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April 18, 2020updated May 18, 2020

Brown’s Hotel

First opening its doors in 1837, Brown’s holds the enviable title of London’s first hotel.

By Alex Martin

Owned and operated by Rocco Forte, Brown’s Hotel sits in the heart of London’s Mayfair just a stone’s throw from Bond Street. First opening its doors in 1837, Brown’s holds the enviable title of London’s first hotel and counts royalty, Oscar winners, and musicians amongst its past guests. It was also the sight of the world’s first telephone call, made by inventor Alexander Graham Bell. The hotel’s age gives it a huge dose of charm with creaking floorboards and narrow corridors creating a palpable sense of legacy. The Donovan Bar is widely considered to be one of the best places to drink in the city. Its stained-glass window panel dates back to the 1830s while the beautiful bar area and plush velvet armchairs throw you back to old-school glamour. The hotel is also home to Charlie’s, a wonderful restaurant from Michelin-starred chef Adam Byatt. Read our review of Charlie’s here.

Top suite: Kipling Suite

In what is another absurdly good anecdote, Rudyard Kipling is said to have written The Jungle Book while staying at Brown’s Hotel. In honor of the novelist, the hotel has dedicated its most distinguished residence to his name. The tribute begins outside the front door where a statue of a cheeky monkey greets residents. The suite also contains several framed handwritten letter from the author himself as well as other nods to Kipling throughout.

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