15 amazing hotels in and around London to celebrate the Coronation
Fancy going all out for the Coronation weekend with a trip to the heart of the action? It’s sure to be a unique experience (the last one was 70 years ago, after all) and there are still lovely hotels available to book. The best of them are certainly getting into the regal spirit, with a host of special packages and experiences on offer.
The ceremony itself is on May 6 at Westminster Abbey – before which crowds can watch King Charles III and the Queen Consort make their way from Buckingham Palace to Westminster Abbey in The King’s Procession. A larger procession takes place after the service, where members of the Royal family accompany the King and Queen Consort on their way back to Buckingham Palace.
The day’s ceremonial events finish with a signature balcony appearance. From grandiose afternoon teas to themed cocktails, royal tours, VIP access and quintessential garden parties, here are the best hotels to celebrate the Coronation in flag-waving style, both in the capital and nearby locations such as Windsor and Hampton Court with royal connections.
Dukes London, Mayfair
Snuggled away down a tiny alley, Dukes – much like its always-fluttering Union Jack flag hovering over the entrance – has been a constant British institution since 1908. Reassuringly old fashioned, it has hosted many famous names over the past century. It’s even rumoured that there’s a secret tunnel between Dukes’ legendary martini bar and nearby St James’s Palace (so that royals can discreetly slip from their duties for an upmarket evening tipple).
In the spirit of this heritage, a key element of the hotel’s Royal Connoisseur Experience package is by appointment-only access to some of this aristocratic area’s finest designers and merchants. Take a tour of Lock & Co Hatters Heritage Room and enjoy a head-measuring experience that dates back to the 1850s, indulge in a traditional shave and haircut at Truefitt & Hill, and sip a bottle of The King’s Ginger liqueur from nearby Berry Bros & Rudd.
Royal Connoisseur Experience package available now, from £2,225 for three nights as above including breakfast (0207 318 6585; dukeshotel.com)
The Rubens at the Palace, Belgravia
The building of this hotel – quite literally opposite the Royal Mews of Buckingham Palace and the entrance used by the Royal family – was once actually part of the royal estate itself so feels suitably storied. It's a five-star offering, however its charm lies in its almost staunch refusal to be modern; so expect beautiful, but supremely traditional, design with regal frills (such as the huge collection of oil paintings of royals or the 171 crystal chandeliers).
There's a big menu of events happening throughout May, and some things, like the special Coronation afternoon tea (£70 per person), are available all the way through until August. Most exciting though are the seven-course themed dinners. The first is served in the Curry Room restaurant on the May 4 (£125 per person) integrating royal history with Indian fare. On the May 5, a seven-course meal will be hosted in the English Grill restaurant (£295 per person) with dishes such as Wye Valley asparagus soup with wild garlic pesto – paired with plenty of champagne.
Doubles from £507 including breakfast (0207 834 6600, rubenshotel.com)
Hyatt Regency London – The Churchill, Marylebone
Sitting a few streets back from Oxford Street on leafy Portman Square, the five-star Churchill is the preferred property for visiting diplomats awaiting their audience with the monarch. It’s therefore not unusual to find a State landau (ceremonial horse-drawn carriage) outside ready to begin its journey to the palace.
The hotel’s four-bedroom Churchill Residential Suite is one of the largest in London, making it a favourite with visiting royals, so you never know who you might glimpse in the Montagu Kitchen restaurant, or having a cocktail in the Churchill Bar – a lively drinking haunt with heated outdoor terrace in the spirit of the bon vivant himself (Winston Churchill’s own paintings and other memorabilia adorn the walls).
Guests booking the Sleep Like a King package can expect VIP treatment, with a private check-in, exclusive access to Portman Square gardens, and dinner for two – with a menu inspired by King Charles’s favourite food – before cocktails in the aforementioned bar.
Sleep Like a King package available May 1-10, from £1,300 including one night in a Regency suite, breakfast, dinner as above, bottle of sparkling wine and lounge access (0207 486 5800; londonchurchill.regency.hyatt.com)
One might expect something of a fanfare from the hotel often referred to as the “annexe of Buckingham Palace” and the offering doesn’t disappoint. Claridge’s archivist Kate Hudson has searched the hotel’s records to unveil some of its most memorable royal moments and treasures, which will be showcased on the ground floor of the hotel.
The display will focus on coronations over the past 200 years, with precious mementos including pages from Queen Victoria’s diary and menus created for the coronations of King George VI in 1937 and Queen Elizabeth II in 1953.
In addition, Claridge’s artist in residence David Downton will unveil a new colour portrait of King Charles III to sit in the hotel’s Talking Heads Gallery, while a unique botanical cocktail list inspired by King Charles’s Highgrove garden can be enjoyed in the hotel’s newest bar, the Painter’s Room.
