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Hotel Highlights

  • Prime London location: sophisticated Mayfair
  • The first European outpost of Cut, Wolfgang Puck’s paean to steak
  • Works by top British artists grace every floor

Overview

The handsome 45 Park Lane hotel in posh Mayfair overlooking Hyde Park, offers everything the discerning traveller to London requires – glamorous Thierry W Despont-designed rooms, a fabulous (and meaty) Wolfgang Puck restaurant, an elegant cocktail bar and a gallery’s worth of original British art, including 16 pieces by Damian Hirst.

Smith Extra

Here's what you get for booking 45 Park Lane with us:

A bottle of wine selected by the head sommelier

Facilities

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Need To Know

Rooms

45, including 11 suites and one penthouse.

Check–out

12 noon but flexible, subject to availability and a charge (half the room rate until 4pm). Earliest check-in, 3pm.

Rates

Double rooms from $739.96 (£446), excluding tax at 20 per cent.

More details

Breakfast isn’t included (choose from cooked, Continental or à la carte, with dishes ranging from £5 to £25).

Also

The hotel has a fleet of nimble-knuckled beauty therapists armed with Aromatherapy Associates products. Try the signature 45 Park Lane Experience, a 45-minute full-body treatment including an exfoliation and massage. Alternatively, order a bath ritual for £20. A therapist will nip in, fairy-like, to fill your tub with an oil of your choice (deep relax, de-stress muscle, jet-lag remedy and so on), light a candle and provide a herbal tea to match the mood.

At the hotel

Gym, library, stash of DVDs, cinema room (which can be booked for parties and events), free WiFi throughout. In rooms: iPad, iPod dock, flatscreen TV, CD/DVD player, minibar.

Our favourite rooms

For the best views of London, book one of the Deluxe Kings, which count floor-to-ceiling windows among their charms. The Executive Queen rooms are perched on the corner on the building, so have a double dose of London lookouts. For the most princely of stays, book the opulent Penthouse Suite and toast the city from your terrace.

Packing tips

Picnic hamper for the park; Marni for Mayfair; gym togs for the running machine.

Also

Take a couple of the hotel’s Brompton bicycles with you to the park (they’re free for guests to borrow).

Children

Little Smiths can come too. Cribs are free, as are extra beds for 12-year-olds and under, babysitting with a nanny can be arranged (£10 an hour; minimum four hours), and the restaurant has a menu designed for junior palates (there's also room service).

Food & Drink

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Hotel Restaurant

Acclaimed Austrian chef Wolfgang Puck has enjoyed considerable success Stateside with his various ventures: Spago, Cut, Chinois and Trattoria de Lupo among them. His steak is the stuff of meaty dreams; his seafood is beyond reproach. Sample both here, in the hotel’s glittering, red-gold European outpost of Cut. Forget steakhouse decor: metallic-puff lights, glossy marble floors and heavy draped curtains set the tone.

Hotel Bar

The mood in Bar 45, a lipstick-red corner of the hotel, is relaxed: a pleasant burble of conversation rises against the understated pop and chill-out tracks. If you’re hungry/tipsy, order some light bites from the bar menu, which features fashionable fodder such as rough cuts, mini kobe sliders and Reuben sandwiches stuffed with house-smoked pastrami. The Bloody Marys are exemplary.

Last orders

Wet your whistle at the bar between 12 noon and 1.30am. The restaurant is open until 11pm (10.30pm on Sundays and public holidays).

Room service

The impressive room service menu spans all three meals, is available 24 hours, and includes items such as oxtail bouillon with bone marrow dumplings, Wagyu six-ounce steak, and dark chocolate and whisky cake.

Smith Insider

Dress code

City sophisticate: we spotted three pairs of Louboutins in as many minutes. The men are slick and suited, the women frocked and coiffed.

Top table

Sit by the window to watch Londoners at your leisure; corner tables are more private.

