An Inspector Calls… A review of London’s Belmond Cadogan Hotel

An Inspector Calls… London’s Belmond Cadogan Hotel is full of ‘hope and expectation’ following a multi-million pound renovation

  • The Belmond Cadogan Hotel has reopened after its £39 million refurbishment
  • Located on Sloane Street in Chelsea, the cheapest room will set you back £470
  • The decor is stylish and modern but ‘respectful of the building’s heritage’

The scaffolding finally has come down to reveal the brand new £39 million Belmond Cadogan Hotel on Sloane Street.

If you’re passing, make a point of looking in. Greet the handsome doorman in his red tunic, then stand in the lobby and admire the mosaic floor, the art, the polished wooden staircase, the dresses of the receptionists, the light flooding through the windows, the (faux) sprigs of blossom.

You will see the pretty tea room in front of you, where breakfast is served, and you will want to stay the night. The only drawback is the price, with rooms starting at £470. Throw in dinner and a few drinks, and two of you won’t leave without spending close to £600.

The brand new £39 million Belmond Cadogan Hotel on Sloane Street, pictured above 

Americans with money will adore it, and wealthy couples coming in to London from the country will feel perfectly at home.

And if you don’t want anyone to know you are here, then an unmarked entrance at the back of the building will do the job.

Such an entrance would have come in handy when the Prince of Wales (later to become Edward VII) visited his mistress Lillie Langtry, the American actress and socialite, who lived in the hotel in the late 1870s. A few of her leather suitcases are displayed in the lobby.

We’ve booked the cheapest room — and miraculously are upgraded to a beautiful suite overlooking Pont Street. It’s stylish and modern but respectful of the building’s heritage, with cornices picked out in creamy white paint.

Above the bed is an intriguing and restful abstract painting. Books have been selected by the local bookshop, John Sandoe, and the lotions come from nearby Bamford’s. The marble bathroom is huge, with a TV in a wall near the free-standing bath. The telly doesn’t work, but we’re not bothered.

What does concern us are the fake books near the lifts on the ground floor, the slow service in the bar and the price of a wagyu steak — £44. And why does everything have to be such a performance?

Luxury: One of thebedrooms at the hotel (above). The cheapest room available costs £470

Luxury: One of thebedrooms at the hotel (above). The cheapest room available costs £470

We want a couple of drinks fast and ask for them at the bar, only to be told that someone will come to take our order.

Adam Handling is the chef-patron. You walk past his open kitchen to get to the restaurant. 

The food is fussy, clearly intended to catch the eye of the Michelin inspectors. But the atmosphere is buzzy and full of hope and expectation, just as it should be after so long behind those construction boards. 


The Belmond Cadogan, 75 Sloane St, London, SW1X 9SG. Doubles from £470. For more information call 020 7048 7141 or visit