Hugging an upward curve of the River Thames, Hammersmith comes to life at night with dynamic theatrical productions and the steady thrum of live music. A stay in one of the chic hotels that dot the area will ensure you don’t miss out on all this West London district has to offer.
Much of the old Hammersmith Village was demolished in the 1930s, but in its place sprouted grand shopping centres, scenic riverside pubs and restaurants dishing up cuisine from around the world. Oh, and a crop of excellent hotels, covering everything from a converted 19th-century schoolhouse to a cutting-edge “boutique urban base”.
Heeton Concept Hotel – Luma Hammersmith
Courtesy of Heeton Concept Hotel – Luma Hammersmith / Hotels.com
Inspired by the mammoth Osram light-bulb factory that once dominated Hammersmith, this cutting-edge hotel aims to be as revolutionary now as that Victorian-era powerhouse was back in the 1880s. In fact, the owners of this property don’t even use the label ‘hotel’ – they prefer to describe it as a “boutique urban base”, which underlines their commitment to doing things differently; from anytime breakfast to a bend-over-backwards concierge service. A steampunk-inspired reception desk welcomes you to the 89-room concept hotel, Luma – just a short walk from Hammersmith station – and the light bulb motif is apparent until the very moment you rest your head on the pillow, which bears a map of London as if illuminated by electricity.
Occupying what used to be the BBC Kensington House Recording Studios, K West has music ingrained in its DNA. David Bowie, Bob Marley and Amy Winehouse all played here, and their records, books and paintings decorate the common areas and 219 rooms. The rock’n’roll vibe extends to the laid-back Studio Kitchen – try the new Retro Afternoon Tea, including a Jack Daniel’s-spiked prawn cocktail, mini sliders, yuzu lollipops and bubblegum macarons – but the K Spa is far more tranquil, with a sauna, sanarium, steam room, foot baths, hydrotherapy pool, plus London’s first ice-cold relaxation cabin, Snow Paradise.
Built from the crumbling remains of a classic cinema, this Grade II listed building retains its history with heaps of Art Deco-inspired decor. A contrast of metallic blacks, dark wood and shimmering golds characterise the place, with grand artistic features such as the twirling lobby lights and curved gilded levels of the Jin bar. Restaurant Shikumen serves up authentic Asian dishes, while fitness enthusiasts can keep in shape at the 24-hour gym. Upstairs, China-inspired rooms range from an intimate deluxe suite – complete with a bronze velvet armchair and plush king-size bed – to luxurious suites with endless city views through curved floor-to-ceiling windows.
A Victorian townhouse-turned-boutique hotel, The Rockwell boasts an interior drenched in floral patterns and soothing neutral tones. Situated in Central London, this luxurious lodging is just a short walk away from the V&A Museum. Its array of contemporary rooms carry universal appeal: from standards with warm royal-red chairs and minimal wooden furnishings, to deluxe doubles with acres of space and a king-size bed to sink into every night. If you like to dine al fresco, there’s a secluded garden at your disposal – or avoid the winter chill with a bloody mary and brunch inside the dark-violet restaurant–bar.
A fresh addition to the prestigious Autograph Collection,Hotel Xenia brings a distinguished English countryside vibe to the city. Forest-green blankets and studded headboards bookend the beds, while woodland creatures and winter berries adorn the cushions – a nod to the wilderness beyond the UK capital. L’Occitane toiletries can be found in all the rooms, but the five-star suite takes things up a notch with an espresso machine, a rotating TV and an all-important private balcony where you can admire the concrete jigsaw of architecture below. The hotel is just a stone’s throw from Hammersmith, where you can catch a live concert at the Eventim Apollo or indulge in Sunday lunch at one of the many gastropubs in the area.
An embodiment of minimalist city style, The Resident Kensington is located in a lively hub, just a few steps from countless old-school British pubs, parks and the renowned Troubadour coffee house, where live gigs regularly take place. The interior is stripped back, allowing for emphasis on practical necessities such as writing desks and expansive en-suite bathrooms. In the rooms, off-white walls and light-wood furniture are complemented by bold splashes of midnight blue and berry red, while plush mattresses ensure you get a deep and comfy night’s sleep. Self-catering is also an option for those looking to avoid Central London prices, with an in-room kitchen that has all the necessary equipment to rustle up a delicious dish.