So, goodbye to Elizabeth Taylor, star, legend and international globetrotter. Not only was Liz famous for her fashion, her jewels and her huge number of husbands, but she was also one of the original jet set, back in the day when travelling the world was just so much more glamorous than it is now.
Taylor during her honeymoon with Nicky Hilton in 1950
Born in London, she moved to Los Angeles with her American parents when she was 7, where she was signed up as a child star by Universal. Aged 17 she married Hotel heir Nicky Hilton (Paris Hilton’s great granddad!) at the historic Carmel Country Club in Northern California (www.carmelcountryclub.org), where Hilton allegedly spent their wedding night propping up the bar.
Taylor and Burton on holiday in 1962
But Liz was always drawn to Europe. She lived a gypsy kind of lifestyle with husband number 5 (and 6) Richard Burton, (Burton described them as 'doomed nomads') as tax exiles in Gstaad, Switzerland, where she’d often lunch at the Gstaad Palace Hotel swathed in a huge fur coat (www.palace.ch). Newly refurbished, the hotel has recently opened again.
Another of Burton and Taylor’s European haunts has also just been given a make over - the iconic Sveti Stefan on its own private island in Montenegro is due to open its doors once more in May after having a multi-million refit by the super luxurious Aman Group (www.amanresorts.com).
Taylor arriving at the Dorchester Hotel with Burton in 1975
Liz loved coming back to her place of birth and when in London often resided at the iconic Dorchester Hotel (www.thedorchester.com). Allegedly one suite in the hotel still has an original pink marble bathroom with the initials ‘RB xxx ET’ carved on it during one of their stays there by the mischievous and head-over heels-in-love Burton. Ask if you can check it out next time you’re there...
- Nic Kynaston