Venue Review: The Ritz Hotel, London
The Ritz Hotel, London - W1J 9BR
A few months back the good people at The Ritz Hotel kindly invited us for lunch and a tour of the hotel, well who were we to say no? There are scarce few hotels in the world that can claim a greater stake than The Ritz’s as a shaper of history. It’s played host and home to many of the worlds great and good. It’s hosted royal weddings, wartime summits for Churchill & Eisenhower, numerous high society scandals, and of course it was the final home of Margaret Thatcher.
Opened in 1906 by hotelier Cesar Ritz the hotel sits in prime position bordering Piccadilly & Green Park. If you’re not a fan of Louis XVI architecture and design then you may want to forego visiting. The place embodies the awe-inspiring decadence of that period with sky high ceilings, impressive frescos, intricate carvings, show stopping chandeliers and more gold leaf than in Katie Price’s living room. Going there today it’s difficult to imagine that during the 70’s demand for the hotel fell so low that their occupancy rates were 45%, it’s absolutely bustling. People of all backgrounds from across the world flood in for the 5, fully booked, sittings of afternoon tea every day.
For those wanting to host a special event The Ritz offers a selection of intimate spaces, the majority of which are in the William Kent House, a Palladian style town house which backs on to Green Park. The house was purchased by the current owners in 1998, 100 years after the original owners attempted to buy it, and converted into private dining spaces, winning a coveted RIBA gold medal in the process. The Music Room is the largest space, accommodating dinners of 72 or board meetings for 30. For those wanting a special private dining experience for up to 24 guests the centrepiece of the house is the William Kent room with it’s splendid Renaissance style interior, views across Green Park and access to the William Kent Garden, a superb place for summer drinks receptions. In the main hotel the Marie Antoinette room lies just off of the restaurant and can take receptions of up to 100 and dinners for 50.
In terms of costs it, naturally, doesn’t come cheap however, when you take into account the history, service levels and quality of the product that you receive. In fact all things considered, for a special occasion, it’s pretty good value!The stunning William Kent suite set for private dining at The Ritz Hotel, London
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