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Southampton Hotel recommendations


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We plan to arrive 2 days before our cruise at LHR and will take a private car to Southampton. Any recommendations on areas to stay. We will cab it to the dock on cruise day so we don't have to mess with our luggage. We've both been to London several times and want to stay close to port. Looking for easy walking to restaurants, outdoor area, etc.

      Mahalo.

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Aloha

 

The cruise terminals & city centre hotels etc are on a thumbnail map at the bottom of this page

https://www.londontoolkit.com/travel/southampton_accommodation.htm

 

All of the hotels on that map are within a £10 taxi ride from any cruise terminal

 

Cheapest is Ibis Budget - clean and modern but small rooms and very limited facilities. We've found Ibis Budget elsewhere in the UK to be perfectly adequate for an overnite.

Most expensive is Southampton Harbour Hotel, built to resemble a cruise ship. We've enjoyed sunday lunch there, and taken a sneak-peek of the rest of the ship (sorry - a sneak-peek of the rest of the hotel 😉), very nice but very expensive.

 

Best-located for a very short walk to the city's few old-town sights, the waterfront, shopping, pubs & restaurants are Premier Inn West Quay (blue 4 on the map) and Ennio's, (blue 8 on the map) and the hotels between those two.

Premier Inn is the UKs biggest & best budget chain and the West Quay one is very popular with cruisers. The adjoining Moxy's is a quirky Marriott brand, recently opened. 

Leonardo Royal has a range of rooms, Holiday Inn is a rather gaunt rectangular building typical of the 1970's but very popular with cruisers - it overlooks City Cruise Terminal.

Hole-in-the-Wall and Ennios are interesting boutiques - Hole-in-the-Wall is actually built into the old city wall, Ennios is an Italian restaurant with rooms above converted from a historic warehouse.

 

The Mercure Dolphin Hotel is currently contracted to the government & not available.

 

A range prices and standards and styles, but none on that list need to be avoided

 

JB 🙂

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10 hours ago, John Bull said:

The Mercure Dolphin Hotel is currently contracted to the government & not available.

JB, is this a legacy copy ‘n’ paste from lockdown/quarantine days? 

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29 minutes ago, Cotswold Eagle said:

JB, is this a legacy copy ‘n’ paste from lockdown/quarantine days? 

 

Nothing to do with Covid, but yes, a copy-n-paste - the Dolphin had been booked by the Govt for immigrants.

Sorry, Yehootu, didn't bother to check if things had changed - saw no reason why it should.

But it has - Mercure Dolphin now back available. 

 

JB 🙂

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Just started doing our research for next year, retired have nothing but time to plan.....and Babysit the grandkids. Mahalo for all the info.

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On 5/18/2022 at 3:41 AM, John Bull said:

Aloha

 

The cruise terminals & city centre hotels etc are on a thumbnail map at the bottom of this page

https://www.londontoolkit.com/travel/southampton_accommodation.htm

 

All of the hotels on that map are within a £10 taxi ride from any cruise terminal

 

Cheapest is Ibis Budget - clean and modern but small rooms and very limited facilities. We've found Ibis Budget elsewhere in the UK to be perfectly adequate for an overnite.

Most expensive is Southampton Harbour Hotel, built to resemble a cruise ship. We've enjoyed sunday lunch there, and taken a sneak-peek of the rest of the ship (sorry - a sneak-peek of the rest of the hotel 😉), very nice but very expensive.

 

Best-located for a very short walk to the city's few old-town sights, the waterfront, shopping, pubs & restaurants are Premier Inn West Quay (blue 4 on the map) and Ennio's, (blue 8 on the map) and the hotels between those two.

Premier Inn is the UKs biggest & best budget chain and the West Quay one is very popular with cruisers. The adjoining Moxy's is a quirky Marriott brand, recently opened. 

Leonardo Royal has a range of rooms, Holiday Inn is a rather gaunt rectangular building typical of the 1970's but very popular with cruisers - it overlooks City Cruise Terminal.

Hole-in-the-Wall and Ennios are interesting boutiques - Hole-in-the-Wall is actually built into the old city wall, Ennios is an Italian restaurant with rooms above converted from a historic warehouse.

 

The Mercure Dolphin Hotel is currently contracted to the government & not available.

 

A range prices and standards and styles, but none on that list need to be avoided

 

JB 🙂

Hello JB, what is the common tip for hotel staff,  taxis and port workers who take your luggage? 

Thank you for all of the helpful advice and information you provide.

 

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32 minutes ago, irisbax3 said:

Hello JB, what is the common tip for hotel staff,  taxis and port workers who take your luggage? 

