The Savoy – 14 October 2020 – 14/10/2020 – Wednesday – ITV
This week, it’s the week leading up to the BAFTA film awards and a Hollywood legend checks in and puts Sean’s butler skills to the test.
Renowned for its VIP service, the five-star Savoy has long been a destination for world leaders, royalty and A-listers and every February the hotel’s guest list swells with film stars from across the globe who head to London for the BAFTA film awards.
Phil Barnes, Managing Director says: “There are those individuals who are very famous who come walking through the front door, up the stairs into the American bar and everyone says, ‘That’s so-and-so’. Then the other extreme, they want to come in through the Queen Mother’s entrance at the side of building, straight into the red lift, straight into their room and they don’t want anyone to bother them.”
It is a busy week for the hotel as they host a series of Bafta related events that see a multitude of celebrity VIPs coming in and out of the hotel.
The Savoy has always been linked to showbusiness through the Savoy theatre. West end star Denise Van Outen takes a trip down memory lane as she goes for a drink at the American Bar with a friend, while Baywatch legend David Hasselhoff is staying at the hotel during his run in the theatre’s production of 9 to 5.
Phil Barnes says: “Everybody gets excited when they see a movie star or a rock star. Discretion is something we talk to all the colleagues about. Our guests come to us because we protect their privacy. If the word gets out that we don’t do that, they don’t come here.”
But the most important and lucrative VIPs at the hotel are the regular guests. Mother of four Alice Evans checks in to one of the butler suites where she is taken care of by her favourite butler, Richard. Alice explains to Richard that she is only drinking Red Admiral butterfly milk in her coffee at the moment.
Alice says: “I have called The Savoy a very expensive hospital, because I have been here when I’ve been pretty low, and I’ve been cared for really. When I come and stay here, I feel special.”
Head butler Sean is showing newest butler Michael the ropes about discretion and how to look after the hotel’s most important guests, including the secret entrances and to refer to the guest using only their room number and never by name.
Sean tells Michael: “This lift is a great place to get people in and out without being seen and without the paparazzi…very important – eyes down, no looking, no hearing.”
Sean says: “There is a very busy high volume of people with demands, whoever the celeb is – special dietary requirements or they like their room temperature this, that or the other. But that’s all part of the fun of it.”
Sean has a secret treasure trove of unexpected items likely to be requested by certain guests, with everything from dog beds to fresh juice squeezers and picnic baskets. He explains: “At The Savoy there is nothing ridiculous, because what’s your ridiculous, might be their normaility.”
Sean takes personal responsibility for looking after a Hollywood actor who is due to stay at the hotel for the awards. But despite his 40 years of experience dealing with special requests, Sean is sent in to a spin when his VIP guest demands a very specific type of £2000 satin bed linen.
About The Savoy
“People come to The Savoy to be entertained, to be wowed, to feel luxury and to feel special. When I was being trained they would hit you, throw things at you… it wouldn’t be appropriate to do things like that now.” Sean, Head Butler at The Savoy
Filled with glamour, elegance, history and character and truly the first luxury hotel in Britain, The Savoy has sat alongside the River Thames for over 130 years. It has hosted rock stars and royalty, Oscar winners and prime ministers and is now opening its famous revolving doors to the cameras in this brand new series for ITV.
Filmed over the most dramatic period of the hotel’s history – from the incredibly busy winter season to its devastating coronavirus shutdown – the series will give viewers a fascinating glimpse into the lives of those lucky enough to be able to afford this slice of luxury, and those who serve them, as cameras capture the upstairs, downstairs and the most secret of corners.
As a global crisis looms, the series sees the challenges the staff face to continue to make the magic happen with their hard work and attention to detail before the hotel was forced to shut its doors for the first time ever in its history.
This is the first time an iconic hotel has been filmed using an innovative state-of-the-art luxury multi-camera rig, providing unique and intimate access into the intoxicating world of this prestigious location.
This is the story of The Savoy as it has never been seen before.
This show is broadcast on ITV.
Latest Episodes of The Savoy
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