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Streaming video

Title Ritz / Director: Garbely, Frank
Published Australia : SBS ONE, 2008
Online access available from:
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Description 1 streaming video file (52 min. 47 sec.) ; 318645566 bytes
Summary Ritz tells of the legendary rise and the subsequent fall of Swiss farmer boy Cesar Ritz, the most sought-after hotel manager of his time.Born in 1850, the youngest of fifteen children, Cesar Ritz always stood out as the most creative child in his family. Moving to Paris when he was 17, Ritz worked in a variety of occupations; shoe polisher, errand boy and even a doorman in a brothel. Eventually he was hired as a waiter at one of the finest restaurants in Paris, where he rose quickly to a manager position. In 1877 Ritz finally got the position of his dreams - Manager of the Grand Hotel in Monte Carlo. His success was immediate and by the end of his first year, turnover had doubled. But disaster struck when an outbreak of Cholera saw panicking guests desert the Riviera. After the epidemic, Ritz implemented strict hygiene guidelines which all the best hotels later emulated. He was the first hotelier to fit each room with its own toilet and bathroom, a revolution at a time when most houses did not even have running water. When Ritz recruited chef August Escoffier in 1880, it was the beginning of an important business relationship. Modern French cuisine owes everything to Escoffier and to this day, the kitchens of the best restaurants are set up and organised following the rules set up by him. Their incredible collaboration attracted the attention of a very important client, Edward Prince of Wales, heir to the thrown of England. The Prince became Ritz's most loyal customer, and he brought other important clientele. Following the death of Queen Victoria in 1901, Ritz was put in charge of the unofficial side of the festivities for the Coronation of his old friend Prince Edward. But when the carefully planned ceremonies were postponed because the King was suffering from appendicitis, Ritz had a nervous breakdown from which he never fully recovered. By 1914 had lost all grasp on reality and after sixteen years of illness, Ritz died on October 26, 1918. Today, the owners of Ritz hotels are working hard to keep his tradition alive, ensuring Cesar Ritz will never be forgotten. (From France, in French, Swiss German, English, in English subtitles) (Documentary)
Event Broadcast 2010-01-01 at 15:00:00
Notes Classification: PG
Subject Hotels -- Design.
Hotels -- Economic aspects.
Hotels -- Food service.
Ritz Hotel (Paris, France)
Ritz, Ce?sar, 1850-1918.
France -- Paris.
Form Streaming video
Author Garbely, Frank, director
Sanzone, Domenico, cast