It is quickly apparent when staying at any of The Red Carnation Hotels that they have a personal touch and that food is an integral of their guest offering.
The Red Carnation collection was established in 1984 by Mrs Beatrice Tollman, President and Founder as well as a passionate foody who continues to take charge of the hotels’ kitchens today.
Mrs Tollman aspires to offer menus to ensure that her guests enjoy a ‘home from home’ experience. There are dishes from South Africa where she was born and comforting recipes passed down through her family like Bea’s Chicken Soup, still the number one requested dish from room service.
Each hotel in the collection has its own individual identity that makes it stand out in the group. Which one will you choose to check in at on your next visit to London?
A Gentlemanly stay at The Milestone
Afternoon tea is so often associated with ladies gathering to wax lyrical over a sumptuous feast of sandwiches, scones and dainty cakes. However, the Milestone has introduced a Gentlemanly Afternoon Tea to suit a more savoury palate (available to both gentlemen and ladies).
Treats include mini home made pork pies, mini Cornish pasties, mini toad-in-the-hole and maple-cured bacon scones served with truffle butter. Finger sandwiches are filled with rare sirloin beef and horseradish, honey roast ham and English mustard, and cream cheese and smoked salmon. The tea starts at £39 per person and £49.50 to include a flight of ale, or £59.50 for a flight of whisky. The Gentlemanly Tea is available from 24 October throughout the winter. www.milestonehotel.com
Creating a Buzz at The Chesterfield
Tourists are not the only residents at Mayfair’s Chesterfield Hotel. The hotel is also home to 60,000 bees housed in two hives on the roof. The bees produce one crop a year that is harvested into honey and served to guests with their toast at breakfast.
It is hoped that the bees will help sustain the local environment pollinating the flowers and plants in the gardens of Buckingham and St James’s Palace and local parks including St James’s Park, Green Park and Hyde Park.
The hotel also feels it is important to support bees at a time when their numbers are falling rapidly. Keep an eye on the Chesterfield’s website for seasonal offers including honey-themed Afternoon Bee. www.chesterfieldmayfair.com
The Rubens at the Palace for Little Princes and Princesses
With its location right next door to Buckingham Palace it is only fitting that young guests checking into the Rubens should be treated like royalty. In addition to tiny bathrobes and slippers, a children’s turndown with milk and a treat, stickers and colouring book, an interactive child’s map of London and a dedicated Kid’s concierge, youngsters can also enjoy a Little Prince and Princess afternoon tea.
For £15 a head the tea includes bite size sandwiches, freshly baked scones, pastries and a choice of milkshake, hot chocolate, tea or soft drink. Children staying at the hotel can also enjoy cupcake decorating with the hotel’s pastry chef. www.rubenshotel.com
Star gazing at 41
With its discreet entrance and strict guest only policy, it is highly likely that a few stars walk through the doors of Hotel 41 in Victoria. However for real star gazing, the hotel offers A Night under the Stars package. This allows guests the opportunity to sleep under the London night sky in the glass roofed Penthouse Conservatory Suite whilst enjoying personalised treats that include a flight of champagne, an astronomy book and use of the telescope in the suite.
Guests can also ‘name a star’ after a loved one and are given a certificate as a keepsake to take home. The package starts from £1,159 per night based on two adults sharing including all of the above plus a traditional full English breakfast and access to Plunder the Pantry. www.41hotel.com
Access to V&A feature exhibitions with The Egerton House
Located just over the road from the Victoria and Albert museum, one of the world’s greatest museums of art and design, Egerton House offers a year round package giving guests access to the feature exhibition of their choice. These tickets often sell out in advance so this is a great way to secure access to exhibitions, and also explore the 3000 years of amazing artefacts from many of the world’s richest cultures.
The two-night package starts from £365 per room per night based on two sharing and includes two tickets to the feature exhibition of choice, a copy of the latest V&A magazine, full English breakfast and a bottle of chilled champagne on arrival. This is for a minimum stay of two nights. www.redcarnationhotels.com/egertonhousehotel
The Ski Lodge at the Montague on the Gardens
It maybe in the heart of Bloomsbury but this winter the Montague on the Gardens is embracing all things Alpine with the opening of the Ski Lodge from mid-November. The hotel’s Garden Grill (that operates as a BBQ terrace in the summer) will be transformed into a Winter Wonderland with pine trees, falling snow, reindeer, snowmen, ski racks and piste maps.
To embrace the après ski atmosphere the bar will be serving ski themed drinks including schnapps, flavoured vodkas, mulled wine, hot spiced cider, Winter Pimm’s and Jagermeister. Access to the Ski Lodge is with a special pass for £25 that includes a mini turkey burger, bratwurst and deep fried camembert as well as three ‘winter’ themed drinks. www.montaguehotel.com