STAY & PLAY
HYATT REGENCY LONDON - THE CHURCHILL
By Mayleen Ramey
I recently discovered the existence of secret garden courts in London and became fascinated with not only exploring them, but finding a way to play tennis on these mysterious grounds. This feat proved almost impossible. Having visited and documented a few, the experience was nothing short of magical, something I wanted to share with tennis-lovers through my travel guides and content. Yet, because these gated, private courts are exclusively for square residents, the idea of easily booking one seemed as inconceivable as playing on the grass courts of Wimbledon.
I had almost given up my search, when a friend suggested I look into a hotel on Portman Square in Marylebone. This is when I found the Hyatt Regency London - The Churchill, a five-star hotel with its own garden square court. I immediately made arrangements for a staycation, finally turning my tennis dream into a reality.
While I was initially drawn to the property for the court, I was thoroughly impressed with every aspect of my visit. From the beautiful rooms to the newly-built gym, the elaborate breakfasts and the elevated workspace, I had everything I could possibly need and more!
Rooms with a View
I was welcomed with thoughtful gifts, a personalized note, and the most picturesque view of the garden and tennis court, itself. The room was refined and comfortable with nods to Winston Churchill throughout (his pet cat, Jock, in stuffed animal form was an adorable touch). I was also invited to the Premium Balcony Suite with rooftop views of Marylebone. Having the space and conveniences of a one-bedroom flat, including a living/dining room and full kitchen, this would have been perfect for an extended stay.
The Montagu Kitchen & Lounge
The restaurant is an elegant, vast marbled room with high ceilings and soft lighting. One side is more formal with seated dining and floor-to-ceiling windows, while the other half is cozier with comfy nooks and a fireplace. I had the pleasure of many enjoyable meals here, including their daily breakfast buffet (what a spread!), apres-tennis tea with freshly-baked scones, as well as their three-course dinner. After a meal, I recommended moving to the lounge for dessert or a digestif; curling up on the couch next to the fire with an assortment of sweets is the perfect way to end an evening.
Regency Club Lounge: From Business Hours to Happy Hour
While I was technically on a getaway, a content creator's work is never done! I was grateful to have access to the Regency Club Lounge, a private workspace with plenty of seating, snacks throughout the day and complimentary happy hour with a delicious assortment of small bites.
Similar to an airport lounge, this was also a great option for travelers who checked out from the hotel and were awaiting flights, giving them access to food and beverages, meetings rooms and even showers on-site. One side of the lounge is family-friendly and great for travelers with kids.
Health & Wellness
With a newly-opened Wellness & Fitness Center, the Hyatt Regency London - the Churchill now provides guests with state-of-the-art health and spa amenities. I was thrilled with the fitness center, one of the nicest and largest hotel gyms I've seen in London. The open airy space, located on the second floor of the hotel, was filled for an array of cardio equipment, weights and a Kinesis, plus windows to the patio letting in natural light.
Across the hallway, you'll find the zen-like wellness area, which includes a mini salon and spa, offering facials and massages in their two treatment rooms.
Secret Garden Tennis Court
For me, the shining jewel in the crown of the hotel is, of course, the tennis court! Being inside the gates of Portman Square Garden, on this private court, is an incomparable experience. Not only because it's incredibly rare to have access to a garden square court, but mostly because the scenery, surrounded by a canopy of trees while you play tennis, is simply breathtaking.
Video, photos and more info on this Dream Court can be found at my travel guide/blog:
A Jaunt to Daunt
Though I'd been to Marylebone on several occasions, I tend to spend most of my time in my own neighborhood, South Kensington. Staying at the Churchill, gave me an opportunity to stroll around and explore a new part of London like a local. Marylebone is a nice mix of residential charm and city buzz, with access to both, literally steps away. Situated between the glitziest part of town (Mayfair), the liveliness of Soho, and two beautiful parks (Hyde & Regents), Marylebone is walking distance from anywhere and anything you could be in the mood for. While Portman Square was peaceful and relaxed, just down the block is the vibrant hustle and bustle of Oxford Street, Europe's busiest shopping street. However, if you stroll a few minutes in the other direction, you'll be met with a completely different vibe - the quaint, yet stylish village feel of Marylebone High Street.
My favorite discovery on the High Street was an independent bookseller called Daunt Books. A former Edwardian book shop, completed in 1912 that specialized in travel books, a visit here does feel like you've stumbled into a faraway land in a different era.
The variety, ease and charm of Marylebone make it an ideal location for a visit to London. I had a wonderful stay and and would highly recommend the Hyatt Regency London - The Churchill, especially if you're a tennis-lover!
I'll be compiling more of my suggestions and tips in a City Guide soon! In the meantime, check out my video recap and a few faves with links below.
STAY & PLAY
A GlobeHAPA Production
30 Portman Square
London, England W1H 7BH
STAY & PLAY
▪️ Hyatt Regency London - The Churchill: @hyattchurchill
▪️ Private tennis court, ping pong table, playground & fitness centre
Check hotel availability here
▪️ Daunt Books: @dauntbooks
▪️ Chiltern Firehouse: @chilternfirehouse
▪️ Royal China Dim Sum, Baker Street