Local Guide

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Eat, drink, see, do: local favourites and more…

Worth getting out of bed for

 For the best shopping, head to Knightsbridge, South Kensington and Oxford Circus, all a short bus or Tube ride away. Harvey Nichols (www.harveynichols.com) is just down the road (pick up picnic provisions from its food hall), along with a clutch of tempting Lebanese restaurants and delis, including Noura (www.noura.co.uk). If you’re blessed with sunny weather, go jogging, walking or cycling in Hyde Park. Plenty of museums and galleries are close by: try the V&A (www.vam.ac.uk) or Natural History Museum (www.nhm.ac.uk) in South Kensington, or go to Piccadilly for the Royal Academy of Arts (www.royalacademy.org.uk). While you’re there, visit the Japan Centre (www.japancentre.com) just down the road for sushi and sweets, and have a cocktail in Waterstones’ secret weapon: its top-floor bar, 5th View (www.5thview.co.uk).

Local restaurants

The Dorchester hotel (+44 (0)20 7629 8888; www.thedorchester.com), 45 Park Lane’s sibling property and neighbour, houses four culinary temptations: Alain Ducasse at the Dorchester for classic French cuisine served in a sit-straight setting; The Grill at the Dorchester for grilled things; The Promenade for afternoon tea, informal dining and a tinkling pianist; China Tang for flawless Cantonese. Dine alongside celebrities and models inside the Smith-approved Metropolitan London at Nobu (+44 (0)20 7447 4747; www.noburestaurants.com), which serves Michelin-starred sushi and sashimi for the fashion pack, and is just steps away from the hotel at 19 Old Park Lane. Try Pollen Street Social (+44 (0)20 7290 7600; www.pollenstreetsocial.com) for Modern British fare. Head chef Jason Atherton served under Gordon Ramsay at Maze, and serves seductive little plates such as squid and cauliflower with pasta and a punchy broth.

Local bars

 Have cocktails at Mews of Mayfair (+44 (0)20 7518 9388; www.mewsofmayfair.com) on Lancashire Court; sip champagne at the Smith-approved Connaught hotel; savour some hard liquor at the Athenaeum hotel’s Whisky Bar (+44 (0)20 7499 3464; www.athenaeumhotel.com).

+ Enlarge
Majestic Mayfair

45 Park Lane

45 Park Lane, Mayfair, London, W1K 1PN, United Kingdom

This hotel has a position to be proud of, right on Park Lane in the heart of Mayfair, with Hyde Park just opposite.

Planes

London City airport (www.londoncityairport.com) is eight miles away, and runs regular flights to more than 30 destinations, including Paris, New York, Edinburgh and Barcelona. The Picadilly Tube (www.tfl.gov.uk) runs from London Heathrow (www.heathrowairport.com) to Hyde Park Corner station, just minutes away.

Trains

London Victoria is two miles from the hotel, with services connecting to Brighton, Hove, Worthing, Eastbourne, Canterbury and Dover (www.nationalrail.co.uk). You can hop on the Victoria line, or the Circle and District line from Victoria station. Hyde Park Corner, on the Picadilly line, is the nearest Tube stop (www.tfl.gov.uk).

Automobiles

45 Park Lane offers valet parking: £20 for three hours, £30 for four hours and £50 for 24 hours.

Reviews

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Anonymous review

by Kathryn Flett , Worldly writer

Even the most devoted Londoners might one day leave; but whatever their motivation, they’ll never do it because they’re ‘tired’ of the English capital. Like a particularly creative lover, London always keeps you on your toes, surprising you even when you think you’re ‘over’ surprises. How can you ever grow weary of that? Nothing piqued this more potently t…
Read more

45 Park Lane

Anonymous review by Kathryn Flett , Worldly writer

Even the most devoted Londoners might one day leave; but whatever their motivation, they’ll never do it because they’re ‘tired’ of the English capital. Like a particularly creative lover, London always keeps you on your toes, surprising you even when you think you’re ‘over’ surprises. How can you ever grow weary of that? Nothing piqued this more potently than checking into the shimmering, sophisticated 45 Park Lane.

Having made the move to a sleepy seaside town on the South Coast a few years ago, I always felt a nagging temptation to fall back into bed with my hometown. When I carry out these affairs it is in a spirit of perpetual re-discovery, and my dear London never disappoints.

