south place

South Place Hotel Moorgate

knight frank’s annual wealth report names my hometown of london as an integral city for ultra high net worth individuals (UHNWIs), which doesn’t come as a surprise given how much i’m currently struggling to get a foothold on the housing market! the report makes fascinating reading though, and gives some really interesting observations about why london has become so significant to this group: the ever-increasing demand for rental property makes it a natural investment city for developers, while the strength of london’s education offer has long underpinned demand for property among UHNWIs seeking to craft a global education experience for their children. the regeneration of regent street’s luxury stores coupled with out-of-town designer outlets like bicester village have also added to the allure.

to help me better understand the UHNWI lifestyle in london, i snapped up the chance to check into the luxury boutique south place hotel in moorgate and experience living like one of these high earners for myself. nearby st. john street in clerkenwell has been identified in this year’s report as one of the five global prime residential hotspots – where a typical 700 sq ft apartment will set you back a cool $1.3m! – so it seemed an apt place to get a true taste of the lifestyle.

South Place Hotel Moorgate - 3 Bar

when it launched in 2012, the £50 million south place development was the first purpose-built hotel to open in the square mile in 100 years. the brainchild of d&d london (the restaurant group behind floridita and skylon) the bulky grey box exterior may divide opinion but inside the fun, stylish conran interiors are far more likely to please. the communal spaces are a perfect blend of contemporary and mid-century design and a joyful expression of art appears as a central theme running through the hotel; the lobby and downstairs bistro showcasing colourful pop-art inspired prints and hot pink wire shoe sculptures by cathy miles, while in each of the 80 rooms a different limited edition print from nearby hoxton gallery crowns the bed.

Wealth Report South Place Hotel Wilson 02

in my room the oversize king bed was adorned with bedlinen from josephine home and illuminated from beneath, so that it seemed to be hovering above the carpet. ideally positioned at the foot of the bed was a 40-inch bang & olufsen tv – complete with a plethora of films and specially compiled playlists – which made it incredibly appealing to just jump under the covers and spend the evening in the hotel room watching movies – especially given the generously stocked mini-bar offering full-size bottles of sipsmith gin and bags of artisanal popcorn and mixed nuts. there was even a lemon and lime provided, complete with cutting board!

Wealth Report South Place Hotel Wilson 06

the piece-de-resistance though was the grey marble bathroom, with a gigantic bathtub (easily big enough for two!) and double walk-in shower, both stocked with beautifully packaged st. clement’s toiletries by english perfumer james heeley – a traditional eau de cologne scent translated into a chic, contemporary line whose name is taken from the rhyme ‘oranges and lemons’ (circa 1740) that refers to church bells within or close to the city of london – a lovely touch referencing the hotel’s location in the heart of the city’s heritage.

South Place Hotel Wilson Bathroom

as tempting as it would have been to spend the afternoon happily soaking in the over-sized tub, the rest of the hotel – and the surrounding area – beckoned. housed in a stylish ‘welcome box’ by studio conran there was a handy jogging (walking) map showing the best route to take in the local sights, but i opted instead to head straight to the barbican centre to explore the hidden tropical oasis of the conservatory and chance my luck at getting into the world of charles and ray eames exhibition (alas, the queues on a saturday were insane – a real UHNWI would have booked ahead i’m sure!)

having negotiating the growing throng of hipsters downstairs at 3 bar as i headed back to my room, it was time to get dolled up for the night and make my way up to the seventh floor for dinner. the michelin-starred angler is known for its sensational seafood from british waters, so we were excited to experience the 8-course tasting menu, which promised to combine the best seasonal and local ingredients into inspiring new classics.

Angler South Place Hotel Martini

set within an elegant dining room that sparkled beneath a mirrored ceiling by sculptors grace & webb, angler boasts a floor-to-ceiling glass frontage which look out across the city of london. after indulging in a leisurely martini on the rooftop terrace – which is beautifully furnished with patricia urquiola crinoline furniture and a lovely suntrap in summer months – we were pointed in the direction of the last window spot by the maitre d’, who didn’t want us to miss out on this prime spot for the night.

angler’s executive chef, tony fleming, has built a reputation for angler as one of the city’s top seafood restaurants and was awarded a michelin star in 2013, just a year after launch. the reflect both sides of angler’s personality – the subtle perfection of fish and crustacea, and the adventurous flavour combinations where tony expresses his personality and culinary mastery with colour, texture, and modern ingredients.

