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The Connaught, London

$400 or more
Editor's Pick
London, England, Europe: The Connaught hotel's Coburg Bar, designed by Parisian India Mahdavi.
Carlos Place
England W1K 2AL
Tel: 44 20 7499 7070's insider take:

You have to do something pretty special to stand out beside Claridge's and The Berkeley—the sister properties in the Maybourne Hotel Group's triumvirate of super-luxury London hotels—yet the Connaught managed it in summer 2008, causing quite a stir when it reopened after a $105 million face-lift. Its new bar, the Coburg, designed by Parisian India Mahdavi, instantly became the place to go for cocktails. The black and taupe surroundings are furnished with antique chairs reupholstered in burgundy, mink, and purple fabrics, and four black-and-white cameos by Julian Opie. Acclaimed French chef Hélène Darroze has replaced Gordon Ramsay, taking charge of the hotel's cuisine. The renovation project continues until December 2009, with the unveiling of a new gym and spa. Designer Guy Oliver has retained the Edwardian grandeur in the 117 rooms, with a traditional palette of light greens, silvers, and ebony, but he's also added some quirky pieces here and there, such as a funky red-and-gold lacquered cabinet. For those who enjoy being pampered, the staff-to-guest ratio of 3:1 ensures service with all the trimmings.

From the readers of Condé Nast Traveler:
Overall Score: 89.9
  • Design: 92.1
  • Food: 87.8
  • Location: 92.1
  • Rooms: 81.3
  • Service: 96.1
One could "get lost in the wood-paneled halls adorned with art" at this Edwardian brick hotel. Rich rooms have chinoiserie cabinets and cozy window seats. A new wing holds 30 more-modern guest rooms and an Aman Spa. Tuck into southwestern French specialties at Hélène Darroze; Espelette is more casual, in a glass conservatory revealing Mount Street views. "You'll understand why the chief concierge has a fine reputation."

(123 rooms)
—2011 Gold List

Amenities: Pool, Spa

Information may have changed since the date of publication. Please confirm details with individual establishments before planning your trip.