Ham Yard Hotel, London, UK

A colourful country house in the middle of the city, Ham Yard Hotel is filled with quirky decor and unique artworks collected from across the world. Like a scrapbook brought to life, owners Tim and Kit Kemp realised their every whim and fancy furnishing Ham Yard Hotel, meaning an XXL slide-shaped, orange-juice maker, a bronze sculpture by Tony Cragg and hand-painted wallpaper were all deemed "necessities".

Amplifying Firmdale's staple mix of colour, texture, pattern and art, at the group's Piccadilly posting - despite it's touristy postcode - a sense of sophistication abounds.


At Ham Yard, no two rooms are the same. Choose from suites with Boffi kitchens to apartments (there are 24 in total) with roof gardens. We get the feeling that Kit loves a throw pillow - that and a statement headboard. Rooms are created to engulf the occupant, from high-framed beds to padded, linen walls and fluffy robes. The bathroom is stocked with rikrak (Kit's bath and beauty range) and the signature fragrance Gardenia Greenleaf has lasting appeal. Soak in the tub until you turn prune-like - a side effect of the Aqua TV docked at the foot of the bath, perhaps.

What's for breakfast?

Breakfast is one of the hotel's strongest meals. Choose from a continental buffet or go a la carte and opt for avocado on chia-seed sourdough or baked eggs.

How about lunch and dinner?

Dine at the bar and choose from a casual menu of melts on house-made rosemary focaccia and a selection of hearty small plates. The restaurant, meanwhile, plays a chicer, more conservative card with an offering of classic fish and meat dishes. In the summer, dine in the courtyard or venture across the way to Engawa (an independent sushi shop which sits within Ham Yard village). If Engawa's menu appeals but your bed beckons, order a deluxe bento box (the toro sushi and seabass sashimi are standouts) straight to your room.

Is there a bar?

Yes, and it's very popular with the after-work crowd so make sure you get there early. If the bar is in a state of gridlock, make use of your exclusive guest access to the rooftop garden (the bar here is not staffed so use the phone by the lift to place your drinks order). Two honesty bars located in the library and drawing room - both are also only accessible to hotel guests. Feeling VIP yet?


Bowling alley, cinema, Soholistic spa and gym with hypoxic chamber (used for altitude training). Spa treatments can also be arranged in-room.

Things you should know

If your leisure trip turns to business but you've left your devices at home, you can hire an iPad or laptop from reception. Return to fun and games and pre-book one, or maybe all four, of the bowling lanes at The Croc.

Within a short walk you'll find…

Picturehouse Central for a late night movie; Bao (a great stop off for Taiwanese street food); Theatreland and Soho's grid-worth of shops.