Hotel Of The Fortnight: The Portobello

Looking for a London hotel that combines comfort and luxury with personality? The Portobello Hotel should fit the bill. The Notting Hill property – which opened back in 1970 – oozes rock and roll.

Case in point? Kate Moss once holed up here with then beaux Johnny Depp, and – legend has it – enjoyed a bath filled with bubbly. Mossy 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. Elsewhere number six is pure decadence containing as it does a three foot deep, gilded, gold claw bath.


Meanwhile music maestro, Robbie Williams, reportedly climbed up the steps to clamber into the huge four-poster bed that hails from Hampton Court Palace in room 13. The troubled singer’s former duet partner – pop princess, Kylie Minogue – is another of The Portobello’s rumoured high profile past guests. We say rumoured because staff somewhat maddeningly refuse to either confirm or deny the celeb quota.

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The remaining 12 ‘regular’ rooms (five doubles, two twins and five singles) aren’t as remarkable as the special suites, but nonetheless still elate. Haute Time has stayed in number six and anyone following in our footsteps can expect some serious style. Old and new are blended effortless together and consequently curved sofas (tailored made to fit each room) towering four poster beds, Victorian-esque bath tubs and showers, beautiful antique wardrobes and writing bureaus share space with Bang and Olufsen interactive televisions.




Beyond the bedrooms, there’s the lobby where you’ll find an impressive grandfather clock and a small but perfectly formed drawing room that harks back to a bygone era (you’ll half expect to be joined in the drawing room by F Scott Fitzgerald). This calm sanctuary is the place to take breakfast with the morning papers. When it comes to lunch and dinner, The Portobello tends to send guests to dine at the institution that is Julie’s Restaurant & Champagne Bar. A pleasant 10 minute stroll away, this thespian favourite serves up excellent European fare in an ultra romantic leafy setting, but will also deliver to your door should you want to linger a little longer in your room. We wouldn’t blame you.