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Walking along the river bank, lined with trees in a variety of orange shades, in the crisp early morning air, autumn is one of my favourite seasons. On a morning like this, all you can think of is a large cup of fresh ground coffee in warm, cosy surroundings and, by perfect coincidence, The Savoy Hotel is right opposite.
The Edwardian interior, with its glossy black and white floor, brings a true splendour to the impressive lobby, not to mention the stunning floral arrangements near the Thames Foyer – dreamy, right?
This grand hotel is almost like a maze with its large, never-ending hallway. The double door, by itself, is rather impressive, but now we are all curious to see what it’s like inside, so shall we take a peek?
The Savoy has recently unveiled a brand-new suite on the riverside of the sixth floor. Open and light-filled, the layout of The Savoy Suite exaggerates the unrivalled views of the River Thames and iconic London landmarks, stretching from Westminster and the Houses of Parliament, incorporating Big Ben and the London Eye, and all the way along to the City and Canary Wharf. It was this same spectacular view that inspired Claude Monet to paint his famous series of London bridges, as he resided in this same suite for the first of three lengthy stays at The Savoy between 1899 and 1901.
Time to undo the burnt orange overcoat by River Island, the “Christy’s of London” fedora hat and unpack the “Aspinal of London” tote weekend bag into the polished dressing room. The butler brings in a silver tray, holding a fine bone-china cup and pot of fresh coffee, and the aroma immediately wafts throughout the room – a perfect coffee with a panoramic view of London, could this get any better?
But wait, another distinctive aroma catches my attention – there, sitting pretty on the mantelpiece, is a decadently perfumed candle by Penhaligon, housed in beautifully opalescent glass, and gently spreading its own perfume, flavours of citrus combined with highly scented orange blossom, throughout the room.
The room itself reminds me of a present-day vision of the twenties, but something seems missing – perhaps a cigar, a dangling long pearl necklace, an abundance of sequins on a “flapper” dress or French 75 cocktail, not to mention the perfect aftershave “The Tragedy of Lord George” by Penhaligon’s.
“Lord George is a wealthy and respected man, the archetypal patriarch. He seems to embody the noblest values of the aristocracy: virtue, respect, loyalty and faithfulness. His fragrance reflects his essence; seemingly traditional, yet with hidden secrets.
“The flesh is weak.”
This sounds like an ideal fragrance to wear for day or night, with its charming and mysterious scent – time to put on your best shoes and dance the day and night away.
Or perhaps you might want something more empowering such as smoky, velvety and woody air…
“Clandestine Clara, she is rebellious, contradictory, independent, unconventional – a woman ahead of her time. But above all, as you will discover, she is a true gourmand, completely delectable.”
Does this sound like you? Lord George would know! Fingers in between the pearl necklace, sipping French 75 at the bar and with a dash of “Clara” fragrance to make this a night to remember.
The good news is that this dream can be reality – these two legendary perfumes have their own stories but you can create your own by choosing from the ‘Portraits’ collection.
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Now’s the time to hear your own story.
Photos by Victoria Metaxas