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Hotels – Design

Hotels, Hotels - Design, Paris

Hotel du Petit Moulin, Paris

A stay in Paris doesn’t get much more romantic or magical than at Hotel du Petit Moulin in the stylish Haut-Marais.

Housed in what was once one of the oldest boulangeries in Paris, Hotel du Petit Moulin is the very definition of a hidden gem.  Only a few clues give away its hotel status, so it has the intimate feel of a private residence.

The hotel’s charming, 17th-century Parisian architecture is brought to life with creative, otherworldly interiors by renowned couturier Christian Lacroix.  It has a petite, maze-like appearance with just 16 rooms and one junior suite all designed uniquely with bold digital prints, catwalk sketches and sumptuous fabrics.

Hotel du Petit Moulin may seem like an independent hotel, however it has two stunning sister hotels that I’ve also had the pleasure of staying at – Pavillon de la Reine on the nearby Place des Vosges and Pavillon des Lettres.  A perk of this union is that guests are welcome to use the fantastic Spa de la Reine facilities – it’s definitely worth stopping by for a spot of pampering.

Hotel du Petit Moulin has a beautifully-designed lounge with a cosy reading nook as well as an Honesty Bar where breakfast is served in the morning.  Even the corridors have cool design features such as a dress illustration next to our door and monochrome polka-dot carpet that made me think of Yayoi Kusami.

Our Deluxe Room on the third floor was truly atmospheric with an exquisite moon and stars digital print above the bed and soft gold walls.  The popular Moon and Stars Room is often requested by returning guests and I can see why they’ve fallen in love with it.

Room features include a comfy queen-size bed covered in sumptuous linen, large Samsung LCD TV, writing desk, Lacroix illustrated notepad, minibar, air-conditioning, a complimentary bottle of mineral water and free wifi.

The room is unexpectedly spacious with a living area covered entirely with black and white toile de Jouy fabric, offset with pop-style orange felt swivel chairs.  The open wardrobe with plenty of hanging and storage space can also be sectioned off with a curtain and even the light switches have the toile de Jouy pattern for that total immersion effect.

I also loved that some wall edges are covered in mirrors (I never imagined how handy they would be) and that the bedside lights have a sensor, so you simply give them a regal wave to dim or switch off the light, rather than scrambling for the switch.

Most Paris hotel rooms that I’ve stayed in usually feel very contemporary, so it was a real pleasure to look up at the ornate cornice above the bed and fling open the traditional windows to the sounds of the street below in the morning.

The large bathroom has an urban-country feel with cream painted wood-panelled walls, black slate tiles, a deep claw-foot bathtub with shower, extra-wide towels and face cloths, thick bathrobes, slippers and a set of Hermès Eau d’Orange Verte bathroom products.

After a blissful night’s sleep (and a glorious lie-in), we headed down the bar for a typically Parisian breakfast.  The colourful bar has a vintage French feel with a trompe l’oeil statement wall and a traditional zinc bar.

We were served a generous morning feast of fruit salad, French set yoghurt, artisan baguette with President butter and cheese and a basket full of exquisite pastries, with Mariage Frères Earl Grey tea and freshly-squeezed orange juice.

As if that wasn’t enough, there’s also a table with cereal, nuts and fresh fruits that you can help yourself to.  Breakfast is 16 Euros per person and is definitely worth ordering to start the day feeling happy and well-fed – it can also be taken in the comfort of your room.

As Hotel du Petit Moulin is a small hotel, there’s no restaurant, however you can indulge in room service with a menu of French classics such as onion soup and confit duck from a good neighbourhood bistro.

Of course, the Marais is a haven for foodies, so you don’t need to stray too far for a memorable meal.  Nearby, you can find American neo-diner Rachel’s (my Parisian friends rave about the cheesecake), merci’s pizza restaurant Grazie, Le Mary-Celeste cocktail bar, historic foodie spot Le Marché des Enfants Rouge and my two new favourites Profiterole Chérie and Riviera-inspired tapas bar Les Nicois.

This hip part of the Marais is also home to some of the city’s best art galleries, independent boutiques and discount stores for French designer brands such as Alaïa, Zadig & Voltaire and Sandro.  It’s quickly become my favourite part of Paris to stay in for a romantic, relaxing break.

Hotel du Petit Moulin is the perfect urban bolthole that makes you feel immersed in Parisian life.  If you love the Marais, couture fashion and plenty of privacy, this is the place you should call home when in Paris.

Stays at Hotel du Petit Moulin from €195 per room per night, based on two sharing on a B&B basis. +33 1 42 74 10 10.

Chérie City was a guest of Hotel du Petit Moulin

All photos by Chérie City

Hotels, Hotels - Design, London, Restaurants

Hubbard & Bell at The Hoxton Holborn

When my Parisian friends Coralie and Sunny came over to London for a whirlwind birthday trip, I knew exactly where they would be staying.  They’re pretty much Hoxton Hotel regulars now and this was the first time they would be trying The Hoxton Holborn.

Whether we meet in Paris or London, I’m usually tasked with finding a good restaurant for us to catch up in (a duty that I definitely enjoy).

I always look for a buzzing yet informal spot and in the past few years we’ve had dinner at Hotel AmourLa Maison Mère and Ferdi in Paris and Pizza EastPolpo and Off Broadway in London.  These are the kind of places that allow you to chat away long into the evening without being rushed or fussed over too much.

I first tried and loved Hubbard & Bell’s food at the launch party of The Hoxton Holborn, although the restaurant itself had been temporarily transformed for the Backstage Tour immersive theatre event.  So after much deliberating about where to eat in central London on a Saturday night, I said, “err, how about the great restaurant in your hotel?”

We met in the lobby and managed to score a comfy booth table in a cosy spot close to the open kitchen.  It was busy when we arrived and there was a DJ playing Detroit house and disco, although we could still hear ourselves talk easily.

The menu is nice and varied with light bites such as charcuterie and toasts, indulgent burgers, fresh salads, grilled or smoked meats and indulgent porterhouse steak and lobster if you’re splashing out.

Coralie and I both went for a delicious Shrimp Burger (£10).  The juicy shrimp and crab patty was packed full of Thai basil and chilli and had an aromatic flavour.  It was served in a fluffy potato bun with slices of cool avocado, lettuce and a tasty, piquant tomato salsa.

Steven and Sunny both tried a decadent Patty Melt Sandwich (£9).  The high-quality medium-cooked beef was well-seasoned and accompanied by sweet caramelised onions and gooey cheese in buttery, griddled caraway bread.

We ordered a few sides to share, as the vegetables sounded particularly tempting.  Brussels Sprouts (£5) were full of flavour, sautéed with tart sour cherries and pieces of chunky, sweet-cured bacon.

