Last week I was invited to take a look around the recently opened The Wellesley Hotel in Knightsbridge. I had popped in a few months ago when it was just a building site and I was very excited to return, to see the end result.
But before I take you on a tour with my photos, let me give you some interesting facts about the hotel. They’ll explain why I think this place is pretty special.
Each guest staying at this 36-room boutique hotel will have complimentary use of The Wellesley’s Rolls Royce for journeys within two miles of the area. Guests will also receive 24-hour butler service, Samsung tablets in their rooms and a Wellesley mobile phone to use whilst staying at the hotel.
When you walk into the building the first thing to hit you is the sumptuous art deco interior, of which I am a huge fan.
To your right you have The Crystal Bar, which houses an impressive array of cognac (some dating back to the 1770s), whiskies and champagne. The 1920s-inspired cocktails list is also very inviting.
The bar leads out onto an outdoor terrace with gorgeous leather seats. This isn’t a place you would want to leave in a hurry.
Across the corridor, in the hotel, is the Cigar Lounge and Terrace. And if you know any cigar fans, you might have to let them know that The Wellesley houses the largest bespoke hotel humidor in Europe and the biggest collection of cigars sold on a stick-by-stick basis in the world.
I stepped into the humidor and whilst I don’t know too much about cigars, I do recognise an impressive collection when I see one.
Some of the boxes which store the cigars were impressive in their own right and I could imagine a cigar aficionado having plenty of fun browsing this collection.
After a look around, we stopped into the Oval Restaurant for lunch. With seating for 28 diners, I loved the intimacy of this venue as well the design.
The Italian menu inspired by seasonal ingredients was also a real delight to try.
For starters, I chose the roasted vegetable salad with goats cheese.
For main I had the pappardelle with wild boar.
And for dessert, I had to try the apple tart with Armagnac ice cream.
Needless to say, attention to detail was integral to the presentation of these dishes. But the pleasures of lunch didn’t end there. The flavours and the quality of the fresh ingredients also elevated lunch to a more delectable level, which was topped off by these sweet offerings at the end.
Unfortunately for me but fortunately for the hotel the bedrooms and suites were occupied, so I couldn’t take any photos this time round. But here is a photograph of one of the rooms, from my last visit – to give you some idea.
And whilst I have no immediate reason to check into this hotel, I am intrigued by their jazz bar where Afternoon Tea is also served. The previous venue on this site was the legendary Pizza On The Park where some of the most revered jazz musicians have played. So it seems only fitting that The Wellesley Hotel would want to continue the musical legacy of this location by showcasing both established and up-and-coming acts in their Jazz Room. And that is exactly what they are doing. To find out more, have a look at The Wellesely’s website. This is truly a gorgeous hotel.