Five-star in the capital
This month, our Conference Planning Executive Nicky O’Sullivan headed to London to sample four of the finest in five-star hotels.
The former Chancery Court Hotel near Covent Garden reopened as the Rosewood London at the end of 2013, adding a 555-capacity ballroom to the capital. It has 262 rooms and 44 suites that are both immaculate and very impressive.
The reception is home to the hotel’s loveable Labrador, which spends his time lazing around and adds to the home-from-home luxury appeal.
Two dramatic staircases lead from the reception to the balcony, which overlooks the Grand Ballroom’s foyer and provides access to five breakout rooms.
The hotel’s Holborn Dining Room restaurant boasts the largest Gin bar in London, serving up cocktails alongside traditional British food. While the huge hotel bar has a lovely roaring fireplace and lots of cozy corners.
St Pancras Renaissance
You get a real sense of the history of this beautiful building even before entering as the Sir George Gilbert Scott facade presents such an impressive welcome.
The 245-room hotel’s largest space is the Hansom Hall ballroom, which can hold 320 for a banquet or 550 theatre-style. Set in the space where Hansom taxis used to drop-off visitors to the hotel and station, it boasts the original glass roof from 1873, floor-to-ceiling windows and a large terrace.
The meeting rooms are lovely, especially the Ladies’ Smoking room, which has a small courtyard leading from it and a capacity of 180 for a reception.
The St Pancras Renaissance also has a Marcus Waring restaurant called The Gilbert Scott, which provides the ultimate grand dining experience. It also has a private dining room, perfect for more exclusive events or special occasions and accommodates up to 18 guests. Alternatively, the lively Chef’s Table in the restaurant’s engine room offers a unique view of the kitchen, creating memorable dining experiences for groups of up to 10.
Although The Langham has been entertaining guests for over 150 years, it has always kept up with the times and never fails to impress. Last year, this 380-room grande dame opened its new Regent Wing, featuring 44 rooms and suites, and the 450sqm Sterling Suite with six bedrooms, a private butler service and private media lounge.
The hotel boasts a beautiful lounge area for afternoon tea, while the lovely outside courtyard area accessible from the 364sqm ballroom is great for barbecues in the summer months.
The Corinthia has the largest ESPA Spa in Europe, which is enough for me to pack for a weekend of rest and luxury relaxation. Spread over four floors, it features 17 treatment rooms, a private spa suite, nail studio, indoor swimming pool, vitality pool, amphitheatre sauna, ice fountain, marble heated loungers and private sleep pods. Bliss!
The Corinthia also has 294 rooms, 47 impressive suites and three restaurants. The Italian Massimo has a lovely private Chef’s Table for up to 20 guests. There is also two other private dining spaces – one above the main restaurant, which provides atmosphere from the diners below. The other, perfect for afternoon tea for groups of between 12 and 30, behind a discreet curtain off the main bar.