LWSY London > Regency Elegance at The Kensington SW7
Since moving to Paris last Spring, I’d only been back to London a handful of times, and all fleeting visits. This time, I was travelling back to London for a week. I was looking to find a beautiful hotel, with plenty of living area spaces so I could have a few meetings, meet some friends for tea and enjoy the space of a hotel without the hustle of perhaps a really central or city based location.
The Kensington is on the corner of Queens Gate, just a couple of minutes from South Kensington tube, and a short walk from Hyde Park and Kensington Gardens. I used to live just down the road in Fulham, so it was a perfect spot for me to be based.
I arrived straight off the Eurostar and was in a hurry to dash to my first meeting, so the team were super quick to prepare me a takeaway coffee and keep my bags for me. They asked to take my number as they’d offered to call as soon as my room was available. I love that kind of service already. I had a moment whilst waiting for my car so sat in this cute outdoor nook on the front step. If I wasn’t in such a hurry I would’ve most definitely taken the bicycle. Love hotels with bicycles.
I arrived back at the hotel between afternoon appointments to check into my room and take a look around. I’d planned to have dinner with a friend at their restaurant, Town House which with it’s own street entrance services as an independent bar/restaurant alongside the hotel.
With the ambience of a members club, the staff are savvy to know as and when you need service and when to be left in peace, a business travellers dream I thought whilst taking a moment to explore. Each room is filled with light thanks to the bay windows, and the library restaurant is wall to wall stocked with up-to-date novels and cultural coffee table style books to read.
The White room below is the perfect spot for an informal meeting, afternoon tea is served in the afternoon which I couldn’t say no to! You’ll find open fires in nearly every room, the day I checked in London was on snow alert, so the fires kept the winter chill at bay.
In true FOMO style, I always love to see the different styles of rooms and suites in a hotel. Never one to miss out on a photo opportunity I was eager to view The Knightsbridge Suite. I think this has to have one of the most elegant designs in any city hotel I’ve recently seen.
Mixing the old with the new, the French inspired decoration creates an eclectic design. Uninterrupted views of South Kensington can be taken in from the balcony.
The Suite features a King bed, Jacuzzi bath, separate shower, separate guest powder room, velvet upholstered nook, separate living room with cocktail cabinet and Murano glass chandeliers. Natural daylight floods through the bay windows. London airport collection is complimentary.
My Studio Suite above featured a fabulous Julien Chichester Four Poster bed, work station and large wardrobe and suitcase platform. The large bathroom had a roll top bath, separate shower and WC. Aromatherapy Associates toiletries kept me smelling suite after my gym session in the basement before dinner. I’m always happy to be able to plug my own music into a Bose iPod docking station.
My afternoon tea soon rolled into drinks then dinner, and I was happy for a change of scenery at K Bar. Spot the Killer Ochre pendant lights. I remember coming here a couple of years ago and thinking to only tell my favourite people about this special bar. So beautifully lit in the evening, and never overcrowded so you always feel you have the best seat in the house.
Dry January had us attempting to steer clear of the gin, so we opted for a Seedlip cocktail, we were happy to see some interesting flavours be offered to us as alternatives to a regular aperitif.
Dinner was a delight. There were plenty of really healthy plates to choose from, octopus carpaccio, seared tuna and picked radish, we may have caved in on the truffle and lobster mac & cheese but made up for it with a side 12 baby lettuces and microgreens. For dessert we tried the ‘La Fromagerie’ cheeseboard and grilled pineapple, mango sorbet and peanut butter ice cream.
It was another early start for me the following day, but after a long soak before bed and half a movie watched on the giant tv screen, I was ready for my morning coffee at 7am before running out the door at 8am. The perfect London hotel, you don’t even need to leave for dinner!
The Kensington is one of eight luxury hotels in The Doyle Collection, an Irish family-owned hotel group with uniquely styled hotels in the UK, US and Ireland. Room rates start at £178, my Studio Suite was £600 per night, The Knightsbridge Suite begins at £1500 per night. Terms and conditions apply.
The Kensington 109 – 113 Queen’s Gate, South Kensington London, SW7 5LR
Visit their website here
With thanks to Perowne International & The Kensington for my stay in January 2017