This Clerkenwell born stalwart ran a Fitzrovia restaurant named after her until she turned 90 but was cruelly ejected by Corus Hotels. Of why they retired her, Salvoni stated: “They said that at my age they can’t get insurance for me. But this is all double-Dutch to me”. Francis Bacon drove her “mad” and though Maria Callas was far from a favourite, she stuck up for Princess Diana and described Cameron Mackintosh as “wonderfully loyal”. With seven decades as maître d’ to the stars behind her, today’s generation of restaurateurs should take note. Gordon Ramsay, for one, could have learnt a thing or two about manners from her.
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