W first launched in New York in 1998. Four years later, the hotel can now be found all over the world from Los Angeles to Istanbul, Paris to Barcelona, and Seoul to Bali. And there’s more coming up! I had heard so many great things about it I decided to give myself a birthday treat and stay over — a great excuse to enjoy the bar (without a tube curfew) the spa, and then some.
I hit W Leicester Square (Honolulu next birthday!), which you’d have to be blind to miss. It’s an imposing yet beautiful building which by night takes on a life of its own — literally. Architect and installation guru Jason Bruges has mounted cameras onto the roof of the hotel which capture the mood and life of neighbouring streets. When dusk falls, the impressionistic views skin the entire building to create a rather dreamy and fluid facade. By day, the facade soaks up the sun thus reducing the heating bill for the building — clever!
That’s just the outside.
Come inside and you’ll experience the Leicester Square W theme — a marriage of the heritage of the streets of Soho it sits on. Think classic British tweed meets the dance floor — you can’t go far without bumping into a mirror ball or 27! To be exact, 660 in total.
The layout perfectly matches the theme. VIP bar Wyld — which features a 3m-wide glitter ball (mind your head!) and DJs late into the night from Wyld Wednesdays through Social Sundays — sits only metres away from The (W)riters’ Library. Curator (journalist and playwright in his spare time) Damian Barr handpicked 10 of his favourite authors who in turn chose their favourite books for patrons to enjoy. Turn to the inside cover for a personally written account of what that book means to them. If you have an hour to kill, this would be the perfect place for a cuppa and a very comfortable read.
Upstairs, my room was super stylish and comfy with a big white gorgeous bed and enough lighting options to start my own rave. It also provided some stunning views to wake up to on my birthday morning. Bliss!
If you fancy a little something extra, the W brand’s signature Whatever/Whenever service philosophy means they will jump to get you whatever you want — private fashion show, an insider tour of London’s alternative nightlife scene, you name it — whenever you want it. As long as it’s legal, of course.
Check in to experience all these and more for yourself. No need to wait for your birthday! — By Fiona Evans
W London Leicester Square is located at 10 Wardour Street, London, W1D 6Q. Prices start from £335 (S$671) per double room per night, inclusive of taxes. To book, call 00800 325 25252 or visit W London Leicester Square.