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*Assumes posh British accent*
If you're looking for a properly British hotel, you must not look any further. Aside from having a Royal Warrant and from being the host of the Middleton family during the Royal Wedding, The Goring has the largest private garden in London (after the Queen's nearby at Buckingham Palace) which makes for a wonderful retreat from the bustling city. If you know how to play croquet (The lovely Pippa recently gave a tutorial in Vanity Fair), all the better.
Hotel Butlers / Hotel Footmen / Royal Baby Hotels / London Hotels / Belgravia Hotels / Kate MIddleton / Royal Hotels / → All Tags
Forget free champagne; here’s the real corker of a way to celebrate a #royalbaby.
Just in time for the arrival of mini Middleton, the Goring – which is swiftly becoming Kate’s favorite hotel – has introduced some footmen. And not any old footmen, either; an entire fleet of footmen, dressed in scarlet tails and gold-edged waistcoats. Five footmen – one for each of the hotel’s suites. Their job? To minister to your every need and cater to your every whim.
Hotel Renovations / Hotel Reopenings / Hotel Refurbishments / London Hotels / Westminster Hotels / Royal Hotels / → All Tags
Things we never expect to change in London:
The royal family.
The never-ending roadworks.
The inability to make any kind of eye contact on public transport.
That bastion of poshness, the Goring Hotel.
Edit: those were things we never expected to change until this weekend, when we walked past the Goring and found it closed – closed! For the first time in its 105-year history! – for renovation.
The Beeston hat inspired by Belgravia Suite 34 (£795 or $1,325)
The Goring has come up with a plan to save genteel ladies from the embarrassment of having their hat clash with their room's decor by introducing their very own hat collection by British milliner, Gina Foster.
This good news comes in good time for the quintessentially British summer "Season"--the Chelsea Flower Show, Royal Ascot, and plenty of Pimms--so, without further adieu, cue the designs of the The Goring Collection by Gina Foster.
Gainsborough -- This golden beauty was inspired by Room 58 and The Terrace. The hat is covered in the Gainsborough silk that adorns Room 58's walls, and the black ribbon trim mimics the ebonized furniture. And the good news is you'll also go with the décor in The Terrace, with its yellow walls, golden silk curtains and black accents. If you're feeling bold, you can flash a little of Gina's signature hot pink silk lining during a proper Afternoon Tea--so risqué. This smart little number is £750 ($1,250).
Three more winners of their class below!
Up on the Daily Mail's site last week was a story about a Saudi prince who reportedly booked up all three of the Anantara Resorts in the Maldives from now through the middle of March, effectively kicking out any other guests who had reservations during the same time as his stay.
The story originated on MaldivesFinest.com and was moved along by a TripAdvisor review from a guest whose reservation was cancelled because of the resort buy-out.
The rejected guest wrote on TripAdvisor:
Our reservation was cancelled with NO notice and we were informed only AFTER we contacted them. Back in December we booked the Anantara Veli in an overwater pool villa for a four night stay in early March. Three weeks prior to our departure we emailed the Anantara Veli to confirm our airport pick up and a few other details.
As a result of our email to Anantara and a call to our booking agent we finally learned that the hotel had simply cancelled our reservation and, I assume, those of many others. They did this without apprising us of this cancellation.
Here's what Anantara finally told us: In essence they said they now have a booking for the period including 19 February until March 15 which, after negotiations, developed into a request for total private island buyout of Anantara Veli and Naladhu. Not "I'm sorry", not "we should have notified you", not "how can we make it up to you". Just "this is now the situation".
Apparently, the guest was offered accommodations at a different resort but he turned them down.
There’s a headline we never thought we’d write. The fact that we did, and can make a plausible connection between the Windsors, a species of wading birds, and an Irish castle, is due to one thing: a photograph that was taken over a century ago, in 1905 to be exact. We’ll explain.
Back then, Ashford Castle was owned by the Guinness family, which invited the then Prince of Wales to come up to Ireland to hunt. Five months after the “Woodcock Shoot” took place, and the 1905 photograph was taken, the Prince ascended to the British throne as King George V, which makes him the grandfather of QE II, and of course, a few generations on, the ancestor of little Prince George of Cambridge. Earlier this month, Peter Phillips, eldest grandson of Queen Elizabeth, joined a Woodcock shoot to recreate the century-old image and celebrate the upcoming Diamond Jubilee of Ashford Castle.
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London's poshest hotels sure are particular about keeping their guests happy, but we shouldn't be too surprised. This is their, and any other hotel's, #1 rule of business. But now we're getting even more insight as to exactly how these luxe hotels are doing it.
On the heels of the 10 commandments, comes a new set of tips aimed at keeping VIP guests happy. And when we say "VIP", we don't mean someone looking to splash out for a night but rather, heads of state, celebrities and yes, even royals.
