Private Tour

Flemings Hotel's Dangerous Pleasures: Glamour and Deception in Literary Mayfair

Step into the glittering heart of elite Britain - a world of extravagance, easy money, and scandalous fun.

Things to know


2 hrs

Suitable for:

Couples, Friends, History Buffs, Intellectually Curious

Private Tour:

You and our own professional guide. 100% exclusive

Tickets included:

No tickets required. 

Type of tour:

This is a walking tour - no transport is required.

Other inclusions:

Themed cocktail inspired by the tour at Manetta's Bar
Meeting points: Fleming's Mayfair Hotel lobby

What makes this tour special

Mayfair has long been the glittering heart of elite life in Britain. For centuries it has been the home of London Society - a place of palaces, elegant townhouses, grand hotels and stylish apartments drawing to it the fashionable, wealthy, and aspirational.

Long known as a home for rich bachelors, the Flemings Hotel Mayfair is the beginning of your private tour into London’s social elite and literary scene. The careers of two famous writers who lived here, James Boswell and Henry James, took off at this address. As you leave the hotel, your guide will introduce the world of Oscar Wilde, who set The Importance of Being Earnest, his comedy of Edwardian social manners not far from the hotel. 

A few streets on, Wilde’s arguably most famous work is discussed, as the area was home to one of the book’s central figures. The Picture of Dorian Gray - a tale of beauty and corruption amid the gilded world of elite London also gives insight into Wilde’s own life - one of brilliance amid the sexual underworld of late Victorian London. 

Your tour unfolds with equally salacious stories of the area’s residents including Evelyn Waugh, Beau Brummel, and Lord Roseberry, the Liberal Prime Minister - who is notorious for his rumoured links to the infamous fall of Oscar Wilde. From tales of the hi-jinx amongst the privileged youth of interwar England to murderous infidelity, the streets of Mayfair have long played host to bubbling scandal. 

Your tour winds down exploring the square splashed with gentlemen’s clubs of old and the area’s links to Sherlock Holmes. As you wander back to Flemings Hotel Mayfair, enjoy a lively discussion with your guide about how this historic, gilded facade of a neighborhood was simultaneously the backdrop to savage social competition and desperate insecurity. A place where reputation was all, and where words - an angry letter or an ill-judged snub - could mean ruin. Upon return to the hotel, enjoy a themed cocktail  inspired by the tour. 

Please note: children under the age of 14 are not allowed in Manetta's Bar after the tour. 

What you'll see

Buckingham Palace
Buckingham Palace is the home of the Queen. One of London’s most popular attractions, it offers more than meets the eye.


QWill there be other people on the tour or is it just us?
AAll of our tours are 100% private and exclusive, which means that it will just be you, your group and your guide on the tour.

Your tour will be completely tailored to your needs and we will make sure to find a guide that best suits your group.
QAre entrance tickets and transport included in the cost of the tour?
AIn the ‘Things to Know’ section at the top of this page you will find details of whatever entrance tickets and transport are included in the tour. If you have any questions about this, then you can either use the chat button in the bottom right hand corner, send an email to <team@travelcurious.com> or call 1-212-710-1322 (US) or +44 20 3009 2392 (UK).
QWhat is your cancellation policy?
AOn tours cancelled more than 48 hours before the scheduled departure time, we are happy to offer our customers a full refund - minus a 5% credit card fee and the cost of any tickets that have been purchased.

For tours cancelled less than 48 hours before the scheduled departure time, we are unfortunately unable to offer refunds. If you would like to reschedule a tour, this is usually possible if we are given enough notice, but we cannot guarantee the same guide.

Changes made to bookings may be subject to rebooking fees to cover the cost of tickets purchased, transport, guide rescheduling and administration.

To cancel or change your booking, please contact us at <team@travelcurious.com> or call 1-212-710-1322 (US) or +44 20 3009 2392 (UK).
QWho do I contact if I have any questions about this tour or if I want to make changes to my tour?
AAt Travel Curious, we provide a free concierge service to help you plan your time abroad and they will be able to answer any questions you may have about this tour or any other tours. We are normally able to customise or personalise tours to suit your needs.

Please do get in touch by either using the chat button in the bottom right hand corner, sending an email to <hello@tourioicity.com> or calling 1-212-710-1322 (US) or +44 20 3009 2392 (UK).
QAm I able to book more than one tour?
AAbsolutely, you can book as many tours as you like! You can add them to your cart by clicking the ‘Book Now’ button or you can get in touch and we can put together an itinerary for you. To get in touch, you can either use the chat button in the bottom right hand corner, send an email to <team@travelcurious.com> or call 1-212-710-1322 (US) or +44 20 3009 2392 (UK).

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