My Oxford: Michael Grange
After working as banqueting manager at Brown’s Hotel in London, Michael held the position of general manager at seven different hotels. Michael has managed the Randolph since 2006 and says that he enjoys “seeing other countries, meeting different people and learning about different cultures”.
Can you tell us a bit about your relationship with Oxford?
I have been working as the General Manager for the Macdonald Randolph Hotel for over 10 years now and absolutely love the city of Oxford. The history of the property (and indeed the city) was a big factor in my decision to take up the role and I have been very lucky to be a part of such an Oxford institution.
When and why did you move here?
I moved in 2005 into the position after being General Manager for the Macdonald Bath Spa Hotel for over 8 years. Oxford is my favourite, with its equally splendid architecture. My sister Caroline, who is a doctor at the John Radcliffe, has lived in Oxford for many years so I have always enjoyed visiting.
What to you are the most iconic aspects of Oxford?
Apart from The Randolph, I must say the various colleges and the hustle and bustle of the city with students in their hats and gowns really cements the city as a leading educational hub.
What are your favourite haunts around the city?
I do enjoy history and having the world famous Ashmolean Museum on the doorstep of the hotel is at absolute pleasure. I regularly pop over to see their exhibitions and to view their vast collections. The refurbishment and re-opening was a great addition to the city. Also a great aspect of Oxford is the proximity to the river and I enjoy walking along these stretches regularly.
Where do you eat and drink?
Oxford has some of the finest pubs in the country and we are a lucky city. The Eagle & Child is a great place to go with colleagues and friends and I also frequent the Lamb & Flag. At the hotel we offer our famous Morse Bar for cocktails and our afternoon tea seven days a week. This is a great place to unwind after a busy day sightseeing in Oxford. I do enjoy eating out and Brasserie Blanc is one of my favourites. I am also quite a big fan of Mission Burrito for a quick bite during a busy week at the hotel.
What about Oxford has inspired you or helped your creative process?
Oxford is such an international city which I think is very inspiring. I have been lucky to meet many world leaders in my capacity at the hotel and we endeavour to offer our guests all the home comforts of their countries and ensure they are relaxed during their time with us. We have a ‘Wall of Fame’ at the hotel with many of our famous guests and patrons. I really enjoy travelling and firmly believe that Oxford is one of the best cities to visit in the world.
What’s the worst or least attractive thing about Oxford?
The congestion in the city is very difficult but hopefully, with the new developments in infrastructure and road alterations, this will get much better.
Do you have an area, street or village in Oxfordshire that is special to you?
I really enjoy the Covered Market. The Cake Shop is always a must for any celebration cake and they have always provided us at the hotel when we have needed something special. There is also some wonderful butchers which have a huge range on offer.
Related Article: My Oxford: Harry Sidebottom