WHAT’S THE SCOOP? If you’re looking for somewhere special to stay with your pet, look no further than Egerton House. This luxurious 5* hotel in Knightsbridge, West London, feels more like a homely private residence than anything else and nothing is too much trouble for the friendly staff.
The hotel is set in a grand townhouse on a quiet street, just moments from Harrods and The V&A Museum. There are 23 stylish rooms to choose from, as well as four studio suites and an elegant master suite. It’s wonderfully posh, but not pretentious – always good when you’re travelling with a dog in tow.
ARE MUDDY PAWS WELCOME? Most definitely. Unlike a lot of other London hotels, Egerton House welcomes dogs with open arms and Ernie was more than happy to test its VIP (Very Important Pet) offerings.
After booking our stay, we were sent a Pet Preference Form to fill out, letting the hotel know a little more about Ernie, what he liked to eat and whether he would require towels, toys, bowls or chews left in our room. We were also asked if we needed a dog walker or if Ernie would like a groom – but I was most impressed by the selection of dog beds on offer.
Ernie could choose from seven – yes, seven! – different types of bed, from a luxury leather version to a mini zebra print four-poster. After much deliberation, I opted for a giant paw-shaped bed and it turned out to be a good choice as Ernie barely moved off it all evening.
The hotel also offers an extensive in-room pet menu with dishes for breakfast and supper, such as Bowl-Licking Fruit Yoghurt (£5) – Ernie’s favourite – and Bow-Wow Tenderloin of Beef (£12), served with eggs and brown rice. There’s also the famous Doggy Afternoon tea, but more on that later!
Four-legged guests are also given a cute doggy sign to hang on the door that said “Shhh… I am sleeping” and when it was time for our turndown service, we got chocolates while Ernie was given a couple of treats and a cute red bandana with the hotel’s details embroidered on it. Very cute!
AND WHEN I’M DOG TIRED? A good night’s sleep is practically guaranteed at Egerton House. We were lucky enough to stay in the master suite – the decadent Victoria and Albert – and, well, wow! It was located on the ground floor of the hotel and had an enclosed garden balcony that was just big enough for a table and two chairs. It was also handy when it came to letting Ernie get some air.
We loved the enormous bed and Rococo-style furniture and it was lovely to have a separate living area too, complete with drinks trolley. The opulent bathroom came with Penhaligon’s toiletries, as well as plush robes and slippers and there was even a separate shower room. The suite was also kitted out with several enormous flatscreen TVs, complete with Sky, and a selection of complimentary magazines. We couldn’t have asked for anything more.
Egerton House is part of the Red Carnation group, so seeing fresh, red carnations dotted around the hotel was a nice touch, too. I wonder how many people make the connection…
HOW ARE THE SCOOBY SNACKS? Guests can order from a 24-hour room service menu but the hotel is renowned for its lavish afternoon tea, and rightly so. For £40, you can enjoy a delicious selection of finger sandwiches scones and homemade cakes, as well as teas from around the world. It is served in the lounge, which a lovely, relaxed room, complete with open fire.
Dogs can also chow down on their own version of the tea for £18. One the day we visited, Ernie was treated to homemade meatloaf, some peanut butter biscuits and a Billy & Margot iced treat, as well as a squeaky toy which he loved – much to the amusement of other guests. The food didn’t last very long as he wolfed it down within seconds so I guess he gave it the seal of approval!
The lounge is also a great place to enjoy a cocktail. The frozen martinis served at Egerton House are legendary and make for a great bit of food theatre, while the downstairs breakfast room is well worth a visit come the morning.
ANY FOUR-LEGGED FRIENDS TO PLAY WITH? No, but if you induldge in the afternoon tea, chances are you will bump into other pets and may even get to meet the manager’s dog, Milly. The pampered pooch has personally approved all the dog-friendly offerings at Egerton House and is something of a local celebrity. She is also the dog used in all publicity photographs.
WHERE’S GOOD FOR WALKIES? Kensington Gardens and Hyde Park are a short walk from Egerton House and both are a dog’s dream. There are miles of pathways and trails to follow as well as fountains, pavilions, open spaces and wooded areas, not to mention Kensington Palace itself. Both are Royal Parks so you may well come across areas where dogs must be kept on lead – just adhere to the signs.
For more inspiration and ideas when it comes to finding dog-friendly things to do in West London, check out my Ruff Guide.
WHAT ERNIE LOVED: The homemade dog food, the squeaky toys, being spoilt rotten!
WHAT I LOVED: The laid-back atmosphere, the friendly staff, the location
GET ON THE DOG AND BONE: Classic double rooms start from £270 per night, including breakfast. For more information or to book, visit egertonhousehotel.com or call (020) 7589 2412.