By John O’Ceallaigh
If you’re looking for the Burgenstock Collection’s newly acquired English property The Adria, one thing you should be aware of is that if you Google ‘The Adria hotel London’ you may be directed to a suspiciously cheap £80-a-night address somewhere inauspicious near Hammersmith rather than the significantly more expensive property that’s discreetly placed around the corner from the National History Museum and V&A in South Kensington.
That’s not ideal in terms of SEO and a few jet-lagged long-haulers may find themselves in a bit of a muddle, but it does indicate how under-the-radar this property is. Despite living in London and writing about the city’s many luxury hotels and its best suites for so many years, I had never heard of the place before I visited recently. I was confused even as I approached it. A Union Flag hung outside the building, but from afar I barely noticed the ‘A’ on just one side of a wall, and I had to ring a doorbell to enter.
If you do manage to find your way there, and gain entry, the welcome at The Adria is warm and appropriately homely. The intimate 19th-century property features just 24 rooms, each with distinctly British names rather than numbers (Bowler, Umbrella; I was in the Elizabeth). You’ll find complementary artworks and quirks in reference to your room’s theme; there are classic marble bathrooms; the bedrooms are muted generally, though it’s calming. (A quirk that may not be appreciated by everybody: you might feel an occasional rumble from Tube trains passing underneath – not enough to disturb sleep, but definitely noticeable on occasion).
Another quirk, with this address being so petite and discreet compared to many luxury hotels in London – and the Burgenstock Collection’s other properties such as its colossal and multifaceted Burgenstock Resort in Switzerland, and Lausanne’s Royal Savoy Hotel & Spa – is that it doesn’t feature a full restaurant service. A pantry space with a bar set-up is open throughout the day, and a concise breakfast menu features staples like a Full English, smoked salmon bagels, and fluffy pancakes. A traditional afternoon tea can be taken in one of the drawing and living rooms spread across the ground floor (which also make handy casual working spaces). For dinner, if you’re not investigating one of Kensington’s restaurants you can order a delivery which the team will plate up and make pretty.
Other than that, there’s a basic gym in the basement though really the point of being here is to have a well-located and super-discreet West London bolthole rather than choosing a property with lots of plush facilities. What’s interesting too is that the hotel’s recent takeover and renovation signifies a new tenure for the Burgenstock Collection, which has more ambitious plans in place for its growth in the years to come. More details will be revealed about that soon.
Double superior rooms at The Adria start from £375.
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