Another veggie hit was Roasted Pumpkin with hazelnut praline (£6).  Thick slices of melt in the mouth pumpkin were perfectly roasted and the crunchy toasted hazelnut praline was a fantastic accompaniment.

The all-round favourite side was Leeks with Taleggio cheese and caramelised onions (£5).  The soft, nicely charred leeks were smothered in a satisfying bechamel sauce and topped with fresh herbs.  It was a comforting winter dish that I would order again and keep all to myself.

Dessert followed the sharing theme and we all went for Americana classics.  Our S’Mores (£6) were simple yet decadent with molten toasted marshmallows and velvety melted milk chocolate, sandwiched between a stack of Graham Crackers and finished with chocolate shavings.

Coralie and Sunny’s PBJ Ice Cream Sundae (£6) looked impressive and seemed to go down very well – I was too enamoured with my S’Mores to demand a spoonful.

We washed everything down with a lovely bottle of Treviso DOC, Luna Argenta Prosecco, which was light, uplifting and ideal for sharing.  As usual, we stayed chatting for ages and Coralie and Sunny had the luxury of rolling upstairs to their room afterwards.

Hubbard & Bell fit the bill perfectly for our catch up dinner and we were all super impressed.  The food and ambiance were both excellent and the staff were attentive and never rushed us, even though it was a busy weekend evening.  I can’t wait to go back and try more of the menu or one of their tempting breakfasts.

Have you tried Hubbard & Bell?  Where do you take your friends when they are in town?

For more information and booking, visit:

Photos by Chérie City (interiors by Hubbard & Bell)

Hubbard and Bell on Urbanspoon

Films, Hotels, Hotels - Design

Force Majeure Preview at Ham Yard Hotel with Curzon Cinemas

Last night, I headed to Firmdale Hotels’ gorgeous Ham Yard Hotel in Soho to celebrate its cool new partnership with Curzon Cinemas.

I visited just before Christmas for an event in the hotel’s cosy Drawing Room and it was a treat to discover more Kit Kemp’s beautifully-designed spaces.

Firmdale Hotels are established hubs for the film industry (I spent a lot of time in their screening rooms when I worked at Sugarscape) and there are always movie stars in residence.  However, while the A-listers are there to work and promote, guests can kick back and relax watching a great film.

Curzon Cinemas selects a programme of the latest cinema releases and a curated selection of contemporary and classic films every Sunday at Ham Yard Theatre.  Films are set to include award-nominated Theory of Everything, Tim Burton’s Big Eyes, Birdman and a special preview of Love is Strange.

The comfy, state-of-the-art, 190-seat theatre is super-slick with Dolby sound and XpanD Digital 3D capable screen.  It’s a high-ceiling space with a mezzanine level and is lined with electric blue walls, bright fuchsia pink silk curtains and quirky tangerine orange leather seats.

We started the evening in the hotel’s cool Dive Bar, where we enjoyed glasses of Champagne and delicious canapés before moving in to the theatre for a special preview screening of Force Majeure.

Directed and written by Ruben Östlund, Force Majeure sees a young, bourgeois Swedish family take a vacation to a luxury ski resort in the French Alps.  After they get caught up in a controlled avalanche gone rogue during lunch on a mountain restaurant terrace, their carefully-constructed relationship starts to unravel.

During this frightening incident, mother Ebba (Lisa Loven Kongsli) tried to protect her children, while her husband Tomas (Johannes Kuhnke) ran away, abandoning them in the drift.  This becomes a major issue that Ebba can’t move past without resolving and Tomas would rather brush under the carpet.

While they clash over each other’s versions of events, the parents go through awkward moments over dinner with hotel guests, hallway breakdowns and their kids’ tantrums.  Of course, the kids can feel the deep-rooted tension and fear their parents divorcing.

Things reach a head when their friend, bearded hipster Mats (Kristofer Hivju), comes out to visit with his 20-year-old girlfriend Fanni (Fanni Metelius).  Unwittingly, they become embroiled in the drama and have to act as mediators.  Despite the marital breakdown and emotional rawness, there are some truly hilarious moments.

Östlund closely explores the roles of men and women in relationships and questions just how instinctive they are.  Ebba resents Tomas for being a ‘coward’ and trying to keep up appearances, while he is incensed by her coldness and airing their dirty laundry in public.

There are some beautifully-shot mountain scenes and I like how Östlund uses avalanche canon blasts, excerpts of Vivaldi’s ‘Storm’ and the breathtaking yet treacherous landscape to heighten the tension.  Even banal activities such as teeth brushing, napping and taking the painfully slow snow travelator back to the resort are given a humorous sense of ritual.

Force Majeure is quite a journey and a darkly funny, engaging film.  It’s definitely deserving of its six Guldbagge awards (Golden Beetles) – the Swedish Oscars- and a must-see film.

Sunday Cinema at Ham Yard, in partnership with Curzon Cinemas, is priced at £15 per person.  Force Majeure is released in the UK in April 2015.  For more information and booking, visit:

Hotels, Hotels - Budget, Hotels - Design, London

A Stay at Urban Villa, West London

As a general rule, hip design hotels can rarely be found on the outskirts of London (least of all perched over the M4), but Urban Villa is set to change that with its first all-suite hotel in Brentford, west London.

The 100-suite hotel is designed by New York architects Grzywinski + Pons, the duo behind downtown gems The Nolitan and The Hotel on Rivington.  Urban Villa has that familiar industrial-luxe aesthetic and bridges boutique hotel hospitality with the convenience of luxury residential living.

The philosophy of Urban Villa is simple – you can either stay in central London and pay partly for the location (and perhaps settle for a less inspiring hotel), or make Urban Villa your base and journey into London as you wish.  It’s also worth noting that on the doorstep is Kew Gardens, Chiswick, Richmond and Twickenham.

The hotel has partnered with Uber to facilitate quick journeys into the city and South Ealing tube is also just 15 minutes and only seven stops away from South Kensington.  It’s also a good choice for staying near Heathrow if you have an early flight.  Brentford doesn’t sound so off the radar now, right?

We visited on Friday for Urban Villa’s grand opening and were treated to a suite for the night.  The best kind of parties are those where you can simply roll up to your room at the end of the night.

The large, open-plan lobby was the centre of the action with fantastic cocktails by Soulshakers, who have curated the drinks for the hotel’s Sour Diesel bar.  It also boasts a Coravin system so that the entire wine list can be served by the glass.

