Browns, Telephone and Kipling

Browns, Telephone and Kipling

The first ever hotel to open in London in 1837

Location: 33 Albemarle Street, Mayfair, W1S 4BP

Description: Set in the heart of Mayfair on Albemarle Street, Brown's is one of the most historic hotels as it was the first ever hotel to open in London in 1837 and is composed of 11 Georgian town houses. Brown's was opened by Lord Byron's butler, James Brown, and his wife Sarah, to provide 'genteel' accommodation for discerning people.

The Kipling Suite, the jewel in Brown's crown of suites, honours Rudyard Kipling who famously wrote childrens classic The Jungle Book here.

In 1889, the hotel was unified with the neighbouring St George's Hotel, as they backed onto each other and were eventually merged to allow for a throughway between Dover Street and Albemarle Street.

After a 3 year and £24m restoration in 2010, Brown's was restored to its rightful position as one of the most intimate and charming hotels in London. The interiors are contemporary and have a real sense of style, while retaining much of their original, quintessentially English elegance.

Browns was also the site of the first telephone call in London made by its inventor, Alexander Graham Bell in 1876, as he demonstrated his latest invention to the British government. The X Club, a private scientific dining club, throughout the 1860s to 1880s. Thomas Huxley and Joseph Hooker led it, and they were all followers of Charles Darwin's theory of natural selection and academic liberalism.

Royalty have stayed here, as did Napoleon III, and Theodore Roosevelt stayed here twice.

W K Vanderbilt's scandalous secret wedding took place here during his stay in 1903.

Samuel Langhorne Clemens (Mark Twain), visited in 1907, appearing in his dressing gown and slippers to the staff, calling it a placid, subdued, homelike, old-fashioned English inn... a blessed retreat of a sort now rare in England, and becoming rarer every year.

Themes: HistoricalHistorical Theme  ArchitectureArchitecture Theme  CelebrityCelebrity Theme
Browns, Telephone and Kipling

The first ever hotel to open in London in 1837

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George Clooney stays here when in London. (Jerry Maggs)
Posted by Jerry Maggs on 2010-11-09

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