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Short stay: The Cavendish, Mayfair, London, UK

Those of you with good memories may recall that I reviewed The Cavendish on a previous visit back in 2016. Located in the heart of prestigious Mayfair and Piccadilly, the hotel was just as good as I remembered: an inviting place to stay in the capital, and suitable for both business and leisure travellers alike. Shoppers will love the proximity of the likes of Fortnum and Mason on the doorstep and a multitude of upscale retailers within easy walking distance. The welcome Check-in was quick and painless; efficient and welcoming. If there’s one thing I hate about check-in, especially when I’m travelling on business, it’s a load of unnecessary form-filling and delays. There was none of that – I was served immediately and promptly able to make my way to my room. Bravo! The room Like last time, I was in an Executive Room but, for some reason, this one felt a little more spacious than the last. This was room 1411 on the 14th (and uppermost) floor. Neutral tones meant the room would appeal to most guests and, in addition to a very comfortable bed, there was the opportunity to relax in a chaise longue by the window… …and, for those who sadly didn’t have time for that, a desk at which I could work! The room also came equipped with a Nespresso machine, Samsung TV and Bose docking station, and free WiFi is available throughout the hotel. There wasn’t so much of a view to speak of when I arrived as it had already gone dark, but you could still make out the city skyline, including the London Eye and the uppermost tip of The Shard. Come sunrise, the view could be appreciated that little bit more, and a great view it was too! The bathroom The bathroom was of ample size, with a separate bath and shower. As per my last visit, Noir Collection toiletries (available from The White Company) were provided. Also supplied – although I tend not to use these things on short stays – were fluffy gowns and slippers. Finally in the bathroom there was a card from the housekeeping team, outlining all the items that could be requested and provided without charge if required – everything from shaving kits to shoehorns. The facilities I dined at the Petrichor Restaurant on my last visit and again on this one. It offers diners a modern European style menu featuring traditional British favourites complemented by more contemporary dishes to tempt any palate. My starter was a smoked salmon roulade with cream cheese, chives, beetroot, avocado, salmon caviar, radish and sesame seeds which was full of flavour. This was followed by roasted halibut and langoustine with haricot beans, chorizo, olive oil, spinach and seafood sauce. This was the stand-out dish for me, with the fish perfectly cooked and still retaining plenty of moisture (halibut can have a tendency to dry out quickly upon cooking). I rounded the dinner off with a Bramley apple and cinnamon crumble with vanilla ice cream, but other options included a dark chocolate mousse with a pear sorbet, or caramelised banana with peanut ice cream and yuzu gel. Guests can retire to the lounge after dinner should they wish. The same restaurant is used for breakfast each morning. It’s a buffet style breakfast with plenty of options including fresh fruit… …pastries and your usual cooked options. Lastly, I’d like to comment on the convenience of the location of the hotel. With both Green Park and Piccadilly Underground stations are both nearby, it was easy to get about. As mentioned, I was attending World Travel Market at Excel – from the hotel, it is easy to walk to Green Park Station and from there take the DLR all the way to Canning Town and continue your onward journey from there. On my return journey on one occasion, I wasn’t paying attention and missed my stop – it was rather fortuitous, however, as I knew of the ‘Beyond the Deepening Shadow: The Tower Remembers’ installation that was taking place at the Tower of London to commemorate 100 years since the end of World War I, and chose to get off at Tower Hill station to see that. It was quite a moving spectacle, with the Tower lit up with the light of 10,000 flaming torches to remind the world of the brave who lost their lives in the War. My picture really doesn’t do it justice. Watch the video to gain a better insight:
YouTube video
Other nice touches There were a number of little extras in my room which were very much appreciated, including some nougat and a small gift. Next to the bed was some sleep spray – a nice touch although I rarely have any trouble getting off to sleep any time, let alone in such a comfortable bed. There was also plenty of in-room reading material, including the likes of TimeOut and Red magazine. Finally, during my visit, I called reception and asked if I could kindly get a document printed that I needed for a talk I was giving at World Travel Market the next day. Within 25 minutes of emailing that document, it was being pushed under my door. There’s service for you! Cost Executive rooms start from £376 midweek and from £305 at weekends. Alternatively, upgrade to a Junior Suite which starts from £469 midweek and from £413 at weekends. The best bit Location, location, location. The final verdict The hotel has many things to commend itself – this is a very comfortable hotel (worthy of five stars in my book) run by very welcoming and attentive staff, but perhaps its overriding attribute is its excellent location. Disclosure: Our stay was courtesy of The Cavendish.

