My gentleman friend and I were walking down Regent Street, Central London last weekend when we past the legendary Cafe Royal which reopened to the public last December (2012) after being closed for four years for renovation.
As we gazed in the window plucking up the courage to go inside for a nose around, the doorman invited us in and gave us a personal tour of the now hotel and private members club.
The new pastry cafe which opened to the public earlier this week is awash with beautiful Italian marble. The company supplying the marble for this and other parts of the hotel were apparently so overwhelmed by the huge order they couldn’t take on any other business until the order was complete.
Although the building has been heavily modernised in parts, it has arguably still retained a lot of its old charm and most of its Art Deco detail.
Critics are apparently divided as to whether the renovation project has been sympathetic to the history of the building and whether it will draw the kind of wealthy and artistic clientele it has done so in the past. I’m just glad to see this lovely place reopened again, and when I’ve won the lottery or become a devious golddigger and marry myself off to an extremely rich sugar-daddy then I may even be able to afford to stay there for a night or two.
(PS – apart from the free tour and permission to take the photographs above, I was (alas) given nothing else by the owners as an incentive to write this blog).