THE GORING HOTEL LONDON
CATHERINE MIDDLETON AND PIPPA MIDDLETON STAYED THE NIGHT BEFORE THE ROYAL WEDDING.
The Goring Hotel London, is where Catherine Middleton, her mother Carole and sister Pippa Middleton elected to spend the night before Catherine’s Royal Wedding to the Duke of Cambridge, Prince William.
They chose a five-room suite at the top of the hotel, overlooking a quiet internal garden square. It had apparently been recently redecorated along with the rest of the hotel as part of a planned general refurbishment, following the hotel’s 100th birthday last year.
The 71 rooms at the Goring cost upwards of £400 a night, while a suite can set guests back up to £1,525 a night, according to previously published tariffs. However, Clarence House insisted that it was the Middleton family’s personal choice to stay there, in preference to Buckingham Palace.
The Goring, is a hotel with a very rich royal heritage. Queen Mary, the wife of King George V, used to take afternoon tea there with the Hon. Violet d’Arcyher, who had come to live at The Goring while she was Lady in Waiting to the Queen. Queen Elizabeth, the Queen Mother, was a regular visitor too, her last outing before she died was to the Goring Hotel London.
During the post war years King George VI and his queen, Elizabeth the Queen Mother, would bring their daughters, Princess Elizabeth and Princess Margaret for scrambled eggs and sausages.
Since the Princess Elizabeth became Queen Elizabeth II, she is known to still enjoy visiting the hotel in order to dine.
The Goring Hotel London, was the last grand hotel to be built during the Edwardian era and is the only major hotel perhaps in the whole of Britain, certainly in London, that is still owned and run by the same family that built it.
Completed in 1910, the hotel is in a quiet sidestreet just a few yards and a short walk from Buckingham Palace. It is furnished in the style of a London club or a wood-panelled English country house, usually being a haunt for diplomats and politicians.
It was opened that same year by Otto Richard Goring on 2 March and professed to be the first hotel in the world in which every room had a private bathroom and central heating and all for the princely sum of seven shillings and sixpence per night.
During the first world war, the Goring Hotel London, became the command centre for the Chief of Allied Forces and after America entered the war, the HQ of the American troops in England.
It was from here that direct contact was established between General Pershing and President Woodrow Wilson, the allied war effort effectively being run from the hotel kitchen. The French and German Goring staff were evacuated and famously walked arm in arm to Victoria station singing each other’s national anthemns.
When Air-conditioning was invented in 1921 Otto Goring installed an enormous fan on the roof, which he had piped to every room. Vacuum cleaners were attached via outlets in the skirting boards.
An explanation may be found as to why visiting royalty always seem to prefer staying at the Goring Hotel rather than nearby Buckingham Palace. During a visit of the Norwegian Crown Prince to the hotel, at the Coronation of King George VI in 1937, he explained his fondness for the hotel by saying, “at Buckingham Palace I have to share a bath with five people! Here I have one to myself”.
In 1938 at a meeting between British Prime Minister Neville Chamberlain and the French Prime Minister, Edouard Daladier, which took place at the Goring, just before the outbreak of the second world war, the switchboard operator, Leslie Nicol was a witness to the spectacle of Daladier being bodily lifted by his lapels off the floor by Winston Churchill, to the consternation of Chamberlain.
Prior to the Invasion of Europe in 1944 during World War II, the Fox Film crew stayed at the Goring Hotel, before making their way to join the invading forces for the D-Day landings.
The Coronation of Queen Elizabeth lI in 1953 saw a vast influx of foreign royalty come to stay at the Goring, which became an annexe to Buckingham Palace.
In 1960, the 50th year of the Goring and the start of the Swinging Sixties, Jean Shrimpton caused consternation at the hotel by appearing in one of the first mini skirts. Price of a room then was – £4.
The year 2005 saw the Acquisition of the gardens from the Duke of Westminster. Retirement of Mr George Goring on March 22nd after 43 years at the helm. Appointment of 4th generation Jeremy Goring.
Opening of the new Dining Room, designed by David Linley.
The Dining Room was voted best British Restaurant by ITV Carlton TV, in front of 5 million viewers.
The Goring voted number one hotel in London by readers of Travel + Leisure Magazine.
Besides it’s royal visitors Winston Churchill used to be a regular guest and frequently visited his mother, Lady Randolph Churchill there, who moved into The Goring Hotel in 1919.
The Goring Hotel London, is famous for its traditional English breakfasts and puddings.