”Tucked behind a historic 1865 entrance, this exquisite hotel is the perfect combination of opulence and comfort for the ultimate luxury stay. Whether you are looking to celebrate an occasion or simply enjoy a stay in an iconic London location, this charmingly quirky yet high-class hotel will not disappoint. ”
By Myranda Bolstad, content writer
In the southwest of Mayfair and south of Soho, you’ll find the iconic Hotel Café Royal. Theatreland, Buckingham Palace, and Westminster are approximately a mile away. The famous and fashionable Savile Row is a short six-minute walk away, as are the luxury shopping areas of Bond and Oxford streets.
The Heathrow International Airport is just under an hour’s drive from the Hotel Café Royal. The London Underground’s Piccadilly Circus station, served by the Bakerloo and Piccadilly lines, is just a minute’s walk from the hotel, and national and international rail stations are only 20 minutes away by car. For those arriving by car, be sure to contact the concierge to help plan the most convenient route, as Regent Street and some surrounding streets are sometimes closed to traffic in support of cultural events.
This beautifully restored historic building features the thoughtful style of David Chipperfield Architects. The luster and artistry of this grand hotel have been preserved throughout this stately building, which marries the historical with the contemporary. The interior design is more modern in terms of styling, with a sleek and refined atmosphere throughout most of the public areas and guest rooms. The Oscar Wilde Lounge, however, pays homage to the more opulent craftsmanship of the hotel’s more dramatic history and is an absolutely stunning room with its frescoes, gilded walls, intricately-detailed crown molding and glimmering mirrors. The beautiful marriage of old with new, of opulent with refinement, all lend themselves to the exquisite, prestigious aesthetic of the hotel.
The hotel offers private as well as express check in and check out. It has concierge services as well as a tour desk and ticket service, so guests don’t have to travel far to arrange their stay’s activities. Baggage storage and currency exchange services are conveniently offered at via the front desk. Housekeeping occurs on a daily basis, and suit press, shoe shine, ironing, dry cleaning and laundry services are all available on site for an additional charge. In-room dining is available at all hours of the day or night. Childcare services can be arranged at an additional cost for those traveling with young children. Private butler services are available for the guests staying in the exclusive wings.
The Hotel Café Royal features 160 guestrooms, including seven signature suites and 54 more standard suites. All rooms are designed with comfort and luxury in mind. Guest rooms are designed in Portland stone or paneled in fumed oak, and all feature Carerra marble bathrooms. The minimalistic, sleek design of the rooms gives rooms a serene, contemporary, and spacious feel. The beds are appointed with Frette linens, which made from the finest fibers in unparalleled quality to help you achieve a perfect night’s rest. The rainforest showers in the bathroom add a luxurious touch, as do the designer amenities by Floris.
Our favorite accommodation:
For the most enchanting and exclusive stay at this hotel, look no further than the Dome Penthouse Wing. It has twelve bedrooms, a comfortable living space perfect for entertaining guests, stunning views of Piccadilly Circus, Westminster and Regent Street, and two furnished private terraces. While all the rooms are comfortably furnished with king-sized beds, the Master suite is the most exquisite, as it resides under the iconic copper dome and features extensive wardrobe space, a spacious bathroom with a rainfall shower and large, separate bath in ming-green marble, and a 98 inch cinema-style television in front of a sumptuous crescent-shaped couch. As part of your stay, you will have access to the Akasha Holistic Wellbeing Centre. Private butler service, as well as a personalized butler’s pantry, are also provided. Your terrace can be transformed into a romantic dining setting for ultimate privacy.
Our second choice:
The Royal Wing extends the Royal Suite, so can accommodate guests in six to thirteen bedrooms, depending on your needs. The Master suite in this set of rooms is, of course, the most ornate, and features lovely touches such as historical and gilded details and large windows that let the natural light glow against the golden hues of the walls. The Master suite also includes a living area and kitchen space, as well as a large Carerra marble bathroom. A one-bedroom suite done in Portland stone directly adjoins the Master, and down the hall, another four to 11 bedrooms can be booked as part of the wing. As with the exquisite Dome Penthouse Wing, butler service and private butler’s pantry are part of your stay in this accommodation.
The hotel has a number of suites that make for a perfect romantic getaway for honeymooners, such as the intimate yet spacious Celestine Suite with its large windows framing views of Regent Street, or the Empire Suite whose lush sofas and armchairs are perfect to cuddle up in. Tickets to attractions and events can be arranged at the front desk, so you don’t have far to go to plan your entertainment. Treat your sweetie to a sweet by visiting one of Paul A Young’s fine chocolate shops in Soho. For a day on the River Thames, you may want to rent a private yacht and take a picnic lunch packed by the hotel. For spa-style pampering, book the Celebration for Two at the Akasha Holistic Wellbeing Centre, where you start with champagne and a fruit platter in a whirlpool tub, followed by a massage or a facial personalized to your needs in the couple’s treatment room.