We tucked into the most incredible burgers and millionaire fries by Hereford heroes The Beefy Boys, who had a pop-up grill just outside.  This was simply an indulgence for the opening event, as Urban Villa’s permanent food offering is much more healthy.  BOKI Coffee & Co. serves artisanal drinks using Allpress Coffee and T2 Tea (the French Earl Grey is delicious) as well as craft beers, organic meals and cold-pressed juices.

A cool soundtrack of electro, house and disco came courtesy of DJs Justin Quirk and Lulu Levan.  We also enjoyed live performances from Leeds alt-rock band Glasscaves and a collaboration between rapper and saxophonist Soweto Kinch and jazz trumpeter Jay Phelps.

As an ‘evolving hotel’, Urban Villa is all about the lobby culture and guests can expect a programme of music and events.

Floor nine was full of surprises, as we toured some of the show rooms including the impressive Master Villa.  We sampled T2 matcha tea, Allpress Coffee, fresh cold-pressed juice and delicious cakes all served at BOKI Coffee & Co. and tried the in-room spa treatments by Viva Therapies.

I had a fantastic, long-lasting manicure using OPI Gwen Stefani Red and can highly recommend it as a special treat.  What could be better than a spot of pampering from the comfort of your own room?

At the end of a fabulous bourbon and matcha-fuelled evening, we stumbled back to our Villa on the tenth floor.  The suite was bright and very spacious with a soft colour palette and contemporary-cool furnishings.

Room features include a queen-size bed, 40″ Samsung smart TV, free wifi, a small dining/working table, iPod docking station and a fully-equipped kitchen complete with a Nespresso machine and kettle with Teapigs tea.

There is also free high-speed wifi, inexpensive international phone calls and cool artwork by Lazarides Editions, the world’s leading urban art gallery.

A unique touch is the expansive winter garden with a small seating area and a sunlounger, offering floor to ceiling panoramic views over the city.  It’s rare to get a terrace in any city hotel, let alone one of this size.

Going beyond the standard pillow menu, guests can customise their bed in advance, choosing between a soft, medium or hard mattress.  Ours was medium, I believe, and was very comfortable, although I found the Egyptian cotton linen strangely a little scratchy.

The sleek black and dark wood bathroom is not only sexy but well-equipped with a high-pressure rainfall shower, extra-wide fluffy towels, luxury bathrobes and full-size Malin & Goetz products with intoxicating aromas of rum, cilantro and peppermint.

Other cool features to make you feel at home include an iPad and Xbox loans, an in-room gym kit, same-day laundry service, business facilities and a handy in-room virtual concierge on the TV.

It’s also commendable that Urban Villa is an eco hotel with green initiatives such as paper-less suites and check-in, an untearable ‘do not disturb’ door sign, vertical plant wall in the lobby and recyclable packaging.

Urban Villa is a real game-changer and I loved the slick design, high tech features and thoughtful home comforts.  The hotel’s Great West Quarter location is certainly a ‘work in progress’, but Urban Villa is ahead of the curve and is offering something fresh and different for style-conscious travellers.

Room rates start from £100 for a Studio and £135 for a Master Villa.  For more information and booking, visit:

Chérie City was invited by Urban Villa

Photos by Chérie City and Urban Villa

Hotels, Hotels - Design, Hotels - Luxury, Miami, USA

A Stay at Tides South Beach – Miami

Our recent stay in Miami was a short and sweet weekend break, so we wanted our hotel to be special.

Tides South Beach ticks all of the boxes with an unbeatable Ocean Drive location, boutique feel and an outdoor pool.  It’s a stylish haven in the heart of a buzzing, neon-drenched part of town and just a few steps away from the iconic Miami Beach.

The Miami hotel scene is flourishing with exciting new openings, however Tides South Beach is already an established player and everyone we met on our travels spoke of it affectionately.

Tides South Beach is a true Art Deco hotel with striking architecture that dates back to 1936.  Its plush interiors, designed by Kelly Wearstler, also reflect the glamour of the age with a retro beach-chic look.

The open-plan lobby has a Biba vibe with wide leather sofas, shimmering gold screens, palms, hand-painted tropical murals and an original terrazzo floor.  It’s the kind of space you can imagine appearing in a fashion photo shoot with Tamara de Lempicka-esque models elegantly lounging.

The ground floor also includes The Tides Restaurant and Terrace, where guests can enjoy a complimentary welcome drink to get settled in – a lovely, old school touch.

The mezzanine level overlooks the lobby and leads to the hotel’s outdoor heated swimming pool.  While waiting for our room to be ready, we headed straight to the pool to soak up some sun.  The medium-sized pool has a comfortable temperature for swimming (my pet hotel hate is cold pools) and is flanked by sunloungers with parasols and two cabanas at each end.

You can keep hydrated with complimentary chilled water infused with citrus fruits or order a cocktail, lunch or snacks to enjoy poolside.  Unlike some of Miami’s flashier hotels, the pool is reserved only for hotel guests and we were delighted to find the pool quiet and intimate on Saturday afternoon with only the music from the neighbouring bars below.

Tides South Beach surprisingly has only 45 guest rooms and every one boasts a fantastic ocean view.  Our Signature Ocean Front Studio on a high floor was absolutely enormous and beautifully-designed.

There are so many gorgeous design features to discover, including a most exquisite hammered gold writing desk, petrified log mini coffee tables, a faux zebra-skin rug and a large bronze sun sculpture above the king-size bed.  The low-set bed was very soft and comfortable, with crisp, high quality linen and good pillows.

The windows aren’t great for keeping out the music from the lively Palace Bar next door or impromptu live percussion on the street during the day, however we did sleep very well at night.  We enjoyed watching the bar’s famous drag show after dinner on Saturday, where the pavement outside became a catwalk.  I have to say, I was quite sad to miss their RuPaul’s Drag Race party on the Monday night that we were leaving.

The room features a comfy sofa and chair in the living area, a 42-inch LCD TV, DVD player and iPod docking station, powerful air-conditioning and free wifi.  A highlight is the large separate walk-in wardrobe with a generously-sized fitted wardrobe, storage drawers and room for suitcases, a mini bar and a Nespresso machine, although it’s a shame that the espresso capsules are charged for.

The spacious bathroom is an absolute delight with a beautiful marble sink, a rainfall shower with deep soaking tub, magnifying mirror, plenty of fluffy towels and face cloths, plush waffle bathrobes and a full set of lavender and peppermint bathroom products by C.O. Bigelow.

America’s oldest apothecary brand isn’t easy to find in the UK, so that was a real treat and I really liked the relaxing, aromatic products.

A real perk of staying at Tides South Beach is doing the beach in style with complimentary loungers, towels and an umbrella for guests. Regrettably we didn’t quite find the time for a proper beach session, as it rained non-stop on Sunday and Monday was set aside for exploring.

