MY LUXURY RESTORATIVE WEEKEND AT THE BEAUMOUNT HOTEL: UNCOVERED
This story starts with my driver pulling into Mayfair's Balderton Street last weekend, on a slightly drizzly November morning. I had booked a luxury staycation at the award-winning five-star Beaumont Hotel, recommended to me by more Americans and Mayfairians than I can count. It’s a location of choice due to it’s privacy, but also for the close proximity to Mount Street, art galleries, famous museums and the West End.
On this particular autumn morning I had loaded up the car with enough essential oils, stilettos, faux fur shrugs, emergency pleather bound notebooks and dresses to last an entire month (one can never be too prepared). This multi-faceted hotel can provide a hedonist with hours of fun.
And so it begins...
I arrived at the hotel raring to check-in. The super friendly and professional concierge appeared next to the car out of thin air and willingly caught the suitcase from my poor driver's breaking arms. My OH and I darted off towards the hotel's dramatic revolving doors, eagerly anticipating the Art Deco thrills to come, along with our usual Saturday 3pm champagne.
My only previous experience of The Beaumont prior to this Autumn visit was a business meeting in The American Bar back in the summer months (I had been raving about the bar's dangerously tempting martinis ever since). The American Bar is dark and brooding, with walls adorned with over 300 black and white photographs of prominent American musicians, cinema starlets, musicians, sportsmen, politicians and various other beautiful faces from the 20s, 30s, 40s and 50s. It's an ideal place for those who are severely into espionage - feigned or otherwise. I contracted the Gatsby fever right away (it never really left me).
This showstopper of a hotel is comprised of 50 impressive bedrooms and 23 glorious suites, including The Roosevelt Suite (a presidential suite of up to five bedrooms with private terrace), The Terrace Suite (a one-bedroom suite with a private terrace) and ROOM, by renowned artist Antony Gormley (an inhabitable one-bedroom sculpture).
I headed for the polished reception desk and was instantly greeted by an array of welcoming smiles and handshakes from impeccably presented staff. My companion lagged ever so slightly behind me, surveying the elegance and glamour of a pre-war Mayfair in the vast and warming lobby with wide eyes. We were taken aback by the striking black and white chequer-board flooring, enviable vintage lamps, shiny Art Deco seating, original objets d’art and oil paintings from the 20s and 30s.
A wonderful female member of The Beaumont team showed us up to the fourth floor of the hotel via the wooden panelled lift, another art-filled time capsule referencing my favourite bygone eras. We were booked into The Terrace Suite and I can honestly say that from the moment the door of room 401 was opened, a true burst of spirited glee ensued (I believe the 1920s word for this is ‘Bearcat’: a lively, spirited woman, possibly with a fiery streak). The elegance and glamour had crept up from the ground floor, continuing seamlessly throughout the generous entrance hall of the suite: an Art Deco heaven balancing on polished dark wooden parquet flooring (my favourite).
Floor-to-ceiling sliding doors were hurriedly (and carefully) pushed aside to reveal the bedroom: a blissful haven stocked with an array of soft fabrics, vintage books, The Beaumont's own chocolate (featuring edible carved images of the hotel) and a collection of black and white photographs on the wall. A notable illustrative panorama sits above the bed, showcasing excitable crowd scenes from the 20s and 30s.
Another set of sliding doors further down the hall concealed a spectacular bathroom, complete with a TV, speakers connecting to the entertainment system in the living room, Dr Harris products, a bath, a shower, separated toilet and underfloor heating (hello).
At this point I was quite ready to move in permanently, but in the interim it was time to test those speakers out with some Jimi Hendrix on the wireless. Please note that due to the separate shower room and toilet, it is quite possible for up to three people to hang out in this bathroom without bumping into each other.
A second bathroom (some people need time out) was revealed at the end of the hall and finally a spacious open plan living area with terrace doors was discovered. An impressive bar occupied a generous space in the middle of the room, fully loaded with Bollinger, red wine, sherry, Anchor Steam, juice and still / sparkling water. Some terrific snacks including peanut M&Ms and smoked almonds were uncovered, absolutely perfect for my notorious midnight feasts - such fun.
This area of the suite is great for:
- Continental breakfasting with the love of your life
- Entertaining friends with Bollinger and a 1920s playlist
- Relaxing with a sherry and some New York hotel lobby lounge / jazz music
- Playing group Scrabble with Beaumont branded gummy bears (both supplied)
- Peaceful alone time with an Earl Grey the Condé Nast Traveler magazine
The pièce de résistance of The Terrace Suite is the spacious outdoor area with sun lounging and alfresco dining capabilities. This loveable terrace and the large casement windows at the front-facing side of the suite reveal Balderton Street and Brown Hart Gardens below, particularly picturesque at this time of the year. This is an ideal spot for Flâneurism and unwinding in the afternoon sun. I couldn't wait to get out there with my books and a tea on the Sunday afternoon.
OH and I stuck on some New York hotel lobby lounge music throughout the suite and opened the bottle of Bolli in order to celebrate being encapsulated in the very essence of elegance, glamour and personalised pre-war Mayfair hospitality. I could not stop to sip and reflect for long, however, for I was booked in for an afternoon 'Perfect Balance' facial at The Beaumont Spa. It was time to restore my radiance after far too many late nights in the office.
Londoners, are you:
- Bent and broken from your boss cracking the whip?
- Bleary-eyed from your husband / wife keeping you awake for hours on end with their incessant nagging (or possibly a rhyming word with quite the opposite meaning)?
- Parent to a young child / children who refuse to acknowledge the significance of the moon?
- Dehydrated and consequently ageing dramatically due to long-haul travel trips and too many jolly tipples?
If you said 'yes' to one or more of the above life scenarios, I suggest that you check into The Beaumont Spa for an emergency facial. My restorative 60 minute 'Perfect Balance' facial was absolutely out of this world and I was very impressed with the Pai Skincare products used throughout (all cruelty-free). This was finished off with a brilliant head massage, at which point I was drifting off into a very serene and blissful state. A range of treatments are on offer to satisfy individual needs, but you'll have to stay tuned for my upcoming Beaumont Spa feature for more intricate information.
After a quick getting ready sesh (cue: head to toe in crushed velvet in royal blue and gold), it was time to hit The Colony Grill Room. For this talked-about restaurant, American artist John Mattos was commissioned to produce large murals depicting American sporting scenes at legendary sporting venues. Mattos also produced a series of 48 black and white cartoons of famous characters from the 1920s, 30s and 40s. Diners are sharing food and drink with the likes of Ernest Hemingway, Scott Fitzgerald, DH Lawrence, Cary Grant Noel Coward, Tallulah Bankhead and Pablo Picasso, a cultured feast for the eyes. I am told that Jimmy Beaumont, the fictional owner and manager of The Beaumont Hotel, had a lot of friends in high places.
We ordered a winning combination of Cajun Spicy Swordfish, Seared Sea Bream with Fennel and Louis Roederer Champagne for dinner. Already wowed by the flavoursome quality and presentation of each meal, impeccable service topped this off as a very memorable dining experience. This is a testament to high ‘Mayfair’ expectations and a huge credit to the hotel restaurant, which was full to the brim with locals and guests alike.
It's time for me to say adieu for now, but I really do hope those of you in London and beyond will pay a visit to this stunning hotel. I am all about a staycation within the city of London (I hate travelling long distance over a cherished weekend). This multi-faceted time capsule of a hotel provided me with a luxurious, special and impeccably hospitable experience that I will hold very dear to my heart for the rest of my life.