Best hotels: London

Match your hotel to your needs in Britain’s diverse and dizzying capital

Best for... Shopaholics

The Arch
With Oxford Street and Selfridges just around the corner, this stylish hotel (pictured) is an ideal base for a spree in the capital. Seven townhouses were combined and renovated just three years ago to form a contemporary hotel with generously sized rooms, diverse modern furniture and a flatscreen TV in every bathtub – perfect for catching up on the news and weather during your morning rituals. There’s a stylish reading room and restaurant plus a gym in the basement and – psst! – Madonna’s house is across the road at number 53. 50 Great Cumberland Pl, London. +44 20 7724 4700. Tube: Marble Arch.

Best for... Theatre fans

One Leicester Street
Perched in the heart of Theatreland, this hip Soho mini-hotel is an ideal base for bingeing on London’s latest plays and musicals (controversial crowd-pleaser The Book of Mormon is playing at the Prince of Wales just across the road). Many rooms daringly combine bedroom and bathroom with a minimalist Scandinavian aesthetic that’s delightfully compact. Don’t miss the ground floor restaurant’s excellent value pre-theatre menu with three tasty courses for £19, and get them to make you a Corpse Grinder #2 while you’re at it. Fabulous. 1 Leicester St, London. +44 20 3301 8020. Tube: Piccadilly.

Best for... Royal watchers

Flemings Mayfair
This boutique hotel boasts some pretty classy neighbours. Flemings is just a five-minute walk across picturesque Green Park from Buckingham Palace in all its pomp and ceremony, and it's an easy stroll to Big Ben and Westminster Abbey. Established in 1851, the hotel’s latest design incarnation features a ‘books’ theme and photos of London in the swinging 60s. Recapture that scene in the colourful, intimate Bar & Tea Rooms, which does cocktail classics for around £12 a pop. Half Moon St, London. +44 20 7499 0000. Tube: Green Park.

Best for... Hipsters

Ace Hotel London Shoreditch
America’s cult hotel brand Ace has opened its first international outpost in the heart of London's edgy Shoreditch and its debut had been smack bang on the money. The 258 designer rooms have flea-market luxe furniture, vintage radios, and turntables with a selection of vinyl. Some even come with an acoustic Martin guitar. Don't skip the digs without an espresso from Square Mile Coffee Roasters. 100 Shoreditch High St, London. +44 20 7613 9800. Tube: Shoreditch High St.

Best for... Design junkies

Dorset Square Hotel
A short cab ride from Paddington Station and close to Notting Hill, this 38-room property recently underwent a major refurbishment that's seen it emerge as one of the best boutique hotels in the capital, courtesy of one-off furniture pieces and unique artworks hand-picked by designer and owner Kit Kemp. Rooms overlook the site of Thomas Lord's first cricket ground, while top nosh and wine is to be had at the Potting Shed downstairs. 39-40 Dorset Sq, London. +44 20 7723 7874. Tube: Marylebone.

First published on 10 Nov 2013. Updated on 26 Mar 2014.

By Nick Dent & James Wilkinson   |  

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