The Arch London is a five-star boutique hotel located in the heart of the UK Capital, the perfect location for those wanting to wander through Hyde Park or browse the many stores on Oxford Street for some retail therapy.
Launched only five years ago, The Arch London spans seven architecturally-magnificent Grade II listed Georgian townhouses and two mews homes, and features 82 individually-appointed rooms (including four suites) set across six floors. Black and white alphabet prints line the length of the gallery-inspired halls, and when taking the lift, visitors will quickly notice that the fourth floor is missing, a digit which is synonymous with bad luck in Asian culture.
We stayed in “Chancery”, one of the two highly spacious one-bedroom suites overlooking the adjacent mews, and boasting the size of a small apartment. Here you can find a modern kitchenette complete with a double induction hob, Nespresso machine and Jing tea set, a living room with a full stocked minibar (soft drinks are complementary) and Loewe TV, and a library and writing desk. The sleeping area was nicely furnished with a handmade king bed sporting uber-soft duck down duvets and pillows, another sizeable flatscreen LCD TV with Sky channels, as well as comfortable seating and an iPod docking station.
The large ensuite bathroom, which comes complete with a double sink, bath and rain shower, is lined with a generous selection of nicely-scented rum and peppermint toiletries from New York’s MALIN + GOETZ. Guests can also continue to watch their favourite programmes when performing their ablutions courtesy of the wall-mounted flatscreen LCD TV and ceiling speakers, a nice added touch.
There is a good choice of eateries and bars when staying at the property aside from the complementary and exotic flavoured drinks laid on for occupants to enjoy. The first is the cosy 30-cover HUNter 486 restaurant which takes its name from the 1950’s district dialling code for Marylebone, and is dressed with impressive glass chandeliers, stylish brown studded leather sofas and purple velour chairs. The kitchen and roaring fire of the stone oven is also open plan which allows guests to witness the creativity of the team of chefs first-hand. One other plus point is that the staff are very well versed in catering for specific dietary requirements.
The recently-launched menu, in conjunction with the property’s fifth anniversary, is inspired by the ‘Best of British’, and was jointly developed by the hotel’s Head Chef, Gary Durrant, alongside Henrietta Green, a food consultant, author and broadcaster. There is plenty to choose from, and dishes range from salad of crispy oxtail with cream of horseradish, and potted duck with fruit chutney and sourdough, through to peppered loin of venison with beetroot purée. There is also the stone oven in which a range of succulent meat dishes are cooked such as roast Norfolk black free range chicken.
For the starter, I enjoyed a delicious pea and mint soup which is artistically poured in front of you around a central helping of mascarpone. My partner chose the chilli-infused butternut squash salad which was an equally great opening course. Come the mains, and I decided to try the lemon sole (the ‘Fish of the Day’) with sides of fries and roasted parsnip, carrot and fennel, whilst my guest opted for the Lamb Shank, also from the Stone Oven section. To finish the meal, I went straight for the rhubarb and apple crumble. My partner, on the other hand, was tempted by blood oranges, pomegranate and toasted almonds with sorbet, a nice palate cleanser.
The Bar within Hunter 486 also serves a full range of classic and innovative cocktails (we sampled an exquisite lychee and pear Martini, and an in-house version of the Mojito laden with passion fruit), fine wines and beers, and a cocktail making master-class experience from the bar’s skilled mixologist is on offer upon request. Adjacent to the restaurant is Le Salon de Champagne which is lined with intimate booths, Lastly, the Martini Library is another area to sit back and unwind, whilst admiring the period stone fireplaces and impressive collection of books by Taschen and Daunt.
In the morning, after a very good night’s sleep, breakfast back in HUNter 486 took the form of a central continental-style buffet which has everything from nuts to smoked salmon to fresh fruit. There is also an à la carte menu for those craving something hot and more substantial to kick off the day. We tucked into soya milk porridge with summer berries, and Portobello mushroom on sourdough with poached eggs and Hollandaise sauce. Both were excellent.
If you are looking for a boutique hotel which oozes exceptional service, character and attention to detail, and which is a stone’s throw away from the Capital’s bustling streets, then look no further than The Arch London.
Free Wi-Fi is available throughout the property. Prices start from £205 per night for a standard room, and £1,005 for a suite (including full use of the gym). For reservations, please call 0044 (0)20 7724 4700 or visit www.thearchlondon.com.
Photo credit: The Arch London