Fine and dandy: The Mayfair Townhouse hotel is open for business

Words by
Charlotte McManus

17th July 2021

With its decadent decor, Wildean heritage and well-crafted cocktails, the latest offering from Iconic Luxury Hotels is a stellar addition to W1J

Part of the spate of swish townhouse hotels springing up across the capital of late - think Soho House's Redchurch Townhouse and the new Beaverbrook Town House - The Mayfair Townhouse first opened its doors in December 2020, only to quickly shutter them again in the onset of the long winter lockdown. As the capital started to regain a sense normality in the spring of 2021, the boutique hotel tried its luck once more, and is fast becoming a go-to destination in the area. 

Tucked away on Mayfair's Half Moon Street, Iconic Luxury Hotels' fifth property is located alongside Piccadilly and a short walk from Green Park. Comprised of 15 Georgian townhouses - seven of which are listed buildings - The Mayfair Townhouse features 172 rooms and suites in total. 

Drawing heavily from Half Moon Street's literary history - not only was it a key setting in Wilde's The Importance of Being Earnest and P.G. Wodehouse's Jeeves and Wooster stories, but it was also famously home to all manner of writers, poets and creatives from the 1700s through to the 20th century - the hotel is kitted out in true dandy style.

Plush carpets and velvet drapes create an appropriately decadent feel, complemented by marble fixtures and gilt detailing. Additionally, curios, objet d'art and eclectic artwork abound throughout, as curated by art specialist Minda Dowling, many of which reveal hidden tales when guests scan their QR codes. 

We check in on a wet, muggy summer's day, hurrying in from the street to discover welcome respite in the cool, perfumed lobby. From the get-go, our stay is replete with charmingly thoughtful touches. In the rooms, a prettily branded portable charging point keeps guests connected on the go, while golf umbrellas stave off the worst of unseasonable drizzle. Our Classic Room (from £312 per night) features a supremely comfortable double bed and a complimentary minibar (joy of joys), plus a swish marble-detailed en-suite with tub, steam shower and Noble Isle toiletries. Come nightfall, turndown service sees a complimentary copy of The Importance of Being Earnest left next to our bed, while hand-written “sweet dreams” missives appear on the mirror. 

 

Fine and dandy: The Mayfair Townhouse hotel is open for business

Downstairs, the buzzy yet intimate Dandy Bar is an excellent place to people-watch, and is as popular with outside visitors as it is guests. Our bar manager comes armed with an encyclopaedic knowledge of cocktails and is happy to provide tips on food pairings too. During our stay, the bar is offering a limited-edition menu crafted in collaboration with Acqua di Parma - the “first partnership of many”, we are told - featuring fragrant cocktails influenced by Italian fragrances. For the abstemious, each comes with its own non-alcoholic version. My favourite is the Capri, made with a 10-year-old Glenmorangie with blood orange liquor, syrup and watermelon soda, though my other half prefers the sweeter Amalfi, with Eminente rum, coffee oil and fig. A couple of those, plus a glass or two from the well-stocked wine list, is more than enough to start the night off with a bang. 

Wisely, the bar offers a robust food menu to help mop up its tipples. We start with light bites of arancini and charred padron peppers, before segueing into a succulent lobster curry and a 10oz, dry-aged, rib eye steak. Dishes aren't executed with quite as much flair as the cocktails, but go down a treat nonetheless.

With just enough room to squeeze in a wickedly creamy tiramisu and a selection of British cheeses, all that's left to do is toddle off to bed. 

Fine and dandy: The Mayfair Townhouse hotel is open for business

Wisely, the bar offers a robust food menu to help mop up its tipples. We start with light bites of arancini and charred padron peppers, before segueing into a succulent lobster curry and a 10oz, dry-aged, rib eye steak. Dishes aren't executed with quite as much flair as the cocktails, but go down a treat nonetheless.

With just enough room to squeeze in a wickedly creamy tiramisu and a selection of British cheeses, we don't quite manage to hit the town in true Wildean style as originally planned, but we do enjoy a good night's sleep. 

From £252 per night, themayfairtownhouse.com