Sybarites can move seamlessly from a detox to a retox at Hotel Café Royal in Piccadilly with a number of new launches in the spa, as well as a hip new members’ club.
The hotel, whose previous patrons include Winston Churchill, Brigitte Bardot and Elizabeth Taylor, was also famous for holding bloody boxing matches and has just introduced boxing of a less competitive nature, in the form of lessons in the padded boxing room, located in its haven-like Akasha spa. Guests can learn to master the right hook with professional coach Marianne Marston (£95, included as part of a day spa pass), then take a dip in the Watsu pool (£120 for 50 minutes) – an exclusive treatment space dedicated to water therapy, where the body is continuously supported in water for a feeling of weightlessness and then cradled, rocked and stretched in a combination of Shiatsu therapy and massage. If this is too Zen, a scrub down in the recently opened hammam (£120 for 50 minutes) will scour away the aches and pains of the day.
However, for some real decadence, head upstairs to the members’ club, which has a soft opening this month, with membership applications being accepted from Monday July 14 (price on request). The doors are formally set to open in September. The interiors of the first-floor space have been overseen by March & White, and fuse elegant English and French design – a cosseting exuberance of bespoke rugs and plush velvets.
The Club offers all-day dining from a kitchen overseen by executive chef Andrew Turner. The Domino Dining Room (first picture) serves modern British cuisine, including dishes such as Cornish crab with sesame crème fraiche; The Library Bar (second picture) offers cocktails such as the WJ Turner, made with gin, honey spirit, jasmine tea and lemon cordial; and The Gallery serves a light lunch. The Studio, meanwhile, is a cultural hub and lounge bar that overlooks Regent Street and hosts a curated programme of events ranging from boutique opera, cutting-edge musical performances and immersive theatre to debates and lectures. The jewel in the crown, however, is the gilded fantasy that is the Oscar Wilde Bar, formerly known as The Grill Room, which will be available to club members until 3am, with live entertainment.