Set to open in late 2016, and blending the best of Indian culture, hospitality and cuisine with the finest Victorian architecture, the five star The Lalit London will be located in a Grade II-Listed property which was originally designed by Edward Mountford, the architect of the Old Bailey. Built in two phases, in 1893 and 1896, the building’s incredible heritage will see it become one of the city’s most unique and desirable destinations.
Located in Queen Elizabeth Street near the approach to Tower Bridge, the edifice originally housed St Olave's Grammar School and, more recently, Lambeth College.
The building’s redevelopment and renovation is being handled by the multi award winning EPR Architects (The In & Out, Fortnum & Mason), whilst Archer Humphryes (Chiltern Firehouse) is responsible for the interior design.
The centrepiece of this breathtaking project will undoubtedly be the former Great Hall, where the timber panelling, vaulted ceiling and gallery is being sympathetically restored to provide the perfect backdrop for The Lalit London’s pan Indian restaurant, Baluchi. This signature concept, which is already in place in many of the brand’s hotels, will offer the capital an exciting new destination restaurant, as well as providing guests with an outstanding in-house facility.
The former Governors’ Room meanwhile, with its panelled walls and elaborate plaster ceiling, will be converted into a cocktail bar.
Equally dramatic will be The Lalit London’s 70 guestrooms - almost all of which will be different in design and layout - with the bedrooms on the top floor boasting 30-foot high ceilings. In addition, the Headmaster’s Room on the first floor will be transformed into a luxury suite.
Overseen by Dr Jyotsna Suri, the group’s Chairperson & Managing Director, the new fixtures and fittings - from free standing carved screens to bedheads made from traditional fabrics - will utilise the finest Indian artefacts and materials.
The Lalit London will also house Rejuve – The Spa. Again based on the hugely successful concept that guests are offered in no less than ten of the brand’s properties, this award-winning facility offers a complete holistic experience encompassing aroma, ayurvedic, herbal and natural therapies, patented colour healing and yoga. Guests staying at the hotel will also be able to enjoy a state-of-the-art gym.
The stunning design is not just confined to the hotel interiors. The outside space is being transformed using dramatic topiary creations and Indian stone sculptures by The Lalit group’s longtime collaborator, Parisian landscape artist Olivier Vecchierini. Overlooked by The Great Hall, a spacious terrace will offer al fresco dining.
The opening of The Lalit London sees the culmination of a long-held ambition by Keshav Suri, executive director of The Lalit Suri Hospitality Group. "My family has a karmic connection with this city, in fact all of us have grown up or studied in London. My father passed away here in 2006 and since then my mother, Dr Suri, and I have wanted to fulfill his wish of owning a hotel in London and I am glad that is finally becoming a reality.”
Headquartered in New Delhi, The Lalit Suri Hospitality Group opened its first hotel here in 1988 and is now India’s largest and fastest growing privately owned hotel group. Today its portfolio features 11 deluxe properties: The Lalit New Delhi; The Lalit Mumbai; The Lalit Grand Palace Srinagar; The Lalit Golf & Spa Resort Goa; The Lalit Ashok Bangalore; The Lalit Laxmi Vilas Palace Udaipur; The Lalit Temple View Khajuraho; The Lalit Resort & Spa Bekal (Kerala); The Lalit Jaipur; The Lalit Chandigarh and The Lalit Great Eastern Kolkata. In addition it operates two mid-segment hotels under the brand name ‘The Lalit Traveller’ -The Lalit Traveller Jaipur and The Lalit Traveller Khajuraho.
Upcoming hotels include properties in Ahmedabad and Amritsar in India and Koh Samui in Thailand.