• The Secret Life of the Savoy

  • And the D’Oyly Carte Family
  • By: Olivia Williams
  • Narrated by: Sophie Roberts
  • Length: 9 hrs and 34 mins
  • 3.8 out of 5 stars (17 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

The captivating story of the famed Savoy Hotel’s founders, told through three generations - and 100 years - of glamour and high society.

For the gondoliers-themed birthday dinner, the hotel obligingly flooded the courtyard to conjure the Grand Canal of Venice. Dinner was served on a silk-lined floating gondola, real swans were swimming in the water, and, as a final flourish, a baby elephant borrowed from the London Zoo pulled a five-foot-high birthday cake.

In three generations, the D’Oyly Carte family and London’s Savoy Hotel pioneered the idea of the luxury hotel and the modern theater, propelled Gilbert and Sullivan to lasting stardom, made Oscar Wilde a transatlantic celebrity, inspired a P. G. Wodehouse series, and popularized early jazz, electric lights, and Art Deco.

Following the history of the iconic Savoy Hotel through three generations of the D’Oyly Carte family, The Secret Life of the Savoy brings to life the extraordinary cultural legacy of the most famous hotel in the world.

©2020 by Olivia Williams (P)2021 by Headline Publishing Group Limited

What listeners say about The Secret Life of the Savoy

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Outstanding

Thank you Great book so enjoyed it So well researched .. Great great read/ listen

2 people found this helpful

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Very little secret life of the Savoy

Too much nonsense about the theater or opera. Inconsistently about the hotels. Quite a boring story, even if one fast forwards through the dull parts.

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  • paul
  • 05-06-22

Fascinating family

I had imagined that this book would be filled with anecdotes about the peccadilloes of those who passed t hough the doors of this wonderful hotel. It was however focused on the Doyley Carte family and their history. Equally as interesting and good to get an insight into a family whose businesses set the bar very high in every venture on which they embarked.

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  • Anonymous User
  • 03-15-22

Fascinating

For anyone who has worked in theatre or hospitality or both as I have. Riveting stuff.

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  • Anonymous User
  • 03-08-22

Fascinating.

This book had me hook, line and sinker in the opening paragraphs as it is an endlessly intriguing tale of wealth that is full of depth as well as plenty of history that is told with great panache and spoken with a cultivated voice of culture that comes highly recommended as it is a terrific read that I couldn’t put down. 👍🏼👍🏼 #fivestars

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  • Kindle Customer
  • 01-27-22

Interesting

Amazed to hear all the well known celebrities of the time linked with this story.

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  • Anonymous User
  • 01-13-22

Very interesting life of Savoy and its creators.

I loved the insight of English history made by an insightful, creative daring to be different man and his family who continued through decades with the same integrity.

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  • neety
  • 01-12-22

Insightful, intriguing and interesting

Wow a great listen. What a huge amount of research by Olivia Williams (I’m assuming). A legacy to a bygone era and peoples. A shame no descendants could have carried it on. And a shame about big business and greed in the current world. Post Covid maybe we can all slow down and appreciate.
Ps. Maybe listen to chapter by chapter. I’m sure I didn’t take it all in….

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  • Paul H Bowers
  • 01-08-22

Old world elegance

A entertaining listen of the life of the Savoy, and Claridges, from the very first idea of establishing decent accommodation in old London town.
A history of its best days and old world charm, littered with movie stars, and the famous, until the passing of the last family member.

Well worth your time.

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  • Jennifer Wilkinson
  • 01-02-22

The Savoy

An interesting history, especially the early days and the scandals.
The narrator was clear but very mechanical.

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  • Jennifer
  • 12-14-21

Fascinating Tale of an iconic legacy

Life so often is stranger than fiction. What determination and drive! It would have been amazing to experience in its heyday.

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