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This Gothic red-brick palace, built in the 1870s as a terminal hotel for a railway line, is one of London’s most distinctive buildings; its meticulous 2011 restoration not only rescued a Victorian icon from neglect but also created an enviable property. Premium rooms have an unforgettable view down the ribbed, cast-iron cavern of the train shed, where Eurostar arrives and departs for Paris. There, the epic Chambers rooms have 5.5m (18-ft.) ceilings and details such as (now-decorative) fireplaces, arched windows, and substantial wooden doors. Rooms in the new Barlow wing lack those long views and suit corporate hotel tastes—the real show is in the original building. Echoing public spaces are a gilt-and-tile parade of self-important Victorian excess, from the winged Grand Staircase to the lushly carved The Gilbert Scott brasserie (named for the architect; local star Marcus Wareingoversees it) and the old wooden Booking Hall, now a bistro where old English punch cocktails are revived. The buildingwas “too good for its purpose,” lamented Scott, whose own son went mad and died in one of the rooms. It’s worth a wander even if you’re not staying here—management knows it’s a jewel, and it welcomes visitors.