The Notebook

At Rocco Forte Hotels

Follow The Notebook to stay up to date with the latest news and happenings in our hotels and destinations across the globe.

The Best Champagnes for Christmas
Nothing adds sparkle to Christmas celebrations like an elegant flute of fizz. Selected by our expert sommeliers at The Charles Hotel in Munich and Brown’s Hotel in London, these excellent Champagnes are the best way to toast the season in style.
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RT @HotelSpaceMag: Can Faik talks to grande dame within the field of hospitality @olgapolizzi, Deputy Chairman and Director of Design at Ro…
RT @SavoyFirenze: Discover "The very Best of Europe's Christmas Markets" with @RF_Hotels! https://t.co/9GZg2bxHGv #RFHotels https://t.co/uq…
RT @Design_Holidays: It's almost Christmas @Design_Holidays as the lovely @Fortnums #champagne arrived this am. Thanks @Verdura_Resort @RF_…
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Glittering Italian Takeover at Brown's Hotel this Christmas
This winter, you can drink and dine La Dolce Vita at Brown’s Hotel with its incredible Italian takeover. Celebrate the season with mixologist, Salvatore Calabrese, who is taking up residence in the elegant Donovan Bar. His extraordinary Martini and Negroni menu includes some of his own greatest hits, as well as exclusive bespoke creations.
London
The Art of Ora: Chef Heinz Beck on His New Pop-Up at Brown's Hotel
With three Michelin stars at his esteemed Rome restaurant, La Pergola, distinguished chef Heinz Beck needs little introduction. His exquisite, artfully presented dishes have captivated everyone from Michelle Obama to Julia Roberts. This winter Heinz arrives at Brown’s Hotel for a sensational six-week Italian takeover. Here, Heinz shares the concept behind his exciting new pop-up restaurant, Ora, as well as the processes that make his incredible cuisine is so internationally revered.
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Lydia Forte's Ultimate Christmas Hamper
Elegantly filled with all manner of delights, nothing beats a gourmet hamper as the ultimate Christmas gift. It’s easy to buy great hampers, but it’s just not the same as putting one together yourself. Here are a few of my tips on how to create an exceptional hamper this Christmas.
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Perfect Party Dressing with Victoria Beckham
In the heart of fashionable Mayfair, Brown’s Hotel is perfectly positioned to access London’s most glamorous boutiques. From Christian Dior to Cartier, you’ll discover the finest clothing, jewellery, art and antiques in this exquisite corner of the capital. White-hot fashion label, Victoria Beckham has a boutique neighbouring Brown’s. Follow the brand’s style and beauty highlights for the winter season below, so you can truly dress to impress this Christmas.
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What to Buy the Discerning Gentleman this Christmas
Whatever the interests of the gentleman in your life, we’ve curated an exceptional Christmas gift guide from the best European boutiques. From stylish, covetable accessories to exhilarating experiences, we’ve got Christmas wrapped.
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Kodomo’s Cass Chapman on Travelling with a Baby
After having her daughter in 2011, luxury lifestyle journalist Cass Chapman launched Kodomo; a travel authority for parents travelling with babies and children. A seasoned globetrotter herself, Cass clocked up plenty of air miles with her two newborns in tow. Here, she reveals the joys of journeying with a baby.
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10 Things You Never Knew About London Fashion Week
Featuring catwalk shows from the finest designers, glittering parties and exciting new trends, London Fashion Week is the ultimate fashion event in the capital. To give you the insider lowdown, here are 10 interesting facts you might not know about London Fashion Week.
London
Tom Parker Bowles' Top Tables
A food critic and gastronome extraordinaire, what Tom Parker Bowels doesn’t know about London’s dining scene isn’t worth knowing. As Brown’s Hotel’s Expert-in-Residence, he’s on-hand to personally curate our guests’ gastronomic experiences. Here, he reveals his insider knowledge of the latest culinary trends and, of course, London’s finest eateries.
London
Wonderful Wedding Gift Packages
Sometimes it’s so difficult to know what to get someone special for their wedding day. Wedding lists are so impersonal, so why not give them an experience they will always remember. From pampering spa treatments for two to delightful afternoon tea, these extremely spoiling gift package ideas will make every happy couple feel truly blessed.
