May Fair reopens after $140mn revamp

13th Oct 2006

Following a £140 million restoration, London’s iconic May Fair celebrates its grand opening on November 2, 2006.

The 406-room, five-star hotel has been extensively renovated and updated, bringing an eclectic luxury style to the historic West End hotel that first opened in 1927 with King George V and Queen Mary in attendance. 

From Fendi furnishings, Baccarat chandeliers (including the largest Baccarat chandelier in Europe) and the largest private theater in London to the May Fair Bar - which is already a local favorite—and ten new spacious signature suites, The May Fair is leading a renaissance of the luxury hotels in London.  The restoration, which touched virtually every space within the hotel, also included the addition of ten stylish “al fresco” guest rooms featuring outdoor terraces with ornamental gardens, a new Asian-inspired new
spa and restaurant. 

For all of its in-depth renovation and design innovation, at the heart of the “new” May Fair is an unwavering commitment to providing anticipatory guest service.  “Service is our number one priority. We want every guest to feel they are in a special place,” says general manager Charles Oak. “We’ve found that many five-star hotels can have oppressive settings. We offer a type of high-end service that is ‘luxury without pretension,’ so guests feel at ease. This service combined with our innovative features has The May Fair
positioned to be one of Europe’s leading hotels.”

Highlights of the ambitious top-to-bottom renovation project include the addition of an entire new floor, a completely new wing at the rear of the building and 80 new guest rooms. Intelligently designed, the generously sized guest rooms feature Bang and Olufsen television and digital entertainment systems, dual-line telephones, modem connections, refrigerators and complimentary bottled water. 


Among these new rooms are the hotel’s 10 signature suites, featuring furniture from top designers such as Andrew Martin, Cattelan and Fendi; be-spoke beds and individually designed hand made carpets. The new Penthouse Suite offers a large terrace area, suitable for private entertaining. The new Azure Suite features its own private elevator, ideal for guests looking for privacy.

The completely redesigned May Fair Bar has already become one of the most stylish meeting places in the West End.  With its specially commissioned painting of Tibetan monks and contemporary furnishings, the bar has the comfortable atmosphere of an art gallery.  Guests enjoy the bar’s signature cocktail and bar snack, the May Fair Mojito and pistachios, as well as traditional British fare such as fish and chips and cottage pie.

A bustling kitchen, in full view of the dining room, is the focal point of The May Fair’s new restaurant, Amba bar and grill.  A stunning space featuring granite floors, leather upholstery and rich amber wall coverings, the restaurant exudes contemporary elegance.  The restaurant’s seasonal British menu pairs traditional favorites with more modern and imaginative fare.  Selections include Wild Mushroom and Leek Pie, Grilled Loin of Yorkshire Pork and Seared Glenarm Salmon with Cauliflower Cream and Watercress.

When guests wish to unwind, the May Fair Spa is an Asian-inspired sanctuary in the heart of the city.  The spa features seven treatment rooms, a hammam relaxation room, herbal sauna, aromatic steam room, multi-sensory storm shower, and a fitness center.  A range of spa services are available, including the spa’s signature treatment, the Cleopatra Bathing Experience, a mineralizing mud and natural salt bath.

In a nod to the hotel’s history (it was once owned by the Danziger brothers, the American film impresarios who founded the New Elstree studios), The May Fair now features London’s largest and most modern private screening room. Seating 201, The May Fair Theater is a sought-after venue for movie screenings, theatrical performances and other events. The theater features an Audience Response System and microphone at each seat, allowing the host to gauge the mood and responses of the audience instantly and effortlessly.

Business travelers will appreciate the hotel’s range of well-designed services and amenities, including complimentary wireless Internet access in all guest rooms and public spaces, as well as a 24-hour Business Centre.

For meetings, the hotel offers 15,000 square feet of meeting space, including the exquisite Crystal Room. A spectacular setting for gala
functions, the grand room features the largest Baccarat chandelier ever in Europe.


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