Please sir, do not take photos of our hotel security cameras

Today I took the opportunity of my wife’s need to use a toilet and the proximity of the Hyatt Regency Churchill in London to take photos of the hotel. She was in the toilet a long time and I had several minutes to snap photos.

Hyatt Churchill

Hyatt Regency Churchill London

In the past year, we have realized how London is truly a walkable city for tourists. That is a good feature, considering we are here as tourists during the biggest London Underground workers’ strike in 13 years. They shut the trains down at 6:30 pm this Wednesday evening, July 8, for a 24-hour labor negotiations strike.

Green Park gated

London Green Park Underground Station gated and closed July 8, 2015

I am all for workers’ rights, even if that means Kelley’s feet suffer from the long walks around the city. I am thinking that I should not have bothered crediting £30 to our Oyster Cards yesterday.

We are at the InterContinental Pak Lane and our tourist objective today was a visit to the Wallace Collection Museum. This is a lesser known, but fabulous museum in London with free admission. Think about a wealthy British aristocratic family living in Paris during the time of the French Revolution and the bargain basement prices for art in the 1790s. You can imagine what kind of collectibles were acquired and if you can’t imagine that, then visit the Wallace Museum to see a fabulous collection of art and furniture. This museum is one of the highlights of London.

Hyatt Regency Churchill is about ten minutes walk away from The Wallace Collection museum. The Wallace Collection is a world-class museum that you can spend hours inside admiring one of the finest collections of armor displays, furniture, French porcelain and fine art in Europe.

Wallace Collection Museum

Before reaching the Wallace Museum, we passed by The Churchill, a Hyatt Regency Hotel. I was happy Kelley needed a toilet since that gave me an excuse to visit the Hyatt.

Hyatt Churchill bar

We entered the hotel from the Seymour Street entrance and passed by The Churchill Bar.

As far as I can tell from a quick read of Wikipedia, there is no historical connection between the hotel property and Winston Churchill. It appears to be a marketing name.

Portman Square, across the street from the hotel, has historical significance.

Hyatt Churchill lobby

I see now that I actually photographed a security camera in the corner of the room of the lobby. I did not think I had any hotel cameras in my photos at the time hotel security questioned me about taking photos inside the lobby.

Kelley came out of the toilet to see me talking with hotel security. Her response was to tell me that I should simply say that I write a hotel travel blog. In my experience, that is the quickest way to be prevented from taking hotel photos.

I have been in this business for nearly a decade and when I have been approached and questioned by hotel security about why I am taking hotel photos, mentioning that I write about hotels is almost always given a response that I need to to go through hotel PR channels to get permission for taking photos. I do my best to avoid photographing hotel guests and only gathering images that show the hotel layout for potential guests. Security rarely cares for that rationale.

Churchill hats

Hyatt Regency London – The Churchill millinery display.

Kelley and I are children of working class families. We had the great opportunity of being children in the 1970s in California when higher education was virtually free. We were able to pursue our interests in college. Kelley was an art design major at University of California Davis in the 1980s before studying education to become an elementary school teacher. She studied millinery, the art of designing hats.

She was in the toilet and I was snapping photos of hats that I knew would excite her when she saw the Hyatt Regency Churchill displays.

Hyatt millenary sign

Hyatt Regency Churchill London is celebrating the 150th anniversary of the publication of Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland by Lewis Carroll with a lobby display, ‘Mad as a Hatter’. The hotel restaurant and bar have a promotion for a whimsical Mad Hatter’s Afternoon Tea through September 8, 2015.

Hyatt Mad Hatter

My intent when photographing hotels is pure and clear. I simply want to share what people can expect to find in a hotel. Going through formal hotel channels to meet hotel representatives before arrival is simply cumbersome for me.

Hyatt Churchill reflection

I am not out to bust hotel security or have hotel security bust my balls. I understand and appreciate the role hotel security plays in traveler safety. All I can say is I am a punk journalist and I try to accurately portray what I find in different hotels in a hit and run photo shoot.


My attempt to photograph these images of Churchill are what got me busted in The Churchill Hyatt Regency London. I kept shifting around in the room to find a spot where I could get the reflection of lights off the portraits.

And that was the last photo I was allowed to take in The Churchill London Hotel.

Hyatt Churchill sign

Churchill Hyatt Regency London

Churchill (2)   Hyatt Churchill exterior

Hyatt Regency The Churchill is a hotel located within ten minutes walk of Hyde Park London, Wallace Collection Museum, Selfridge’s Department Store on Oxford Street and U.S. Embassy in London.

Hyatt Regency London – The Churchill Hotel is a Hyatt Gold Passport category 6 hotel at 25,000 points per reward night.

About Ric Garrido

Ric Garrido of Monterey, California started Loyalty Traveler in 2006 for traveler education on hotel and air travel, primarily using frequent flyer and frequent guest loyalty programs for bargain travel. Loyalty Traveler joined BoardingArea.com in 2008.

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  1. I always enjoy reading your blog. Thank you for your efforts. It is very good information.

  2. Don’t feel too bad. I got yelled at by a Hong Kong police officer last week for taking a photo of the U.S. Consulate there. I was across the street. After he yelled at me I crossed over and asked him if he wanted me to delete the photos but he then told me it was ok. Weird since this basically across the street from the Victoria Peak tram with tons of tourists.

    There are SO many cameras in London I’m surprised they care.

  3. Great post, thank you!

    The Wallace Collection is amazing and surprisingly grand and free to view to boot! Thank you for covering this little gem in London.



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