HOTEL OF THE WEEK SYON PARK
THIS hotel has been the country home to the Duke of Northumberland for more than 400 years, according to its website, “and now, as our guest, it becomes your home as well.”
I thought, mistakenly, I was going to a historic country house hotel, but, arriving after dark we pulled into a big car park and drove up to a modern building which, in the bad light, could have passed for a motorway services station. Once inside, however, there was plenty of glamour – cream leather sofas and velvet club chairs — and no sign of the Duke of Northumberland, who still lives at Syon House next door in the park, which is worth a visit, along with its gardens and lake by Capability Brown.
London Syon Park is a Waldorf Astoria hotel and has some very good points – including the unique distinction of being set within the landscape of Syon Park, near the Thames in west London, yet is handy for Heathrow airport seven miles away (and seven miles from Hyde Park).
The Peacock Alley Bar, too, gets a big tick. On a Friday night it had some good beats at a decent volume, smart powder-blue leather stools around a glistening crescentshaped bar and a superb mixologist on hand to dispense original cocktails — the apple crumble exuded the taste of that classic pudding, right down to a shot of homemade vanilla cream at the end.
Our junior suite had toasty underfloor bathroom heating, a double balcony overlooking the garden, a huge flatscreen TV in the sitting room and another housed in a cabinet at the end of the bed.
The Kallima spa offers non- surgical procedures from the clinic of cosmetic surgeon Mr Alex Karidis. I had the hydrafacial – a diagnostic consultation of my skin, followed by a thorough “hoovering up” of dead skin cells (£120). I left feeling totally clean and fresh, and with the airport just a short drive away, the journey was hassle free.
A Presidential Suite: typical of the trademark glamour