Where to Stay in London: Neighborhoods and Hotels for Every Type of Traveler

From trendy Shoreditch to bustling Covent Garden, these are the best neighborhoods and hotels to book in the British capital

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London from St. Paul's
Photo: Getty Images

Whether you want to walk in the footsteps of the British royal family or simply find the perfect afternoon tea, every traveler should visit London at least once in their lifetime. The international metropolis is not only the capital of England, but its roots date back to the Roman era. Today, it’s a thriving hub of culinary diversity, cultural attractions, and, of course, historic sites.

 Regardless of your age or who you're traveling with, London offers something for everyone. From famous historic landmarks like Big Ben and Westminster Abbey, to modern art galleries and markets, there's plenty to see and do in the U.K. capital. Whether you spend your trip shopping on Oxford Street or twirling around the London Eye, here's where to stay for your upcoming trek across the pond.

Where to Stay in Mayfair

Kids and parents alike will love staying in Mayfair. Booking a room in the posh area means you're practically neighbors with the Queen herself, with Buckingham Palace located just a short walk away. It’s located near three royal parks (Hyde Park, Green Park, and St. James Park), making it the perfect place to stop for a break from the hustle and bustle of the city. Mayfair is also a quick walk to the shopping in Oxford Circus, the art in the National Gallery, and the delicious treats at Fortum & Mason's. It’s one of the most exclusive neighborhoods in London, but it’s still reasonably accessible for travelers.

The Mayfair Townhouse

Exterior of the Mayfair Townhouse in London
Courtesy of Mayfair Townhouse

Why We Chose It

The central location and prestigious address make for a stylish and convenient stay.

Key Specs

  • Free Wi-Fi: Yes
  • Resort Fee: No
  • Room Rate: $$$

Notable Amenities

Complimentary minibar and candy, fitness suite and personal trainer available for guests, Noble Isle bath products

Hotel Description

Built across a series of Georgian townhouses, The Mayfair Townhouse marries its historic setting with contemporary design and modern flourishes. The décor is opulent and flamboyant, but with a high-end touch that befits the neighborhood, and there is a well-curated collection of original art to accompany the velour furnishings. There are 172 rooms in varying sizes and layouts, including several garden suites that feature courtyard access. Families are welcomed with open arms and parents can opt for interconnecting suites. Cocktail bar The Dandy Bar serves food and drinks, but there’s a lot to discover around the hotel as well.

The Dorchester

Terrace Penthouse at The Dorchester
Courtesy of The Dorchester

Why We Chose It

Known as one of London’s best luxury hotels, this historic property boasts high-end amenities and unparalleled park views.

Key Specs

  • Free Wi-Fi: Yes
  • Resort Fee: No
  • Room Rate: $$$$

Notable Amenities

Babysitting and pet-sitting services, in-house tailor, luxury cars available for guest use, butler service, unpacking and packing services

Hotel Description

Nestled in the heart of Park Lane, The Dorchester has been a landmark London hotel since the 1930s. Today, the five-star hotel retains its luxury vibe with elegant décor and the sort of amenities that typically only belong to celebrity life. There are numerous room types, including eight signature suites and two opulent penthouses. Don’t miss the refined afternoon tea, served in the Orchid Room, and the Dorchester Rooftop, a dining experience with panoramic views of London and Hyde Park. The hotel caters to families, with numerous add-ons available for young travelers, as well as access to The Spa’s indoor pool.

Where to Stay in Covent Garden

Having a central location is essential to exploring every last nook and cranny of London, especially for newbie visitors. There's no better place to do this than Covent Garden, which contains a plethora of attractions and is notably close to many West End theaters. Plenty of Tube lines run through this area, so you'll easily be able to explore the city via public transportation. Covent Garden is home to endless pubs, museums, restaurants, markets, and shops—and walking distance to many more. The central location of Covent Garden is perfect for first-time visitors hoping to make the most of their time in London.

NoMad London

Aerial view of the Atrium at NoMad London
Simon Upton/Courtesy NoMad London

Why We Chose It

Throwback glamor meets comfort in the British incarnation of a New York favorite.

