Meet our new Head Chef, Ian Howard
We head into Galvin at The Athenaeum’s kitchen to find out more about our new Head Chef, Ian Howard.
31st December 2018
We redesigned our rooms and suites in 2018 with the help of renowned interior designer Martin Hulbert and his team. Flooded with natural light and with extraordinary views of Green Park and the Victorian red-brick townhouses of Mayfair, all our bedrooms and suites offer a truly original experience of London. British-sourced fabrics, silk-clad furniture and classic weaves such as herringbone add to the luxurious experience of being our guest. Art Deco touches also tie the rooms in with the experience of our ground floor lounge area.
Part of our design overhaul included some bespoke artworks that Martin Hulbert and his team conceptualised. Based on the concept of old theatre sets with layers of detail, these newly commissioned artworks capture the eccentric spirit and artistic DNA of The Athenaeum. The collage-style pieces create a new spin on the local landmarks of Buckingham Palace, Burlington Arcade, Fortnum & Mason and the Royal Academy of Arts (RA), and depict everything from David Attenborough riding an elephant to the Queen with her Corgis.
Providing a retreat from the rest of London, our bar has also been redesigned, with design touches such as jewel-toned chairs by Kinnersley Kent Design. Cosy nooks and intimate seating areas provide the ideal space to relax and unwind, with some spots overlooking our magnificent living wall on the façade of our iconic building. Our drinks offering also provides a one-of-a-kind experience in London. Take your pick from more than 100 whisky bottlings, or choose a decadent cocktail from our menu designed by award-winning barman Gennaro Schiano.
One of the latest strings to our bow is The View, a private members-style club on the top-floor of the hotel. With floor-to-ceiling windows, this is where London’s panorama is laid out before your eyes. Guests can now enjoy a daily drink and nibbles here, as well as a rotating calendar of exclusive events, from G&T masterclasses to mindfulness sessions overlooking Green Park.
We had no shortage of amazing events, special experiences and new initiatives at The Athenaeum in 2018 too. We hosted Galería Gaudí’s first major UK exhibition to showcase the work of the world’s most talented artists, where we also served Gaudí-inspired cocktails. For Chocolate Week, we created a decadent Chocolate Afternoon Tea with a menu filled with new creations by the Michelin-starred Galvin brothers, using the world’s best chocolates. During 2018, we also started a partnership with Clean the World, where guests’ unused toiletries are recycled into soaps and hygiene products to help vulnerable children and families avoid disease across the world. We turned our outdoor terrace into our very own magical winter wonderland, with warming cocktails, heaters, blankets and festive fondue treats. Plus we created an indoor festive area just for children, where they could play and take Polaroid pictures with Santa and his reindeer.
Join us for a stay and special occasions during 2019, as we’ve got plenty more like this coming up!
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