One of the most iconic Hollywood costumes ever, Dorothy’s original dress from the Wizard of Oz, was just on display in the lobby of The Stafford London by Kempinski. For guests at the hotel and visitors and locals in London who didn’t get a chance to see the white puff-sleeve blouse and blue gingham pinafore worn by Judy Garland in the movie classic, they can still come into the hotel’s American Bar and click their heels in celebration.
With Halloween approaching, guests and visitors to The Stafford can celebrate the dress that spawned countless Halloween costumes since 1939, when the film was released. From October 15-31, anyone who comes to the hotel’s American Bar wearing their own ruby red slippers will receive a Halloween “treat” - a complimentary glass of champagne.
Dorothy’s original dress will go to auction at Julien’s Auction House on November 10-11. Although several identical dresses were made for the production, the dress to be sold at Julien’s is the only version seen in the film and the only complete original dress to survive. It is expected to sell for half a million dollars at auction.
The Stafford’s American Bar first got its name back in the 1930s, when cross-Atlantic ocean-liner travel reached its peak, and most West End hotels in London renamed their bar ‘The American Bar’ in an attempt to attract the business of the increasing numbers of North American visitors. These intrepid travelers brought with them such exotic drinks as Manhattans, Martinis, Sidecars and The Vanderbilt and so the cocktail era in the UK was born. The Stafford is one of the last two hotels in London (the other one is The Savoy) to retain this moniker. During the Second World War, The Stafford also served as a club for American and Canadian officers stationed overseas who sought refuge in the hotel’s 380-year- old Wine Cellar during the Blitz. This led to the formation, in later years, of the Better ‘Ole Club whose membership includes guests recognized for services above and beyond the call of duty – one of its most famous members is HRH the Prince of Wales.
Today, the Stafford remains a favorite of visiting Americans wanting to celebrate the rich history that the United States and Britain shares. While the hotel provides an authentic British setting it has made a point of ensuring its overseas guests have all the comforts of home through a variety of little touches ranging from favorite foods and cocktails to the installation of 110 Volt plugs fit to American Standards in all their guest rooms.
Winter Breaks at The Stafford London offers 30% off the room rate for a three-night stay during the weekend from Friday to Sunday inclusive. Rates from 660.00 GBP. This offer is excl 20% VAT and excluding 5% discretionary service charge.
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