It was where the Duchess of Cambridge chose to spend the night before her wedding and it’s just been awarded its first Michelin star – book into one of the Belgravia Suites at the revamped Goring Hotel and you’ll be treated to a cocktail hour, served by your own footman.
It’s royal pedigree runs deep – the coronations of King George VI and Her Majesty The Queen were both celebrated here and The Queen Mother was a regular diner – the restaurant still serves her favourite dish of Eggs Drumkilbo (albeit with the chef’s own twist), a lobster and egg-based delicacy, which is simply delicious.
It came as little surprise then in 2011 when the Duchess of Cambridge (then just Kate Middleton) hired the entire hotel the night before her royal wedding to Prince William, Duke of Cambridge. Two years later, in 2013, her husband’s grandmother gave the Goring a Royal Warrant and to date it is the only hotel to have been awarded such status for hospitality services.
One of the great benefits of the Goring is its central location, within easy walk of Buckingham Palace, St James’s Park and Westminster Abbey, but there is so much more to enjoy here besides.
Behind the Edwardian facade lies a luxurious interior that befits its royal clientele, from the sumptuous Bar and Lounge, where you can enjoy Champagne or the hotel’s famous afternoon tea, (you can even indulge in a game of croquet on the outside lawn in the Goring Garden if the mood takes), to the luminous Dining Room, which was remodelled by David Linley, the company set up by its namesake, HM The Queen’s nephew, in 2005.
Talking of the Dining Room, the menu by Executive Chef Shay Cooper is fully deserving of its recent Michelin star. Adding interesting textures and flavours to staple British dishes, Cooper uses the finely sourced ingredients, such as Romney Marsh lamb and Clarence Court hens’ eggs, to create innovative and fresh dishes – the Michelin Guide describes it as “a paean to all things British and the very model of discretion and decorum.” Indeed, for traditionalists, both the Champagne and cheese trolleys will delight, while it is one of the few London restaurants to still serve roast rib of beef carved from a silver trolley.
Earlier this year the Goring – which has been family-owned throughout its 105-year history – revealed the final stage of an in-depth refurbishment, the new Front Hall, designed by British designer Russell Sage, which includes newly restored marble flooring and wallpaper depicting some of the most famous characters in the hotel’s history.
When it comes to bedding down for the night choose from one of the lovely garden rooms, a deluxe room, or (our favourite) a Belgravia Suite.
The latter are designed in a refined English style and adorned with rich fabrics – the walls are something else, Russell Sage had six historic silks rewoven from The Gainsborough Silk Company to resplendent effect. Each suite comes with its own elegant sitting room, with views out over Beeston Place.
The bathrooms, all marble, include Molton Brown toiletries and nice additions in case you’ve forgotten anything, including dental and shaving kits and mouthwash. Mood lighting is a nice modern touch – choose between bright, cosy, calm and ooh.
But the most special addition to these suites is surely the in-room cocktail hour – the height of decadence – all served by your very own footman, who at the push of a button will arrive at your door, ready to attend to your every need.
Sadly we didn’t get a chance to poke our heads inside the Royal Suite – we can only assume a very special guest was in attendance.
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