London's regal retreat
50 Rooms / 43 Suites
The Lanesborough occupies perhaps the grandest location of any London hotel, standing resplendently at Hyde Park Corner, its imposing façade gazing out over Hyde Park to the north, Knightsbridge to the west, Mayfair and the rest of central London to the east. Having completed an extensive 18-month refurbishment in July 2015 that saw every room in the hotel redesigned, the Forbes Travel Guide Five-Star has an interior that is no less striking, with painstaking historical details evoking a sumptuous Regency home.
The Lanesborough was luxurious before the redesign, but now it’s a veritable feast for the senses. The place has beautifully crafted details abound, from the trompe l'oeil paintwork that makes the far end of the Great Hall look like a silken tent to the 2,100 sheets of gold leaf twinkling from the elaborately corniced ceilings. Richly upholstered chairs, sofas and ottomans — all commissioned specially for the hotel — beg to be sat upon, and thousands of original art works line the walls. The color palette is classic Regency — deep reds and greens, pastel yellows and blues — with variations of tone and texture, ensuring that every room has a unique feel.
Technology is subtly embedded in each of the 93 bedrooms and suites at the Lanesborough, so while the décor is traditional, the guest experience is thoroughly up-to-date. Each room is equipped with two tablets — one that controls air conditioning, lets you order room service, etc.; and one for surfing the web. On-demand movies and Wi-Fi come standard and every room has a printer, a scanner and a range of international plug sockets so both business and leisure travelers have all their needs met. A dedicated butler is ready 24 hours a day to unpack your suitcase, send clothes for pressing and generally look after you throughout your stay.
Breakfast, lunch, afternoon tea and dinner are all served at Céleste, a restaurant in a glass conservatory where fisheye mirrors reflect the brilliant blue of the walls and the sparkle of three magnificent chandeliers. Chef patron Eric Frechon (of Le Bristol, Paris fame) and his protégée, executive chef Florian Favario, have created a menu that is French in spirit and English in delivery, with most ingredients sourced from local British suppliers. Classic dishes like baked sea bass are enlivened by creative touches such as violet artichoke couscous, and the desserts (presided over by Nicolas Rouzaud, also of Le Bristol) are to die for — you won’t find delights like his cow’s milk sorbet anywhere else.
The Lanesborough’s popular Library Bar is as cozy as ever. It's the ideal place to enjoy a drink — the bar has one of the best collections of vintage cognac in London — or something to eat from the decadent snack menu (caviar, lobster rolls and truffle fries). Downstairs is the open-air (but entirely rain-sheltered) Garden Room, another area largely unchanged post-refurbishment. In this cigar lounge, a secret gem among visitors and locals, you'll be welcomed into the walk-in humidor by cigar sommelier Luca Tramontana, who will expertly guide you through the hotel’s 200-strong selection.
In an exciting development, The Lanesborough's new Club & Spa will debut in the spring of 2017, boasting renowned fitness, beauty and wellness experts as well as top-of-the-line treatments. Prior to the opening, access to a fitness space is available, and a select range of spa treatments can be experienced in your room for private relaxation.