The five-star Corninthia Hotel London was given "undue prominence" in an edition of The X Factor which was broadcast by ITV on 6 October last year, according to media regulator Ofcom.
Ofcom said that there was "insufficient editorial justification for the repeated references to the hotel during the programme." As a result, it judged that the cumulative effect of the references resulted in the programme as a whole giving "undue prominence" to the hotel".
The programme showed the eventually winner of the show, James Arthur, arriving at the hotel - at which the hotel's name was seen displayed above either side of the door - and exclaim: "It's absolutely amazing hereâ¦I've never really seen anything like it to be honest." Meanwhile, his fellow contestant Rylan Clark was seen exploring the bedroom and saying: "Oh my god James, it's massive!" and "There's a phone in the toilet!".
As well as repeated shots of the contestants arriving at the hotel - with the Corinthia name clearly on show - the band Union J was shown checking in and the receptionist said: "Welcome to the Corinthia Hotel London."
Ofcom noted that the licensee - Channel Television, which is a subsidiary of ITV - had confirmed that the production company had entered into a contract with the hotel and paid the hotel a reduced rate to provide rooms and services, However, the contract did not guarantee the inclusion of any references to the hotel in any of the episodes of The X Factor.
Matthew Dixon, general manager of the Corinthia, said the hotel has entered a commercial agreement with ITV and had no control over how many times the property had received a mention.
"We are always grateful for any good exposure of the hotel - from our beautiful penthouse suites a to the afternoon tea service," he explained. "Coverage on a prime time UK TV programme obviously increases our exposure in a very important market."