Thursday, 24 November 2011

The good, the best, the bad – Rafayel’s hits and misses

Rafayel is grateful to all its patrons for their glowing reviews on the hotel’s 5-star standards and the top-notch quality of our hospitality and services.  Even a thumbs-down on any of Rafayel’s features is accompanied by several positive comments, which we are proud to share.  Transparency and open communication with our customers is our unique stock-in-trade.

“Excellent service upgraded room”
Reviewed November 23, 2011 NEW

Wonderful experience
Great view
Had a massage in the spa
The restaurant manager couldn't,t have been more helpful
Room was upgraded
Errol the valet guy was helpful too

Room Tip: Room 214 has a great view

Reviewed November 22, 2011 NEW

I have stayed twice and I am sure I will be staying more in the future! The reception staff, bar staff, all the staff (espeacially the driver) was warm hospitable and just down right lovely. It was my birthday the second time round to which I recieved the best cup cakes I have ever tasted! I would like to recommend this hotel to everyone... but Im scared that if everyone knows this gem of a hotel it would be harder for me to book a room! Thank you Rafayel keep up the good work!!

Room Tip: You can look over the thames which is worth paying a little extra for for something special! 

“7th Stay and High Standards Remain”
Reviewed November 17, 2011 NEW

I first stayed in the Rafayel upon its soft opening just over 2 years ago and the excellent standards and level of Service has remained if not got better over the years. The Staff from the Owner Iqbal ,to the waiting staff remain nearly all the same so they have created a Great personal ambience and a welcoming warmth. Rooms are still to the same high standard and when on occasion I have reported any faults within the room the response from the Owner and his Team have been suberb.
I visit London regulary and would not stay anywhere else as I always recieve excellent treatment from all. Banyan Restaurant whick overlooks the Thames is still very good and there are some great deals to be had in the Hotels Spa. Location is also excellent with the Victoria Station Bus service stop on the Hotels doorstep as well as Clapham Junction Rail station. Well Done Iqbal and staff.
Room Tip: Amazon Rooms are Excellent and Spacious. Always contact Hotel for best rates available.

“More 4 star than 5”
Reviewed November 16, 2011

Stayed at this hotel before our honeymoon in the Thames room. View was brilliant especially of the helipad. Room was comfortable and clean. Bed was uncomfortable for me but wife thought it was OK. Only 3 stars given as many of the promised facilities were not available or working. iPod dock not working, DVD player not available and no games console in sight. Called reception 3 times, which was severely under-staffed, and asked for help. Went for dinner and returned to no solution. When the "IT Manager" finally arrived who looked strangely like the receptionist, he mentioned there was a problem with the dock. In the morning we asked what would be done about it and was met by the Manager in charge who was very rude and condescending suggesting the problem was with my iPod of which I have 2 and an iPhone and that "there was no need looking for a discount". Peeved me right off and ruined my afternoon. This is not what 5 star treatment is about. Parking also extra at £15, which manager did discount to his credit (after I flipped out). No valet or concierge in sight both times we arrived. Car returned with dirt splashes on the bonnet. In the middle of nowhere too, which isn't bad if you have your own transport but don't expect to walk out to any hustle/bustle or tube. More of a business hotel for those who just happen to be in the area. Simply because of that Manager I will never return. I've stayed in 5 star hotels before and this place doesn't come close. 4 star at the most.

Room Tip: Nile and Thames room provide great views of the river.

“Rafayel on the 170 bus route..... but fantastic hotel!!”
Reviewed November 16, 2011

Stayed for two nights from 10th November, this hotel is fantastic, I can't believe that we payed £130 a night and got this standard of hotel in London. I can't fault the hotel apart from the location and the staff in the spa weren't 5 star. We tryed to go into the relaxation room twice but there was hotel staff in there doing various things which isn't very relaxing. The spa could do with been managed a little better, it could easily have been more professional and relaxing with a few finishing touches. We were waiting to use the hot tub and two male staff were testing the water which I'm aware is very important but could have been done at a more suitable time when the spa was empty.

Apart from those small things everything was great, we stayed in a Mississippi room and the room was immaculate, we could plug our ipod in and listen to our music and the views from the huge windows are great.
The rooms are very stylish and comfortable and the bathroom was fantastic.

The hotel was a little difficult to get to and from but the hotel offers a free car to Clapham Common/Junction. We also found it just as easy to jump on or off the 170 bus from just outside the hotel, depending on traffic it takes between 15-30 mins to get to and from Victoria. The hotel shuttle takes about 10 minutes to get to Clapham Common.

We didn't get time to eat at the hotel as we had things booked but we went to the bar overlooking the Thames. We saw a helicopter land at the heliport while we had a drink and waited for the hotel shuttle to Clapham Common.

Overall we had a great stay at the hotel, I know I've mentioned a couple of faults but there is always room for improvement, the hotel can't improve the location and it wouldn't be such good value if it was north of the Thames. The hotel could very easily brush up the professionlism of the spa which is very nice but the staff need just a bit more direction to do there jobs and not been seen.

