For kids who adore Roald Dahl’s magical stories, and parents who fancy an indulgent minibreak, One Aldwych are ticking the boxes with their new A Stay of Pure Imagination family package. Junior checked in for a gloriously Dahlesque sleepover, including sampling the re-launched Charlie and the Chocolate Factory afternoon tea and a very special private film screening.

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Checking in for a Golden Ticket Sleepover

Situated smack-bang in the heart of Covent Garden, One Aldwych offers a five-star sanctuary amidst the hustle and bustle of London. Our Willy Wonker themed adventure began as soon as we stepped into the grand lobby and were whisked off for a private screening of Tim Burton’s whimsical Charlie and the Chocolate Factory movie. One Aldwych boasts its own dinky 30-seater cinema, where you can relax in plush leather seats and snack on boxes of homemade popcorn.

Classic Screenings: The cinema at One Aldwych, London

Having brushed up on our knowledge of Charlie Bucket and the Oompa Loompas, we made our way up to our pastel-hued suite where Roald Dahl books and miniature bottles of chocolate milkshakes were awaiting the children (cue lots of excited squeals!).

One A Charlie

Our suite, with fantastic views of Waterloo Bridge, was so spacious that the kids even had their own living room! Sadly, there was no lickable wallpaper; but he hotel had included thoughtful touches such as little robes and slippers on their outrageously comfortable beds. And throughout the hotel the staff actively went out of their way to make the children feel at home, creating a genuinely welcoming atmosphere.

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One A Charlie Room
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Having soaked up the views and slurped up the chocolate milk, it was time for a dip in the hotel’s 18-metre basement swimming pool. It’s a tranquil, hidden gem of a pool with zen lighting and a relaxation area that includes a sauna and steam room. And best of all, it’s a chlorine-free pool so you won’t leave smelling of filthsome chemicals.

A Scrumdiddlyumptious Afternoon Tea

Drum roll please – it was now time for the main event! The Willy Wonker themed afternoon tea at One Aldwych’s Eneko Basque restaurant has been pleasing London families and visitors for the past few years. But they’ve really outdone themselves with their freshly unveiled, revamped Charlie and the Chocolate Factory tea, which cranks up the wow-factor to flying glass elevator levels.

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For starters there’s a selection of splendid savouries, featuring salmon and beetroot macarons and an exquisite cucumber sarnie. Alongside the adult’s afternoon tea (£52 per person) the restaurant also offers a children’s tea (£42 per person) with a modified savoury selection, including roly-poly sandwiches.

Next, it’s time for the scrumptious sweets selection, including scones with snozzberry jam, violet marshmallows and some fabulously flamboyant candyfloss (dentists, beware!). For the grand finale, we washed our chocolatier feast down with mocktail concoctions that dramatically exhaled puffs of dry-ice smoke.

The whole experience was wonderfully theatrical and most definitely worthy of a visit in its own right.

High tea One A

READ MORE: Children’s Afternoon Tea in London: Our top places to try

Breakfast with a View

Included in the A Stay of Pure Imagination package is an extensive breakfast, which can be taken either in the hotel’s restaurant or inside your guest suite. We opted for in-room dining, because let’s face it; it makes for a more relaxing dining experience with young kids in tow!

The menu has plenty of choices, from a hearty full English breakfast to the health-conscious avocado on toast, fresh juices and cereals for children. The breakfast trolley, dressed in a crisp linin cloth, is set up so you can soak up the views of London while sipping your tea. Naturally, there’s also hot chocolate on tap for the kids!

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The Low Down

For a literary themed minibreak with a big slice of luxury, One Aldwych’s new A Stay of Pure Imagination is an absolute treat for parents and a splendiferous way for children to fall in love with Roald Dahl’s classic book. Read here to see why we love Charlie Bucket.

Good to Know:

  • Four-legged friends are also warmly welcomed at One Aldwych. Canine guests can stay the night at no extra charge and will be provided with a Bow Wow London bed and bowl whilst in residence, plus treats to take home.
  • Dairy and gluten-free guests are catered for in the hotel’s Indigo restaurant, which has a big emphasis on seasonal ingredients.
Junior Fact Box: One Aldwych 

Family stays in a classic bedroom start from £505 per night on a B&B basis.

The Charlie and the Chocolate Factory Afternoon Tea is open Wednesday – Sunday 12pm to 4pm and Priced from £52 per adult and £42 per child under 12 years old. Visit here to book

A Stay of Pure Imagination package starts from £925 per night in a classic suite. For more information please visit: