Your best dining experience awaits
A Rolle Royce just in front, a Bentley pulled up behind; an immaculately dressed butler complete with top hat and white gloves approached the vehicle, opening the door to our Toyota Prius – this maybe The Ritz, but we still needed a ride from Uber.
The entrance was beautiful. It was 1st January and the doorway was dressed with Christmas Tree’s, fairy lights and gorgeous decorations. We walked up the stairs and were greeting by another Butler. As he pulled open the door to take us inside, he looked at me and in a classic Michael Caine’s London accent, he nodded his head and said “Welcome, to The Ritz”.
A 20ft Christmas Tree stood before us and the most magnificent reception I had ever seen. It was like walking into the Victorian times. Marble columns stretched all the way up to the ridiculously high ceiling, marble floor and the grandest stairway I have seen (not including Michael Douglas movies). We were greeted at Reception by the most impeccable dressed team of staff – I felt underdressed in my M&S suit. The Butler opened the 15ft door to the bar, and from this point on the experience was simply surreal.
It was like we were in the Titanic. A long elegant corridor lined with marble columns and Christmas Trees stretched ahead of us. Chandeliers bigger than my car hung above us. We were seated in the bar area, a drink before food – I think they call it an Aperitif. It was so posh I didn’t know what to do. I’m not a student, I’ve been to the odd 5 star hotel, I even went to the Hilton once, but this place was on another level. I sat down as normal, then sat up straight, then crossed my legs, then uncrossed them – how do you sit in a place like this? I was dying to get my phone out and take some photos, but was I allowed? What’s the phone etiquette in a place like this? I just wanted to check in!
We looked through the drinks menu – I couldn’t seem to find Prosecco so I ordered a cocktail I never heard of. You have to keep telling yourself, I’m in The Ritz for one evening only, so its ok to pay £32 for a cocktail I have never heard of (that was one of the cheapest). The cocktail came looking amazing (as you’d expect for a £32 cocktail) in a glass that probably cost £25. However served with the cocktail was food, hors d'oeuvres – what a nice surprise.
After the cocktails we were lead down the marble corridor to the restaurant. Oh my god, it was the most beautiful and elegant ball room, like the dining suite in Titanic. It felt like a movie set. The architecture was simply astounding with the ceilings and walls painted like a spectacular Roman chapel. Enormous chandeliers circled the ceilings and curtains the height of double decker busses flowed around each window. Softly light with candles the tables were dressed with crisp white table cloths and the glamorous cutlery branded with the letter ‘R’. This was the most magnificent place I had ever been topped with a pianist playing piano jazz from a black grand piano in the corner – this was certainly an experience of a lifetime
As we dined in ore of this majestic dining suite, we sat back watching the immaculately dressed team moving around the restaurant delivering food using the traditional cloche tray, it was like a scene from an old black and white movie. From the glassware to the butter in the centre of that table, everything was luxury and branded with the letter ‘R’. As for the food, well it could only be amazing. It mostly consisted of ingredients I had never heard of, but looked and tasted every bit as fantastic as the room and whole dining experience itself. After food we sat back, relaxed and just absorbed the atmosphere whilst sipping the most expensive Amaretto I’d ever had - £22, and that was a single.
As the restaurant winded down, and we were among the last tables, you felt more relaxed in wondering around and taking some photos. The building is simply a work of art; the grandness of a Roman Chapel yet with the elegance of the Titanic. I can compare it to nothing and no other experience. We paid the bill, without thinking about it too much, we heading back to reception where we greeted by the Butler. As he opened the door to the cold January night there it was, beautifully polished and waiting for us. Was this to be the high of the night? Our Toyota Prius was waiting for us.
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Dinner for 2 Voucher - £119
Drinks Bill - £140
Total Cost - £259
or £129.50 per person based on a couple