I’m greeted warmly by name by the doorman, concierge, bellman and front-desk staff, who remember me from a previous visit. The stylish lobby sets the scene for the clubby, jazz-age feel of the whole hotel, with art and photographs of the era on the walls.
The hotel sits a block from the main entrance to Selfridges and one of London’s grandest gardens, Grosvenor Square. Yet the atmosphere in Brown Hart Gardens, a little one-way street, lends itself more to the leafy calm and Mayfair mansion blocks than the nearby bustle and noise of Oxford Street, from where Bond Street Underground station and a phalanx of buses feed the city and suburbs.
The imposing, magnolia-coloured, five-storey block was built as Macy’s garage in 1926. It was still an Avis garage until 2012, when the transformation began into a 1920s hotel through the eyes of a fictitious New York hotelier, Jimmy Beaumont, who recreates a Manhattan hotel in London after his fortunes fall foul of Prohibition. The hotel, which has 73 rooms, opened in 2014. Walls and furniture are dark, warm woods – cheery, walnut and oak. A beautiful, well-lit bathroom of white marble and chrome is the best feature. The wardrobes are generous; there’s a large desk, a tub chair and a pile of well-chosen books (from the 1920s and 1930s) to read. Despite the popularity of the American Bar and Colony Grill Room on the ground floor, and the hotel’s proximity to Oxford Street, the room is quiet.
Given its look and feel, I half expect to see Hercule Poirot emerging from the lift. The hotel has attracted a big American following, but affluent European guests have also begun to stay. The American Bar, also known as Jimmy’s, and the Colony Grill Room restaurant are abuzz with executives for breakfast and dinner, while ladies who lunch add to the daytime liveliness.
Staff are pleasant and professional; warm when engaged, but otherwise quietly unobtrusive. For guests troubled about tipping, the hotel suggests a fee of 5 per cent at the end of the stay, which is shared between those who serve.
This is the eighth venture for restaurateurs Chris Corbin and Jeremy King, whose best-known cafe is The Wolseley in Piccadilly. The Colony Grill Room is a classic grill, with the hotel’s signature art deco twist. Banquettes surround the edges, while John Mattos murals and caricatures share the walls with black-and-white portraits of between-the-wars celebrities. I have the lemon-flavoured chicken paillard (Â£19 [Dh102]), with fries; then a, rich crÃ¨me brûlÃ©e (Â£7 [Dh38]). The complimentary Beaumont Breakfast – coffee, fresh juice, scones with jam and cream – is a deliciously indulgent start to the day. The Cub Room, exclusively for in-house guests, also offers the breakfast; and service from the bar. The room-service menu is well-presented.
The small, but perfectly formed art deco hammam and spa, inspired by the Turkish baths at the RAC in Pall Mall and the original YMCA in New York.
It’s admittedly a London phenomenon, but the size of the smallest room makes it difficult to find space for luggage.
A comfortable, grand yet intimate, service-orientated, art deco dream come true.
The bottom line
Classic rooms at The Beaumont cost from Â£395 (Dh2,120.50) per night, including taxes, Wi-Fi, movies, breakfast and use of the Cub Room.
Source: art & life