One property that has remained a firm favourite since opening in December 2012 is The Wellesley in Knightsbridge. As London‘s first boutique-grand hotel, The Wellesley attracts those looking for a comfortable, intimate setting rather than the grand, expansive confines of London’s larger hotels. The Wellesley is a 1920s townhouse beautifully restored with a modern take on the art deco style and with every modern convenience. The hotel is named after Sir Arthur Wellesley, the first Duke of Wellington. He was a fine military leader who served as the Prime Minister of Great Britain twice between 1828 and 1834, and later as leader of the House of Lords. His statue stood atop the original Marble Arch commissioned by King George IV to commemorate victory in the Napoleonic Wars.
Overlooking the Royal Hyde Park amidst the glamour of Knightsbridge, The Wellesley combines sophisticated luxury with captivating grandeur and uncompromising service. The Wellesley offers just 36 rooms and suites for the most elite, discerning traveler. The role of the staff is central to your experience at The Wellesley. The team is known for impeccable knowledge and unparalleled discretion.
Plush and richly detailed, the hotel’s 36 rooms are decorated in Art Deco style with glossy black design. In keeping with the 1920’s theme, each guestroom is named after the celebrated figures of the era, such as Charlie Chaplin or Josephine Baker. Gilded ornaments arranged in sleek geometric lines are found throughout the building, which was originally used as part of the underground station between 1906 and 1932. The rooms and suites feel lavish and decadent without being overwrought. Finished in veined Carrara marble, bathrooms are glamorous affairs decked out with Hermes toiletries and vintage photographs from Vogue. Most finished in golds, ivories and champagnes with some featuring crescent-shaped couches and lacquered coffee tables. Modern amenities are discreetly integrated like curtains operated electronically, a tablet with local information and fast and complimentary Wi-Fi connection.
Across the gleaming marble hallway, visitors will find the hotel’s signature dining spot: The Oval Restaurant. With a maximum of 28 covers, this is the place for exquisite Italian cuisine cooked by Executive Chef Stefano Cioffi. Using simple ingredients to create authentic dishes Chef Stefano prides himself on fine presentation. Although The Oval Restaurant’s wine list offers a wide array of temptations, the best place for a drink in The Wellesley is The Crystal Bar. Flaunting Gatsby era chic, with authentic 1920s furniture and decorative features, the glass display cases here exhibit the hotel’s impressive collection of whiskies and cognac. If you’re partial to a cigar, be sure to head across to The Cigar Lounge. With the largest hotel humidor in Europe, complete with a laser cut marble inlaid map of Cuba on the floor, you’ll find the world’s finest cigars that can be enjoyed in a warmly, inviting space. The Wellesley is also the former home of iconic jazz venue, Pizza on the Park, a heritage best acknowledged in The Jazz Lounge.
The Wellesley has a partnership with Grace Belgravia, London’s only health, wellbeing and lifestyle members club for women. This partnership provides guests with special offers, treatment packages and access to the Grace Gym, Grace Apothecary Bar and Café and the Grace Spa which includes a Eucalyptus Steam and Herbal Sauna. Female guests can choose from a range of packages and treatments to revitalize, rejuvenate and relax. While the partnership with Burlington Arcade enables guests to enjoy an exclusive complimentary historical tour of the arcade from a traditionally dressed Burlington Beadle Guard, and a choice of VIP shopping experiences. Last but not least, exclusively for guests staying at The Wellesley, Guerlain invites guests to experience a unique, personal and bespoke fragrance journey at their exclusive boutique in Harrods Salon de Parfums to discover the perfect scent for you or a loved one. With nearly 800 creations to its name, Guerlain is immensely proud of its unsurpassed olfactory heritage, offering fragrances which represent the quintessence of excellence, luxury and sophistication. Additionally, guests using The Wellesley’s Rolls-Royce drop-off service can avail of scented journeys, to further enhance their journey.
Located in the heart of the lively Knightsbridge borough adjacent to Hyde Park, The Wellesley Hotel offers the perfect mixture of nature and urban retreats. Whether your travels are to escape the hustle and bustle of the city life and enjoy the beautiful gardens of nearby Hyde Park, or you seek an exciting adventure of British site seeing, fantastic shopping and superb nightlife. With attractions such as Buckingham Palace, the Royal Albert Hall and the beautiful boutiques of Sloane Street all within close reach, The Wellesley Hotel is the perfect location for your London getaway.
Deluxe Queen bedrooms are beautifully finished with contemporary touches and elegant artwork that pays homage to the building’s art deco past.These bedrooms are fully accessible, each one has a queen-size bed and en suite bathroom. The Deluxe Queen ensuite bathroom is finished in marble and contains a shower and toiletries for complete home from home comfort.
