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Discreet luxury (and ducks!) at The Stafford.

by Andrea on October 17, 2011

A Master Suite bedroom at The Stafford: a hotel which is discretion personified

Unlike hotels such as the Ritz or Savoy, which proudly proclaim their presence and quality to any passer-by, the Stafford Hotel hides discreetly in the back streets of St James’s, invisible from the main street.  That should tip you off that the hotel’s style is relatively understated; it’s not a hotel that makes a splash or that cares much for bling.

The luxuries of The Stafford are in a different class.  For a start, there’s space; the suite in the Mews (a newer block in contemporary style) that I stayed in was large and naturally lit by huge windows which gave onto the hotel’s quiet cobbled courtyard.  The floor plan was well designed to maximise privacy, with a lobby separating bedroom and living room and a dressing area off the bedroom, as well as a massive bathroom.

Check rates at The Stafford

A Classic King room at The Stafford

Furnishings in gold and beige were light and clean, with darker wood furniture in a more modern style.  The smooth running of the drawers and positive catches on the cabinet doors showed real attention to detail – neither too stiff nor too loose, but just right.  Care was also evident in the selection of hangers including both wooden and padded hangers, master switches for both rooms and nightlights for bedroom and bathroom.

Small touches such as books on the shelves – a fascinating mix of picture books (wildlife, landscape, gardens), political biographies, classics, and novels – and a Bose MP3 dock, as well as a bedside radio, made it possible to settle in very quickly.  It’s worth noting that soft drinks are also free.

Floris toiletries are a good choice – enough character for men and enough floral notes for women – and they come in big bottles.  The quick-filling bath is a nice touch – no waiting for a puny dribble of water when you need a soak; though I found the shower not quite powerful enough for my taste.

Check rates at The Stafford

The Courtyard at The Stafford gives you a feeling of seclusion and privacy despite the fact that you’re actually in the heart of central London

The suite was uncannily quiet for central London.  The only noise that made it through the double glazing was a single-wheeled suitcase click-clacking over the cobbles early in the morning; otherwise, not a dicky-bird.

Any quibbles?  Just very minor ones.  I slightly missed the lack of the normal ‘user manual’ for the room, though I was shown round most of the features when I checked in and none of the tech was difficult to use.  Perhaps the carpet was getting a little worn in places – but in truth, I had to look pretty hard to fault the place at all.

Most serious failing though, and nul points to the Stafford for this, there was no rubber duck in my bathroom! How a hotel reviewer can be expected to have a decent bath without the right company, I don’t know…apparently a new fleet of ducks were still winging their way in from the Far East while I was at the hotel, but we’ve since been sent a photo of the new arrivals!

Check rates at The Stafford

One of the recently-arrived rubber ducks at The Stafford (they’re so popular among guests who take them home that a new batch had to be flown in specially!)

The concierge desk at The Stafford are extremely on the ball.  On my way out, I asked for tube directions to Finchley Road.  Not only did I get these (without needing to look them up), but I was also shown “our little secret passageway to Green Park” as the scenic route to the tube station – another benefit of the Stafford’s discreet concealed location.

The hotel also has an atmospheric American Bar and a 350 year old wine cellar to enjoy, but those are stories for another day…

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Photo credits: Stafford Hotel (Kempinski).

Disclosure: Andrea was a guest of The Stafford.

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New Review of The Stafford London Posted | London Hotel News | Official daily news on London hotels |
October 25, 2011 at 6:41 am

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