Christmas Day in Kensington

It has been several years since I last stayed in London for Christmas. Either I’ve been in the countryside with the OH’s family or in the Philippines with mine. But with so much having happened this year, from my father’s death to the birth of my baby boy – and everything else in between – I decided that I wanted to stay locally and keep it low key. The OH and I also wanted to focus on being together with our baby boy for his first Christmas, which we were so excited about.

An opportunity came up through work which meant that we could stay at The Kensington Hotel from Christmas Eve until Boxing Day and which also meant I could introduce the OH to a few local traditions …

The Kensington Hotel - Christmas… such as Christmas Carols at the Brompton Oratory where baby boy was christened.

Kensington - Brompton OratoryChristmas in Kensington and Chelsea is always a treat. I guess because it is so quiet. It’s great to be able to walk around the area, feeling like you have the whole place to yourself.

Christmas in South KensingtonThe highlights of our Christmas stay were easily the food and drink at the hotel. It’s been a while since I’ve ordered from The Kensington Hotel’s cocktail menu and on Christmas Eve I came across a true gem, which you will love if you’re as much of a fan of the Dirty Martini as I am.

This cocktail is called the Smoky-Tini and includes Bombay Sapphire gin, Martini Extra Dry, Lapsang Souchong tea leaves with smoked salmon. I love savoury cocktails and this was divine.

Kensington - Smoky-Tini CocktailThe Christmas lunch also felt like a real treat. For starter I had the langoustine cocktail, which was not only tasty but was also satisfying in bite and texture.

The Kensington Hotel - Langoustine CocktailFor main, it felt great to not have to have turkey. I know it’s tradition but I’m really not a fan of this bird. So instead, I opted for the beef fillet with foie gras and an extra side of veggies which really hit the spot. Accompanied by a bottle of Malbec, this was exactly the Christmas lunch I wanted.

The Kensington Hotel - Christmas lunchAnd for dessert, I opted for the chocolate tart with clementines in Madeira. The flavour of the alcohol tasted subtle and complimented the citrus fruit perfectly. It was a fantastic end to a great meal.

The Kensington HotelThe best thing about doing a staycation is waking up on the morning of checking out …

The Kensington Hotel… and not having to go far to be back home. In fact, we didn’t even jump into a taxi. We took a stroll through the streets of Kensington and Chelsea and before we knew it, we were through our front door. I would definitely do a staycation again.

Disclaimer: The Kensington Hotel is a business client and our room was complimentary. But we did pay for the food and drinks – the Christmas lunch at a discounted price – and this did not affect any of my opinions. 

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