If you’re in Miami to unwind, you don’t need to venture far and can hop between the beach and the hotel’s swimming pool, followed by dinner on the terrace.

Tides South Beach has an attractive indoor restaurant and bar, but most people choose to make the most of the weather and atmosphere on the terrace.

Almost all of the hotels on this stretch of Ocean Drive have a terrace restaurant with passersby walking through the middle and staff coaxing guests in to dine.  The food looks tempting and there are cheap cocktails the size of your head on offer – it is party central after all.  The terrace can either be delightful or a little congested, depending on the time of day (breakfast is a safe bet).

If you want a more peaceful dining experience, Tides South Beach has a few tables closer to the entrance, so you can observe the scene from above.  Or, you can indulge in 24-hour room service in the comfort of your own studio.

Tides South Beach is a romantic, characterful boutique hotel with an enviable location and fabulously-appointed rooms.  They don’t call it the ‘Diva of South Beach’ for nothing.

For more information and booking, visit:

Photos by Chérie City (pool and terrace by Tides South Beach)

Chérie City received a press rate for the stay


Hotels, Hotels - Design, London, Restaurants

The Backstage Tour at The Hoxton Holborn

The Hoxton Holborn is one of central London’s most exciting new hotel openings, bringing a welcome dose of cool to the area now coined as ‘Midtown’.

The Hoxton Shoreditch was a game-changer on the hotel scene when it opened in 2006 and The Hoxton Holborn takes it to the next level.  It feels very ‘now’ and more like a social hub than simply a hotel, yet there are still some familiar trademarks from the Hoxton brand.

The ‘affordable luxury’ 174-room hotel recently launched with the most spectacular opening event – The Backstage Tour.  The immersive theatre experience, devised by A&B Productions (artist Amy Gadney and producer Bella Macpherson), was the hottest ticket in town that night and gave a rare glimpse of the inner workings of the hotel.  I mean, who hasn’t ever wanted to snoop around a hotel?

On the day of the grand opening, we spent some time exploring our room and then headed down to the lobby in anticipation of what was in store.  After munching on patty melts and sliders, washed down with Champagne, our small group was led to the Cheeky Salon for the beginning of the tour.

As the story goes, we were the lucky viewers of a new play that was set to debut in the hotel in just one hour, however the script-writer and the cast were nowhere to be found.  The formidable Ronni Ancona flounced around as Anamaria Von Viti Obilaska as chaos loomed and runner Sam shepherded us around the hotel – not even the staff corridors were out of bounds.

On the way, we encountered a Champagne-addled famous actor still in his bathrobe, stressed out production managers, a luvvie director and jaded hacks in the ramshackle press conference.  To heighten the drama, some of the ‘guests’ among us were in fact actors propelling the storyline and improvisation.

At the end of the tour, we discovered that we were in fact the entertainment and took our bows on stage in front of an audience applauding with mouths full of rotisserie chicken.

And where better to end up than in in the middle of Chicken Shop – the rustic style Soho House Group restaurant in the basement.  Having performed for our supper (well, kind of), we were then treated to a slap up meal of rotisserie chicken and a side of crinkle cut fries while awaiting the next unsuspecting tour group to hit the stage.

The chicken was so juicy and tender with a sticky glaze and plenty of seasoning.  I loved the buzz of the restaurant, the tasty food and the cosy country-style interiors – perfect for a quick chicken fix.

As if that wasn’t enough, we were invited back upstairs for expertly-mixed cocktails, spicy mini shrimp burgers and desserts of key lime and lemon meringue tartlets.  To round off a perfectly decadent evening, we were happily within stumbling distance of our room – what could be better!

Our Cosy Room (they range from Shoebox to Roomy) was just the right size and had a comfortable, homely feel.  The design is retro and quirky with a posh college dorm feel.  Room features include a vintage-style writing bureau, a sleek Samsung flat screen TV, black Roberts radio, giant circular mirror on the wall, Penguin paperback and ornaments such as a vintage camera and chemistry bottles.

The furnishings are also well-considered and surprisingly plush with a gorgeous leather armchair, leather headboard, graphic cushions and the most amazing wallpaper illustrated with French bulldogs and pineapples by London artist Toby Triumph.

I was delighted to see a kettle with a selection of teas and ground coffee sachets and absolutely adored the Hoxton Holborn mugs and ‘dirty old bag’ china teabag tray.  Both Hoxton hotels have a thoughtful ‘no rip-off’ policy, so other cool extras include free wifi, a fridge with bottles of complimentary mineral water and fresh milk, one hour of free phone calls, free bicycle hire, a free breakfast bag and a lobby shop with items at regular shop prices.

The queen-size bed was nice and comfortable with a thick duvet and pillows that I found a little too thin.  We had a good night’s sleep, however some noise from the corridor and other rooms could be heard at times, not that we were bothered by it.

The small but perfectly formed bathroom has a cool New York feel with ceramic black and white tiles, a walk-in shower with fantastic pressure and a single sink.

The all-important bathroom products have been exclusively created for The Hoxton Holborn by Pen & Ink.  Not only do they look pretty, but they’re free from all chemical nasties and are a dream to use.

In the morning, we were treated to a healthy breakfast bag, which was ready outside our door at the requested time.  Inside was a bottle of freshly-squeezed orange juice, a blackberry and apple granola yoghurt pot and a banana – perfect for a light and tasty breakfast in bed.

For something more indulgent, head downstairs to the hotel’s Brooklyn-style grill Hubbard & Bell for Eggs Benny, Steak and Eggs or Avocado on Sourdough with an artisan coffee or cold-pressed juice.

The Hoxton Holborn is a fantastic, forward-thinking hotel that is sure to attract city break travellers just as much as Londoners popping by for a mani-pedi at Cheeky Salon or a flat white at Holborn Grind.  With fantastic restaurants, cool vibes, no big hotel mark-ups and a central location, it’s set to become a firm favourite.

Rooms at The Hoxton Holborn start from £89 per night.  For more information and booking, visit:

Watch the antics of The Backstage Tour at The Hoxton Holborn here:

THE BACKSTAGE TOUR from The Hoxton on Vimeo.

Chérie City was a guest of The Hoxton Holborn

All photos by Chérie City

Hotels, Hotels - Design, London, Restaurants

Pont St, Belgraves London

It’s always a pleasure to find a restaurant in London that suits you personally and ticks all of the boxes for a perfect night out.  This is how I feel about Pont St, the stylish all-day dining restaurant at Belgraves, a Thompson Hotel.

Overseen by celebrity chef Sophie Michell, Pont St is a chic, low-key spot that feels a million miles away from Knightsbridge’s flashy restaurants.  I love its sleek design, cosy velvet booths, calm atmosphere and lighter approach to cooking.

