History Ritz, London
Cesar Ritz

Ritz, London

"Children of the Ritz, sleek and civilized ... We know just how we want our quails done, and then we go and have our nails done." Noel Coward
A small house to which I am proud to see my name attached." Cesar Ritz Younger sibling to its Paris namesake, this is the London hotel that helped put the word 'ritzy' into the dictionary. Need we say more?
And: In the list of Royal Warrant holders of the British Royal Family only one British hotel figures. British Royal Warrants are currently granted by Elizabeth II, the Duke of Edinburgh and the Prince of Wales to companies or tradespeople who supply goods and services. The warrant enables the supplier to advertise the fact that they supply to the royal family. Royal Warrants are only awarded to tradesmen. The professions, employment agencies, party planners, the media, government departments, and "places of refreshment or entertainment" (such as pubs and theatres) do not qualify. The „Catering Services“ of the Ritz Hotel, London, however, qualify.

How the Stage was Set HISTORY IN BRIEF 1906: Opening date. 1995: The hotel was bought by Sir David Barclay and Sir Frederick Barclay's Ellerman Investments. 2006: Centenary celebrations (see details below). HISTORY IN DETAIL 1905: Construction of The Ritz began and the building was completed remarkably quickly, in large part due to the efforts of Swedish engineer Sven Bylander who designed its steel frame, something of a rarity in European buildings at the time. The actual design of the hotel is the work of architects Charles Mewès and Arthur Davis. Mewès, a Frenchman and London born Davis had worked with César Ritz before on the Hotel Ritz in Paris, and The Carlton in London. Cesar Ritz personally managed the hotel for some years and brought in his trusted partner Auguste Escoffier to take care of the kitchen. Together, they continued the good work achieved at The Savoy. A description of The Ritz For The Ritz London they drew up a stunning French chateau-style masterpiece with a wealth of clever details; light wells allowed rooms with no outside windows natural light, projecting dormer windows and tall chimneys broke the skyline. Some of the details are less functional; the copper lions on the corner of the roof are purely decorative. Inside, the French theme continues; Mewès designed the interiors with a single Louis XVI theme incorporating all of César Ritz's many requirements like double glazing, a sophisticated (for the time) ventilation system a bathroom for every guestroom. Leading off the lobby is the Long Gallery, a vaulted space that runs almost the whole length of the building. The absence of walls or doors means it's possible to see down its whole length, through The Restaurant and out over the hotel's Italian Gardens and across Green Park. Off the Long Gallery are many of the hotel's key rooms, all with their own fascinating histories: The Restaurant, often described as one of the most beautiful dining rooms in Europe features so many chandeliers the ceiling had to be specially reinforced to cope with their weight. World War II: The Marie Antoinette Suite, a smaller private dining room was used as a venue for Summit Meetings by Churchill, de Gaulle and Eisenhower. 1976: The hotel had been owned for some time by the Bracewell-Smith family who also had significant stakes in the nearby Park Lane Hotel. However the oil crisis in the early 1970s affected business and prompted the family to sell their stake to Trafalgar House in 1976 for £2.75m 1995: The Ritz returned to private British ownership when it was bought by Sir David Barclay and Sir Frederick Barclay's Ellerman Investments. A complete and total restoration of the hotel followed, lasting 10 years and costing over £50 million. 2006: The Ritz celebrated its 100th birthday with a bang. The Centenary celebrations started on New Years Eve with a lavish celebration; in The Ritz Restaurant the RAF Regimental Marching Band entertained a black tie audience, outside, fireworks ushered in the New Year. Throughout the year, fascinating items (photos, letters etc…) from The Ritz archive were on display around the hotel. In February a special centenary edition of "The Ritz Hotel London" by renowned historian Marcus Binney CBE went on sale, with a forward from His Royal Highness The Prince of Wales. On May the 24th, one hundred years to the day since Cesar Ritz held a dinner to celebrate the opening of his new hotel, The Ritz hosted a lavish Centennial Reception. Around 250 guests from all over the world were welcomed by Deputy Chairman Andrew Love and General Manager Stephen Boxall.
Among the many famous guests to have graced The Ritz: From the World of Politics Winston Churchill General Eisenhower King Edward VII King Alfonso of Spain Queen Amelie of Portugal Aga Khan From the World of Entertainment Russian Prima Ballerina Anna Pavlova Paul Getty Charlie Chaplin Noel Coward Tallulah Bankhead
Did you know that... that he site now occupied by The Ritz at 150 Piccadilly has previously been home to several similar businesses? The Old White Horse Cellar was once one of the most famous coaching inns in England, later the site was occupied by the Bath Hotel and then the Walsingham House Hotel, which was demolished to make way for The Ritz. ------ Charlie Chaplin needed 40 policemen to escort him through an army of fans? ------ American actress Tallulah Bankhead famously sipped Champagne from her slipper during a press conference in the 50s? ------ the Ritz is where Prince Charles made his first public outing with Camilla Parker Bowles after Princess Diana's death? In fact, the hotel is the Prince of Wales' official caterer. ------ "It was during a lunch at The Ritz that Lady Furness, the mistress of the future King Edward VIII, asked Wallis Warfield-Simpson to look after him while she was away. As we know, she did all too well. Lady Furness also asked Mrs. Simpson to "See that he doesn't get into any mischief". He did more than that because he abdicated and renounced on the English throne because neither the British government nor the Anglican church allowed him to marry the divorced American." Marcus Binney: The Ritz Hotel London. Thames & Hudson in association with The Ritz, 1999

Luc Delafosse

Managed by: Ritz-Carlton
Piccadilly Suite ------ Green Park Suites ------ Park Suite ------ Arlington Suite ------ Berkelely Suite ------ Royal Suite ------ Prince of Wales Suite
Ritz Restaurant ------ Palm Court, the famously opulent Louis XVI-style setting for a Tea at The Ritz ------ Rivoli Bar, designed in art deco style in 2001 by interior designer Tessa Kennedy.
Tea at The Ritz is a British institution.
The Ritz Salon (health and beauty) ------ Fitness Studio
The Ritz London has a formal dress code in its public areas. Gentlemen are requested to wear a jacket and tie when using The Palm Court, Rivoli Bar or The Ritz Restaurant. Jeans and/or training shoes are not permitted in these areas.
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Our Select Member Hotel

Ritz, London
Country: England
City: London
Opening date: 1906

Note from the Host

General Manager Stephen Boxall Esq.


150 Piccadilly
W1J 9BR England, London

Tel: +44 20 7300 2308/9/10
Fax: +44 20 7493 2687

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