MT business travel: Room Service - Where Christian Rucker stays ...

FOR BUSINESS: I live in Shropshire and visit London regularly for work. I pretty much always stay at the Knightsbridge Hotel in Beaufort Gardens. It's a boutique hotel owned by Firmdale Hotels. I love it; it's very cool and fun to stay in. It's not a classic hotel - there's no dining room, for example. But the staff will bring easy meals up to your room, and there is an honesty bar in the drawing room where you help yourself to a drink and just make a note of what you've had. The rooms are large and comfortable, and the bathrooms are nice and big too. It's much more of a home-from-home than a hotel. There are some hotels you walk in and don't feel that you're smart enough, but the Knightsbridge isn't at all snobby like that. As soon as you walk in, the staff rush to help you. I stayed at the Knightbridge a lot during my fourth pregnancy, and the staff know me now and are always very friendly. And the beauty of Beaufort Gardens is that you can always park there. I went through a stage of trying a different hotel each time I visited London, but since finding the Knightsbridge, I don't go anywhere else.

FOR PLEASURE: One of the most wonderful hotels my husband and I ever stayed in was Le Royal Meridien Baan Taling Ngam in Koh Samui, Thailand. It's very romantic, located on a cliffside with a walk down to the most amazing and beautiful beach. The beds are huge, the bathrooms have big sunken baths, the hotel offers Thai massages, and the restaurants are excellent. It also has an infinity pool with a bar in the middle. The staff wear beautiful white uniforms and look very neat and tidy, and they're extremely friendly. Koh Samui itself is a beautiful island and although we were there for only five nights, we spent some time exploring. We took a boat out and picnicked on the beach of a neighbouring island, and also hired a jeep and drove around Koh Samui. But mostly we just rested, as we'd both been working really hard back in the UK. I wouldn't go back at the moment because we've got four children under the age of seven and it's too far to travel, but I'd love to return one day. Another hotel we have found that is good if you have children is Babington House in Somerset.

Christian Rucker is founder of The White Company.

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