The Principal

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When the Hotel Russell opened in 1898, it fast became the talk of town for its grand terracotta façade. In recent years, the Grade II-listed property has been in a sad state of decline, but happily, it has just emerged from a lavish overhaul of its interiors. 

Designers Tara Bernard and Russell Sage have modernised the 334-room pleasure dome, now renamed The Principal, with a dose of creamy drapery, tufted fabric, and artwork that is meant to evoke the neighbourhood’s Bloomsbury artistic and literary heritage. 

The restored Palm Court is once more a light-washed aerie, while chef Brett Redman’s perch in Neptune restaurant sports a raw bar, and an aquatic menu speckled with Exmoor caviar, Isle of Mull scallops, and cured chalk stream trout served with mole-spiced beetroot.