To paraphrase the 18th century writer Samuel Johnson: the person who is tired of London is tired of life. The history and culture of London has been woven into the fabric of our lives through stories, board games, movies, and television shows. Visiting London almost feels like coming home. From the magnificent spectacle of the river Thames, spread out before you as you stand on Westminster Bridge, to the glass and steel towers, five-star hotels and upmarket apartment complexes of the Docklands, everywhere you go in London will seem somehow familiar. Discretion and service have always been the bywords of London hospitality. From the luxury hotels along Park Lane and the lavish Georgian apartments of Pimlico, to the illustrious city-centre hotels such as Claridges, the Savoy and The Ritz, London presents such an amazing variety of accommodation, dining, history and culture that this most wonderful of cities is almost like visiting a country in itself. Take a black cab, ride the underground, see the Queen, grab a pint. Samuel Johnson wasn’t quite right: it is impossible to get tired of London.
The Soho Hotel is a luxury hotel located in the centre of London. This puts you within walking distance of the British Museum, the National Gallery, the West End, and the Royal Opera House. It also means that all the dining options of Soho and Covent Garden, Peruvian, Italian and Asian open up to you.
Each of the rooms and suites at The Soho Hotel has been styled individually by Creative Director and owner Kit Kemp with a modern English style. All have floor to ceiling windows along with flat-screen TV’s, Bluetooth Bose units and wi-fi. The bathrooms are finished in either granite or marble paired with oak.
The Refuel Bar and Restaurant serves all three meals as well as afternoon tea. At all times, its focus is on fresh, seasonal produce. With its meals, it also offers a global wine list as well as a wide range of cocktails. There’s also a range of options for private dining.
Soholistic offers a whole range of beauty treatments including massages and body treatments. The gym will also help you burn off any calories. Kit Kemp also designed the event rooms which can be adapted for all kinds of events. There’s also a dedicated wedding planner team to plan your wonderful day for up to 30 guests.
Brown’s Hotel, a Rocco Forte Hotel is a high end hotel in Mayfair. This puts it within walking distance of Buckingham Palace and comfortable driving distance from the West End, the Royal Albert Hall, the British Museum, and many more. The hotel is also surrounded by restaurants serving Cantonese, Japanese and Italian food.
The rooms feature timeless design with neutral colours, dark wood and deep red upholstery on the armchairs. In the suites, you can find antiques paired with contemporary art. You’ll also have access to wi-fi, a safe and interactive entertainment options. Also, in the bathrooms, you can find Irene Forte skincare toiletries.
At Charlie’s by Adam Byatt you can eat contemporary British food with French, Italian and Spanish influences. Everything is made with local ingredients too. Or if you’re relaxing in the afternoon, you could have afternoon tea in the Drawing Room, just like Queen Victoria did. You can enjoy pastries or little sandwiches with your tea.
Rocco Forte Wellness offers a wide range of care options including massage, body treatments and gym with a personal trainer. If you’re arranging work meetings, then there are six meeting rooms available. Or if you’re planning wedding celebrations, then The Clarendon Room can seat 70 guests in beautiful Victorian surroundings.
The Montcalm at The Brewery London City is a luxe hotel in London. It’s next door to The Barbican where you can find exhibitions, theatre, music and more. Just beyond The Barbican, you can find the remains of the Roman city walls. The nearby Shoreditch in particular offers a wide range of restaurants.
A grade II listed Georgian building, The Montcalm offers luxurious rooms and suites. They can offer four poster beds in dark wood with matching selected dark furniture. In the bathrooms, you’ll find toiletries from the French luxury brand Hermès and Gessi rain showers. You’ll also benefit from wi-fi, a work desk and even a personal butler.
The Chiswell Street Dining Rooms restaurant offers dining in the wood panelled Whitbread Brewery’s original 18th century home. The Jugged Hare restaurant takes its name from a traditional English recipe and offers seasonal British dishes. But if you’ve already eaten then Afternoon Tea at the City offers little treats alongside tea.
The Montcalm offers a range of rooms for events and meetings of all kinds. The Georgian wood panelled walls and high ceilings can also provide an elegant touch to your wedding celebrations. If you’re looking to pamper yourself too, then there are wellness options provided by Beauty & Melody.
The Savoy is an opulent hotel in the heart of London. It’s perfectly positioned to enjoy the West End and the Royal Opera House. Upriver are St Paul’s Cathedral and the Tower of London, both of which you could take a riverboat to reach. There are also countless dining options on either side of the river.
The Savoy’s rooms and suites pair their great views of the River Thames and the city with Edwardian or Art Deco design. You could enjoy duck feather pillows, internet connections and in-room controlled air conditioning. The Royal Suite also offers airport transfers, a butler and more of the classic luxury the Savoy is famous for.
