The Wolk Morais Guide To London’s Ultimate Hot Spots This London Fashion Week

London Fashion Week kicks off today and Brian Wolk and Claude Morais of Wolk Morais want to ensure you're armed with a list of the need-to-know spots in town...

by The Daily Front Row

It’s that time of the year when the fashion folk flock to Europe to take in new collections, graze at the newest dining establishments, and temporarily habitate at the hottest hotels. Luckily, we’ve done the groundwork for you and compiled a chic guide—so sit back, sip on your G&T, and let the games begin. First up, London….

The Haute Hotel: The Mandarin Oriental Hyde Park

The history of the Mandarin Oriental Hyde Park’s building is as aristocratic and elegant as its posh interiors. The stately property was originally conceived as an upper class gentlemen’s club and residence in 1889. About a decade later, the then- director of Harrods began the process of transforming the space into what would become—and still is!—the most fashionable hotel in the city. The clientele reads like a who’s who of celebrities, socialites, diplomats, and aristocrats. In fact, the park entrance of the hotel is still reserved for royals—unless you mere mortals have written permission to use it.

Entering the hotel is like stepping into a world of unbridled luxury: the lobby walls are flanked with an awe-inspiring melange of marble gathered from eight different countries, and the air is perfumed with Mandarin Star; the addictive signature fragrance of the hotel. But what makes the hotel particularly incredible is its ability to flawlessly integrate modernity, history, and style into a gorgeous symphony for the senses. The rooms and suites have been artfully reimagined to reflect the hotel’s powerful provenance with a contemporary point of view. The Hyde Park Suite is a bastion of civilization. Art Deco details are employed throughout the spaces highlighted by the use exotic woods, silk upholstery, a carved fireplace, and grand windows with panoramic views of the park. The bedroom is complete with a seating area, and a marble en suite bathroom with a tub and shower stocked with Diptyque products. There is no lack of closet space for those with a pension for fine shopping, either! Thankfully, because London’s most desirable department stores and boutiques are all within walking distance. Other more sporty amenities of the property include an award-winning spa, a 17 meter twin-lane stainless steel swimming pool, and for those feeling shy about exercising amongst others in the state-of-the-art health center, the concierge will arrange for a TechnoGym bike and bench to be brought to your suite. Last, but not least, there’s the incredible culinary experiences, including an afternoon tea experience at The Rosebury, the double Michelin-starred restaurant Dinner, and the very stylish Aubrey. More about that coming up!

Pan-Asian Perfection: The Aubrey
Discreetly tucked away in The Mandarin Oriental, The Aubrey feels like an art collector’s private piedàterre. The space consists of a series of rambling, tastefully-appointed wood paneled rooms that are beautifully curated with paintings, illustrations, and velvet salon-like furniture set amongst amber lit bookshelves. The traditional decor is in diametrical opposition to the wildly inventive Japanese Cuisine and masterful mixology. Standouts included Charcoal Chicken Karaage, Truffle Croquettes, Aubergine Robata, and the insanely delicious Wagyu and Bone Marrow Fried Rice. The cocktails created with bespoke liqueurs are all masterpieces in their own right, but our personal favorites included The Death of the Lion and a unique take on the classic Boulevardier.

Gorgeous Gastropub: The Pelican
This London institution, which is over 150 years old, has defined the modern gastropub culinary movement under the guise of James Gummer and head chef Owen Kenworthy. The magnificent candlelit decor highlights the pub’s swanky Notting Hill crowd, who delight in the modern rustic cuisine offering of locally-grown sustainable produce, fish, and meats.

Fabulous Fry Up: The Tin Shed
There is no better way to squash a fashion week hangover than a traditional English breakfast! The cheery atmosphere and bohemian clientele at The Tin Shed is the perfect antidote to any worldly crisis. Cast aside your diet and dive into the delectable baked goods—it’s worth the calories!

TikTok to Table: Straker’s
Chef Thomas Straker’s rise to fame occurred during lockdown, when his viral cooking videos amassed a great following. Fast forward to his first restaurant, Straker’s, where his well-prepared, simple British cooking incorporates the finest quality ingredients. The flavorful fare and Mr. Straker’s dedicated fanbase has made this intimate neighborhood restaurant an international sensation.

London Fashion Week

Exclusively Italian: Harry’s Dolce Vita
Located in the shadow of Harrods, Harry’s Dolce Vita is filled with Knightsbridge locals and curious onlookers. This elegant and fashionable haunt offers some of the best Italian fare in London. The customizable Negroni menu alone is worth the trip across the pond!

Sexy in Soho: Dear Jackie & The Flute
Opulence, seduction, and Diana Vreeland-approved shades of red abound at Dear Jackie. London’s hottest restaurant is a love letter to disco and al dente decadence. Devilishly dark lighting and fiendishly delicious pasta make the dining experience a sinful sensation. Après-dinner, take the private elevator up to Flute, the rooftop bar, where the champagne flows and sparkly Londonites lounge leisurely.

OOT Italian: Carlotta
“Over the top” would be an understatement when it comes to describing the decor, food, and service at Carlotta. Think: New Jersey Italian wedding venue in Las Vegas under the direction of Baz Luhrmann. An anomaly in the very tony Marylebone neighborhood of London, one can spend hours ogling at the vintage family photos, Venetian satin drapery, and pattern-on-pattern carpeting and wallpaper. Portions are as grand as the creative direction, and the service is full of love and personality. Viva Carlotta!

London Fashion Week

Arts & Crafts: Ladbroke Hall
Housed in an enormous former Edwardian car showroom and assembly plant, this grand Beaux-Arts building is the latest addition to the London arts and social club scene. With a focus on applied arts, design, and performance, Ladbroke Hall is a cultural meeting place where London’s bright young things coalesce, dine, and exchange creative inspiration.

Hot Nights: Chiltern Firehouse

Chiltern Firehouse still holds the torch for London’s most fashionable nightspot. On any given Tuesday night, models, designers, and rock stars drink martinis and smoke cigarettes in the not-so-secret subterranean lounge. A fashion week mecca, make sure you get on the guestlist, because the competition at the door is as fierce as the crowd.

Couture Club: Gabrielle Chanel. Fashion Manifesto
Extended due to popular demand, this bio-epic of an exhibition is de riguer for dedicated followers of fashion. From the very beginning to her final swan song, Gabrielle Chanel’s world is explored in couture detail. Run, don’t walk, to this incredible exhibition at The Victoria and Albert Museum.

London Fashion Week

That’s all folks, we will see you in Paris! And there is no chicer, more fashionable or sustainable way to cross the English Channel than by Eurostar Business Premier, where wine is delightful, the food is delicious, and you’re allowed three pieces of luggage!


Images: Brian Wolk/Claude Morais/Steven Kohlstock

Click HERE for more info on London Fashion Week

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