St Regis Grand Hotel – Rome, Italy (English)

St Regis Grand Hotel – Rome, Italy (English)
Author

Andreas Augustin

Pages

160

Photographs
Illustrations

210 historic and contemporary pictures, maps and illustrations; cover painting by Manfred Markowski

Leather-bound edition

No

Binding

Hardcover (real cloth bound / gold stamping / dust jacket)

ISBN

987-3-900692-22-3

Size/Weight

160 x 235 mm, 700 g

Price: € 29.00

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In 1894 Cesar Ritz opened the Grand Hotel as the most elegant hotel of Rome. Auguste Escoffier was his first chef. Diplomats, heads of state and royalty shared tables at lavish banquets and occupied its splendidly appointed suites and rooms. Lina Cavalieri, a flower girl working there, became one of the greatest opera stars of her days. The King of Spain spent the last years of his life in his suite there. In 1945, the seeds of modern Italy were sown at the Grand Hotel. Hollywood enjoys it as its preferred retreat in the eternal city. In short: the St Regis is the cultural, social and political revolving point of Italy. This is its story.

'After closing the large iron gates of the St. Regis in Rome, you leave the hectic noise of Roman streets outside. You enter a world of calm and tranquillity. Seemingly, you have reached a very quiet place. While you take a deep breath, you will soon realize that life in here is of a different character. I dare to suggest that major financial and political decisions are made right here at the St. Regis on every single day of the year, either in one of its corners of the lobby, in one of its superb suites, over a lunch or at the bar. Yet all activities are always out of earshot, discreet and inaudible. There were times when Italy was ruled from the Grand Hotel, when the most important people of this country lived here. If you sit still and lean back, you can experience this air of excitement and purposeful activity in an unrivalled discrete and noiseless manner. This is the story of this wonderful hotel, that set new standards for Italian inn keeping. The St. Regis Rome, as it is called today, started its career as the Grand Hotel Rome, a brainchild of the flamboyant hotelier César Ritz.

In 1894 Ritz opened the Grand Hotel as the only Italian ‘adventure’ of the London based Savoy Group. The ‘king of all chefs, the chef of all kings’, Auguste Escoffier, at that time under contract of The Savoy in London, was its first chef. Diplomats, heads of state and royalty shared tables at lavish banquets and occupied its splendidly appointed suites and rooms. Fiat tycoon Giovanni Agnelli maintained a year round apartment and the stars of Hollywood enjoy it as their preferred retreat in the eternal city.

To start with let me take you to the last decades of the 19th century, when Italy developed into a tourist destination as we know it today.

Andreas Augustin

Traveller’s Notepad

After closing the large iron gates of the St. Regis in Rome, you leave the hectic noise of Roman streets outside. You enter a world of calm and tranquillity. Seemingly, you have reached a very quiet place.

While you take a deep breath, you will soon realize that life in here is of a different character. I dare to suggest that major financial and political decisions are made right here at the St. Regis on every single day of the year, either in one of its corners of the lobby, in one of its superb suites, over a lunch or at the bar. Yet all activities are always out of earshot, discreet and inaudible.

There were times when Italy was ruled from the Grand Hotel, when the most important people of this country lived here. If you sit still and lean back, you can experience this air of excitement and purposeful activity in an unri- valled discrete and noiseless manner.

This is the story of this wonderful hotel, that set new standards for Italian inn keeping. The St. Regis Rome, as it is called today, started its career as the Grand Hotel Rome, a brain- child of the flamboyant hotelier César Ritz. Follow me on it's fascinating way through history ...

Andreas Augustin

Andreas Augustin

presents

St. Regis Grand Hotel Rome
in the series The most Famous Hotels in the World TM

We are in particular indebted to all former and current members of the staff, who contributed so generously to this book.
We would like to thank Stephen Alden and Robert Koren, who were the driving forces behind this history project.
Michele Frignani, Managing Director of the St. Regis Rome, has provided this project with the all important patience and necessary support.
We also like to thank in loose order Marco Novella, Federico Galligani, Federico Versari, Andrea Colla, Bart Spoorenberg, Natale Mastrantonio, Umberto Vezzoli, Vittorio Saccone, Mauro Lotti, Paolo Biscioni, Mieke Vandenbulcke, the pianist Elisabetta, Maurizio Chessa, Alessandro Natili, Marco Olivieri, Massimo Azzurro, Elisabetta Pantano and last but not least Pino Buso.

PR office Rome: Lucilla de Luca, Ilenia Santarelli

Photographs: Paolo Scagnoli, Famous Hotels Main Archives, private archives of Tony Deperte, Starwood press archives.

Research: Francesc Brizzi, Thomas Cane and Dr Sofia Reich-Castiglioni
(It must be noted with greatest respect that the management of the hotel decided to accept historical facts rather than old legends and traditionally distributed myths.)

Editor: Thomas Cane

All historic data have been carefully selected during research with the objective of providing a general historical overview. This work does not therefore claim to be complete.
Historic photographs have been restored as necessary, and are therefore subject to copyright. The entire work, including the jacket, the enclosed postcards and bookmarks, are also subject to copyright.

Any form of storage using electronic media or distribution via a network is prohibited. Any reproduction of excerpts from this work without the explicit written consent of THe Most Famous Hotels in the World TM will be prosecuted.

Note for publishers and authors
All the photographs used in this book are available as high-quality digital files. Please contact the archives of The most Famous Hotels in the World ([email protected]) and ask for these illustrations for your own publications. We will be happy to provide them for you.

© 008 Andreas Augustin

e-mail: [email protected] or visit us at: www.famoushotels.org


Production: Harrison Dolittle, Carola Augustin
Layou: Markus Rametsteiner

Design: Ramazotti Michelangelo

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Publisher's recommendations


Dear wonderful Readers; 

Days like this lead to endless hours at home, time for books, time to read and to prepare our next journeys. 

I recommend the new edition of HOTEL METROPOLE HANOI.

The first copies of THE HALF MOON TREASURY are being released – exclusively to our readers (and before its official launching date). 

We have released a reprint of our successful book THE WESTIN EXCLESIOR ROME, the most famous hotel on Via Veneto. 

The new edition of THE STRAND (Yangon,Myanmar) receives wonderful readers' feedback — thank you for your notes and mails. 

There is a hotel in Seefeld, Tyrol, Austria, which stands for all the fables and legends this little olympic village has to tell. It is called ASTORIA, and run by legendary hotelier Elisabeth Gürtler. Our new book SEEFELDER MINIATUREN - ASTORIA - A STORY - A LEGEND is available now – in this store. It is in German, only (for the time being).

Upon request, we dispatch all our books personally autographed (as you know).

Have a save journey!

Andreas Augustin

aa at famoushotels dot org

"So much of who we are is where we have been."

William Langewiesche

American author, airplane pilot

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