Sprawled across a triangular wodge of prime W1 real estate, there’s nothing subtle about 45 Park Lane. The doorman guarding the glass entrance is uniformed and immaculate; the soaring lobby with its ruby-red leather armchairs, draped curtains and lights fashioned from puffs of silver wire feels more like a member’s club than a hotel. Warm, with an art-deco gleam, this is a truly ‘outernational’ hotel with the added frisson of having a guess-the-provenance clientele and staff.

Our spacious fourth-floor room was elegantly woody and far from ‘girly’, replete with iPad and a bed that rates among my all-time most comfortable. In our Thierry W Despont-styled space Mr Smith and I giggled like a pair of wide-eyed provincial teenagers while we: a) failed to turn on lights; b) failed to tame the air-con; and c) failed open and close the blinds. And we even d) failed to locate a socket to charge our phones. Thankfully, we had our floor’s charming butler to come to the rescue.

While 45 Park Lane may look like a Bladerunner take on the glamorous 1920s, its heartbeat is definitively 21st century, so both humans and Replicants should feel right at home. Technophobes, beware: everything here is controlled via a touchscreen phone system (at least in theory – the paint was barely dry at the Dorchester’s little sis for our visit and we experienced some to-be-expected teething niggles).

Mayfair may not be my old ’hood but it soon had us feeling like there is no quarter of London we’d rather be in. Few addresses are better appointed than this Hyde Park-side spot when it comes to carrying on with so many of the city’s headline acts (including a flirt with my hairdressers, Susan and Joel, at John Frieda: there are some things a girl just doesn’t give up when she quits the city.) We were also just around the corner from one of the city’s loveliest ‘villages’: beloved Shepherd’s Market still has real shops and pubs – it remains a rare genuine urban community thriving discreetly and stylishly but a swerve from the bright lights of Piccadilly. Having that secret 18th-century enclave and the cosy-but-cool Curzon cinema on our doorstep easily kept us busy until bedtime.

After a delicious room-service breakfast in the morning (an error with our egg order was resolved quick-smart), Mr Smith head to a meeting while I kept a date with round-the-corner Selfridges. An eagerly anticipated lunch at CUT was about a good a reason as we could have to reconvene back at the hotel at 1pm. The first European foray for Austrian-born, American-by-inclination superchef Wolfgang Puck, it recalled memories of a fabulous meal at his Santa Monica Chinois a decade ago.

A gallery’s worth of limited-edition Damien Hirsts and the kind of sprauncy see-and-be-seen diners would normally distract us from the food had it not been so compelling. Thanks to bygone days as a restaurant critic, I can be guilty of being picky, but I couldn’t fault any of the three courses. Tuna tartare with wasabi, aioli, ginger and togarashi crisps (no, me neither – but these tasty capsimum chips are definitely not Walkers), was followed by a melt-in-the-mouth filet mignon (with perfect frites) and a scrumptious banana cream pie. Our set-menu feast came to £55 a head including a glass of wine; given the quality of the food and service, that seemed almost insanely cheap… 24 hours in Mayfair can do that to you.

Feeling light of head and comfortably heavy everywhere else, Mr Smith and I ambled up Piccadilly to see an exhibition at the Royal Academy. After that, I whizzed Mr Smith up to the top of the Hilton (right next door to 45), for a cocktail-with-a-view at Windows. It’s a little cheesy, sure, but Mr Smith had never been – and if there is one place guaranteed to give a very different perspective on the city we’d both called home, it’s up there on the 28th floor at dusk.

Back in the quiet comfort of 45, I realised this is no fly-by-night flibbertigibbet of a boutique hotel (I always think of hotels in the feminine, like ships) – no, this one’s a keeper. Just like her older sibling the Dorchester across the road (whose facilities you can fully exploit), you get the sense that 45 will be around for a very long time. When even iPads are techno-history and retro hand-operated curtains are back in vogue, she’ll still have those gracious view-blessed rooms and a twinkle in her eye. London may no longer be home, but thanks to our fling with 45 Park Lane she’s still the perfect place for an away game.  

 

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Reviews of 45 Park Lane from Smith members

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