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Discussion in 'Trip Reports' started by tom911, Jul 23, 2012.
Watching Federer vs Murray @ Wimbledon tomorrow ....priceless !
Bumped off my LAX flight using a coach award. Rerouted across the Atlantic in business with a coach connection. Enjoying a burger in the BA F lounge awaiting departure.
Andy Murray beats Roger Federer to win Olympic gold for Great Britain
• British No1 records emphatic 6-2, 6-1, 6-4 victory
• Murray cries tears of exultation after easy win
Fantastic news for TEAM GB!
What was the reroute? From AA coach to BA biz? AA is nice to travel when you can get the bump. Every terminal in LHR should be like T5.
Nice to watch olympic tennis at wimbledon. Any other other venue wouldn't be the same,
I had a BA reroute in business last year BRU-LHR-SFO on an AA coach ticket, upgraded with a systemwide, when the AA flights went mechanical. Not in play this time. Lots of flights on both AA and BA were zeroed out on Sunday. Happy to get out at all, and was prepared to spend the night in London at an interim point if needed.
the last installment, posted from home
Day 8 and Day 9
Saturday was our last full day in London. I checked out of the Hotel Indigo on Tower Hill around 10am and was surprised to find out this award stay included breakfast every morning in the adjoining restaurant. I had only made it down for breakfast one morning and found about this when checking out and trying to pay for the meal ( a full English breakfast is 13 pounds, about $20, while I just had a ham and cheese omelette for 8 pounds). Is that typical with award stays at Indigo? Doubt I would have been down for many other breakfasts, paid for or not, as I generally didn't roll out of bed until sometime after 9 and didn't head out the door until 10, with the exception of the first day of swimming where I headed to the pool around 8.
I used my zone 1-3 Oyster 7-day travel card to work my way out on the Tube to Heathrow. I also have a cash balance on this card which covers the additional fare from zone 3-6 (Heathrow being in 6). Took the escalators adjoining the Heathrow Tube station up to the coach station and hopped the 105 bus out to Bath Road, just 5 minutes away. Left my two bags and right back into central London. I didn't recall the bus stop for the return trip being so far away, as it's a little bit of a hike. The bus stop from the airport adjoins the hotel driveway. This is in the “free zone” so no charge to ride. I was at the Holiday Inn at Bath and Sipson Road.
Arrived back in London and met the Coughlins for lunch at Omega House on Greek Street in SoHo. Had some steak with baby tomatoes and french fries (chips). I had just missed a buffet line which had closed. Not possible to take patio photos due to so many guests about, but I did get photos of two interior rooms. Omega has remodeled this facility, including the patio addition, and will turn it over to the charity that owns the building at the end of the Olympics.
Two of their rooms:
We were just a few blocks from the British Museum so popped in there for an hour, touring mostly the Greek section (reminded us of our visit to the 2004 Olympics in Athens and the visit to the Acropolis).
Back to the Coughlins hotel, the Park Plaza Westminster Bridge, for a break, and then I headed out on my own over to Cotswolds near Picadilly Circus to look for a new day pack. They stock some brands we don't typically see in the U.S., but nothing caught my interest. Also took a look around Fortnum and Mason across the street, a shop that stocks tea, chocolates and biscuits on the ground floor.
Saturday night we watched swimming at Proctor and Gamble's center. After that we headed over to USA House which adjoins the Royal Albert Hall. The swim team was due in at 2300. I had checked the train schedule from South Kensington earlier in the day and the last departure listed on the web site to Heathrow was 2240. By the time I got the Coughlins over to USA House it was right about that time, so I turned right back around and went over to Gloucester Road, about the same distance from USA House, where the Picadilly Line out to Heathrow was still running. Caught the 2300 train. There were later trains listed when I looked at their web site via cell phone once on board. Happy with my decision to leave as I didn't make it to my hotel until just after midnight as it was and needed to be out at 0745. Guess there are some issues with the Tube website.
Sunday morning to the airport was an adventure for the Coughlins. Some bridges and roads were closed due to the marathon, and we just weren't sure a cab to Paddington for Heathrow Express or Heathrow Connect would work. They walked from their hotel to Westminster station to find it closed, even though the Tube site, when checking today's schedule, showed good service from there. They backtracked to Waterloo and got a train there which was taken out of service. Offboarded and waited for another train. Arrived Heathrow about 2 ¼ hours before departure which worked out fine, an overall delay of about 30 minutes for them. We were able to get the 5 pound deposit for their Oyster cards back at the ticket window for the Tube.
Made my way to the Admiral's Club and volunteered, along with two others in our party, for a bump on the LAX flight. They needed five but by the time we got to the gate they needed 3, and then when the doors were getting ready to close only needed two---Ethan, Natalie's husband, and me. Could not confirm any routing until flight was out. Rebooked us on the 1530 DFW flight and then onto SFO, getting in 4 hours later than our original flights. Flight to DFW was in business class which was a great deal for me being that I was on a coach award ticket in this direction. Stopped in the British Airways First Class Lounge before departure for lunch (just had a burger and a cupcake). Very quiet in there with few guests.
Arrived at SFO at 2320 to find my bag was in Chicago. No idea how it got there. It will be delivered to me at home. Caught the 2335 train out to Concord (next to the last one at 2355), picked up my car, and was in the door at 0120.
New photos start here:
Thanks for sharing your experiences and pics while you were here!
Luckily Ticketmaster is not a UK company!
Looks like Natalie made it to Omega House last night:
Natalie Coughlin @NatalieCoughlin
Fun event last night with @MichaelPhelps @LeClos_Swim and Alexander Popov at the Omega House. Such a beautiful space!
Natalie had a cooking segment on the Today Show this morning. They also had her on to cook something in Beijing.
Nice London 2012 trip report Tom911! Great to read you were also at Athens 2004 and Beijing 2008 (me too!)
Here's my London 2012 Olympic Games Opening Weekend trip report:
In London today and took the time to train out to Stratford and the Olympic Park. The pool is in the process of having the bleachers disassembled. Won't miss those as you could not see across to the stands on the other side of the pool and they were just way too high up for good view of the pool itself.
During the 2012 Olympic Games:
Today, taken with my Samsung tablet so I could hold it over a fence and actually see what I was shooting on the screen:
My seat was on the top right side of this photo.