As the Shangri-La’s first UK outpost, this luxury hotel boasts the best views of London. It’s 360-degree vistas of the capital from just about everywhere that make a stay here truly memorable. Since opening in 2014, Shangri-La has already been voted one of the ‘Top Hotels in London’ by Conde Nast Traveler readers.
Shangri-La in the UK
This London’s first elevated luxury hotel occupies levels 34 to 52 of the iconic Renzo Piano designed building – The Shard. Shangri-La truly brings Asian hospitality to the UK, with Chinese tea being offered upon arrival. In the main areas of the hotel, the designers have adopted a contemporary approach to present the sumptuous Oriental motifs. This is a fundamental part of the Shangri-La brand’s DNA.
It’s location does not disappoint either, and is ideal for business and leisure travellers alike. Situated in one of London’s most vibrant and historic areas, the hotel is close to city’s key attractions. For example, Tate Modern, Shakespeare’s Globe, the Tower of London and St. Paul’s Cathedral are just a short walk or drive away. Plus, it is just across the river from The City of London, and a scenic 15-minute river taxi ride from the Canary Wharf.
There’s a total of 202 rooms, including 17 suites, all with floor-to-ceiling windows. Five categories of rooms range from Superior Shard to Iconic City View, categorised by view rather than size. Inside the rooms, smudge-effect blue carpets bring the sky inside, and contrast the beige of upholstery and fabrics elsewhere. My favourite thing is the marble bathroom with heated floor and the L’Occitane toiletries. When it comes to the most spectacular suites, like Westminster and London, they all have walk-in wardrobes and telescopes. And of course, they are serviced by personal butlers. At the end of a busy day, I really enjoyed a dip in the hotel’s indoor infinity pool on level 52, before a few drinks at Shangri-La’s stylish GŎNG bar.
About one Ting
Derived from the Chinese word for ‘living room’, TĪNG, is the collective name of Shangri-La’s signature restaurant and lounge. Defined by delicate screens, the space hints at subtle glamour. At the same time, the minimalistic architecture of the building complements the urban cityscape.
My partner and I started our evening with the glass of Veuve Cliquot champagne at the Ting lounge, soaking in a backdrop of unsurpassed, iconic London views. Comfortable furnishings exhibit classic clean lines with a modern touch, while the golden translucent screens lined with Chinese ink paintings present a subtle glamour. We thought that nothing could beat the Lounge view, until we were ushered to our dinner table with a stunning view of Tower of London which took our breath away.
Dinner with a view
Ting is one of the most romantic restaurants in London, with a grand piano at its centre. It is also the ideal culinary destination for any occasion, but its romantic atmosphere & breathtaking views makes it a perfect place for a marriage proposal.
As for the food, the menu is European with an Asian twist, made using locally-sourced ingredients. Here, foie gras is accompanied by rhubarb, strawberry, sesame, mint and brioche, while cornish lobster is served tandoori-style with yoghurt, mango and pak choy. We went for a three-course tasting menu with wine pairings. For starters, I enjoyed Ballotine of Pork with pistachio and beetroot chutney, which was quite filling. Meanwhile, my Mr indulged in gin and tonic cured salmon with beetroot and Dorset crab, paired with Pinot Noir from Burgundy (2015).
For the main, I prefered to continue with meat and went for delicious salt marsh lamb cutlets with seaweed butter, sprint vegetables and mint. However, my partner’s choice of halibut veronique with champagne, brown shrimp and samphire was definitely a winner. It went perfectly well with Macabeo blend, Le Soula VdP des Cotes Catalanes from France (2009). As you know, my favourite part of the meal is dessert, however my citrus creme was a bit disappointing. Rhubarb and Vanilla was a better option as it was quickly finished by my Mr. Oh well, at least I managed to fit into my wedding dress a few weeks later!
For more information about Shangri-La London, please check out http://www.shangri-la.com/london/shangrila/ .