The Wellesley Knightsbridge, A Luxury Collection Hotel

A London boutique gem with art deco flair

The Wellesley Knightsbridge, A Luxury Collection Hotel may be one of the newer kids on the Belgravia block — it joined the London hotel scene in 2012 — yet the look and feel of this luxury boutique property authentically harks back to the art deco era, when it started life as an underground station.

The music you’ll hear playing at check-in is an ode to the three decades this Knightsbridge destination was home to popular jazz and dining spot Pizza on the Park, as is the onsite Jazz Lounge, where the ivories of the grand piano are tickled during daily afternoon tea and the lights are dimmed as a roll call of crooners joins in come the weekend.

Tucked into the rest of the small but well-formed seven floors is a fine-dining Italian restaurant, an intimate bar stocked with a rare selection of spirits dating back to the 1700s, two outdoor cigar terraces and 36 delectable rooms and suites.

Our Inspector's Highlights

  • There’s a hybrid car parked out front ready to sweep you off to anywhere within a 1.5-mile radius, so you can arrive at a West End theater show, Buckingham Palace or Harrods in style. This complimentary drop-off service is available to all guests on a first-come, first-served basis.
  • The Wellesley boasts the largest hotel humidor in Europe, neatly decorated with a map of Cuba inlaid into its marble floor and containing around $2 million in cigars, including limited-edition collections. The knowledgeable team is on hand to guide anyone from novices to aficionados with suggested smokes or drink pairings.
  • This luxury hotel is well-positioned within walking distance to some of London’s best sights. Straight across the road is Hyde Park; to the left are the iconic department stores and museums in Knightsbridge and Kensington; and to the right, Piccadilly Circus, Mayfair and Leicester Square.
  • No ask is too big for The Wellesley’s Golden Keys concierges, whether it’s securing a table at a sought-after restaurant, drawing up an itinerary to inspire your first or 15th visit to London or, as one guest requested, commissioning a diamond-encrusted teddy bear.
  • At check-in you’ll be introduced to your butler, who’ll be on hand to assist with unpacking and packing, shoe shining, special room arrangements and more throughout the duration of your stay.

Things to Know

  • While the sumptuous décor may not scream “kids welcome,” The Wellesley is very much a family-friendly hotel. The rooms can be set up with extra beds and cots, and little ones will be welcomed with teddy bears, games, a pint-sized bathrobe and slippers.
  • Reserve ahead for the weekly Live at The Wellesley evenings in the intimate Jazz Lounge, where performances are paired with a tasting menu of fine Italian cuisine. These popular sessions book up weeks in advance.
  • For views stretching across Hyde Park, request a room at the front of the boutique hotel from the third floor up. For a quintessentially London city scene, opt for a spot at the rear.

The Rooms

  • The 14 One Bedroom Suites (named after classic stars such as Ella Fitzgerald and Charlie Chaplin) feature cozy semi-circular velvet couches in a living area leading off from the bedroom. Settle in for one of the movies-on-demand or a read of the magazines and books laid out and tailored to your tastes.
  • All rooms are equipped with Samsung tablets loaded with international newspapers which you’re free to take out and about.
  • The bathrooms, decked out in impeccably laid slabs of Carrara marble, all feature built-in mirror televisions and orange-scented Hermès products. If you enjoy a soak, ask for a room with a freestanding tub.
  • The centerpiece of the 19 suites is The Wellesley Penthouse, an elegant two-floor accommodation accessed by its own private staircase. Adapted to its full four-bedroom capacity, this 3,240-square-foot space boasts a rooftop terrace overlooking the neighboring area and is the only guest room on the property where smoking is permitted.

The Look

  • The glossy oxblood-red-tiled arches that adorn the Grade II-listed façade of this London hotel are a visual reminder of its time as the original Hyde Park Corner underground station (the disused train tunnels still lie underneath). The current station is just seconds away, giving you speedy access to the Piccadilly Line.
  • The Wellesley evokes the art deco era through a sumptuous color palette ranging from soft dusty pink to striking monochrome, alongside etched mirrors, sparkling crystal chandeliers and an abundance of polished marble and brass. Look out for details such as the patterned floor of The Oval Restaurant, which was inspired by Hungarian-American fashion designer Judith Leiber’s sunburst clutch bag.
  • Specially commissioned art reigns throughout the guest rooms and public spaces, with each floor spotlighting portraits of prominent figures from the ’20s, ’30s or ’40s. We particularly like the one of Winston Churchill, which has been painted on tobacco leaves and hangs on the deep blue walls of the Cigar Lounge.
  • Hugging the exterior glass curves of the two heated cigar terraces is a sculptural steel screen made up of 15,000 individually cast flower buds. British artist Lee Simmons’ botanical nod to Hyde Park cleverly conceals those sitting inside, yet provides a view of the streets from within.

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Getting There
11 Knightsbridge, London, SW1X 7LY Great Britain
LHR (28-45 min)   LCY (26-50 min)   LGW (55 min-1 h 20 min)  
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