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Caterer loves… bathroom products

06 April 2006

Gone are the days when a hotel could get away with a simple bar of soap, 2-in-1 shampoo-conditioner and perhaps one of those not-so-stylish shower caps in its bathrooms.

Hoteliers have woken up to how much importance guests put on their "bathroom experience" and the fact that it is now possible to reinforce brand values even while your guests are in the shower.

Tom's Companies, owner of the luxurious Seaham Hall hotel in County Durham, was ahead of the pack when introducing luxury brand Aromatherapy Associates.

The exclusive brand is sold only in the right kind of places (Space.NK, etc) and offers an intoxicating range of delights along the lines of rosemary and ylang-ylang shampoo and petitgrain, lavender and ho wood body wash.

At the hip Firmdale Hotels group, bespoke Miller Harris fragrances grace the elegant bathrooms, a choice made in order to represent the hotel chain's "Englishness".

Thinking along the same lines, the luxurious Four Seasons Hotel London has retained its use of Mayfair's Floris brand, the same used in the hotel for the past 35 years. The company's Hampshire property offers guests - those in suites, anyway - the classic Penhaligon's brand, while Paris pampers with Bulgari and Milan with Acca Kappa.

Mandarin Oriental, meanwhile, also takes a serious view of bathrooms, with each hotel choosing different products depending on location. Hence in London's Mandarin Oriental Hyde Park hotel, suite guests are treated to Jo Malone products - "stylish yet quintessentially English" as the blurb goes. And the flavour? Lime, basil and mandarin, obviously.

Even Hilton has joined the parade offering the luxurious La Source product range by Crabtree & Evelyn.

But don't worry, if it all gets too much, rest assured that at a budget hotel all you'll get is a bar of soap.

By Ximena Holliday

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