The third luxury hotel, and period-passion-project, of Douglas Blain and Peter McKay (see Hazlitts and The Rookery), Batty Langley’s was spun out lovingly over five years, before quietly opening its doors in 2015.
Georgian-themed with all the trimmings, everything – from the carved wooden bedsteads to the housekeeping trolleys – has been faithfully sourced, or recreated by an army of local artisans. The result is an explosion of deep-wine hues, sumptuous damasks and gilded stucco – with characterful portraits and objets d’art at every turn.
Not that Batty’s takes itself too seriously. Taking their cue from Georgian wit, visual riffs abound: mirrors that fold away to reveal TVs, toilet-cum-thrones – even secret rooms. The 29 regal bedrooms are named after historic Spitafield residents, with especial preference for ‘tarts and thieves’.
Batty’s may be grand but it’s also homely, and eminently private. Because they eschew mass-marketing (preferring the more discreet channels of word-of-mouth) you’ll often have the sitting room to yourself, along with its well-stocked honesty bar. An indulgent breakfast in bed is almost mandatory, while the charming staff are on-call 24 hours a day for room service.
The hotel is filled with 3,500 antique books that are playfully moved about between rooms – an apt expression of a hotel bent on storytelling.
Batty’s may not have courted attention, but it’s certainly found it – with a fast-established reputation for atmosphere and excellence, and the plaudits to show for it. A Spitafields institution in the making.