Surprisingly, many of London’s most esteemed hotels welcome children for family holidays. Just ask Mr & Mrs Smith who have recently launched Smith and Family, their website dedicated to luxurious, chic and family-friendly accommodations. Here are their picks for stylish hotels providing family friendly accommodation in their hometown of London for those traveling with kids.
Knightsbridge’s the Berkeley may be famous for its fine dining experiences – Marcus Wareing and Pierre Koffmann both have restaurants here – but there’s also plenty to please the little ones, including kids’ swimming times at the rooftop pool, a bespoke activity book featuring hotel-themed puzzles and plush Berkeley bears to snuggle up with at bedtime. With an all-day menu of comfort food classics like shepherd’s pie and paninis, the Caramel Room has plenty to satiate kid’s oft-pernickety palates, while the al fresco sun terrace delights all year round with activities such as winter cinema showings complemented by cocoa and cookies.
Steps from the banks of the Thames and smack-dab in the middle of central London, grand Victorian hotel the Corinthia has an enviable London location, but most importantly for parents, it’s suitable for all age groups from babes in arms to teens. Call up the babysitting service so you can duck into luxury spa brand Espa’s flagship location for a facial or a work-out with trainers, then take the kids for a dip at the indoor heated swimming pool (or just leave the kids behind for an indulgent paddle of your own during the adult-only swim time)…
The grand dame of London accommodation not only has art deco glamour to turn parents heads – afternoon tea in the gilded lobby is legendary – but some of the largest (and hence most family-friendly) rooms in Central London, ensuring there’s plenty of space for you and the brood to run riot. There are also kid-friendly touches aplenty, from bespoke welcome gifts such as activity books and small toys to comics delivered with your morning newspaper. There are plenty of kid-friendly food options too, from healthy snacks like fruit and yogurt to chicken skewers and salad on the menu.
[For more family travel tips on London with kids, see the suitcases&strollers story London Insider.]
The Connaught may be all English grandeur with its ornate Edwardian lobby and grand staircase, but it also knows how to make kids feel special with junior check-in – expect fruit skewers, dipping chocolate and smoothies – and kids’ bathrobes embroidered with your little ones’ name plus child-sized slippers and pint-sized umbrellas. Older ones can request Wii, Xbox or Playstation consoles while you nip down to the UK’s only Aman Spa, where signature experiences inspired by China, Thailand, India and the Americas await. Forget burgers and chicken nuggets: restaurant Espelette serves up gourmet offerings such as clear chicken soup with vegetables and macaroni.
If self-catering in style is your thing, then you'd be hard pressed to find a better place to stay than No 5 Maddox, a chic collection of hip and high-tech studios – think designer chairs and MP3 docking stations – that’s sure to win round the most irrepressible of teenagers, especially when they realise they have free rein of the hotel’s music and film libraries. Food-stocked kitchens and restaurant delivery encourage families to kick back, but if you want to up the culinary stakes – and abandon the apron – why not book a hotel chef via the concierge to cook you up a storm?
For other unique family-friendly accommodation in the British Isles, read the suitcases&strollers story Quirky Accommodation: The British Isles
To read more about Smith and Family read the suitcases&strollers story here