A clubby, art-filled sibling to one of London’s grandest hotels
For a contemporary hotel with a smart Park Lane address right on the edge of Mayfair – and serious, noteworthy art.
What is it?
The Dorchester’s sassier, sexier little sibling (the mothership is just across the street), 45 Park Lane feels a bit like a private members’ club. The vibe is very masculine, with Art Deco styled, contemporary art-filled rooms, and the location is hard to beat: right opposite Hyde Park, with a five-minute stroll to the shops of upmarket Mayfair.
Behind the scenes
The original grey concrete structure was designed by Bauhaus architect Walter Gropius in the 1960s; the luscious feminine curves on the outside used to be echoed by luscious feminine curves on the inside too, back when the building was home to the London Playboy Club and casino, hopping with Bunny Girls. Interiors have been whizzed bang up to date by New York-based French architect and designer Thierry Despont (whose impressive client list includes Bill Gates and Ralph Lauren); expect plenty of black lacquer, leather, chrome and dark glazed-wood walls.
The handsome rooms and suites all overlook Hyde Park (the London Balcony Suite has, as the name suggests, a balcony with 180-degree views of London’s skyline). We love the sleek techy touches, such as remote-controlled blinds and heated marble floors in the bathrooms, and you’ll find a yoga mat and skipping rope in the wardrobe. Splash out on The Penthouse Suite for your own entire floor, a private lift, a 24-hour host and access to the spa at The Dorchester.
Celebrity chef Wolfgang Puck (who has spent the past 25 years designing menus for the Oscars) is the man behind superior steakhouse Cut at 45 Park Lane. A cool twist on the modern American steak restaurant, it’s said to have the widest selection of beef in London (pan-roasted Scottish lobster is the top fishy alternative). The glamorous Bar 45 is perfect for pre- or post-dinner cocktails or a glass of wine; the bar stocks Wolfgang Puck’s own Wolfgang Puck-Schrader Beckstoffer Georges III Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon from the Napa Valley, of which only 80 cases were made.
Who stays here?
Businessmen, art buffs, those with cash to splash.
The art – which is taken seriously. The display on the walls changes regularly – one month there might be music-inspired pop vinyl; the next, emerging artists working in collage, sculpture and photography.
Out and about
Borrow one of the bespoke purple Brompton bicycles for a meander through Hyde Park, or to explore the hidden backstreets of Mayfair. Soho is only a 20-minute amble further east. The hotel’s seasonal guides to London ensure you’re equipped with everything there is to know, whether it’s the theatre season at Shakespeare’s Globe or the latest art exhibition at the V&A.