David Morgan-Hewitt, the managing director of The Goring Hotel, has given HotelChatter his own personal rules for ensuring that his very, very, very important guests are happy during their stay. We especially love #5 and #6. But don't worry, if you don't fall into the VIG category, just read rule #10.
The Goring's 10 Tips for Keeping VIP Guests Happy
· 1. Make them feel at home. Just because the guest is grand does not mean they are going to want to be in a place that sees itself as grand.
· 2. Know who they are. Do your homework, find out about their likes and dislikes, their hobbies, their family, their work. Anything that you know about them will all help.
· 3. Personalise their stay. Do not just throw standard amenities and service elements at them. Tailor your efforts to things that they will appreciate.
· 4. Talk to them. No matter who you are whether you a Monarch, a President or a film star, you are still a human being.
· 5. Do not allow bad behaviour. Being a VIP or a Royal does not allow you to be rude, insensitive or aggressive. It is very important to start off on the right foot. Sometimes a conversation needs to be had with guests who do not quite get this. We once had a guest here who was feared and loathed by another deluxe hotel because of the way she behaved. From her first stay, she was putty in our hands because she knew the rules and she felt she belonged.
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The Royal Baby, aka son of the Prince William and Kate Middleton (or more properly, the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge), arrived yesterday at 4:24pm weighing eight pounds and six ounces and reportedly sporting more hair than Wills.
Called "The Royal Toast", the drink is a champagne cocktail created by International Bartender of The Year Alex Kratena that combines Tapatio tequila, cedar wood syrup, lemon juice and Peychaud’s bitters with Ruinart blanc de blancs. The drink is then served in a coupe wrapped in a scented blue crepe paper. It costs £16.50 and will be served only until August 22nd. Meanwhile, rates upstairs at the hotels start around $365 a night.
[Photo: The Langham London]
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Oh, who are we kidding? We're sure St. Regis Hotels and their polo team, captained by hunky Nacho Figueras, let Prince Harry and his Sentebale Land Rover team win the match with a final tally of 4-3. After all, the
hot ginger Prince Harry even scored the winning goal.
The polo match took place last week as part of the Royal Salute Sentebale Polo Cup at the Greenwich Polo Club in Connecticut. The match was the opener to the polo season and it's primary goal was not to give us pictures of Prince Harry and Nacho together but rather to raise awareness and support for healthcare and education of the children of Lesotho, Africa.
Several other St. Regis Connoisseurs came to cheer the St. Regis team on--which includes Dawn Jones (wife of Tommy Lee Jones)--such as fashion designer Jason Wu, Starwood’s SVP Brand Management Dave Marr, Greenwich Polo Club Co-Founder Peter Brant and Stephanie Seymour, Nacho's wife Delfina Blaquier (pictured above), model Karolina Kurkova and Olivia Palermo.
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Places like The Goring, The Stafford and Park Plaza Hotels were all quick to join in the royal wedding mania that took place two summers ago, but here's one hotel that seems to be starting a new trend: royal baby mania.
London's Grosvenor House has chosen to re-decorate one of its Premium Park suites in anticipation of Kate Middleton and Prince William's firstborn. Not that, like, the baby is actually planning to stay there (at this moment, it can't even digest its own food, so we don't see how it could be making hotel reservations…), but, you know, just in case.
"Suite Dreams" is a fully-equipped nursery, with a luxurious four-poster crib, hand-painted furniture, Beatrix Potter-inspired designs, and a children's play area with a London-themed toy cupboard.
The whole thing is pretty impressive, actually, though no surprise there, as Daily Mail tells us the suite was actually designed by Dragons of Walton Street, a studio that's created nurseries for the Royal Family in the past.
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London's Goring Hotel may have recently received a seal of approval with its Royal Warrant (gosh, we're still having a hard time with that name), but the InterContinental London Park Lane has its own special royal nod of recognition, too.
Sitting on the site of Queen Elizabeth II’s former childhood residence on Piccadilly, the hotel has just unveiled its Royal Suite, with queenly design elements tastefully scattered throughout, and a view over the Royal Parks, no doubt filled with Royal Squirrels. Heh.
Like most things royal, this suite is a bit complicated. We'll explain. But first, how about some photo gawking?
This hotel received an official "thumbs up" from the Queen.
Despite our initial pause about the term "Royal Warrant", no one at The Goring Hotel in London's swank Belgravia nabe is getting arrested. Rather, the Royal Warrant decree establishes the hotel as the Royal Family's "official favorite hotel of choice." It's the first time ever the Queen has bestowed the award on a hotel.
Not that we needed some fancy schmancy decoration from the Queen to understand how much the Royal Family loves the spot. After all, this is where Kate spent her last night as a commoner in the hotel's top floor suites. It's also where several of the royals retreated post-nuptials to let their hair down and have some real fun. Perhaps too much fun in Prince Harry's case. But the hotel isn't just a joint for stuffy royals. In fact, a pretty sexy bridal lingerie photoshoot inspired by Kate also happened at the hotel in 2011.