Thank you for all of the helpful advice and information you provide.

 

 

Do you tip airport workers who load the carousel? 😉

The guy who takes your bags at the cruise terminal just  puts them on a conveyor-belt, when they reach the ship, ship's crew does the rest. So nothing for port workers, altho I understand it's the norm in the US. 

 

Hotels - normally nothing for reception, most folk carry their own luggage but a pound or two if staff do it, usually nothing for housekeeping (although some folk leave a pound or two), or bar staff or breakfast.  Evening dining is personal choice - if billed separately anywhere from nothing to 10%, certainly nothing if there's a service charge

Taxis -nothing or rounding-up for short hops in town, £5 to £10 for longer-distance private transfers (always pre-book) such as Southampton to London.

 

But there are no hard-and-fast practices - if you tip nobody anywhere you won't get chased down the street.

But it's normal to show appreciation for anyone who goes the extra mile.

 

JB 🙂

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4 minutes ago, John Bull said:

 

Do you tip airport workers who load the carousel? 😉

The guy who takes your bags at the cruise terminal just  puts them on a conveyor-belt, when they reach the ship, ship's crew does the rest. So nothing for port workers, altho I understand it's the norm in the US. 

 

Hotels - normally nothing for reception, most folk carry their own luggage but a pound or two if staff do it, usually nothing for housekeeping (although some folk leave a pound or two), or bar staff or breakfast.  Evening dining is personal choice - if billed separately anywhere from nothing to 10%, certainly nothing if there's a service charge

Taxis -nothing or rounding-up for short hops in town, £5 to £10 for longer-distance private transfers (always pre-book) such as Southampton to London.

 

But there are no hard-and-fast practices - if you tip nobody anywhere you won't get chased down the street.

But it's normal to show appreciation for anyone who goes the extra mile.

 

JB 🙂

I sincerely appreciate you taking time to answer my questions. Thank you so much!

On 5/18/2022 at 3:41 AM, John Bull said:

Aloha

 

The cruise terminals & city centre hotels etc are on a thumbnail map at the bottom of this page

https://www.londontoolkit.com/travel/southampton_accommodation.htm

 

All of the hotels on that map are within a £10 taxi ride from any cruise terminal

 

Cheapest is Ibis Budget - clean and modern but small rooms and very limited facilities. We've found Ibis Budget elsewhere in the UK to be perfectly adequate for an overnite.

Most expensive is Southampton Harbour Hotel, built to resemble a cruise ship. We've enjoyed sunday lunch there, and taken a sneak-peek of the rest of the ship (sorry - a sneak-peek of the rest of the hotel 😉), very nice but very expensive.

 

Best-located for a very short walk to the city's few old-town sights, the waterfront, shopping, pubs & restaurants are Premier Inn West Quay (blue 4 on the map) and Ennio's, (blue 8 on the map) and the hotels between those two.

Premier Inn is the UKs biggest & best budget chain and the West Quay one is very popular with cruisers. The adjoining Moxy's is a quirky Marriott brand, recently opened. 

Leonardo Royal has a range of rooms, Holiday Inn is a rather gaunt rectangular building typical of the 1970's but very popular with cruisers - it overlooks City Cruise Terminal.

Hole-in-the-Wall and Ennios are interesting boutiques - Hole-in-the-Wall is actually built into the old city wall, Ennios is an Italian restaurant with rooms above converted from a historic warehouse.

 

The Mercure Dolphin Hotel is currently contracted to the government & not available.

 

A range prices and standards and styles, but none on that list need to be avoided

 

JB 🙂

Hello JB, what is the common tip for hotel staff,  taxis and port workers who take your luggage? 

Thank you for all of the helpful advice and information you provide.

 

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8 minutes ago, Magiemae41 said:

Hi all, so glad to see this post.  We just made reservations at Moxy for our trip in September.  Does anyone have experience with this hotel?

Mae

 

Fairly new, opened during the pandemic.

No personal experience, but it's a slightly quirky Marriott brand - not the usual Marriott experience, designed to appeal to the younger set.

