Rocco Forte Brown’s Hotel
What We Love
- The impeccable service
- Indulging at the Champagne Afternoon Tea
- The black-and-white Terence Donovan photography in the Donovan Bar
- The location, only a short walk from the shops on Oxford Street
What To Know
- The restaurant can get busy; book in advance
- There's plenty of live music, from live jazz in the Donovan Bar from 9pm to midnight (Monday through Saturday) to the pianist in the English Tea Room
- READ MORE: How to see London for free
- Free WiFi
- Handicap Accessible
- Parking On Site
- Room Service
Made up of 11 townhouses in posh Mayfair, Brown’s Hotel is nothing short of a British institution. Opened in 1837, the hotel had a chic modern overhaul in 2005 when Sir Rocco Forte and the talented Olga Polizzi took the helm. Think plush carpets, neutral tones, enormous beds clad in white linens and marble bathrooms. Downstairs, the HIX restaurant dishes up delicious British cuisine amongst artwork from Bridget Riley and Tracey Emin. There’s a bijoux spa, and the Donovan Bar serves a mean cocktail. If you like your hotels with a hefty dose of history, then Brown’s is your place. Queen Victoria was a regular visitor, Rudyard Kipling wrote The Jungle Book in the tea room and it was here that Alexander Graham Bell made his first U.K. phone call. If only the walls could talk.
In the Area
The best of England’s high-fashion stores are at your doorstep, including Selfridges, Liberty and the Topshop flagship store at Oxford Circus. If the sun puts in an appearance, have lunch alfresco at Hyde Park, one of the city’s most picturesque green spaces. Expect to hear lively debates, rants and ramblings every Sunday at Speakers’ Corner in Hyde Park, where orators have taken to their soapboxes to celebrate freedom of speech since 1872 (heckling optional). For more park life, do a circuit of the Serpentine and admire the more than 4,000 trees, stop by the Diana Memorial Fountain and stroll down to Buckingham Palace to take a tour of the royal residence.
How to Get There
The hotel is very conveniently located, walking distance to many good restaurants and shopping. A short taxi ride to some great museums. The restaurant was excellent. We had a very nice afternoon tea and the bar was warm and welcoming. The concierge was very helpful with suggestions and restaurant reservations. A perk was the Bentley car service that drove us to nearby restaurants.
Come here for a relaxing cup of tea with delicious sandwiches, scones, and pastries. It’s a charmingly old-fashioned place, with friendly service and a good but quiet pianist. We especially enjoyed talking to Yonka (who makes her own special tea with rosebuds) about the history of the hotel, and Lorenzo.
This was a long awaited reunion for me and a dear American friend. We have kept in touch but not met for 35 years so it was a very special day. My husband and I wanted to give her a true London experience so Browns was the obvious choice. It has long been our favourite afternoon tea restaurant and they did not disappoint. The food was delicious with divine sandwiches and exquisite cakes. The menu has just been changed and the flavours are delivered with real thought and finesse.
The tea menu is extensive and Browns give you the opportunity to taste a few. Our 'tea sommelier' Yonka was fantastic. She kept us well fed and watered and was determined to make sure we had a great time. Service was wonderful, discreet, attentive and friendly. Yonka and Zoltan between them made the experience a delight. A great memory for old friends.
I have been several times over the past year for drinks and to dine and every time the service is suoerb, staff wonderful, drinks and food lovely. The new bar is stunning but the one steadfastly unchanging aspect of this hotel is the service from the staff. As you might expect from a hotel of this calibre service is faultless. Once I forgot to bring my reading glasses and within minutes was presented with a pair (new) from a member of the bar staff. Frankly, this hotel is a home from home, welcoming and friendly. If you are in London at all then pop in if only to have a drink at their bar. Just off Piccadilly, hidden gem.
I appreciated all the quaint aspects of my stay, and whilst this is my first time in the last 10 years of staying in a hotel other than the Berkeley, Connaught or Claridges, I don’t feel that I lost out.
Thank you all for the kind attention that I received.