London, United Kingdom

Haymarket Hotel

Rates from (ex tax)$301.81

Price information

If you haven’t entered any dates, the rate shown is provided directly by the hotel and represents the cheapest double room (including tax) available in the next 21 days.

Prices have been converted from the hotel’s local currency (GBP288.00), via openexchangerates.org, using today’s exchange rate.

Style

Witty British bolthole

Setting

Theatreland thoroughfare

Located just off London’s Piccadilly Circus, hotels don’t come any more central than the Haymarket Hotel. More than a prime location, though, Kit Kemp's design delights with quirky and colourful interiors, there's a stylish indoor pool (flanked by a sleek bar), and a restaurant seemingly made for people-watching. It’s a lavish and comfortable base that somehow manages to feel like a bit of the country in the city.

Smith Extra

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Cocktails for two in the hotel bar

Facilities

Photos Haymarket Hotel facilities

Need to know

Rooms

50, including 17 suites, and a separate two- to five-bedroom townhouse.

Check–Out

11am, although this is flexible. Earliest check-in, 2pm.

Rates

Double rooms from $301.81 (£240), excluding tax at 20 per cent.

Price information

If you haven’t entered any dates, the rate shown is provided directly by the hotel and represents the cheapest double room (including tax) available in the next 21 days.

Prices have been converted from the hotel’s local currency (GBP288.00), via openexchangerates.org, using today’s exchange rate.

More details

Rates exclude breakfast (£19.50 a person).

At the hotel

Heated indoor pool, gym, treatment room, library, valet parking. In rooms: minibar, flatscreen TV and DVD player, CD player and iPod dock, free WiFi throughout, Miller Harris toiletries.

Our favourite rooms

Each room has its own palette of hues and patterns; we loved blue and brown Room 2, although it’s on the ground floor, which isn’t the quietest. Large corner rooms 111, 211 and 311 on the floors above have the same colour scheme. Deluxe doubles facing the courtyard are romantic. For wonderful views of London’s rooftops, get one of the smaller top-floor rooms; 402 has low-slung windows, giving it a first-class Haymarket vista. Junior Suite 100 has outdoor decking.

Poolside

There aren't many hotels in London that boast an 18-metre indoor pool as impressive as this one (if at all).

Packing tips

Bikinis or swimming trunks, so you can have a morning swim or afternoon dip in that gorgeous pool. An <i>A–Z</i> to help you navigate London's streets.

Also

Her Majesty's Theatre is on the hotel's doorstep; there's a special afternoon tea for matinee-goers, or a two-course dinner deal for evening attendees.

Children

Cots are free, and extra beds can be added to rooms for £66 a night. Babysitting costs £57.60 for two hours;£14 an hour thereafter. Games on request.

Food and Drink

Photos Haymarket Hotel food and drink

Top Table

We loved the cosy tables in the bar area; at night, a window seat is fun, but in daylight you might feel on view.

Dress Code

Savile Row sharpness or low-key London luxe.

Hotel restaurant

Tastefully patterned and elegantly canine-themed, Brumus Bar & Restaurant provides European brasserie classics care of Roger Sergent’s excellent kitchen brigade.

Hotel bar

During the day, the bar provides a place to pause for a cappuccino, or after the sun is past the yard-arm, a few Haymarket Cosmos or Brumus Margaritas. Doors close at 11.45, but those in situ can carry on regardless till 1am.

Last orders

1am for drinks. Brumus restaurant is open 7am–11pm (11.45pm for the post-theatre menu and bar snacks).

Room service

Available 24 hours a day.

Location

Photos Haymarket Hotel location
Address
Haymarket Hotel
1 Suffolk Place
SW1Y 4HX
London
United Kingdom

Planes

The hotel is around a 40-minute drive from London Heathrow, heading in from the west on the M4 and A4. From Gatwick, expect the drive to take just over an hour, depending on the city centre traffic.

Trains

The nearest Tube stations are Piccadilly Circus (on the Piccadilly and Bakerloo lines) and Leicester Square (on the Piccadilly and Northern lines). Victoria rail station is a 10-minute drive from the hotel. From here, Southern (www.southernrailway.com) will get you on your southbound way.

Automobiles

The hotel is in the middle of London's theatre district, with plenty of buses and Tubes running close by, so your own set of wheels will be redundant.

