Located in the perfect spot for sight-seeing, The Stafford epitomises traditional British luxury. Discover Britain pays a visit…
It seems a contradiction in terms to describe somewhere right in the middle of central London – a stone’s throw from Mayfair, Piccadilly and Buckingham Palace – as secluded. But seclusion is the feeling one gets at The Stafford, a quintessentially British hotel that combines friendly and old-school service with contemporary luxury. It has rightly won countless awards over the years, but entirely lacks the stuffiness and pomposity of some of its better-known neighbours.
We were upgraded to a junior suite in a modern annexe of the hotel, where there was no stinting on comfort or luxurious amenities; the bed was enormous and enveloped us totally, the décor speaks of nothing so much as sumptuousness and the bath begs to be enjoyed at leisure – preferably by candlelight. The overall impression is of exquisite luxury.
Food and drink
Cocktails at the American Bar are a must; not only does this clubby little place have the feeling of an authentically smart New York speakeasy, but the drinks – especially the Stafford’s Garden, a mixture of apple juice, Hendrick’s gin and apple sour – are divine. The Lyttleton restaurant, meanwhile, justifiably holds two AA rosettes for its British cooking, which features everything from scallop ceviche to Josper grill-cooked steak, and it’s all done exquisitely well. Wines are overseen by knowledgeable head sommelier Gino, and if the prices are anything but cheap, the quality more than matches them – as does the impeccable and always friendly service.
Green Park is just a few paces behind the hotel; Buckingham Palace a five-minute stroll through it. Within a few yards are the Royal Academy, Fortnum and Mason’s , Piccadilly Circus and the exclusive old-world shops of St James’s and Jermyn Street. It’s hard to think of a better-located spot to stay in central London. A special mention, too, for the beautiful old courtyard outside, which is a special place to enjoy an al fresco drink on a hot summer’s day.
In a nutshell
A genuinely five-star experience on every level. The hotel has been going since 1912, and with over a century of delivering on its exemplary reputation, it looks as if little is likely to change over the next 100 years.