Paris may be the official City of Love, but our vote sits firmly with London and all its lovey-dovey hotels, perfect for a romantic rendezvous. Some come kitted out with free-standing outdoor tubs, some with personal butler service, whilst others even have their own grand piano so you can channel your own Pretty Woman moment. From five-star luxe in Mayfair to tiny boutique boltholes, here's our guide to romantic hotels in London.
Guide to romantic hotels in London
In this guide
Romantic hotels in London
- Shangri-La The Shard – Views for days
- The Hoxton – London's longest oyster list
- Artist Residence – A boutique bolthole
- The Boundary – East London style
- Treehouse Hotel – For releasing your inner child
- Hazlitt's – 18th-century charm
- Brown's Hotel – London's oldest hotel
- The Ritz – One of London's greatest
- Batty Langley's – A Georgian oasis
- The London Edition – Design-led, 19th-century paradise
- The Standard – Brutalist turned Seventies retro
- Sea Containers London – Freestanding tubs and sweeping river views
- Kettner's Townhouse – Art Nouveau romanticism
- The Franklin London – The epitome of luxury
- Claridge's – The dictionary definition of luxe
Romantic hotels in London
Views for days
We couldn't write a list of the most romantic hotels in London and not include Shangri-La. Forget about the rest of the world and sip on champagne with afternoon tea on floors 34-52 of Aqua Shard, where city views are unparalleled. Rooms are sophisticated and sleek, with floor-to-ceiling windows, huge beds with luxurious Frette bedding and, depending on what room you book, a plunge bathtub with even more sweeping city views. The hotel also has an Asian-themed cocktail bar, perfect for late-night drinks, and the city's highest swimming pool with an infinity edge that overlooks London's dramatic skyline.
London's longest oyster list
The Hoxton in Southwark is the hotel group's third London hotel, right at the heart of the city's action situated close to Tate Modern, Borough Market and the Southbank. The interiors are very much Miami-meets-New York, with a medley of potted plants, artworks, marble bar counters and pastel hues paired with exposed brickwork. At the rooftop Seabird restaurant, waiters dress in all white, and there's an impressive raw bar with London's longest oyster list for when you're hungry or fancy an aphrodisiac.
A boutique bolthole
It's all about contemporary playfulness at Artist Residence, a boutique bolthole located down a sleepy side street in Pimlico. It houses ten retro-inspired, nice-sized bedrooms, each with a unique style, vintage furniture, exposed brickwork and an overall shabby-chic feel. Each comes with a king-sized bed, limited edition artwork and luxurious rainfall showers. If you stay in The Loft room, you'll enjoy a 1930s bathtub in the walk-in bathroom that's big enough for you and one other. Fancy a nightcap? Shuffle down to the basement bar, a speakeasy-themed space ideal for late-night intimate conversations.
East London style
Boundary is a design-lovers paradise, located a stone's throw from Redchurch Street's independent boutiques and excellent restaurants (Smoking Goat is a must-visit). It was designed by Sir Terence and Vicky Conran, a husband and wife duo and influential British designers. 17 bedrooms are inspired by a different designer or movement of the 20th century, and each is kitted out with premium Aesop toiletries and a Conran sound system. Some rooms have bathrooms with mirrored walls, deep built-in plunge tubs and a separate walk-in rain shower. Enjoy fondue and champagne on the fairy-lit rooftop or sip on cocktails at street level.
For releasing your inner child
Thanks to the unattractive 1960s office block in which Treehouse Hotel is located, you'd have no idea it's one of London's most playful hotels. Inspired by the nostalgia associated with climbing a tree as a child, a lot of wood and long windows remind you you're partying up in the clouds. Rooms have vinyl players for spinning late-night slow jams, and black-steel windows give the space an industrial-chic feel. The Nest has two outdoor terraces for alfresco cocktails, whilst Mexican restaurant Madera is a celeb fav, serving zingy margaritas and Mex-inspired fare with a live DJ come night.
Hazlitt's is a Soho sanctuary with rooms titled after literary greats - now that's romantic. It's located inside four Georgian townhouses and is named after William Hazlitt, who once lived here. There are 30 bedrooms located up a creaky staircase that drip with character, think four-poster beds, vintage furniture and featured free-standing bathtubs. There's ample old-world charm here: Georgian oil paintings and a library stocked with first editions, including two signed first editions of Harry Potter.
