After being closed for nearly three years, the Savoy hotel will finally reopen on 10 October.
The 268-bedroom hotel was originally scheduled to be closed for 16 months to allow the £100m-refurbishment to take place, but the extensive nature of the refit - which has seen the Victorian building being stripped back to the bone as well as a reconfiguration of the riverside façade - has delayed the project and seen its cost escalate to what some believe is double the original budget.
"It is fair to say that this project has not been without its challenges, but we are looking forward to unveiling the results of nearly three years of hard work and dedication," said Kiaran MacDonald, the Savoy's general manager. "We are very aware of the place that the Savoy holds in many people's affections and we firmly believe that the hotel will exceed people's expectations and reclaim its position as one of the world's great hotels."
A team of over 1,000 craftsmen and women, artists and artisan have worked on the project to create interiors, designed by Pierre Yves Rochon, in the spirit of the hotel's original Edwardian and art deco influences.
The reopening of the hotel will include the remodelling of the River Restaurant, the addition of a new two-bedroom Royal Suite and the relaunch of 38 river-view suites and bedrooms.
New to the hotel will be the art deco-inspired Beaufort Bar offering Champagne, cocktails and canapés; Savoy Tea, a teashop selling tea and fresh pâtisseries; and one of the few rooftop pools in London.
The original Thames Foyer will see the reintroduction of a winter garden gazebo beneath an ornate glass dome, while the Savoy Grill will return under the operation of Gordon Ramsay Holdings, headed by chef-patron Stuart Gillies and head chef Andy Cook.
Opening room rates at the Savoy will start at £350, with reservations being taken from 10 August.
By Janet Harmer
E-mail your comments to Janet Harmer here.
If you have something to say on this story or anything else join the debate at Table Talk - Caterer's new networking forum. Go to www.caterersearch.com/tabletalk
Looking for a new job? Find your next job here with Caterersearch.com jobs