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Five Unforgettable Experiences in London for Children
At Rocco Forte Hotels, our little guests as just are important as our big ones. We are delighted to present a selection of endlessly entertaining, bespoke experiences in London for children. Expertly curated by our Fun-Makers-in-Residence at Brown’s, these five adventures are magical moments your family will never forget.
London
Discover Lydia Forte’s Brown’s Hotel Instagram Diary
Bar and Restaurant Development Manager for Rocco Forte Hotels and daughter of Sir Rocco Forte, Lydia Forte has her hands on Brown’s Hotel’s Instagram account for an exciting three-day takeover. Here, she grants an exclusive peek into her London diary, revealing what she got up to over the course of three captivating days.
London
Insider: The right kind of look by David Gandy
Insiders by Rocco Forte Hotels gives guests the unique opportunity to discover some of our cities’ best-kept secrets, as told by locals. Our guest editors range from world-famous actors and respected authors to the masterminds of a city’s cultural scene.
London
Choosing the Right Savile Row Tailors
A bespoke suit is a wardrobe essential and in London there’s no better place to commission one than Savile Row. The heart of men’s tailoring in the capital, the street has long been an enviable postcode, with many of the best Savile Row tailors sitting side by side, offering bespoke, made-to-measure and ready-to-wear suits and clothing. Faced with so many excellent options, it’s best to approach a shopping trip with a style in mind. Whether you prefer traditional, country, contemporary or classic designs, follow this guide to find the tailor that best suits you.
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The Most Romantic Places to Propose in Europe
A proposal is an unforgettable moment in a couple’s life together, so make it count by heading to your favourite city for an experience to remember. Whether you prefer historic sights, charming settings or dramatic views, Europe is full of locations providing an incredible backdrop for an engagement. Follow this guide to the most romantic places to propose in Europe and celebrate with Rocco Forte Hotels.
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An Alternative Guide to Christmas in London
The festive period is one of the best times of the year to visit London. Colourful decorations light up the streets, the city explodes with exciting events and an infectious festive buzz fills the air right up until the New Year. With so many people heading to the capital to enjoy a holiday break or do some Christmas shopping, London can get extremely busy. Avoid the crowds and discover a different side to the capital with this alternative guide to Christmas in London.
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Five Beautiful Parks in London for a Picnic
London is at its most beautiful when the sun is shining. The city buzzes as people make the most of the good weather and indulge in one of England’s greatest summer pastimes: a picnic. From deer-watching at Richmond Park to live theatre at Regent’s Park, there’s plenty to entertain while tucking into a feast at one of the many beautiful parks in London. When the sun comes out, follow this guide to the best green spaces to throw down your picnic blanket this summer.
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How to Travel Healthy with Madeleine Shaw
Maintaining a healthy diet and lifestyle is one of the biggest challenges when travelling, as with new cuisines and unusual schedules comes the temptation to let good habits slip. Rocco Forte Hotels has joined forces with Madeleine Shaw, world-renowned trained nutritionist and author of Get The Glow, to tackle this issue and provide guests with guilt-free dining options. Using her years of experience and training, Madeleine has created Rocco Forte Hotels Nourish, a health-focused menu which is available at our restaurants and bars or in guests’ suites. As the new concept launches, we sit down with Madeleine to talk cuisine, philosophies and how travel healthy every time.
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An Insider’s Guide to Mayfair Art Galleries
London’s West End is the artistic heart of the city. While Soho is synonymous with theatre, art is the lifeline of Mayfair. From iconic Cork Street to stylish Albermale Street, home to Brown’s Hotel, this prestigious district is filled with art galleries and showrooms displaying traditional and contemporary works. Whether you’re a collector, an artist, a gallery owner, or simply partial to some window shopping, follow this guide to the best Mayfair art galleries, and find out how to join exclusive tours hosted by Brown’s Hotel.
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Behind the Scenes at Rocco Forte Hotels with Olga Polizzi
Finding a harmonious balance between comfort, character and creativity is an interior designer’s greatest challenge. Aiming to inspire and appease its guests, Rocco Forte Hotels puts a lot of thought into design to ensure that every element of every room is considered. Olga Polizzi, Deputy Chairman and Director of Design, keeps her finger firmly on the pulse of design trends while carefully considering the history and culture of the city where each hotel is based. Enjoy a behind the scenes glimpse of the design process as we speak to Olga about her passion for interiors and the stunning new suites.