London's oldest hotel
There's something uber romantic about Brown's Hotel being the oldest in London. It's got a client list of A-listers, royalty and celebs; Rudyard Kipling even wrote The Jungle Book here. It's got a rich wooden interior, antique artwork and multicoloured stained-glass windows. As for the rooms, expect green velvet armchairs, queen-sized beds, and bookcases filled with old-school novels. Treat yourself to a romantic meal at the Michelin-starred Charlie's, where traditional British fare comes with contemporary Italian twists.
One of London's greatest
The Ritz is one of London's most prestigious hotels, complete with impeccable service and sophisticated surroundings. It overlooks the leafy Green Park, right around the corner from the Royal Academy of Arts and bustling Soho, where some of the city's best restaurants reside. It oozes elegance, visible from the moment you walk through the door, with a timelessness about it, including a pianist in the renowned Long Gallery, where they serve their legendary afternoon tea. There are 136 rooms, including 23 signature suites, most decorated with pastel shades, antiques and thoughtful touches.
A Georgian oasis
Batty Langley's is a Georgian sanctuary located down a cobbled street in Spitalfields. It houses 29 rooms, all named after historical figures from the 18th century, with carved oak or Georgian four-poster beds, period fittings, restored vintage showers and iron roll-top baths. The hotel has plenty of cosy nooks for chilling in and a wood-adorned library with more than 3,500 books to flick through.
Design-led, 19th-century paradise
The London Edition is dripping with romanticism. It's home to the acclaimed Jason Atherton restaurant, which features a striking 19th-century-ceiling. There are minimalist chalet-inspired rooms and an overall design-led aesthetic, keeping everything trendy and fresh. It's just moments from Oxford Circus underground station, yet you probably wouldn't even notice, since it's disguised between the rest of the street's neoclassical architecture. The Punch Room is intimate and decorated in a 19th-century style and serves an extensive list of speciality punches.
Brutalist turned Seventies retro
Some of the rooms at the Standard in King's Cross have bathtubs outside on the terrace; now, if that doesn't scream romantic, then we don't know what does. Inside, there's no reminder that it's located in an old brutalist building; the decor pays homage to retro-style seventies design, with colourful artwork and kitsch bedrooms. Hop in the red elevator and get whisked up to the rooftop Decimo for a dreamy Mexican date night fuelled by Tommy's margaritas.
Freestanding tubs and sweeping river views
Aside from housing the best bar in the world, Lyaness, as awarded on more than one occasion, Sea Container also boasts some of the best views of the Thames and beyond from many of its cabin-inspired rooms (around a third, to be precise). The Riverview Balcony suites are the most impressive of the bunch, complete with a freestanding tub and a large terrace overlooking the river.
Art Nouveau romanticism
Opt for the Jacobean Suite at Kettner’s Townhouse in Soho if you're after Art Nouveau vibes and total luxury. It was once a renowned French restaurant and champagne bar that was the scene of much debaucherous behaviour, but today is the largest suite in the hotel, with a comfy L-shaped sofa and huge dining table. A pianist plays in the hotel’s piano bar most days and nights, and there’s an intimate champagne bar where only guests can drink. Rooms have original Georgian floorboards and fireplaces, vintage furniture and striking artwork.
The epitome of luxury
The Franklin is the perfect hotel for a romantic rendezvous. Not least because of its high-end Italian restaurant headed up by Michelin-starred Chef Alfredo Russo (ultimate date night territory), but it's also designed by Anouska Hempel, who has kitted the place out with a moody, sophisticated decor - think low enamel lampshades and potted palm plants. Opt for a Garden Suite to really indulge; you'll be treated to a luxurious four-poster bed and a large Juliette balcony accessible via aesthetic French doors.
The dictionary definition of luxe
Any stay at this iconic London institution is guaranteed to be a memorable one. It's one of London's most prestigious hotels and is the ultimate definition of luxury, with a sweeping staircase, luxurious breakfasts in bed and excellent afternoon tea. Sip on timeless cocktails in the Fumoir bar, which was once a cigar bar, now decorated in an Art Deco style. Stay in a suite if you want total luxury; they come with a personal butler, fresh flowers and the use of a Burberry trench coat during your stay. Penthouses have their own rooftop with epic views and a grand piano inside so that you can channel your inner Pretty Woman.