Key Specs

  • Free Wi-Fi: Yes
  • Resort Fee: No
  • Room Rate: $$$

Notable Amenities

Côté Bastide bath products, Ricari Studios and Katie England spa treatments

Hotel Description

Opened in 2021, NoMad London is an offshoot of the New York-based NoMad brand and it marries NYC-inspired design with English history. The location, in the midst of Covent Garden, is ideal for visitors looking to make the most of London. The hotel itself is set in a former magistrates court and police station, and many of the Grade-II listed details remain. The rooms are luxurious without being over the top, and there are three suite options for those looking for something a bit more grand. Dine in the NoMad Restaurant, built inside a glass conservatory, or grab a more casual bite at Side Hustle

Henrietta Hotel

Henrietta Hotel
Courtesy of Henrietta Hotel

Why We Chose It

This comfortable and stylish boutique hotel feels like a private hideaway in the heart of the action.

Key Specs

  • Free Wi-Fi: Yes
  • Resort Fee: No
  • Room Rate: $$$

Notable Amenities

Babysitting services, 24-hour room service, bespoke mini bar

Hotel Description

Henrietta Hotel, found adjacent to Covent Garden Market, is a cozy but elegant boutique property with 40 rooms set across two townhouses. While the guest rooms are relatively small — as befits central London — they are well-appointed and stylishly designed by French decorator Dorothee Meilichzon. Families and groups can opt for interconnecting rooms as well. There’s an Italian restaurant, Da Henrietta by Italian Supper Club, and a small cocktail bar, but the best of Covent Garden is right outside the hotel door.

Where to Stay in Southbank

In recent years, London’s Southbank, located on the south side of the Thames, has become more and more popular with travelers. It’s home to museums like the Tate Modern, attractions like the London Eye and Borough Market, and dozens of charming restaurants, pubs, and bars. The area is a great pick for families, as well as solo travelers, who will benefit from the ample amount of counter-top restaurants and food stalls around Borough Market. The neighborhood is also walking distance from Covent Garden and Soho, as well as sites like Tower Bridge and Big Ben. It's slightly quirkier than Mayfair and Covent Garden, with a range of hotel options that befit any budget.

The Hoxton, Southwark

The Hoxton

The Hoxton

Why We Chose It

This popular hipster brand has marked its territory in south London with impressive results and a rooftop eatery.

Key Specs

  • Free Wi-Fi: Yes
  • Resort Fee: No
  • Room Rate: $$$

Notable Amenities

Blank bath products, complimentary international calls, mini fridge with tea, coffee and milk, complimentary bicycles

Hotel Description

The Hoxton brand has embraced an effortlessly hip aesthetic that appeals to young travelers. Their third London property, The Hoxton, Southwark, is no different. There’s a lively lobby scene and 192 guest rooms that are contemporary and cool, with a factory-inspired vibe that pays homage to the area. The hotel is also home to a rooftop restaurant and bar, Seabird, which has quickly become a London favorite (be sure to book a table in advance). The hotel is within walking distance from Southbank and the Tate Modern and has easy access to several buses and Tube lines.

CitizenM London Bankside

CitizenM London Bankside

Why We Chose It

Travelers on a budget who still want something chic will find it at this modern hotel.

Key Specs

  • Free Wi-Fi: Yes
  • Resort Fee: No
  • Room Rate: $$

Notable Amenities

Book and movie library for guests, in-room mood lighting

Hotel Description

CitizenM’s outpost in Southwark features 192 rooms that appeal to both leisure and business travelers and is especially great for solo visitors. The guest rooms, while somewhat compact, feature massive beds, well-appointed bathrooms, and have technology that can be controlled easily via an app. There’s a bar and restaurant, but discerning guests will seek out nearby spots like Caravan Bankside and Lantana for meals. The hotel is walking distance from Borough Market, the Tate Modern, and Shakespeare's Globe, and it’s a quick bus ride to Covent Garden.

