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Il Giardino

Justin De Souza

When London’s chicest establishments were forced to pivot to al fresco dining in 2020 during the pandemic, The Berkeley acted swiftly. That summer, during the early days of the great post-lockdown reopening, they carved out a slice of pavement on Wilton Place overlooking St Paul’s Church, trussing it up and calling it The Garden. Next year, they became more ambitious, installing the wildly popular Beach Huts, glorious in their celebration of the British seaside, with a seafood menu to match. For 2022, the hotel has looked to the Continent for inspiration, with Italian restaurant Il Giardino providing a little slice of La Dolce Vita in Knightsbridge.

Out are the striped walls and nautical ephemera, in are olive trees and festoon lights. Illustrator Chiara Perano has designed the menus, which feature sweet lemon and gelato sketches, while interiors favourites Ceraudo provide the striped cushions and fabrics. Meanwhile Bettina Ceramica, another Instagram-hit, made the Italian ceramics, which you’ll want to take home with you. On warm days you’ll think you’re actually in Italy (and on cooler days, you’ll be thankful for the sunroof’s rain and wind cover).