From a famous historical haven to a modern budget-friendly bolthole, here are some of the best places to stay in the capital for all of your pre and post-wedding needs!
Whether you’re heading to the big smoke to find your dress in one of the fabulous bridal boutiques, hitting the club- and unique-experience- lined streets with your hens,
or splashing out at the many Michelin-starred restaurants and world-famous West End theatres on a luxurious, urban mini-moon, it’s a city that really puts on a good show when it comes to weddings.
When it comes to planning a hen party, the big smoke has some of the hottest bars, clubs and restaurants going and there are bags of unique and unusual hen do activities to choose from. Whether it’s a luxe spa day you’re after or dancing until dawn, London is sure to deliver your perfect send-off into married life.
When it comes to shopping, the city has it all and is the ideal spot to shop for that all-important dress or suit. Filled with big names as well as small boutiques, you’ll find fashion and decorative accessories aplenty here.
For those looking to soak up some culture or maybe just a bubble bath on a romantic mini-moon in the capital, our top hotel picks certainly won’t disappoint. You’ll feel a million miles away from home as you gaze across the stunning city landscape or tuck into some of Europe’s most delicious dishes.
Read on to discover our ultimate list of places to stay in the big city, whether you’re in the first stages of wedding dress shopping, partying or chilling we guarantee to tempt you with these top hotels. Get packing, you won’t want to wait!
Sofitel London St James
Best for: Dress and suit shopping
Set among the gorgeous historic buildings of Waterloo Place, Sofitel London St James is in a fabulous location. Perfect for seeing the sights (Buckingham Palace and Big Ben are close by) and shopping (the delights of Piccadilly with Jermyn Street’s suits and Mayfair’s bridal boutiques are just minutes away), there’s also a great choice of cafés and restaurants on your doorstep.
To say we loved the Sofitel London St James is somewhat of an understatement. It would be perfect for that special dress shopping trip, an opulent first night or luxurious mini-moon. Our incredible Lord Laurence Olivier Suite was vast, and with the most enchanting view of Pall Mall. The lounge area (with fresh flowers, huge sofas, TV and writing desk) led into our own private kitchen. The marbled bathroom was huge and heavenly (with Hermès products) and led to our sumptuous bedroom… with the biggest bed.
The Balcon restaurant feels special. Sitting in a private booth sipping gorgeous wines, we dined on mussels with garlic butter and leeks, and smoked salmon with crab and avocado, followed by smoked duck breast with cherry jus and sea bream fillet. Desserts were fabulous, too – honey ice cream macarons were to die for, and the dark chocolate mousse was heavenly.
Rooms from £260.
The Bvlgari Hotel London
Best for: A luxurious first night
Set in gorgeous Knightsbridge, the Bvlgari is special. Only a short walk away you have some of the most fabulous shops and sights in the capital: Harrods, Harvey Nichols, the V&A, and sprawling Hyde Park. The sleek, modern entrance oozes luxury and immediately creates a glamorous first impression as you step into the dark, moody lobby.
Elegant, contemporary and calm, the Bvlgari feels like a secret right in the heart of the city. Our Deluxe Suite was breathtaking, and huge. A large open-plan lounge was divided by a modern re, leading to our dining area and private kitchen. The stylish bedroom was impeccable with a large, comfy bed and luxurious textiles, and the bathroom (with the deepest bath), plus walk-in shower room, was simply stunning.
We opted for
room service on the
night we stayed – and
this was no ordinary room service! Our butler arrived through a secret door to our kitchen, laid our table and then served our food. We dined on incredible dim sum, and the best cheeseburger beef sliders ever, served with crisp pinot grigio. Sumptuous raspberry cheesecake finished off the gorgeous meal perfectly. In the morning, breakfast in the beautiful restaurant consisted of French toast with maple syrup and eggs royale.
Rooms from £550 per night, and Suites from £6,300 (room only).