Sea Containers London

12th Knot Bar at Sea Containers London
Courtesy Sea Containers

Why We Chose It

Impressive river views and an unparalleled location set this hotel above the rest. 

Key Specs

  • Free Wi-Fi: Yes
  • Resort Fee: No
  • Room Rate: $$$

Notable Amenities

24-hour gym, Peloton Concierge service, in-house movie theater

Hotel Description

Book a room with a stunning view of the Thames at Sea Containers London, one of the city’s only hotels located directly on the river. The chic design evokes a 1920s transatlantic cruise liner, with contemporary rooms and suites that feature custom furniture by British designer Tom Dixon. Within the hotel, there is a spa, two restaurants, and a cocktail bar called Lyaness, which is regularly named one of the best in London. In the basement, visitors will find a plush outpost of Curzon Cinema, which shows the latest movies on weekends.

Where to Stay in Marylebone

Tucked away behind Oxford Circus and the bustle of Oxford Street, discerning travelers will discover Marylebone, a central neighborhood that feels local. It boasts a charming high street, as well as a Sunday farmer’s market, and it’s walking distance from Regent’s Park and Hyde Park, two of London’s best green spaces. Those interested in history can explore the Sherlock Holmes Museum, while art-lovers will be right at home in the Wallace Collection. Couples, especially those celebrating a special occasion, should opt for a hotel in the area, which is replete with hip restaurants like Kol, Lurra, and Chiltern Firehouse. It’s the sort of place where you feel like you’re in the know.

The Prince Akatoki

TOKii restaurant in The Prince Akatoki in London, England

Ben Carpenter

Why We Chose It

This Japanese-inspired minimalist hotel is a worthy splurge thanks to the central location and high-end amenities.

Key Specs

  • Free Wi-Fi: Yes
  • Resort Fee: No
  • Room Rate: $$$$

Notable Amenities

Gym, MALIN+GOETZ bath products, in-room yoga mat, evening tea service

Hotel Description

Just off Oxford Streets, guests looking for a more peaceful respite in the heart of the city will discover The Prince Akatoki, a five-star hotel inspired by Japanese design and hospitality. The rooms are elegant and tranquil, with a minimal aesthetic that is not always found in English hotels. The property caters especially to families, who can book interconnecting rooms or opt for one of the impressively large suites. Don’t pass up dinner at Tokii, which serves Japanese cuisine, or a flight of Japanese whiskey at the intimate Malt Lounge & Bar.

Treehouse Hotel London

The Nest at the Treehouse Hotel
The Nest at the Treehouse Hotel. Treehouse Hotel 

Why We Chose It

There’s a sense of casual relaxation at this centrally-located hotel, known for its city views.

Key Specs

  • Free Wi-Fi: Yes
  • Resort Fee: No
  • Room Rate: $$$

Notable Amenities

Nespresso machine, dog-sitting and dog-walking services, Paddington Bear stuffed toys

 Gaze over the London skyline from the Treehouse Hotel London, a nature-inspired property in the heart of Oxford Circus. The modern guest rooms, feature whimsical details, feature massive windows, best experience from the cushy window seats in several of the room types. Families can book connecting suites and kids (and adults) will love the plush Paddington Bear toys that live in the hotel. LA-import Pizzeria Mozza is located downstairs, but the location means that central London is literally at your doorstep.

Where to Stay in Chelsea

If your wanderlust inspires you to mingle with locals everywhere you go, it's important to stay in an area that isn't overrun by tourists. The Chelsea neighborhood is known among Londoners as a posh place to be, and you'll find plenty of high-end boutiques and restaurants along King's Road. During the day, you can explore an art exhibition at the Saatchi Gallery or see a play at the Royal Court Theater. Knightsbridge, which is home to famed department store Harrods, is a quick walk away. 

11 Cadogan Gardens

Exterior of 11 Cadogan Gardens
Courtesy of Iconic Luxury Hotels

Why We Chose It

The homey luxury of this boutique hotel offers visitors a unique, intimate stay with high-end touches.

