Fashion Luxury Hotels

Prague Four Seasons – Georgia – Dubai – The Pig

Prague’s Charles Bridge was begun in 1357 for Charles IV. Today, either side of its 515.8m span across the Vltava River, stand, supremely, 15 unique arrangements of lifesize stone statues of named saints (one is a 1714 sculpture of the bridge’s patron saint, St Vitus, a Roman aristocrat killed for his faith). From before dawn, most mornings, there are Korean wedding couples having photos taken on the Bridge – they have been inspired by such Korean television soaps as Lovers in Prague. For those wanting to stay in luxury almost ON the Bridge, head, like Girlahead, for Four Seasons Prague.

Apparently the hotel was the idea of Tony Sharp, son of Four Seasons’ founding chairman Isador Sharp. Why not convert a collection of buildings dating back to the 16th century into a world-class hotel? Today, with interiors by Pierre-Yves Rochon, there are 157 rooms and among the most popular is corner suite 501, looking right out over the River and up the opposite bank to the castle. Girlahead was immediately blown away on arrival at the hotel by a near-overriding perfume of the gigantic flower displays in the main lobby – oh so typically Four Seasons. Later there was an unbelievable emotional moment looking out of suite 501’s windows, at sunset. As the sun went down (see above), it was tempting to open the bottle of Jeio Bisol 1542 Prosecco that awaited in the ice bucket.

In fact that evening was reserved for joining the Luxury Bloc group at a really extraordinary venue, atop Dancing House Hotel, an 18 minutes’ walk away from Four Seasons Prague. Dancing House is named because the 11-floor hotel’s architects, who included Frank Gehry, were loosely inspired by Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers – and yes, the rooftop restaurant where we dined had intra-course tango dancing, see the video, below.  Breakfast was back home at Four Seasons Prague, with ultra-enthusiastic GM Martin Dell, who has finally returned to his homeland after travelling, it seemed, around the world. We sat out on a terrace, overlooking the river and enjoying a local Bohemian egg dish, eggs bound with onions and cabbage (the beautifully patterned china plates elevated such a platter from possibly utilitarian to luxury, but that is the essence of Four Seasons).

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This Wednesday, 16th September, Georgia Prime Minister Giorgi Gakharia hosted an Executive Council meeting in Tbilisi of the UN World Tourism Organization UNWTO. He stressed the importance of tourism, which represents 8.1% of Georgia’s economy: in 2019, the country, which has a population of 3.7 million, recorded 9.4 million international visitors. The Secretary General of UNWTO is Zurab Pololikashvili, and World Tourism Day is 27th September.

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The business traffic between Israel and its newly-acknowledged relations, in Bahrain and UAE, does not lessen. In Dubai, One&Only area boss, forever-stylish Frenchman Olivier Louis – who is also very hands-on MD of One&Only’s Dubai resorts – shared his delight at hosting the very first VIP delegation of 50 Top representative from Israeli world of business and finance to attend the official signing ceremonies in sync with grand ceremony occurring at the White House in Washington. “The delegation was escorted by numerous journalists and such was telecasted in live coverage.  The delegation was extremely delighted with the level of service and product and indeed we have already received numerous follow-through enquiries”, he explained.

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Anyone who is ANYone in England has been to, and invariably loved, staying at a Pig hotel.  Why?  Take a quintessential English country house, possibly already converted into a hotel but not necessarily so.  Put this building, and its surrounding farmland and orchards, in the creative hands of Robin Hutson and his designer wife Judy Hutson. With support of Pig hotels’ backer, Jim Ratcliffe (he of Ineos chemicals, plus the Ineos cycling team, and Grenadier off-road vehicles and much more), the building metamorphoses into a new-look luxury experience that cognoscenti of all ages crave. How does Robin Hutson do it? Listen to him talking on MARY GOSTELOW GIRLAHEAD PODCAST, https://anchor.fm/gostelow

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And now, finish with a short dance at Prague’s Dancing House Hotel