Discover a world of intimate charm when you step inside London’s best boutique hotels.
From one end of the Thames to the other, London is packed with distinct boroughs and lively neighbourhoods for travellers of all persuasions – but where you stay has the potential to make or break your trip.
While big brands aren’t hard to find in the big city, it’s often worth hunting down its hidden gems. From intimate service that makes you feel like the hotel’s most important guest to quirky onsite bars and uncrowded restaurants; there’s something undeniably special about going boutique.
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From elaborate townhouses with enviable postcodes to hip hideaways that redefine modern luxury, here is our pick of London’s best boutique hotels.
Best for regal opulence with a modern twist: Hotel 41
Peering out across the Royal Mews at Buckingham Palace, this award-winning, five-star outpost is hidden within The Rubens at the Palace Hotel – and is no doubt the quirkier way to get your fix of regal splendour.
With just 30 intimate rooms brimming with personality, the hotel is able to offer service that truly goes above and beyond – with two members of staff to every hotel guest. Facilities include an exceptional onsite cinema, stylish rooftop bar and grand Executive Lounge sure to impress even the most well-travelled of guests.
Best for a journey through time: Roseate House London
Reconnect with a bygone era of refinery and elegance while unearthing London’s modern marvels with an elegant stay at Roseate House London. Just 48 rooms and suites stretch across three heritage townhouses dating back to 1842, and each expertly brings to life original Victorian features of rich tapestries and eye-catching oil paintings. Paired with modern comforts, attentive service and those all-important personal touches, this is a true five-star boutique experience.
The verdant grounds of Hyde Park and Kensington Gardens are within walking distance, as are the world-famous Victoria and Albert Museum and Natural History Museum, plus the shopping meccas of Selfridges, Harrods and Liberty London.
Best for décor that makes your heart sing: Henrietta Hotel
Henrietta Hotel’s playful DNA is evident in all elements of this 18-room, boutique Covent Garden townhouse. The tasteful interiors fashioned by Dorothée Meilichzon add to the hotel’s lively yet distinguished atmosphere in the form of velvet details, royal blue and baby pink tones, and eye-catching Art Deco shapes. An upgraded stay in the Grand London Eye Junior Suite is worth its weight in gold, with a private balcony and views over – you guessed it – the London Eye.
Tastemakers will love the proximity to Soho, Leicester Square and the Strand, bustling with markets and boutiques, famed theatres, galleries and some of the city's best restaurants.
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Best for authentic English charm: The Montague on the Gardens
The many treasures of leafy Bloomsbury – including the British Museum – can be found right on the doorstep of The Montague on the Gardens, one of London's best boutique hotels spanning nine connected townhouses. This quintessentially English stay proves the best things come in small packages. Grab drinks at the lively Leopard Bar, where the sounds of live jazz fill the room, dine at the award-winning onsite restaurant, and keep an eye out for seasonal pop-ups, including a winter ski lodge and summer beach bar.
When you are ready to venture out, the theatre-filled West End district and the upscale department stores of Regent and Bond Street are easily accessible.
Best of waterside elegance: The Royal Horseguards
Discover true resplendence in a hotel fit for James Bond. Compromised of two heritage buildings – formerly used as an embassy for both Russia and America and once the home of the first Chief of the Secret Intelligence Service, Sir Mansfield Cumming – this historic property reflects its proud heritage and offers Victorian elegance, perfectly positioned on the banks of the River Thames.
You really couldn't ask for a finer location to explore the city. Located right in the heart of Westminster beside Whitehall Gardens, it offers countless sightseeing opportunities, all within an easy stroll of the hotel. Wander over to the London Eye, marvel at the works in The National Gallery, pay a visit to Big Ben or stroll a little further down to Buckingham Palace. The much-loved Covent Garden, buzzing Leicester Square and trendy Soho, with its countless theatres and restaurants, are all also easily reachable on foot.
Best for escaping the buzz of Central London: Richmond Hill Hotel
A restful stay at Richmond Hill Hotel is the perfect antidote to the centrally located behemoths. This 18th-century abode is overflowing with personality and is surrounded by some of the city’s best vantage points, including Richmond Park, the River Thames and Kew Gardens. No two rooms are the same, and the cosy onsite restaurant 144 On the Hill serves an award-winning menu of classic delights.
Stay local and go in search of the resident deer at Richmond Park, or take the train into central London (just 30 minutes away) for a dose of sightseeing. In summer, return to the hotel’s sun-drenched terrace for a jug of Pimm's or snuggle up inside in winter and take your pick of gins from the extensive menu.
Best for enchanting grandeur: The Egerton House Hotel
Two 19th-century, Victorian townhouses provide the perfect backdrop for a remarkable stay in the heart of high-end Knightsbridge. It’s the little things that make this tiny piece of boutique heaven special; staff are always on hand to deal with requests, rooms are fitted with stunning four-poster beds, and you can even bring your four-legged friend with prior arrangement.
Stepping inside this peaceful hotel feels like stepping inside an immaculately styled country house, thanks to its location on a quiet tree-lined residential road. Yet when you’re ready to explore, top-rated dining, the iconic shopping hubs of Harrods and Harvey Nichols, and the lush greenery of Hyde Park are at your fingertips.
Best for contemporary glamour in a prestigious setting: The Athenaeum Hotel & Residences
This sleek and contemporary hideaway in Mayfair is one we will proudly share with you – but will not blame you for wanting to keep to yourself. The eye-catching vertical green wall on the hotel’s façade perfectly complements the views over the treetops of Green Park, and the statement, Art Deco-inspired furnishings and chrome accents take the definition of modern elegance to new heights.
Throw in a sauna and spa access, a guest-only rooftop bar and lounge, plus exquisite service, and you’ve got yourself one of London’s best – and most underrated – boutique stays.
Best for heritage-inspired West London bliss: The Milestone Hotel & Residences
Find respite within this five-star heritage sanctuary overlooking Kensington Palace. This lavish West London hotel is steeped in rich history and stretches across three Victorian townhouses that date back to 1883, with the hotel first opening its doors in the 1920s.
Today, the illustrious furnishings, patterned carpets, marble accents and plush textures effortlessly transport guests back in time to an era of old-world charm, while maintaining modern conveniences like a sunlit conservatory, sauna and heated pool. Notable spots nearby include the Natural History Museum and Science Museum, the Royal Albert Hall, Notting Hill and Knightsbridge.
London's best boutique hotels are waiting for you. Find your next escape here.