This summer, I had the pleasure of a staycation at Belgraves and raved about the fantastic breakfast in Pont St, so I was delighted to be invited by Zomato to try out the dinner menu last night.

We had a lovely booth by the window and were swiftly served a light, milky brioche roll (plain or blue cheese) with French butter and flaked sea salt while perusing the menu.  To begin the meal, we ordered two plates from the nibbles menu and one starter to share.

Hot Cheese Balls with quince jelly (£8.50) were comforting and delicious with gooey, oozing mild cheeses encased in crispy, golden breadcrumbs.  The richness was lightened with a sharp, sticky and fragrant quince jelly.

Pork Belly with maple and bourbon glaze (£5.50) was a little plate of heaven with tightly-packed layers of lean meat and melt-in-the-mouth fat.  The bites were well-seasoned with subtle flavours of anise and the sweet, smoky glaze caramelised the edges.

They were quickly followed by the Seared Beef Carpaccio with truffle cream, Parmesan crisps, turnip and watercress (£13.50).  The thin slices of high quality beef had a very clean, pure flavour and were topped modestly with a few dots of silky truffle cream (the truffle flavour was very subtle), flavoursome Parmesan crisps, slim and crunchy turnip and fresh watercress.

For the main course, I was tempted by the Roasted Label Anglais Chicken with celeriac gratin, heirloom carrots and pickled cherries (£19.50).  Some may say that chicken isn’t the most dynamic dish to order at a restaurant, but this was an absolute delight with complex flavours.

The premium chicken breast was tender and juicy (though the skin could have been a little crispier) and accompanied by the most visually-pleasing, fragrant heirloom carrots.  I loved the delicious squares of slow-cooked celeriac gratin, which were infused with fresh herbs and not too heavy on the cream.  The dish was punctuated with tart pickled cherries and a mouth-watering chicken and onion sauce.

Steven’s ‘Cod & Chips’ with plancha cod, crushed peas, tartare salad and polenta fries (£17.50) was a healthy take on the classic comfort dish.  The substantial piece of cod was beautifully cooked on the plancha grill for a crispy skin and a succulent, flaky fillet.  The freshly-crushed peas had just a touch of fresh mint and the generous amount of polenta fries were light and creamy with a golden, crunchy outside.

The desserts at Pont St are particularly tempting and I couldn’t resist trying the Doughnut Balls with salted caramel and vanilla milkshake (£6.50).

The five plump mini doughnuts were on the larger side of bite-size and were filled with molten, super-sweet salted caramel.  The gorgeous vanilla milkshake added a nostalgic touch and perfectly complemented the indulgent doughnuts.

Steven tried the Nutmeg Custard Tart with poaches apples and sultanas.  The cool, luxurious custard was thick and ever so creamy with plenty of fresh vanilla, though I didn’t detect much nutmeg.  The buttery pastry was exceptionally good and we liked the addition of spiced, stewed apples.

We finished with pots of Earl Grey and Jasmine JING tea and lingered a while to enjoy the calm atmosphere.  If you want to carry on the evening, head to the bar or outdoor terrace at Belgraves.

Pont St is a gem of a restaurant and its intimate, relaxed vibe feels just right for this well-heeled, villagey part of Belgravia.  The staff are friendly and efficient and the maitre d’ is a quite a character, who really livened up the dining experience.  It has definitely joined my list of favourite restaurants in London.

For more information and booking, visit:

See the menu on Zomato.

Chérie City was a guest of Pont St & Zomato

Photos by Chérie City (interiors by Pont St)

Barcelona, Hotels, Hotels - Design, Restaurants

SALT at W Barcelona

W Barcelona is one of the city’s most striking contemporary luxury hotels, towering over the Barceloneta beach.

Designed by Catalan architect Ricardo Bofill, the shimmering glass and metal structure has a distinctive sail shape and is one of the city’s tallest buildings.  It’s where Barcelona’s chic set hang out, boasting a fabulous pool scene and hot restaurants including Carles Abellan’s BRAVO24.

On our first night in Barcelona, we spent the evening at SALT, the hotel’s casual, seafront dining spot which includes a restaurant and bar, terrace and beach club.

Designed by Isabel López Vilalta, SALT has a romantic, boho-chic beach look with a pale wood deck, slouchy sofas, twinkling lights, canopies and highlights of azure.  It has a cool, laid-back Ibiza vibe with summer DJ sets and a beach area made using imported powder white sand (the Barceloneta is an urban beach, after all).

Sadly you don’t have the opportunity to step inside the impressive hotel itself when dining at SALT, however that may be a bonus if you just want to go straight from the sea to the sofas in a kaftan with sexy beach hair.

Chef Sergio Dominguez’s tantalising cuisine is Californian meets Mediterranean and ranges from healthy grazing dishes to indulgent comfort food.

We had a fantastic table on the terrace where we could watch the runners and skateboarders on the boardwalk and enjoy a stunning sunset.  We were warmly greeted by our friendly waiter, who like many restaurant staff we met during our trip, had lived for a few years in London and had recently moved back to Barcelona.  I imagine the beach, warm weather and outdoor lifestyle are good incentives to return – life here certainly seems appealing.

We started the meal with a tasty Catalan classic of Croquettes (€9), which were served piping hot.  They had a crispy, golden breadcrumb coating and were filled with a moreish mixture of shredded meat, potato and cheese.  The smooth aioli dip had just the right amount of garlic and was a mouthwatering accompaniment.

Also from the grazing menu, we shared the Cod Steak (€14).  The plump, flaky supreme of cod was beautifully-grilled and ever so fresh.  Its acccompanying Romesco sauce (a speciality from Tarragona) was light, tangy and smoky with flavours of red pepper, almonds and punchy vinegar.  It dressed the sliced potatoes well and livened up the cod, plus the portion size was generous for a starter.

While there are plenty of health choices on the menu like ceviche and superfood salads, SALT is all about the gourmet burgers.  I ordered the Classic Angus (€17), which came served on a wooden board with a slate hot plate.  The enormous monster burger had a juicy, thick and mature Angus beef patty and was cooked medium as requested.

It was packed inside a sweet toasted sesame bun and garnished with gooey Cheddar cheese, two rashers of smoky bacon, a flavoursome sundried tomato relish, creamy avocado and fresh salad.  The fries were plentiful, crisp and nicely salted, but they didn’t really stand out.

Steven went for the Angus Twist (€18) and also acquired some of my burger that I couldn’t quite finish.  The Angus Twist had French-Japanese influences with oozing brie, peppery wasabi mayo, very subtle air-dried tuna and peppery wasabi mayo (€18).  Both burgers were satisfying and full of flavour, but the Classic Angus had the slight edge with the combination of Cali-style ingredients.