 

Best bet for reviews is a booking agency, here are booking.com's reviews .................

https://www.booking.com/hotel/gb/moxy-southampton.en-gb.html?aid=376362&label=bh-yRUEyMXdyFdX6V220K8x8QS541115883818%3Apl%3Ata%3Ap1%3Ap22%2C563%2C000%3Aac%3Aap%3Aneg%3Afi%3Atiaud-1183547560947%3Akwd-1983705807%3Alp1006715%3Ali%3Adec%3Adm%3Appccp%3DUmFuZG9tSVYkc2RlIyh9YTQUGSsRwx9_llxDbUbGjaI&sid=07d12490bb05c128d7b4e5cb5de65d79&dest_id=5680001;dest_type=hotel;dist=0;group_adults=2;group_children=0;hapos=1;hpos=1;no_rooms=1;req_adults=2;req_children=0;room1=A%2CA;sb_price_type=total;sr_order=popularity;srepoch=1653480145;srpvid=0ed654a717b10185;type=total;ucfs=1&#tab-reviews

 

Location is excellent - a stone's throw from the big West Quay mall & opposite the adjacent West Quay entertainment complex (multi-plex cinema, bowling alley, lots of restaurants - most with inside & outside dining). Beyond that the city wall & BarGate, which divides the new(er) main shopping street called Above Bar from old town (Below Bar). Most of Southampton's few sights are Below Bar eg Tudor Merchant's House & Gardens in Bugle Street

City Cruise Terminal is a 10-minute walk (cut thro Holiday Inn's carpark), Horizon Cruise Terminal five mins beyond that, Ocean Cruise Terminal 15 minutes, all on level ground. Other cruise terminals are a short taxi hop (£10 or less).

The restaurants in the West Quay complex are national & international brands - if you want something more traditional, individual, and proprietor-run head to the pubs & restaurants on the waterfront of old town - pubs like the Dancing Man and a hundred yards behind it in Bugle Street the Duke of Wellington,  and restaurants like Ennio's and La Regata. All within a 10-minute walk.

 

JB 🙂

 

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Thank you so much JB - Most of the hotels I heard mentioned were booked so I was hoping booking.com ratings were on point.   Do you happen to know if there are excursions or transportation we can take from Southampton to Stonehenge?

 

Mae

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13 minutes ago, Magiemae41 said:

Thank you so much JB - Most of the hotels I heard mentioned were booked so I was hoping booking.com ratings were on point.   Do you happen to know if there are excursions or transportation we can take from Southampton to Stonehenge?

 

Mae

 

No coach excursions to Stonehenge from Southampton, but very easy to DIY..

 

Take the train from Southampton Central station, 10 - 15 minute walk from Moxy.

Buy return tickets for the direct half-hourly train to Salisbury about £12.

Journey time about 35 minutes.

Avoid saturdays or sundays if you can

 

The Stonehenge Tour bus leaves from the station forecourt - small station, very easy to spot it. Catch a train that ties in with the Stonehenge Tour bus times

Because independent travellers have to pre-book a timed arrival slot at Stonehenge, buy your Stonehenge tickets on-line with your tour ticket, or from the driver - their tickets have no arrival time restrictions, you just walk straight in. NB If you pay the driver on-the-day you'll need cash due to contactless card limits.

 

Expect to spend about 60 to 90 minutes at Stonehenge.

 

On the return journey to Salisbury there's an option to visit Old Sarum on the edge of the city - a hill fort that was the original city. Needs about 45 minutes. Then go back to the same bus-stop. You don't have to wait for the next  Stonehenge Tour bus, your ticket is good for any Salisbury Reds bus - I think from that stop they all go to the city centre, but double-check with the driver. Old Sarum is uphill and rather exposed - not worthwhile unless you have the time, you're tolerably fit, and the weather's decent.

 

Salisbury  is a super little historic & laid-back city. Visit the magnificent cathedral - it has the tallest spire in the UK, one of the four original Magna Cartas, and the world's oldest clock. Entry by donation or combined Stonehenge/cathedral ticket. Cathedral not open for visiting on sundays.

 

Make you way back to the station, a 15 minute walk or bus or taxi hop, for a train back to Southampton.

 

https://ojp.nationalrail.co.uk

https://www.thestonehengetour.info/

https://www.english-heritage.org.uk/visit/places/stonehenge

 

JB 🙂

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This thread is exactly what I've been searching for. Our TA has us booked at the Holiday Inn M27 Junction 7. It appears this hotel is a bit of a hike from the cruise port and downtown. I'm thinking this could be a pricey taxi ride. Any thoughts on this John Bull?

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2 hours ago, John Bull said:

 

No coach excursions to Stonehenge from Southampton, but very easy to DIY..

 

Take the train from Southampton Central station, 10 - 15 minute walk from Moxy.

Buy return tickets for the direct half-hourly train to Salisbury about £12.

Journey time about 35 minutes.

