London is an enormous, dynamic, hyperactive and multi-cultural metropolis. Founded more than 2,000 years ago by the Romans on the banks of the Thames, the city has never stopped expanding. The most highly populated city in the 19th century, it now numbers more than seven million inhabitants representing more than 50 nationalities speaking about 300 different languages.
As a capital of the arts and fashion, in the same vein as Paris or New York, the city has a huge number of museums and galleries including the British Museum and the National Gallery as well as symbolic monuments famous throughout the world like the Houses of Parliament,
Tower Bridge, the Tower of London, Westminster Abbey, with its celebrated Big Ben, and Buckingham Palace, the residence of the royal family. Visitors come to London for shopping, sightseeing, for strolling along the banks of the Thames and to discover the unique and legendary “English spirit.”
Not far from King’s Cross, in the north of the city, on a quiet street facing the international train station, the Rough Luxe does not look like any other London hotel although it’s no less typically English than most others. Rough luxe here represents a form of aristocratic nonchalance that consists of letting one’s possessions grow old and dilapidated because, “one has so much money that there’s no need to show it off.» A rough luxe hotel is therefore a luxury hotel that doesn’t abide by the usual codes.
Located in a Georgian style residence, the Rough Luxe has the appearance of a cross between an artistic structure and a boutique hotel.
Redesigned by the London architect and decorator, Rabih Hage, the hotel, from the entrance onward, is a blend of modern art works and luxury furniture in a décor with cracking paint on the walls, half erased frescoes and torn wallpaper. We discover the history of the building behind the successive layers of worn out decorations. We get the feeling of being in the house of a poor family or the forgotten residence of a negligent millionaire. Imperfection is cultivated to the extreme here.
Each of the nine rooms is in a different style although they all have the same atmosphere of rundown luxury. Used and broken down furniture contrast with contemporary works of art. Dilapidated walls surround refined fabrics. Visible electric wires and hastily painted floors exist side by side with soft quilts, warm cushions and sumptuous linen sheets. Each piece is unique, like this immense couch covered with fine fabrics and which takes up almost the entire room.
Most of the old furniture comes from the Hotel Savoy before it was renovated. The majority of the rooms have a huge photograph of the interior of the Massimo Listri palace, creating the illusion of space and opulence. Contemporary works of art include those by Japanese artist, Aki Kuroda and the renowned duo of Gilbert and George.
In the room named after Philippe Starck, there’s a superb photo of the French designer. There are no flat screens here, only vintage 1980 TV sets. On the contrary, the rainfall showers and an extremely deep copper bathtub bear witness to an ageless luxury.
Beyond the design effects that play with the concept of true and false wear and tear of the material, we find luxury, comfort and a typically British idea of service.
The Rough Luxe has no suites although the rooms can be put together to form one, and on the top floor, there’s an “upscale” room decorated in ruby red.
In this hotel with an almost boarding house atmosphere, there’s no restaurant. Breakfast is served on a huge wooden table recovered from the jetty at Brighton. The hotel however, does have a small spa and a warm comfortable library with numerous books available to guests.
The combination of genres and this rough version of authentic luxury make the Rough Luxe Hotel one of the most unusual and trendy places in London.
4 stars / Boutique hotel / Luxury/ Unusual / Chic / Design / Trendy / Hype / Breakfast served in the room, on the terrace or in the courtyard during the summer / Café-bar / Spa proposing massages and treatments /Rainwater type showers /Library / Babysitting service / Shuttle service / Bicycle trips/ Pets welcome.
Open all year round
Double room from230 €
London City (LCY) Newham
London International Airport Heathrow (LHR) Hillingdton
London Biggin Hill International Airport (BQH) - Westerham
Rough Luxe Hotel
1 Birkenhead Street
London WC1H 8BA
Approximately 1 hour
- 1 hour all year round
Generally cool ocean type climate
Valid passport or National ID card
No vaccinations required
The pound sterling (GBP)
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Sally Shalam, a reporter for the celebrated British daily, The Guardian sums up the term, “rough luxe” in the following manner: “It’s when you have so much money that you don’t need to show it off. It’s a form of aristocratic nonchalance which consists of letting what you possess get old and deteriorate.”
Book by phone
+33 1 75 43 70 26 *Our reservation department is always happy to assist you via phone or via email. We are open Monday to Friday 9am to 18pm (GMT +1).