The red brick Claridge’s is the quintessential luxury Mayfair hotel, proudly proclaiming taste in discretion as administered through glittering Deco accents. The building dates to 1894 (when Gilbert & Sullivan’s producer rebuilt it), but modern amenities are installed among the gilded plasterwork and (non-working) fireplaces—neither floorboards nor exacting staff daregrumble. From the bathrooms (heated floors, high-tech toilet/bidets) to cavernous wardrobes and plump beds as wide as some studio apartments, there’s not much to complain about. Its main lift is the last in Central London to be operated by hand—there’s a sofa inside should you tire during your five-level journey to the top floor—and its clubby cocktail bars and Fera restaurant are favored by modern-day fashion icons (your Von Furstenbergs, your Jaggers, your Eltons) who detest the starched exclusivity that can make the Ritz such a drag. Pedigreed unconventionality has always been a theme: In 1945, Winston Churchill declared suite 212 temporarily Yugoslavian territory so baby Prince Alexander II could claim to be born on home soil. Don’t miss the lobby Christmas tree, designed each year by a new design luminary (in 2017, it was Karl Lagerfeld).