Review: The Waldorf Hilton Hotel, London

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Out Of Office Magazine reviews one of Convent Garden’s grandest and iconic hotels, the Waldorf Hilton Hotel

Turn the clock back to 1908; the Waldorf opened its doors, dining rooms and suites to visitors hoping to capture a piece of the American dream in London, with the latest New Yorker boutique charm.

It wasn’t to be just a hotel, but a place where tourists, passer-byes and locals could stop for dinner, afternoon tea and a glorious place to rest their heads in the height of luxury in the West End.

Three years prior to its opening, with a glitzy champagne reception, theatrical Impresario Edward Sanders decided to build a hotel on the northern rim of Aldwych. He partnered with accountant, Thomas Wild, to raise the sum of £700,000 with the assistance of William Waldorf Astor, who the hotel was named after in gratitude.

Inside, past reception is the Palm Court Lounge. It’s no wonder that’s where scenes from the Titanic film A Night to Remember were filmed, as director Roy Ward Baker thought it perfect for depicting the interior of a ship with its oaken walls.

The history of the place is plentiful. During WWII, The Waldorf placed adverts in the press reassuring visitors that its alloy structure made it safe. One stray bomb missed the hotel but shockwaves shattered the Palm Court roof and tango tea dances were suspended as a result. The restaurant then became a staff dormitory and the hotel’s legendary head waiter slept in a corner every night to keep an eye on it.

Fast forward to 2017, and the hotel, taken over by the Hilton Corporation 13 years ago, still looks as grand as it did back upon its opening. Arriving at dusk, its warm lights shine brightly outside and inside we are greeted by reception and then taken to our executive suite.

The room 

Each executive suite includes a complimentary breakfast, afternoon tea, evening canapés and drinks all served in the executive lounge.

The Edwardian style suites are spacious and well decorated with a comfy king bed and windows that open out onto the bustling streets of London.

The room also featured a Handy smartphone, which gives guests access to unlimited local and international calls, free internet access, promotions and an on-the-go hotel concierge service. This gadget is a great extra for those staying who are unfamiliar with the city.

The restaurant

We visited the Homage Restaurant for our evening meal; we were treated to a set menu of three courses and a glass of champagne each for £29.50. With its high ceilings, chandeliers and gold topped pillars, it’s a special setting – great for a celebratory meal or a treat.

Our highlights were the roasted wood pigeon and seabass for mains, and the chocolate parfait for dessert.

Why choose The Waldorf Hilton Hotel?  Stunning, beautiful and historic, it provides a relaxing stay in central London.

Cost: ££££

Aldwych, London WC2B 4DD, United Kingdom

Website

0207 836 2400

 

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Review: Cubana, Smithfield

cubana

Out Of Office Magazine reviews Cubana near Farringdon Station

Cubana is lively bar, kitchen and coffee spot that has recently opened in Smithfield.

On arrival the open plan bar and kitchen was buzzing with live salsa music adding to the feel good Friday night vibe.

We kicked off our experience with cocktails – classic mojito and a strawberry daiquiri, followed by a selection of tapas and desserts. Other than the delicious cocktails, the highlights were the prawns in light tempura batter and the quirky range of ice creams (we tried banana and chilli chocolate).

Unfortunately the freshly baked artisan bread had run out so we didn’t get to sample that – clearly it’s very popular!

What? A casual bar and kitchen serving street food, cocktails and fragrant coffees. Easy to forget that you’re not on a beach in Cuba while you’re here!

Why choose Cubana? A good choice for those working in or around Farringdon if you’re looking for a casual, yet quirky, destination for lunch, dinner and/or drinks. It also makes a welcome change from the run-of-the-mill chain coffee shops in the day time.

Cost: ££

59 Charterhouse St, London EC1M 6HA
07496 327 076
www.cubana.co.uk

Review: Rocket, Holborn, London

Holborn Front Sign

Out Of Office Magazine reviews Rocket, a modern bar and restaurant serving Californian style salads; grills and Neapolitan pizzas. 

Rocket has four venues in London and another in Nottingham, but OOO decided to visit the Holborn location which is just a two-minute walk away from Holborn underground station.  

With a relatively small ‘shop front’ it’s pleasantly surprising as you make your way downstairs and realise how much space there is inside. With a separate bar and restaurant area it’s easy to decide between casual bar dining or a more smart/casual sit down meal.

Rocket offers a range of bespoke cocktails which provide the perfect start to your experience; we opted for a champagne cocktail with Hendricks gin and lychees, and another from the special ‘Gintestering’ menu (there is plenty here for a gin lover).

Highlights of the three-course meal were the mains: the ‘surf & turf’ salad of black tiger prawns, baby squid and seared rare beef, and the most meaty pizza on the menu with generous helpings of salami, chorizo, prosciutto, pancetta and roasted chilli.

What? A sleek, modern bar and restaurant with a good sized cocktail and food menu.

Why choose Rocket? It’s relaxed but smart atmosphere makes it perfect for meetings. The menus are packed with bold and refreshing flavours, and with a good variety on offer you can be assured there will be something for everyone. Private dining and event options also available.

Cost: ££

36-38 Kingsway, London WC2B 6EY
0207 242 8070
www.rocketrestaurants.co.uk