A friend asked me about hotels in London and specifically St Martin's and The Great Eastern.
St Martin Lane. It's on the edge of Covent Garden - a Philippe Starck hotel done in the late 90s with innovative colour wash lights by Isometrix. It's OK and the location is convenient for the theatres, restaurants and main tourist sites. I am not sure whether one would have a memorable stay though - it exudes a strangely underwhelming feeling.
Great Eastern Hotel. It's a Conran designed hotel I think. It's next to Liverpool Street - full of, hmm, business people. Not too relaxing I would not have thought. Plus the trains will be coming and going all day long!
Naturally, I proceeded to suggest other possibilities. The Covent Garden Hotel - stylishly central, discrete and full of 'A' list film directors (you see, they have a built in cinema). It's sister hotel Charlotte Street Hotel is also very stylish - London enough but not in-your-face touristy. Or the latest Soho Hotel - bang in the middle of Soho yet tucked away. They all belong to the Firmdale Hotels group.
The Trafalgar. Ok it's a Hilton Hotel but it's the group's first designer hotel in London at a great location (bang on Trafalgar Square) and convenient for a morning stroll in St James' Park to watch the geese and ducks swanning about. The Rockwell bar on the ground floor can be a buzzy place in the evenings - good cocktails.