Last weekend involved a road trip up to the West Midlands
And an overnight stay in the Regent Hotel Leamington Spa, now a travel lodge.
It is a beautiful grand old lady of a building and had me wondering about it’s history. Wikipedia told me this:
In 1809, a plot of land was purchased to build the hotel on, which cost £1,000. The foundation stone was laid eight years later, on 18 July 1818 by the granddaughter of the original landowner. The hotel was officially opened on 19 August 1819. The hotel opened as Williams Hotel, but 3 weeks later was renamed The Regent by permission of the then Prince Regent (George IV). In 1830 Princess Victoria, then aged 11, apparently stayed overnight at the hotel with her father. Eight years later from the balcony of the hotel it was announced that Victoria, now Queen, had allowed the prefix Royal on its name, which the town still bears to the day. Moving to more modern times, the cast and crew of the British comedy Keeping Up Appearances stayed at the hotel whilst filming in Leamington. For some years now the hotel has been a Grade II listed building and in 1998 the hotel closed its doors. In 2003 however it was decided that the hotel was to be extensively redecorated and refurbished as part of a scheme to regenerate the surrounding area.
Leamington was also beautiful on a chilly May Sunday morning. I love the architecture and the wide tree- lined avenues.
Couldn’t live in the Midlands. The draw of the coast is too strong, not to mention the warmer climes in the South East of England. However there is still something magical about the Shires- historical and literary.
Winter afternoon treat at the Grand Hotel Eastbourne today. The epitome of old Englishness and luxury, I never tire of this fabulous hotel. Was interested to see whose shoes I followed into that beautiful building. Apparently Claude Debussy, Ernest Shackleton, Charlie Chaplin, Dame Helen Mirren, John Hurt and Bros have all preceded me:
Martin Luther King. Inspirational Baptist minister and political activist, he played a key role in ending legal segregation of African-American citizens and the 1964 Civil Rights Act. He won the Nobel Peace Prize in 1964.
In 2017 I toured America’s Deep South and was moved beyond words to retrace Martin Luther King’s history.
‘You are not only responsible for what you say, but also for what you do not say’ Martin Luther King’.
Funky Blue are the resident band on the Braemar cruise ship. They’re a covers band playing Rock, Pop and Motown from the fifties right through to the present day. As well as sail away and deck parties they also play three or four sets a night in the Coral Club Lounge. I’m slightly biased- my partner is the band leader- but they are a fabulous feel good party band that immediately gets the audience on their feet dancing the night away.
When not on the ship they are available for weddings, parties and anything else requiring fabulous live music.
This 14th century hotel is situated in one of England’s prettiest villages, within the fabulous South Downs. The gardens are absolutely beautiful and it has a heated swimming pool available from May to September. The rooms are quaint and quintessentially English, as is the whole of the hotel and gardens. Boasting a two AA Rosettes for culinary excellence, breakfast is a delicious range of continental and full English, there is a bar serving bar snacks, a restaurant and a terrace where you can enjoy afternoon tea in the sunshine.
I was here for a wedding on this occasion, but I will certainly be returning for lunch/dinner and definitely an afternoon tea, after a wander around the very cute village, or a trek across the South Downs.