Review: The Langley, Marriott Luxury Collection Hotel

Filed Under: Marriott
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I had a roughly 24 hour layover at Heathrow, as I was arriving from Munich in the evening, and was flying to Tokyo the following evening.

In a post shortly before the trip I talked about my thought process when it came to booking a hotel for this layover:

  • I could have just booked a Heathrow Airport hotel, which would have been convenient, though is kind of boring when you have 24 hours
  • I could have gone into London, which was a decent idea, but it would take over an hour in each direction to get to & from
  • I started looking into some of the beautiful countryside hotels not far from Heathrow

While I had noticed several nice-looking Small Luxury Hotels of the World properties, reader Matt pointed out The Langley, a Marriott Luxury Collection property that’s not far from Heathrow. So I decided to book that.

Booking The Langley, A Luxury Collection Hotel

The Langley is definitely priced like a luxury hotel, and a standard room for my one night weekday stay in January would have cost 365GBP, or about 475USD.

Rather amazingly, this is “only” a Category 5 Marriott Bonvoy property, so a free night costs just 30,000 points.

I value Marriott points at ~0.7 cents each, so that’s an amazing deal when you consider that’s the equivalent of ~210USD for the night, by my valuation.

But I didn’t even redeem points for the stay. Rather I redeemed a Marriott free night certificate offered by one of their credit cards. There are three Marriott credit cards offering anniversary free night certificates:

Personally, I used the certificate from my business card. Yep, a card with a $125 annual fee got me a free night here… awesome!

The Langley Hotel Review

The 41-room Langley opened in June 2019, so the hotel is only about half a year old. It’s the first Luxury Collection hotel in the English countryside, as it’s located in Buckinghamshire.

The hotel consists of two buildings:

  • The main building of the hotel is the former hunting lodge of the third Duke of Marlborough
  • Nearby is the 18th century Brew House, which has the remaining rooms

The property went through a six-year renovation before opening as a hotel for the first time, so that’s kind of cool.

Let’s get into the actual hotel stay, starting with the arrival and check-in experience, and then we’ll look at the pool, gym, and spa, as well as all the food & beverage outlets.

The Langley Arrival & Check-In

I took an Uber from Heathrow to The Langley, which was about a 25 minute drive. It was a very different drive than you’d usually experience going into London, as we first drove through a couple of small towns, and then through the countryside, where I felt like we were in the middle of nowhere.

To be honest, having just binge watched both seasons of Netflix’s “The Investigator: A British Crime Story” a couple of days prior, I was almost a little bit freaked out being in this area, because it was all so remote and sparsely populated, and reminded me of some of the areas where the show took place.

That changed a bit when we pulled up to The Langley… WOW! Dorothy, we’re not at Heathrow anymore!

The Langley Luxury Collection exterior

The exterior was equally beautiful during the day (though in the UK in January it can almost be tough to tell the difference between night and day).

The Langley Luxury Collection exterior

The Langley Luxury Collection exterior

For the record, below is the second building of the hotel, the former Brew House.

The Langley Luxury Collection exterior

Up the grand staircase was the intimate lobby, which had beauty that matched the outside, given that it felt history while also feeling fresh and well maintained.

The Langley lobby

The Langley lobby

At reception I was welcomed by Jasmine, who couldn’t have been nicer. She immediately addressed me by name, not because I was getting special treatment (at least I don’t think), but rather because I suspect I was the only check-in that evening.

This whole property gave me such Dubai vibes, in the sense that it was deserted. I felt like I had the entire hotel to myself for the entire time I was there — there was no one else at breakfast, and no one else at the gym, pool, spa, etc.

The Langley reception

Jasmine told me I had the option of two suites on account of my Ambassador status — I could either choose a junior suite inside the main house (one floor above the lobby), or I could choose a bigger suite immediately next to the main house. I asked which she recommended, and she said the latter, so I went with that. Jasmine at that point escorted me to my room.

The Langley Suite

I was given room #31, which was technically a named suite — the Bateson Harvey Suite. The suite was kind of in the same building, but my room had an exterior door at the very side of the building. Talk about a grand room entrance!

The Langley entrance to my room

As you can see, you go up a few steps to enter the room, and then immediately inside the entrance to the room you go down a few steps to access the rest of the room.

The Langley suite entryway

I’d say the room was more of a junior suite than a full suite, based on the fact that it was just one room. The room was beautifully appointed.

The Langley suite

The Langley suite

The room had a comfortable king size bed, with a soft mattress and great bedding.

