The richly textured rooms, mainly illuminated by table lamps, have beds so wide and pillows so large that king-size is an understatement. The distressed-wood furniture echoes the shabby chic of a French country house. The colours of the cushions, walls and fabrics give each room a distinctive feel: some are more masculine, others more feminine – all are surprisingly bright given the number of tall buildings outside.
Keeping in touch: Wide-screen TVs and DVD sets in the bedrooms; where possible, bathrooms have TVs built into the wall. Every room has an FM radio at the bedside. High-speed internet, both wired and wireless, is available throughout the hotel. Tucked away in a quiet mews in St James’s, just behind the Ritz, stands Dukes Hotel, the latest addition to the growing portfolio of classic modern residences run by Gordon Campbell-Gray of One Aldwych fame.
It’s a shrewd choice; this old-school Mayfair property is just the kind of place that benefits from his touch. For while he’s retained the quiet confidence that such a venerable establishment seems to have by right, he has dispensed with the tired décor and stuffy atmosphere to extend its appeal to a new generation of guests. Many of its lakes are in poor health, facing pressure from sediment washed down from the hills and nutrients introduced by farming, habitation and tourism. To raise awareness of these issues, the National Trust is compiling a Borrowdale Catchment Trail, which takes the >walker from the source of the River Derwent, high in the Honister Pass, to its end in Bassenthwaite Lake.
The linear walk runs for about 12 miles and is designed to show how a river develops and influ-ences the landscape. This walk follows the start of that trail, heading down towards the jaws of Borrowdale, before climbing back up through open country to the Honister Pass. The walk starts at Honister Slate Mine at the top of the Honister Pass, 1,090ft above Borrowdale. Leave the mine by the National Trust car park, heading downhill along a service road. Where you meet the main road, cross over and follow a narrow bridleway on the left, before briefly rejoining the road. Read More: Wish Events | Settlement Agent Fees