The Principal York City Centre Hotel Review

The Principal is a relatively large 4-star luxury hotel located next to the train station in the centre of York. It is on the main outskirts of the city with restaurants, bars, shops and attractions just a short walk away.

It is a great base for exploring and it has been recently renovated by award-winning interior architects Goddard Littlefair. It has a modern, yet Victorian feel to the hotel and we especially loved the roomy and comfy bar area which was a lovely space to sit and spend some time. The hotel has 155 bedrooms and there is free Wi-Fi throughout.

The Principal Hotel York Review

We chose to drive into York as it’s not easy for us to get a train from where we live. My Mum arrived by train which was great for her as it really is right next to the train station. We found a parking space OK although it could perhaps do with a few more spaces, there was a charge to park of £15 for 24 hours.

The exterior and the interior oozes Victorian grandeur while feeling modern and comfortable. The hotel was previously known as the Royal and it has been welcoming guests since 1878. It was majorly refurbished in 2016 and the hotel felt clean and spacious.

The Principal Hotel York Review
The Principal Hotel York

The reception area and some of the tables in the bar benefit from views of York Minster. They have gardens where you can enjoy food and drinks in the warmer months. The interior is as good as any 5-star hotel with chandeliers, comfy seating areas and spectacular staircases.

The garden room is where you can enjoy a drink and even a wonderful afternoon tea, they even have child portions. This was our favourite part of the hotel and it has a really high ceiling and fabulous interiors. There were even some complimentary games so you can while away the hours.

The Principal Hotel York Review
The Principal York City Centre Hotel Review

My son was made to feel very welcome at the hotel. We were approached by a member of staff at one point to ask if we were enjoying our stay. We had at the time been waiting for a while for our drinks. He immediately went himself to get our drinks. He then took my son to find a sticker book, This was a lovely souvenir as it featured the hotel in it. This was all a really nice touch and again more 5 star standard than 4 star.

The Principal Hotel York Review

The hotel did have lifts but we loved the stairs so much we rarely used them. We would often see members of staff around the hotel and they were always really friendly.

The Principal York City Centre Hotel Review

My son and I were sharing a superior twin room. It really did have the wow factor. Our single beds were more adult size than child-sized and I slept really well. There was even room for my son’s soft toys!

Our room was neutral but modern and it had some really nice touches. There was a little writing area built into the desk plus a laptop-sized safe. We had a fridge with complimentary water and fresh milk. We even had a snack box filled with chocolate, crisps and drink sachets.

Our room even had dressing gowns, slippers, an iron and board, TV, hairdryer, more than enough hangers and there was even an umbrella in our wardrobe.

The Principal York City Centre Hotel Review
The Principal York City Centre Hotel Review
The Principal York City Centre Hotel Review

My son was especially happy with the complimentary sweet treats that we’d been left.

The Principal Hotel York
The Principal York City Centre Hotel Review

The shower room was quite large for a hotel and there was a good-sized shower. The towels were lovely and soft and there were a few complimentary items such as shower gel and shampoo.

The Principal York City Centre Hotel Review

The hotel also has a fully equipped gym, a 13-metre swimming pool, jacuzzi and steam room. You can also book spa treatments. The staircase down to the gym is lined with wonderful Victorian tiles.

The Refectory Kitchen and Terrace is where you will have your breakfast. This was a buffet with hot and cold options. There was cereals, fresh fruit, toast and pastries. Plus sausages, bacon, two types of eggs, tomatoes, mushrooms, beans and even porridge.

The Principal Hotel York
The Principal Hotel Yorkv
The Principal Hotel York

They also open for meal times and there is an outdoor terrace for warmer days. We ate there one evening and the steak was simply wonderful. You can also eat in the hotel’s bar where they serve classic pub-style food.

The Principal Hotel York

Although it is a 4-star hotel I struggled to understand why it isn’t 5 star. The interior and facilities are excellent and the rooms are top-notch. All I know is that the prices are cheaper than that of the local 5-star hotel, The Grand.

The Principal Hotel FAQ & Further Information

Address: Station Rd, York YO24 1AAv, North Yorkshire. Phone: 01904 653681

Category – Hotel – Suitable for all ages.

What are the prices?

A standard room costs around £130 a night, superior rooms around £150 a night and suites around £220 a night. Breakfast costs £15.95, there is the possibility of having this included and then you pay slightly less.

What are the main facilities and things to do?

4 star hotel with a gym, pool, spa, lovely bar area, restaurant and clean modern rooms in a Victorian style.

Is there food available?

There is a restaurant serving hot and cold food and drinks, plus bar meals and afternoon tea.

Is there parking?

There is parking, charges apply.

Are they dog friendly?

Dogs are welcome in some of their rooms.

Are they accessible?

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