I stayed at The Ham Yard Hotel whilst composing my “My Secret City” collaboration with Reiss. As soon as I was given the brief, The Ham Yard Hotel as a place to stay instantly sprang to mind. Why? Living in London, it’s rare to find somewhere to stay which is considered a “secret” as such and if it’s unknown chances are it’s probably not reputable. I wanted to introduce both mine and Reiss’ readers to a beautifully decorated hotel, with a strong artistic and trendy flare. That is in fact built in a spot in the heart of Soho, which has been derelict since the 1950’s. Having previously visited the hotel before my stay, my first thoughts at arrival were “I had no idea this location were here”, this seems to be a generic reaction to most of The Ham Yards new comers. However, due to the impeccability and buzzing vibe of this hotel, it comes as no surprise that this location is no longer kept a secret. Built in a courtyard this urban village does not feel like Soho, but rather a secret community hidden away from the hustle & bustle.
Designed by the owner Kit Kemp, her strong eye for detail is evident through quirky paintings, contrasting wallpapers and a variety of perfectly patterned upholstery. Although the varied interior may not usually be to everyone’s taste, the mixture of designs unexpectedly compliment each other. The combination of vibrant colours, patterns and textures radiate a warm and energetic feel. Kemp’s distinctive interior design is unique and visually stunning, it seems impossible to leave the hotel feeling uninspired. The Ham Yard posses 91 rooms and suites, each which are individually designed with unpredicted elements of detail. However, it is noticeable that for Kemp, comfort is key. I stayed in a junior deluxe suite and was easily settled, this is always an important factor for me to feel home away from home and Kemp did this just right. With an extremely comfortable bed, a wide screen television practically placed in eye view, a marble bathroom with a his and hers sink, a bath with a tv and plenty of wardrobe space, all boxes were ticked. Not forgetting the bath robes and slippers, if you are unsure how to judge a hotel the bathrobe is an easy way to start!
If it’s not the delicious breakfast, then the location of The Ham Yard in the heart of bustling Soho gives you something worth getting out of bed for. Being a mere distance from London’s amenities, a couple of blocks from Mayfair hosting some of London’s most famous stores (Liberty London & Selfridges) and only a short distance into the land of Musical Theatre in Covent Garden, you will never find yourself short for anything to do.
The lively bar and buzzing restaurant attract one of London’s trendiest “scenes”. If you take pleasure in people spotting, don’t forget to pack your binoculars! The Ham Yard also boasts, a bowling alley where you can allocate slots or privately hire out, a spa, gym, private theatre/cinema hosting the likes of the famous magician Dynamo and a roof garden for hotel guests only or for hire.
Will I be back
Yes, there’s always an excuse to stay at a hotel in your own city. Before I find one, you’ll find me at the bar!
A stay at The Ham Yard Hotel starts from £318 per night see www.firmdalehotels.com/hotels/london/ham-yard-hotel/ for more info.