The best London hotels with river views

Advice

What could be better than a room with a river view? The River Thames is one of the most famous rivers in the world and still very much the life-blood of the city. It winds through London, providing the backdrop for iconic landmarks like The London Eye, Big Ben and Tower Bridge. Meanwhile The South Bank is a world-class cultural hub, with the National Theatre, Tate Modern and Royal Festival Hall calling it home. Londoners and tourists alike love to meander the walk-ways, especially at the weekend, enjoying the markets, street food and entertainment always on offer. But it’s not just hotels on the Thames in Central London that steal all of the wow factor. There’s other London suburbs that house some beautiful under-the-radar riverside properties. Here’s our pick of the best London hotels with river views.

Sea Containers London

South Bank, London, England

8
Telegraph expert rating

The view, the view! London and its river glitter outside: the panorama from the Rooftop Bar rivals Manhattan or Hong Kong. A shifting cast of cyclists, skaters and commuters on the Thames Path passes as you eat and the tide rises and falls under riverside rooms. Designer Tom Dixon has had fun with the hotel: a vast, copper-bottomed ship’s hull ploughs straight through the building to the river and peering out of one side are the reception staff, clad in baby-blue 2001 Space Odyssey-style sweatshirts by the stylist Karen Langley. As for facilities, the in-house Curzon cinema, accessed through the lobby, is a great touch, with its brass rails, vintage popcorn cart and sinking velvet seats.


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From


£
262

per night

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Shangri-La at The Shard

London Bridge, London, England

9
Telegraph expert rating

You can’t get a hotel room much closer to the clouds. Nor one with much better bird’s-eye views of the River Thames. The Shangri-La is located on floors 34 to 52 of Renzo Piano’s Shard. At 1,016ft, it’s the tallest building in Western Europe, made up of 11,000 glass panels (which do not touch, allowing the building to ‘breathe’). Head to Tang restaurant to feast on a British-meets-European tasting menu whilst watching the sun set over the water. An added bonus is the amenity of binoculars, from which you can survey the streets of London from bed or bath – there’s something particularly fascinating about watching commuters cross bridges, builders scale heights and boats floating down the river from your tucked-away stance.


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From


£
589

per night

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London Marriott Hotel County Hall

South Bank, London, England

8
Telegraph expert rating

Opened in 1922, County Hall sits on the south bank of the Thames next to Westminster Bridge. For 64 years it served as the monumental headquarters of the London County Council. It is just a stroll away from many top London attractions including the London Eye and Houses of Parliament. Being a landmark listed building, the hotel has an engaging historic character. There is a sixth-floor spa and health club with a 25-metre indoor pool adorned with artificial palm trees. Many of the rooms look out towards the river or the London Eye and a few have balconies – and you’ll awake to the chimes of Big Ben.


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£
308

per night

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ME London

Covent Garden, London, England

8
Telegraph expert rating

The superstar here is 10th-floor Radio rooftop bar, with its rip-roaring views of the river and beyond; terrace of sleek seating; and glass-covered interior should the weather play up. The lobby is also one of the most striking in London — a 100-foot-high hollow, white, marble pyramid with roving light show across its three walls. The shops of Covent Garden and theatres of Drury Lane lie on one side; the river to the other. The shape of the hotel means most rooms have either one of these views; those at the front of its triangular structure have both.


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£
387

per night

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The Mitre Hotel

East Molesey, England

9
Telegraph expert rating

The most coveted London hotels on the Thames aren’t all centrally located, head out on the train to Hampton Court and you’ll find The Mitre, a 36-bedroom Grade II listed boutique property where people queue to hitch their rowing boats/canoes/ SUP boards in the summer to sit on its elegant terrace. Indoors, request a table in the 1665 restaurant in the riverside rotunda (the circular part of the building gracefully poised over the water) where brand new chef Paul Mason has been welcomed into the fold. Expect comfort dishes like baked camembert, French onion soup and meaty terrines to be served alongside more surprising options like the chili cauliflower popcorn (so moreish people often order it twice) and a delicate Goan seafood curry.


