Join the ranks of the sartorial elite with a stay at the The May Fair Hotel’s Schiaparelli Suite
As the official hotel of London Fashion Week, come September it’ll be Hermès Birkin handbags at dawn to secure a night at the Schiaparelli Suite, the fuchsia-toned pied-à-terre that is a vivid tribute to Coco Chanel’s rival, Elsa Schiaparelli, and her bold Surrealist-inspired couture designs.
I’ve seen the photo of the suite’s ornate, golden gilded bed countless times before, but I still have to resist the temptation to dive head first into the cushion mountain while my guest and I are given the tour of our palatial one-bedroom pad. The fifty shades of pink suite is dressed in a tactile arrangement of fuchsia pony skin and leather, with antique Chinese figurines adopting a warlike stance on a side wall, and a framed, intricately adorned kimono in the bedroom. The bathroom is a more muted affair, decked out in calming limestone tones and crowned with an inviting freestanding egg bath.
King George V first opened the doors of The May Fair in 1927, but the hotel continues to move with the times, shrugging off the stuffiness that sometimes lingers in such long-standing establishments.
The communal areas radiate an elegant, understated luxury, which creates a relaxed, at-ease atmosphere.
This is echoed at the recently refurbished May Fair Kitchen, overseen by Amir Jati, former head of private dining at Nobu. With its rustic yet contemporary blend of light wooden interiors and copper filament-style lighting it’s the perfect place to unwind over some shared Mediterranean small plates.
Come daytime, we settle down at the communal bench, which runs the length of the floor-to-ceiling windows, to watch the world and his wife dash to Green Park tube as we tuck into poached eggs, ciabatta, crispy pancetta and truffle hollandaise, followed by homemade coconut yoghurt and mango from the breakfast bar.
Followed by half an hour in the spa’s dimly lit relaxation room, where the only background noise is the calming trickle of water, it’s the perfect tonic to ease the excesses of the night before, when we worked our way through some refreshing Stratton Street G&Ts (Sipsmith gin, Aperol and Peychaud’s bitters) in the electric blue lit May Fair Bar. If the sun is shining, you can head up to the secluded May Fair Terrace for cigars under its netted awning. Or, if you want to truly kick back and relax, head upstairs, take to your magenta chaise longue, channel your inner Anna Wintour and order room service via the in-room iPad. I recommend the wagyu beef sliders – I’m sure Anna would approve.