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A Stay at NoMad London, the First International Outpost for the Luxury Hotel Brand

The intimate 91-room property feels like an unfussy private club

by Terry Zarikian

September 6, 2023

Hotel housed in the former Bow Street Magistrates’ Court / Photo: Courtesy of Emsie Jonker

London’s historic Covent Garden Bow Street Magistrates’ Court and Police Station houses the first international outpost of the Sydell Group’s NoMad hotel. Continuing with the brand’s tradition of offering exquisite dining and drinking spaces, the intimate 91-room property feels like an unfussy private club. Exuberant foliage creates an abundance of warmth, while an art program featuring postwar American painters and the European avant-garde gives one the sense of being inside a collector’s home.

Magistrates’ Ballroom / Photo: Courtesy of Sydell Group

A friendly staff makes arrival and check-in a pleasure. A series of cozy sitting areas overlook a soaring open atrium, evocative of an Edwardian greenhouse. There, the NoMad Restaurant celebrates the art of dining at all hours of the day, with a focus on local and regional ingredients from farm, field and coast. Must-haves include the Creedy Carver chicken for two stuffed with foie gras, black truffle and brioche; the unusual carrot tartare with quail’s egg and sunflower seeds; and the golden seared diver scallop with chorizo and seasonal beans. The cozy Atrium Bar serves cocktails curated by Leo Robitschek, the visionary creator of the original NoMad Bar in New York. I went wild for the better-than-dessert Like Water for Chocolate, a concoction of Glenfiddich 15 Year, Toki Japanese whiskey, Diplomático Reserva Exclusiva rum and Muyu Jasmine Verte liqueur, sensually draped with white chocolate and wasabi.

Oysters at Side Hustle / Photo: Courtesy of Side Hustle

Before reaching my room, I was reminded that as a guest of the hotel I had preferred access to Side Hustle, the not-so-classic British pub inspired by executive chef Ashley Abodeely’s passion for Southern California Mexican-influenced cuisine. Set inside the former Police Station, Side Hustle offers an extensive collection of agave-based cocktails under the direction of bar director Liana Oster, who blends flavors and traditions of Mexico, Europe and America. You may have a michelada made with Two Tribes x Nomad Mexican sour beer with Scotch bonnet pepper, Valentina and white miso, or a more cosmopolitan pandan negroni, cleverly prepared with Tapatio reposado tequila, Campari, Cocchi Vermouth di Torino, coconut water and aromatic pandan.

Pardon Plea cocktail at Side Hustle / Photo: Courtesy of Side Hustle

Superbly designed rooms by the New York firm Roman and Williams give the impression of being larger than they are, even though they are not small. Restored hardwood floors, plush velvet couches in rich colors, custom damask chairs, shimmering Carrara-marble mosaic-tile bathrooms, and refined argan-wood amenities by Bastide create a gracious place for rest.