New-look Kettner’s Townhouse wows

Soho House’s twist on tradition brings comfort and contemporary cachet to London’s legendary landmark

William Morris-print wallpapers are just one of the nostalgic touches at Soho House-owned Kettner’s Townhouse in central London
William Morris-print wallpapers are just one of the nostalgic touches at Soho House-owned Kettner’s Townhouse in central London

Every so often I hear someone posit that as the Soho House brand expands, so its cachet is steadily diluted. To them I’d say, book into Kettner’s Townhouse (kettnerstownhouse.com; from £190), the newly renovated Soho House-owned restaurant with rooms adjacent to the original Greek Street clubhouse in London, and be promptly disabused of this notion.

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The place is one big gorgeous precision strike of nostalgia, from the William Morris prints and autumnal-toned velvet headboards in the rooms to the live piano (hits of the 1930s and ’40s, when I was there in February) in the early evening in the cosy bar. So many single elements – the faux‑gas lamps with their ruched shades, the nursery’s worth of potted palms, the etched mirrors, a skirted vanity here and there – could have gone horribly wrong. But it is all actually so right. My solo stay in a big corner room, with a freestanding tub next to a window giving onto a narrow slice of Cambridge Circus, was one of the most winning I’ve had in years.

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