How To Spend A Very Luxurious Christmas In Five Star Hotels In London | London Evening Standard
imagine Christmas day stress-free. Feet up, someone presents you with a bucket of bucks fizz and a hash pie on a silver platter … it’s not a dream – you just need to check into a hotel for the five star treatment.
Our editors road-tested party packages at top London hotels and can confirm that this is suite life.
Christmas on the river
The south shore is my favorite place for a festive evening: mulled wine from Alpine huts, revelers eating raclette in igloos, lights along the river. Sea Containers London, shining like pink chocolates, is the coolest place in town.
Cheerfulness begins with a festive feast: roasted turkey stuffed with pork, roasted Brussels sprouts with maple, poached pears in mulled wine served with cinnamon ice cream.
The next morning is Christmas as usual: handpicked gifts, candy scattered around the room, advent calendar. Behind each door is a charitable donation made in your name, to increase the feel-good factor. Breakfast – smoked salmon, cold meats, fresh pastries – is served on the balcony so you can greet the ships as they sail.
Doubles from Â£ 175 per night, seacontainerslondon.com
Long live the wind
The richness of the festive spirit draped over The Ned, a Grade I listed Art Deco masterpiece, is breathtaking (there is an 18 foot Christmas tree in the lobby with 4,000 lights, knots velvet and more than 1000 balls). Plus, live Christmas favorites played on piano in the lobby, starting at noon. Add to that Cecconi’s generous Roasted Bronze Norfolk Bronze Turkey Plates with all the traditional toppings, followed by a door stopper of a Chrimbo pud and chopped pies, and you have a very merry Christmas.
We joyfully rang from the heights of the rooftop Ned’s Club to mulled wine in The Vault Room – a downstairs bar with a 20-ton safe door and 3,000 safes. The Cowshed Spa lifted the weight of our tired December brains. A very merry Christmas indeed.
Doubles from Â£ 390 per night, thenned.com
I have found the surefire way to go from zero to Christmas in 60 seconds. Book a screening of The Holiday at the Berkeley rooftop cinema – watched from inside a micro-chalet with an electric blanket and a glass of champagne.
It helps if you’ve spent the previous hours singing Christmas carols and enjoying the Christmas menu (Salted Scottish Salmon with Gin and Beetroot, Miso Glazed Cod, and Hazelnut Praline Log, dipped in Port). The beds were sumptuous; the baths lined with aromatherapy tonics. Imagine you could avoid the train trip, your family and Boxing Day monopoly for it?
Doubles from Â£ 690 per night, the-berkeley.co.uk
Anything but standard
Brutalist ’70s architecture suggests wintry discontent rather than Christmas cheer, but here I’m what looks like a concrete cheese grater for a festive stay at the Standard, left. Inside, the lobby is covered in sequins, with balls hanging from the ceiling, and The Library Lounge, with sepia lighting and low-slung leather sofas, is cozy. After a spicy ginger margarita at the Double Standard bar, dinner twists in time in Isla: Torbay shrimp cocktail, sherry bagatelle to finish, and a choice of turkey, goose, turbot or turkey meatloaf. porcini mushrooms for the vegetables in between.
We have the largest rooms with a view of St Pancras. The mini-bar with tequila, shaker, lemon, and lime is one of the luxury touches, as is the rolling tub next to the super king-size bed.
Christmas In The City Offer, Â£ 345 per night, standardhotels.com
How would you like to stroll the golden floors of a five-star hotel on a party afternoon? The Rosewood London’s Room Hunt is a game with an extraordinary prize: the ability to upgrade your room to a lavish suite, with your own butler and mixologist from the award-winning Scarfe’s bar, plus a dinner, massage and live performance from a group . Who needs the lottery?
But, to win the Golden Ticket, you have to face nine other pairs of guests. We got into the spirit of the game, but we missed the price. Regardless, our suite featured monogrammed pillows and a bottle of Ruinart. The package is the ultimate Christmas present for the competitive person with an expensive taste.
From Â£ 775, rosewoodhotels.com
May beautiful lady
You will have a merry Christmas at the May Fair Hotel, especially in one of its suites, with rugs so fluffy you won’t need slippers. If you can bear to leave the hall, there is a 201-seat cinema, spa, or Mediterranean feast at the May Fair Kitchen. Settle into the dimly lit May Fair Bar before returning to your suite for a small pie in the marble bathtub. Which relatives?
Doubles from Â£ 325, themayfairhotel.co.uk