The proximity of city breaks in Europe is one of the joys of living in the UK, and there are so many new hotels in European cities to choose from. Whether you fancy a classic Paris jaunt or a trip to uber cool Lisbon, here are our top pics of the chic new hotels in European cities.
Chic New Hotels In European Cities
Bulgari Hotel – Paris
The long-awaited Parisian outpost of the Bulgari group arrived in the capital in December, making front-page news as it did. The trademark minimalism, courtesy of Italian architectural studio Antonio Citterio Patricia Viel, comes in a mix of muted, earthy colours shot through with warm tones, something the London hotel lacks. Paying homage to the undisputed excellence of Italian craftsmanship, ceramics from Gio Ponti jostle with silk carpets from Altai of Milan. Overlaying all is the Bulgari brand; expect its cashmere throw on the bed and the Serpenti motif illuminated above the bath tub. Undoubtedly the suite to book this summer will be its penthouse. Vast marble-clad interiors take up the top two floors of the hotel and open out onto almost 600sq/m of lush rooftop garden complete with lemon trees and, of course, views of the Eiffel Tower. As in all Bulgari hotels, talented Italian chef Niko Romito is in charge of the restaurant. Try the fresh spinach and ricotta tortelli with butter and sage. Worth the journey alone.
BOOK IT: Doubles from €1,400. bulgarihotels.com
Mama Lisboa – Lisbon
Close to the famous Avenida da Liberdade, Mama Shelter arrived in Lisbon earlier this year, with a playful and edgy new hotel. There are 130 rooms with an focus on comfort, authenticity and cutting-edge design. Highlights include an all-day restaurant with its interior terrace and the brick oven pizzeria for locals to take away Mama’s famous pizzas. The rooftop offers a dining destination with a bird’s-eye view of Lisbon and the Tagus.
BOOK IT: mamashelter.com
The Carlton Tower Jumeirah – London
While the rest of the world hibernated from Covid, a quiet transformation was happening in the heart of Knightsbridge. The Carlton Tower, located on Sloane Street with views over Cadogan Gardens, first opened in 1961 and became London’s first tower hotel. In 2020, it was shut for 18 months to undergo a £100m transformation into a hotel suitable for the latest generation of international travellers. Quiet luxury oozes from every pore of the new-look hotel, from the marble-lined lobby with its glittering Lasvit chandelier to the sophisticated rooms and suites designed by 1508 London. There’s a new health club and spa with London’s largest naturally lit swimming pool, where you can lounge before enjoying a massage with Aromatherapy Associates essential oils. Downstairs, there’s The Chinoiserie restaurant for all-day dining and afternoon tea, plus Al Mare, the hotel’s new destination restaurant. Italian in theme, it’s headed by Executive Chef Marco Calenzo and offers a menu of crowd-pleasing favourites like white truffle tagliarini and arancini.
BOOK IT: Rooms from £675. jumeirah.com
Mandarin Oriental Ritz – Madrid
Madrid’s grande dame, the Ritz, opened by César Ritz himself in 1910, has never looked so good. Dazzlingly fresh from an impressive makeover by French design studio Gilles & Boissier it is now part of the Mandarin Oriental group, which has spared no expense in re-opening this Belle Époque jewel for the glamorous Madrileños who have long frequented it. Woven throughout the unashamedly luxurious interiors are nods to Madrid’s rich artistic heritage – the fragmented mirror in the Palm Court is a contemporary echo of Velázquez’s mirror in Las Meninas – lending to the whole a real sense of place. Food seamlessly follows suit. All restaurants are under the helm of Spanish chef Quique Dacosta, whose contemporary cuisine is best tried at gourmet restaurant Deessa. There, beneath gilded ceilings and glittering chandeliers, feast on plates of smoked eel and chilli soup or turbot in sherry sauce. Swim it all off in the city’s prettiest swimming pool, where lights in the ceiling mimic stars and constellations of the night sky.
BOOK IT: Doubles from €600. mandarinoriental.com
The Ivens – Lisbon
Named after the 19th-century Portuguese explorer, Roberto Ivens, this charming hotel sits in Lisbon’s elegant Chiado district and marks the debut of the Autograph Collection in the capital. Club-like interiors mix atmospheric dim lamps and velvet armchairs with beetles and maps, magnifying glasses and tropical plants, prints of macaws and shelves of curiosities, creating rich surroundings for visitors to explore – albeit more modest than those along Ivens’ adventures between the lakes of Zaire and the Zambezi river in Africa. The hotel’s 87 bedrooms are pared down by comparison, despite the occasional elephant head and ceiling of leafy fronds, offering tranquility alongside Jo Malone amenities and shower-only bathrooms. Three food outlets, all designed by Lázaro Rosa-Violán, are the new hot-spots in town. Rocco offers traditional Neapolitan fare (try the aubergine alla parmigiana) and a leafy terrace that will come into its own in summer. The seductive Gastro Bar with its marble counter and mirrored ceiling has regular DJ spots, while Crudo Bar offers all the bounty from the Portuguese seas.
BOOK IT: Doubles from €410. marriott.com
25hours Hotel Piazza San Paolino – Florence
For an Italian getaway with a whacky Medieval twist, try 25hours Hotel Piazza San Paolino. On exactly the 700th anniversary of the death of Dante Alighieri, the hotel welcomed its first guests. Designed playfully by Paola Navone around the Italian poet and philosopher Dante’s Divine Comedy, the hotel’s centrepiece is its San Paolino restaurant in the historical palazzo, serving Italian food with a focus on Tuscan produce. There’s also a courtyard garden, Negroni bar, and a grocery store for the neighbourhood, ensuring all guests can ‘come as you are’ and enjoy the hotel.
The Madrid EDITION – Madrid
The EDITION brand launched its newest hotel in Spain’s capital earlier this year in March. Promising to encapsulate Madrid’s ‘beguiling individuality and essence’, the hotel will be the city’s first luxury lifestyle urban resort. Characterised by understated elegance and bursting with natural light, The Madrid EDITION will boast two restaurants, three bar concepts, a rooftop pool with stunning views, a wellness and spa facilities, meeting and event spaces, as well as exciting nightlife and entertainment. Located in the vibrant heart of Madrid, positioned on one of Madrid’s finest piazzas and just a stone’s throw from Kilometre Zero, this exciting new hotel promises to be a buzzing hub for congregating, culture and cuisine.
BOOK IT: editionhotels.com
Rosewood Vienna – Vienna
Housed in the former headquarters for Erste Group Bank AG, Rosewood Vienna will be situated on Petersplatz, one of the most famous squares in Vienna’s Old Town. Located just steps from the city’s best luxury shopping and dining plus its most famous historical sites, Rosewood Vienna is sure to become a city hub, with 99 spacious guest rooms and suites, a Rosewood Spa with stunning views of St. Peter’s church, a variety of dining options including a rooftop bar with exceptional city views and a vibrant restaurant with a terrace garden serving European cuisine.
BOOK IT: rosewoodhotels.com
The Emerald House – Lisbon
Lisbon continues to be one of Europe’s must-visit destinations thanks to its year-round sun, culture, beaches and more. The Curio Collection by Hilton opened its first Lisbon outpost earlier this year, with The Emerald House Lisbon, featuring stunning views of the River Tagus and the city. Check into the Emerald Suite to really make the most of these, before heading out into the city to explore the hills on foot… Or one of the historic trams once your legs get tired.
BOOK IT: hilton.com
Featured Image: The view from the Bulgari Paris penthouse gardens