It is the duty of the filthy rich to spend, and the most extravagant hotels in London help them do this in imaginative ways, for at the very top of the service sector exists a world where one’s every whim becomes a command as soon as it’s uttered. Own logo lit up over London, Sir? No problemo. You’d like to swim among the clouds, Madam? Follow me. Clear the hotel restaurant or bar of the riff raff? But of course. Given that, at any given moment, a London hotel is almost sure to be housing a handful of royals, oligarchs or industry magnates from around the world, they are very well set up to house them in the most extraordinary spaces and ways. Check out our pick of the best extravagant hotels in London.
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The most extravagant hotels in London
The Sterling Suite here is an eye-watering £1,000 an hour – or £24,000 a night. The butler is fully conversant with all the top-range gizmos in the media room. He has only to clap his white-gloved hands for a pianist to appear at the keyboard of the white Yamaha baby grand while guests eat dinner. It is the largest hotel suite in London and has six bedrooms, each one more flamboyantly upholstered than the next. The master bedroom has hand-painted chinoiserie on silver leaf panels and verre églomisé glass with gilded age details.
The minions scurry about the crowded city streets when viewed through the house binoculars from the godlike residence of the £3,250 a night Shangri-La Suiteon the 39th floor of the Shard. The butler can identify every important building and its architect as he uncorks a vintage, touches on the bathroom mirror-TV and runs the whirlpool bath, while guests fire off emails from the cedarwood desk in the study. Further up is the Infinity Skypool, the highest swimming bath in Europe, piercing the cotton wool clouds.
The Dome Suite at this Piccadilly grand dame has been described as a mini-Albert Hall. It costs £9,000 a night, not including the optional personal performance by a 1970s rock band (subject to availability). There is space for six guests in the marble bath. One takes the perfumed evening air on the terrace overlooking Piccadilly Circus where one’s own special message can been displayed – courtesy of the hotel – on the iconic screens next to the Coca Cola advert.
At this gorgeous Mayfair staple, the newly opened four-bedroom Kipling Suite (because the author of ‘The Jungle Book’ once stayed there) costs £6,210 a night including a chauffeur-driven limo from the airport, a ‘personalised shopping experience’ and a lesson in martini mixing. You don’t even have to unpack your luggage as it will have already been done for you, with your evening wear hanging in the walk-in wardrobe. Have a glass of Ruinart instead. It is the oldest champagne in the world and you’ll find it chilling in the fridge.
Champagne is also the cup that cheers at The Goring, across the road from Buckingham Palace. The renowned footmen dole it out as a soothing balm, especially to those who have forked out £8,400 for the Royal Suite. The in-room tipple is cocktails, mixed to order. The royal credentials extend to the huge shower which, quirkily, has a life-size painting (behind glass) of Queen Victoria to keep you company. The master bedroom’s walls are covered with the same silk weave that was used in 1912 for RMS Titanic’s dining room. In the hotel’s extensive grounds, croquet is played in the summer.
You’d like to sleep inside a statue? Nothing is impossible at TheBeaumont, housed in the old Selfridges garage. Here Antony Gormley’s ROOM can be had for £2,250 a night. It is a white sculpture that can be seen from the outside of the hotel, looking like a LEGO figure sitting on its haunches above the entrance. Inside, the living space is decorated in much the same Art Deco style as the rest of the hotel, but the style shifts when you step into the pure white marble bathroom, or through a black velvet curtain into ROOM, a one-windowed space that contains just a bed.
The Apartment on the top floor of this stately hotel is the very height of Mayfair living – double height, in fact, in the quite glorious sitting room. For £16,800 per night guests can make full use of a 24-hour butler service while browsing specially commissioned artwork and first editions books in the library. Once enlightened, they can attend to their physique in the award-winning Aman Spa in the hotel’s basement. There’s a Powerhouse gym, a black granite pool filled with ionised water, and a steam room scented with seasonally rotated exotic oils.
The Royal Suite in this apotheosis of swank has a black marble bathroom with a bath just crying out to be filled with asses’ milk. The walk-in shower is also spectacular; the steam room takes the biscuit. Once you’ve dragged yourself away from this veritable waterworld you can take advantage of the rest of the massive apartment, including a dining room for up to ten guests (this might explain the £18,000 per night price tag), butler service and unique artworks – the hotel’s special relationship with New Bond Street’s Halcyon Gallery means original art is on display throughout the rooms.
Occupying a great wedge of a building at the corner of Whitehall Place and Northumberland Avenue, Corinthia has rooms, suites and seven penthouses, the biggest of which, the Musician’s Penthouse, suggests a level of luxury few ordinary instrumentalists could afford. Guests can tickle the ivories of a Steinway Model O, compose an opera in the marble bathroom, perfect the composition using a multi-room media system and demand sustenance from the 24-hour butler service. A snip at £10,000 a night, practically going for a song.
Forget cabs and chauffeur-driven transfer limos; at the 67-room Baglioni, you can do shopping and business trips in a chauffeur-driven Maserati if you book the Royal Suite, which has its own extensive terrace and butler. You can even block book an entire floor, which comes complete with its own private bar to ensure you really don’t have to rub shoulders with the grubby hoi polloi. Views are equally exclusive – of Kensington Palace and Hyde Park – and naturally, pets are welcome.
B.COM London Widget
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