Paul Johnson

Paul Johnson is Editor of A Luxury Travel Blog and has worked in the travel industry for more than 30 years. He is Winner of the Innovations in Travel ‘Best Travel Influencer’ Award from WIRED magazine. In addition to other awards, the blog has also been voted “one of the world’s best travel blogs” and “best for luxury” by The Telegraph.

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  1. I agree with you that The Cavendish has an enviable location. When I have to visit I often try to opt for Mayfair, it just seems a little more refined and serene than so much of London.

    1. Yes, I think it’s hard to find a better location. Everything is so central. Whether you are there for business or pleasure, the hotel puts you in a good position whatever you may have planned.

  2. Pleased to see that the menu is featuring traditional British favourites and from the pictures they are perfectly presented too.

    Although British Food was probably in the beige doldrums for a few centuries, British cuisine seems to fighting back with a vengeance.

    Last week I sat down to a menu offering duck, wood pigeon, lamb, rabbit, sea bream and beef, that would have kept Henry Vlll happy for a few courses. Though he may have complained that there was no swan on offer.

    1. Ha! Yes, no swan sorry!! But you’re right, British cuisine has long been ridiculed by our European counterparts, and perhaps deservedly so in the past. But nowadays, food in London and further afield is much higher quality than it ever used to be. And that’s been the case for some time now…

  3. I remember a journalist asking Mick Fleetwood of Fleetwood Mac whether he planned to keep on touring with the band. He replied, “I still get excited by the all the little bottles in hotel bathrooms so I’ll keep going.”

    At the time I thought it was a bizarre answer. As time passes I’m developing an odd fascination with collecting hotel toiletries. As a chronic insomniac I’m really impressed by the hotel “Sleep Spray.”

    1. I think that’s something we’ll see change in the coming years. Awareness about plastic has been heightened by David Attenborough’s Blue Planet series. Hotels such as SALT of Palmar in Mauritius, destinations such as Santa Cruz County in California, and Portuguese airline Hi Fly, are all leading the way towards going plastic free. I don’t suppose it will happen overnight but I think it’s an area where we might see a gradual change.

    2. Totally agree that long term plastic has to go. But those huge plastic bottles of liquid soap or shampoo screwed to the wall ain’t the answer either. How unhygienic are they? Once I’ve stayed in a place with those I won’t stay there again. Hate them.

    3. I think we really are onto “First World Problems” here but I’m going to join in anyway.

      These toiletries are a great opportunity for the cosmetics companies to promote their brands.

      Recently I travelled in the Middle East and found Amouage toiletries in my bathroom. I’d never heard of the brand and have since found out that it is far too expensive for the likes of me. Having those little bottles there raised their profile. So there are business reasons behind all of this.

    4. Good point, Julie. You would think that there would be some merit in cosmetics companies paying hotels and hotel chains so that their product was the one that appeared in guests’ bathrooms – however, I’m pretty sure the exchange of money moves in the opposite direction! Anyone happen to know more about this?

  4. I think if I had a city view like that I’d be impressed even if it was dark. London has a very impressive skyline, I often think it’s better after sunset.

  5. Competition amongst London’s many hotels is now so intense that it just keeps on driving standards ever upwards. From this review it looks as if the classy Cavendish is right up there jostling for position amongst the very best of them.

  6. I personally like the location of The Cavendish since there are a lot of places that I can visit within the area. The interior of the hotel is also fascinating. Furnitures are very simple yet elegant. The food is delectable and the accomodation is a 5 out of 5. I enjoyed my stay there three years ago and I will absolutely be back after a year or two.

  7. I’m a fan of anywhere with a chaise longue. I would spend hours on it, looking out of the window and watching the world go by. They remind me of a bygone world where ladies could spend their days reclining. Sometimes I think that I was born into the wrong era!

  8. For me, the amenities, facilities etc are all important but it’s the service that counts. This hotel has amazing service and for that’s what counts. I’ve stayed in some supposedly five star hotels, but the service has been appalling, whereas The Cavendish is top notch.

  9. Recent stay at The Cavendish was superb! Staff are friendly courteous and sublimely professional, a wonderful hotel in a great location, highly recommended!

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