The Con­rad Lon­don

Upscale Living Magazine - - CONTENT - Con­rad Lon­don St. James, 22-28 Broad­way, Lon­don SW1H 0BH, Eng­land, United King­dom Tel: +44 203 3018080, www.con­rad­ho­tels3.hil­ton.com By CHRISTO­PHER KANAL Pho­to­graphs cour­tesy of Con­rad Lon­don

St. James Lon­don, Eng­land

Sit­ting right at the heart of Lon­don’s West­min­ster the Con­rad Lon­don St. James is within a short saunter of some of the UK’s premier his­tor­i­cal sights, such as West­min­ster Abbey and Trafal­gar Square, as well as its seats of power - both the Houses of Par­lia­ment and Down­ing Street are the ho­tel’s neigh­bors.

The Con­rad Lon­don St. James is lo­cated di­rectly op­po­site St. James Park Un­der­ground Sta­tion. The ho­tel ap­pears rel­a­tively unas­sum­ing on the out­side but once you en­ter it is a taste­fully de­signed, spa­cious and slickly op­er­ated ho­tel. The prop­erty’s

Blue Boar restau­rant is widely ac­claimed and a chic bar, both matched with strik­ing works of art and sculp­ture, have turned the ho­tel into some­thing of a lo­cal celebrity in an im­pres­sively short space of time. The St. James area the Con­rad Lon­don St. James in­hab­its is bustling dur­ing the week with of­fice work­ers and civil ser­vants but on week­ends it has an al­most pas­toral calm mak­ing the ho­tel an ideal base for sight­see­ing. Nearby St. James Park is a rare oa­sis of green and trees in this other­wise heav­ily built up area and has spec­tac­u­lar views of Buck­ing­ham Palace.

On en­ter­ing the dark­ened lobby of the ho­tel, you feel like you are en­ter­ing an ex­pan­sive, mar­ble floored and chan­de­liered war­ren.

The creams and dark wood evoke an al­most Ori­en­tal de­sign tem­plate seen in the finest ho­tels of the mega-tropolizes of Sin­ga­pore, Shang­hai and Tokyo. How­ever the im­pres­sive pieces of art and orig­i­nal draw­ings from leg­endary artist Ger­ald Scarfe in the bar and a slightly bizarre sculp­ture sat­i­riz­ing the House of Com­mons firmly bring you back to the hal­lowed ‘terra firma’ of West­min­ster. The Con­rad Lon­don St. James has 256 con­tem­po­rary rooms in­clud­ing 15 lux­ury suites. The sig­na­ture Con­rad Suite comes with its own pri­vate el­e­va­tor and a win­dow open to the stars. All suites are sump­tu­ously equipped with large mar­ble bath­rooms, a sep­a­rate bath tub and walk-in rain for­est show­ers. Stan­dard rooms at the ho­tel are large, airy and light with min­i­mal­ist wood touches and dis­crete light­ing. The cur­tains are opened au­to­mat­i­cally and some rooms have im­pres­sive Lon­don vis­tas.

The bed is gar­gan­tuan and cosy, flanked by two night­stands, and sits op­po­site a large wall­mounted flat screen tele­vi­sion. A Ne­spresso ma­chine and mini­bar is stan­dard while still and sparkling wa­ter is pro­vided gratis. The dark­brown, al­most vol­canic black mar­ble bath­room is warm, sexy and boasts im­pres­sive fea­tures.

The very pop­u­lar Blue Boar restau­rant boasts ro­bust, in­ven­tive con­tem­po­rary British cui­sine. Head Chef Michael Rior­dan has cre­ated seasonal menus that uses fresh, re­gional in­gre­di­ents. Sta­ple dishes from the à la carte menu in­cludes Angus Beef Fil­let, Wild Rab­bit Stew, and Roast Cor­nish Plaice. Pri­vate din­ing at Blue Boar oc­cu­pies two ex­cep­tional spa­ces con­nected to the main restau­rant by a strik­ing floor-to-ceil­ing wine wall. Break­fast is served at the Blue Boar and cen­ters around a ex­ten­sive self-ser­vice buf­fet. Cream High Teas are served in Em­me­line’s Lounge named af­ter women’s ac­tivist Em­me­line Pankhurst. The bustling bar takes it cue from the clas­sic old English pub.

As be­fits a lux­ury branch of the Hil­ton World­wide chain that has out­posts in sev­eral ma­jor in­ter­na­tional cities, the Con­rad Lon­don St. James has all the first class touches one would ex­pect in­clud­ing an ex­cel­lent mul­ti­lin­gual re­cep­tion and wired-in concierge ser­vice who can ad­vise on din­ing, spa and beauty ser­vices as well as the best of Lon­don’s shop­ping, art gal­leries, the­atre and nightlife there is a ded­i­cated Con­rad Concierge App. There is an im­pres­sive Hil­ton-stan­dard busi­ness cen­ter, con­fer­ence rooms and fa­cil­i­ties. An Ex­ec­u­tive Lounge is avail­able ex­clu­sively to guests who book Ex­ec­u­tive Rooms, Suites, and to Di­a­mond Tier Hil­ton Honors mem­bers. The ho­tel also boasts a small, well equipped gym that can be ac­cessed 24 hours.

The Con­rad Lon­don St. James is child-friendly - Chil­dren re­ceive a big box of toys on ar­rival while a babysit­ting ser­vice can be ar­ranged in ad­vance.

This year Con­rad Lon­don St. James is cel­e­brat­ing 100 years since Con­rad Hil­ton first es­tab­lished the Hil­ton brand. The cel­e­bra­tions in­clude a new Vin­tage menu at the Blue Boar restau­rant and a “Back in Time” ex­pe­ri­ence on the River Thames. Guests book­ing the “Back in Time” Ex­pe­ri­ence step into a clas­sic Roll­sRoyce to ex­plore Ox­ford­shire’s coun­try­side. Draw­ing up along the banks of the Thames, guests will be met by the cap­tain of a vin­tage boat ready to travel down the river through the green and glo­ri­ous coun­try­side. Guests can en­joy lunch on board be­fore stop­ping at Clive­den House, where a Pri­vate But­lers Tour and sump­tu­ous afternoon tea await.

Dou­ble rooms from £317 a night. Break­fast is in­cluded. The Back in Time Ex­pe­ri­ence starts from £2,500 for four guests.

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