Z Hotel Covent Garden
Best for: A hen weekend
The Z Hotel chain is all about convenience combined with savvy prices, making its Covent Garden outpost perfect for a hen weekend, where you’ll spend more time out and about than chilling in your room.
Z Hotels are compact with cleverly designed, minimal rooms. The beds are big and the place is spotless.
Their city locations mean Z Hotels don’t have restaurants which is ne when room rates are so reasonable. Croissants and cereal set us up for the day and each evening there’s free cheese and wine in the lounge area.
Rooms from £65.
St Ermin’s Hotel
Best for: A fabulous city wedding
If London’s sights appeal, historical St Ermin’s is a fabulous choice – it’s a short walk to Big Ben or Westminster Abbey, or wander to St James’s Park or the National Theatre. But perhaps you could take a shortcut – it’s rumoured that a tunnel runs from underneath the lobby staircase all the way to the Palace of Westminster!
Arriving at St Ermin’s through the pretty tree-lined courtyard, we were greeted with a beautiful lobby, opulent chandelier and impressive staircase. Our gorgeous room with marble bathroom, fluffy robes and enormous bed was perfect. Downstairs there are three stunning rooms in which you could hold your wedding ceremony or reception – each more dramatic than the last.
In the Caxton Grill, cured salmon with horseradish crème fraîche and goat’s cheese with apricots and olive oil crumble were followed by superb llet of beef and ricotta tortellini. Desserts were extraordinary – lemonade parfait with Douglas r sorbet and lemon meringue, and coconut panna cotta with mango sorbet and coriander.
Doubles from £209.
Best for: A romantic honeymoon
A stroll through Green Park and down a courtyard in St James’s, brought us to Dukes London. Ideally located for Buckingham Palace, Pall Mall and Piccadilly, Dukes is a gorgeous haven.
The red-bricked entrance, complete with ornate balconies and meticulous window boxes, led into a calm (and beautifully scented) lobby. The legendary Dukes Bar – famous for its martinis – leads off the main lobby and is so snug and cosy you could hole up here for your entire stay. The traditional lift (wood-panelled and with a plush seating area) took us up to our room. We stayed in The Duke of Albany’s Suite – beautifully furnished and with gorgeous views from our balcony of the skyline over St James’s Park.
Dinner in the elegant, mirrored
GBR restaurant was a delight. From the Charlestown mussels to Loch Duart salmon, followed by raspberry Eton mess, we were in heaven. The extensive breakfast menu also had something for everyone. From smashed avocado to waffles with pancetta, served by the friendliest staff, it made for a great start to our day.
Rooms from £320 incl. breakfast.
Great Northern Hotel
Best for: A dual-city mini-moon
The Great Northern Hotel, or GNH, is in an unbeatable location if you’re nipping off to Paris on the Eurostar – it’s just 25 metres from the terminal, set in the heart of regenerated King’s Cross. Surrounded by cool bars and new, exciting restaurants and shops, the GNH is also just a stroll away from Regent’s Canal, the British Library, Central Saint Martins and a host of great galleries.
Grade II-listed, and beautifully restored, we adored the mixture of old and new at this boutique hotel. The long, sweeping corridors
led to our Cubitt room,
in gorgeous shades of
olive green, with sash
windows, high ceilings
and leather furniture.
Each floor also has a complimentary pantry, stocked with homemade cakes, Nespresso machines and newspapers.
After a gorgeous cocktail in the softly lit, art-lined GNH Bar,we made our way into the elegant Plum + Spilt Milk restaurant. From our leather booth, under hand-blown glass lights, we admired the amazing views through the floor- to-ceiling windows. With advice from the knowledgeable staff, we enjoyed starters of seared Loch Fyne scallops with samphire, and Devon crab meat with wasabi, followed by slow-roasted belly of lamb and aromatic duck breast. The iced peanut parfait is not something we’ll forget easily, and the sticky olive oil and pistachio cake was a triumph.
Rooms from £189.
Need some London wedding shopping inspiration? Check out the top 24 London wedding shops