Worth getting out of bed for

You’re surrounded by London’s leading stages here, including the Theatre Royal Haymarket. If you haven’t booked ahead (www.officiallondontheatre.co.uk), visit the ‘tkts’ booth in Leicester Square, where boards list cut-price last-minute tickets for that day’s matinee and evening performances. You're also very close to the Institute of Contemporary Arts, better known as the ICA (+44 (0)20 7930 0493) and the leafy lakeside St James's Park (www.royalparks.org.uk), where the park's wildlife officers feed the pelicans every day at 2.30pm. The Serpentine Gallery, which hosts regular events and exhibitions of cutting-edge art and sculpture, is at the far end of the park.

Local restaurants

For a traditional British experience, with a sprinkling of pomp, head to The Wolseley on Piccadilly (+44 (0)20 7499 6996) for lunch or tea, or to Bentley’s Oyster Bar & Grill on Swallow Street (+44 (0)20 7734 4756): slurp oysters at the marble-topped champagne bar while pianists tickle the ivories; or dine upstairs, where Richard Corrigan works his magic in the Grill restaurant. Hakkasan on Hanway Place (+44 (0)20 7927 7000) has to be the sexiest Chinese restaurant ever; and it was the first to earn a Michelin star. Just off Regent Street, Veeraswamy (+44 (0)20 7734 1401) is the capital’s oldest Indian eatery, but it couldn’t feel more contemporary after its makeover. At The Ivy on West Street (+44 (0)20 7836 4751), you can brush shoulders with gossiping showbiz legends over classic British dishes. If you’re in the mood to splurge, multi-venue Sketch on Conduit Street (+44 (0)20 7659 4500) offers flashy French-fusion fantasies, brasserie fare, cocktails, or delicate patisseries in its tearoom. Created by world-renowned chef Virgilio Martinez, Lima (+44 (0)20 3002 2640) at 31 Rathbone Place uses Peruvian flavors and ingredients – sourced mainly from the UK or small growers in the Andes and Amazon – to create inventive dishes, presented in a clean, contemporary and downright dazzling style.

Reviews

Photos Haymarket Hotel reviews

Anonymous review

A brisk five-minute walk from my office on Savile Row, through the crowds of meandering tourists gawping at the bright lights of London’s West End, and I’m already in the lobby of my stylish stay for the night, bang on Haymarket. This feels strange; I only live 10 minutes down the road. ‘Have you come far?’ enquires the smiling person at the Haymarket Hotel's front desk, glancing at my miniscule piece of luggage. Before I can elaborate with some convoluted story involving lost bags or builders, Mrs Smith arrives, carrying even less. Would we be using the same name throughout our stay? A ‘yes’ from me, and a ‘no’ from Mrs Smith induces a knowing grin from the receptionist, who obviously thinks we’ve only just met in an internet chatroom, and have decided right away that the most upmarket place to initiate an illicit affair is at this hip London hotel round the corner from Trafalgar Square.

A cursory tour of the ground-floor guest areas takes us through an airy, art?filled conservatory, a sultry, sofa-filled library and an elegant drawing room, giving us a chance to take in Kit Kemp’s signature classic-yet-quirky clash of fabrics and furnishings, before being escorted up to our suite. At this point I remember having heard the word ‘upgrade’ mentioned – and when I see the size of our quarters, I realise this actually does mean that we’re about to experience the hotel equivalent of turning left as you board the front of a 747. The simple fact that our new abode has four doorways indicates to us that it’s first class; add to that two bathrooms, a bedroom and a living room.

After a quick scoot around, deciding who’s having which bathroom, we collapse on a plump sofa to take in our breezy modern British surroundings. The view from our bed is of a timeless, distinguished London side street, a beautiful Nash building mirroring our own fine Regency dwelling. This is a place where country?house charm meets London sophistication, where the home?from?home atmosphere is a refreshing departure from the usual five-star offerings in this postcode. We concur it would be the perfect base for a Hollywood star staying for an extended period while treading the boards locally; a hunch that is later evidenced when we just catch a famous face dart behind the Tony Cragg sculpture in reception.

The 50-room Haymarket Hotel prides itself on all of its sleeping salons having a unique personality. This is no temple to minimalism: fresh colours and textures abound, not to mention old and antique furniture of various shapes and sizes. The super?high bed reminds me of the kind usually only experienced from behind a velvet rope, when you’re dragged around stately homes as a child. Among Mrs Smith’s professional accomplishments are fabric and textile design, and eyeing up the pretty, contemporary chintz of the curtains, with candy-striped cushions and boldly upholstered padded headboards, she declares it wonderfully cosy and comfortable. A compliment not to be sniffed at when delivered by a native of Sweden, where tastes lean towards a simpler, more functional approach to decor.

