Iconic 200-year-old London hotel The Connaught has added an art and wine enclave known as The Red Room to its stable of world-class bars and restaurants. The Mayfair property’s eponymous bar has been ranked among the world’s top drinking establishments for the past decade, and grabbed the number one ranking from World’s 50 Best Bars last year.
The Red Room opened late last month and is named for its impressive collection of red artworks from four female creators. Pieces include works by Louise Bourgeois, Jenny Holzer, Ti-a Thuy Nguyen, and Trina McKillen, lovingly curated by Paddy McKillen, co-owner of Maybourne Hotel Group.
Prominently displayed above the central marble fireplace is “I Am Rouge,” a watercolor, gouache, and pencil piece by French American artist Louise Bourgeois. Across from this, guests can admire the oil painting “Scarlet Mist” by Vietnamese artist Ti-a Thuy Nguyen, who sold her painting to McKillen at the 2018 Red Auction in Miami, with all proceeds going toward fighting AIDS in Africa. On yet another wall sits California-based photographer Trina McKillen’s “Composition #8.” Finally, guests gaze upon New York-based Jenny Holzer’s “Benghazi” graphite and watercolor modification of previously censored U.S. government documents.
And while you’re enjoying all that vermillion beauty, you can also immerse yourself in Bryan O’Sullivan’s beautifully designed space. The man behind a variety of Maybourne’s drinking spots (he designed The Berkeley Bar & Terrace and The Painter’s Room), O’Sullivan created the space as a “home within a home” with the feel of a collector’s living room – the “ultimate sanctuary in magnificent Mayfair,” decrees the brand.
Wine is the beating heart of The Red Room. The bar boasts an impressive list that has been years in the making and is overseen by Daniel Manetti, Director of Wine. The Connaught’s legendary wine cellar features over 3000 different labels and over 30,000 bottles, and this collection will be showcased in this new space. A new Coravin system makes it possible to serve astonishing wines – from rare vintages to first growths – by the glass. Iconic reds include a 1994 Petrus (the most famous Merlot in the world) and a 2011 Richebourg Grand Cru by the legendary Domaine de la Romanée-Conti – of which The Connaught has an impressive collection. The world’s most famous Chardonnay – a 2016 Montrachet Grand Cru, produced by Domaine Thenard – is also available to drink by the glass, alongside a 2018 Sauvignon Blanc from the esteemed Eisele Vineyards in the Napa Valley, one of the most celebrated vineyards in the US.
Two custom made trolleys – made from the same marble as the fireplace – have been crafted to decanter and serve wine, and guests are able to visit the hotel’s wine cellar to explore.
A capsule list of six cocktails has been created by Agostino Perrone, Director of Mixology, inspired by the bar’s wine selection, and will change seasonally as the wine list evolves. Each cocktail features the wine that it is named after, with ‘Red’ and ‘White’ set to be The Red Room’s signature tipples.
A menu of charcuterie – featuring British cheeses and hand-carved hams – and small plates, including veal carpaccio, Gochuchang chicken oysters and kale tempura, has been designed to complement the wine list.
Affirming The Connaught’s status as one of London’s top destinations for bar and drink aficionados, the Red Room becomes the fourth bar at the hotel, joining The Connaught Bar – the world’s best bar – the intimate Coburg Bar overlooking Carlos Place and the elegant hideaway, The Champagne Room.
The Red Room has 50 covers and opening hours are 4pm – midnight, Wednesday – Saturday. To book yourself a table or simply to get more information, head over to the bar’s official webpage.
Earlier this month, The Cigar and Whiskey Bar opened at The Maybourne Beverly Hills and has instantly become the area’s go-to spot for a luxurious after-dinner drink. The new bar operates in the space previously run by the Ten Pound bar, located above Terrace at Maybourne (formerly Scarpetta, Georgie).