Deluxe King bedrooms are beautifully finished with contemporary touches and elegant artwork that pays homage to the building’s art deco past. Each Deluxe King bedroom has a king-size bed and every amenity for your comfort and convenience. The Deluxe King ensuite bathroom is finished in marble and contains a shower and toiletries for complete home from home comfort.
The Executive Rooms are beautifully finished with contemporary touches and elegant artwork that pays homage to the building’s art deco past. Each Executive Room has a king-size bed and every amenity for your comfort and convenience. The Executive Room ensuite bathroom is finished in marble and contains a shower and toiletries for complete home from home comfort.
Each junior suite offers spectacular views over Hyde Park. The rooms are beautifully finished with contemporary touches and elegant artwork that pays homage to the building’s art deco past. The spacious open plan bedroom of the Junior Suite contains a single vanity and sofa as well as every amenity for your comfort and convenience. The Junior Suite ensuite bathroom is finished in marble and contains a shower and toiletries for complete home from home comfort.
One Bedroom Suite
With a spacious sitting area that is separate from the bedroom, you will have plenty of room to work and unwind. The rooms are beautifully finished with contemporary touches and elegant artwork that pays homage to the building’s art deco past. Separate from the lounge, the spacious One Bedroom Suite has every amenity for your comfort and convenience. Spacious bathroom with bath, shower and double vanity. In-wall TV in master bathroom for viewing from your bath tub.
Two Bedroom Suite
The two-bedroom suites offer the luxury of space as well as privacy in a stunning setting. The rooms are beautifully finished with contemporary touches and elegant artwork that pays homage to the building’s art deco past. The Two Bedroom Suites are a combination of the Deluxe Rooms, Junior Suites and One Bedroom Suites with adjoining doors. Spacious master bathroom with bath, shower and double vanity in-wall television in master bathroom for viewing from your bath tub. Guest bathroom with bath, shower, single vanity.
The Wellesley Penthouse
The sixth and seventh floors of the hotel are given over to the beautiful Wellesley Penthouse that can be enjoyed as a one, two, three and four bedroom option. With stunning views over Hyde Park this is one of the most luxurious suites in London. The Churchill Suite, part of The Wellesley Penthouse, has its own staircase leading onto a private terrace offering rooftop views over South-West London. The spacious lounge is perfect for board meetings or private dinners for up to 8 guests, includes state-of-the-art technology, a private Humidor and Decanter Bar. Take in the remarkable views over Hyde Park from the lounge and bedroom or the city view from the terrace of the Churchill Suite captures the traditional London rooftop scene. While a guest of The Wellesley Penthouse enjoy 24-hour Butler Service and the complimentary Rolls-Royce drop off service within 2.5 km of the hotel.
Cigar Lounge and Terrace
The Wellesley’s Cigar Lounge is an intimate space and gives the feeling of a private gentleman’s club. At one end of the lounge is a climate controlled room, which is the largest hotel humidor in Europe, showcasing the world’s finest cigars. It is the biggest collection of cigars sold on a stick by stick basis in Europe, many of the cigars being limited edition. The Humidor was commissioned by Italian humidor experts DeArt, in conjunction with Fox Linton and features a laser cut marble inlaid map of Cuba to the floor. Outside, two private covered heated cigar terraces feature open fireplaces, screened by an artificial hedge and covered by a close-fitting canopy. The overall experience promises a unique and intimate atmosphere and delivers on being one of the most exceptional places to enjoy a fine cigar in London.
The Jazz Lounge
The Jazz Lounge has a performance space dedicated for both up-and-coming and high-profile artists. Musicians will share the space with the room’s centre piece, a jazz age-appropriate grand piano, with glamorous backdrop of a beaded crystal screen and opulent dusty pink curtains. The screen itself inspired by the delicate beading details of a 1920s Chanel flapper style gown. Every Thursday, Friday and Saturday, guests can enjoy an evening of live music and fine dining at Live at The Wellesley.
All guests can make use of a complimentary Rolls-Royce drop-off service for local journeys within 2.5 km of the hotel.
The Wellesley offers the perfect setting for an understated, private function in Knightsbridge. Transforming the chic Jazz Lounge into a private space which can be adjusted to suit your needs, the private function space is an ideal venue for a special birthday, intimate celebration or business gathering. Guests dining in The Wellesley’s private function room can expect impeccable food and wine, and a personalised service. Guests can choose from a selection of dishes from the restaurant’s main menu or can experience a menu especially designed to suite the occasion.
The history of The Wellesley:
The Wellesley is a 1920s townhouse beautifully restored with a modern take on the Art Deco style and with every modern convenience. The hotel is named after Sir Arthur Wellesley, the first Duke of Wellington. He was a fine military leader who served as the Prime Minister of Great Britain twice between 1828 and 1834, and later as leader of the House of Lords. His statue stood atop the original Marble Arch commissioned by King George IV to commemorate victory in the Napoleonic Wars.
