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Issue 4: London

Discover a locally curated guide to the city's finest experiences

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    • Issue 4: London

      Though its facade is very Old England, and almost bank-like, the Town Hall Hotel conceals a wonderful mid-century modern design sensibility, from the chairs in the lobby and rooms to the understated-but-sleek look of the bar and restaurants. Its location is tough to beat—the East side of London is very hip right now, and it’s 15 minutes from Oxford Circus. Try to stop into the Michelin-starred Portuguese restaurant on the premises, Viajante, for a snack or a drink before you leave town.

      • Issue 4: London

        Champagne upon arrival and a stunning view of Kensington Gardens are among the perks of this luxury Victorian hotel. Guests remark upon the incredible service, including doormen who remember you by name when you step out for a stroll and staff who bend over backwards to accommodate every whim. Some rooms border on the rococo—gold-and-white patterned wallpaper matching the bedspread—if that’s your taste, but there are also more modestly appointed options. This being a high-class hotel, there’s a wonderful spa and a fancy restaurant, naturally, but for a pre-dinner cocktail we’re partial to the charming Stables Bar, the equestrian-themed watering hole (and onetime carriage house!) seen here.

        • Claw foot tub at the Rookery. Photograph by Thomas Bowles
          Claw foot tub at the Rookery. Photograph by Thomas Bowles
        • A sitting area, with fireplace. Photograph by Thomas Bowles
          A sitting area, with fireplace. Photograph by Thomas Bowles
        • A non-paying guest. Photograph by Thomas Bowles
          A non-paying guest. Photograph by Thomas Bowles
        • A suite with a four-poster bed. Photograph by Thomas Bowles
          A suite with a four-poster bed. Photograph by Thomas Bowles
        • Grab drinks and treats at the Honesty Bar; sign your name, and pay when you check out. Photograph by Thomas Bowles
          Grab drinks and treats at the Honesty Bar; sign your name, and pay when you check out. Photograph by Thomas Bowles

          Issue 4: London

          Built in the mid-eighteenth century, this townhouse is small enough to feel homey, but fancy enough to feel worth the modest splurge. Expect canopied four-poster beds, antique furniture, claw-foot tubs, and other deluxe touches. The service is wonderfully attentive, and the location—near the Bank of England and St. Paul’s—is fantastic. When you need a break from the hubbub of the city, we suggest reading an English novel and sipping a glass of wine in the little private garden just outside the Conservatory.

        • Hotel stationery. Photograph by Thomas Bowles
          Hotel stationery. Photograph by Thomas Bowles

          Issue 4: London

          Gorgeous rooms, location in spades and sweet service are the hallmarks of this boutique Soho hotel. The National Gallery is an easy walk away, as is Piccadilly Circus, and each of the 58 rooms is wonderfully luxe without being stuffy—sort of like an upscale, English B&B. Don’t miss the lovely afternoon tea here, and ask for a room on a higher level—the views of the surrounding area are lovely

          • Issue 4: London

            Many London hotels are dominated by floral patterns and antiquated styling, which can be charming if that’s your style. At the Sofitel, however, the emphasis is more on modern lines, clean design and rooms painted in muted hues. (The one exception to this is the fabulous Rose Lounge, with its powerfully pink couch, afternoon tea service and ubiquitous fresh roses). Don’t miss the spa while you’re here; with an emphasis on French cosmetology, it’s one of the best in town.