ST PANCRAS RENAISSANCE HOTEL
When the international train station for the Eurostar super train moved from Waterloo to the Victorian era St Pancras station, a multi-million pound renovation project refurbished the grand lady of red brick into a spanking new modern terminus, and part of that revival was the recovery of one of London’s glamorous luxury hotel addresses. The former Midland Grand Hotel was reopened as the St Pancras Renaissance Hotel, a 5-star luxury Marriot hotel with Butler Service, a Private London Club and Spa, a corridor away from the departure platforms of the Eurostar train to Paris and Brussels.
Inside the iconic Victorian Gothic Revival building, one of London’s architectural masterpieces of a bygone age, which houses both the train station and the hotel, are a collection of deluxe rooms and exceptional suites with towering ceilings, beautifully restored period details and grand marble fireplaces. The hotel is filled with the romance of a golden age legacy, making a stay at the St Pancras, or its exclusive Chambers Suites, a connection with the epic story of Great Britain’s railway history.
The St Pancras station and Grand Midland Hotel complex was originally designed by famed architect Sir George Gilbert Scott, known for his Gothic Revival design work on churches around England with projects at Westminster Cathedral and Salisbury, and the Albert Memorial in London, and through its history the hotel’s grand interior has made appearances in a long list of film and television projects from “The Servant” and two generations of “Batman” to installments of “Harry Potter”, “Bridget Jones’ Diary” and “Downton Abbey”
The origins of the hotel lie with the Midland Railway, which connected the thriving industrial region of the East Midlands and Yorkshire with London in the 1850s. Rather than share tracks with other railways, the Midlands wanted its own station. The train shed was designed by William Barlow, but for the surrounding building, the railway selected George Gilbert Scott, who had just been commissioned by Queen Victoria to build a monument to her beloved Prince Albert in Hyde Park. The railway wanted a station which would outshine any other in the city, and Gilbert delivered on his promise, his most successful design. The unmistakable red brick was manufactured in the kilns of the midlands and carried to London. The construction of the Midland Grand Hotel began in 1868 and took eight years for the stonemasons, artists, and craftsmen to open for its first guests in 1873, but finish work not complete until 1876.
The Midland Grand Hotel retained her glamour for visitors traveling to London for the next forty years, but by the 1920s, she had begun to fade. The hotel eventually fell into a rather dilapidated state, and was scheduled for demolition by the 1960s, only saved by the efforts of the Victorian Society as a preservation site, but for a hotel born of the expanding rail system, it was the arrival of the Eurostar which has brought a stunning rebirth.
The Chambers Club
The Chambers Club, once the 'Terrace Entrance' of the hotel where Victorian grand dames and gentlemen would make their studied entrance on the hotel's most famous feature, the Grand Staircase, is now the private and exclusive reserve of the St Pancras Chambers Suites guests and VIP visitors. From 6am until midnight, guests can enjoy special hospitality, beginning with a complimentary breakfast, a mid-morning snack or light afternoon tea, evening canapés and a selection of alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages. Lunch and dinner are available on request with modern and traditional British dishes served in classic surroundings that unite the classic and the contemporary.
The Gilbert Scott Restaurant
The former grand dining room of the Midlands Hotel where pillars of polished limestone with gold guild capitals carved with motifs of pea pods and bursting pomegranates line the wall, now frame an informal brasserie style setting, guided by the hand of one of Britain’s most celebrated master chefs, Marcus Wareing. The Gilbert Scott features a menu inspired by the traditional cooks of Britain’s upper crust, with contemporary takes on the classics, as well as seasonal inspirations, mirroring the wonder of Sir George’s architectural innovations.
Booking Office Bar & Restaurant
Set in the original ticket hall of the station, the Booking Office Bar and Restaurant at St Pancras Renaissance Hotel is one of the most atmospheric spots to enjoy a drink in London. A revival of the tradition of the station café, the cathedral-like drama of the ceilings combined with the long bar, make the Booking Office a striking setting for breakfast, brunch, lunch or dinner, while the bar offers a variety cocktails and alcoholic punches recreated from recipes from the Victorian era, with live music every Thursday, Friday and Saturday.
The Chambers Suite guests enjoy dedicated Butler and Concierge Service. The butlers, harkening back to the Edwardian age are trained experts who anticipate a guest's every need. Think of the Butlers as personal aides and trusted advisors, secretaries and stewards, rolled into one. Reservations, luggage packing service, or managing in-suite London receptions or dinner parties, are just some of the services to call upon.
St Pancras Spa
In a definition of luxury, the St Pancras Spa reflects the luxurious bathing atmosphere of Victorian England. Revitalize the mind, body and spirit with treatments themed around the idea of 'Journeys', ranging from India or Africa, to Indonesia and The Silk Road, with each of these tours of pampered care comprising techniques and ingredients reflective of the individual destination, centered around the London Spa’s tiled pool with hydro loungers, traditional saunas, therapeutic steam room, and a relaxation lounge.
Eurostar Valet Service
Many guests at St Pancras plan to explore more than one European capital city to explore. As part of an exclusive collaboration with Eurostar, for residents of the luxury Chambers, Eurostar Valet Service is available, with valets on call to fast track guests and their luggage through security with a VIP service to escort guests and their luggage directly from their Chambers suite to their reserved Eurostar seat or alternatively meet them on the platform arriving from the continent. i© Bargain Luxury Travel
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