How does a new London hotel gain credence with the five-star crowd in an off-centre location far from the capital's buzz? By ramping up the glamour quotient - something the Israeli-owned Plaza on the River has managed in spades.
Walking into my one-bedroom suite (it is an all-suite hotel within the Park Plaza Riverbank), I was dazzled by a floor to ceilng view of the Houses of Parliament, London Eye and Tate Britain. My bedroom, like the living-room, opened on to a balcony with table and chairs perfect for river-gazing while sipping a coffee from the Nespresso machine. Toaster, microwave, hob, fridge and washing machine are also installed in these suites - a good solution for those with a baby or children who can share the living-room sofabed.
But even those preferring self-catering would want to eat at least one dinner in buzzy Chino Latino. Cuisine here, despite the name, is Japanese, with black cod, sushi and tempura as well as western dishes. This restaurant is a lot classier than the breakfast room, where too many businesspeople are herded into a claustrophobic space, though the scrambled eggs were perfectly cooked, in spite of the steam table set-up.
Rooms are as elegant as one would expect at this price, but despite the five-star bathroom (this one had a superb wet room shower and oversized bathtub) there was no hook for a bathrobe. I would also expect premium toiletries rather than the basic contract brand supplied.
TEL: 020 7958 8000