This Is What It's Like To Stay In The UK's Best Hotel
Spoiler alert: it's completely mad-amazing...
A day doesn't go by without the Travel industry decrying some new and ridiculous accolade or another.
"Check out Swanage's best voted boutique vegan ice cream shack!"
"You must visit Northampton's best-smelling homestay!"
So you can imagine our arched-eyebrow suspicion when we were informed that the 'Number 1 Hotel in the UK' had been announced.
And how our interest was peaked at where the accolade had come from - the 2018 TripAdvisor Travellers' Choice Awards.
If it's one thing that TripAdvisor reviewers understand, it's scathing reviews - so anything deemed great enough to warrant platitudes aplenty bodes very, very well.
We pootled on down to Hotel 41, situated right next to London's Victoria station, to test things out for ourselves.
Full disclaimer: it is 100% mad-amazing, and this is why...
It is gobsmackingly beautiful
Five star luxury comes in all shapes and sizes, but it's surprisingly tricky to nail refined opulence without coming off sterile or, well, snobby.
From the moment the doorman welcomes you through the gorgeously crafted wooden double-doors, you'll be hit round the head time and again with some of the most stylish looks this side of a literal palace.
The interior design is *kisses fingers*, with chequered black and white tiling complimenting the polished gloss of wooden pannelling throughout.
The Executive Lounge, where you'll retire to chill out in privacy (more on that later) is stuffed full of weathered globes and sparkling chandeliers, and screams Gentleman's Club excellence (without any of that pesky misogyny). Meanwhile, the bedrooms are resplendent with the finest linens, mood-setting soft lighting, your very own fireplace, and Antiques Roadshow-ready tables and chairs.
Live out your Philleas Fogg dreams
Dump your bags in your room, and head straight to the Executive Lounge, a chill-out haven where you're treated like a literal celebrity.
While you're busy gawping at the decor, the champagne trolly will be rolled over before you know it, ridiculously tasty canapes will be laid out before you, and you're left to soak up the 19th century dandy vibes.
Even better, there's a buffet bar that's free to raid at any time (more on that - specifically the ice cream fridge - later).
You're basically neighbours with the Queen
Sure, it's right next to a main London train station and underground, but the location goes far beyond mere convenience.
Overlooking the Royal Mews, it's a mere five minute walk to Buckingham Palace, and slap-bang in the middle of some of the most historic buildings in the capital.
It nails the attention to detail
We've waffled about the interior design, which is stuffed full of considered touches, but it's in the service that the hotel's ethos truly comes into play.
When you enter your room, your coats will already be hanging up in the wardrobe, there are truffles lined out at the end of the bed, and a hot water bottle nestled in your duvet awaiting your snuggling.
Venture out to the Executive Lounge, and you're free to raid a buffet bar with a huge, mouth-watering selection - including a whole fridge stuffed full of ice cream (free, obvs), and a Honesty Bar that allows you to pour a tipple at any time of the day (just write down what you've had, for charging when you check out, and away you go).
You will never want to leave the bathroom
Stay with us, we realise that sounds weird.
Not only is it gorgeous, but to say the shower made me see Jesus is not an understatement.
Midnight ice cream room service for Sir and Madam?
Retiring to the room for the evening, we spotted the too-tempting 'Whatever Whenever' button on the phone, and decided to test out the so-advertised exemplary service with a typically Diva-ish demand.
A quick ring to the front desk, and within minutes we had someone delivering pots of mouth-watering ice cream, straight to our beds.
Sitting in bed, wrapped up in a ridiculously fluffy dressing gown, eating hand-delivered free ice cream really is the epitome of living your best life.
Eat 'til you drop
With six dining options to choose from, each ranging from high-end Michelin-starred NOM to affordable (but still delectable) fare, the world is your oyster (metaphorically and practically).
We recommend the Bbar, a South African themed restaurant adjacent to the hotel, which offers an array of tasty, gamey dishes (Springbok fillet, Grilled Boerewors Sausages and Bobotie Spring Rolls, anyone?) to compliment the vibrant decor (ethnic carvings, photographs of big game = safari chic).
With over 110 wines, and over 60 cocktails to choose from, you won't go thirsty, either.
MTV Travelled With... Hotel 41, 41 Buckingham Palace Road, London, SW1W 0PS. You can find more info at www.41hotel.com and on 020 7300 0041. Double rooms at the five star hotel are priced from £334 per room per night.