Key Specs

  • Free Wi-Fi: Yes
  • Resort Fee: No
  • Room Rate: $$$$

Notable Amenities

Noble Isle bath products, 24-hour gym, Nespresso machine, babysitting

Hotel Description

Tucked away from nearby Sloane Square, 11 Cadogan Gardens — London’s only Relais & Châteaux property — is charming and relaxed, with an upscale boutique design that gives each room a unique flair. There are 34 rooms, 22 suites, and six new apartments, all of which embrace the building’s historic notes. Downstairs, Hans’ Bar & Grill is a solid option for breakfast or dinner, and the hotel’s classic afternoon tea is worth booking. The location is ideal for numerous attractions, including the Victoria & Albert Museum, the Saatchi Gallery, and Buckingham Palace. Those in town for the Chelsea Flower Show will find themselves only a few blocks away. 

Beaverbrook Town House

the library at Beaverbrook Town House
Courtesy of Beaverbrook Town House

Why We Chose It

Inspired by London’s theaters, this colorful luxury hotel has flair and a sense of fun.

Key Specs

  • Free Wi-Fi: Yes
  • Resort fee: No
  • Room Rate: $$$$

Notable Amenities

Complimentary mini-bar, Bamford bath products, gym partnership with KXU

 Art lovers will feel right at home in the Beaverbrook Town House, a five-star hotel set across two Georgian townhouses near Sloane Square. The property, which opened in the fall of 2021, is vibrant and fun, with a design by Nicola Harding that pays homage to London’s theaters. The hotel is the sister property to Beaverbrook Surrey, a country house hotel that is a short jaunt out of the city. Beaverbrook’s rooms are as theatrical as their inspiration and have a warm, whimsical vibe that will delight a certain type of guest. There’s a Japanese restaurant, the Fuji Grill, as well as Sir Frank’s Bar, which shows off the hotel’s collection of art and collectibles.

Where to Stay in Shoreditch

Shoreditch is one of London's trendiest neighborhoods, attracting young Londoners and visitors alike with its ever-expanding art scene and vibrant nightlife. Here, you'll find endless street art, clubs, bars, and restaurants featuring cuisines from across the world. Staying in this London neighborhood gives you a local's perspective on the U.K. capital, but it's still just a short ride on the Tube away from major tourist attractions. It’s a great pick for those who like quirky cocktail bars, hip restaurants, and truly local spots like the nearby Broadway Market and Columbia Road Flower Market.

Mondrian Shoreditch

Mondrian Shoreditch London
Courtesy of Mondrian

Why We Chose It

Embrace the hip vibe of Shoreditch at this trendy hotel, which boasts a rooftop swimming pool.

Key Specs

  • Free Wi-Fi: Yes
  • Resort Fee: No
  • Room Rate: $$$

Notable Amenities

24-hour gym with Peloton bikes, rooftop pool, spa treatments

Hotel Description

The Mondrian Shoreditch, which took over The Curtain Hotel, has the same understated sense of cool as its neighborhood. With a prime location and a coveted rooftop pool, the hotel is an ideal option for travelers who want something less touristy. The rooms are warehouse chic, with a sparse modern design, and many feature views of the London cityscape. There are several restaurants, including Hollywood-inspired Laurel’s On The Roof, but some of London’s best restaurants, including Brat and Dishoom, are just around the corner. Don’t skip a session at the fitness center, known as one of the best hotel gyms in town.

Nobu Hotel London Shoreditch

Best Hotels in London — Nobu Hotel Shoreditch
Courtesy of Nobu Hotels

Why We Chose It

Understated design and elegance are on point at Nobu’s Shoreditch outpost, which attracts leisure and business travelers alike.

Key Specs

  • Free Wi-Fi: Yes
  • Resort Fee: No
  • Room Rate: $$$

Notable Amenities

24-hour gym access, Natura Bissé bath products, in-room Japanese tea set, spa

Hotel Description

One of two Nobu Hotels in London, the Shoreditch edition shows off an industrial chic design that will appeal to travelers who love contemporary minimalism. The 164 guest rooms and suites are sophisticated and sparse, with a low-key elegance that is both comfortable and calm. There is, of course, a Nobu restaurant onsite, along with a fitness center and a cocktail bar. Book a table on the restaurant’s al fresco terrace for views of London, or explore the neighborhood, which is filled with local coffee shops, cocktail bars, and trendy eateries.

