From an opulent rock’n’roll crashpad in Soho to an immersive lakeside art extravaganza in Somerset, here are six of April’s most exciting new places to stay.
Chateau Denmark, London
With no-holds-barred design, a rock’n’roll vibe and a eyewatering price tag to match, the 55-room Chateau Denmark in the heart of storied Denmark Street brings fresh verve to Soho. Unashamedly OTT, catwalk-ready personal butlers wear sharp-shouldered violet suits and Taylor Howes’ interiors – spanning punk rock, vintage gothic and modern psychedelia in style – are a riot. Spread across 16 buildings, about half of the rooms are open thus far; some go heavy on black and burgundy, with neon signs, oxblood Rorschach-style wallpaper, more fringing than you’d find backstage at a burlesque show, Void Acoustics speakers, rolltop tubs and onyx-tiled bathrooms. Meanwhile, others are all Sex Pistols-inspired tartan blinds, graffiti and gold trim. It’s a place to embrace louche, sling on a purple and piped-gold dressing gown, get the butler to shake up a martini from the extensive in-room bar, and have a DIY Tin Pan Alley party, as Bowie and Hendrix did in days gone by. Creative types can wander down to Hank’s for a guitar strum, and a bar, basement club and wellness area will arrive soon. The Chateau also forms part of the new Outernet District, which is set to bring a recording studio, live music spaces, and immersive digital wizardry to the surrounding area.
From £510, room-only; chateaudenmark.com
The Princess Royal, Notting Hill
Delivering hedonism in a more clean-cut style is the Princess Royal, a restored Victorian pub in Notting Hill, with four jauntily decorated bedrooms tucked on its upper level. Interiors guru Georgie Pearman has clearly poured plenty of love into the latest addition to the Cubitt House portfolio; behind a forest green frontage and a hurrah of mint humbug-striped awnings sits original mosaic work, lashings of timber, floral, Victorian-era, stained-glass windows sourced from reclamation yards and an attractive horseshoe-shaped bar. A grown-up hangout which feels young at heart, its greenhouse-style conservatory and olive-tree-filled courtyard are set to be the place for summer cocktails and Ben Tish’s smarter-than-your-average Mediterranean plates (think gooey three-cheese pizzette fritta with spring truffle, aubergine parmigiana, and lemon curd doughnuts dipped in saffron custard). Upstairs, bedrooms with crimson and pine green pops give a festive feel, which matches the pub’s lively atmosphere – where the party continues until closing time. Roberts radios, chunky woven carpet underfoot, fringed curtains, floral teacups and homemade amaretti biscuits ramp up bedrooms’ refinement levels, and the ritziest of the lot, Diana, has a bathtub lined with One Hundred Acre toiletries and a selection of relaxing Minai bath fizzers.
From £250, room-only; cubitthouse.co.uk/the-princess-royal
Light at Marston Park, Somerset
After a hit run last summer with the launch of the spaceship-style Futuro House accommodation, and pop-up Pikes Ibiza-style glamping weekenders, the creative team at Marston Park have gone one step further this summer with around 30 luxed-up lakeside bell tents and canvas suites sprinkled among Brunce Munro’s arresting “Light” installation. Consisting of flurries of spherical glass lights on fibre glass stems, which bloom in a rainbow glow after dark, not only is it a world-first experience to get truly immersed in Monroe’s work, as each tent has a small “garden” of its own psychedelic bulbs, but, set a 10-minute drive from Frome in the Somerset countryside, Marston Park is considerably closer-to-home than his other installations currently lighting up Uluru and California. A glampsite with the feel of a deconstructed hotel, plush tents – given a bohemian slant with upcycled school desks, robust-framed beds, rope-hung collections of vintage lampshades, artists’ easels and wood burners – sit at the edge of a vast ornamental Victorian lake, ringed by pretty ash woodland thick with chirruping birdsong. The boutique vibe is underlined by hot showers, Bramley products, flushing loos, and a roster of festival-feel activities: forest school for kids, mindfulness sessions in a glade, and a dinky, cold-water swimming pool and wood-fired hot tub. At the waterside dining tent, local blues guitarists do acoustic sets, and excellent wood-fired pizzas and Caprese salads heaped with site-picked wild garlic pesto are served for lunch and supper. If you’re staying a few days, it’s worth switching the simple on-site breakfast for something fancier in town under your own steam. After experiencing artistic immersion and creative spark, city-tired minds will leave utterly revived.
