Notting Hill was on the map long before Hugh Grant and Julia Roberts graced its streets in the eponymous film. With so many things to see and do in this leafy, arty neighbourhood – not least the world-famous carnival – here’s our guide to the best hotels to stay in.
The west London neighbourhood of Notting Hill has a rich cultural history that’s celebrated in style at the colourful carnival every August. But you don’t have to wait until summer to enjoy the area. By staying at one of these hotels, you’ll have the likes of Portobello Road on your doorstep. With more than 1,000 traders selling collectables and vintage bric-a-brac, here’s your chance to browse the world’s largest antiques market. And if it’s food, drink or shopping you’re after, some of the best in the capital are here too.
The Laslett epitomises the multicultural aspect of Notting Hill. Named after Rhaune Laslett, community activist and founder of the Notting Hill festival – which then evolved into the carnival – it has social spaces to show off local artists’ work. Meanwhile the Henderson Bar is named after Trinidadian musician Russell Henderson, who was invited by Laslett to perform with his steel band at the 1966 carnival. The hotel is conveniently located near Notting Hill Gate station with the market, record shops and restaurants all on its doorstep.
A favoured bolthole of the rich and famous, the Portobello has some stories to tell, including one in particular that involves a supermodel, an actor and a bathtub full of champagne. The decor matches the building’s rich and varied history with individually designed rooms; some are done up in a boudoir style, others have a distinctive Mexican influence. Don’t miss their excellent breakfast, and be sure to swing by the honesty bar to make yourself a perfect G&T. Just a short wander from Portobello Market and many restaurants (might we recommend Gold?), this London institution is most definitely worth a stay.
Sitting along one of London’s prettiest streets, the Grade II-listed Abbey Court is a boutique hotel that will appeal to lovers of all things vintage. Each individually designed room looks as though it’s been furnished with antiques found at nearby Portobello Road Market, with cane furniture, carved four-poster beds and floral curtains. All have sleek Italian Carrara marble ensuites with bathtub and shower. The nostalgic vibe continues in the conservatory, where guests can take breakfast before heading out to find some long-forgotten treasures of their own.
On the corner of Ladbroke Grove and Chesterton Road, the polished Portobello House sits bang in the middle of the action. The perfect spot for couples looking for a romantic getaway, it has light-filled rooms that are whimsical and contemporary, with decor accents from Laura Ashley. Don’t miss the Sunday roast, and the hotel bar – great for people watching – serves Spanish tapas. They also host gin-tasting masterclasses and live music at weekends, all amid a modern English setting.
This quirky B&B offers something a bit different: from the beautifully decorated period rooms to the daily breakfast in bed service, there are lots of thoughtful touches. Each room is ensuite and there’s a shared kitchen should guests wish to cook for themselves. Conveniently located close to Portobello Road Market, it’s a bohemian bolthole offering an authentic west London experience.