Avoid saturdays or sundays if you can

 

The Stonehenge Tour bus leaves from the station forecourt - small station, very easy to spot it. Catch a train that ties in with the Stonehenge Tour bus times

Because independent travellers have to pre-book a timed arrival slot at Stonehenge, buy your Stonehenge tickets on-line with your tour ticket, or from the driver - their tickets have no arrival time restrictions, you just walk straight in. NB If you pay the driver on-the-day you'll need cash due to contactless card limits.

 

Expect to spend about 60 to 90 minutes at Stonehenge.

 

On the return journey to Salisbury there's an option to visit Old Sarum on the edge of the city - a hill fort that was the original city. Needs about 45 minutes. Then go back to the same bus-stop. You don't have to wait for the next  Stonehenge Tour bus, your ticket is good for any Salisbury Reds bus - I think from that stop they all go to the city centre, but double-check with the driver. Old Sarum is uphill and rather exposed - not worthwhile unless you have the time, you're tolerably fit, and the weather's decent.

 

Salisbury  is a super little historic & laid-back city. Visit the magnificent cathedral - it has the tallest spire in the UK, one of the four original Magna Cartas, and the world's oldest clock. Entry by donation or combined Stonehenge/cathedral ticket. Cathedral not open for visiting on sundays.

 

Make you way back to the station, a 15 minute walk or bus or taxi hop, for a train back to Southampton.

 

https://ojp.nationalrail.co.uk

https://www.thestonehengetour.info/

https://www.english-heritage.org.uk/visit/places/stonehenge

 

JB 🙂

 thank you so much again.  This is extremely helpful!

Mae

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Posted (edited)
1 hour ago, peikris said:

This thread is exactly what I've been searching for. Our TA has us booked at the Holiday Inn M27 Junction 7. It appears this hotel is a bit of a hike from the cruise port and downtown. I'm thinking this could be a pricey taxi ride. Any thoughts on this John Bull?

Not at all well-placed, peikris - on the city boundary, rather remote from the city centre & facilities😟.

Makes much more sense for folk who have a car

5 miles from the city centre & cruise terminals.- about £16-£20 e/w by taxi.

Nothing much locally either -

10 minute walk to a spread-out out-of-town shopping area with a Burger King, a KFC and a MaccyD.

15 minute walk in the other direction to West End local shops & a decent fish & chips takeaway. Nearest pub is Southampton Arms in Moorgreen Road, about 20 minute walk - a locals' pub, convivial, food is inexpensive & surprisingly good value.

Or a 2.5 mile taxi ride to the village of Botley -  Reggina's Italian restaurant and the Old Mill restaurant and 3 pubs. Or to Miller & Carter's steakhouse on Providence Hill - all quite expensive but excellent, best to book at any.

 

How many nights?

Can you switch hotels? Holiday Inn Express West isn't much better-located, but the Holiday Inn on Herbert Walker Avenue is right by City Cruise Terminal and with Southampton's downtown pretty-well on the doorstep. 

 

JB 🙂

 

Edited by John Bull
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3 hours ago, peikris said:

This thread is exactly what I've been searching for. Our TA has us booked at the Holiday Inn M27 Junction 7. It appears this hotel is a bit of a hike from the cruise port and downtown. I'm thinking this could be a pricey taxi ride. Any thoughts on this John Bull?


For the reasons JB said, not a good choice. Why would your TA do that? 

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  • 3 weeks later...

John Bull…you are so knowledgeable and helpful.  I need some teaching in manners/protocol.  I’m staying at Ennio’s in November and am wanting a pub dinner. I went to Duke of Wellington last time, so now I’d like to try the Red Lion.  I am a woman, solo.  What is the proper way to makes one’s entry while in a pub?  Here in Canada, if we enter a restaurant and there is no greeter, then one just finds a table, sits down, and a waiter will come forward.  I don’t think it’s like that in pubs, unless the manners have changed.  I really can’t remember what I did at the Duke of W….I think I went to the bar and ordered lunch, then found a table.  Is that the proper procedure?  I want to look like I know what I’m doing or a reasonable facsimile anyway.  
Also, do you think it’s a reasonable walk from Ennio’s to the West Quay shopping centre?  
Thank you so much for your valuable knowledge.

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Posted (edited)
49 minutes ago, ladysail2 said:

What is the proper way to makes one’s entry while in a pub?

There isnt a specific answer, I'm afraid.

 

Some pubs are effectively restaurants in buildings that used to be pubs. Others are a mix of restaurant and pub, with separate dining and drinking areas (and will usually have servers who take orders). Others are more drinking places that serve food (where, usually, you'd order food at the bar). The more restauranty places will often offer a reservation facility.

 

The more restauranty places will often have a greeter at the door. In other places, go straight to the bar  - they may direct you to a table, or suggest you find one yourself, and come back to order, then giving them the table number.

