Inside the private hospital that treats the royal family

GettyQueen leaves King Edward VII’s Hospital after being admitted with symptoms of gastroenteritis in 2013.
  • Prince Philip was recently discharged from hospital after a hip replacement operation.
  • The hospital – King Edward VII’s in Marylebone – has nursed the royal family for generations.
  • We decided to take a look inside of what promises to be “London’s foremost private hospital.”

Nestled in an inconspicuous street in Marylebone, London, there is a hospital. From the outside, the building exudes subtle grandeur – but not enough to turn heads.

This is no ordinary hospital, though. It is King Edward VII’s Hospital, which describes itself as “London’s foremost private hospital.”

For many years, King Edward VII’s has played nurse to a very special group of patients: The royal family.

96-year-old Prince Philip was recently discharged from the hospital after a successful hip operation.

It is also where the Queen had knee surgery and where Kate Middleton was treated for morning sickness. Princess Margaret died in this building.

Clearly, the hospital occupies a special place in the hearts of Britain’s monarchy, but why?

Comprising of just 56 beds and boasting more than four nurses to every patient, King Edward VII’s promises “dedicated, individual attention.”

Scroll on to take a tour of the hospital that gets the royal seal of approval.


Welcome to King Edward VII’s Hospital. Here, police stand guard outside the premises as Prince Philip, inside, recovers from a hip operation.


The Prince received plenty of gifts from well-wishers during his stay, from chocolates…


…to large bouquets of flowers.


There’s always a strong media presence camped outside the hospital whenever a royal is admitted.


The 96-year-old Prince managed to flash a smile as he left the hospital.


The hospital was established in 1899 to treat injured soldiers fighting in the Second Boer War. Over a century later, it is still open to British Army personnel who receive a 20% discount on treatments or can apply for grants to cover the entire cost.

Source: KCW Today.


Here’s the entrance without security. Step inside “London’s foremost private hospital.”

Ideal Insight / Google Maps

The reception is fittingly smart. Stained glass windows and an open fireplace provide the backdrop, while a receptionist outfitted in a waistcoat and tie admits patients and visitors.

Ideal Insight / Google Maps

Just down the corridor from reception is the well-stocked library, which would look more fitting in a private members’ club than a hospital.

Ideal Insight / Google Maps

In 1963, the library was the location of Prime Minister Harold MacMillan’s resignation to Queen Elizabeth II.

Ideal Insight / Google Maps

Source: King Edward VII’s Hospital.


Let’s first descend into the hospital’s basement, to the physiotherapy and hydrotherapy areas. The physiotherapy centre offers pilates, acupuncture, sports massages, and much more.

Ideal Insight / Google Maps

Source: King Edward VII’s Hospital patient booklet.


Not many hospitals have swimming pools. King Edward VII’s purpose-built hydrotherapy pool is one of the few in London — it’s heated to a snug 34 degrees celsius.

Ideal Insight / Google Maps

Source: King Edward VII’s Hospital patient booklet.


Back upstairs, here is a typical ward room at King Edward VII’s. The hospital boasts a nurse to patient ratio of 1:4.5, so patients receive “dedicated, individual attention.”

Ideal Insight / Google Maps

Each air-conditioned room has a walk-in shower, wall-mounted TV, and room service.

Ideal Insight / Google Maps

Source: King Edward VII’s Hospital patient booklet.


Many of the rooms feel fairly standard, though. This waiting room has the bland, cramped style of many NHS hospitals.

Ideal Insight / Google Maps

Perhaps one of King Edward VII’s greatest advantages is the restaurant-quality food it serves. The menu on this bedside table might include sustainable and ethicallycaught fish, sourced in Devon and Cornwall, as well as Argyle smoked salmon, shellfish, and luxury prawns from the west of Scotland, according to the brochure.

Ideal Insight / Google Maps

Source: King Edward VII’s Hospital patient booklet.


Guests are even served afternoon tea at 3.15 p.m. in the afternoon and a nighttime drink at 8.15 p.m.

Ideal Insight / Google Maps

Source: King Edward VII’s Hospital patient booklet.


Naturally, this luxury doesn’t come cheap, and the hospital reaps the rewards of treating high-profile clients. According to the Financial Times, the hospital receives a revenue of £347,000 per bed, every year. Across the hospital’s 56 beds, that’s an overall income of nearly £19.5 million a year — not including the four-bed critical care unit.

Ideal Insight / Google Maps

Source: Financial Times.


In 2012, King Edward VII’s Hospital made headlines for a prank phone call made by Australian radio DJs. The radio hosts called the hospital and, by imitating Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Charles, were able to obtain confidential information regarding the Duchess of Cambridge’s treatment, who was suffering from acute morning sickness at the time.

Ideal Insight / Google Maps

Source: The Telegraph.


Despite the misstep, the hospital has maintained its reputation and the Queen last visited in 2013. It’s the first time in 10 years that the Queen had to be taken to hospital — and she emerged all smiles.

Warrick Page / Stringer / Getty

Source: The Guardian.

NOW WATCH: Briefing videos

Business Insider Emails & Alerts

Site highlights each day to your inbox.

Follow Business Insider Australia on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Instagram.