Hotels continue to lure diners in with beautiful interiors and equally awe-inspiring menus.
In Marylebone, the five-star Landmark London hotel has recently undergone a major £1.3m refurbishment which included a new addition to its already stellar drinking and dining proposition. The eight-storey-high glass atrium has been at the centre of the hotel since its opening and is where guests will find the brand-new luxury Champagne Bar. Ascend to the first floor to find the stunning destination bar with its foliage-lined glasshouse and plush sofas or armchairs spanning the terrace.
Choose from a varied range of Champagnes best enjoyed alongside seafood-centric small plates, including scallop ceviche or Brixham white crab served on a toasted crumpet with avocado and tomato. There is a choice of caviar and blinis too, as well as desserts and an impressive seafood-inspired afternoon tea (Sat-Sun, 1pm-5pm). Whether it’s an elevated lunch with friends in the sunshine, or a romantic dinner for two beneath the starry sky, visible through the glass atrium ceiling, this will be a standout experience from the moment you enter the building.
Turn back time at Claridge's
Elsewhere, Claridge’s has turned back time as its restaurant has returned to what it was previously known as more than 20 years ago. Claridge’s Restaurant opened its great doors in June – it will be fully open in September, though – and is now operated in house by the hotel, with chef Coalin Finn heading up the kitchen.
Offering an all-day à la carte menu which consists of ‘classically inspired dishes, enhanced with modern twists’, buckwheat crumpets are laden with soubise cream and truffle; there’s a whole wild turbot grenobloise to share; and for dessert, you will have a hard time choosing between the likes of raspberry vacherin and a chocolate souffle tart with cocoa nib ice cream.
Take a moment to admire the surroundings: marble and brass fixtures create a sense of glamour, as do the specially selected artworks from Claridge’s extensive private collection. And the glossy tortoiseshell bar is the perfect Mayfair spot to order an aperitif or classic seasonal cocktail – we recommend the Peach Piquant mixed with tequila and mezcal.
In nearby St James’s, discover a slice of the Côte d’Azur at a new alfresco dining spot. La Terrasse at Sofitel London St James hotel is serving a Mediterranean experience every day until 30 September. ‘The idea behind La Terrasse by Sofitel is to offer a quiet little haven in central London, where guests can enjoy all the senses of the French Riviera with moments from some of London’s most iconic landmarks,’ says general manager Marie-Paule Nowlis. Stop here for a French wine, cooling cocktail or alfresco lunch of burrata, oysters or charcuterie and breathe in the scent of the citrus trees that line the terrace.
House of Ming
Located in St James’ Court, A Taj Hotel, the acclaimed Chinese restaurant House of Ming truly reflects the grandeur of its nearby neighbours in Buckingham Palace. Serving authentic Sichuan and Cantonese dishes with a side of eye-popping opulence, it has a tea menu fit for royalty.
At £6,000 a pot (that’s £1 million a kilo!) the Da Hong Pao tea is the most expensive in the world and is served by the in-house tea sommelier.
A dim sum menu includes edamame with smoked chilli oil or prawn truffle siu mai with pork, prawn, truffle oil and oyster mushroom. Larger plates feature classic dishes like mapo tofu or a whole Peking duck served at your table. Pair food with a Ming-inspired experiential cocktail or a bottle from the world-class wine list featuring small producers from around the world.
www.landmarklondon.co.uk; www.claridges.co.uk; www.sofitelstjames.com; www.houseofming.co.uk.