Sure, there are museums, theatres, shops and nightlife galore here in St James’s. But, by now officially in holiday mode (despite it being a workday on home soil), Mrs Smith and I forgo plans to see a film at the Institute of Contemporary Arts in favour of the novelty of slipping into swimwear for a pre-dinner dip. The pool is in the basement, and my initial fear of a glorified birdbath in a strip-lighting-illuminated dungeon couldn’t have been more misplaced. Its Yves Klein-blue 18-metre splendour sparkles under twinkling lights, flanked by a fully stocked bar along one wall and a sprinkling of gold chaises longues. This is a fantasy grotto for grown-ups and, amplifying the ‘Club Tropicana’ kitsch appeal, on our visit, half of it is covered up with a temporary dancefloor. Sadly, before we’ve a chance to wonder if the ‘drinks are free’, and just as we’re poised to plunge into the inviting water, someone pops their head round the door to apologetically announce that it’s reserved for a one-off event – a rarity, we’re told. Still, the needle on our imaginary Wham! soundtrack comes to a screeching halt, and we trudge back to our boudoir, plotting to return later.

As a decent alternative to splashing about in public, we decide that the marble bathrooms might compensate for our swimmus interruptus. Filling the bath, and pouring in a cocktail of the Miller Harris potions, we luxuriate in a haze of sweet scents for an episode of The Simpsons on the big flatscreen TV. Not quite as highbrow as the ICA documentary but, as the remote bobs in the water like a new-age rubber duck, we agree it’s probably a damn sight more fun.

As an aficionado of the Piccadilly locale, I’m familiar with what this well-trodden patch of central London has on offer. So, heading for the hotel’s own eatery, Brumus, suits us just fine. With its own potent colours and cunningly contrasting textures (but of a darker and richer variety), the restaurant has an intimate and, dare I say it, romantic feel. We’re shown to our seats by the window, and having briefly looked at the menus, we reach across the table to hold hands and simultaneously gaze out onto this famous London street – and note the less-than-starry-eyed souls queuing for the 159 bus outside.

As darkness falls, we become more invisible to the throngs outside and are soon entertained by the comings and goings of excited Phantom of the Opera ticket-holders across the road. The people-watching reveals more eccentricities than the international cuisine, which plays it a little safer than you’d expect in such a bold habitat. Still, that doesn’t stop us enjoying one too many glasses of something chilled and Italian in blissed-out comfort, and down the corridor we bounce towards our suite. We’re a little thrown by voices emanating from our room; a quick double-check – it’s definitely the right number. Ahh, the bedside radio has been tuned into something classical. ‘How cosy,’ proclaims Mrs Smith again. Although this time there’s a glint in her eye. I’m hoping that means the last thing on her mind is an appreciation of the upholstery…

The Guestbook

Whenever you book a stay at a Smith Hotel with us, we’ll invite you to review it when you get back. Read what other Smith members had to say in Haymarket Hotel’s Guestbook below.

We loved

Everything. Location, friendly staff, our room. Minutes from Leicester Square and a short walk to Covent Garden. Book last minute tickets for a musical at the Ticket Box office in Leicester Square. Lots of lovely bars and restaurants in close proximty. Definitely try cocktails in Brumus.

Don’t expect

To be disappointed, it's a lovely place to stay.

Rating

Stayed on 24 Sep 2016

We loved

The rooms are beautifully designed and absolutely spotless. The service is top notch and the swimming pool is bathed in pink light. Great location for theatre land especially the Haymarket Theatre. Just next door, it's close enough to pop back for a drink in the interval!

Don’t expect

Check out can feel a bit early at eleven am

Rating

Stayed on 26 Aug 2016

We loved

Stylish and comfortable bedroom. Lovely public rooms. The restaurant and bar are also very good.

Don’t expect

Poor service: you won't have that here.

Rating

Stayed on 9 Jan 2016

We loved

The location, the room and especially the food.

Don’t expect

To be disappointed: we weren't!

Rating

Stayed on 2 Jan 2016

We loved

The location, the decor, the wonderful staff, the honor bar off the lobby (they do have a real bar and restaurant too).

Don’t expect

This is not a grand dame of a hotel with a huge lobby where you can spend the day. This smallish size hotel is a great base for getting up and exploring the city.

Rating

Stayed on 16 Nov 2015

We loved

Quality of finish, standard of fixtures, fittings linen. Friendly attentive staff. Ten out of 10.

Don’t expect

Breakfast - overcooked bacon, undercooked eggs.

Rating

Stayed on 30 Jan 2015

We loved

Tranquil.

Rating

Stayed on 11 Jan 2015

We loved

Don't remember having nicer staff anywhere in all of my travels - amazing! Gorgeous atmosphere as well.

Don’t expect

Pool could have been a tad warmer - but still amazing!

Rating

Stayed on 27 Dec 2014