On a still dry night in March, around 600 fabulously smart guests arrived at the front door of The Goring to the sound of a brass band – and not just any brass band – before stepping into a magical party celebrating the 100th birthday of the only five red star hotel in London that is still personally managed by the family whose name appears above the door.
I was lucky enough to be among the happy throng and found my eyes swivelling frequently to glimpse famous faces from the worlds of politics and entertainment while chatting to my friends from the hotel trade.
Managing Director David Morgan-Hewitt read out a charming message from Her Majesty The Queen before Jeremy Goring (grandson of the hotel’s founder) and then his father George (who ran the hotel successfully for over 30 years) made witty and at times touching speeches, followed by dancing to an excellent big band. Needless to say, the hospitality flowed freely in the form of delicious provender, washed down with champagne. Such a party is rare indeed.
For anyone closely connected with the hotel this was an emotional night too because The Goring and it’s peerless team have made us all feel like part of the family. And best thing is this was not the end of an era, just a celebration of its first hundred years. The legend lives on.
Written by Peter Hancock