By Meera Dolasia on November 7, 2014
Though the last book of the spectacular Harry Potter series was released seven years ago in 2007, the young wizard continues to be extremely popular with both kids and adults. Over the years, Potter fans have been able to experience numerous aspects of the young wizard's life, right down to his favorite drink - Butterbeer. Now thanks to a British hotel, they can also spend a night in the wizard's Hogwarts Castle dormitory room.
The four-star Gregorian Hotel in Central London, which recently revealed its two "Wizard Chambers", is ideally suited to reproduce J.K. Rowling's school of wizardry. That's because the hotel, which is still run by the descendants of the original owners, dates all the way back to 1851. And though it has been retrofitted with modern amenities, not much has been done to its external appearance.
According to Serena von der Heyde, partner at the 163-year-old Georgian House, the idea originated as a way to create a kid-friendly environment in a hotel that is well-known for its staid Victoria Classic and Belgravia Boutique rooms.
The "Wizard Chambers" that have been refinished to resemble the Hogwarts dormitory rooms are furnished with everything a wizard fan could dream of - four-poster beds, potion bottles, cauldrons, spell books, and even battered trunks. In order to make them appear even more magical, the hotel owners have added their own special touches that include placing a wand in the hands of the Mona Lisa painting that adorns one of the chambers.
As you may have guessed, these unique accommodations are not cheap. The rooms that include breakfast, cost about $350 USD for two people. The good news is that kids occupying the same room pay only an additional $40 USD each. Given that the bigger "Wizard Chamber" can sleep up to five, the overall cost is palatable for families that are avid Potter fans. Special packages include a "Muggle Walking Tour" that takes fans through areas of the city where parts of the movies were filmed or a visit to Warner Bros. Studios, home of the Harry Potter sets and props.
Not surprisingly, since the news of the availability of these rooms went viral on October 27th, 2014, the hotel's website has crashed several times. Whether it is because fans are curious to see what these rooms look like or because they are trying to book them for their next visit, is unclear. One thing is for sure - the hotel is certainly generating a lot of buzz amongst Potter fans!
1.What kind of accommodations did the Gregorian Hotel recently unveil? Why does the author believe they are the ideal location for the rooms?
2.What are some of the things they have done to make the rooms appear authentic?
3.How much do the rooms cost? What are the options for visitors that want the special packages?