Mayfair’s boutique hotels
Boutique hotels in one of London’s most exclusive vicinities - Mayfair
Mayfair has maintained its status as one of London’s most elite zones since before World War II. After the War, it did lose some of its allure, only to regain it around the mid-1990s, thanks to refurbishment of the buildings here. Ironically, this sophisticated area gets its name from “May Fair” that took place from 1686 to 1764, where the peasant class enjoyed all sorts of dance and music. The fair was later moved to Fair Field in Bow because the affluent residents felt it diminished the appeal of the neighbourhood.
Over the years, Mayfair has evolved from being just an expensive collection of residential properties to including offices by noteworthy brands, high fashion stores, Michelin-starred restaurants and luxury hotels. It covers the entire area between Hyde Park Corner, Marble Arch, Oxford Circus, Piccadilly Circus and Green Park.
While five-star properties at Mayfair continue to attract leisure and business travellers alike, a number of boutique hotels have upped the charm of this uptown area. With innovations in their offerings, these boutique hotels break from conventional hospitality concepts and create a fresh travel experience for their guests.
Here are five boutique hotels you could consider as options in London’s exclusive postcode.
45 PARK LANE
“You’re our guest, not a room number,” reads the 45 Park Lane hotel’s website elaborating on its unique butler service. The hotel assigns a “host” for every room who acts as a round the clock concierge and bank of knowledge on London.
Part of Dorchester Collection, a luxury hotel operator, 45 Park Lane has an interesting backstory. About five decades ago, the building housed The Playboy Club and was nicknamed “the hutch on the park” – a to-be-seen-in hangout in the ‘60s for those with deep pockets. On acquiring the property, Dorchester Collection designed the hotel to replicate a cosy house. Every now and then it showcases works by modern artists, also on sale, at any of its inhouse venues.
Each of the 45 rooms and suites have “a 1920s heart, dipped in ultimate comfort”, and overlooks Hyde Park.
CUT, its in-house American restaurant is popular for its range of steaks amongst other offerings. The menu created by chef Wolfgang Puck also includes dishes like pan-roasted lobster, burgers and risotto. Bar 45 is the property’s chic drinking hole, which serves seasonal hand-crafted cocktails and “ROUGH CUTS” – a bar menu of finger foods like Wagyu sliders, Dorset crab rolls and grilled Steak fries.
A one-night stay in June is upwards of £750/`70,000. dorchestercollection.com
ARTIST RESIDENCE LONDON
As the name suggests, Artist Residence has a high design quotient. It is one of the five properties in England by the chain, which describes itself as “eclectic luxury”. This hotel is situated on Cambridge Street near Mayfair in Pimlico. Breaking away from the conventional interiors of most hotels, Artist Residence London embraces abstract design sensibilities – think, old style iron beds with clean, straight lines, otherwise plain wall mirrors with one distinctive feature, and washbasins with separate hot and cold knobs for the faucet.
It all started in 2008 when Justin and Charlotte Salisbury invited artists to decorate rooms in return for boarding at their bed and breakfast in Brighton. Hundreds of artists transformed the place with praiseworthy works and Artist Residence was born as a concept hotel brand. In 2014, they brought their chain to London.
This stylish property has just ten rooms (with free wifi and a Nespresso coffee machine), a cocktail bar and an all-day dining restaurant. Each room is uniquely
designed with contemporary urban, graphic or street art on all or any of the walls, ceilings, rustic wooden floors, and continues in its vintage furnishings.
The highlight of the hotel is its soughtafter Clarendon Cocktail Cellar that was once an old Victorian pub in 1872. Considered quite the gem in London’s exclusive nightlife scene, it features exposed brick walls, red bar stools and dim lighting. Its in-house restaurant, the Cambridge Street Kitchen has a transitional seasonal menu. The head chef curates new fusion dishes from available local produce.
A one-night stay in June is upwards of £245/`22,865. artistresidence.co.uk
The debut hotel of Chris Corbin and Jeremy King, restaurateurs who own the Wolseley, the Delaunay and other gourmet eateries in London, The Beaumont opened in 2014. Accommodation at the 73-key property includes three, two and four room, studio and suite categories respectively.
