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REVIEW: The Mandeville Hotel, London

REVIEW: The Mandeville Hotel, London

The Mandeville's collaboration with Maison Christian Lacroix has resulted in some truly funky interiors

For a generation of fashion and pop culture junkies, the name Christian Lacroix is synonymous with Edina Monsoon.

Famously, he was the favoured designer of Absolutely Fabulous’ Eddy in the 1990s. (The fashion victim and her BFF Patsy recently returned for this year’s critically-praised movie).

In fact the style icon – who has spoken of his bisexuality and marriage to Françoise Rosenthiel in the past – even cameoed in the 1995 Ab Fab special The Last Shout, proving he’s a great sport.

I recently got to indulge my inner Eddy by spending the night at The Mandeville Hotel in Marylebone, near London’s Bond Street: one of the loveliest boutique properties in central London.

5th-Floor-entrance

The entire fifth floor has been redone in a bold collaboration with Maison Christian Lacroix, in homage to the French Rivera.

In the best possible way, it’s like stepping into Eddy’s dream home. I’ve walked down so many nondescript hotel corridors, but floor five of the Mandeville pops. Think statement furniture, curious patterns and textured animals print. It’s such a refreshing change.

My spacious, comfortable room was named ’Jardin Exotique’, and takes inspiration from Monaco’s Botanical Gardens. It was an explosion of daring colour and style. Once I got used to it, I even adored the acid green leaf motif on the walls.

Jardin-Exotique

My bathroom boasted two showers, and was sparklingly clean. My only criticism? The smallest of wet patches on the floor upon my arrival.

Elsewhere, the highlight of my stay was in fact my meal at the hotel’s own Reform Social & Grill. Moreover, theirs is my favourite menu of the year so far; it’s crammed with comforting and reasonably-priced British classics.

There are creative embellishments, but nothing absurd that compromises the traditional edge. It’s fitting the restaurant opened in 2012, the year of the London Olympics and one of great national pride.

5---Reform-Social-&-Grill

The interior looks like a lavish country manor, which pleasantly jarred with the style of my room. I found it warm and inviting, although my guest complained of harsh lighting and asked to move tables.

Shepherd’s Pie, fish and chips, a pork chop with bubble and squeak, a Cornish yard and beef pastie, plus a range of sweet and savoury Yorkshire puddings all feature. I’ve since heard about the Yorkshire pudding burger, which I’m desperate to try.

For starters we’d recommend the smoked salmon Scotch egg, together with hollandaise and asparagus soldiers. The saltiness of the salmon works with the egg and the course coating. It was a lighter alternative to a ‘proper’ Scotch egg, made with pork. Especially considering what was coming.

toad_hole

For my main I compulsively ordered the Toad in the Hole: a much-loved but oft-overlooked English dish. Pork sausages baked in a pancake-like batter, served with gravy: a simple sort of perfection, really.

This was the first time I’ve had the dish since school. It’s the first time I’ve seen it available at a vaguely formal London restaurant (as opposed to a pub). It was absolutely a trip down memory lane, and very filling. My guest ordered the rib eye steak and had no complaints. I also had a mouthful and it was wonderfully soft.

For dessert, we shared a fresh, light serving of Eton Mess and a decedent, rich slice of double chocolate cake. We enjoyed them both, but our first choice – the iconic treacle sponge with custard – was unfortunately available.

1---Exterior-day

The food was excellent in its entirety, including the full English breakfast the next morning (yes, more sausages).

Additionally, the waiting staff were kindly and efficient, as were the ladies on reception.

Overall I left with an extremely positive impression of the hotel, feeling as overindulged as my favourite TV show PR, Ms. Monsoon.

For more information about the Mandeville Hotel and the Reform Social & Grill, visit the official website by clicking here.