Back to former glory:
What does Tina Turner, Lionel Richie, Paul McCartney, Mick Jagger, Ray Charles, Paul Anka, Marlene Dietrich and Enrico Caruso have in common with Herbert Hoover, George H. W. Bush, John F. Kennedy, Helmut Kohl, Angela Merkel, Margaret Thatcher, Elizabeth II - and Dalai Lama?
They have all been staying at Hotel Bristol in Warsaw. The same goes for Marie Curie, Sophia Loren and Bill Gates - the list of prominent guests from all over the world just goes on and on...
Located close to Old Town, at the corner of Krakowskie Przedmieście and Karakowa Street, and designed in Neo-Renaissance style, the luxurious Hotel Bristol was constructed between April 22nd 1899 and November 17th 1901, to be opened two days later.
Following the German invasion in 1939, the hotel was forced to function as headquarter for the Nazi-appointed Chief of the Warsaw District.
The building luckily survived the war realatively unscarthed, standing nearly alone among the rubble of its neighborhood. After the war the hotel was quickly renovated, to reopen in 1945.
Two years later the City of Warsaw took over operation of the hotel, and in 1948 it was nationalized. But public plans to convert the hotel to serve as library for the University of Warsaw never materialized, and it was closed in 1981.
After the fall of Communism in 1989, the hotel was finally completely restored during the years 1991-1993 to its former glory, with the original interiors of the public rooms recreated to match the 1901 designs. And after the extensive restoration works, the 5-star historic luxury hotel was officially reopened in December 1992 - by Margaret Thatcher...
With its 168 rooms and 38 suites, Hotel Bristol now is listed as a national monument. Prices are high, but the hotel certainly offers a superlative experience - the restaurants included. While the Malinowa restaurant provides exemplary Polish/French cuisine, the Marconi restaurant specializes in Italian dishes.
The Bristol also are among the few hotels were even pets are allowed.