Sunday, May 23, 2010

The most wonderful hotel in the world

Okay, maybe overstating it a little, but not by much...

I finally achieved a dream of mine. I booked a night at one of my favorite all time London spots. Claridge's. Ah....Paradise in Mayfair. Or pretty damn close to it.

From the porter(they aren't bellboys here) to the concierge to the two bartenders everyone was concerned about my well being. The doorman, who is dressed in a coat with tails and a top hat asked me if I was checking in. They took my luggage into the hotel by it's own door. A hidden luggage door! At the reception desk they sped me through the process. Claridge's doesn't have that 'No we can't check you in until 2.' that you see in other hotels. A room was ready. I got a tour. I made it to my room at the same time as my bags. There's a couch in the elevator! And an elevator operator.

The room itself is sublime. Small yes, but it's not like I am throwing a dinner party in it, (but they will do for you if you want.) There's laundry services, wireless, modem hook-ups, a high speed wireless port. At the real wooden desk they have an outlet plug for 110v and 220v. Both UK and US. I didn't even NEED an adapter for the laptop. To charge it. I love this place.

The closets are just amazing. There are drawers with leather handles. A safe for my valuables, And all fully mirrored.

The bathroom is a place I want to live. Marble. Black and white of course. Being art deco. Best tub I've seen in ever! Heated towel racks, wonderful toiletries...a phone and two marble shelves. Plus a shaving mirror. I never knew my pores were that big. But let me tell you putting on makeup is a snap with that baby.
I can swim in the tub. And it fills so fast....almost had a little overflow...
But the marble surround caught most of it. There are two showers in the tub. One is that particular British innovation a hand held shower hose. Which makes it great for rinsing your hair. The other is pure heaven in a bathtub. A rainfall shower head. As wide as a dinner plate. Luxury indeed. They have floor length terry robes with the hotel's signature C in gold. And slippers!

But what blows my mind is I have a doorbell. For my hotel room. I don't even have one at my house!
And 4 buttons. One for the maid, one for the waiter, one for the valet and one for privacy. Turns on a light on the doorbell that the staff know I don't want to be disturbed. Amazing.
Larry and I were very happy here. I knew when I had come for tea that it was a place I wanted to live when I grow up. Now that I have experienced Claridge's for myself in full measure, I know we were meant for each other.

Went to dinner at the Claridge's bar. Lovely. Great food. Butternut squash soup, roasted duck breast with potatos and greens, seared halibut with goji berries and lentils and foie gras with figs. Yum doesn't begin to describe it. And a pear and hazelnut dessert. Little rolled up tubes of carmalized sugar with hazelnut crème. YUM squared. Oh and I had a mojito royale. Mojito with champagne and of course the amazing Marco Polo tea with dessert. Found out that it's supplied by Mariage Freres tea company of Paris. No wonder I love it. High end luxury tea. My mom taught me well. Thanks!
Great guys at the bar. Very entertaining and talk about talented. It was like watching theatre. Flirted with them and vice versa. Part of their job.
Met someone from the Kuwait investment group. Even got a business card. He wanted to know if I know some guy from Morgan Stanley. No, sadly. But very nice and courteous. People there always are. I think it's the atmosphere of pure civility.

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