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15th November 2017

Absolutely Fabulous is a television sitcom by the BBC that has become an icon of British culture. Bringing out the best of British humour and depicting a version of high-flying London lifestyles, ‘Ab Fab’ follows magazine fashion director Patsy Stone (Joanna Lumley) and her best friend Edina Monsoon (Jennifer Saunders), a PR agent on a constant mission to remain young and hip.

The series first aired in 1992 and ran for a few seasons, although there have been plenty of one-off episodes with guest appearances from high profile celebrities including Stephen Fry, Twiggy and Kate Moss.

Patsy and Edina’s far from angelic behaviour has seen them rove the streets of London – and destinations across the world – in search of high-end alcohol (they affectionately refer to Bollinger champagne as ‘Bolly’) and glamorous adventures.

In 1994, a photoshoot took place in New York City to promote the Absolutely Fabulous programme. Joanna Lumley is pictured in character, swigging from a bottle of Stolichnaya vodka, with the city laid out behind her. Capturing a slice of 1990s style and glamour, the photograph captures a delightful moment of quirky British culture.

The Athenaeum is a family-run hotel, and this photograph was donated to our restaurant salon area by the owners. Providing the perfect backdrop to our afternoon teas in particular, be sure to order a glass of ‘Bolly’ next time you’re in, and raise a glass to Patsy. We’re sure she would approve.

This Boxing Day, make sure you tune into a festive Absolutely Fabulous special that is due to be aired. The programme will see Patsy and Edina travel to France and visit the Bollinger vineyards to find out more about their favourite tipple. We’re sure they indulged in a few glasses while they were there too…

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