Take 2 neighbouring Georgian residences in Soho, transform them into a hotel and restaurant and what do you get? One off my favourite places to eat in the capital that’s what! The Dean Street Townhouse hotel is situated, not surprisingly, on Dean Street and numbers 69 and 70 have got one of those fabulous histories that you cannot help be fascinated by as you look back over how the buildings have evolved from when they were first built in the 1730’s up to the present day.
A carpenter named John Mead built the residences and many an aristocratic family made their home here, including the second most famous royal mistress Nell Gwynne, the orange selling squeeze of Charles ll. The area was then known as Soho Fields and become a haunt of the city’s artistic set including such illustrious names as the painter William Hogarth. David Tennant, the aristocrat and socialite not ex Dr Who, founded his Gargoyle Club on the uppermost floors of no.69 in 1928 and it fast became one of the major hangouts for the likes of Fred Astaire, Noël Coward, Tallulah Bankhead and Fred Astaire.
It’s lavish decoration and decadence couldn’t save it from falling into decline in the 50’s although it struggled on as drinking den frequents by such artists as Lucien Freud and Francis Bacon. It enjoyed a last hiatus in 1979 when was taken over by the Comedy Store and it’s basement became popular with the then next generation of British music makers. In 2008 Soho House took over both no.69 and 70 and the following year Dean Street Townhouse opened its doors the following year.
As you all know I love to find bolt holes which are antidotes to my usual life and this hotel ticks all my boxes. There is a tangible calmness from the moment you enter and the muted volume of conversation is akin to a gentlemen’s club from days gone by. The décor is traditional yet stylish, and while it is nowhere near as elaborate as it was in years gone by you sense from the grandeur of the architecture and original features what it must have been like in its halcyon days.
You have probably already guessed by the fact I’ve already stated it’s a favourite of mine that the food is sublime. Whatever time of day you go you have a choice of fine British fare cooked to the highest possible standard. I particularly like their theatre menu on those rare occasions we have a baby sitter for long enough to take in a show AND eat!


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