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£
170

per night

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The Royal Horseguards

Charing Cross, London, England

8
Telegraph expert rating

Rooms at this legendary hotel sandwiched between Whitehall and the Thames have views of the Thames and the London Eye from the upper floors. If that’s not enough of a reason to book here, then perhaps its AA Rosette French-meets-British restaurant or fascinating history (it housed the original Scotland Yard and hosted secret service meetings during the two world wars) will be. To really push the boat out, the spectacular top-floor Tower Suite with views over the South Bank is a must for New Year’s Eve celebrations.


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£
269

per night

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The Savoy

Covent Garden, London, England

9
Telegraph expert rating

One of the best five-star hotels on the Thames in London, the Art Deco Savoy is set back from the busy Strand. Anyone with something to celebrate should request one of the river-facing rooms (bear in mind that trees mask the river view from lower rooms). The night-time views of the South Bank, from the London Eye to the National Theatre, with the neon-washed Thames lapping at its edge are some of the best in the city. No river views from the restaurants or bar, but Kaspar’s is one of London’s most celebrated establishments for local seafood, from Jersey rock oysters to lobster from the Isle of Skye.


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£
652

per night

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Corinthia Hotel London

Charing Cross, London, England

8
Telegraph expert rating

Some of the rooms at this restful five-star pad have river views. If you have the means, book the River Suite, with its 180-degree vistas of the Thames and London Eye. Another highlight is the magnificent four-floor spa with ESPA treatments and dazzlingly indulgent relaxation areas. It’s definitely one of the best and most pleasingly designed hotel spas in London, with acres of black marble and mosaics, hydrotherapy and swimming pools. Otherwise, prepare yourself for fabulous chandeliers, intriguing modern art, palatial public rooms, a Daniel Galvin hair salon, and even a mini-branch of Harrods.


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£
1,176

per night

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Bingham Riverhouse

Richmond, London, England

9
Telegraph expert rating

A couple of the best London hotels with river views aren’t actually in the city, but further out along the suburban banks. Bingham Riverhouse, downstream westward from central London, is positioned right between leafy Richmond and Petersham. The garden (pictured) has a wrought iron gate onto the towpath and all day long curious onlookers linger as they walk slowly past to catch a glimpse of the handsome property. No two rooms are the same and they are each named after Michael Field’s poems (the building has a fun literary history). But all are furnished in the same simple and countrified greige style, with mauve carpets, sumptuous beds, and original fireplaces and balconies. The base category is Cosy, but opt for a River Room such as Baudelaire for a nice view.


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£
131

per night

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The Chelsea Harbour Hotel

Chelsea, London, England

7
Telegraph expert rating

Part of a smart Eighties development overlooking the small marina at Chelsea Harbour which is accessed from the Thames at high tide and used by luxury yachts and powerboats. Opt for a harbour-view room and dine on the likes of tomato tarte tatin with Bocconcini mozzarella at its Chelsea Riverside Brasserie, which overlooks the water and has outside terrace seating. An additional bonus is the size of the bedrooms here: they are unusually spacious, and furnished with sofa, coffee table, desk and broad sideboard for tea- and coffee-making.


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£
203

per night

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Contributions by Emma Beaumont, Rachel Cranshaw, Mark C. O’Flaherty, Lizzie Frainier, Jenny Hatton, Simon Horsford, Charlotte Johnstone, Kathryn Liston, Benjamin Parker


  • The Goring

    HOTEL
    Belgravia, London, England

    9
    Telegraph expert rating


    A favourite of dowager duchesses, lords, ladies and assorted gentlefolk; the Middleton family and…

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    £
    587

    per night

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  • Chiltern Firehouse

    HOTEL
    Marylebone, London, England

    9
    Telegraph expert rating


    A magnet for media and entertainment types, darling. Interiors are charmingly retro, service is p…

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    From


    £
    650

    per night

    Rates provided by
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  • Beaverbrook Town House

    HOTEL
    Chelsea, London, England

    9
    Telegraph expert rating


    On elegant Sloane Street, right opposite leafy, Grade II-listed Cadogan Place Gardens, the Beaver…

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    From


    £
    400

    per night

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