15 London Hotels To Visit Over Christmas
15 London Hotels To Visit Over Christmas

15 London Hotels To Visit Over Christmas

Whether it’s dinner and drinks with the girls or an afternoon tea with family, there’s no better time to visit the capital’s best hotels than at Christmas. From glamorous favourites to newer openings, these are the spots to visit over the festive period…
By Sherri Andrew
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Image: THE NED
Claridge’s, Mayfair
Claridge’s, Mayfair

FOR TIMELESS EXTRAVAGANCE:

Claridge’s, Mayfair

With its handsome art-deco exterior, tail-coated doormen and Mayfair location, Claridge’s is the epitome of timeless elegance. This year, its iconic Christmas tree has been designed by Louis Vuitton. As you’d expect there are plenty of festive treats across its restaurants and bars. Book dinner at the newly opened Claridge’s Restaurant headed up by chef Coalin Finn to try dishes like whole grilled native lobster, stop for fizz at the iconic Claridge’s Bar, or visit the ArtSpace Café for coffee, brunch, and seasonal treats created for the festive season. If you want to go all out, there’s a special three-night offer with yuletide treats, gifts from Father Christmas, and rides around Mayfair in a horse-drawn carriage.

Visit Claridges.co.uk

FOR GLITZY DINING:

Raffles London at The OWO, Whitehall

This long-awaited hotel finally opened this summer. Set in the former Old War Office in Whitehall, the building has undergone a monumental transformation with the addition of 120 rooms and suites alongside 85 private residences. The OWO has nine restaurants and three bars, including a grand space on the building’s rooftop set to open in the new year, and three dining experiences by chef Mauro Colagreco at Raffles London. One of them is Parisian restaurant Café Lapérouse – a glamorous spot for a high-end dinner with the girls. Elsewhere, the hotel has been decked out with festive decorations and numerous Christmas trees.

Visit Raffles.com

FOR EXCELLENT COCKTAILS:

The Dorchester, Mayfair

Few places feel more festive than The Dorchester, which underwent an extensive restoration and extension at the start of the year. Of all the spaces and restaurants, we like the Vesper Bar, one of its recent openings where guests can stop in for champagne and cocktails. Here, the interiors are elegant with touches of 1930s glam, while the hotel’s head bartender Lucia Montanelli oversees the rotating cocktail menu. Elsewhere, The Grill – head up by chef Tom Booton – has new festive menus, including a four-course set lunch for a reasonable £65. 

Visit DorchesterCollection.com

The Dorchester, Mayfair
The Dorchester, Mayfair

FOR FESTIVE WORKSHOPS:

The Langham, Marylebone

With numerous events over the festive period, you could easily spend a whole day at The Langham, making your way around its restaurants and taking part in various workshops. Until the end of the year, guests can try its festive afternoon tea at Palm Tree, created in partnership with department store Liberty, and enjoy three-course dinners at The Wigmore, with dishes like pork terrine with apple chutney, Christmas turkey pie with all the trimmings, and warm spiced ginger cake with cinnamon anglaise. Over at its cookery school Sauce, there’s everything from gingerbread house decorating workshops to Christmas wreath and cookie masterclasses on offer. Towering trees decked out with Liberty decorations are dotted around the hotel, while mulled wine and mince pies are served daily from 4pm to 6pm in the lobby.

Visit LanghamHotels.com

FOR OLD GLAMOUR:

The Savoy, Strand

As with the other ‘grande dames’ in this list, Christmas is one of the best times to visit The Savoy, when the smells of freshly baked mince pies and mulled wine fill the air, and twinkling lights illuminate its historic rooms. On the Strand, it is ideally placed for the West End theatres and the Royal Opera House, as well as the National Theatre and Royal Festival Hall across the river. Make a beeline for the iconic American Bar (the longest surviving cocktail bar in London), or head to the uber glam Beaufort Bar open Thursday to Saturday nights with DJs. Don’t miss the Route 1889 in the Front Hall – an ornate antique steam train where guests can step inside one of the intricately designed carriages to enjoy a glass of champagne. You can also expect festive afternoon teas and Christmas classics at its many restaurants, including 1890 by Gordon Ramsay.