Food and Drinks:
There are a number of incredible choices for extraordinary dining experiences in the busy city of London, and for some of these, you don’t even have to leave the hotel. The hotel features the Laurent at Café Royal, a new grill and sushi bar by Laurent Tourondel. Steaks are cooked to perfection on the open flame parrilla grill, and options include Scottish Aberdeen Angus and Japanese Wagyu Kagoshima. The contemporary yet classic dining room is decorated in warm bronzes with cool greys, and the presence of the gorgeous Italian Murano chandelier adds to your experience. Breakfast, lunch, and dinner are all available at the Laurent, as are late night cocktails.
Open from noon to midnight, the Green Bar, with its botanical-inspired cocktails, has been called one of the finest luxury bars in London. Snacks and light dishes are available; however, the vibrant and imaginative cocktails are the biggest draw. The Green Bar also offers an Absinthe experience, for those who wish to follow in the footsteps of the bohemian intellects who frequented the Café Royal throughout its history.
For those wanting a cozy café experience, the Papillon has been designed to be relaxed yet elegant. Beautifully appointed in golden sienna marble that pays tribute to the hotel’s rich history, breakfast, lunch, afternoon tea, and dinner are all served. It also features a pastry counter for those who don’t want to dine in but don’t want to miss out on sampling Executive Pastry Chef Guillermo Caballero’s scrumptious patisseries.
For an opulent traditional afternoon tea, available from 11:30 am to 7:30 pm, be sure to book a table in the opulent and elegant Oscar Wilde Lounge. This award-winning tea service is complement by the stunning setting. The menu has been carefully crafted in partnership with legendary French perfumier Diptyque to enhance the flavors and provide an aromatic experience.
The hotel’s Akasha Holistic Wellbeing Centre includes a swimming pool available to guests. The 60-foot lap pool with its white walls, lovely lighting, and high ceilings makes it a perfect oasis to retreat to relax in the water. Children between five and 16 years of age are welcome to use the pool with adult supervision on weekdays between 10 am to 12 pm and 2 pm to 4 pm, and weekends from 10 am to 11.30 am and 2 pm to 3.30 pm.
The Hotel Café Royal features a state of the art gym in the Akasha Holistic Wellbeing Centre, complete with private studios for personalized classes, a large workout room with LifeFitness equipment, and personal entertainment centres. The space is fitted with changing lights in the LED ceiling to help motivate and enhance your workout. Fitness classes are offered and range from the high impact like TRX and calisthenics, to the more holistic such as Pilates and yoga, all with trained instructors. Personal trainers are also available for booking for those who want to take their workout to the next level with professional help.
The Akasha Holistic Wellbeing Centre also features a spa that includes nine private treatment rooms along with a 60 foot pool, Hamman, jacuzzi, and sauna. The private treatment rooms are cleanly done in pristine white, and the Hamman is done in calming marble. Treatments created to rejuvenate and revitalize are on offer, including hydrotherapy rituals in the dedicated Watsu pool, massages, facials, and other beauty treatments. The options are both exquisite and luxurious, and you may want to take advantage of a signature package such as Opulent Seclusion, where you are treated to a fruit platter and champagne while you soak in a marble whirlpool, and is followed by an aromatherapy massage and facial. The spa also employs well-being specialists to offer a full, holistic approach to your health that is personalized to your physical, mental, or emotional needs. Resident guests and spa day guests also have unlimited access to the spa facilities. The Akasha Holistic Wellbeing Centre’s range of specialists go beyond the standard spa offerings. Specialists available for private consultation include a nutritional therapist, an intuitive counsellor, a Thai yoga and massage specialist, a life coach, a reiki master and crystal healer, and aquatic bodywork specialist.
Kids, pets, and accessibility (Restrictions):
Children are welcome at the Hotel Café Royal. There are plenty of suites that can accommodate multiple family members, or rollaway beds are available if you prefer to room with your children. Babysitting services can be requested.
Pets are not allowed at the hotel.
The hotel is wheel-chair accessible and includes rooms adapted for guests with disabilities. Hypoallergenic rooms are also available.
Activities and attractions:
The city of London has no shortage of fun and interesting things to do, including plenty of luxury options. Charter a private yacht and spend the day seeing the sights by boat on the River Thames, or book a helicopter for an aerial tour of the city. If you prefer to stay on land, you can book a private chauffeur to take you to see the attractions or the best shops. For a perfectly tailored bespoke suit, you’ll definitely want to stop by the famous Savile Row. Sports fans may want to take in a game of football (that is, soccer); book a private box at the Emirates Stadium, home of the Arsenal, to watch a game in a style fit for a king, complete with professional catering. For history lovers, arrange private tours to Windsor Castle, Bath, or even Stonehenge for the day before returning to the comfort of the hotel for the night.
Prices for a standard room start at approximately $610 USD in the low season, and at $716 USD during peak times.
”The Hotel Café Royal has hosted prominent guests from royalty to rock stars: Edward VIII and George VI often took lunch at ‘The Café’, and Davie Bowie famously retired his alter ego Ziggy Stardust here in the presence of prominent guests such as Mick Jagger and Lou Reed. Guests choosing to stay at this beautiful hotel are sure to have an exceptional stay and be made to feel like they themselves might be rock stars or royalty!”