The Art Deco-styled rooms are punctuated with black and white photographs, original paintings, antiques and books. Windows overlook Mayfair or the garden court. The plush marble bathrooms are fitted with floor heating.
Recommended is the “ROOM” suite (£1,278/`1,19,299 onwards per night), which is in a “giant semi-abstract” sculpture by Antony Gormley. It is designed as a dark, mysterious wood-panelled space for guests to achieve a meditative state of tranquillity.
Included in the room rates, across all accommodation categories are tea, coffee, juices and baked goods in The Cub Room, which is The Beaumont’s lounge bar. This is in addition to the free in-room minibar that excludes alcoholic beverages. A vintage Daimler is available on request for free drop-offs within Mayfair.
Try the recommended lobster à la Russe or New York hot dogs at The Colony Grill or enjoy a bourbon at The American Bar. The white marble Art Deco spa offers Hamam treatments, in addition to a steam and sauna. The gym is open round the clock. The Lotus Room is its glamorous space for intimate events for up to 60 people.
A one-night stay in June is upwards of £495/`46,206. beaumont.com
The Lanesborough is a part of the Oetker Collection, a German hospitality company that owns ten luxury hotels. Following a refurbishment project, the 93-key hotel relaunched in 2015.
Rooms and suites are decorated in beautiful pastels and colonial style furnishings. Each room has an entrance
As the name suggests, Artist Residence has a high design quotient. It is one of the five properties in England by the chain, which describes itself as “eclectic luxury”
foyer for added privacy, writing desk, separate seating area and under oor heating in the bathrooms. e in-room tablet can be used for housekeeping, room service, restaurant reservations and to browse the internet. On request, complimentary tea or co ee is served with the wakeup call.
e hotel tailors three-day itineraries for guests (on request), which includes the Tower of London, St. Katherine Docks, Regent Park’s open-air theatre, Carnaby Street, Soho and ends with a performance at the Royal Albert Hall and dinner at the hotel’s Michelin-star restaurant Celeste.
At Celeste, special menus paired with bespoke wines are the norm. It is managed by four Michelin-starred executive chef Florian Favario and three Michelin-starred chef Eric Frechon. e a ernoon tea here, though extravagant is worth the experience with so piano playing in the background of e Lanesborough’s rich ambience.
Guests can also relax with beauty and wellness treatments at its Club and Spa. If visiting on business, the seven event rooms are o ered for either a cocktail
The a ernoon tea here, though extravagant is worth the experience with so piano playing in the background of The Lanesborough’s rich ambience
gathering, private sit-down dinner or a boardroom meeting.
A one-night stay in June is upwards of £650/`60,660. oetkercollection.com
THE LEONARD BOUTIQUE HOTEL
Situated in the heart of London’s luxury shopping locality in Marble Arch, it enjoys scenic views of Hyde Park. Accommodation in the 49-key Leonard Hotel ranges from single and double rooms, to spacious suites and family rooms. e brand also o ers serviced apartments for extended stays.
It has a dedicated theatre desk where one can book tickets to plays and musicals in the city, as well as sightseeing tours and lunch and dinner reservations at any London restaurant. ere is a Classic Parade service that o ers the likes of Ferrari, Lamborghini, Mercedes and Bentley for however long you wish to rent the supercar during your stay for travel anywhere in the UK.
e a ernoon tea at the only dining option here, Seymour’s Restaurant, takes you back to the Victorian era with its traditional British menu. It has a selection of tea and co ee alongside scones, cakes, clotted cream and sandwiches. You can also order the Royal A ernoon Tea that is served with a glass of champagne. is restaurant and bar creates a homely vibe with plush sofa chairs, rich drapery and so carpeted oors. Antique artwork and real replaces ll the place whose signature dishes include Scottish smoked salmon, lamb cutlets and mixed berries crumble with custard.
A one-night stay in June is upwards of £153/`14,284. leonard.com
PREVIOUS PAGE: The Beaumont CLOCKWISE FROM TOP: a room in Artist Residence London; The Beaumont's sitting room; and 45 Park Lane's exterior
TOP: The Lanesborough's lobby