One of London's newest hotels, it's small, but destined for greatness. The Thierry Despont-designed rooms are high on Hollywood-style glamour with gorgeous park views. The in-house restaurant Cut is chef Wolfgang Puck's first European restaurant. Though it's a steakhouse, the lobster club is the thing to get.
This outpost of the original Ace Hotels in Portland, Seattle, and New York fits right in with the East End's super trendy vibe. The vibrant lobby is of minimalist decor and stacked with a Pacific Northwest coffee shop and a hopping in-house restaurant. Let the converse-clad, happy-hipster clientele guide you to the local art and restaurant scene that Shoreditch is famous for.
A hotel to match the new East London, where business meets fashion and tech. Expect every modern amenity, though nothing as obvious as formal check-in desk.
Designer Anoushka Hempel isn't one for low-key minimalism. The rooms here are over-the-top, sexy, opulent, and dramatic, with Russian, Turkish, and Oriental themes. Adoring quotes from Gwyneth Paltrow and Mickey Rouke rotate through the home page; you decide whether that's a draw or a turn-off.
Downstairs is a cafe and French restaurant. Upstairs is a rooftop bar and grill. In between are spacious, contemporary guest rooms for stylish travelers looking to eat and sleep after a day of Shoreditch gallery-hopping.
A genteel perch in the center of Soho, full of bright colors, plush and playful furnishings, and a fantastic array of patterns and textures. Oscar, the hotel's bustling bar and brasserie, is always good for a pick-me-up.
Celebrities — and in turn, locals and tourists — flock to the former neo-Gothic fire station for Nuno Mendes' inventive dishes. The smart ones also score a room in André Balaz's glamourous hotel: grand but restrained rooms, impeccable and discreet service, and access to the guest-only Ladder Shed bar.
An impossibly posh Art Deco classic that attracts royalty as well as up-and-comers. The rooms are grand; the service is impeccable. Refreshments on site include legendary afternoon tea, a chic and tiny Fumoir bar, and Gordon Ramsay at Claridge's.
The Connaught is one of those dream hotels where everything feels pretty and perfect and beautifully appointed. And you feel like a visiting dignitary or generous aristocrat. And everyone is your friend. And money is no object. You almost don't want to leave the premises, and who can blame you when you have the Connaught Bar and Hélène Darroze restaurant and Aman Spa and your amazing room right there.
The Georgian townhouses used to be the home of William Hogarth and the Gargoyle Club, and the hotels continues to draw a creative Soho crowd. There are 39 charming rooms, some of which cost as little as £95, and a buzzy restaurant and bar. Part of the Soho House Group, Dean Street feels clubby in a good way, because you get to stay here.
A charming, cozy, family-run hotel consisting of three townhouses in a row. Hide out in the corner bar with a Scotch by the fireplace, or tuck into a novel in one of the many sitting rooms. Come weekend, the parking lot nearby hosts a lovely greenmarket.
Old, grand, and discreet despite its central location near Victoria Station. They are not shy about letting you know that this is the Royal Family's favorite hotel. The Queen Mum used to be a regular.
It's a modern fantasy version of a boarding house. You check in at the gastropub (have a spot of tea while you're there), then a waiter escorts you to one of the eight cozy, well-appointed, Wi-Fi enabled rooms. Convenient to much of Central London, it totally feels like a find.
Beloved Brit designer Kit Kemp brings her modern style and love for colors and patterns to the 91 rooms with floor-to-ceiling windows overlooking the courtyard or the city. While the expansive space is in the middle of Soho, guests will never have to leave thanks to a 190-seat movie theater, a retro 1950s bowling alley, a rooftop garden, and artisan boutiques in the courtyard.
A recent renovation to a grand old buidling with a long and storied history (it once stored the best wine collection in the world, then became London's most coveted meeting place in the 1890s, and most recently played headquarters of a sporting club). It is now a modern and elegant stunner centrally located on Regent Street. If you're not staying, come for a cocktail at Oscar Wilde Bar (and pretend you're slumming in a Louis XVI chateau), a tonic at Green Bar (a sleek oasis in a busy neighborhood), or a something sweet at The Cafe, a marble-filled dessert restaurant.
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Young and cool, indie and interesting, inexpensive and industrial. In short, a hotel that reflects its hip East London surroundings. The rate structure reward early planners: The earlier you book, the less you pay. Sometimes as little as £1.
A chic boutique hotel spread across five gorgeous stucco-fronted townhouses with stylish modern charm, a serious art collection, and a killer chef serving snacks behind the bar.
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Great for business travelers, with proximity to central London. While the rooms are somewhat sparse, warm furniture of velvet and leather cozily furnish the public spaces, complete with a roaring fire and billiards table. This slick hotel is filled with multiple bars and art-filled restaurants. However, the mass Marriott brand feel can be hard to shake for indie-all-the-way travelers.
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This hotel is quintessential Olde England. The red brick-and-flower-blox facade, chintzy, sporting-art adorned interior, and warm staff of true English manners to greet you on a first-name basis (sometimes with a glass of champagne) give it a true homestay feeling. The rooms are a bit pricey for the size, but the location is prime, with many rooms overlooking the Kensington Gardens and Royal Apartments.
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If you're in the market for an apartment instead of a hotel — one with modern and comfortable furnishings, functional kitchens, and lots of light mere steps from Oxford Circus, welcome home. It's not cheap, but nothing is in this part of town.
This former insurance office building has had a $130 million makeover into a 1914 Edwardian Belle Epoque luxury hotel. Feel like Parisian royalty as you enter through soaring domes and saunter up marble staircases to a lavish suite.
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This one has family rooms — a rarity in the UK and Europe — where four can fit semi-comfortably. Well-situated to Peter Jones department store and the King's Road. Proximity to the Duke of Yorks Square add to the appeal.
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A classic and very old-school hotel in St. James, mere steps from Hyde Park. Tradition reigns here, from the fussy but elegant lobby decor to the American Bar, a terrific and very masculine hideaway. Newer rooms overlooking the back courtyard are light, modern, and floral. The special gem of the Stafford is concierge Frank Laino, who makes London come alive as few people can. Dream it up and ask for it: He'll make it happen.
The rooms are sleek and modern or art deco chic, the new restaurant already has a Michelin star, and the mosaic-tiled pool is flooded with light. The lively Bethnal Green neighborhood will provide non-stop diversions, and the cocktails from the Town Hall tea tray will revive you when energies wane.
Cozier than its sister hotel in Marylebone, the Georgian townhouse on historic St. John's Square feels more like staying at your cool, eccentric, antique-hoarding aunt's place. Look for unique details in each of the thirteen rooms (like four-poster beds under a Union Flag canopy, a Buddha head in a fireplace grating), and drop by the beloved cocktail lounge to raise a glass to Great Aunt Wilhelmina.