To most, if not all, British comedy fans, there is but one Fawlty Towers. Without question, when one speaks the name, visions of an extraordinarily short-fused hotelier by the name of Basil Fawlty come to mind. While Basil is desperate to join the ranks of the “upper class”, he’s forever at odds with guests and staff alike and his frequent outburst of anger, blatant snobbishness and disdain for “riff-raff”. As the story goes, the idea for the series came from a 1970 stay at the Gleneagles Hotel in Torquay by the Monty Python troupe during filming. The proprietor of the hotel, Donald Sinclair, was described by Cleese as ‘the most marvellously rude man I’ve ever met‘.
Gleneagles may have changed hands and the Wooburn Grange Country Club (where exterior filming for FT was done) may have been destroyed by fire and, ultimately, demolished, but the legend of Fawlty Towers lives on around the world Seems as though there are a number of hotels, motels, bed and breakfasts and hostels that have adopted the name but, hopefully, not the service. Should you be looking to say you’ve stayed at “Fawlty Towers” or if the idea of putting a hand towel in your suitcase with the FT logo on it, here are some that we found (in no apparent order, honest)…
- Fawlty Towers Bed and Breakfast – Great Yarmouth, Norfolk
- Fawlty Towers International Backpackers Lodge – Livingstone, Zambia
- Fawlty Towers Hotel & Hostel – Rome, Italy
- Fawlty Towers Resort Motel – Cocoa Beach, Florida
- Fawlty Towers Hotel – Yangshuo, China
Others we ran across but, sadly, no websites to verify they are still in business are:
- Fawlty Towers Hostel – Fingal, Tazmania
- Faye’s Fawlty Towers Country Lodge – Heathcoate, Central Victoria, Australia
- Fawlty Towers – Umhlanga, South Africa
- Fawlty Towers – Malmaldy/Stavelot reagon of Belgium
- Fawlty Towers Bed & Breakfast – Niagara-on-the-Lake, Ontario, Canada
- Fawlty Towers Hostel/Hotel – Eliat, Israel
- Fawlty Towers Motel – Bunbury, Western Australia
- Fawlty Towers – Sidmouth, Devon
Thought we’d tip our hat to these brave hoteliers who have chosen the internationally famous name of Fawlty Towers, especially considering the reputation of the original establishment as being the worst hotel in the world. Unlike the fictional Hotel California, you can check and you can also leave so….Safe travels.
If anyone has stayed at an FT Hotel around the world and lived to tell about it, please share. Stories and pictures welcome.