The River Restaurant by Gordon Ramsay is great for fish lovers. There’s also the Savoy Grill by Gordon Ramsay which has played host to Winston Churchill and Oscar Wilde. The striking black and gold Beaufort Bar offers a great range of champagne and cocktails. Or, if you prefer your cocktails with an American touch, there’s the American Bar.
Beauty & Fitness at The Savoy offers a pool, sauna, gym, and a range of health and beauty treatments. If you’re celebrating your wedding, then there’s a range of rooms including Gondoliers with beautiful Venetian design. If you’re planning a corporate event, then the Savoy’s surroundings will give them a new dimension.
The Langham is a 5 star hotel in the heart of London, positioned between Marylebone, Fitzrovia, Soho, and Mayfair. This means that you’re a short journey from The Wallace Collection, Regent’s Park, the British Museum, the West End, and more. It also means that you’ll have your pick of dining options from all over the world.
The rooms feature Victorian inspirations to their design, especially in the Portland, Infinity and Sterling suites. Each room also comes with complimentary touches which can include wi-fi, media hubs, Nespresso, Langham Club privileges, and even butler services. The bathrooms feature marble bathrooms and separate showers.
If you’re dining in, then you can enjoy European dishes in Roux at the Landau or even Private Dining by Roux. The Artesian is the place to go for cocktails and there’s also a British pub called The Wigmore. The Langham Afternoon Tea offers, well, afternoon tea complete with biscuits for that Victorian afternoon touch.
There’s a gym and 16 metre swimming pool to help work off the biscuits with wellness options at Chuan Body + Soul including, massages and facials. If you’re planning a wedding, then The Langham has select partners such as photographers and florists who they know can be depended upon. There are also lots of options for other events.
Shangri-La is an opulent hotel in London’s famous Shard. Located in Southwark, the hotel is a short walk from the delicious food of Borough Market. Just across the river Thames is the Tower of London which you can reach via London Bridge. There are also many restaurants both on the south side of the river and the north.
The Shangri-La’s rooms make the most of its location with floor to ceiling windows, even in the bathrooms as you’re not overlooked. The rooms feature contemporary design with Chinoiserie touches. You’ll find luxury Frette linens on the beds, entertainment options and perhaps even a telescope with a skyline guide.
The TĪNG restaurant blends Asian and British contemporary cuisine using both local and seasonal ingredients. Bar 31 offers a relaxing place for a drink and bites prepared from ingredients sourced from Borough Market. GONG is a great place for evening drinks or a cocktail while the Sky Lounge offers Asian inspired brunch on Sundays.
There’s a sauna, gym and infinity pool with incredible views. You can also enjoy The Sky High Retreat with aromatherapy and massages. If you have a small corporate gathering or seminar, then the Shangri-La can accommodate you. If you’re planning a wedding, then up to 100 guests can be accommodated for your celebrations.
The Berkeley is a luxury hotel in a perfect location for everything in London. Buckingham Palace is within walking distance as is Harrods. Westminster Abbey and The Natural History Museum are all about a 10 minute drive. If you’re eating out, then you can find English pubs, Italian and Russian restaurants, and cocktail bars.
The Berkeley’s most luxurious rooms feature design by André Fu or Helen Green Design. Whichever you choose, you’re assured of timeless luxury. You’ll find pale, neutral colours with beautiful Italian marble in the bathroom. Alongside this, you’ll find fresh flowers and champagne waiting for you, as well as in-room entertainment options.
The Collins Room serves all meals in light, contemporary surroundings. The Berkeley Bar and Terrace offers wines from all over the world alongside small bites. Marcus offers contemporary British cuisine in up to seven courses. The Blue Bar is perfect for cocktail lovers. Alongside all these options are seasonal pop-up options.
The Bamford Wellness Spa offers a range of pampering options alongside a gym, yoga and Pilates. The Berkeley has presentation equipment and sound systems for conferences. The Berkeley is also licensed to hold wedding ceremonies and civil partnerships, and their contact list can help you find florists as well as anything else needed to make your day perfect.
The Four Seasons Hotel at Ten Trinity Square has a strong claim to being in the heart of London. Redevelopment discovered artefacts spanning human history including a flint knife that could date to 8500 BC. The Four Seasons also faces The Tower of London which contains the oldest intact building in London. Interior design by Martin Kemp has meticulously layered contemporary design upon timeless style.
With something of an underground atmosphere, this luxury hotel, complete with marble floors in the bathrooms, can keep the bustle of city life at bay while still ensuring that contemporary London is on your doorstep. If you’re staying in you can enjoy private wine tasting, offering you the opportunity to select a great wine to go with a meal prepared by a personal chef.
You can also enjoy the beauty treatments, hairstyling services, keep fit in the pool, or head to one of the two ballrooms. Or, if you’re ready to enjoy London, you could start with the history of The Tower of London. From there, it’s a short walk to a riverboat tier from which you can enjoy many of the jewels of London such as Shakespeare’s Globe, Westminster Abbey and Tate Britain.