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Fulvio Pierangelini's Guide to Italian Cuisine
Simple. Fresh. Local. These are the foundations of traditional Italian cuisine. While emulated across the globe, there are few more qualified to talk about Italian food than Fulvio Pierangelini, Creative Director of Food for Rocco Forte Hotels. The Italian Chef, who’s famous for the success of his Tuscany-based two-Michelin star restaurant Gambero Rosso, was brought on board in 2009 to spearhead Rocco Forte Hotels restaurants and introduce a hearty dose of Italian flair, creativity and harmony to the menus. We sat down with Fulvio to talk about his career in food and the secrets to making excellent, authentic Italian cuisine.
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Behind the Bar with Cocktail Expert Riccardo Vecchio
Cocktail making is an intricate art and the world’s best bartenders are the mixology equivalent of Michelin star chefs. As connoisseurs become increasingly discerning and cocktail drinking develops into an experience rather than simply refreshment, the whole industry is changing, particularly in cosmopolitan cities like London. The Donovan Bar at Brown’s Hotel is one of the bars at the forefront of the revolution. We sat down with Riccardo Vecchio, Head Bartender of The Donovan Bar, to discuss the latest trends in cocktail making and the bar’s innovative new menu.
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The Rocco Forte Suite Experience
The finest way to fully indulge in the Rocco Forte Hotels fantasy is by staying in one of our palatial suites. Dreamt up by Director of Design, Olga Polizzi to reflect the history and culture of the hotel and destination, each suite is classic, contemporary and, above all, exclusive. Fresh for the New Year, Rocco Forte Hotels has updated its Suite Experience with three tiers – Suites, Special Suites and Forte Suites. Devised to take the stress out of staying away from home, every element has been considered, from arrival in the country to check-out, and everything in between.
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Hidden London: 10 Things to do in the Capital
As one of the most historic and innovative cities in the world, London is overflowing with magnificent sites and attractions. However, there’s more to the city than the average guidebook will divulge. When other visitors are crowding around Buckingham Palace, queuing to ride the London Eye or jostling for the perfect shot of Big Ben, discover the city’s lesser-known attractions and experience a whole new world within the capital. From Victorian toys and tea to townhouse museums, here’s our guide to uncovering hidden London.
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Valentine’s Day at Rocco Forte Hotels
Valentine’s Day is touted as the most romantic day of the year, and it can be, if planned correctly. This year, instead of buying a thoughtful but predictable gift, go one step further and surprise your loved one with a romantic minibreak for two. As 14th February falls on a Sunday in 2016, it’s the perfect excuse to jet off and celebrate your relationship in style. With so many options available, we’ve put together a list of leading Valentine’s getaways to some of the world’s most romantic cities. Read on to see how Rocco Forte Hotels can make your trip extra special.
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Welcome to The Notebook
Whether you’re planning a trip or have already touched down, The Notebook is here to excite and inspire. Be it with behind the scenes features and insider guides or articles about the history, culture and ever-evolving food scene in our exceptional host cities, we’ll take you under the skin of each destination and introduce you to the unique story behind our hotels.
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In Conversation with Irene Forte
In keeping with the ‘new year, new you’ tradition, Rocco Forte Hotels is launching a brand new spa concept, bringing five innovative notions together under one umbrella: Rocco Forte Rituals, Forte Organics, Rocco Forte Nourish, Rocco Forte Fitness and Rocco Forte Health. Targeting every element of wellness, from nutrition and exercise to mind, body and soul, Rocco Forte Spas are far more than simply a place to get a quick massage. We sat down with Irene Forte to talk about the inspirations and philosophies behind the new concept, as well as her own thoughts on health and wellness.
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Historical Insider: Brown’s Hotel
The early 1800’s marked an era of technological and industrial revolution in Britain. In the first half of the century alone, enormous leaps were made in terms of transport, power and tourism. At the forefront of this pioneering new era was our own Brown’s Hotel, London’s first. Opening its doors in 1837, Brown’s quickly became a city institution, attracting a discerning international clientele and leading the development of the hotel industry.
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