From £120, open 29 April-30 October 2022; marstonpark.co.uk/luxury-bell-tents
The New Inn, Tresco, Isles of Scilly
Home to unspoilt beaches and aquamarine waters, it’s no wonder that the subtropical Scilly Isles have been nicknamed the “Cornish Caribbean”. Sitting off the Cornish coast, family-owned Tresco Island is home to the revamped, much-loved The New Inn. Sixteen wild-luxe bedrooms have been smartened up with sleek, plum-coloured furnishing, turquoise tongue-and-groove panels, Alfred Newell bedside tables and Fermoie striped blinds. Most have countryside or sea views and jazzy walk-in showers with REN toiletries, while one particularly ship-shape suite houses a boat-shaped bathtub. Locals’ favourite The Driftwood Bar sports a familiar strewn-with-marine-curio look, while The Pavilion dining area is the spot for cosy pub grub suppers – think burgers, fish and chips, lobster with chilli-herb butter – by a roaring log fire. Outside there’s cooked-over-coals suppers at new terrace restaurant the Ox Grill, which sits alongside the popular beer garden. As well as an indoor and outdoor pool and tennis courts, all guests get free entry to the bloom-filled Abbey Garden, centred around the ruins of a Benedictine Abbey..
Rooms from £185, B&B; tresco.co.uk/staying/the-new-inn
The Dean Galway, Ireland
Hot on the heels of successful openings in Dublin and Cork, the 101-room Dean Galway has just thrown open its doors close to Eyre Square. Artwork, curated in partnership with Sync & Swim, shines a light on local artists and includes vivid pieces by the likes of Galway street artist Shane O’Malley and visual artist Lola Donoghue. Playful rooms have Art Deco touches and “design to make you smile”, with rich velvet furniture, floral headboards, Marshall amps, record players rainforest showers, and “Munchie Trays” stocked with Irish products including Skelligs chocolate. Rooftop restaurant Sophie’s has wraparound terraces with stunning views of Galway Bay, and is set to be a summer hotspot for wood-fired pizzas and leisurely brunches. There’s also an outpost of chicken wings institution Elephant & Castle (which first opened in Dublin in 1989), ground floor DIME Coffee for a caffeine fix, Peg’s Bar for pints of Guinness and traditional Irish music will open soon, followed by POWER gym, a workout space partially inside a decommissioned railway tunnel, plus an inner courtyard with heated outdoor pool.
From £125, room-only; thedean.ie
Tŷ Hotel Milford Waterfront, Milford Haven, Wales
Adding extra pizzazz to the multi-million pound regeneration of Milford Waterfront in Pembrokeshire is the latest opening from Celtic Collection – the same people behind Cardiff’s Parkgate Hotel and Celtic Manor Resort in the Usk Valley. A 100-room affair with views across the marina and bedrooms in liquorice allsort monochrome and sunshine yellow will suit business bods and holidaymakers after a practical, comfortable place to slumber. Dulse restaurant, headed up by former Wales National Chef of the Year Simon Crockford, shows off the best local produce from above and below the water – think Tenby Gin and coriander-cured salmon, sweetcorn, samphire and Welsh feta risotto, and creme brûlée with Welsh cakes – and has showstopper views through floor-to-ceiling windows. Days can be spent exploring the marina, rambling along west Wales’ picturesque beaches, such as family-friendly shingly Dale beach or rugged Marloe Sands. Also worth a peek are a clutch of four Floatel Cabins, which offer dog-friendly glamping at the water’s edge, a stone’s skim from the main hotel.
Rooms from £86, B&B; ty-hotels.com/destinations/milford-waterfront
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