Edited by Harters
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1 minute ago, Harters said:

There isnt a specific answer, I'm afraid.

 

Some pubs are effectively restaurants in buildings that used to be pubs. Others are a mix of restaurant and pub, with separate dining and drinking areas (and will usually have servers). Others are more drinking places that serve food (where, usually, you'd order food at the bar). The more restauranty places will often offer a reservation facility.

 

The more restauranty places will often have a greeter at the door. In other places, go straight to the bar  - they may direct you to a table, or suggest you find one yourself, and come back to order, then giving them the table number.

The Duke of Wellington seems to be very pub-like, I didn’t get the restaurant feel when I entered. I’m not sure what the Red Lion will be like.  I guess it’s always safe to go to the bar and ask what is proper.  I love the places with ‘history’ written all over them. If only walls could talk, LOL.  
I ask these questions because I don’t like looking like an uneducated tourist.  I don’t have an English accent so I suppose they’ll figure out that  I’m a tourist anyway,  haha. 

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Posted (edited)
1 hour ago, ladysail2 said:

John Bull…you are so knowledgeable and helpful.  I need some teaching in manners/protocol.  I’m staying at Ennio’s in November and am wanting a pub dinner. I went to Duke of Wellington last time, so now I’d like to try the Red Lion.  I am a woman, solo.  What is the proper way to makes one’s entry while in a pub?  Here in Canada, if we enter a restaurant and there is no greeter, then one just finds a table, sits down, and a waiter will come forward.  I don’t think it’s like that in pubs, unless the manners have changed.  I really can’t remember what I did at the Duke of W….I think I went to the bar and ordered lunch, then found a table.  Is that the proper procedure?  I want to look like I know what I’m doing or a reasonable facsimile anyway.  
Also, do you think it’s a reasonable walk from Ennio’s to the West Quay shopping centre?  
Thank you so much for your valuable knowledge.

 

Harters has given you the general idea.

 

In most restaurants you'll be greeted at the door or at a service point, sometimes at the bar - you don't just bowl along & sit at an empty table because they may be fully booked or some tables reserved even if there's no sign on the table.  

 

In most pubs, unless there's a service point inside the main door or the door to the restaurant part your best plan is to head to the bar and ask "Hello, is the kitchen open?" or "Hi, two of us for dinner?" or somesuch .That's how it is at the Red Lion, as will be obvious when you walk in - dining is upstairs.

 

Yes, the Red Lion is a very historic & attractive building, especially inside - but it's very small and clientele is mainly locals dropping in for a pint. When we've dined there we've been on a narrow balcony overlooking the bar. Food is good value, lots of "pub" meals like curries, hotpots, cottage pie & such as well as steaks etc.. Quality is very acceptable if not exceptional. Service is laid-back & informal.

Best to book.

BTW there are a couple of other Red Lions in Southampton's suburbs.

 

Ennio's is very much an Italian restaurant.

Excellent service, excellent quality, not cheap but allowing for quality & service it's decent value.

 

A place which may have opened since your last visit..............

The city's historic 13th C. stone-built Wool House, on the corner of the waterfront a couple of hundred yards down from the Duke of Wellington was the Maritime Museum before the fancy new "Sea City" museum was built. A few years back it opened as a pub & micro-brewery. Much bigger than the Red Lion but the same drinking downstairs / eating upstairs. My favourite is the beef rag-and-bone.

Again, best to book.

http://dancingmanbrewery.co.uk/#

 

Ennio's to West Quay is about 10 - 15 minutes.

Either up High street to the Bargate or past the Duke of Wellington and Tudor House, some modern housing & thro the city wall.

 

JB 🙂

 

Edited by John Bull
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37 minutes ago, ladysail2 said:

I’m not sure what the Red Lion will be like.

It has a Facebook page which shows the menu. It's the sort of menu that, to me, reads like one you'd see in a drinking pub that does food, rather than a more restauranty place.  That said, there's a recent Tripadvisor post mentioning a "restaurant area at the back". I'd suggest you go straight to the bar and ask for a table.

 

FWIW, another Tripadvisor post mentions the steak & kidney pie. It really doesnt get more traditional British pub food than that. If you're a meat eater, that might just be dinner sorted.

 

John

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Thank you Harters and JB for all your information. I saw the Wool House on the map, but thought it was a museum.  I certainly wouldn’t just go and sit at a table…knowing that one goes to the bar first.  I saw the FB pictures of the Red Lion…it looks very nice.  I’m certainly looking forward to my visit. Just wished I drank beer, but have never taken a liking to it.

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