The Langley suite bed

It was also a cute touch that they had an aromatherapy balm with turndown service, which I’ve never seen before.

The Langley suite aromatherapy balm

The seating was back towards the entrance, as there was a loveseat and two chairs.

The Langley suite sitting area

The Langley suite couch

Behind the loveseat was a proper desk.

The Langley suite desk

Also in this area was an Illy coffee setup as well as a minibar.

The Langley suite table

The Langley suite minibar

There was a welcome amenity consisting of fresh fruit and a couple of macarons.

The Langley welcome amenity

Behind the bed was a large closet and vanity.

The Langley suite vanity

Past that was the gorgeous bathroom, which had a tub, walk-in shower, a sink, and a toilet.

The Langley suite bathroom

The Langley suite bathroom

The shower had excellent water pressure and temperature control.

The Langley suite shower

Toiletries were from Hermes, which is nice, but personally I didn’t care for the orange scent much.

The Langley Hermes toiletries

Now, this was a generous upgrade and all things considered I loved the room, though there was one major downside to the room — the complete lack of views.

The room is kind of partly underground (or at least low enough so that you can’t have windows at a reasonable height), so the room lacks windows and natural light.

There’s a frosted window in the back of the room, and realistically you’ll only be able to see part of the building from there by looking up.

The Langley suite window

That’s because this window overlooks the parking lot and dumpster, which is another reason not to get this room. I heard every time they dropped something in the dumpster there, or every time someone left (which fortunately wasn’t too often, since the hotel was quiet).

While I was grateful for the upgrade, I’d highly recommend going for a smaller room or junior suite that’s one level up, both for the views and (hopefully) less noise.

One other note — because of the countryside location there are many areas of the hotel where there’s no phone data. Not only that, but Wi-Fi also doesn’t work from some parts of the hotel, including parts of the gym, the bathroom, etc. It’s not a huge deal, but it seems like something they could get worked out.

The Langley Pool, Gym, And Spa

The Langley has an incredible spa complex, including a gym and pool. This is in the main building, so just past reception you turn right, and then there’s a long hallway leading to the spa.

The Langley walking to the spa

You then have to go down a set of stairs, because the entire spa complex is underground.

The Langley spa

The Langley spa hallways

For one, there’s a beautiful 24/7 gym, with excellent equipment. It would be nice if it had some natural light, but otherwise it’s top notch.

The Langley gym

The Langley gym

The Langley gym

The Langley gym

The Langley gym

The Langley then has locker rooms, as well as an indoor pool with a hot tub, steam room, sauna, etc.

The Langley locker room

The Langley pool

The Langley pool

The Langley hot tub

The Langley pool area

There’s even an outdoor pool, which I imagine would be more enjoyable in summer.

The Langley outdoor pool

The spa also has the Spa Lounge, offering juices, smoothies, light snacks, etc.

The Langley Spa Lounge

I didn’t get any spa treatments, but you can see the available treatments and pricing here.

The Langley Cedar Restaurant (Breakfast)

The Langley’s signature restaurant is Cedar, which is open for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. This is also located past reception. Since my room wasn’t in this area, here’s a picture of the staircase, leading up to many of the guest rooms.

The Langley lobby

The Langley lobby

Breakfast here is served from 7AM until 10:30AM on weekdays, and from 7:30AM until 11AM on weekends.

The restaurant is lovely, and even at breakfast they have white tablecloths. I was the only guest at breakfast, so it was almost awkward since there were two servers.

The Langley Cedar Restaurant

The Langley Cedar Restaurant

The breakfast menu read as follows:

The Marriott breakfast benefit here for elite members is that you get the continental breakfast, which retails for 28GBP (~37USD). You can pay an extra 8GBP to upgrade to the Full English breakfast, though personally I despise English breakfast (I don’t mind the two eggs, but sausage, bacon, black pudding, and baked beans, holds zero appeal to me in the mornings).

So I just had the continental breakfast buffet. The buffet was quite small, but was high quality. The selection included fresh fruit, cold cuts, salmon, cheese, pastries, cheesecake, cereal, yogurt, and some other types of bread.

The Langley breakfast buffet

The Langley breakfast buffet

The Langley breakfast buffet

The Langley breakfast buffet

Coffee or tea (though not specialty drinks) were included as well.

The Langley coffee

The Langley Drawing Room

The Drawing Room is also right off the lobby, and is open for light breakfast, lunch, and afternoon tea. This is a fairly small space, though also has a nice outdoor area, though again, that’s not ideal for winter.

