Silver Screen Legend Robert De Niro Opens His Third Luxury Hotel in London
Robert De Niro recently received permission to open a luxury boutique hotel in London’s West End. The location will have 83 rooms, two restaurants, a spa, and a private member’s club. This will be the actor’s third venture into hotel ownership.
The actor, known for his starring roles in films like Taxi Driver, Raging Bull, and The Godfather II transitioned into the hospitality industry later in his career through his relationship with BD Hotels. The Wellington, the new London establishment, will also be managed by BD Hotels. The complex will be located in Covent Garden in the West End’s theater district. It will be located near The Lyceum Theatre (home of the Lion King production), the London Transport Museum, the Duchess Theatre, and the Strand Palace Hotel.
According to London’s Daily Mail, “Construction, permitted by Westminster City Council, will involve redeveloping six buildings, three of which are Grade II-listed. The development will include two restaurants – one which will cater for up to 150 diners, with an overflow dining room to provide for a further 120 guests.” The structure will be eight stories high and will be built around a central courtyard. It will include both office and retail space. The structure will refurbish six Victorian-era and 20th Century buildings, honoring the history and culture of the area in its design.
The actor’s other two hotels are The Greenwich, located in New York City, and Nabu in the Philippines. He also owns more than 20 restaurants around the world as well. It is certainly not a new phenomenon for Hollywood celebrities to invest in the hospitality industry. De Niro joins the ranks of other hotel owners such as Clint Eastwood, Hugh Jackman, and Elizabeth Hurley. Leonardo DiCaprio apparently also plans to build a luxury resort in Belize by 2018.
De Niro first announced his plans for The Wellington in May. Hellomagazine.com reports him as 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.”
While The Greenwich, located in Tribeca, where the actor’s reputable international film festival is also located, has received stellar reviews, the response has been mixed for Manila’s Nabu hotel in the Philippines. It was actually on the list of the worst luxury hotels in 2015.
The Wellington seems to be managed with the interest and enthusiasm necessary for success. Robert Davis, deputy leader of Westminster City Council, spoke about De Niro’s London project: “This is one of the finest schemes we have considered for Covent Garden in years. The design is of the highest quality and it fits the bill as a Covent Garden building that meshes the new with the old. The hotel will attract visitors from all over the world.”
Chris Burch is a venture capitalist and founder of Burch Creative Capital.