Former Gentlemen’s Club turned cosy hotel in the heart of Piccadilly
A continuation of a gentleman’s club founded back in 1857, the new incarnation of the St James’s Club has retained the warm welcome but ditched the male-only door policy. The original club was intended as a home from home for travelling diplomats, and the modern version also appeals to the in the know out of towner. The appeal is down to the peace and quiet. Tucked away down a cosy cul-de-sac, it’s easy to forget that Knightsbridge, Covent Garden and New Bond Street are only short strolls away. As are the grassy trinity of Hyde, St James and Green parks – the latter accessed directly through the book-lined basement.
Mind you, the hotel’s charms do their best to stop you venturing out at all. The restaurant, Seven Park Place, is Michelin-starred, the beds have magnetic appeal and most rooms boast the kind of spacious terrace that’s usually the preserve of central London’s mega-rich. It’s the service and serenity that really hook you though. I was definitely sad to leave, but for the night I felt a little like a princess - and the Queen was only down the road.