Midway through our burgers, we felt a few tiny droplets of rain (the only ones of our trip) and immediately the electric roof covered over the terrace.  Even if the weather isn’t perfect, you can still enjoy al fresco dining without facing the elements.

Deciding between the tempting desserts might’ve been challenging, but the chefs saved us the trouble with a fabulous sharing platter of mini treats.

My favourite was the Sweet burger – a velvety dark chocolate ‘patty’ studded with toasted hazelnuts, packed between a moist sponge ‘bun’ and covered in juicy mango, raspberry sauces.  Another highlight was the SALT Townie – a luscious chocolate fudge brownie baked in a tart, which was incredibly decadent and rich.

The Cheesecake sundae was light and sugary while the Catalan Creme was a classic done exceedingly well, with a burnt sugar crust and chocolate chip biscotti for dipping.

We were both a little tired from a full day of travelling to sample the cocktails, but the well-edited menu of classics with a twist is definitely worth checking out.  We did however enjoy some fresh mint tea to round off the excellent meal and took a long stroll along the seafront to walk off the burgers.

SALT is a fabulous spot on the Barceloneta for a chilled-out, stylish meal or low-key drinks.  From the cool lounge music to the beach-luxe design and charming staff, SALT just gets everything right.  There are plenty of beachfront restaurants and snack shacks dotted along the coastline, but SALT is rather special and an ideal choice for a memorable sundown dinner.

For more information and booking, visit:

Chérie City was invited by SALT at W Barcelona

Photos by Chérie City & SALT at W Barcelona

Competitions, Hotels, Hotels - Design, Restaurants

Win a Meal for Two at Evoluzione, Hotel Xenia – London

Hotel Xenia opened in chic South Kensington last year, set across a row of charming Victorian townhouses.  It boasts an enviable Cromwell Road address and is close to the V&A, Natural History Museum, Kensington Gardens and Knightsbridge designer shopping.

The cosy, contemporary boutique hotel houses Evoluzione, a stylish Italian restaurant with a bar counter and outdoor terrace.  It’s overseen by Michelin star chef Andrea Angeletti, who gained the prestigious accolade for his cooking at Le Busche in the Marche region of Italy.

Angeletti’s culinary philosophy focuses on respect for tradition and using seasonal products, while exploring creativity with new tastes and flavours.

The menu is full of tempting dishes such as Roasted octopus with potatoes, aubergine and crispy sesame waffle and Hereford tagliata with sweet and sour onions and rocket pesto, followed by Hot orange sponge with aubergine cream and extra-virgin olive oil.

Chérie City has partnered with the lovely folk at Zomato to offer the chance to WIN a voucher worth £100 for a meal for two at Evoluzione at Hotel Xenia.

To enter, simply head over to Twitter and retweet the following message:

Win a meal for two worth £100 to @EvoluzioneLDN compliments of @Zomato & @cheriecity. Simply RT & follow #zomp

Zomato is one of the fastest-growing websites and social networks purely for foodies.  It’s a fun, user-friendly place to share reviews and photos of your dining experiences across the world.  I use it to share my favourite restaurants, find the latest openings and keep track of the restaurants on my wish list – it can become a little addictive!

So what are you waiting for?  Enter the twitter competition and be sure to share your dining experience on Zomato.

Terms & conditions:
Competition closes end of 10/10/14
The winner will be offered a voucher worth £100 to dine at Evoluzione at Hotel Xenia, London.
The voucher can only be used once and if the full value is not used, no change will be given.
No cash alternative will be offered
Travel and transport are not included
Voucher expires 15/11/14

All photos by Hotel Xenia

Bars, Hotels, Hotels - Design, Paris, Restaurants

Dinner at Hotel Amour, Paris

The restaurant at Hotel Amour is one of my favourite spots in Paris for a fun, stylish night out.

Tucked away on rue Navarin in hip South Pigalle (SoPi), Hotel Amour is an affordable boutique hotel with a popular restaurant and terrace.  Co-owned by the inimitable graffiti artist and entrepreneur André Saraiva (Le Baron, La Fidelité, Monsieur A.) and Thierry Costes, the hotel is always buzzing with a cool crowd of Parisian creatives, fashion folk and clued-up travellers.

Many of the rooms are designed by artists such as Pierre Le-Tan, Mark Newson and Sophie Calle and there’s plenty of erotic artwork to live up to the hotel’s name – it is in racy Pigalle, after all.

Sure, new hotels and restaurants open in Paris all the time, but there’s something timeless and sexy about Hotel Amour – it never seems to go out of style.

I knew there was nowhere else I wanted to spend my recent 30th birthday than the restaurant at Hotel Amour.

Not only does it have a great atmopshere, a romantic garden and good food, but there are also tons of great bars nearby (check out Glass, Dirty Dick, Chez Moune, Le Dépanneur and Le Mansart).  Also, we were conveniently staying in the neighbourhood at the delightful Hotel Josephine.

We caught up with our Parisian friends Coralie and Sunny, who managed to secure us a fantastic table on the terrace overlooking the lush outdoor garden.  The evening started on a high with an unexpected birthday present for me – a very Parisian boho-luxe leather purse (Coralie has excellent taste in accessories).

We began by ordering some cocktails – Coralie and I both went for a deliciously sweet Amaretto Sour topped with toasted almonds while Sunny and Steven went for the stronger, sharper Godfather Sour.

After ordering, we were brought a basket of really good rustic bread served with a pot of French salted butter.  The butter covers are printed with the cool Hotel Amour logo and even the wine glasses are engraved with André’s signature scrawl – they sure know a thing or two about branding.

Being indecisive and deep in conversation, it took us a while to decide what to order, but our charming waitresses were so relaxed and patient.  As usual, I was tempted by the Cheeseburger (€19), which was cooked perfectly medium and spiked with a jazzy cocktail stick.  The lean, well-seasoned beef patty was smothered in gooey cheese and packed in a seeded demi-brioche bun.

Happily, they came with a big bowl of crispy, delicious French fries – in fact the portion size was so generous that I could easily share them with the table.  On other occasions, I’ve ordered the Poulet Roti (€19), which is equally moreish and comforting.

Coralie and Steven both ordered the Gratin de Macaronis au jambon blanc (16.50).  The long tubes of macaroni were perfectly cooked and baked with thick-carved, flavoursome ham and lots of cream, Emmental and Gruyère.  The portion size wasn’t particularly big, but the richness of the dish made it a satisfying choice.

