Welcome Back: Chat With Robert Whitfield, Regional Director UK and General Manager, The Dorchester

Overseeing one particular of the most legendary inns in London, The Dorchester on Park Lane, and its sister house across the street, 45 Park Lane, as very well the countryside counterpart, Coworth Park in Windsor, Robert Whitfield has his pulse on how England’s luxurious hospitality business is navigating COVID-19.  London correspondent Emily Goldfischer had a capture up with him now that all three Dorchester Collection homes have reopened right after lockdown in the U.K. 

Initially, how was the lockdown for the inns?

We adopted the U.K. government’s assistance and shut down in March. We ended up ready to reopen Coworth Park in the countryside faster, more than summer, than we did in this article in London. We are satisfied to say we have retained all our workers across the firm all through lockdown it’s the men and women that make the magic transpire and our precedence was to hold them used. The U.K. governing administration gave us assist, which was fantastic, but in the situations wherever it was considerably less than the normal income, we topped the workers up to make their whole spend.

Now that you have reopened everywhere you go, how is it heading?

Our employees are thrilled to be back again and we are striving to hold points as normal as attainable: No stickers and minimal signage all distancing assistance is performed by way of workers stationed throughout the inns and by the elevators. It is performing well—we are keeping social length in some areas, workers are carrying gloves and some foodstuff and beverage servers are carrying masks. So, whilst we are pursuing governing administration protocols, we have managed to do it in a discreet way. Also, company get it by now, so it is rather quick to regulate. I guess the most significant, most obvious transform is that we have hand sanitizer everywhere you go!

Free of charge Luxurious Journey E-newsletter

Like this story? Subscribe to The Dossier

Luxurious Journey Advisor’s only e-newsletter, covering exceptional destinations and product or service information for affluent travelers. Delivered every single Tuesday & Thursday.

How is occupancy?

Relies upon. In the countryside, Coworth Park had the best August in the historical past of the resort. The fall is very well-booked and we hope additional final-moment reservations, even though we do have a lot of bookings previously for Xmas. People want to rejoice but keep on being anxious about the ever-shifting quarantine limitations. Most bookings are going on inside of of 28 days. We have found a reverse sample in the city, the inns are busier on the weekends with U.K. company driving in for celebrations or to get pleasure from London. 

You’ve not too long ago introduced various foodstuff and beverage alterations, was that because of to COVID-19?

No, it is just coincidental but we have a “new” govt chef in Mario Perera, who actually initially joined The Dorchester more than 18 several years in the past and has risen by way of the culinary ranks, most not too long ago performing instantly underneath his predecessor Stefan Trepp. In his new function as govt chef, Mario has responsibility for overseeing the brigade of additional than 100 cooks in just The Dorchester’s 6 kitchens, serving The Grill, The Promenade, The Bar, personal eating and activities, in-area eating and The Spatisserie at The Dorchester Spa. In excess of at 45 Park Lane, Jamie Shears has joined as govt chef, overseeing the culinary direction of the resort, which include Wolfgang Puck’s famed cafe Minimize at 45 Park Lane. At the moment, we’re identified for the best steak in London, Jamie will create CUT’s menu to rejoice locally sourced components with an emphasis on fish from his house town in Devon, as very well as highlighting vegetarian and vegan dishes, even further boosting the hotel’s commitment to top quality create.

How are the places to eat doing?

Truly very well, actually—people want to get out and try to eat very well! We’ve not too long ago opened new terraces at equally The Dorchester and 45 Park Lane, which have been a big hit. China Tang has been open up considering that July, the three Michelin-star Alain Ducasse has opened for lunch and supper, and we just reopened The Grill. Our ever-common Afternoon Tea is back again in whole swing we’ve even added a pretty interactive “scone trolley” with a variety of scones and selfmade jams rolling by way of the foyer. Guests really like it. Also, as governing administration assistance nevertheless allows weddings and religious ceremonies for up to thirty company, we have been rather occupied doing modest gatherings in our event spaces. 

Have you opened the spa at The Dorchester?

Sure, the spa and health club have reopened by appointment, largely for resort company, even though there are some area members.  The protocol is to clear in concerning each and every guest, which is performing very well so much. We have found locals coming in for facials and massages, so business at the spa is buying up. In a few months time we will open up a new ten,000-sq.-foot spa at 45 Park Lane, in conjunction with the 24 new Mayfair Park Residences, which have been designed adjacent to the resort. The spa is extraordinary, state-of-artwork services with a two,250-sq.-foot, state-of-the-artwork health club, twenty-meter (sixty five-foot) heated swimming pool, separate sauna and steam rooms, hydrotherapy and individual coaching.

What else is new?

We are creating an effort to make the resort additional interactive for company coming into London. We have added some new “behind the scenes” experiences, from historical walking tours of Mayfair with our head of marketing, to unique wine dinners, cooking classes with the cooks and even modest floral arranging classes with our in-home florist Philip Hammond.

For inquiries about VIP Bookings at the Dorchester Collection United kingdom homes, email Alison Rutherford, regional product sales director [email protected]

Linked Article content

Dorchester Collection’s France and Italy Lodges Have Reopened

Kempinski Debuts Sister Resort Roadtrip Itineraries

Three Lodges in Europe Be a part of Small Luxurious Lodges of the Entire world

Celebrated Encounters Debuts New Homestay Division