The Cadogan Hotel, once home to Oscar Wilde, opens a new chapter in London
In the coming months London’s posh Chelsea neighborhood will welcome back one of its most storied properties. After a three-year, $67 million renovation, the Belmond Cadogan Hotel will reopen and become the British brand’s first address in the UK capital. The company, which was recently acquired by LVMH (a big move for the luxury conglomerate, which has carefully expanded its hospitality footprint over the past decade), is no stranger to restoring historic gems back to their former glory.
The Cadogan, which is comprised of five adjoining town houses, will retain its characteristic Queen Anne Revival–style architecture (also seen in the nearby ultra-private 11 Cadogan Gardens hotel) and original design elements like working fireplaces, mosaic flooring, and 130-year-old wood paneling. What’s new are the 54 accommodations, a majority of them suites, all with a residential feel and palette of deep reds and rich browns accented by pops of colour and contemporary art by up-and-coming female artists.
Though there is a plenty plush lobby, guests will also have the option of using a private entrance, which was once the entry to Lillie Langtry’s home. Nods to the socialite-cum-actress are found throughout the property in the form of delicate gold-leaf wall sconces featuring her calling card of the royal feathers and her quarters now serve as room 106. But the hotel’s most famous dweller was perhaps Oscar Wilde, who was arrested at the Cadogan in 1895 for being gay, a crime in England at the time. His former pied-à-terre has been transformed into the Royal Suite and features high ceilings, separate living room and dining spaces, a balcony, park views, and an expansive marble bathroom with a tub that overlooks Belgravia.
In addition to its sumptuous accommodations, the property will also have a grand library filled with 600 books-yes, you can expect a few of Wilde’s tomes in the mix-and guests will have access to the private 37.5-hectare Cadogan Estate Gardens, complete with tennis courts and a playground. And when you’re not out about town sampling some of the finest fare London has to offer-like Clare Smyth’s two-Michelin-star Core-check out one of the Cadogan’s eateries. Helmed by rising star Adam Handling, the signature fine-dining restaurant promises exceptional seasonal British cuisine with a sustainable and no-waste approach. For more casual options, there’ll also be a quaint terrace café starring freshly baked pastries; an elegant bar shaking up classic cocktails; and a lounge serving up lunch, afternoon tea, and nightcaps.