For over a hundred years, the five-star Connaught has been one of London’s hotels synonymous with royalty, glamour and celebrity – a fact which made Marc Jacobs’ insanely decadent bash in 2007 the perfect way to mark its closure for a £70 million refurb. A crack team of craftsmen and architects (including British interior designer Guy Oliver) was drafted in to revive period details and sympathetically integrate 21st-century comforts. The 88 guestrooms skillfully balance pale period colours, damask silks and antique furnishings with new bespoke pieces, abstract paintings and discreet technology. Beds are dressed in Italian linen and caramel cashmere blankets, while the white marble bathrooms boast both cast-iron tubs and separate showers. French chef and Alain Ducasse protégée Helène Darroze has been awarded a Michelin star for her eponymous restaurant at the Connaught, Aman Resorts opened their first UK spa and pool here (see Play), while the jewel-coloured Coburg Bar (a reference to the hotel’s original name) has been strewn with crystal chandeliers, velvet armchairs and Julian Opie art: the perfect place to sip an appletini after a hard day’s shopping in nearby Mount Street (home to Marc Jacobs), which, like the rest of this pretty pocket of Mayfair, is enjoying a renewed buzz.