Ive lived in London since leaving school, and for the past seven years, Ive been creating my own concept of sustainable, affordable luxury in my hotels in Kensington, Soho and Liverpool. Come Friday, its a struggle to leave my office unless Ive arranged to meet a friend for a drink. When we opened our latest hotel, The Nadler Soho, below (10 Carlisle Street, London W1D 3BR, 020 3697 3697, thenadler.com/soho.shtml), in June 2013, I launched myself on a journey of re-discovery of Soho. I used to live just on its borders, and now my office is off Jermyn Street, so just a hop away.
Ill often start at Archer Street (3-4 Archer Street, London W1D 7AP, 0207 734 3342, archerstreet.co.uk). At 7pm on a Friday, I prefer the living room comfort of the ground floor bar to the late night atmosphere downstairs. There I can enjoy the cocktails and listen to the talented staff bursting into song (Archer Streets Got talent is on Tuesday, Feb 25).
For a quieter start to Friday, Ill stop off at The Society Club, above (12 Ingestre Place, London W1F 0JF, 0207 4371433, thesocietyclubsoho.wordpress.com), a cocktail bar/ café/ bookshop /gallery, and perfect if Im on my own, as I can browse the books or chat to Babette, its creator and soul, or locals who have lived in Soho for ever.
Across the road is Bob Bob Ricard, below (1 Upper James Street, London W1F 9DF, 0203 145 1000, bobbobricard.com), one of Sohos more glamorous dining spots, and one of my wife, Clarissas, favourites, with its eclectic British/Russian menu and British/Russian owners, Richard and Bob/Leonid.
Alternatively (and I always have an alternative in Soho, as its so busy), Ill drop into Polpo, below (41 Beak Street, London W1F 9SB, 0207 734 4479, polpo.co.uk). You cant book in the evening, but a drink in the bar first isnt a hardship, and the Venetian bacari (dont say tapas, or owner Russell Norman wont speak to you) are well worth the wait.
Since opening The Nadler, most Saturdays are spent there. Ill usually stop off at Princi, below (135 Wardour Street, London W1F 0UT, 0207 478 8888, princi.com), for breakfast, where the focaccia is the best this side of Milan, and I dont know where they get their oranges, but they make the sweetest OJ anywhere.
Lunch will probably be udon noodles at Koya (49 Frith Street, London W1D 4SG, 0207 434 4463, koya.co.uk), or Martin Morales incomparable Ceviche (17 Frith Street, London W1D 4RG, 0207 292 2040, cevicheuk.com) - remember the back-up plan rule! This great Peruvian alternative to sushi feeds my need for regular helpings of raw fish.
If Im with my son, Hayden, Ill have to hit the shops in Soho. That means Footpatrol (80 Berwick Street, London W1F 8TU, 0207 287 8094, footpatrol.co.uk), to check out if any exclusive sneakers have arrived youll know by the queue, as long as the one outside Breakfast Club. Then were on to Supreme (2/3 Peter Street, London W1F 0AA, 0207 437 0493, supremenewyork.com), to see whats new in their clothing line-up, or to Machine-A (13 Brewer Street, London W1F 0RH, 0207 734 4334, machine-a.com) for some looks and brands you wont find anywhere else.
Dinner in Soho means planning ahead or queuing. For the former, I love the theatrical atmosphere in Sam and Eddy Harts Quo Vadis (26-29 Dean Street, London W1D 3LL, 0207 437 9585, quovadissoho.co.uk), where the wonderful Jeremy Lee will always surprise you with something unusual from his kitchen, or The Social Eating House, below (58 Poland Street, London W1F 7N, 0207 993 3251, socialeatinghouse.com) for the theatre in Paul Hoods kitchen, which you can enjoy and feel part of when you sit at the chefs table. Its wonderful cuisine and entertainment all at once.
If you love the stage, as I do, you cant beat our own Soho Theatre (21 Dean Street, London W1D 3NE, 0207 478 0100, sohotheatre.com), where the variety of shows in its three performance spaces means theres always something I want to see.
When Hayden joins us for dinner, it has to be sushi. Hes been eating in Shogun (Adam's Row, London, W1K 2HP, 0207 493 1255, millenniumhotels.co.uk/millenniummayfair/dining/shogun.html) since he was three. Hiromi, the mamma san, is such a wonderful hostess, wed go there even if the sushi werent the best in London.
Later I might drop by Archers again to catch some of the theatre crews joining the team and performing something from a show, or I may head upstairs to the club at Quo Vadis for a nightcap.
Sundays tend to be lazy days at home in Chelsea, but we usually go for a walk in Hyde Park, where we now have two Serpentine Galleries to choose from. The art is usually provocative, and Ill find myself liking works and artists I had sworn I never would. I love the space that Zaha Hadid has created for The Magazine Restaurant (West Carriage Drive, Kensington Gardens, London W2 2AR, 0207 298 7552, serpentinegalleries.org/restaurant), and I cant wait for summer to try dinner there.
If we dont have lunch at home, we may go to Cacciari (82 Old Brompton Road, London SW7 3LQ, 0207 052 9046, cacciaris.co.uk) for something light, with Italys Serie A on all the TVs and a very partisan crowd commentating on each play. Its a great atmosphere. If we feel carnivorous, well head next door to Maxela (84 Old Brompton Road, London SW7 3LQ, 0207 589 5834, maxela.co.uk), where the steaks are as good as Ive had
Im usually raring to head out for dinner at our regular local haunt, Eight Over Eight (392 King's Rd, London SW3 5UZ, 0207 349 9934, rickerrestaurants.com), where Clinton always ensures we have a table, however busy they are. Even if fusion food is no longer the latest hot cuisine, they do it so well that I never tire of the menu, and the atmosphere in both the bar and restaurant is as much Soho as Chelsea, so I feel right at home.
Robert Nadler is the CEO of base2stay, now Nadler Hotels, with properties in Liverpool, Soho and Kensington