Luxury Hotels


London’s Café Royal Hotel showed how splendidly to host a press event. First you need the location, which the hotel has. Right on London’s Regent Street, and barely five minutes’ walk north of Piccadilly Circus tube, it is easy to get to. And it has unique history, built in 1865 by Sir John Nash and at various times associated with Oscar Wilde, Aubrey Beardsley, Virginia Woolf and David Bowie.

Timing and organisation. A morning event that starts at 9am with full cold buffet breakfast laid on gives everyone time to get there and, afterwards, go to wherever. There were plenty of alert hotel staff around.

The occasion was a partnership announcement between Regent Seven Sea Cruises and Global Hotel Alliance (GHA), specifically GHA’s DISCOVERY loyalty programme. This was announced some months ago and is apparently going greatest guns in Japan and elsewhere in Asia.

The event, on Wednesday this last week, 3rd July, was to introduce the partnership’s CONCIERGE COLLECTION, which offers one-off experiences that can be added to a cruise. To give an example, Hotel Café Royal is part of The Set Collection, which is one of 40 brands that form GHA. The specific CONCIERGE COLLECTION special at this hotel  consists of a three-night stay, a welcome cocktail party, a private tour of Westminster Abbey and seats of power, and a curated River Thames lunch tour – and transport to Southampton to board a ship sailing 23rd June 2025 for Ireland and Iceland, or, on 7th August 2025, for a tour of the Baltic.

Similar CONCIERGE COLLECTION ‘specials’ are offered by GHA hotels in Rome, The Anantara Palazzo Naiadi; Istanbul, Ciragan Palace Kempinski; Venice, San Clemente Palace Kempinski; Athens, Divani Apollon Palace and Thalasso; and Amsterdam, The Conservatorium. All link immediately to a Regent Seven Seas cruise. RSSC.COM/CONCIERGE-COLLECTION

And finally, of course, a good press event needs not only content but people. This had a substantial turn-out, which included the CEOs of two GHA brands, The Set Collection (Robin Stangroom) and Ultratravel (Nick Perry). The presentation featured Regent Seven Seas Cruises’ sales and marketing supergal Caroline Smith and Kempinski’s head of global luxury leisure sales Piotr Truty. See them above. They were moderated by RSSC’s James Arnold.  Honestly, it was so well organised there was barely time even to glance up at a Café Royal ceiling, below.