Where to Stay in Notting Hill

While many travelers may be familiar with the bustling market of Portobello Road from watching a certain Julia Roberts and Hugh Grant rom-com, Notting Hill makes for a great place to stay if you want to avoid the typical tourist areas and see the antiques of London. Located just west of Hyde Park, Notting Hill is undeniably appealing, with local restaurants, boutique shops, and an off-beat, artsy neighborhood feel that will appeal to those who’d rather browse an art gallery than wait in line for the London Eye. The hotels in the area tend to be smaller, with the chains located to the south in Kensington, which makes this an ideal pick for solo travelers or young couples.

The Portobello Hotel

The Portobello Hotel London

Why We Chose It

Embrace a rock ‘n’ roll vibe at this Notting Hill boutique, which features unique guest rooms and a quirky sensibility.

Key Specs

  • Free Wi-Fi: Yes
  • Resort Fee: No
  • Room Rate: $$

Notable Amenities

Green & Spring bath products, partnership with Cloud Twelve Wellness Spa, Honesty bar

Hotel Description

Notting Hill’s bohemian spirit is on display in The Portobello Hotel, which boasts 21 rooms that each embrace a different aesthetic. The most infamous is the room with a circular bed and antique Victorian bathtub, but all are dramatically designed and idiosyncratic. Breakfast is served in the room or downstairs, and the cozy lobby sitting room is a great spot to curl up with a book. Leave the kids at home for this one — The Portobello Hotel is the sort of place you return to after a raucous night out and then nurse a hangover over a full English breakfast.

The Lost Poet

The Lost Poet london

Why We Chose It

The tiny property benefits from thoughtful design and a neighborhood location that puts travelers in the heart of the action.

Key Specs

  • Free Wi-Fi: Yes
  • Resort Fee: No
  • Room Rate: $$

Notable Amenities

Complimentary breakfast, self-check-in and keyless access, Nespresso machines

 Travelers will feel right at home at The Lost Poet, a boutique hotel set in a Victorian townhouse right on Portobello Road. It features only four rooms, all of which are uniquely crafted with antique furnishings and signature colors. It’s quirky and intimate, with an option to book the entire property if you’re coming with a larger group. Splurge on “the Muse,” a two-level suite with a freestanding tub and a roof terrace with views of the ‘hood. While the hotel doesn’t have its own restaurant, it’s within blocks of some of the best in Notting Hill.

Final Verdict

Whether you’re traveling with a group, as a couple, or solo, London has plenty of accommodation options to suit any traveler. While central neighborhoods like Covent Garden and Marylebone will attract newbie visitors and families, areas like Shoreditch and Notting Hill can offer a more local feel for those venturing away from the tourist spots. Historic luxury properties like The Dorchester offer an escapist, aspirational quality, while boutique hotels like Beaverbrook Town House can become your home away from home while exploring London. 

Know Before You Go

  • London is an extremely walkable city, with numerous green spaces and parks. Its public transportation system, Transport For London, will take you anywhere you need to go via bus, Tube, or train. Pack comfortable shoes and, of course, an umbrella just in case.
  • For awe-inspiring, 360-degree views, book a free ticket to Sky Garden, located on the 43rd floor of the Walkie-Talkie building.
  • Many of London’s museums, including the Tate, the British Museum, the National Gallery, and the Natural History Museum, are free to enter. Visitors may need to book a paid ticket for special exhibitions.

How We Chose These Hotels

We evaluated over 30 hotels in London before choosing the best in each category. We considered elements like the property’s reputation, its design and history, location within London and its specific neighborhood, notable amenities, as well as unique hotel experiences. We also considered dining and wellness options, including standout elements like rooftop dining or swimming pools. In determining this list, we evaluated customer reviews and recent accolades, as well as personal experience staying at numerous properties on the list.

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