There are few venues that are truly tranquil. Even more rare, the chance of uncovering the tranquil within the commotion of a city.
Tucked away in the busy West end of London, The Sanderson is a 5 Star hotel with a difference.
Designed by Philippe Starck, the interior of the luxury retreat is best described as a melting place of the clever surrealism of Salvador Dali, West African art, a cubist influence and elements of the 1960′s. This mix should not work in theory but its genius is that it not only works harmoniously but also has this unexpected calm.
Perhaps this serenity I notice each time I’m at The Sanderson, is further facilitated by the lack of inner walls within hotel spaces.
I have long favored the hotel’s Courtyard Garden (perfect for meetings with clients) and Agua Spa (one of only two spas in London where I can completely relax). Thus when I was invited to experience the launch of their new complimentary Staycation package, I had to clear my diary.
I’ve been in many five star hotels across the globe but few strike that balance of aspirational high conceptual design (matched with excellent service) and approachability.
I was warmly received as I checked in and was swiftly shown to my suite by a pleasant bell boy. It was a delight to find, that it was as serene, as the other parts of the hotel that I’m already acquainted with.
First point of call was a Mad Hatter’s Afternoon Tea Party that would make Alice in Wonderland green with envy. The feast included a Queen of Hearts cake with a mousse center so light, it melted in your mouth. A rainbow hued, selection of sandwiches, gourmet chocolate lollipops with an exploding praline infused center and many other delightful treats.
After a siesta (as an insomniac who sleeps an average of 4-6 hours a night, an afternoon siesta is a miracle for me) I was ushered into the peace that is the Agua Spa and found that it was still as soothing as I remembered. It is always a pleasure when one can come to rely on a service to be a specific standard each time. My masseuse for the day, Matthew was fantastic. The signature full body massage lured me into my second afternoon slumber.
On getting back to my suite, one minute I was writing a proposal, the next minute I was asleep. I have not napped in years. Three naps in one afternoon? A sure miracle.
The evening brought canapes (Lithuanian, Polish, English etc) and sliders in the residents only, Purple Bar. In the neighbouring space, an art installation (open till 14th August 2011) called Construct & Comply by DSC. The thought provoking work examines how far luxury brands can push the boundaries of their branding, whilst staying desirable to their consumer.
Dinner was at Suka in the Courtyard Garden; an exquisite and authentic Malaysian menu with a slight western sensibility. In accompaniment to the food was entertainment by Morecambe based indie rock band, The Hearbreaks. Their live set was a breath of fresh air. Best described somewhat as, a melancholic romantic fuse, of country western-retro Motown pop-punk rock-bluegrass.
That set by The Heartbreaks as paired with the magic of the Courtyard Garden by night and the tangible flow of calm, throughout the five star hotel, made for the perfect end to a truly decadent and rejuvenating (did I already mention I had three afternoon naps already?) day.
I think I may have found the remedy to my insomnia. A permanent move into the hotel may just be on the cards.
The Sanderson is an Object of my Affection.
The Sanderson, 50 Berners Street, London W1T 3NG is part of the Morgans Hotel Group.
More information on the 5 Star hotel here.
Kind thanks to The Sanderson, Morgans Hotel Group and Purple PR.
More in the Object of my Affection segment here.