Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Luxury Left Us Starstruck

Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Luxury Left Us Starstruck

Article excerpt

really didn't feel like taking in any more sightseeing, so after a coffee we returned to the hotel where we were delighted to find a selection of complimentary cakes in our room.

After a day with little rest, we were exhausted, so were pleased to have such luxurious surroundings to cocoon ourselves in.

Our evening meal in the hotel's Flemings Grill was truly fit for a king and it was served up in opulent surroundings to suit the fine fare.

The bar area was no exception, having been transformed as part of the hotel's multi-million pound refurbishment over recent months. We sat back and indulged in a bottle of house Champagne.

Next day, after a hearty breakfast, and on a tight budget after splashing out on the champers, we decided to walk to King's Cross to catch our train out of London. In spite of the cold weather, we thought it was a good idea to walk to the station rather than take the tube.

I carry my camera with me at all times - a tactic which on this occasion worked out well.

We were in Leicester Square when we saw the red carpet being rolled out. Being inquisitive, we wanted to know who it was for. And after an overall wait of an hour and a half in the big freeze, we found out. It was the premiere of Invictus.

Perhaps due to all the build-up, I was mildly disappointed when Clint Eastwood and Morgan Freeman turned up. My fond memories of The Good, The Bad and The Ugly may have coloured my expectations somewhat, but both old-pros headed straight for the TV cameras rather than the fans. Matt Damon, on the other hand, was a star, signing autographs for anyone and everyone.

With only half an hour to spare to catch our train, we had to fight our way through the crowds to get back on the Piccadilly Line, but we found a relatively empty car, which soon became packed after we boarded.

I was worried that when our stop came up we might have trouble getting out. It depended on which side the door opened, since we were near one side with several layers of people between us and the other side. …

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