“A bit of luxury!!!”
Reviewed November 14, 2011

I travelled to this hotel on business with Tigi haircare.I was upgraded to a room with a river view it had panoramic views across the river. Check in was fast and efficient, staff are very friendly.
The room was a cresent shape with a huge bed and stunning lighting above.
The bathroom was large and well fitted to a 5 star + standard.
Food was very good and as a guest I was offered a discount on all meals ,in the asian style rest.
Quality of sleep was amazing well soundproofed and comfy,the decor throughout is boutique style to the highest of standards ,girly girls will love it!....but is not barbie doll so men will feel very at home as well!!!
Only downside is its not near tube stations but worth the taxi ride for the ambiance !!

Room Tip: Upgrades to above restruant very special rooms

“excellent for the price”
Reviewed November 13, 2011

We received a warm welcome and upgrade at check-in. The room was large and comfy as was the bathroom which had a rain shower and tub with tv. This hotel deserves all the praise it receives and I would not hesitate in returning, but it does lack that true 5* air, that 'knowing what you want before you know you want it' feeling. But for the price, it is outstanding.

We ate at the restaurant and sat by the window which was nice to watch the people pass by and the view over the Thames. Hotel guests are given a 50% discount and the food is lovely. I found it difficult to choose a starter as they all sounded fantastic. One thing which would be nice would be a little background music to lift the atmosphere a little. It was a Saturday night, and the restaurant was quite busy, it just seemed a little flat without music.

Check-out is a little early at 11am, but they will extend this to 12pm or later for £20. The building is mostly longer term rentals and the actual hotel part is quite small, so get in there early and book your room in this hidden gem south of the river.

“Amazing upgrade”
Reviewed November 13, 2011

Stayed here for two nights we booked the Yangtze room and were given an upgrade to the Nile suite. The suite was lovely and very spacious, the bathroom had a jacuzzi and a tv! Staff were very friendly and helpful. The hotel is a 30 minute tube journey into the centre so catching the 170 bus to Victoria from outside the hotel is much easier.

“5 Star Hotel at a 3 Star Price”
Reviewed November 12, 2011

I stayed at this 5 star hotel for 5 Nights in November for a Business Trip to London. Absolutely amazing stay, the staff was super friendly and very accommodating to any request. The room was very modern with plush beds, great showers, and excellent views of the river. The hotel offers meeting areas which were great for attending to clients. The restaurant and bar was very luxurious with some of the best food in London with priceless views of the river and Battersea. I would recommend this hotel to anyone staying in London for business or pleasure. In fact this this is one of the best hotels I have ever stayed in, and the staff made it an unbelievable experience. Treat yourself to luxury.

Room Tip: I would recommend the Yangtze rooms which are next to the meeting rooms if you are on business.

“Cracking Birthday Stay”
Reviewed November 11, 2011

My wife and I stayed here for a birthday treat whilst going to the Royal Albert Hall. The hotel was excellent from top to toe. The rooms had everything you could wish , were very clean as were the corridors and main area. The carpet in the hallways was very plush and your feet could actually sink into the pile.

The location was not ideal for our particular stay as it was a far ride to get the RAH, however the next day it was perfect for shopping/browsing and eating on the Kings Road.

I would definitely go back.

Check out Rafayel's special packages for the Christmas season and New Year's Eve bash (Hollywood Theme)!

Tuesday, 22 November 2011

Christmas season dining offers - Join the Rafayel family to eat, drink and be merry!

Rafayel  - a venue for every occasion and your home away from home.  Come and join the family to celebrate Christmas with a feast just for you.


 Christmas Eve, Christmas Day and Boxing Day (24-26 December 2011)

£40 per person


Same menu buffet-style available for special pre-Christmas parties (minimum 25 people) all December  2011

At £40 per head

 The Perfect Turkey
Classic Roast Turkey with chestnut, sage and apple stuffing with the perfect turkey gravy, saffron-scented bread sauce or cranberry sauce 


In-between savoury square mincemeat pies Snack and whet for more!


Brussels sprouts with bacon, almonds and creamsprouts coated in the amazing flavours of smoked bacon, almonds, lemon zest and double cream.

Roasted potatoes with garlic and rosemary: Roast potatoes with the flavours of fresh herbs are the classic accompaniment to your perfect turkey.

Port and cranberry braised red cabbage - Adding cranberries to red cabbage provides a touch more festive flavour and gives a sharp edge







Rum and raisin pudding truffles: Mini chocolate desserts with raisins, rum and double cream - who can resist these delicious, decadent truffle puds at Xmas?

Boozy Christmas pudding - We've got just the treat for the perfect end to your Christmas Day.


Rafayel on the Left Bank
34 Lombard Road | London SW11 3RF | +44 (0)20 7801 3638 | 44 (0)20 7801 3600

Monday, 21 November 2011

ON OFFER! New Year's Eve Packages - Save the date - 31st December 2011

Rafayel on the Left Bank
34 Lombard Road, London SW11 3RF | +44 (0)20 7801 3600


Package name: NYE1

Offer: £50 per person (Maximum 100 people)

Package includes:
  • 4-course New Year’s Eve dinner at the Banyan on the Thames at 8:00 pm
  • Entry to the Nirvana Lounge at 11:45-12:15 followed by later access to the Hollywood-themed New Year party complete with our professional DJ
  • Cocktails on arrival
  • Canapés
  • Fireworks over London from our 17th floor vantage point (11:45 pm - 12:15 am)
  • Sandwich bar at 2:00 am
(Call Reservations at +44 (0)20 7801 3600 or email

Package name: NYE2

Offer: £25 per person (Maximum 150 people or 75 couples)

Package includes:
  • Free entry to the Nirvana Lounge at 10:00 pm
  • Cocktails and Canapés on arrival
  • Fireworks over London from our 17th floor vantage point (11:45 pm - 12:15 am)
  • Later access to the Hollywood-themed New Year party complete with our professional DJ
  • Sandwich bar at 2:00 am  
(Call Reservations at +44 (0)20 7801 3600 or email

    Tuesday, 15 November 2011

    Don't brood! Tell us what is your great idea today?

    In our company we hire people who are ready to learn on the job.  We don't fear failures and hence put the most inexperienced at the deep end. The reason we do that is because we take pride in our experience and our ability to get the best out of 'everyone' who have latent talent but was not given a chance in the rat-race to bottom; that is solely built on grades, education and ivy schools.

    The team that we built had very little collective experience in a 5-star industry, but had great vigour, and in two years we have bewildered our critics and pleasantly surprised our enthusiasts by performing at far greater heights and retaining most of our people. We may have lost some chiefs but no toughened sergeants.

    A company has to offer a vision, a goal, and a self-training programme where people feel a change in their life, as if they don't go to a job but to a learning institution. Whatever they do, help them to give their best shot, and life is theirs to conquer. If they squabble and backbite and talk about each other it is their failure and their lack of confidence that see others as easy target. A leadership will not frown but expose those ills and handle them eye to eye and help change attitudes. Ills that are part of most cannot be cleaned by lectures but by face-offs.

    The above remarks should be the cornerstone strategy of any person who wants to make a breakthrough in life as a worker or a manager.  Just do it, give your best shot and follow the agreed script; say what you have to say in planning but once decided and agreed, follow the line and don't try to stop the moving train.
    Great managers/team players have some characteristics which can be learnt by upcoming and young managers through replication, that is, the simulation of the leadership styles of good managers to achieve results. If novices can thoroughly learn from and emulate characters of experts, they will certainly develop their skills. A manger that always has to be guided is no good.  'Where is my fresh new idea?’  A manager should ask himself every day.  

    Don't expect breakthroughs if you like mediocrity and rotas to define your work, don't spend time doing routine, add value if you want to improve , look around and pick up, every second you do that you create a new opportunity of self discovery and self improvement .

    The greatest skill of a great Manager is that he will create a team of commonplace individuals performing and punching far above their individual weight. A great manager’s absence is felt, his ideas are missed and he leads the whole team’s performance to far more than the sum of the performances of individual members of the team.  Lot of indispensables are sleeping in graveyards, without touching indispensability, a great manager will make himself the idea man. 

    Great leaders have exhibited diverse kinds of management styles. Great leaders are visionary people who are able to attain results by people. They exhibit authority in themselves and exhume confidence in their team members. Circumstances make men, just as much as men make circumstances. Some leaders are democratic, allowing team members to air their opinions. Some are dictatorial, explaining what they want from their teams to the team members to execute.  All styles provide opportunity and challenges and may be used in definite circumstances.

    Great leaders share one feature in common: Experience. It is their priceless jewel and in decision making that originally looks awfully wrong, they need to prove the crowd wrong  again and again. Originality of style and highest form of decision making is the hallmark of great managers, they change the routine and bring fresh approaches to where rust is overpowering.

    What is a Team? A team is "a group that works towards a single, common, objective." Teams have been used since time immemorial by common men to achieve uncommon results.

    Teams were used to construct the Pyramids in Egypt, The church of Babylon, built in 11th century, the Great Wall of China and the Empire State Building completed in 1931. Some of these teams were ruthlessly organised by tyrants, others with passion and love. Numerous projects have been finished and built before the beginning of project management through the help of teams. Team is an orchestra and has no place for a player who is not in sync.  Either be a living ocean or be a living fish; a dead fish cannot stay in a living ocean and a dead sea does not harbour life.

    Any member of the team who does not work in synergy with the objective falls out of sync and is left behind. Team discusses pros and cons 100 times but sticks to the decision once taken. Dilly dallying of leadership decision destroys the fabric of a company or an organisation. Gurus define a team as "a small number of people with complementary skills who are committed to a common purpose, performance goals, and approach for which they are mutually accountable". "A team is a group in which members work together intensively to achieve a common group goal."

    The end result is a good manger will never speak more than a necessary word, will never back bite, and never carry a word. And a good team will follow once the decision is taken and not drag their feet on the ground. One last thing: accept your mistakes and learn to say sorry and correct your bearings; all that will help greatly in making you an outstanding individual.