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Leander Paes

Leander Paes
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The tennis ace enjoyed the heritage feel of his hotel, close to the home of the British monarch

Kavita Devgan
April 24 , 2014
01 Min Read

OT: Which is your favourite hotel in the world?
Leander Paes: During international tournaments, I have stayed at some of the most elite addresses. It’s difficult to pick one favourite. One hotel that caught my attention recently is the Sofitel London St James (from $400; sofitelstjames.com).

OT: When did you visit?
Leander Paes: It was a short trip last year, when the hotel I usually stay at was full and a friend recommended this.

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OT: What impressed you?
Leander Paes: I enjoyed the heritage feel of the place — high ceilings, Corinthian-style marble columns and the Big Ben-like clock in the lobby. The St James Bar is inspired by celebrated designer Coco Chanel’s Paris apartment.

OT: Is the location convenient?
Leander Paes: It is very central — Trafalgar Square, Buckingham Palace, Waterloo Place, Piccadilly and Regent Street are all close by. We stayed in the Royal Suite, which overlooks Waterloo Place.

OT: Any special meals?
Leander Paes: I loved the charcuterie at The Balcon restaurant, where I ate with a foodie friend. The charcutier dished up some unique and delicious Welsh and French platters. The chef made us a great beef and foie gras cottage pie with chanterelle mushrooms, a sturdy dish with three slabs of foie gras atop the mashed potato, oozing dark gravy. The rare teas served at the Rose Lounge were nice, too.

OT: Will you visit again soon?
Leander Paes: As soon as I figure out my calendar — I get to London at least once a year, if not more.


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