It had been a few years since I visited my favorite city in the world, but there are certain places that tug at your heart strings, that always exist within you, that call you home. This for me is London. Whether I lived there in a former life or am meant to be there in this one, it’s a place I feel most content, and in a word, happy. Now, I’m not so naive as to realize that when I am there, I am not living a reality. I can afford a week in South Kensington, the best neighborhood in the world. And, living there, perhaps would prove quite different. But for now, dabble in the fantasy with me as I take you to my latest favorite hotel in London and definitely the best hotel in South Kensington…The Kensington.
A Mr. & Mrs. Smith recommended property, this hotel has recently undergone a £20m renovation and offers a unique townhouse experience better than even the comforts of home (I was pleasantly surprised to find an American plug in our room). The decor is stunning—fashionable and elegant, a place you wish you could afford to live until the end of time. We experienced two different rooms (they were so kind as to upgrade us the last night) and I highly recommend the Deluxe. While both spoil you with fine linens, bathrobes, complimentary wireless and a modern bathroom, the Superior room was a bit small (my only gripe), while the Deluxe room was ironically, superior. The Afternoon Tea looked sophisticated, booming and was unfortunately booked (make advanced reservations), but we did partake in the “Great British Breakfast,” which, while a bit pricey (with the exchange rate), was the perfect way to begin our first morning. And while you never really need to leave, this is in fact, London. So, take a step out your door, you’re only moments from Hyde Park, Kensington Palace, Knightsbridge and my favorite Indian restaurant ever.
Oh wait, can you hear it? That old familiar sound of London calling. Glad I have a place to stay.
NOTE: I previously wrote about The Cranley hotel in South Kensington, and I still highly recommend it, especially if you need a more affordable option. To compare the two, The Cranley has a more bed & breakfast feel, while The Kensington offers a full hotel experience (i.e. restaurant, bar, concierge, masseuse).