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Brown's Hotel is an institution in London, and when guests describe their stay as 'a dream' and the staff as 'supermen', you know that reputation is deserved. With a slew of Conde Nast and National Geographic awards to their name, it's unsurprising that Brown's has been host to some of Britain's best and brightest. Previous guests. These include Rudyard Kipling, who wrote The Jungle Book whilst in residence, and Prime Minister Winston Churchill who visited often and enjoyed the kippers at breakfast.
Whether you are staying in a Classic, Executive, Deluxe or Suite room, you can enjoy a very comfortable sleep in luxurious surroundings. Rooms retain an air of traditional British charm, but reflect the cosmopolitan nature of the area, with muted colours, ambient lighting and Carrara marble bathrooms (the same used for the Marble Arch monument just down the road). An extensive range of amenities include LCD TVs with interactive video on demand, dual line phones with voice messaging, bathrobes, Brown's toiletries and broadband internet connection, so you will be fully connected to the modern world, whilst you relax away from it. Little details show the thought that has gone into room design, with a range of books and small floral arrangements in each room. As if the rooms weren't relaxing enough, there is also a spa in the hotel, where you can pamper yourself; or you can have a high-powered workout in the state of the art gym.
Brown's has a long-standing reputation for good service; staff are attentive and friendly and will go that extra mile to make your stay special. Whether the service is leaving toys for your children in the room, providing a complementary bottle of champagne if you are celebrating or serving gluten-free scones and cakes so those with an allergy can indulge, they have been highly praised across the board by previous guests and more than justify the hefty room rates.
HIX at The Albemarle offers cutting edge cuisine in elegant surroundings, livened by contemporary touches such as Tracy Emin and Bridget Riley paintings. The prices are geared towards the area's affluent residents, but a reasonable set menu is offered if you fancy a late lunch or early dinner. You can also enjoy award-winning afternoon tea (The Tea Guild’s ‘Top London Afternoon Tea 2009’), accompanied by piano music in The English Tearoom. Cocktail's in the hotel's Donovan Bar are equally award winning (The Space Race and Box Brownie come highly recommended). Try to grab a banquette in the 'naughty corner' (where the bar have displayed photographer Terence Donovan's, for whom the bar is named, more risqué work). There is a fantastic selection of restaurants to suit any budget near the hotel as well, Dom Vito offers unassumingly good Italian food just a few minutes walk away, Chop'd offers a range of artisan sandwiches and chain cafes such as Starbucks, Caffe Nero and Prêt A Manger all offer free wireless, so you don't have to pay hotel rates. There is also a supermarket, Rai’s; just a few minutes walk away.
Brown's Hotel is very well situated for sight seeing and shopping. Fashionistas will be awestruck by the vast array of designer and high street shops in Oxford Circus, Regent Street and Bond Street. If you're on a limited budget and can't quite afford the Manolos, there will be a cheaper alternative somewhere nearby. If you want to see some of London's best emerging and established artists, galleries such as Alan Cristea, Timothy Taylor and larger institutions such as The Serpentine and The Royal Academy of Arts have a wide programme of exhibitions, Private Views and artist talks. You are also well placed to visit theatres such as The Palladium, The Criterion and Prince of Wales, or for something a little less highbrow you can visit Ripley's Believe it or Not Museum in Piccadilly. The hotel is also just a leisurely stroll from Buckingham Palace and Hyde Park for a regal indoor activity and a relaxing range of outdoor activities. It is unlikely you will run out of things to do, but if you find the selection overwhelming the hotel concierge can advise which sights shouldn’t be missed.
The hotel is very well located for transport, just 10 minutes walk from Green Park tube station, which services the Jubilee, Victoria and Piccadilly lines. From here you have direct links to Victoria Station (where the Gatwick Express Train terminates); King's Cross St Pancras Station (where the Eurostar terminates); and Heathrow Airport, which can be reached via the Piccadilly line. If you are driving to the hotel, it is situated just off the main A4 road, which can be accessed via the M4 and M25; however, guests should note that the hotel is in the congestion charge zone. Parking is available at the NCP car park in Old Park Lane, which is juts a 10 minute walk away and may be cheaper than at the hotel.
Staying at Browns is a definite treat and their reputation is a guarantee of a good stay. Rooms are very expensive, but unlike some hotels in the area, this is reflected in the fittings, service and location. To ensure the best experience make sure you request a room facing the serene hotel courtyard.