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What's Worth It: The Berkeley Hotel in London

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2011-01-25-theberkeley1.jpgThe Berkeley
KNIGHTSBRIDGE, LONDON

"London hip hotel with a modern twist in buzzy Knightsbridge. Coolest kid of the Maybourne Group trio. Unassuming from the outside, inside the Berkeley is super-stylish, exquisite and innovative. The lobby is intimate, strewn with gorgeous flowers and dotted with bright young things. The Blue Bar is a popular and exclusive celebrity hangout, where cocktails are made with the finest ingredients, and the rooftop pool is a top London Summer spot."

2011-01-25-theberkeley2.jpg- Trusted Friend: Bonnie Bidenfeld, Monaco & Zurich
(Date Experienced: September, 2010)

Great for
Injecting your London stay with sophisticated style and a great central base. Merges a cool, hip vibe with classic attention to detail -- without loosing sight of what a great, grown-up hotel should be.

With whom
Shopping trip with the girls, family stay or romantic weekend. Games consoles keep kids happy.

Memorable moment
Swimming in the rooftop pool -- in London! The experience seems very Miami but the view is quintessentially British.

Best time to go
Spring or summer when you can fully take advantage of the rooftop pool and the proximity to Hyde Park. Winter to cosy up in the rooftop winter cinema (until 31 January) which provides fluffy cushions, warm Mulberry blankets and furry hot water bottles as well as heating lamps and over-sized down feather jackets for warmth. How romantic!

Be aware
The Blue Bar is very popular and can get crowded.

Specifics

Room options
Interiors are designed by Helen Green amongst others, and mix pale blues, greys and champagnes. Rooms boast French wallpapers, with Italian marble bathrooms. All business facilities are provided, including video conferencing.

Service & vibe
Seamless service. Mature atmosphere with a hip-twist.

Food
Pret-a-Portea, the Berkeley's fashion-themed afternoon tea, is a must. Cakes, biscuits and pastries designed around the season's new collections -- too cute. Marcus Wareing at the Berkeley has a classic, tasty, two Michelin star menu in a deep purple dining room; Koffmann's by Pierre Koffmann is top notch French bistro fare. The Caramel Room offers delicious all day dining.

Price range
From £300

Experience it

To do & see
Knightsbridge is top for retail therapy, also close to the museums of South Kensington (Science, Natural History and V&A). Charming Motcomb, a street nearby, is good for a neighborhood stroll.

Sport & Activity
Hyde Park is pretty much across the road: horse riding, rowing, jogging, picnics...

Spa & Grooming
As well as the pool, the rooftop has a gym and lovely spa.

Local Insights

To Eat
Both of the hotel's restaurants: Marcus Wareing and Koffmann's -- are genuinely two of the top picks in the area. Other ideas in the area: Gastro-Pub The Pantechnicon (Motcomb St.) Indian at Amaya (Halkin Arcade), seasonal Italian at Oliveto on Elizabeth St.

To Buy
Knightsbridge and Sloane Street are full of designer shops and with Harrods & Harvey Nichols next door you have them all in one place.

Helpful Source
Their concierge, Alan Noone -- he is one of London's best!

Location & Reservations

Where
The Berkeley
Wilton Place
Knightsbridge, London
SW1X 7RL

Contacts
the-berkeley.co.uk
+44 (0)20 7235 6000
GM: Klaus Kabelitz
Head Concierge: Alan Noone