Visit SavoyChristmas.com

FOR SWEET TREATS:

Brown’s, Mayfair

Brown’s is one of London’s oldest hotels, so it should come as no surprise that Christmas is an extravagant and traditional affair. This year, the iconic Rocco Forte hotel has announced Britain’s first chocolatier, Charbonnel et Walker, as its festive partner. Guests can order from a fun a chocolate trolley at restaurant Charlie’s (headed up by Michelin-starred chef Adam Byatt); and tuck into classic cocktails with a chocolate twist over at The Donovan Bar. There’s also a festive afternoon tea in The Drawing Room – think chocolates and champagne beside the fire. Look out for the towering Christmas tree decorated with a colourful baubles and ribbons, and Charbonnel et Walker truffle boxes.

Visit RoccoForteHotels.com

FOR A GIRLS’ NIGHT OUT:

Nobu Hotel London Portman Square, Marylebone

Launched in late 2020, the 249-bedroom Nobu Hotel London Portman Square sits on a prominent corner of Marylebone. Like other Nobu properties, the hotel showcases traditional Japanese architectural details and offers a high-end but relaxed stay. Naturally, there’s also a Nobu restaurant – which serves all Nobu Matsuhisa’s culinary classics – plus a heated terrace. Over the next few weeks, guests can try its festive afternoon tea featuring a selection of sushi, canapés and sweet treats with a glass of fizz. You can also drop in for Christmas wrapping workshops, led by Tomoko Kakita, an expert in the art of Furoshiki, before continuing the night at its pretty bar – a lively spot for a festive girls’ night.

Visit London-Portman.NobuHotels.com

The Dorchester, Mayfair
The Dorchester, Mayfair

FOR BEAUTIFUL DECORATIONS:

The Connaught, Mayfair

Alongside its sister hotels Claridge’s and The Berkeley, The Connaught from Maybourne hotel group is all about five-star luxury. One of London’s finest hotels goes all out at Christmas; this year’s 31-foot-tree is outside the main entrance and has been designed by British artist and sculptor Dame Rachel Whiteread. Inside, guests will be welcomed with roaring fires and Christmas scents, while its chefs are busy behind the scenes preparing festive treats and special dishes. This year, there’s a festive afternoon tea at restaurant Jean-Georges at The Connaught, as well as new à la carte dishes like roast bronze turkey and ham with cranberry sauce, and spiced dark chocolate tart with cinnamon ice-cream.

Visit The-Connaught.co.uk

FOR FESTIVE FUN:

The NoMad, Covent Garden

The NoMad London has established itself as a go-to destination for celebrities and those in the know. Inside, the former home of Bow Street magistrates’ court and police station is a sophisticated space offering everything you’d expect from a top hotel. Expect beautiful Christmas decorations throughout the hotel, and twinkling lights in the light-filled atrium of its signature restaurant – a great option for a girls’ Christmas lunch. Finish the day with drinks at Side Hustle, the hotel's cool Latin American bar.

Visit TheNoMadHotel.com

FOR INDULGENT DISHES:

1 Hotel Mayfair, Mayfair

On Berkeley Street, overlooking Green Park, this nine-storey hotel is right in the middle of all London’s best bits, from Oxford Street to royal parks. As well as 137 rooms and 44 suites, the hotel is also home to Dovetale, a ground-floor restaurant from two-Michelin-starred chef Tom Sellers (Restaurant Story), which continues to welcome a string of celebrity guests. Guests can try festive dishes and a special edition knickerbocker glory from the ice-cream trolleys, as well as new cocktails on the cosy winter terrace, in collaboration with Johnnie Walker Blue Label. Over the next few weeks, the hotel will host a range of festive masterclasses – think gingerbread decorating and eco-friendly wreath workshops – and hotel guests can access personal styling services by Cercle.

