The Park Plaza Sherlock Holmes Hotel

Mimi ON Jan 19, 2010 AT 5:25 pm

The Sherlock Holmes Park Plaza Hotel

The Sherlock Holmes Park Plaza Hotel

By Tamara Hinson

As soon as I set foot in central London I seem to lose all sense of direction, which is why it was definitely a relief to find that the Park Plaza Sherlock Holmes is located just a few hundred metres from Baker Street station. So, even if you don’t possess the detective skills of the hotel’s namesake you really can’t go wrong. Stepping into the warmth of the hotel lobby, the immediate impression is one of cosy luxury; and, with its stripped wooden floor and comfy seating, the place feels undeniably stylish but most of all, homely – a rare commodity for a city centre hotel. Comprising two 18th century houses with 119 rooms spread out over five floors, the Park Plaza Sherlock Holmes seeps with history and nods to the great detective are everywhere; from the artwork depicting the man himself to murder mystery nights held by the hotel.

The room we stayed in was surprisingly large, with a huge walk-in wardrobe, bathroom and seating area, but it was definitely the little touches that impressed me the most. I find hotels in the UK are less inclined to do the complimentary water thing like those abroad, and when they do, it’s normally in short supply, so it made a nice change to find several large bottles of bottled water in our room. I also loved the unusually generous supply of Molton Brown toiletries and the wide selection of magazines laid out for our perusal.

A bedroom at the hotel

A bedroom at the hotel

After a few hours crashed out in front of the huge TV, it was time for dinner at the hotel’s restaurant – Sherlock’s Bar and Grill. Before I begin, I’ll come right out and say that this was one of those meals that you know will be the marker for all future dining experiences. There wasn’t one thing on the menu that we didn’t want to try. After much deliberation, my boyfriend decided to start with the grilled king scallops with sweet and sour seaweed leaves, which he said was delicious – declaring that the scallops were cooked to perfection – while I went for salmon on wholegrain bread. I love salmon, but often find that, when ordering it in restaurants, portion sizes are depressingly small, but this certainly wasn’t the case here and I was presented with a plate piled high with some of the freshest salmon I’ve tasted.

Sherlock’s Bar and Grill

Sherlock’s Bar and Grill

For the main course, my boyfriend chose the roast gressingham duck breast, with banana shallot confit, potato champs and red wine jus, while I opted for the Devon corn-fed chicken breast with leek and truffle fricassee and a ceps mushroom jus. My boyfriend loved his dish – especially the sauce – and my chicken was just as impressive. The mushroom jus was bursting with flavour, and the chicken was deliciously succulent.

Then it was time for desert. Despite being tempted by the blueberry and vanilla cheesecake, we eventually opted for the triple chocolate mousse. As fans of chocolate mousse, my boyfriend and I have tried more variants of the dish than we care to remember, but this was by far the best we’d come across, consisting of three types – white, milk and dark – perfectly presented in individual dishes. The mousse was of the perfect consistency, tasted divine and was just enough to leave us deliciously satisfied without either filling us up or wishing we’d ordered an extra helping – and believe me, this isn’t something unheard of where my boyfriend’s concerned.

Sherlock Holmes Loft Suite

Sherlock Holmes Loft Suite

That night, we went to bed full and happy, although admittedly resigned to the fact that we doubted we’d ever experience chocolate mousse of the same calibre again. The next morning, we rose early. Breakfast was an extravagant affair, with a wide range of hot food alongside cereals, fruit, cheese, ham and yoghurt, and as we headed for home, we both agreed that the Sherlock Holmes hotel is definitely our new favourite “pied a terre” for weekends in the big smoke. It’s luxuriously cosy, perfectly located and run by people who really care for their guests. Oh, and just in case I didn’t mention, the restaurant also does the best chocolate mousse in the world.

Factbox:
Website:
www.parkplazasherlockholmes.com
Address: Park Plaza Sherlock Holmes
108 Baker Street
London, W1U 6LJ
United Kingdom
Rates: Rooms at the hotel start from £99.00

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