This Luxury Hotel Is One of the Best in London — With Elegant Suites, 'Bridgerton'-themed Afternoon Tea, and 24-hour Butler Service

It doesn't get more quintessentially British than this iconic hotel.

The Lanesborough London exterior with black drapes to mourn The Queen

Annie Archer

I landed in London during a period of mourning for the late Queen Elizabeth II. The city was full of tributes, with parks overflowing in flowers. Even the hotel I was staying in had black drapes wrapped around its front pillars in her honor. 

I was in town at a historic moment. And I was staying at The Lanesborough, a historic mansion turned world-class boutique hotel managed by the Oetker Collection.

Great Hall seating at The Lanesborough London

Courtesy of The Lanesborough

Voted as one of the best hotels in London in Travel + Leisure's 2022 World's Best Awards, the property is a top choice for travelers seeking stylish accommodations. In fact, A-listers like Sylvester Stallone, Arnold Schwarzenegger, Cher, Madonna, and even the late her majesty the Queen have all stayed there.

As a first-time visitor, I would discover over the next few days that The Lanesborough is quintessentially English. I loved its location in Knightsbridge, a posh residential district, across from Wellington Arch on the corner of Hyde Park, only a short walk from the city’s most iconic royal landmarks and shopping centers.

Other highlights include a cognac and cigar lounge, Bridgerton-themed afternoon tea, and round-the-clock butler service.

Restaurant dining seating at The Lanesborough in London

Annie Archer

One adorable and unexpected touch: the property’s resident cat, Lilibet, who joined The Lanesborough family in June 2019. With a small team of employees (known as the Cat Committee) dedicated to her care, this Siberian cat is arguably the most well-pampered feline in all of London, the staff told me.

I stayed in one of the Belgravia Suites, refurbished with luxurious touches like paneled walls and furniture made of rich mahogany complemented by hand-painted Regency-era detailing in the fabrics and artwork. It feels like taking a step back in time, but there’s no shortage of modern perks, too. The in-room tablet on my nightstand could pretty much do it all, from controlling the lights and curtains to making restaurant reservations and requesting butler service.

Belgravia suite interior at The Lanesborough London

Annie Archer

My favorite spot was The Library Bar, which felt like an intimate living room, but is one of London’s most exclusive cocktail destinations, famous for its impressive selection of cognacs dating back to the 1770s. Tip: Order the Gaspari Manhattan — it was easily the smoothest cocktail I’ve ever tasted. By the second round, I opted for the mellower, classic Maestro Margarita, complete with Dobel Silver tequila and a touch of Creyente mezcal, shaken with agave nectar and freshly squeezed lime juice.

The Tube station, conveniently located across the street, also made it easy to venture outside the neighborhood and explore London’s famous landmarks by day and pubs by night. I was also able to take advantage of the theater district ("Dear Evan Hansen" did not disappoint). 

All in all, while planning my trip to London, I dreamed of staying somewhere thoroughly English and effortlessly posh, and I can confidently say The Lanesborough delivered on both fronts.

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