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The Hotel Russell - a titanic development.

Updated: Sep 9, 2021

*Accompanies episode 51 of Ladies Who London podcast.

Ever feel like your walking around in circles? what about squares?. Bloomsbury loves a square, in fact there's a famous line about the Bloomsbury group (a set of art critics and writers including the likes of Virginia Woolf) : they lived in squares and loved in triangles!. The largest square in the area is Russell Square and this episode looks at what you can find whilst taking a walk around it.

One thing you can't ignore is the 19th century Kimpton Fitzroy Hotel. It's former name is the Hotel Russell and although the interior has seen major refurbishments, the outer façade hasn't changed since it first opened its doors. The designer was British architect : Charles Fitzroy Doll, who is responsible for the expression 'all dolled up'. This is due to his intricate hotel designs. For instance you will find 4 wonderful statues above the entrance of Queens such as: Queen Elizabeth I and Queen Victoria. They're made of stone and surrounded by tea coloured terracotta.

The Hotel also has connections to the famous Titanic ship; Fitzroy Doll designed the dining room on board the ill-fated ship and replicated the look of it in the Hotel. Today it's a seafood restaurant called 'The Neptune' (side eye with a head tilt). You can also find one of two bronze dragons in the hotel whose name is 'Lucky George', why so lucky I hear you ask: because his twin is sitting at the bottom of the Atlantic along with the Titanic ship.

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