The building, which began its life as the Hyde Park Corner underground (Tube) station by architect Lesley Green, is also the former home of iconic jazz and cabaret venue, Pizza on the Park. It reopened as The Wellesley in December 2012 as an intimate luxury hotel. The design, by Fox Linton Associates, acknowledges the potent association with the building’s decadent jazz musical legacy and has been beautifully restored with a modern take on the Art Deco style. It now offers contemporary luxury and traditional glamour in one of London’s most prestigious locations, immediately adjacent Hyde Park on Knightsbridge.
When to go:
It’s always time to visit London. It gets cold in the winter but rarely snowed in. It gets warm in the summer but rarely blisteringly so (in fact, most buildings don’t even have air-conditioning). The winter months are generally more humid than the summer ones but experience only slightly more rain. You don’t come to London for the weather. It can rain at any time; there’s no dry season here. Daytime temperatures can range from -1° to 35° C but they rarely stay below 2° C or above 26° C for too long. Evenings are usually cool, even in summer, but hot July and August days can be muggy particularly on the Underground, which is not air-conditioned. The principal art season (for theater, concerts, art shows) falls between September and May, leaving the summer months for festivals and park-going. A few royal attractions, such as the state rooms of Buckingham Palace, are only open in the summer when the Queen decamps to Scotland. In summer, when the weather is warmest, the sun sets after 10pm and half of Europe takes its annual holiday and the queues for most of the tourist attractions, such as the London Eye and the Tower of London, might make you wish you’d come in March. For decent prices and lighter crowds, go in spring or fall, April and October seem to have the best confluence of mild weather, pretty plantings, and tolerable crowds. Everything is quietest in mid-winter but a number of minor sights, such as historic houses, sometimes close from November to March and the biggest annual events take place during the warmer months.
At the Oval Restaurant you can expect authentic Italian dishes, thoughtful presentation and impeccable service. Connoisseurs of fine wines will be well served with an expertly curated list of vintages as well as a bespoke cocktail list. Dining at The Wellesley is about enjoying each moment and we have options to suit every mood and occasion. Head Chef Sebastiano Cioffi has devised authentic Italian menus with an emphasis on seasonality and fresh flavours.
The exclusive Crystal Bar at The Wellesley brings the decadence and glamour of the 1920’s vividly to life in the heart of London’s Knightsbridge. The walls of the lavish Crystal Bar are adorned with glass unique display cases containing The Wellesley’s impressive selections of whisky, cognac and Armagnac collections, including a number of extremely rare bottles from 1770. Their passionate bar team can create a cocktail of your choice or you may choose from the vast selection of classic cocktails on the menu. A food menu is also available. Enjoy a crisp glass of Champagne or take advantage of the large selection of Cognacs and whiskies that take pride of place in a specially designed feature wall.
The Wellesley Afternoon Tea
Served daily from 2pm, Afternoon Tea at The Wellesley offers elegant to partake in the glamorous surroundings of the Jazz Lounge. Moments from bustling Knightsbridge, guests can enjoy the sounds of live piano, performed daily from 3pm to 5pm. Pastry chef Cristiano Paolini has crafted an enticing menu that combines the classic with the contemporary and is well suited to teas that have been hand selected from the world’s prime estates.
There is no more glamorous area of London than Knightsbridge, bordered on one side by beautiful parkland, and on the other by the capital’s most sophisticated shopping district and iconic landmarks such as the Royal Albert Hall and Kensington Palace. Located in the heart of the lively Knightsbridge borough adjacent to Hyde Park, The Wellesley Hotel offers the perfect mixture of nature and urban retreats. Hyde Park is one of the largest parks in London, and one of the Royal Parks of London. With attractions such as Buckingham Palace, the Royal Albert Hall and the beautiful boutiques of Sloane Street all within close reach, The Wellesley Hotel is the perfect location for your London getaway.
Visit Buckingham Palace – During August and September, Her Majesty The Queen leaves London for her annual visit to Scotland. In this period, the nineteen state rooms are open to the visitors. This is a great occasion to visit Her Majesty’s office and residence. The State Rooms are the most important part of the palace and are magnanimously furnished with some of the greatest treasures from the Royal Collection, paintings by Rembrandt, Rubens, Poussin and Canaletto; sculpture by Canova; exquisite examples of Sèvres porcelain; and some extremely fine pieces of furniture from England and France.
Big Ben – Although commonly thought to be the nickname for the clocktower at the north end of the Palace of Westminster, Big Ben is actually the name for the bell inside of the tower. No matter what you call it, a visit to London wouldn’t be complete without stopping by.
