LWSY Lunch at The Ritz Restaurant London
Sometimes it is the most unexpected treats that will forever stand out in my mind. I’d lived in London for over 12 years, but the last time I’d visited The Ritz was the night before my university graduation at The Royal Albert Hall with my parents. So many years ago. I remember The Rivoli Bar was humming with surly looking business men early evening before we hopped over the road to our favourite Wolseley for a steak & banana splits (still my death row meal).
Many peoples memory of The Ritz and something I fondly remember every time I took the number 14 bus from outside the hotel to my home in Parsons Green was that scene in the film Notting Hill. The Volvo making the 3 point turn, Hugh Grant trying to find Julia Roberts, still one of my favourite films. Probably part of the reason I always wanted to move to Notting Hill (and did before I moved to Paris).
So imagine my glee when I was told a reservation had been made by my friend Suzanna from Canada Goose for us to visit one Friday afternoon. Note a quick dash to Westfield the night before at 8pm for a suitable dress and heels. I was in London for 3 days work and had only brought trainers. That’ll teach me.
As you arrive it’s everything you want it to be. Nothing can beat the welcome of walking into The Ritz. Businessmen whisper into their mobiles in secluded nooks as you walk the length of the corridor to the restaurant. Stroll past Palm Court filled with excitable ladies with their daughters, friends and grandchildren all on their best behaviour in their best frocks sipping tea and photographing their cake stands. There are three Afternoon Tea sittings a day and it’s full house seven days a week.
Wait until you arrive into the restaurant mind, if you’ve never seen it, your mind will be blown. The Spring sunlight was streaming through the windows from neighbouring Green Park, and we were seated in the most perfect spot, in the corner with views of the entire restaurant.
As the restaurant began to fill, it was such a delight to watch everyones faces as they arrived. Some perhaps regulars knowing exactly what they were ordering, others taking in the champagne cart and listening intently to their waiter listing each dish ingredient by ingredient. We started with some little delights of coronation chicken, goats cheese shortbreads and smoked salmon macaroons.
I tucked into a heavenly plate of lamb followed by the most indulgent Île Flotante I’ve ever tasted
Suzanna chose the chocolate and pear, with a wonderful selection of petit fours with our tea
Quite the place for a gossip and a listen are the bathrooms at The Ritz. Time your visit for in between Afternoon Tea sittings and you have quite the mothers meeting down there. This carpet too, isn’t it something out of a Disney film!? We could have stayed all afternoon. I left pining to return. Just a few hours at this historic hotel has left me with the most wonderful memories of perfect service, company and hopes to return when i’m back in London.
If you are thinking of a super special place to celebrate an occasion, don’t hesitate to consider The Ritz Restaurant.
The Ritz Hotel, 150 Picadilly, London W1JR 9BR
With the hugest thanks to The Ritz Hotel & Jackie McDevitt
LWSY March 2017