Doubles from £840 not including breakfast (0207 629 8860; claridges.co.uk)
The Londoner, Leicester Square
This hotel really is the very definition of 'all the bells and whistles' and caused quite a stir when it opened in 2021. Partly due to its brazen architecture (the property goes underground by eight floors, which is why it's often referred to as 'the iceberg') and partly because of its bold design and fun, party-all-night vibe.
It makes sense then, that to mark the Coronation the hotel is transforming its buzzy bar, The Stage, into a pop-up martini bar from April 20 – May 18. The star of the show will be a take on the King's favourite pre-dinner cocktail, the classic martini, using ingredients such as Belvedere vodka, Noilly Prat Dry and Veuve Clicquot. The 'Homage' cocktail is also a lovely creative nod to the late Queen and her preferred tipple – a gin & Dubonnet.
Cocktails all priced at £18. Doubles from £450 a night including breakfast (0207 451 0101; thelondoner.com)
Great Scotland Yard Hotel, Covent Garden
An 1820s Grade II-listed building with Edwardian and Victorian architecture, the newly renovated Great Scotland Yard Hotel holds many hidden stories. As well as being the former headquarters of the Metropolitan Police and the site of the army recruitment drive in the First World War and Second World War, it was once home to HRH the King of Scotland back in 997.
Behind the redbrick facade, you’ll find quirky artworks depicting London iconography and a portrait wall with well-known royals sitting alongside infamous criminals. The location is perfect – it’s a short stroll down Parliament Street to the Houses of Parliament and Westminster Abbey, eyeing Big Ben as you go. For the Coronation, enjoy a “multi-sensory” afternoon tea in partnership with Royal Warrant-holder Floris London (there is also a dog version available), while the 40 Elephants cocktail bar has partnered with Hepple gin to create a King’s martini.
Doubles from £295 including breakfast. Afternoon tea from £59 per person (0207 925 4700; hyatt.com)
Mandarin Oriental, Hyde Park, Knightsbridge
The position of this much-loved grande dame is glorious: Hyde Park just behind for post-breakfast strolls and Harrods a two-minute walk down the road. Although it's regarded as reassuringly classic in its style, it has also been rigorously updating itself for the last century so the design and atmosphere always feels current. The hotel's façade will even be illuminated in a deep blue for the whole bank holiday weekend – the prime colour that has been chosen for King Charles’s Coronation emblem.
With a strong royal connection (King Charles used to have afternoon tea here often with his father and sister) the hotel is launching several lovely experiences to celebrate, including a walking tour of the King's favourite haunts, a special four-course Coronation menu at Dinner by Heston Blumenthal and, for the full-blown experience, a 'royal retreat' overnight package in a suite.
Psst... If you happen to simply be a passer-by over the weekend, you might just be offered a Coronation lollipop infused with vanilla and whiskey flavours and decorated with the King’s cypher.
The 'Royal Retreat' overnight package includes a stay in a suite with a caviar breakfast, a four-course lunch or dinner at Dinner by Heston Blumenthal, a curated Highgrove Hamper and a bottle of Laphroaig from £4,000. Doubles from £870 including breakfast (0207 235 2000; mandarinoriental.com)
London Marriott Hotel County Hall, South Bank
It’s hard to beat the location of the London Marriott County Hall, on the river with views of the London Eye and Houses of Parliament. It was opened in 1922 by King George V and Queen Mary as the headquarters of local government in London; the hotel has launched a tour for 2023 available for free to all guests delving into the building’s history.
You can also indulge in the Big Ben afternoon tea at the Library, which is home to more than 3,000 classic literary works including first editions. In May, the hotel will be launching a King Charles Scotch Whiskey cocktail – plus, anyone called Charles will receive a free cocktail when dining at Gillray’s Steakhouse & Bar over the bank holiday weekend.
Doubles from £787 including breakfast. Afternoon tea from £65 per person (0207 928 5200; marriott.co.uk)
The Guardsman, Westminster
This recently opened property is a clever mix of a boutique hotel (anybody can book one of its 53 rooms) with touches of a private members club (only hotel guests can dine at the fantastic restaurant, for example). It aims to be highly personalised; you can request your favourite brand of drinks, snacks and bathroom products, which will be prepared ready for your arrival, plus, it's literally on the doorstep of Buckingham Palace so ideal for jumping straight into the bank holiday party.
For the Coronation weekend, the hotel is offering a four-night stay with afternoon tea included (if it's nice weather the team will set this up in nearby St James's Park), plus, most notably a three-course dinner inspired by A Royal Cookbook, the first-ever cookery book to come from within the Royal Household, and written by the Royal Chef Mark Flanagan.
The New Guard package starts from £2,640 and includes a four-night stay in a Guardsman Room including breakfast, a 'Royally Good Afternoon Tea' and a 'Palatial Feast' (0207 309 9200; guardsmanhotel.com)
The Goring, Belgravia
The Goring is the closest luxury hotel to Buckingham Palace and the only London hotel with a Royal Warrant for hospitality services. Since 1910, every reigning monarch has walked through the hotel’s doors to enjoy its grand interior.
