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Haymarket Hotel, London 

See the London Guide ›
1 Suffolk Place
England SW1Y 4BP
Tel: 44 20 7470 4000
view web site ›'s insider take:

If style is high on your list of priorities, then look no further than the Haymarket. This 50-room hotel in a landmark building by John Nash, the architect behind most of Regency London, oozes panache with a dash of quirkiness. But that's only to be expected from dynamic husband-and-wife team Tim and Kit Kemp, whose Firmdale Hotels group includes the Soho Hotel, the Covent Garden, and Number Sixteen. From the lobby—where visitors are greeted by a towering stainless-steel sculpture by Tony Cragg and London landscapes by John Virtue—to the bold lighting and gilded columns around the 55-foot swimming pool, every room packs a punch. The bar and restaurant faces London's buzzy Haymarket neighborhood with its theaters and clubs and is a good spot for people-watching. The rooms and suites have painted antique furniture, French windows reminiscent of a Parisian apartment, and understated vases of country flowers. Muted shades serve as a background to a bold stripe or floral pattern in pink, turquoise, or yellow. The luxurious bathrooms are designed in granite, oak, and glass and have flat-screen TVs for tub viewing. Bag a room on the first floor, where there's a wooden-decked terrace overlooking an enormous skylight into a beautiful conservatory, with a large painting of a forest by Paul Winstanley.

From the editors of Condé Nast Traveler:

Firmdale's latest London hotel is a design standout. The graceful building by John Nash—architect of the Theatre Royal Haymarket, next door—has its entrance on quiet Suffolk Place. Modern British art juxtaposed with a palette of cheerful hues creates the spectacular public spaces: There's a sumptuous library with an honor bar, where you can play chess in front of the fire. In the adjoining "shooting gallery," lights hanging from swags of bunched silk glow against gray-green Zuber wallpaper. A 60-foot-long pool gleams below twinkling ceiling lights and a wall-mounted installation. Most of the bathrooms in the 51 well-appointed rooms have both a large shower and a cast-iron tub. The brasserie-style Brumus draws a pre-theater crowd.

—2008 Hot List

When to go: London is a year-round destination.

Which room to book: A double room in the corner (Nos. 111, 211, and 311), for its light and views.

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