Saturday, August 20, 2016

De Niro's New Luxury London Venture

The city that Robert De Niro has always been most affiliated with is his hometown of New York - in part, at least, to his acclaimed role in Scorsese's Taxi Driver - but it seems that our own fair capital may have won a piece of his heart. The actor has been granted planning permission by Westminster Council to open a luxury hotel in Covent Garden.

The 83-room Wellington - slated to open its doors in 2019 - will boast a spa, a member's club and two restaurants, reports The Guardian, located in several Victorian buildings across London's Wellington, Tavistock, Burleigh and Exeter streets. 

This marks the Oscar-winning actor's third venture into the hotel business - he opened New York's Greenwich hotel in 2008, which is now home to the Tribeca film festival. Last year, Manila's Nobu hotel, which is co-owned by De Niro, in the Philippines was named one of the worst new luxury hotels by Luxury Travel Intelligence.

In May, he commented on applying for planning permission in the UK, saying: "London is one of the most exciting and cosmopolitan cities in the world. It makes perfect sense to develop a hotel that represents all of that in the heart of this city in Covent Garden. The Wellington hotel will honour the heritage of the area, while bringing the best of what we've done in New York to London."

De Niro is by no means the only Hollywood star to take on the role of hotelier - Clint Eastwood, Richard Gere and Elizabeth Taylor have all made forays into the business - and Leonardo DiCaprio is set to open an eco-friendly resort in Belize in 2018.

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