Sunny’s Salade de Légumes (€18) took quite a while to arrive after a Salade Nicoise was mistakenly sent out.  Luckily, there were plenty of fries and bread to munch on while he was waiting.

It seemed only fair that Sunny’s Chocolate Ganache (€9.50) dessert was the clear winner.  The velvety, decadent milk chocolate ganache was served on a cookie crumb and topped with toasted hazelnuts and a sprinkling of sea salt.

Coralie ordered a classic Café Gourmand (with a Mariage Frère tea instead of coffee), which included a platter of four nicely-presented mini desserts.  Steven and I shared a large slice of home-made Crème Caramel.  It tasted fantastic but it was comically unattractive – a large slab of bubbly cream sitting in a moat of light caramel sauce, rather than the petite, quivering desserts that I’ve had before in Paris brasseries.

Hotel Amour is great for a spot of people-watching, catching up with friends or enjoying a few cocktails on the terrace.  There’s room for improvement, but its charm always wins me over and I know I’ll be lured back there time and time again.

For more information and booking, visit:

Photos by Chérie City & Hotel Amour Paris

Hotels, Hotels - Design, Restaurants

Salthouse Harbour Hotel, Suffolk

Salthouse Harbour Hotel is a contemporary boutique hotel with lots of character, nestled on the quayside of Ipswich Harbour.

It’s the perfect spot for a relaxing weekend getaway, located just over an hour away from London by train and five minutes from the train station in a taxi.  Beyond enjoying the tranquility of the marina, you can explore Suffolk’s rolling countryside and pretty beaches, as well as Ickworth House, St Edmundsbury Cathedral and retro Southwold Pier.

We visited Salthouse Harbour Hotel (part of Gough Hotels) on a sunny Saturday and the hotel was already busy with hotel guests and locals enjoying afternoon tea, lunch on the terrace and lazy drinks in the lounge.  The quayside was filled with people taking a weekend stroll in the sun or soaking up the sun on their boats.

On arrival, we were given a warm welcome and check-in was swift and friendly.  We were lucky enough to be assigned the Penthouse Suite, which was impressive and sophisticated with a slanted ceiling and floor-to-ceiling views of the marina.

The bright and homely suite is designed in neutral colours with vintage furniture and attractive fabrics.  The large living room features a gorgeous chaise-longue, leather armchair, coffee tables, stunning lamps made from driftwood, large working desk with a retro silver telephone and a flatscreen TV.

A lovely feature is the complimentary tea and coffee making facilities with fresh cafetiere coffee and cool mugs by graffiti artist Pure Evil.  We were even welcomed with a handwritten note and a box of retro gummy bears.

The open-plan bedroom is spacious yet cosy with a very comfortable king-size bed with crisp linen and plenty of cushions.  Other room features include a  Bose iPod dock, a spacious wardrobe, powerful air-conditioning and free wifi.

The large bathroom is simply designed with a small freestanding power shower and separate bath, plenty of fluffy towels, over-sized bathrobes and a full set of Temple Spa bathroom products.  The restrained white colour palette is offset with a lime green tiled floor flecked with silver glitter – an eccentric touch that is sure to be a talking point (I was mesmerised by it).

That evening we dined at the hotel’s lively all-day restaurant Eaterie.  It’s clearly a destination restaurant in Ipswich with a mix of hotel guests and dressed-up locals enjoying a Saturday night out.

The exposed brick restaurant has a lofty warehouse feel and has very comfy seating and quirky trinkets dotted around such as Chinese lucky cats and golden robots.

We were brought some fresh home-made bread and olive oil to graze on before our starters arrived.  My Spring chicken breast, leg and parma ham ballotine, prune and leek was beautifully-presented and ever so tasty.  The roasted chicken was perfectly cooked with golden skin and came with two pieces of meaty, flavoursome ballotine and a rich, sticky sauce.

Steven went for the Pork cheek and terrine wrapped in parma ham, with hazelnut praline, black pudding and fennel.  The slow-cooked, flaky pork was well-complimented by the cold, herby terrine and the accompaniments made it a very sophisticated dish.

My main dish of Roast duck with Boulangere potatoes, lardons and peas was French comfort food done exceedingly well.  The medium-cooked duck was succulent and tender with a crispy skin and I loved the addition of the buttery boulangere potatoes and roasted, caramelised carrots.

Steven went for a classic Hereford Long Horn rib eye steak with hand-cut chips and slow-roasted tomatoes.  The lean, juicy steak was cooked medium on a charcoal grill and had a delicious smoky taste.  The thick-cut chips were freshly cooked and well-seasoned, however the dish would have benefited from some béarnaise or peppercorn sauce.

For dessert, the Blackberry cake with mint granita and marscapone came highly recommended by our waiter.  The moist, home-baked blackberry sponge was accompanied by a small serving of refreshing, aromatic mint granita and the creamy mascarpone sorbet added an indulgent touch.

Steven’s Sticky toffee pudding with vanilla ice cream was an enormous, decadent pudding that dwarfed my delicate little dessert.  It was as good as gets with a gooey, dense and spicy sponge doused in a generous amount of sweet, sticky toffee sauce.  This is the dessert to order if you have a seriously sweet tooth and plenty of room left.

We enjoyed our desserts with a pleasant glass of Sauternes, which was recommended on the dessert menu, and finished with a pot of fresh mint tea.  It was a fantastic meal and the staff were very friendly, although the service was at times a little wobbly and could be a bit more polished to really impress.

The hotel is well-positioned for a lovely evening walk around the marina after dinner, plus there are a number of bars if you want to make a night of it.

After a glorious night’s sleep, we headed back down to The Eaterie for a leisurely breakfast.  The menu includes tempting dishes such as Eggs Benedict, a Suffolk Grill and toasted bagel with smoked salmon and a poached egg.

We usually choose different breakfast dishes, but were both tempted by the American style buttermilk pancakes with berry compote and maple syrup.  There was a lengthy wait for the pancakes, but it was worth it as they were deliciously hot and fluffy with plenty of stewed berries and lovely maple syrup.

Salthouse Harbour Hotel is a real gem with lots of personality and a great location.  Being so close to London, it’s the perfect bolthole for a relaxing short break.

Stays at The Salthouse Harbour Hotel, Ipswich from £130 per room per night, based on two sharing on a B&B basis.  For more information and booking, visit: or call 01473 226789.

I travelled from London to Ipswich with Abellio Greater Anglia.  Advance purchase single tickets are available from £9 one way, for more information and booking, visit:  

Chérie City was a guest of Salthouse Harbour Hotel

All photos by Chérie City

Bars, Breakfast, Hotels, Hotels - Design, London, Restaurants

A Stylish Stay at The London EDITION Hotel

The London EDITION is one of the city’s hottest hotel openings last year and has received much acclaim since its arrival.