The Langley Drawing Room

The Langley Drawing Room

The Langley Drawing Room outdoor seating

In the afternoon before heading back to the airport I decided to have a snack here. The menu read as follows:

I first had a cappuccino.

The Langley Drawing Room cappuccino

I was trying to eat healthy, since I was flying nonstop for a week, so ordered the garden salad. While it was nicely presented, it was tasteless (then again, it was a garden salad, so…).

The Langley Drawing Room salad

As I said above, I more or less felt like I had the hotel to myself the entire time. The exception was in the Drawing Room, when a mother and daughter showed up.

However, I guess they started reading online reviews of the restaurant after sitting down, and then decided to leave. At least that’s what I overhead.

The Langley Churchill Bar

Behind the Drawing Room is the Churchill Bar, open daily from 8AM until 1AM. I didn’t eat or drink here, but damn it was pretty!

The Langley Churchill Bar

The Langley Churchill Bar

The Langley Bottom Line

This is easily one of the most beautiful and unique Marriott properties I’ve been to. What a treat to have a hotel like this belonging to a major global hotel group, so you can receive the benefits associated with Marriott Bonvoy, all while enjoying a unique experience.

The points value at this hotel is incredible, at least in comparison to the cash rates. This is a Category 5, so just for context, the Sheraton Skyline Heathrow is also a Category 5.

I’m so happy I stayed here, because it provided some nice downtime between all that flying. Given that it’s only 25 minutes from Heathrow, I’d stay here again in a heartbeat in a similar situation.

In summer I could even imagine myself vacationing here. The whole “countryside” hotel concept is something we don’t have much of in the US, but it’s a concept I love.

I didn’t do too much outside, but there are all kinds of countryside activities, from falconry to horseback riding.

I highly recommend staying at The Langley if you have Marriott points to redeem, given what a great value this place is.

Has anyone else stayed at The Langley, or considering staying here?

The following links will direct you to the rates and fees for mentioned American Express Cards. These include: Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant™ American Express® Card (Rates & Fees), and Marriott Bonvoy Business™ American Express® Card (Rates & Fees).

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  1. Looks very nice.

    I’ll do my breakfast/hotel food price rant here.

    I’m assuming all prices are in Pounds.
    $20 for Pancakes?
    $37 for a continental breakfast?
    $34 for a club sandwich or a burger?

    People either got too much money or enjoy throwing money away. Breakfast used to be a cheap meal because something like pancakes cost almost nothing to make but at those prices, you are crazy to spend that much money.

  2. Hi,
    It may have felt like the country but it’s a green corridor just outside Slough which is an industrial town best known for the location if The Office Tv show. Pleased you enjoyed English hospitality, there are a number of uber exclusive hotels near there as it’s close to Heathrow but also to Pinewood and Warner studios where Harry Potter, Star Wars etc are filmed. Happy travels

  3. All the Crowne Plaza hotels I stayed in the past few years had the aromatherapy balm (though now I think about it, it might have been just all the ones in Europe)

  4. With the Heathrow Express you’d have been in Paddington as quickly as you arrived to this hotel in the middle of nowhere.

    I can’t ever imagine staying there no. What a white elephant

  5. +1 to Simon. “The middle of nowhere” 😀 :D. Just in case anyone is expecting a rural retreat; it is in a park, but is about 300 metres off the main road and away from a major built-up area and less than 2 miles away from the M25 – the motorway that circles London.

  6. And that was the bigger and better of the two ‘suites’ offered?

    It is less than four miles from Stoke Park (of Goldfinger, Layer Cake and others fame) and I know where I would rather stay…

  7. This looks a bit tacky to me — a footballers’ wives hotel.

    The pricing is grim even for London (£6 for a side order of baked beans? That’s even before you ask why a supposedly up-market hotel is serving *baked beans*…).

    The decor feels forced, too — it feels as if they’ve tried to cram-in as many “chandeliers” in the restaurant as possible, since quantity is always more important than quality, right.

    And the room they gave you was inexcusable — in a basement, with half-glazing to conceal the bins? That was a downgrade, not an upgrade.

    I’ve stayed in a lot of English country house hotels. This one feels like a money laundering scheme by a Russian drug-dealer.

  8. Looks nice, I’m always a fan of an English/Scottish/Irish Country House hotel. Agree with @the Nice Paul that the “contemporary” touches to the decor are so trendy as to be tacky. That said I would gladly burn an annual free night certificate here before a flight back to the US.

