If you’re looking for a true London experience, it doesn’t get more authentic than a stay in Soho, the city’s thriving centre for arts, culture, shopping and food. It manages to remain urban and gritty while also being home to some of the most upmarket hotels in the capital. On your next visit, book into one of these boutique properties in the heart and soul of the neighbourhood – unique, characterful and brimming with style.
Solo travellers often have to pay more for a double room or squeeze into a dorm with strangers. However, Mimi’s offers single rooms at reasonable rates in the heart of Soho. While the velvet curtains and wood panelling make the place feel like a private member’s club, the friendly staff will make you feel instantly at home. However long you’re staying, make sure you head down to Henson’s – a cosy, low-lit bar offering craft cocktails.
Once home to an 18th-century writer, the eponymous Hazlitt’s Hotel is something of a Soho institution. Once you step inside, you’d never guess the hotel was right in the middle of the city. The library and bedrooms are truly peaceful, and modern minimalism is waived in favour of old-fashioned charm. Snuggle up in front of the drawing room fire with the resident cat, or explore the extensive collection of signed first editions in the library with a drink from the honesty bar in hand. Each of the bedrooms has been uniquely decorated, with some featuring a sumptuous four-poster bed, velvet armchairs and a roll-top bath. It’s a perfect spot for a winter stay.
Since Soho is home to some of the best cinemas and theatres in the city, it’s only fitting that the Soho Hotel should have its own screening rooms and film club. The country-chic rooms – kitsch fabrics in bold colours and plenty of natural light – come in a good range of sizes, and the lounge bar downstairs has an excellent menu of devilishly delicious cocktails and a great selection of vegan and vegetarian food.
Shearling throws, mahogany beds and a neutral colour scheme all give the Nadler Soho a real city-slicker vibe without breaking the bank. Rooms range from singles to suites, and each comes with its own kitchenette, which is ideal if you’re looking to cut down costs. If you’re up and out early, the hotel team will put together a packed breakfast for you, but it’s also worth setting a morning aside to relax over a leisurely brunch at neighbouring Scarlett Green.
Part of the Soho House Group, Kettner’s is a cool and quirky hotel, but welcoming enough to feel like the apartment of an uber-fashionable friend. From the plush velvet furnishings to the clashing prints and perfectly positioned table lamps, it’s the kind of style you can’t quite put your finger on but wish you could copy. If you book into a medium room or a suite, you’ll be rewarded with ample space and a roll-top bathtub.
The London EDITION sits just barely outside Soho (in neighbouring Fitzrovia), but once inside you’ll be hard-pressed to find a reason to leave the ground floor. It’s home to one of London’s most impressive lobby bars and an award-winning restaurant (Jason Atherton’s Berners Tavern), with everything you need for a decadent night of wining and dining. Rooms are finished with sleek furniture and smooth colours, though the stucco ceilings, large sash windows and grand staircase reveal glimpses of the building’s 19th-century glamour. The crowd that gathers here is effortlessly stylish, and it’s a perfect midtown spot for exploring the heart of the city.