|One happy DB lurking in the shade of a pillar|
|St Pancras from the outside|
I have been wanting to scope out the St Pancras Hotel for literally decades!
In the olden days when I commuted to the City everydayI used the Commuter Link - a bus that went from just around The Little House directly to the City of London, making frequent stops along the way. When I stopped working in the City the Commuter Link stopped, too, and henceforth travellers have to go to Victoria or Marble Arch.
Anyway, this bus went past the St Pancras Hotel, though it wasn't a hotel then, but used as a taxi rank and other seedy purposes. They were building the National Library, and every day I was driven past huge billboards featuring famous librarians, that were hiding the passers-by from the building site.
This went on for some eleven years. You can therefore imagine my delight when I found out that St Pancras, which was pushed by greedy developers who were hoping to demolish the building into wreck and ruin, was going to be rebuild and refurbished!!!!
As soon as the process had been completed I went for a visit, but finances being tight, and time precious, I never actually managed to go on a tour of the hotel.
Such tours have to be arranged by telephone, one can't just wander in, and they are not as frequent as one might wish. I had been several times close to booking one, but what with one thing and another never actually went through with it.
So for my birthday treat my ever obliging Triplets arranged the whole thing, inclusive a High Tea event at the German Gymnasium afterwards.
What can I say, it was simply monumental!
Our host and guide was extremely knowledgeable - though I did quibble with him about some details - and since it was just us Triplets plus one interloper the tour was both enjoyable and very much tailored to our needs.
I could bore you with details, but others, more attentive to the details that should be included in any description of such a building, have gotten there first, so I just provide some links, and you can do your own research.
150 years St Pancras Station BBC short film
BBC St Pancras Station long film
Saint Pancras architecture Sir Gilbert Scott - shows the building before it was spruced up and became a hotel again
Dan Cruikshank on the Scott family Part 1 (very recommended - if only because it shows that I was right when I disagreed with the guide about the Scotts in Oxford)
Dan Cruikshank Part 2
Dan Cruikshank Part 3
Dan Cruikshank Part 4
The photos were mainly taken by our Dear Third - my camera went on the blink and I had to rely on her telephone's amazing ability to take photos. All photos are from the inside of the hotel. Not of the actual rooms, since they are occupied by paying guests, or owned by wealthy individuals. Thus most photos of starcases - but what staircases!
|DB flanked by the Guide and the Interloper|
|Wall decoration in the sitting room of one of the grandest hotel suites|
So what do you think, £800 million spent well?