So we may be based in London, and always happy to travel far and wide, but this month we take a look at what’s available a little closer to home. Welcome to this month’s Hot Hotel, Rosewood London. We were delighted to be able to review the very first of the ‘new’ Rosewood properties for thedesignair.net. Rosewood, has been around for over two decades, originally as a hotel management company, however, within the last few years has announced a plethora of new openings around the globe under their new umbrella brand ‘Rosewood’. If this template is anything to go buy, we are in for a few exciting years!
The Rosewood London is situated in London’s Midtown, which to any local Londoner is translated as ‘Holborn’. On the corner of the financial and legal districts, as well as the entertainment region, Covent Garden, it’s unique location gives it it’s character and space to breathe. The old building, built in 1914 in a neoclassical style, is based around a grand courtyard which acts as the entrance way and epicentre to the hotel’s layout.
On arrival, making your entry via car through the main archway of the impressive and recently renovated property, you are greeted by staff decked out in snappy quintessentially English threads by none other than one of our judging panel, Nicholas Oakwell of NOUniform. Whilst there is no parking on site, the doormen are more than happy to park your cars for you for a small tip. We were lucky enough to check in to a suite on our arrival, and on walking up to the check in desk we were greeted by our very our butler, dressed in smart tartan suiting. The main foyer is beautiful, a myriad of art, both modern and old, European and Asian (a subtle nod to the Asian ownership of the chain.)
The foyer leads off to the main Mirror room restaurant, as well as their Scarfes Bar. The foyer is fronted by a copper corridor, which has over a million pounds-worth of copper lining the intricate entranceway. It’s an impressive sight in itself. Flanking each side of the foyer are two lift lobbies, decked in dark black finishes, and featuring beautifully ornate large cages with finches and other musical small birds, whose music fills the lobby space. In the main areas, Rosewood’s designer Tony Chi has managed to fuse Asian touch points with the best of British to create a truly unique space to London.
Being taken up to the suite, we couldn’t help but marvel in the craftsmanship that is on display. The finishing of the hotel is second to none. Every detail meticulously considered, and eloquently executed. On entering the suite which for us, “The Dome Suite,” was situated on the 7th floor in the centre of the properties front, situated under the central dome on the property. The Dome Suite is situated on three levels, the entrance bringing you to a large reception area with comfortable sofa, dining table and large flatscreen TV. A few steps bring you up to the bathroom, which is a mix of white marble, and copper/tin-metal tiles, a few steps later and you are brought to the crowning glory, the bedroom, with large circular window situated in front of the bed. There is also a staircase that eventually will bring you to the heart of the dome, a spectacular space in itself, but still to be fully renovated. No doubt, when it is, this will be a truly spectacular suite. Whilst we have no images of the suite, it is decked out in a similar style to the suites we have featured below.
All the suites are all decorated with a sense of style and flair, and have a great british modernity to them. Utilising strong masculine shapes and textures as well as colour accents. The whole suite concept is based upon texture and tactility. The space feels cosy and home-like and offer a great sense of comfort and calm. A true haven from the madness and Chaos of the heart of London. The largest and most impressive of the suites is Rosewood London’s very own 6 bedroom Manor House. The Manor house at over 6,000 square feet, is vast by anyone’s standards, so large indeed that it has it’s very own postal code and entrance way with private lift. The Manor house is a single-storey wing on top of the property. It is an urban haven, each bedroom featuring its own Italian marble bathroom, two walk-in closets, a dressing chamber, and the wing features several sitting rooms and private studios, a large dining room and a stunning library. It could quite possibly be one of the best suites in London.
For those who can’t afford such grandeur and opulence, the standard rooms offer the same level of craftsmanship and luxury, just on a smaller scale. As well as pillow menus and Nespresso machines, expect Rivolta Carmignani Italian Linens and at least a 46″ TV Screen to watch a fine selection of Movies or large selection of TV channels.
The hotel itself, apart from offering a variety of residential spaces, offers a plethora of hidden gems. As well as ballrooms, private dining spaces and a members club due to open soon, there are three main dining spaces. The Mirror Room offers an array of refined cuisine, and high teas during the day. There is also the Holborn Dining Room, perfect for breakfast and dinner, offering a more relaxed environment, closer to that of a small french brasserie, but on a larger scale, offering more British fare. Attached to the Holborn dining room, is the Holborn delicatessen, perfect for local workers and residents, looking for fresh and enticing tasty morsels.
Lastly is Rosewood London’s crown jewels. Scarfes Bar is a modern mix of contemporary London eccentricity with Downton Abbey opulence. The space is framed by a giant active fireplace, surrounded by a library of old books and antiquities. The walls are adorned by specially commissioned Gerald Scarfe illustrations, the famous illustrator who used to illustrate for British newspapers, as well as working on Pink Floyd’s The Wall album and even recognised for his production design work on Disney’s film Hercules. As a juxtaposition of the fun wall murals, relaxed and traditional Chesterfield-style seating fills the space, and surrounds the grand gin-bar, which has London’s best barmen, mixing cocktails with flair and knowledge. This is by far the best place in London for locals and visitors to relax after a long day – and sample the best drinks in the country (something Scarfes bar is actively trying to officially gain recognition for, as their barmen are constantly entering mixology competitions – and winning!) Like stepping back in time, this London haven also often has live music to accompany the drinks, and Indian style bar food which complement the libations. Our top tip is try the Club Sandwich, whilst not traditional, it’s to die for.
As well as having a gym, the property boasts it’s own brand spa. The ‘Sense Spa’ is set in the basement, and on entering the dark slate and bamboo environment, you feel at ease from the world, transported to a modern cave of wonderful treatments. Opting for the treatment room used for couples massages, we were treated firstly with a steam shower, which was situated in the treatment room. After 15 minutes of steam, we were greeted by friendly and competent masseuses who provided a wonderful massage. For those who don’t want massages, there is a range of facial treatments and body treatments to rejuvenate after a long day shopping in London.
Whilst being Londoners we don’t usually stay in London hotels, this new hotel, barely a year old has already pitched itself at the very top of London’s offerings, succeeding in delivering on its promise of luxury. We are totally in awe of this property, and how its template for the brand will be translated across the rest of the Rosewood properties opening over the next few years. The service level is excellent, design flawless and who brand proposition strong and grounded.
Those looking for a little understated and perfectly formed luxury should check out Rosewood London next time they plan on staying there. Who knows, you may even see us propping up the bar.
Rooms start at £375 and our Dome Suite starts at £2500 per night. Book your room at www.rosewoodhotels.com/en/london