Claridge’s began its journey to becoming a luxury hotel in 1812. As early as 1860, its reputation as a second home for royalty began when Empress Eugenie of France (wife of Emperor Napoleon III) entertained Queen Victoria here. The well-appointed Empress Eugenie suite at Claridge’s pays homage to this heritage.
Claridge’s is renowned for its art deco style following a tasteful redesign in the 1920s. Original examples of this transformation remain today, a beautiful example being the glass screens in the foyer and reading room. And every year their Christmas tree becomes the subject of countless photos. Airport transfer, concierge and butler services are available to free you to enjoy London.
If work calls, you can take advantage of the beautiful office facilities of The Map Room. When you can escape work, you could entertain family or friends in the Foyer Private Dining Room designed to recall the 1920s Claridge’s Foyer. Or if you want to go out, Claridge’s is perfectly situated in London’s Mayfair, halfway between Hyde Park and Regent Street. This makes Claridge’s an elegant place from which to begin exploring London’s incredible culture. The Royal Opera House, the Theatre Royal, Buckingham Palace, and Westminster Abbey are all close at hand.
The Dorchester opened in 1931. Named after the Earl of Dorchester, who bought a house on the location of the renowned luxury hotel, ‘The Dorch’ was created to fulfil Robert McAlpine’s vision of the perfect hotel. With a history of affluent luxury, Mayfair in London is the perfect place to realise that vision. The Dorchester’s style is a timeless one embedded in its inter-war roots.
It’s perhaps The Promenade that embodies this best of all. Longer than the nearby Nelson’s Column is tall, The Promenade is a lounge lined with columns that create a beautiful environment in which to take afternoon tea. The Dorchester offers a butler and the expertise of its concierges. You can enjoy the spa, delicious food with global inspirations, or combine the two in ‘The Spatisserie’.
If you’re going to the theatre in the evening, you could leave your children safe with one of the hotel’s qualified babysitters and head out in a chauffeur-driven, classic car. Mayfair has maintained its reputation for art and culture for over 200 years. The Royal Academy, The National Gallery and the theatres of the West End are all close at hand. Other cultural highlights such as the British Museum are also easily accessible.
Once you’ve found your perfect luxury hotel, it’s time to plan your London trip. London has so much to offer that it can feel overwhelming. Therefore, to help you have an unforgettable experience, we’re sharing eight of the most iconic and unique things to do in London town.
Borough Market is one of the oldest food markets in London and is renowned for its vast selection of artisan food, British meat, and organic produce. You’ll find the enormous market under the railway lines of London Bridge. Here you can taste various cheeses, bread, and wine and fill your belly with traditional English and international street food. Along with high-quality food and drink, the atmosphere is always incredible here.
Camden town is one of London’s most loved areas. Although it’s often packed with tourists, no London trip is complete without a visit to Camden. This quirky neighbourhood is a live music hub and a cultural mecca. The vibrant, diverse town is full of punk clothing shops, old-school pubs, a large food market, and an iconic canal. Whatever time you visit, you are bound to see some wild and wacky sights here!
One of the best ways to experience British culture is to visit a traditional pub. You’ll have no trouble finding one in London as there is pretty much a pub on every street. Even so, look for a pub that is frequented by locals rather than tourists. For example, check out The George Inn on Borough High Street or The Lamb & Flag in Covent Garden. If you’re in town on a Sunday, be sure to order a traditional Sunday roast with your pint, too.
London’s West End musicals are world-famous, and with almost 40 theatres in the city, there is a show for everyone. Theatre shows range from international favourites like Mamma Mia and The Lion King to independent comedy shows showcasing the best of British humour.
Harrods in Knightsbridge is the UK’s most luxurious department store and a must-see for first-timers in London. The giant store has seven floors with a staggering 330 departments, selling everything from fashion to food to fine jewellery. You can easily spend a whole afternoon here and find some impressive gifts for friends and family. Plus, if you’re visiting around Christmas, Harrods becomes a magical wonderland during this time!
If you’re a fan of Britain’s most famous movie series, don’t miss the chance to see where the magic happened at Warner Bros. Studio. As well as stepping foot onto the iconic sets, you’ll discover some of the special effects used in the movies and touch the character’s costumes.
As you know, brits love their tea and biscuits, and an ideal way to honour this English tradition is with afternoon tea. This ceremonial meal takes place in the late afternoon. It consists of dainty sandwiches, scones with clotted cream and jam, and a selection of cakes; all washed down with bottomless tea. Many of the city’s luxurious restaurants, cafes, and hotels offer afternoon tea, including one of my favourites, Fortnum and Mason.
Trying to see all of London’s sights on foot can quickly become tiring. However, as many of the top attractions are along the waterfront, a time-saving and relaxing way to see the city is by taking a river cruise. You’ll spot the Tower of London, Tower Bridge, Tate Modern, Big Ben, the London Eye, and much more. There are many different tours to choose from, including sunset dinner cruises.