The bar has been set very high with lots of new 5-star openings and refurbishments over the last few years and the competition is fierce. What is it that sets The Berkeley apart for a London staycation? Let me tell you…

Little London Whispers at The Berkeley Hotel

The Berkeley | Location is everything

The London location in fashionable Knightsbridge is difficult to beat. It is a straight run in from Heathrow, easy to get to from the main train stations and 2 minutes walk from the Piccadilly Line Underground station.

For the shoppers you are within a 5-minute walk of Harvey Nichols, Harrods and the boutiques of Sloane Street. It is also only a stone’s throw away from Hyde Park. Whether you are out for a run or a stroll, Hyde Park, which was originally established by Henry VIII as his hunting ground, provides the perfect escape from the city. You may even catch a guard or two.

Theatre land is a short taxi ride away or 3 stops on the tube, and you are equidistant from some of the finest museums and galleries in Europe. Location is everything.

Checking in… Staying in

Our Grand Terrace Suite (room 109) was honestly one of the most relaxing rooms I have ever stayed in. The moment you enter you feel an aura of peace and tranquillity. Walk through the sitting area, through the dressing area and into the sleeping area, and you are greeted with a wonderful outlook over a charming terrace onto the church across the road. It really is something special.

The lowly built bed and bath allows you views even from your bath tub, without being overlooked at all. The warmth of the wooden floors and cupboards does give you a sense incredible calm and aesthetic beauty.

Design details

The whole suite has been beautifully designed by John Heah (same architect at Amanera) with extraordinary attention to detail. There is a freshness about it that makes you feel very relaxed and at home. Mr B loved picking up the coffee table books, and getting lost in thought.. or he was out by the terrace reading his newspaper.

It is all very zen, despite being in the middle of a major city. In terms of comfort the bed for a good nights sleep, we slept like babies.

Rooftop swim at The Berkeley

One of the unique features of The Berkeley is its roof top pool. A major perk with incredible views out over Hyde Park and across London, and only accessible if you are staying at the hotel.

We went for an early evening dip as the sun set and it was glorious. Admittedly it was cold outside, but the water temperature was perfect with steam coming off it.

If I was visiting London, and looked across the board at where I wanted to stay – having an outside pool for moments like these would be the game changer. There is nothing like it.

This isn’t a club vibe, you can go to Soho House for that. This is quiet luxury and to have access to a rooftop pool in central London is a huge draw. An outdoor swim isn’t just for summer it’s an all year round wellness bonus.

There wasn’t time to enjoy the Bamford Wellness Spa on this trip.. I’ll save that for next time. The offering of facials and massages with the organic brand was not lost on my antannai.

In the mood for room service…

We had missed out on lunch, so an early dinner in the room was on order. Within 20 minutes of placing our order, a trolley was wheeled into our room.

The waiter then lifted wings, set up the cutlery and produced the hot food from inside a warming oven under the trolley. Everything we needed was there.

Pizza and a veal schnitzel that were as good as it would have been in a top restaurant. We eat out in plenty of restaurants and otherwise cook for ourselves.

There is something very decadent about having food wheeled into your room and having your own private dining experience. You are sitting at a proper table with white linen, wine and your own choice of music playing. If staycations are about decadence, this was it.

Testing out the bars at The Berkeley

Feeling well-fed we descended down for a nightcap to the Berkeley Bar & Terrace. If you can reserve ‘The Snug’, I can only say it is as special as it looks. Designed by Bryan O’Sullivan, the whole space is elegant and calm with that whirling mural of female faces. It is hard to take your eyes off them.

Elegant tones of pink, coral and curved seating are all incredibly inviting. It certainly warrants the title of prettiest bar in London. You can also bluetooth your own music.. so your mood, your music. Perfect for a small group of friends. Looking for a quiet Sunday drink, a morning coffee or a midweek chic margarita, it has all the feels.

If you want more of a dark sexy vibe, then it is the David Collins’s Blue Bar for you. It has a DJ set every Thursday – Saturday, cool music and chips at 11pm… That wouldn’t stop me being there midweek though. More often than not, its busy busy busy.

Before we leave…

Pack it all in before that midday check out. Like larks we were back up on the roof to wake ourselves up with an uplifting morning swim. The advantage of staying in January is that sunrise is at the civilised hour of 7.40am. It kills any morning blues you may have.

Eating at The Berkeley

Down to the contemporary Collins Room for breakfast. This room is probably best known for their award winning ‘Prêt-à-Portea’. An afternoon tea eating your way through an international catwalk, there is a reason it always features in my top 7 Afternoon Tea’s in London. It ticks numerous boxes for theme, quality and that fashionista fun factor.

For breakfast my favourite table in The Collin’s room is one of the corner tables by the window. My instant pick me up is a bespoke coffee and a very small acai bowl.. although the pastry basket was too good to resist. Mr B may have just had not one, but two pistachio pastries and a croissant!

Cédric Grolet opened his only pâtisserie outside Paris here at The Berkeley. Exquisite cakes and pastries, it is a ‘Goutea’. It is impossibly hard to resist the work of art he creates as a cake. His pain swisse is also something to be savoured and remembered.

The Berkeley | A summary

The atmosphere is one of tranquil modern luxury. It is perhaps too big to be called boutique but that’s the vibe you get. There is an air of understated elegance, low-key, not big and brash. The Berkeley hotel scores on every level. The management do an amazing job in ensuring the staff whatever their position are professional and friendly.

The Berkeley Hotel, Wilton Place, SW1

Little London Whispers was a guest of The Berkeley Hotel