Theatre – London‘s theatre scene is regarded as being one of the best in the world, only comparable with that of Broadway in New York. With new shows opening throughout the year, there is always a performance to suit all tastes. Dramas, comedies, musicals, London truly is the home of theatreland.
Visit Art Galleries – London boasts four World Heritage Sites and hundreds of art galleries, the majority offering free admission making this city a must for culture vultures. London‘s major galleries are home to works by some of the world’s most famous artists.
Explore the Borough Market – London’s oldest food market, Borough Market is a foodie’s paradise offering an eclectic mix of produce, with artisan breads, great cheeses, green grocers offering fresh produce and specialist butchers and fishmongers.
We love London and think you will too, if you give it a chance. New York might be the city that never sleeps, but London follows pretty close behind. London: globally significant for being a central hub of finance, culture, history, not to mention shopping. As such, there is no shortage of fabulous places to stay like The Wellesley Hotel. Overlooking The Royal Hyde Park amidst the glamour of Knightsbridge, The Wellesley is London’s finest boutique-grand hotel. Its 36 bedrooms and suites combine sophisticated luxury with captivating grandeur and uncompromising service. The Wellesley is also home to some of London’s most exquisite and intimate bars and restaurants including Crystal Bar and Oval Restaurant. The Art Deco styled hotel boasts the finest Italian food, outstanding service; stylish live music performances and a distinguished collection of the world’s finest spirits and cigars. However in case you have doubts about London, the following four things you need to know about London, will, we are sure, win you over:
London is not only cheap, but most of it is free!
It’s the stereotype that we hate the most: “London is super expensive”. If you really know where to look, London is actually cheaper than other European capitals. At the National Gallery, you can admire work by Picasso, Monet, Manet, Van Gogh, and Renoir; and that’s just in one exhibit! At the Tate Modern, the most popular modern art museum in the world, you can see works by Dali or Liechtenstein, and then have fun exploring the installments around the gallery itself, housed in a massive old power station. Head to the Victoria and Albert Museum, the Natural History Museum, the National Portrait Gallery, or even The British Library, where you’ll find the Canterbury Tales, the Rosetta Stone and the Magna Carta. All of these spots are world-class, and all of them are free. And the rest of London’s most famous attractions are best viewed from the outside, so you can admire St. Paul’s Cathedral, Trafalgar Square, the Tower Bridge, Big Ben, Buckingham Palace and the sprawling Royal Parks without paying one pence.
London cannot be “done” in a few days!
One of the greatest things about London is that all of its main attractions are in the centre and within walking distance or a few stops from each other. But that’s only the London of the guidebooks: the real spirit of the city is found in its local boroughs, spend a night partying in Camden Town, where everyone from Dylan Thomas to Amy Winehouse have lived and played. Take a stroll along the riverbanks of Putney or Kingston-Upon-Thames, or search for a Banksy mouse painted onto a wall in Shoreditch. Ride a bike along the canals of Hackney, play football in Richmond Park, and have a Sunday Roast in Wimbledon while you chat with the locals. After all, they’re the ones who make this city so special, and they’re not hanging out in Trafalgar Square; so once you check a few sights off your list, venture a stop or two further on the tube to discover everything else that London has to offer.
Transportation: it might be hot and crowded, but it’s efficient!
In order to get out to the local boroughs, you need to take public transportation. Fortunately, London has one of the best systems in Europe, despite what locals, fed up with tube strikes and engineering works, might say. It is relatively quick, easy to navigate and reliable. Buy an Oyster Card to quickly touch in and out of buses and tubes. The best part of the London transport system is that it’s an experience in itself: who hasn’t dreamed of riding past Trafalgar Square in a red double-decker bus? Or hearing a proper British accent advising people in tube stations to “Mind the Gap” or “Alight here”? Or emerging from the depths of Bond Street Station to the wonderful chaos of Oxford Street? You can even make your own tour out of it: pick a random station on the tube map and go exploring. It will take you to places you’ve never heard of, and you’ll end up finding a little part of the city that feels like it belongs just to you.
You don’t have to visit any other city in the world!
Fancy an authentic Indian curry? Visit Brick Lane in London’s East End. Want to experience a quaint British village? Check out the pubs and boutiques of Hampstead Heath. Want to eat plantains and visit a bustling Jamaican hair salon? Head straight to Peckham Rye. Want to take a boat ride along a shady canal? Look for little Venice near Camden Town. The world’s best literature, history, and architecture, the most progressive restaurants, shopping and nightlife, and the most beautiful parks, churches and monuments, can all be found in London. Yes, there’s something to suit every taste. There’s no better way to express what this city has in store for you than to quote the stereotype that I love the most: “When a man is tired of London, he is tired of life.”