53 Park Lane, W1K 1QA hotel. qantas.com.au/thedorchesterlondon
The shiny Ferraris, Lotuses and Aston Martins in the forecourt hint at the decadence of this prestigious hotel that opened in 1931 and has hosted everyone from Eisenhower to Elizabeth Taylor. Radiant floral displays curated by in-house florist Philip Hammond are a sweetscented welcome as you sashay through the marble lobby, while the 250 rooms, boosted by regular face lifts, are light and airy, with antique furniture, Bang & Olufsen electronics and bathtubs said to be the deepest of any London hotel.
Business facilities There’s a business suite with computers and printing facilities, plus 10 events spaces, including a 1000-capacity ballroom with AV equipment and the Park Suite, where the Duke of Edinburgh held his stag night in 1947. Wi-fi Complimentary throughout.
Food and drink The opulent orange-hued Promenade lounge serves afternoon tea, while the rear oval bar does champagne and oysters. Other fine-dining options are Alain Ducasse’s three-Michelinstarred French restaurant; The Grill’s Sunday roasts and sweet soufflés; and Cantonese gem China Tang.
Fitness and wellbeing The wellequipped gym is open 24 hours. No pool but there’s a spa with a hair salon, barber shop, nail bar and aromatherapy treatments.
Run route Take the pedestrian subway under Park Lane into Hyde Park. A circuit of the park and neighbouring Kensington Gardens is seven kilometres.
Coffee nearby The Dorchester has an artisanal coffee shop, Parcafé, but Élan café (elancafe.co.uk), diagonally opposite the hotel, is best for celebrity-spotting.
(From top) Salon Park Lane, Alain Ducasse at The Dorchester; one of The Curtain’s Loft Terrace Rooms