Hotels in London with unusual perks
This place knows the meaning of ‘perk’, especially in the style department – everywhere you look something fun or funky will catch your eye. Bring your own vinyl (or have some delivered) to play on the record player in your room. Groups can stay in the Deluxe Double Double, or one of the suites, where you’ll have a separate living space, as well as a terrace. And pet perks include blankets and treats.
The recently refurbed Lanesborough is as elegant as ever – Regency in style, with twenty-first century technology – and they’ll throw in your very own Jeeves too. It’s the only hotel we know of that offers complimentary round-the-clock butler service to all its guests. So whatever you need – from a wake-up call to a good book at bedtime – Ask Jeeves. And for the eternal diehard chuffer, one of the kindest perks is the cosy Garden Room smokers’ bar.
You don’t have to be rich to experience 'the perk' at Z. Rooms are small, beds are a squeeze, and bathrooms are optional (en suites are available from £69). Also there are no phones or proper wardrobes, but… there’s free wine and cheese between 5pm and 8pm in the evenings. Crackers!
How about staying in a work of art? Designed by sculptor Antony Gormley, ‘Room’ is an oak-clad room within a cubist figure attached to the side of the hotel. Unsurprisingly, it’s not cheap and, at around £1,250, you might not sleep at all, but during London’s Open House weekend, you can visit for free. Extras include a complimentary minibar, on-demand films, and transfers in a vintage Daimler.
Need to glam-up for the red carpet? Using the Whatever/Whenever service, you can browse top designer threads and have them delivered to your room. Proposing to your beloved? W/W can light up a patch of grass with 1,000 candles. The 24-hour service promises to deliver whatever you want, whenever you want it, so long as it’s legal. Spoilsports.
The best views, and the highest infinity pool in London, are just two of the perks that can be experienced here. If you can afford the suite on the 39th floor you’ll get a 180-degree view of the Thames and your own personal butler. If you can’t, you still get to enjoy views from floor-to-ceiling windows, Shangri-La beds, marble bathrooms with underfloor heating and Acqua di Parma toiletries.
Anyone for tennis? A family-owned B&B set in three Grade II-listed townhouses on a classic Georgian crescent, the Mentone stands out from the raft of other Bloomsbury hotels and B&Bs thanks to views of a tree-lined private square, as well as access to the tennis courts within.
It’s buzzier, boutiquier and even blingier than its big sister, the Dorchester, but the 45 is just as classy. A personal host can arrange everything from a limo to restaurant reservations, and rooms have plenty of perks: a yoga mat, health and fitness videos, plus personalised running programmes and the loan of a Brompton bike. Or you could just watch telly from your marble bath.
Forget dial ‘M’ for murder, how about a killer ‘dial 0 for anything’. At the Chiltern, along with the cachet (Naomi loves this place), the chef (Nuno Mendes creates the menu), and the condoms (considerately supplied in your bathroom), a note beside your bed urges you dial ‘0’ and ask for whatever you wish for – but I’m guessing, like Harrods, that you’ll have to pay for it, so dial carefully.
Back down to earth at Premier Inn’s offshoot, the Hub has mini rooms that are sensibly designed in which everything, from booking it to turning off the lights, is controlled via an app on your phone or tablet. Perk-wise, it is probably the only London hotel using augmented reality; the app brings to life a London map on your bedroom wall with mini area guides.