Five Best: Hotels with butlers
Let an expert take the strain from your stay
Saturday 23 July 2005
The Ritz Carlton is located in the Golden Triangle - Kuala Lumpur's answer to Knightsbridge. Butler services include morning tea and coffee, or a "Cleopatra" bath - milk and lavender oil with slices of cucumber for jet-lagged eyes. Each butler can be contacted via a mobile phone, so if you need your bags packed in a hurry, they will be waiting when you're ready to leave.
The Ritz Carlton, 168 Jalan Imbi, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia (00 603 2142 8000; www.ritzcarlton.com). Suites start at 1,265 Ringgits (£195), including breakfast and butler.
Belle Mare Resort, Mauritius
Everything stops for tea at 4pm at the Belle Mare Plage resort on the east coast of Mauritius. It's a rather odd sensation to sip from the best china and nibble cakes beneath swaying palms. But this is just one of the rituals performed by your Villa Master, one of the staff dedicated to looking after guests staying in the resort's 20 two- and three-bedroom villas. Your Villa Master will unpack your clothes, draw your bath, serve breakfast by your private pool, go on errands... in fact, do anything your heart desires. And if you don't give him enough to do, don't be surprised to find your name written out on your bed in frangipani petals.
Belle Mare Plage The Resort, Poste de Flacq, Mauritius (00 230 402 2600; www.bellemareplagehotel.com). Villas start at €945 (£675), including breakfast and butler.
The Howard, Scotland
If you find hotel butler service as commonplace as complimentary shower caps, then head to The Howard for an experience that will impress even the most blasé of guests. Cory Douglas Campbell - former butler at Buckingham Palace - has been appointed as the Georgian townhouse hotel's Head Butler. The Howard's complimentary butler service offers everything from organising evening entertainment or golfing breaks to shoe shining.
The Howard, 34 Great King Street, Edinburgh, Scotland (0131-557 3500; www.thehoward.com). B&B starts at £185, including butler.
Alvear Palace, Argentina
This is one of South America's grandest hotels and first opened in Buenos Aires in 1932. Since then it has welcomed a steady stream of well-heeled guests, so you won't want any post-flight crinkled clothing cramping your style. This isn't an issue at the Alvear, however, because every guest is issued with their own butler who is on hand 24 hours
a day to attend to their every whim. Overseeing the ironing of the entire contents of your suitcase is a standard request, as is wardrobe advice and personal shopping.
Alvear Palace Hotel, Avenida Alvear 1891, Buenos Aires (00 54 11 4808 2100; www.alvearpalace.com). B&B from $403 (£224) including butler service.
St Regis Resort, USA
In Aspen, the winter playground of the well-to-do, the St Regis offers the services of a "Ski Butler". They will lug equipment to the slopes, advise on the best runs, warm up boots and present guests with a hot cider at the end of the day. There are also the usual services, as well as trademark "Heavenly" beds.
St Regis Resort, 315 East Dean Street, Aspen, USA (001 970 920 3300; www.stregisaspen.com). Doubles from $482 (£270), including ski butler, breakfast and transfers.
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