“dishes don’t just materialize, there is no moment of epiphany,” he says. “every plate starts with a stunning piece of fish and then layer by layer, flavours and textures are built around that fish. chefs, like writers and artists, have creative blocks. it takes stages of experimenting and tasting before dishes are included on the menu.”

Angler tasting menu at South Place Hotel 01

at every stage of the tasting menu this care and attention to detail was evident, from the delicate flavours of the yellowfin tuna tartare with lime, chilli & avocado to the richer meatiness of the cornish crab soup with fried oyster & rouille. the tasting experience was playfully topped and tailed with two amuse bouches that mimicked one another visually, although certainly not in taste!

every dish was then perfectly paired with a wine from the bounty selection, introduced knowledgeably and enthusiastically by our young french sommelier, including the unusual but intriguing pairing of a sherry with the crab soup!

you might think that after eight delicious courses we might struggle to force down a nightcap, but it felt rude not to retire downstairs to 3 bar for a quick amaretto to round off the night…

Wealth Report South Place Hotel Wilson 16

South Place Hotel Wilson 14

after a blissful night’s sleep on my hypnos mattress, it was a pure delight to wake up to fresh nespresso coffee and breakfast at my door. although i had truly thought i wouldn’t be able to manage another bite after the previous night’s delectable meal, the light and fluffy scrambled eggs were calling to me and it would have been sinful not to have enjoyed my last few moments as a UHNWI indulging in breakfast in bed over the sunday papers. it even felt like a requirement to browse the business section!

Wealth Report South Place Hotel Wilson 18

south place hotel, 3 south place, london, ec2

my stay at south place hotel was sponsored by knight frank. all opinions & photography my own, except first 2 images.  


  1. That bed. It makes you want to crawl into in on a cold winter’s day. And the food! Yes, very nice indeed.

    • kate

      25 November

      I always judge a hotel on how big & fluffy their beds are! You should always have the *best* night’s sleep in a hotel room :)

  2. Sue

    20 November

    Ah what a brilliant evening you had, I love a bit of lux… and those bar stools!

    • kate

      25 November

      So much fun Sue, very lucky to have the chance to experience it :)

  3. Stacey Sheppard

    20 November

    Oh how the other half live hey? Looks like you had a wonderfully indulgent time Kate. That taster menu sounds delicious!

    • kate

      25 November

      So delicious Stacey – well worth it for an anniversary or birthday treat! xx

  4. Kimberly Duran

    21 November

    Oh wow, what an experience! The incredibly luxurious surroundings, the incredible food, the attention to detail… sigh. It looks like you had an amazing time (I would have had a hard time leaving the room myself). Now where’s that damn lottery win, already?! ;) xx

    • kate

      25 November

      I know, right! They do have great package deals though, which would be wonderful for a celebratory weekend or birthday gift x

  5. Maxine Brady

    21 November

    Love the shot of you in the dressing gown! I always take selfies in hotel rooms (hope that doesn’t sound too odd!)

    • kate

      25 November

      hehe! such fun Maxine and totally not an odd thing to do… ;)

  6. Antonia Ludden

    21 November

    Ooh, a lovely slice of luxury… Can’t beat a gorgeous little hotel stay, it always feels like such a treat and a change from the norm. The food looks amazing! xx

    • kate

      25 November

      It’s *such* a luxury to stay in a hotel in your hometown. I’m always asked for recommendations of places to stay in London and have only ever stayed in a handful of places – this has now moved swiftly to the top of my recommendation list!

  7. Oh wow Kate, it all looks stunning. I was sold on the lime and chopping board, never mind the taster menu! x

    • kate

      25 November

      I know, right? So cool!

  8. Tiffany J Riley

    23 November

    Forget London-buy in Kent-everyone else is!!! That hotel stay looked nothing short of incredible. Just wow. xx

    • kate

      25 November

      Kent, eh? Pretty sure the prices there are already pushed up above my meagre budget… :(

  9. Arianna

    24 November

    oooooh lush – love this! Obviously my fav pic is the selfie in your bathrobe :) Gorgeous xxx

  10. Mariana

    23 May

    Dear Kate,

    About the breakfast… The menu for room service is different from the menu from South Place Chop House?

    • kate

      26 May

      Hi Mariana, if I remember correctly it is an edited version.. but it was a while ago that I stayed, so might be different now. You’re best to check with the hotel directly.

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