotel and I got sucked in.

    I took the tube back to Heathrow the following morning – direct from Holburn Station for 5.30 pounds and walked up to the BA First counter, was treated like royalty, zipped through priority check-in and entered the Concordia Club Room Lounge which I found spectacular. Now on Flyertalk there seems to be a current trend that I find troubling: the overall contempt of the beenthere/donethat poster. I read so many horrible reviews of the lounge that I was expecting an LAX Admirals club experience and, while maybe not reaching Lufthansa Frankfurt Lounge heights, this all day experience was tremendous. A private cabana for a nap? Check. Private dining room for anything I wanted off a great menu? Check. 15-minute massage and luxurious shower? Check. Anything to eat or drink at anytime? Check? They have a large open-air veranda with big comfy day bed/chairs that you could luxuriate in and watch the great planes on the tarmac. No blaring TVs. No constant lounge announcements. Super-fast wifi. I mean, what else do you want? I wanted to move in there!

    Sadly, I had to leave to board BA 269 home and again was welcomed aboard like a celebrity and escorted to 3A where I again was able to enjoy New First even though this was a 747 (instead of the 777 on the outbound). I found the 777 to be a nicer plane but still loved the experience, from the great crew who was happy to be there (something I can’t always say for the blue-hairs in F on AA) and the food and wine (Cake bread Chard again! That’s a $50 bottle. Well done BA, well done).

    We arrived on time; I was first off the plane, and through Global Access in less than ten minutes. A pretty great trip!
     
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  2. Maximizer

    Maximizer Silver Member

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    Where do you get coupons for Heathrow Express?
     
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  3. marcwint55

    marcwint55 Gold Member

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    If you are an elite member with Virgin Atlantic, they send them to you annually. If you need one, I may have a couple still at home. feel free to contact me.
     
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  4. Maximizer

    Maximizer Silver Member

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    Thanks, that's super generous. Can I put them on hold for a day or so :) while I research what I need? I will be staying with friends in London who live on the same tube line as LHR but on the other side of town. So deciding between speed and convenience, need to look at schedules etc.
     
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  5. THREEA4ME
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    THREEA4ME Silver Member

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    Just google Heathrow Express Coupon Codes and lots come up.
     
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