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Brown’s Hotel, a quintessentially British pied-à-terre in Mayfair
25 Oct. 2023
25 Oct. 2023
In the heart of London, just a short walk from Regent Street, Leicester Square, St James’s Park and Buckingham Palace, Brown’s Hotel is one of London’s most iconic addresses to check into. US President Theodore Roosevelt and English writer Agatha Christie often stayed, and history has it, author Rudyard Kipling penned part of The Jungle Book here, in a suite now named after him.
The hotel also has a unique charm, unmistakably British, and with idiosyncrasies you wouldn’t find in newer, more contemporary hotels. Walk through the doors of Brown’s and you will discover British refinement and elegance.
London is not short of luxury hotels in incredible locations but Brown’s Hotel is something special. It sits in the heart of Mayfair, with The Mall and Buckingham Palace just a short walk away, and the shopping of Oxford Street, Regent Street, Covent Garden and Piccadilly around the area. The hotel itself sits across the street from the Royal Arcade, which is the oldest shopping arcade in London and whose high-end boutiques and jewelers are among the poshest in the city.
For culture enthusiasts, there are also the many art galleries on Cork Street and theatres on Shaftesbury Avenue, alongside some of London’s finest restaurants and bars. If you would like to visit London, our Guest Experience Managers will be delighted to recommend and book the best addresses in the capital to suit your aspirations, as they know the city inside out.
Brown’s may be one of London’s oldest and most traditional hotels, but it is no museum thanks to the imaginative interiors by co-founder – and Director of Design at Rocco Forte Hotels – Olga Polizzi.
She has this incredible talent for striking the perfect balance between comfort, character and creativity, keeping her finger on the pulse of design trends but never quite forgetting the history and culture of a hotel’s location.
For Brown’s Hotel, the sense of history is palpable in the rich wood paneling, the stained-glass windows and the antique artworks of the decor, but here is a fresh modernity to it too, with wallpapers emblazoned with blossoms and birds, vast chandeliers and floors imagined with a hypnotic pattern of tiny mosaic tiles.
In particular, the hotel’s 82 rooms and 33 luxury suites feel bright following their refresh in 2019: Whimsical wallpapers, stylish sitting areas and color palettes in soothing shades of taupe and moss green. Brown’s Hotel is also a place where we firmly recommend the upgrade to a suite where things get brighter, patterns start to clash and stories are told in every detail.
In the Classic Suite, for example, artworks from local artisans and quintessentially English books accentuate the space. In the stately Dover Suite, floor-to-ceiling windows overlooking the namesake Dover Street. In the Kipling Suite, you will find a handwritten letter from author Rudyard Kipling himself, alongside period furnishings, a walk-in wardrobe with hand-painted wallpaper and an Italian Arabescato marble bathroom with a freestanding bath.
Olga Polizzi has collaborated with the famous British fashion designer Paul Smith to create a space that honors his style, with his favorite colors and patterns, but also his sense of humor. For years, Paul Smith’s Mayfair store at No. 9 Albemarle Street has been sitting mere metres away from the hotel, and Olga Polizzi would often drop by to have a look at the latest vintage furniture or art finds on display.
For the suite, Olga and Paul worked closely to include as many of his design hallmarks as possible. Right from the door, the designer’s signature is a giveaway, along with the unpolished brass banana for a handle, which is typical of the humor Paul Smith is known for. The banana is a nod to the Christmas bauble the designer created in 2019 to honor the 125th anniversary of Rudyard Kipling’s Jungle Book.
Inside, Sir Paul’s signature stripe motif is present throughout, along with a floor-to-ceiling feature wall with a hand-picked collection of the designer’s framed pictures and treasured objects.
“It was very important to incorporate items that are personal to me,” Paul explains, and so the suite is home to some of his favorite art and design books, an impressively large print of the library at Chatsworth House that also hangs in his office and a Mario Bellini leather desk chair relocated from Paul Smith’s Covent Garden HQ.
Brown’s is home to just one restaurant but with Michelin-starred chef Adam Byatt at the helm, you will not feel the need for more. Charlie’s is a warm, elegant space, with mirror-decorated woodwork topped by a bucolic frieze, and basket-style banquettes combining blue velvet and floral fabric. On the menu, expect traditional British dishes that change with the seasons: Dorset crab appetizers, za’atar spiced monkfish, grilled or pan fried dover sole and roast mallard with fondant potato.
Elsewhere, you will also find The Drawing Room where a ceremonious afternoon tea is served every day. It’s believed that the afternoon tea was one of Queen Victoria’s favorites in London, and the hotel keeps it just as elegant to this day. Surrounded by original wood paneling, striking artworks and a genteel ambience, enjoy a quintessentially English tradition in a quintessentially English hotel.
Then, of course, the hotel has a bar, intimate, sophisticated and with an impeccable menu by the legendary maestro of cocktails, Salvatore Calabrese. His latest project is Evoke, a new concept at the bar with cocktails inspired by emotions. Every creation explores what it means to be alive, so order the Red and experience the breadth of emotions associated with the provocative color – excitement, arousal, love, fury… There is also Adrenaline, Wonder, (In)Decision, Wanderlust, Deep Blue and so much more.
The spa at Brown’s is a small subterranean sanctuary but it punches above its weight with 3 treatment rooms and proprietary Irene Forte products that use botanicals from Rocco Forte’s expansive beach resort in Sicily.
On the sun-kissed Mediterranean coast, Verdura Resort enjoys a setting amid 70,000 native Sicilian plants and shrub species, and these are formulated into products and toiletries used across the many Rocco Forte Hotels.
Brown’s Hotel sits at 33 Albemarle St, in London.
Alongside the new Sir Paul Smith Suite, the Kipling Suite is the hotel’s most beautiful!
A stay at Brown’s comes with the perk of using the house Bentley for trips within a two-mile radius!
Brown’s is proud to be a pet-friendly hotel and guests are welcome to bring their small pets and enjoy a stay together.
Brown’s Hotel is a 30-minute drive from London City Airport, a 45-minute drive from London Heathrow Airport and a 70-minute drive from London Gatwick Airport. The hotel is a 15-minute drive from St Pancras International and King’s Cross Station.
At Lartisien, we tailor your trip to your aspirations and select each hotel in our collection for its excellence, guaranteeing an exceptional trip. Whether you’d like to book a stay at The Brown’s Hotel, or have us design a London itinerary to suit your interests, please do not hesitate to contact us for more information.