An uninvited guest at the Russell Hotel

Posted: January 16, 2012 in coffee, Writing
Tags: , , ,

I spent the weekend with my family at the Russell Hotel in Russell Square.

This is a large, and at one time very grand hotel in the heart of London’s Bloomsbury (there is a scene in the my novel The Geek Manifesto set in the Russell Hotel – read it here.) We were there to mark my father’s birthday in what has now become a Jacobs family tradition. As always it was a lot of fun, mostly to watch my two young children tear up and down the cavernous hallways shrieking at elderly foreign guests, and ride up and down  in the lifts with a level of delight that can only be experienced by children under the age of ten and which, as an adult,  it is literally impossible to recapture or to even imagine what such a thrill felt like. They also like to damage or befoul something during their stay. The first year, my then 3 year old son broke an enormous and antique-looking double bed by leaping on to it. Last year his slightly older sister vomited on one of the wing-backed leather armchairs in the bar. This year it was her turn again, vomiting on the carpet  in what I estimated, despite its irregular shape, to be the exact topological centre of the hotel’s high-ceilinged, and impressively chandeliered entrance lobby.

I suggest that the Russell was at ‘one time’  a grand hotel, as I couldn’t help but notice one or two areas where standards may have slipped a touch. One could probably accept the broken drawer on the dressing table, or the absence of both fluffy bathrobes and complimentary biscuits, but leaving a reminder of the previous occupants of the room in the en suite toilet, that was instantly apparent to two of the five senses  (and had I not intervened in my young son’s fascinated exploration of the ‘gift’, would have led to him employing one or two more), was enough to prompt me to deduct a star in my report for TripAdvisor.

Still, we had a lot of fun. And here is my haiku:

The Russell Hotel;

Faded charm and shabby grace.

Shame about the turd.

I’m also going to start adding to my blog, pictures of macchiatos I have drunk. Here’s one I had at the British Museum.


  1. iwuja says:

    just feel its good to return your visit…i have seen you talk about this macchiato here again…am curious to know more about it.

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