The Goring’s associations with King Charles III date back to 1948, when pastry chefs supplied a cake for his christening. Sadly the hotel is already full for the Coronation weekend, but to celebrate in May, a special Coronation afternoon tea will be served in the Veranda restaurant overlooking the Goring Garden and the “Royal Border” (home to a selection of the Royal family’s favourite plants and flowers).
The tea menu features King Charles’s favourite cakes and sandwiches, with produce from other Royal Warrant suppliers such as Dukeshill Ham, plus a glass of Bollinger champagne – hurry and book now as there's still some spots available for the bank holiday weekend. There’s also a Michelin-starred Coronation tasting menu focusing on Welsh specialities and foraged ingredients, in a nod to King Charles’s role as an environmentalist.
Doubles from £710 including breakfast. Afternoon tea from £75 per person. (0207 396 9000; thegoring.com)
De Vere Beaumont Estate, Windsor
Why not head to another royal hotspot, Windsor, to celebrate? The Coronation concert will be broadcast live at Windsor Castle, which is close to De Vere Beaumont Estate – a stately white Georgian mansion house set in 44 acres of lovely grounds with natural ponds, manicured gardens and unique sculptures to explore.
It’s a tranquil spot to relax and enjoy the occasion from a distance with a Coronation-themed afternoon tea, or head into Windsor proper to join the pomp. Newly refurbished suites are fit for a royal weekend, with roll-top bathtubs, Penhaligon’s toiletries (which have a Royal Warrant) and a Roberts radio to listen to the weekend’s events should you want to go old-school.
Coronation weekend package available May 6-8, from £334 including breakfast and afternoon tea (01753 640000; devere.co.uk)
Fairmont Windsor Park, Windsor
This is a newcomer to the Royal borough, opening to much excitement in January 2022. It's located right next to one of the main entrances of Windsor Great Park (named Bishopsgate) so is a fantastic spot for exploring this incredible green space where the late Queen herself loved to horse ride. The scale of the property, both in size and in sheer wow factor, is pretty hard to believe – in particular the 40 acres of preened grounds and the vast spa are extraordinarily smart.
Fairmont Windsor Park is going all out for the Coronation, hosting a garden party on the May 6 between 10.30am and 5:.0pm. Ticket holders will receive a picnic hamper of goodies and a huge screen will be broadcasting the event (as well as fun extras like live music and food stands serving sweet treats). There is also the option to book afternoon tea throughout the weekend in the opulent Orchid Tea Room; refreshingly, it's a family-friendly affair offering up an imaginative children's menu.
Tickets for the garden party from £150 per adult and £50 per child. Doubles including garden party tickets and breakfast from £829 (01784 535 555; fairmont-windsorpark.com)
The Mitre, Hampton Court
Head to Henry VIII’s old stomping ground to celebrate in a beautiful riverside setting. The Mitre is a colourful and character-filled boutique hotel perched on the Thames in pretty Hampton Court. Over the Coronation weekend, the hotel will be throwing a quintessential English garden party, with DJs, festive food and drinks for toasting on their (hopefully sun-kissed) riverside terrace.
A Coronation package also includes tickets to Hampton Court Palace, where you can delve into the world of Henry VIII and his wives, discover the spectacular baroque palace built for William III and Mary II, and explore 60 acres of magnificent gardens. The Palace will also be screening the Coronation.
Coronation weekend package from £590, including two nights, daily breakfast and one three-course dinner in the Boathouse or 1665 restaurant, plus tickets to Hampton Court Palace. (0208 979 9988; mitrehamptoncourt.com)
Further afield, but still only an hour from London, is Cliveden House, known of course for the Profumo affair but also with an illustrious royal history of entertaining every British monarch since King George I.
Built in 1666 by the second Duke of Buckingham, this Grade I-listed stately home set in 376 acres of grandiose National Trust grounds isn’t short of royal wow factor.
Guests can partake in a Great Royal Gardens afternoon tea, with a menu inspired by flowers that grow in the Kings’ Royal Gardens and savoury treats that use the finest products from Sandringham’s farm. Highlights include the Buckingham honey and cheddar eclair, Kensington poppy-seed cake and Sandringham magnolia cake.
Doubles from £785 including breakfast. Afternoon tea from £55 per person. (01628 668 561; clivedenhouse.co.uk)
Or why not head for a Gloucestershire getaway close to King Charles’s private residence of Highgrove? Throughout May, Whatley Manor Hotel & Spa is offering a two-night Fit for a King break.
Enjoy an afternoon tea served with quirky cocktails (try the marmalade martini named the Paddington) before continuing the indulgence with a suitably luxe gold and caviar spa treatment. Dinner is at the Michelin-starred Dining Room, where you’ll find innovative takes on classic British dishes.
Fit for a King Break available May 3-June 3, from £1,418 for two nights, including afternoon tea, dinner and spa treatment as above, bottle of Gusbourne English sparkling wine and breakfast. (01666 822 888; whatleymanor.com)
Availability correct at time of publishing