The large facade of Mandarin Oriental Hyde Park, London, may seem daunting at first. But the richness and Victorian influences soon make you feel like one of the royal families who have so often graced this hotel
By: LuxuryFacts Team
Posted on: October 10, 2010
Lavish, princely and absolutely stately – that’s the first words that come to your mind when you see the Mandarin Oriental in London. Situated between the beautiful royal park, Hyde Park and exclusive Knightsbridge, this luxurious hotel is one of the finest addresses in the city.
The hotel was built in 1889, but then it was only a Gentleman’s Club. The building became a hotel in 1902 and rapidly established itself as one of London’s grandest properties. The list of its famous guests includes the royal family of London. Queen Mary was a regular visitor here. The Prince of Wales - later Edward VII - came for society balls and most of his semi-official engagements. Princess Alexandra used to attend elegant dances here. Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II and the late Princess Margaret first learned to dance here. Prince Philip held his polo and cocktail parties within the hotel as well as often bringing Princess Anne and Prince Charles to tea when they were children. And more recently, in October 2005, Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Phillip were guests at Baroness Margaret Thatcher’s 80th birthday party held in the hotel’s grand ballroom. Truly a long association with the royalty!
The hotel has 198 luxuriously adorned guest rooms and suites, many of which overlook royal parkland. Each room is so ornate and rich that it looks straight out of the Buckingham Palace. The rooms provide both comfort and elegance with the latest in technology.
The hotel has recently undergone renovation with the Royal Suite recently reopening. The expanded 242 sq mt suite includes a master bedroom and bathroom, separate living room, dining room and kitchen and two adjoining additional bedrooms all of which evoke a feeling of staying in a chic city apartment. Raised ceilings and streamlined furnishings encourage a light and spacious atmosphere. The sweeping 70 sq mts balcony runs the length of the magnificent suite and can entertain up to 40 guests in summer months.
The renovation also resulted in the opening of Bar Boulud. This widely French inspired, bistro and wine bar seats 169 in two large connecting rooms, the first with an impressive zinc topped bar and the second with a sleek open kitchen. Classic materials such as wood, leather and cork add a contemporary touch. The menu is based on seasonal, rustic French cooking and includes signatures dishes such as Truffled White Sausage, Grilled Atlantic Sea Bass, Braised Rabbit Ragout and Coq au Vin as well as a selection of terrines and pâtés. With a focus on Burgundy and the Rhône Valley, an impressive selection of wines, by the glass and by the bottle, and occasionally from Magnums, Jeroboams and Rehoboams, is available here. A selection of beers is also available from small, artisanal producers and continental microbreweries.
Mandarin Oriental London is also going to offer Dinner by Heston Blumenthal, Chef Heston Blumenthal’s first London restaurant, from December 2010. Blumenthal has won international acclaim for his unique and multi-sensory approach to cooking. This restaurant will feature the chef’s inimitable style of culinary alchemy with a menu heavily influenced by his ongoing research and discovery of historic British gastronomy. The menu will feature simple contemporary dishes with recipes dating as far back as the 16th century, such as Scallops with Cucumber Ketchup and Peas, Bergamot cured Mackerel Salad and Slow Cooked Short Rib of Beef.
Now that the food and stay is taken care of, Mandarin Oriental London also strives to provide the ultimate in urban escapism. The Spa at Mandarin Oriental is a relaxing haven where the boundaries of East and West blend in harmony. Drawing on exotic therapies, philosophies and cultures from around the world, a series of specially designed treatments are offered to rejuvenate the body and spirit. Spa guests can spend optimum time in the Amethyst Crystal Steam Room, Sanarium, Vitality Pool and Zen Colour Therapy Relaxation area to ensure optimal relaxation.