Fodor's Expert Review Rosewood London

252 High Holborn, London, WC1V 7EN, England, London, England See on Map

Sited behind one of the most spectacular hotel facades in the city, the Rosewood London is a luxury hideaway amidst the hustle and bustle of High Holborn. A Grade II listed building, the grand Edwardian monument is all pillars, arches and towering turrets, a stately palace set right by one of London’s busiest central locations. Only turned into a hotel as late as the beginning of the new millennium, the Rosewood is now a stylish choice for guests who want a smart, luxury abode in the West End without paying quite the level of similarly luxe properties with more storied reputations.


In the spacious rooms, overly fussy decoration is kept to a minimum. Instead, the hotel opts for classy white walls, puffy neutral bed linen and stylish stripes. Some might find the look a little austere but we appreciate the serenity of the parred back look.

YOU SHOULD KNOW Guests staying with children are provided for with the hotel's Executive Family Room, a spacious base that is a money-saving alternative to a suite.


If you thought the rooms could do with a little pimping, the stunning mirrored marble bathrooms add the touch of luxury you’re after. Bathrooms come with sunken bathtubs with showers and luxe D.R. Harris bath products.


Spacious and open, the monochrome lobby at the Rosewood is pure luxury. Expect mirrors, polished striped floors, glass tanks featuring an array of artistic curiosities and comfortable leather armchairs. Perhaps more impressive than the lobby is the courtyard entrance to the hotel. Located behind thick black gates, the sight of cobblestones, weighty stone pillars and manicured hedges give the impression of a country estate rather than a West End hotel.


The wellness spa consists of a gorgeous collection of rooms located in a zen-like oasis of serenity—see the sweet wooden bridges suspended above slow trickling water that lead to the spa area. In addition to treatments and massage, the wellness suite is home to a high-end salon.


While most gyms are banished to the basement, the Rosewood allows its workout suite to breathe, with large arched windows letting in floods of daylight while guests sweat it out. High-tech equipment is standard and most machines come hooked up to TVs. Along with the cardio machines, the well-appointed gym has a free weights space.


With a quaint, typically English lounge restaurant and a classic brasserie bar complete with oak details, brass rails and red banquettes, plus a soon-to-open space dedicated exclusively to pies, the dining options at the Rosewood are plentiful. The vibrant Holborn Dining Room is particularly popular with guests and non-guests alike.

On top of the dining options, the hotel serves afternoon tea daily. Inspired by the world of art and artists the contemporary twist on the classic pastime features pastries styled in the vein of artists like Jeff Koons, Damien Hirst and Jackson Pollack.


The sophisticated Scarfes Bar is everything you want from a hotel bar. A roaring log fire, oak bookshelves filled with leather bound tomes, dimly lit Tiffany lamps and plenty of cozy nooks in which to lose oneself for an hour or five.


Getting Around

While the area directly outside the hotel is a continuous hive of activity, take a walk for a block or two and you’ll happen upon Bloomsbury and its quiet streets. In particular, check out the vibrant Lamb’s Conduit Street and its array of independent boutiques, focusing primarily on men’s fashion. In the other direction, Covent Garden is a five-minute walk with Theatreland and Soho close by. For public transport Holborn Station is right around the corner from where the Central Line runs all the way from the east to the west of the city. Taxis can conveniently pick you up from the hotel’s regal courtyard.


Eat contemporary cuisine with an Asian twist at chef Tom Dixon’s uber-stylish restaurant Bronte (12-minute drive). For something a little less overtly cool, try the equally chic Jar Kitchen (8-minute walk) where the finest British ingredients are utilised in the modern European dishes. For fish, there’s nowhere better—or more iconic—in central London than J Sheekey (15-minute walk).


A timeless classic cocktail bar in a Covent Garden basement, it feels like Freud (10-minute walk) has been around since London bars began. It hasn’t of course but the years it has been around have led it to hone its good-natured atmosphere and strong drinks to perfection. Forget the steak you can smell sizzling on the grill, you’ve come to Hawksmoor Seven Dials (12-minute walk) for the cocktails. Order the Corpse Reviver and see how fun your night turns out.


An almost incongruously huge hotel to find nestled in the heart of Holborn, there’s something calming knowing that however much the city can hustle you, there’s always the grand courtyard and country estate escape of the Rosewood available to you at its center. Cheaper than most five-star luxury hotels and in a livelier location than the status-heavy strip of Park Lane, it feels as if the Rosewood Hotel strives to make up for its lack of history and renown. This is a good thing for the guest in that we found a hotel with great drinking and dining options, one of the most impressive facades you’ll ever see and keen service. A great choice should you want luxury close to the sights and spectacle of Central London.


Business, Historical, Romantic, Service
294 rooms, 12 suites
Breakfast Yes
Lunch Yes
Dinner Yes
Bar Yes
Cafe No
Room Service Yes
Valet Parking


Phones: 020-7781–8888;888-767–3966-in U.S.

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