Who has the classiest Christmas tree display in London?
At the most fashionable addresses, all eyes are on the Christmas tree display. London is putting on a jaw-dropping show of festive firs this year
London's most exclusive addresses have Christmas trees designed by artists and designers. Here, we've rounded up the most exciting Christmas decoration displays, from Karl Lagerfield at Claridges to Tracey Emin at The Connaught. Who decked it best?
Contemporary Christmas: London's Christmas trees 2017
Chanel's Karl Lagerfield has collaborated with Claridge's on their stylish lobby Christmas trees. Lagerfield's tree is a tribute to his childhood in Germany, "Christmas trees are the strongest ‘souvenir’ of my happy childhood," he says: who knew there was such a sentimental man behind the dark glasses? Lagerfield follows the festive footsteps of Dior, D&G and McQueen, who have all designed trees for the hotel.
We have a soft spot for this wacky Christmas tree by duo Joanne Tatham & Tom O'Sullivan from The Modern Institute. You can find it fitting nicely into the yuppie terriotory behind King's Cross. The colourful loudhailers broadcasts music across Granary Square. But is it as good as last year's Granary Square tree, which was encased in a block of ice?
The Shard has spawned! Seemingly created of lots of mini glass skyscrapers, this fragile-looking tree on the 31st floor doesn't have to worry about birds flying into it so much as having a glass nicked by diners at the Aqua Shard restaurant. The effect of this sparkling spruce comes from 245 glass pendant lights by Lee Broom and glass brand Nude.
It wouldn't be a Tracey Emin Christmas Tree if it wasn't decked in neon. Emin's trademark scrawl wraps the spruce at The Connaught hotel in a heartfelt poem. Need a transcription? 'What I give to you is all I have/ An open wanting/ Deep in the layers of my heart/ And in return I catch/ Your smile/ The greatest gift of all'.
Nobu's origami tree is as stylish as its dishes. The origami comes courtesy of Papershake, and is made from shoji paper – the same material that makes traditional screens, which is good news for its structural integrity as the whole creation stands three metres tall. The design is a fitting tribute to the restaurant and it's newly-opened hotel's Japanese heritage.
Designer Es Devlin has worked with everyone from Kanye West to the Royal Opera House on impressive, kinetic displays that make great centrepieces. She created The Singing Tree for the V&A this year, a 'tree' of floating words. The tree uses machine learning to create its own songs using the vocabulary supplied to it by visitors to the museum. If you're fed up of hearing 'Jingle Bells' for the 100th time, this is the tree for you. It probably hasn't learnt how to sing that one yet.
Once again this year, Puttin' on the Ritz is taken seriously in St James. The Louis XVI interior has been transformed into a Nordic wonderland with its 25 feet tall tree. The deluxe hotel has stayed true to form with its traditional red and gold decorations through the rotunda and first floor. The Long Gallery is decked out with smaller versions of the Nordic Pine and festive wreaths.
Follow your nose to The Savoy in Covent Garden this year, where they've teamed up with London perfume house Penhaligon's to deliver a traditional Victorian Christmas. Breathe in the festive theme in the delicately scented halls, courtesy of Penhaligon's seasonal perfumes. The front hall's showstopper will be an elegant tree.
Tasked with decorating the Ace Hotel in Shoreditch in time for Christmas, Modern Design Review eschewed a traditional tree for something more natural. They enlisted cinematographer Sebastian Ziegler to produce a short film that celebrates the beauty of spruces in the wild. His film is a 'portrait of a single beautiful tree in a snowy landscape'. The scene, greeting guests from a screen as they walk in, is a contemplative addition to the popular East London hotel's busy lobby.
Inspired by the magic of its Theatreland setting, One Aldwych, Covent Garden, decorated its tree with scenes inspired by West End shows. Theatre nuts, keep your eyes peeled in the lobby for nods to your favourite musicals – they won't be hard to spot. With a 25 foot tall tree decked resplendently in red and gold, subtlety won't be on the agenda. The hotel's florist, Mark Siredzuk spent 300 hours and used 7,200 LED lights to make this Christmas Tree worthy of a grand finale.
St Pancras International
We love the tree at St Pancras. It can be enjoyed by everyone who passes through the station. Its sheer scale is phenomenal - it's 47 feet, made up of 15,000 flowers and took 1,151 hours to create (compare that to One Aldwych, above). Lastly, it's very, very pretty, created by the station's florist Moyses Stevens. This massive tree is the epitome of Christmas. All aboard the sentimental express!