  9. Interesting property
    Thank You for the head up review and pics
    Could be a choice in the right situation and with ones other half.I wouldn’t want to go alone
    In reading other social media sites and if correct apparently the worst rooms are below the main floor or as one poster here put it the basement.
    Another referred to the below main floor rooms as the dungeon with low 6 foot ceilings
    Having said that the photos you tool look really good to me! But you seemed to enjoy it and I know you to be highly discerning! I’ll keep it in mind for certain

  10. Lol. As others have said you were in no way in the middle of the English countryside. You were a stones throw from Slough and Langley surrounded by the M4, M25 and M40 all being less than two miles away.

    For context though this hotel is close to places like Stoke Poges and not too far from Beaconsfield and Gerrards across which is real stockbroker belt into London.

    Next time pop in an Uber for the five min drive to Tesco Extra at Slough to grab some baked beans and you will know you really weren’t in the English countryside at all.

  11. Ben could we have some commentary on what that thing with numbers on the floor and wall in the gym was?

  12. This reminds me that I’m still so annoyed that Marriott devalued the free night benefit of the credit cards by not letting you use it on a cat 5 hotel when it’s 40k points. Pretty much all the cat 5 hotels around me are now 40k almost year round making these certs that much more difficult to use.

  13. @Matthew It’s a (very fancy) electronic agility fitness mat. It’s used for footwork drills, agility drills for changing direction, testing and improving reaction times, etc.

  14. Marriott has a few country house hotels in England, which range from so-so to quite nice. There are of course hundreds of others. This is a category of hotels we don’t have in the USA. Most country house hotels are legitimately 4-star. Many are 5-star and some are even quite regal––you feel as if you’re a duke or whatever. I’m surprised Marriott, Hyatt and Hilton haven’t gotten more of these independent country house hotels into their Luxury Collection, Autograph Collection, Tribute Portfolio, Unbound, and Curio brands.

  15. Very pretty, but too isolated for me. Although I was surprised by gym, not by the size of it but by some of the equipment – there’s a squat rack and benches for barbells! While dumbbells are common, Olympic bar squat racks and benches aren’t in my experience, mainly (I suspect) because of the liability involved.

  16. Lol @TheNicePaul re: Footballers’ wives kind of place – you hit this exactly.

    But, this place is kind of amazing, given the proximity to Heathrow?

  17. This place doesn’t seem like a place I would personally want to stay. First off, if it is actually a decent hotel, when she said that you have a choice between rooms, she should have offered to show you the two options so you could make up your mind. Instead she recommends that you take a room overlooking the wheelie bins. Additionally if they offer junior suites and this was a full suite, one is forced to wonder what those must be like…
    And £28 for a cold breakfast is criminal. And at the end of the day, there is really no need for this hotel.
    If I want to stay near the airport, I can be much closer for much less.
    If I want to spend this much money and be this far from the airport, I can just go into the city and stay somewhere much nicer.
    If I want to go to for a countryside retreat, I will go to the real countryside, not Slough.
    And for those reasons, I am not at all surprised you felt like you had the whole place to yourself.

  18. Random question but I just want to confirm- I know you can’t sign up for both the personal chase and personal Amex Marriott cards. Can you sign up for the Amex business version if you already have the personal chase? 2 free night cert’s would be nice!

  19. Absolutely hilarious calling this the countryside.
    I live in Chelsea and if I cross into Barnes it might feel like I’ve reached Yorkshire but it’s only 5 mins away.
    Likewise this hotel is minutes from Slough, Hayes and Uxbridge and is by no means countryside.
    Such is England, but calling this a county hotel is insanity and honestly shows a lack of culture. Sorry.

  20. Ben, this looks great. Would u recommend staying here versus London city and going up and down if I want to go to London?

  21. Idk what all these boomers are complaining about this hotel but omg its STUNNING.

    luxurious, modern, with a touch of classic & upscale.

    Looks relaxing and beautiful out of the hustle and bustle of Heathrow. Would stay here in a heartbeat.

    Great review Benjamin!

  22. I have been lucky and unlucky with the Marriott luxury collection group of hotels. Generally put, I have been most lucky in Asia in terms of the quality of the hotel and the benefits received, compared to that of the US and Europe. Remember if the hotel is not a common Marriott brand, such as Sheraton, Marriott, Ritz, St. Regis, etc then you should check with the hotel directly regarding the elite benefits. It may change your decisions as to where you actually stay or the value for the money.

