As the Royal Wedding in London gets closer, we are hearing from agents and specialists about how the city (and Prince William and Kate themselves) are getting ready for the big day. We received this suggestion on where members of the wedding party will stay in London from Maureen Jones of All Horizons Travel:
"It was much loved by the Queen Mother, and these days the Queen and Baroness Thatcher are patrons. My parents always used to stay there when they went to London and I have stayed there a couple of times before I go north to Scotland.
"For four days in April, the Goring Hotel near Buckingham Palace will be taken over by the family and friends of Kate Middleton, together with Williams’s chums for the royal wedding. The wedding is on Friday 29 April, 2011.
"I just heard from my sister in London that Kate is thinking of basing herself at the same hotel for the night before the ceremony. Certainly that’s the talk among excited staff at the five star hotel where double rooms cost 345 pounds a night. The couple chose the Goring for their guests because it is close to the Palace where their reception will be held after the Westminster Abbey nuptials.
"If Kate also stays there, it would be in tune with her wish to ensure her wedding is not overblown with pomp and pageantry. She has, remember, declined a horse drawn carriage ride to the Abbey choosing instead to go by car. Determined to avoid comparisons with Princess Diane who did go by a glass coach, Kate would avoid another by staying in a hotel. Lady Diane Spencer spent her wedding night at Clarence House, now the home of Prince Charles. Kate is unlikely to want to do the same.
"It would also give her one last unmarried night with her parents, Michael and Carole, just like more modern young brides.
"London is expecting two million visitors to see the wedding procession. Hotel space will be hard to find. No country puts on a ceremonial parade like England. Even if you don’t go into the streets, everything will be on the tele – the BBC and ITV will be covering it for 24 hours.
"A suggestion for those visiting London. Go to Chancery Lane, lots of good restaurants and great shops. Go see the world famous London Silver Vaults housing the largest collection of antique and modern silver for sale anywhere in the world."