Four seasons in England

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Four Seasons regulars around the world are somewhat reassuringly familiar. Whether on the coast of Mauritius, a peninsula in Costa Rica or on the Bosporus in Istanbul. There’s the same stamp of great opulence along with a telepathic service. You surely know how to create luxurious spaces that are fun and glamorous. As for England, whether in the heart of London or deep in the Hampshire countryside, the standard is constant.

Spa Sky Suite on London’s Park Lane. Photo courtesy Four Seasons

With best regards im Hotel on Park Lane I knew from a stylish, learned and humorous man at the reception that I was going to have a truly inspired stay. Park Lane is adjacent to Mayfair and are the two most expensive properties on a Monopoly board. For most tourists, Buckingham Palace, home of the Queen, is the main local attraction, while discerning shoppers love Fortnum and Mason, the suppliers of all kinds of goodies and delicacies and historians would go to Apsley House (with its address ‘Number 1 London’ ) the home of the Duke of Wellington, who freed Napoleon at the Battle of Waterloo. And of course there is Hyde Park, London’s central artery of green and serenity, where, if you are lucky, you can see the cavalry in their silver feather helmets hop up and down on their scaffolding in their glossiest cloaks.

Park Suite on London's Park Lane
Park suite on London’s Park Lane. Photo courtesy Four Seasons Park Lane

The interior of the hotel has been curated very stylishly. As I stepped off the elevator on the first floor, I was enjoying the pictures of horses and looking down at the spectacular and breathtaking chandelier that lights up the foyer. It’s a stunning centerpiece made of crystals with its shards of reflected light that offset the white reliefs on the walls. Such a sharp awakening for all of my senses. In the dining area there are vases with faces by Fornasetti, artifacts in the niches and a sculpture of clasped hands by Lorenzo Quinn, son of actor Anthony Quinn, which powerfully expresses the human bond. There is an impressive wine cellar, and two giant crystals create amazing energy in the private zebra-style dining room.

Amaranto Terrace in London on Park Lane
Amaranto Terrace in Park Lane London. Photo courtesy Four Seasons Park Lane

My room on the ninth floor overlooked Hyde Park Corner, the buzz of London’s red buses and black cabs. I sat in my Eames-inspired lounge chair between a selection of Assouline books, lacquered sliding doors, and walls with framed black and white photos. The room was decorated with beautiful artifacts and the lacquered wood was balanced by the calm silver-blue furniture with a decor in soothing neutral colors and a bathroom scent rich in Bulgari products.

Amaranto Lounge on Park Lane, London
Amaranto Lounge on Park Lane, London. Photo courtesy Four Seasons Park Lane

I had a real treat in the Amaranto, the hotel’s modern, international restaurant. It’s so spacious on its marble floor from room to room full of people sharing joyful moments while enjoying fine dining from a menu that offers world-famous luxuries like Dom Perignon p2 2002 champagne as well as Royal Beluga Caviar with its light to dark gray creamy Texture next to Vietnamese king prawn, Italian burrata, octopus and lobster.

Hampshire Four Season
Hampshire four seasons. Courtesy Four Seasons

And then for my country visit, an effortless hour outside of London, just off the M3 that I came to Four Seasons Hotel Hampshire. Set in rolling hills, this hotel is a combination of a restored 18th century Georgian mansion. Old bricks blend in with new bricks, and this is where Henry VIII met Catherine of Aragon for the first time, the first of his six wives.

Four Seasons Hampshire
Four Seasons Hampshire. Courtesy Four Seasons

I took a bike ride and later a walk on neatly mowed grass paths where picnic benches were scattered in picturesque locations in the hotel’s 500 acres of parkland. The grounds featured imposing sculptures of a hare, deer, rabbit, wild boar and a Labrador from the nearby Farnham Sculpture Park. Great in daylight and spectacular when lit up at night. The old vegetable garden walls and the high trimmed hedges opposite enclosed a lovely flower garden, and croquet, tennis and horse riding were offered in harmony with an estate.

Four Seasons Hampshire
Four Seasons Hampshire. Courtesy Four Seasons

What I liked about the interior design was the ambiance: a mix of beautiful, plush, traditional antique carpets with curved stairs that were lit to highlight their organic stone colored steps. It took me to many different scenes with the color scheme of the decor naturally echoing through the windows. I loved the cozy drawing room with wood paneling and fireplace, the floral centerpieces, and the grand piano that dominates the aisle.

Hampshire Four Seasons
Hampshire four seasons. Courtesy Four Seasons

My room was lavish with its stunning shell light in the center; the soothing sage green of the walls, set off by mustard-colored curtains; the older, newly upholstered furniture and teal teal leather seats and fancy retractable reading lights, and my bathroom had colored marble floors and Asprey products.

Carrot Restaurant in the Hampshire Four Seasons.
Carrot Restaurant in the Hampshire Four Seasons. Courtesy Four Seasons

Wild Carrot, the hotel’s flagship restaurant, offered me exquisite fine dining. I went down a flight of stairs into a large, open room with parquet flooring and eight massive French windows with a view of the hills. Eclectic art and leather seats, some free-standing, others in horseshoe benches, have been adorned with vibrant green foliage and cast-iron lighting. I made a good choice from the stylish menu: especially enjoy the British pea soup with confit shallots, crème fraiche and herbal oil. The neighboring Wild Carrot Bar had a gentleman’s club feel, with little nooks for intimacy amid lush textures of red leather seats and velvets in green, mustard, blush, and teal.

Hampshire Four Seasons swimming pool
Hampshire Four Seasons swimming pool. Courtesy Four Seasons

One of the real advantages of this hotel over the old stables that surround a beautiful paved courtyard is the heavenly length, warm temperature and glass ceiling of the swimming pool. It leads seductively from inside to the vitality pool outside, in which the latest jets and whirlpools drummed on my muscles, while I looked up to the sky outside, to the dancing swallows by day and the stars by night.

Ten Trinity Square is another branch of the Four Seasons Hotels and located in the financial district, and the three hotels share a Scenic Route service where you travel along the River Thames between the two London hotels, past Big Ben, the Houses of Parliament and the Tower of London before hitting the Royal Enjoy Botanic Gardens then arrive in Hampshire from where you can visit Highclere Castle, the famous setting for Downton Abbey and the lovely Chawton cottage where Jane Austen wrote her novels. Whether regional or seasonal, this hotel chain lives in England.


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