Art & Design
Whether you stay overnight or just pop in for a drink and a bite to eat, it's worth having a little wander around the hotel's ground floor to look at the art that's on display, like the wall of mechanical pixels in the elevator lobby. When we arrived, we circled the building looking for the window featuring the South Place Hotel Art Prize. It's not there yet, but that's a good thing: winner Zemer Peled, a graduate of the Royal College of Art, will be creating her ceramic sculpture on site this month. This should be happening right now, so head over if you want to catch it live.
Each of the 80 bedrooms also has individually selected artwork above the bed. The overall design is by Conran, with a neutral scheme and pops of color that vary by floor. The benefit of the hotel being a new-build is easily seen in the rooms, which are spacious for London. Entry-level Dominion rooms are on the top floor, with mansard ceilings and queen-sized beds. South Place rooms have king-size beds and are on lower floors.
Ultra-sleek B&O flatscreen TVs are in every room set in a wall with those champagne-colored silk panels we referred to last week, it looks very swank. Touch panels next to the bed and around the room allow you to adjust blinds and lighting, including a partner-friendly night light to guide you to the bathroom.
Bathrooms feature either rain showers or a shower-tub combo in the rooms, with a separate rain shower and bathtub from the large, open-plan Studio Rooms. The dark grey and white marble used throughout is quite sexy. The hotel is the first to offer toiletries by British perfumer James Heeley.
We also saw the top-end Suite 610, which can be turned into a three-bedroom apartment by closing off an entire section of the floor. It featured a big open-plan living and dining room, powder room and butler's pantry, with a short hallway connecting it to a master bedroom with giant open-plan bathroom and seriously luxe bathtub. The suite is tricked out with the latest gadgets by B&O, including surround sound and multiple TVs.
Eat, Drink & Socialize
Aside from the lobby, which is tucked away behind the hotel entrance on a side street, the entire ground floor is taken up by 3 South Place, the all-day British restaurant and lounge. With a 24-hour license, you can easily flow from an after-work drink to dinner to a nightcap while a DJ livens up the scene. Late-night comfort food is available as well.
Angler, the rooftop brasserie, will open later this month. We did have a chance to walk around the space, including the outdoor terrace - London has a dearth of places to hotel rooftop, so we’ll be heading back soon to try and get you the lowdown on this place. Chef Tony Fleming will focus on fresh seafood, which you can sample inside or outdoors, with a more informal menu selection also available on the terrace.
WiFi is blessedly free (would we be jinxing it if we'd say that we've used WiFi and free more often in the same sentence recently?).As a guest, you also have access to residents' lounge "Le Chiffre", with various seating areas, books, board games, and a separate room with a pool table. Twister we did not spot, but there'd be plenty of space for it.
On the same floor as the residents' lounge are a number of meeting rooms, a small but expensively equipped gym with luxurious changing facilities (experience showers, sauna, steam room, you name it), and to top it all off, a hidden garden atrium bar.
South Place is only one of a number of hotels slated for a fall opening based on our London Hotels to Watch List – we’ll have more on the city’s latest happenings soon.
Dominion rooms can be had for an opening rate of £176 ($282) on a no-change/no-cancellation basis for a weekend night this month, excluding taxes & fees.
[Images: HotelChatter/South Place Hotel]