Planning a trip to London and looking for somewhere sumptuous to sleep? Haute Living lets you in on the capital’s top five hotels
1 The Berkeley
This much loved local icon is the first word in luxury, the last and most of those in between. The Wilton Place property boasts 214 rooms including 65 suites all of which overlook the park or the charming St Paul’s church. If you’re feeling flash plump for the luxury junior suite – a large open plan room with a divine king sized bed and lounge area complete with its own separate flat screen TV should you, heaven forbid, get bored with The Berkeley. Don’t leave without trying Prêt a Portea – London’s most popular afternoon tea. The quintessentially British ritual has been given a stylish twist; instead of scones expect a collection of canapés, cakes and doll sized taster spoons inspired by the current fashion collections.
2 The Dorchester
Built back in 1931, the first thing you’ll notice on arrival at The Dorchester is the glamorous parking area – there’s always a showy car or two parked outside this plush property. Push through the revolving doors and prepare to be seriously spoilt. An army of smiling staff sweep across marble floors – the hotel is grand without being intimidating – ready to whisk guests off to thrillingly huge accommodation. Bedrooms are impeccable; there are 196 rooms in total plus no fewer than 50 suites and four rooftop suites. Despite being individually designed –no two rooms are alike – all are English to the core so expect lots of floral fabrics.
3 Jumeirah Lowndes
Deciding where to stay in this corner of the capital presents something of a challenge: Knightsbridge is not short of sumptuous five star hotels, including The Berkeley, where you can lay your head. But if you prefer boutique hotels to big, flashy properties, look no further than the Jumeriah Lowndes - an exercise in measured elegance. Set in a serene, leafy square, the ambience at this 87 room property – which opened its doors in 2006 - is suspended somewhere between a very impressive private home and a chic guesthouse. It’s pretty without being cutesy, elegant without being intimidating and compared to its cousin across the road – the Jumeriah Carlton – is smaller, quieter and thus the perfect place to chill out this Easter
4 The Portobello
If you’re looking for a place with personality, then this is it. The Portobello Hotel – which opened back in 1970 – has a bit of rock and roll about it and as such is popular with media folk and models. Indeed Croydon’s most famous export, La Moss, once holed up here and – legend has it – soaked in a bath filled with bubbly. The supermodel stayed in room 16 (the one with the circular bed), one of the so called 12 ‘special rooms’– each of which has a character of its own. The Japanese room (number one) boasts a small sea shell patio, while the cool, colonial room (number two) has a hint of bohemia about it and number six is pure decadence containing as it does a three foot deep, gilded, gold claw bath.
5 The Savoy
The British icon that is The Savoy reopened on the 10/10/10, after a £100 million restoration. The hotel seamlessly blends elements of the original and the new, while the stunning English Edwardian and Art Deco interiors sparkle with timeless elegance and glamour. On the accommodation front, expect 268 guestrooms in addition to nine ‘personality suites’ – styled after some of The Savoy’s most high profile guests – and a newly created two bedroom royal suite is truly a suite fit for a King.