Whilst I have frequented and dined at Shangri-La The Shard on numerous occasions, my most recent overnight experience was undoubted the cherry on the cake, accompanied by my faithful companion, Charlotte, who has become rather acquainted with the suite life. The hotel occupies floors 34 to 52 of The Shard, regarded as one of the most ambitious architectural endeavours in the United Kingdom with its distinctive spire shape and its height which makes it Western Europe’s tallest building.
We stayed in the Iconic Shard Suite on the 45th floor which featured floor-to-ceiling windows and unparalleled panoramic skyline views of London’s most notable landmarks in an ultra-luxurious setting. Upon entering the room, the automated window panels were activated to reveal a sweet handwritten welcome message on window, a bouquet of fresh flowers placed on the side table beneath it.
A seamless fusion of refined materials, such as marble and silk, are blended with contemporary light wood, highlighted by sophisticated décor with Chinoiserie touches; a nod to Shangri-La’s Asian heritage. The sumptuous body contouring king size bed draped in 600-threadcount Frette bed linens and feather duvet provided a dreamy night’s sleep, equipped with bedside controls for lighting, the sun shielding panel and black-out curtains.
There was a separate living room with a full-size executive writing desk, Nespresso coffee machine, tea-making facilities with a porcelain Chinese tea set, and a minibar. A bottle of Veuve Cliquot Champagne was readily chilled on the side, accompanied by a trio of patisserie and a box of chocolates, one of which was in the shape of a mobile phone which had been personalised with my image on the ‘screen’ – Shangri-La certainly knows how to make their guests feel extra special.
In the large marble-clad bathroom was a walk-in rain shower with signature Jo Loves bathroom amenities, a premium Washlet toilet (that I still dream of having one installed in my home), mirror-embedded television, and a freestanding bathtub with a view overlooking the River Thames and the city that I will never get tired of – perfect for an indulgent bubble-bath with a glass of Champagne in hand.
An evening turn down service was also provided, which is always a nice touch.
Pupgrade Your Stay!
Ever since I adopted Charlotte, I’m always on the lookout for dog-friendly destinations and was delighted that Shangri-La The Shard welcomes canine companions alongside their owners and strives to provide the pawfect getaway for guests and VIPs (Very Important Pets!). A range of doggie amenities were arranged for Charlotte as part of the pupgrade, including a comfortable dog bed, food and water bowls, complimentary toys, a local guide to a dog-friendly London, as well as a dog menu available for in-room dining. Delicious dog treats are also available at BAR(K) 31 on the ground floor, which was unfortunately closed on the evening of our stay, but of which we shall be returning soon to check out their menu.
We dined at TĪNG, their signature restaurant located on level 35, one of my favourite spots with the best view in London. Derived from the Chinese word for ‘living room’, TĪNG offers a dynamic sky-high dining experience, inspired by Asian cultures, serving signature and modern dishes accompanied by an award-winning wine list. With spectacular views from our window seat, we were welcomed with glasses of Champagne, the lovely manager, Marco, executing their signature dry ice fog effect with perfection as always – welcome to the clouds!
We started with the beef tataki and tuna tataki before moving on to some larger dishes; Japanese A5 Wagyu Sirloin with soy glazed carrot, carrot purée, beef & carrot sauce, “Ca Nuong Lo” Vietnamese style oven baked seabass with pineapple, lemongrass & kumquat sauce, and wok fried tamarind prawns. Our dining experience ended on a sweet note with the banoffee millefeuille and mango & coconut sago pudding paired with some dessert wines, alongside a miniature edible Shard and petit fours.
Hotel breakfasts are one of the highlights of any stay, and the breakfast buffet at Shangri-La certainly didn’t fail to impress; a fusion of Western and Asian options featuring a lavish spread that included fresh fruit, pastries and cakes, cold meats and cheese, a hearty English breakfast, and my favourite of them all despite its simplicity, congee with pickled vegetables and condiments. They also have a la carte on offer from which we were recommended the wonton soup noodles. A far cry from my speedy 10 minute coffee and toast in the morning.
Floating 52 stories above London, their infinity Sky Pool is the highest hotel pool in Western Europe and sits alongside the Sky Sauna and fully-equipped gym to offer guests a wellness oasis with unparalleled views. Booking a slot is required for use of the Sky Pool and Sky Sauna, and I of course booked us into the earliest slot for the day at 6am to make the most of the calmness of the morning. The early bird catches the worm after all – or the sunrise in this case.
A luxurious home away from home up in the clouds that I wouldn’t mind waking up in again.
A word of thanks to Shangri-La The Shard London for hosting us over the weekend; I look forward to returning soon to visit Bar 31 with Charlotte.
- My experience at Shangri-La The Shard London was complimentary – views and photos are my own.