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Abu Dhabi, UAESaturday 22 September 2018

Hotel Insider: Grosvenor House Suites by Jumeirah Living, London

This London outpost of Dubai's luxury hotel brand offers private and perfectly placed apartment style rooms in London, in a historic building next to Hyde Park

Grosvenor House Suites by Jumeirah Living on London's Park Lane. Jumeirah
Grosvenor House Suites by Jumeirah Living on London's Park Lane. Jumeirah

The welcome

I’ve booked a transfer from Heathrow’s Terminal 4, so a driver is waiting at arrivals with a sign with my name on it. Within five minutes, we’re on the road into London in a new BMW 7 Series, which provides a smooth 30-minute cocoon before arriving at the hotel in London’s Mayfair. Driving through part of Hyde Park on the way to the hotel is a nice touch. The hotel has a small, unassuming lobby, and some guests have trouble finding it, confusing it with the J W Marriott Grosvenor House Hotel next door. Once past the ground-floor lobby, a lift takes you to reception on the second floor, a pleasant space next to a lounge and atrium. The sense of security and anonymity is welcome.

The second floor reception area at Grosvenor House Suites by Jumeirah Living. Jumeirah
The second floor reception area at Grosvenor House Suites by Jumeirah Living. Jumeirah

The neighbourhood

The hotel is on Park Lane, at the eastern end of Hyde Park, surrounded by Mayfair’s historic mansions, luxury shopping and other high-end hotels. It’s about a five-minute walk to Oxford Street. Hyde Park is accessed within seconds via a nearby underpass.

View from a suite at Grosvenor House Suites by Jumeirah Living. Jumeirah
View from a suite at Grosvenor House Suites by Jumeirah Living. Jumeirah

The scene

This 6-year-old hotel is inside a much older building which was designed by Edwin Lutyens and finished in 1918. It served as the London home of the Dukes of Westminster and Viscount Leverhulme before being converted into apartments. In 2011, it underwent a £75 million (Dh376.7m) conversion, before opening under Jumeirah in 2012. While the historic facade and exterior windows have been maintained, the interior is thoroughly modern. The atmosphere is quiet and relaxed. The hotel is filled predominantly with wealthy GCC residents on leisure breaks, on trips from one night to several months.

The room

The living area in the City Suite. Jumeirah
The living area in the City Suite. Jumeirah

Rooms at this 130-suite hotel range from studios to five-bedroom penthouses. All have full kitchen, dining and laundry facilities. The smallest rooms are about 44 square metres, and the largest, the Grosvenor Penthouse, is 448 square metres. I’ve been upgraded to a City Suite, which is 175 square metres and has a spectacular view from the living room’s many windows, over Mayfair’s historic rooftops to the City of London and beyond. The bedrooms are snug and luxuriously finished, with designer bathrooms and top-quality double glazing.

A bedroom in the City Suite. Jumeirah
A bedroom in the City Suite. Jumeirah

The service

Staff are obliging and calls to maintenance to get the hot water working in the bath and to be shown how to use the room’s gas fire are responded to with lightning speed. Housekeeping staff are sweet and unobtrusive; restaurant staff are very pleasant and reasonably efficient, though a bit more speed would have been appreciated; 24-hour room service is available.

The food

The hotel only has one restaurant, the Atrium, which serves as an all-day-dining and lounge venue.

The Atrium dining area. Jumeirah
The Atrium dining area. Jumeirah

The menu is varied and includes sandwiches, salads, pasta, pizza, fish and chips, steaks and Indian food. The rib-eye steak sandwich (£21 [Dh105]) is delicious and comes with a salad and chips. The breakfast menu is also extremely extensive, with a full English breakfast (including continental items) costing £36 (Dh181). The coffee is good.

Loved

The sense of privacy, the view from my room and being able to access Hyde Park within minutes. The open Wi-Fi network is quick to get onto, and all devices stay connected throughout the building.

Hated

Though my bedroom is equipped with blackout blinds, too much light comes through the glass doors of the bathroom, and there is a glowing smoke alarm in one of the windowsills. The TV isn’t as simple to operate as it should be. There’s no spa or pool, though guests can use both at the Jumeirah Carlton Tower hotel in Knightsbridge.

The verdict

A slick, luxurious and comfortable base in London in a great location.

The bottom line

Studio suites at Grosvenor House Suites by Jumeirah Living cost from £445 (Dh2,235) per night, including taxes.

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