Behind the game-changing Fitzrovia design hotel is hospitality guru Ian Schrager – a pioneer of the boutique hotel experience who brought us Sanderson and St Martin’s Lane.  The inaugural EDITION Hotel opened a few years ago in Istanbul’s Levant district and a number of the brand’s hotels are set to open globally over the next few years, under the expert management of Marriott.

The London EDITION took over the tired old Berners Hotel and occupies a row of five Georgian townhouses.  It boasts a central location, just off Oxford Street, within walking distance of Soho and Covent Garden.

I visited The London EDITION for a weekend staycation and was wowed by the hotel’s cool design, social scene and attention to small detail.

The lobby is a constant hub of activity and is beautifully-designed with a restored stucco ceiling, original fireplace and futuristic stainless-steel orbs by Ingo Maurer.  It’s an inviting space with plush green velvet seating, a billiards table and complimentary work station in the lobby with Apple iMacs.

Check-in was friendly and dedicated and a member of staff accompanied us to fully introduce us to our room.  A Schrager signature is eye-catching artwork in the public areas and we couldn’t help admiring the stunning Louis XV Gobelin Tapestry behind the reception desk, contrasted by a glowing installation by Korean artist Chul Hyun Ahn at the back of the hotel.

Our Loft room was long and spacious with a gorgeous king-size bed and an open-plan seating area.  The unique style is contemporary with retro design touch and a dash of chalet-chic.  The room is designed with walnut wood panelling, pale wood flooring and a natural colour palette of caramel and cream.

The living area features a plush sofa, comfy armchair and a low coffee table with a chic orchid and design books.  I loved the addition of a cream cashmere blanket for curling up on the sofa and the pretty hydrangeas – a detail that can sometimes be overlooked by design hotels.  The view from the window was simply office buildings, so we kept the sheer curtains closed to keep the atmosphere of the room.

The hotel’s art focus extends to the rooms with a contemporary interpretation of one of Vermeer’s iconic paintings by Dutch photographer Hendrik Kerstens.  The portrait is both eerie and beautiful and the girl’s captivating gaze seemed to follow me around the room.

The king-size bed was extremely comfortable and covered in sumptuous linen, plenty of large pillows and a gorgeous faux-fur throw nonchalantly draped over one side of the bed.  In front of the bed is a 46 inch flat screen HDTV with movies on demand and a stack of premium magazines including Vogue, GQ and The Gourmand.

Other room features include a super-wide desk and retro chair, iPod docking station and an extra-large built-in wardrobe filled with a handy umbrella, clothes brush and ironing board.  Not only is there a minibar filled with premium drinks and gourmet snacks, but there’s a marble bar counter with a selection of spirits, a mini cocktail shaker and fancy glassware.

To top it all off, we were welcomed with a retro sweet shop bag filled with large strawberry marshmallows – the Chef’s sweet of the day.  At evening turndown, complimentary mineral water was placed beside the bed.

The sleek, minimal bathroom was covered in tiny white mosaics, with a powerful walk-in rainforest shower, wooden towel rail and wide Corian Grohe white sink – the cool kind that you might find in a nightclub.

It had clever storage with a pull-out drawer below the sink featuring a proper hairdryer, face tissues, vanity essentials and the all-important bathroom products.  We also had the luxury of plush embroidered bathrobes and slippers for lounging in.

I’m never usually excited by hotel own-brand toiletries, but The London EDITION’s range is very special and almost reason enough to stay overnight.

The products have been created exclusively for the hotel by cult perfumer Le Labo and have a luxurious, intoxicating black tea fragrance.  They smell amazing on both men and women and perfectly capture the stylish, sexy ambiance of the hotel.

That evening, we decided to eat healthy and went for some vegan food at Planet Organic, however if you’re after something a bit more sparkly for a Saturday night, try and score a table at the hotel’s renowned Berners Tavern by Executive Chef Jason Atherton or Roka and Dabbous just a short walk away.

Of course, we couldn’t resist checking out the hotel’s lively atmosphere with a round of cocktails in the buzzing Lobby Bar.  The bar attracts a well-heeled crowd elegantly lounging at the bar and low tables with glam waitresses serving cocktails in designer LBDs.

Davide Segat’s cocktail menu is innovative and well-edited, with a focus on aromatic drinks using house-made bitters and potent spirits.  I tried a refreshing Summer Cup and Steven went for a Golden Age, made with Johnnie Walker Black Label, aged cherry brand, yellow Chartreuse and Fernet Branca.

Another drinking destination in the hotel is the reservations only Punch Room. Nestled at the back of the hotel is an oak-panelled den that feels like a cross between a private members club and the library of a country manor house.

It serves Punch Bowls for 2-8 people and has a cosy feel with low-key vintage soul, jazz and blues playing.  It’s ideal for a quiet, intimate drink but we preferred the atmosphere and open-plan design of the lively lobby bar.

At night, the charming door security multiply and manage the queue behind the velvet rope for the members-only BASEMENT nightclub inside the hotel (Ian Schrager was behind Studio 54, after all).  The vibe seems distinctly non-glitzy with a cool ‘street style’ crowd and YOYO’s Seb Chew at the helm (ie. properly good music).

In the morning, breakfast is served in the gorgeous surroundings of the acclaimed Berners Tavern.  The breakfast menu is full of tempting dishes, from healthy chilled citrus salad and cold-pressed kale juice to indulgent Hazelnut waffles with berries and cream and the ultimate Full English.

My Eggs Benedict were sustantial and delicious, with perfectly-poached eggs, thick griddled ham and creamy Hollandaise atop a fluffy English muffin.

However, Steven’s enormous Buttermilk pancakes with summer berries, maple syrup and vanilla cream was the winning breakfast dish.  No less than five freshly-flipped pancakes were doused in high quality maple syrup and topped with fresh whole berries, with the most indulgent vanilla cream served on the side.

Our Earl Grey tea was presented nicely in a silver pot with fine china tea cups – clearly everything is done with flair at Berners Tavern.

The London EDITION is the hotel to stay at if you appreciate cutting-edge design and a lobby that’s constantly bringing its A game.  While the hotel has plenty of dining and bar amenities, I was a little surprised that a property of its size didn’t have a spa for some pampering and relaxation.

With Ian Schrager’s vision and Marriott’s signature warm hospitality, The London EDITION is without a doubt one of the city’s finest design hotels.

Room rates at The London EDITION Hotel start from £285 per room per night.  For more information and booking, visit:

Chérie City was a guest of The London EDITION Hotel

Photos by Chérie City (Berners Tavern by The London EDITION Hotel)