Visit 1Hotels.com

Rosewood London, Holborn
Rosewood London, Holborn
The Connaught, Mayfair
The Connaught, Mayfair

FOR FINE DINING & JAZZ:

Rosewood London, Holborn

If great food and drink is top of your priority list, head to the Rosewood London on High Holborn. From brasserie-style dishes in the magnificently grand Holborn Dining Room to creative cocktails at atmospheric Scarfes Bar – not forgetting the hotel’s special Art afternoon tea – you’ll want to make your way around each restaurant. For fine dining head to the Mirror Room (we recommend the tasting menu from food visionary Imogen Kwok, available until March), and for a hearty feast, book a private dinner in the Pie Room to enjoy seafood starters, traditional pies and delicate desserts. Finish the day with drinks at the cosy Scarfes Bar, with its Christmas stocking set over a roaring fire and live jazz music.

Visit RosewoodHotels.com

FOR LATE-NIGHT DINNERS:

The Twenty Two, Mayfair

The Twenty Two is one of the capital’s hottest destinations right now, with a string of A-listers spotted there since it opened last year. This hotel, restaurant and members club has transformed an Edwardian manor on Grosvenor Square into a richly decorated west London hideaway with 31 bedrooms and suites – including a mews house – in addition to the public restaurant and private club. This year, the hotel is going all out for Christmas, with supersized decorations in keeping with its meticulously designed interiors, and festive pop-ups over the next few weeks. Book at table at the striking blue restaurant to try a menu of seasonal dishes alongside festive classics and boozy desserts.

Visit The22.London

FOR CHRISTMAS FEASTING:

The Ned, City

Aside from its Insta-worthy interiors, The Ned has everything you need under one roof. For overnight guests, the 250 bedrooms range in size from small rooms to generous suites – all nodding to 1920s glamour. Plus, there are eight restaurants in and around the food hall, each offering festive menus over the next few weeks. Guests can try a festive afternoon tea with champagne at Millie’s Lounge, as well as menus including roast turkey dinners with all the trimmings; and a sharing menu featuring smoked salmon blinis and maple glazed turkey at Electric Bar & Diner. Plus, there’s live entertainment over in The Parlour, as well as performances from Gareth Malone and his choir every Sunday evening.

Visit TheNed.com

The Ned, City
The Ned, City

FOR COUNTRY CHIC IN THE CAPITAL:

Beaverbrook Town House, Chelsea

If you’ve planned a festive day out in and around Chelsea, make time to visit Beaverbrook Town House in Sloane Square. Set over two Georgian townhouses the hotel has 14 suites named after London theatres, all designed by Nicola Harding – the creative force behind some of the UK’s best hotels. Over the next few weeks, guests will be greeted with bespoke Christmas decorations and plenty of festive cheer. There are new Asian dishes to try at The Fuji Grill restaurant, plus festive tipples at Sir Frank's Bar. Overnight guests will also be treated to a range of Christmas gifts and extras to get into the festive spirit.

Visit BeaverbrookTownHouse.co.uk

FOR A KITSCH EXPERIENCE:

The Henrietta, Covent Garden

One of the most affordable options on this list, The Henrietta does Christmas so well. Headed up by Experimental Group, the hotel’s main draw in December is its pop-up bar Miracle. The Christmas-themed bar – renowned across America for its creative cocktails garnished with a side of kitsch – is being hosted on the hotel’s mezzanine, which has been decked out with retro decorations, candy canes, giant nutcracker and lots of tinsel. Guests can tuck into festive bar snacks and drinks like the ‘Christmapolitan’ made with vodka, elderflower, dry vermouth, spiced cranberry sauce, lime, rosemary and absinthe. 

Visit MiracleAtHenrietta.com

FOR CHAMPAGNE WITH THE GIRLS:

London Edition, Fitzrovia

On the northern edge of Soho, the London Edition is a glamorous spot for a night away. Inside, guests will be greeted by the lively atmosphere in the Lobby Bar, which has a cool members-club feel. Michelin-starred Berner’s Tavern, overseen by Jason Atherton, is the place for a glass of something cold from the champagne trolley and some classic British fare – we recommend the signature lobster macaroni cheese. For standout cocktails, head to the Punch Room (the gin-infused punch is an SL favourite) and ask the bartenders to create you a festive tipple or two. 

Visit EditionHotels.com

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