Waterstone's

203-206 Piccadilly
Piccadilly, London
W1J 9HA
Tel: 020 7851 2400 Piccadilly Circus 0.1 miles

The largest bookshop in Europe also houses cafés and the 5th View bar.

Mon-Sat: 9am-10pm
Sun: 12pm-6pm

Waterstone's

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Waterstone's reviews

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Could they do something about the ventilation in there? This store smells of putrid breath and malevolent shoes. Can someone do something about it? It's really off-putting, and I wonder what the use of their armchairs is since one just wants to get one's books and get out of there.

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 by Jane de Chine, 18 Dec 2012
So far this store has been great. I'm yet to visit but they seem to be the only store in England that stock the book I'm looking for. Took a while to get through on the phone, but it's Europe's biggest book store in the heart of London, of course it's going to be stupidly busy. The man who answered was very polite and helpful and I managed to reserve the book I've been looking for, for months, in just a matter of minutes. Absolutely no hassle at all, he even went to make sure there was definitely a copy on the shelf. Will be visiting on Saturday to pick the book up - I can't wait! What could be better than an 8-storey book shop?

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 by Kayleigh.wenham3, 02 Aug 2012
This chain seems not to care about staying in business. Orders got mixed up and misplaced at another Waterstone's branch and staff didn't seem to know what they were doing.
Don't bother phoning the Piccadilly branch, no one ever bothers to answer the phone for enquiries. Perhaps they have them permenantly switched to silent. I find it hard to believe they are that busy at 10.30 on a Monday morning. Why have a contact phone number at all? Atrocious customer service.

Rang the inimitable Watkins bookstore up the road with my enquiry, and not only did they answer the phone promptly, they had the book I was looking for in stock. They are a small independent store and consequently work hard for their business, unlike these large, lackadaisical chain stores, with their ambivelant customer service.

This may be Europe's largest bookstore, but certainly not Europe's best - but then they probably wouldn't care!

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 by morgansgrove9, 28 Jan 2011
I think that this store is really terrific. We were out on New Year's Day 2010. It was freezing and we had been watching the New Year's Day Parade. Went into Costas for coffee - it was packed but we were served and allowed to thaw. The bookshop is vast but went back again later this year and spent over an hour there looking at and choosing books. A wonderful oasis in London to rest and recuperate.

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 by sheilacounsels, 27 May 2010
The managers are really incompetent and rude. I feel sorry for the poor staff that have to work for them. I ordered a book that took over six months to arrive. It was stuck in some warehouse for all that time. Much quicker to just order from Amazon!

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 by victoriagpearson (2 reviews), 02 Apr 2009
No-one answers the phone! It's 8.25pm on a Monday evening, I don't believe all the staff are too busy! Maybe just understaffed? Whatever, where's the customer service?

Useful review?
 by talktomaggiemay, 16 Mar 2009
I just spent 4 hours queuing for the Girls Aloud signing, only to be told 10 yards from the front door that they couldn't be bothered to see anyone else. A disgusting way to treat the people who put them where they are in the first place... Nice store though!

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 by Steveni, 10 Oct 2008
I queued for about 3 hours at Waterstone's in Piccadily on 29th August for the book signing by Michael Stipe and David Bellisle... Believe me, it was worth it. The experience was enhanced by the fantastic attitude of the Waterstone's staff. They were helpful, friendly and full of good humour throughout the event, from the (very long) queue to the actual signing itself. They were happy to take our photo for us (3 times on 3 different cameras!) and absolutely nothing was too much trouble. I hope they get to read this... thanks Waterstone's!

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 by imitationoflife, 02 Sep 2008
I've phoned the Picadilly store from Ireland on several occasions, and have found the young lady manageress and the others who answered my other calls to be courteous and helpful. Waterstone's staff have a difficult job at the best of times but they respond to different dialects, accents and cultures with a comforting ease.

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 by Bookish, 25 Apr 2008
Further to the occasional remarks concerning this store's seeming inability to answer their phones within a reasonable amount of time, I thought I'd register here and tell the world that I am currently 24 minutes into my attempt to discover whether they have the book I'm after. Two calls timed out (after 7 minutes), one was poorly connected, and two further calls to the switchboard to try and get help. They're phoning me back... Oh - excuse me.

Aaaah, they haven't got it. Bugger.

It is a great bookshop though. (Rating is for phone answering skills.)

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 by Pond, 14 Apr 2008
It's not surprising the phone was not answered at 9.20am (FAO frustrated and frustrated2)... central London is barely open at all at this early hour (most shops open between 10 and 11am). Staff would be attending to the customers that are in store (priority) and perhaps dealing with other phone queries - this applies throughout the day too. The staff are dedicated, very helpful and polite, and when not seeing to customers in store, will happily answer the phone.

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 by play nice, 17 Feb 2008
An absolutely massive store, with a really nice Costa's hidden away downstairs. Perfect place to go to get out of the rain!

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 by charlie4, 07 Feb 2008
I was in desperate need of a book for my assignment. Thanks to Waterstones I got hold of it, as they had it in stock. I had called 6 libraries and 5 bookshops which had said that they would only have it in in the next 6 days (too late for my purposes).

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 by sultik, 03 Feb 2008
For Europe's largest bookstore one would expect someone to answer the phone at 9.20 am.

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 by frustrated2, 15 Jan 2008
I have just phoned up and found out in less than 5 minutes that they have the book I wanted. Excellent. I look forward to going there later on today.

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 by lmcgregor, 12 Dec 2007
No reply after 5 minutes on the phone. Unable to tell via the website if the book I wanted was in stock.

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 by frustrated, 18 Oct 2007
Just called them to see if they stocked a certain book. When no one answered the line to the department I wanted, the person I spoke to offered to walk up there to check. His colleague then called me straight back. Impressive service... And a very nice bar to meet in too, with a view to the London Eye.

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 by N.Bell, 20 Sep 2007
Great place. Great staff. One of the staff (I think his name was Angelo) spent almost a full ten minutes looking around the shop for a book I wanted as a birthday gift. Highly recommended!

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 by Harriet D'Marche, 19 Jun 2007
A great place to find and read books, and meet in the cafes and bars. A haven in central London.

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 by cleverdick, 01 Jun 2007
Too much Da Vinci Code, too much pulp fiction in the '3 for 2'.

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 by Anonymous, 22 May 2006


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