  23. @Lucky If you ever have a need to spend a night in Chicago (shenanigans @ O’Hare, etc.), you might check out the instance of the Langley there. Anthony Melchiorri of Travel Channel Hotel Impossible fame did a sub-series of episodes on “very good” (rather than Impossible/Bad) hotels and the Chicago Langley was one of his choices. You could compare that one to this. The Chicago Langley is “downtown” in what used to be called the Sears Tower and is now known as the Willis Tower. The Wikipedia article on the Sears/Willis Tower is massive. Oh, crap, the Chicago hotel I’m referring to is actually the LangHAM rather than LangLEY. The “vibe” of the Langley you were describing is what made me think of the Langham. Regardless, if you’re visiting Chicago for a night, given your interest in 5* hotels, you should try it out. 🙂

  24. ‘Despise’ is an overly strong word and is somewhat offensive to use about the cuisine of another country, I’d say.

  25. Like many, I’ll inquire as to the cost of the Uber. Wild guess at 42 GBP?

    As others have already chimed in, it may feel like you are in the middle of nowhere, but you really arent. You are in a park, and within a couple miles you’ll run into the M25 (ring road around London), and Slough is a very built-up area that is even closer. It is nice, though, that there is a tranquil area so close London. The property does look beautiful. For me, though, I must admit, the pricing on the menu is…shall we say steep? I get its a 5-star so prices will reflect that, but that means a full English breakfast for two is 72 GBP, which (as I am sure your British readership agree) is egregiously expensive. Also, for that kind of money – these days, unless I am told beforehand that there is no wifi, I am expecting wifi to be omnipresent and strong.

    I also am wondering why you would think it would take over an hour to get into London. The Heathrow Express will get you to Paddington in ~15 minutes if you want it — or are you quoting the time it was showing you for an Uber ride into town? I’ve taken the Tube from LHR to Kings Cross countless times which takes an hour.

  26. It’s also worth noting that in the surrounding park a whole 3 minutes walk away there is a lovely cafe overlooking the rhodedendrons that will do you a great full Enlgish breakfast for the princely sum of….. £6.50. And yes, if you despise full English you ARE a godless heathen and should probably not be allowed in the country :D.

  27. Lots of UK based travel blogs have their readers providing poor feedback about the restaurant. Could explain why it was empty.

    Agree with The Nice Paul, the decor borders on Footballers Wives And Girlfriends (WAGs) aspirations to climbing the class ladder, although talking about class is frowned upon in the UK.

    Given the above mentioned scenarios, there are other good country house hotels not far from Heathrow that would merit future reviews for your readers Lucky.

    Your previous blog about hotel choices had a few reader suggestions worth considering.

  28. @DB2020: Talking about class is frowned upon in the UK? Give me a break. All of the tabloids are about class.

    But regardless, if I was looking for a Marriott-affiliated country house hotel, I’d pick the Hanbury Manor Marriott. It’s an hour from Heathrow by car and is more country than Slough.

  29. The Langley, Luxury Collection is about 9 miles by car from Heathrow.

    There are some nice independent, aka non-chain, country house houses, within 10-12 miles of Heathrow, including in or near Windsor. I’d rather stay in Windsor for a day than be isolated at The Langley, especially if I didn’t have a car.

  30. I’m wondering if the aromatherapy balm is something new for Marriott. I had something very similar when I stayed at a Westin in Brisbane, Australia a few weeks ago. I hadn’t seen it before (and didn’t use it because I don’t like scents) but thought it was interesting.

  31. @Keyser–the Langham Chicago is not in the Willis (formerly Sears) Tower. It is in the AMA Plaza (formerly IBM Plaza). The Willis Tower (233 S. Wacker) is in the Loop; AMA Plaza (330 N Wabash) is closer to the magnificent mile. It is a lovely hotel, though.

  32. I gotta chime in with my agreement here: how is a half-underground suite right next to the dumpsters any kind of desirable room or an upgrade? They should be embarrassed to have it as a room at all. Plus, the stairs up followed by stairs down setup not only seems incredibly inconvenient if you have luggage, but is also a glaring accessibility issue (I know, I know, it’s an old mansion, but if they can put in a gym and swimming pool, they can think about accessibility). Breakfast sounds atrociously expensive, but then again, is it any different from a high-end hotel in NYC, where breakfast can retail for $50+?

    Thanks for the review though, lucky. It was nice to get a glimpse of what a place like this is like. We appreciate you taking the detour.

  33. Walking through the rain from the second building to the main one for breakfast and anything else … joy! Very impractical for the dismal English weather, no thanks – once was enough.

  34. @K4
    Your threshold for insanity must be very low!
    Calm down, stop lecturing people and get over yourself.

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