Brown’s Hotel, Mayfair
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About Brown’s Hotel, Mayfair
Brown's is such a vibrant, friendly place - be it the restaurant, bar or in the lounge taking tea! And the rooms are fabulous ..... I would happily live there!
Brown’s Hotel is London’s first ever hotel, opening it’s doors way back in 1810. In 2005, the hotel underwent a makeover and the superb designer Olga Polizzi worked her magic. The hotel is quirky, interesting, a perfect warren to explore for little ones and it’s exceedingly friendly. History is screaming from the rafters … Alexander Graham Bell made the first ever telephone call from here, it is believed that Rudyard Kipling penned ‘The Jungle Book’ and Agatha Christie wrote ‘At Bertram’s Hotel’ here - Winston Churchill liked the place so much he had his very own bunker built here!
A hotel fact: in 1837, James Brown and his wife Sarah, Lady Byron's maid, opened the first ever hotel in London; that is now Brown's Hotel, which has retained for over 170 years the special atmosphere imparted to it by its founders: a place guaranteed to ensure comfort, privacy and understated service.
11 Georgian town houses form Brown's Hotel which comprises 117 luxurious rooms, including 29 suites, the Albemarle restaurant which boasts three AA Rosettes and The English Tea Room, The Donovan Bar - a truly buzzing bar (which incidentally serves a multitude of delicious cocktails) and a relaxing spa.
The hotel is extremely refined, in an extremely English fashion, but it is in no way stuffy or unwelcoming - as is want in some places! The atmosphere is friendly, bustling, vibrant and calm (not sure how!) - the welcome very warm and very sincere. It starts with the twinkly doormen and extremely helpful concierge and goes on .....
It's always good to see other people with kids in a place to gauge how easy it is to visit. Lots of little ones were enjoying afternoon tea in the beautiful and surprisingly relaxed (given how busy it was) English Tea Room - together with many adults. All were enjoying the happy, country house bustling affair whilst scoffing some of the most delectable delicacies!
The décor is subtle and traditional - there is a fitting historical ambience to the hotel - yet it is combined with many contemporary pieces; you catch a sudden flash of (amazing) contemporary art which sits perfectly with it's surroundings - all tastes are seemingly catered for and all combine beautifully.
The bedrooms and suites are stunning. Individually designed and exquisitely and comfortably furnished all rooms are air-conditioned and have dual-line phones, voice messaging, broadband Internet connections and digital flat-screen LCD televisions with interactive video on demand, in-room bars and a personal safe. You will enviably be offered an obscene choice of pillow and mattress combinations - you will have no excuse to not have had the best night's sleep!
For the adults Brown's has nailed the "being a grown up and feeling comfortable in your surroundings and having all you could need" requirement. As for children they get treated exceedingly well too! From age appropriate gifts for their arrival, to your rooms being purposefully prepared with themed bedding to Junior bath accessories, including flannels, bubble bath, a temperature thermometer and of course a quack, quack (Aggie's favourite).
At bed-time they get to snuggle in their bathrobes and cuddle their own Brown's bear whilst drinking milk with their home-made cookies. Techno Toys, for those over 13, are provided including i-pod docking stations and play-stations. If you book the Classic Suite they also get DVD players and free internet access via their in-room televisions (which will be content protected) and much more.
Should you want a spa day The Spa at Brown's has some amazingly indulgent treatments to enjoy. However, there is also a range of children's spa treatments for you all to get pampered, little ones can now have twinkle toes or a Teen Facial Glow; treatments are at an additional cost.
Eating here is a treat - The Albemarle specialises in the finest seasonal British cuisine and has retained it's Three AA Rosettes given to "outstanding restaurants that demand recognition well beyond the local area", to prove it! The restaurant space is beautiful and is home to the works of some British Art greats, including Rankin, Tracey Emin and Fiona Rae - who needs colouring books? It either perfectly provides a fabulous setting for high tea with the kids (from 5:30) or for a romantic meal should you call in a babysitter.
Breakfast, lunch and dinner are served here. A full a la carte menu is offered, alongside a special set menu, which changes daily, of just £25 for 2 courses and £30 for 3 courses.
Children have their own Room Service Menu with a range of delicious treats should it be required. Those under three receive complimentary food and beverages; three to 12 year olds receive a 50% reduction on all menus. Dishes might include toasted sandwiches, home-made fish fingers with chips and mushy peas, Brown's mini cheeseburgers or free-range chicken.
Recently voted ‘Top London Afternoon Tea 2009' by The Tea Guild, the award-winning English Tea Room's Traditional Afternoon Tea comprises a choice of 17 teas, including Brown's own blend, delicious finger sandwiches, an assortment of delicate pastries, fruit and plain scones with clotted cream and strawberry preserve and freshly baked cakes from the trolley. Traditional Afternoon Tea from £35.00 per person, Champagne Afternoon Tea from £44.00 per person, Rosé Champagne Afternoon Tea from £48.00 per person. Children eat for half price.
Tea is served between 3pm and 6pm Monday to Friday and between 1pm and 6pm Saturday and Sunday. A pianist plays throughout.
Despite it's fantastic, central position Brown's is quiet within - a joy when you do just want to chill out and escape the masses. However, when you get that urge to get back out there it's within striking distance of a myriad of things to do for you all, including fantastic museums, art galleries, shops (shops and more shops!), West End theatres and parks.