Arriving at its front door in Hill Street, entering the double doors beneath a stucco portico, and flying the Union Flag or the Royal Navy’s White Ensign, we come to the marble hall and the grand staircase with its ornate balustrade and wrought-iron- work. Moving up the ornate staircase to the dining room we find a large and sunlit Louis XVI room where tables are laid with crisp white linen and sil- ver; on the walls hang two paintings of the Battle of Trafalgar by Auguste Ballin. In fine naval tradition, the front desk operates a round- the-clock watch. Members and their guests dine in the superb large dining room, lit by chan- deliers, on good British cook- ing skilfully reinterpreted by a modern chef. Expect an excel- lent English breakfast and a jol- ly good lunch and dinner. Downstairs, the bar is spa- cious, the dark red carpet com- plementing the fine Victorian oak panelling, mouldings and carvings (you may recognise the Naval Club as The Drones Club in the television series Jeeves & Wooster). Nearby is an elegant reading room. The 26 bedrooms, all except two en-suite, have direct-dial telephones with individual voicemail, television, wifi and the facilities to make coffee and tea. There are a few no-frills— and suitably reduced in price— single and double bedrooms when a last-minute stop-over calls for a good night’s sleep in a quiet central location. The original club was found- ed by officers of the RNVR, who bought the premises in 1946. The RNVR was merged with the Royal Naval Reserve in 1958, and in 1969 the Club was renamed the Naval Club. A charity, the Wave Her- itage Trust, was established in 1996 to maintain the building in perpetuity for the public bene- fit. As a non-profit-making or- friends and clients, wine and dine, all without incurring the usual membership fees ganisation, rooted in service to its country and serving officers and men, the Naval Club sets reasonable tariffs for its facili- ties, despite its prestigious loca- tion. In pride of place in the hall is a Roll of Honour con- taining their names, which was unveiled by HRH the Duke of Edinburgh in 2000, and is housed in a cabinet designed and built by Lord Linley. As a private members’ club with a strong military history, the Naval Club operates strict entry rules and codes of dress and behaviour (no mobile phones in the public rooms, for instance, and no jeans). Room rates start at £100 for a small single room at the weekend (£121 midweek) and £133.33 for a Standard Double or Twin for two at the weekend (£166.67 midweek). Executive rooms start at £158.33 at week- ends and £190.83 midweek. Rates include full English breakfast. VAT is excluded. Members may book a stay, a table for lunch or dinner, or a private room at the Naval Club. Please call the Country Clubuk Member Services team on 020 7399 2960. You are most wel- come to invite your guests; you must be responsible for their adherence to the club rules, and be present on each occasion. THE FOX CLUB 46 Clarges Street Off Piccadilly, London W1 In the historic heart of Mayfair is the former London home of Charles James Fox, the great 18th-century Liberal politician and flamboyant leader of the Whig Party. Now this town- house is a comfortable private London club, intimate and dis- creet, with delightful accommo- dation in nine rooms and suites laid out over three floors, plus a charming bar and dining room. CountryClubuk Members are welcome to stay and to use modest, but still featuring the silk wallpapers, polished stone bathrooms and hi-tech gad- getry—are the Executive rooms. Ask us for a room with a Jacuzzi or a balcony. Facilities for business are ex- cellent, as they are for leisure. And everywhere there are exquisite pictures—with one or two eyebrow-raisers—and orig- inal wood panelling, so the feel- ing is of being in the private home of a collector. What is go- ing on here? Everybody knows London clubs are not designed to be comfortable. The conclu- sion, then, must be that this is not a ‘proper’ club. Only up to a point. Although the St James’s Club is not owned by its mem- bers, and since its reopening it has added ‘hotel’ to its name— and been awarded five stars—it retains its club membership (for which it charges a joining fee of £250 and annual membership fee of £450 plus VAT), and it is proud of its distinguished histo- ry as a diplomats’ club. Our Members’ rates start at £245 for two, including English breakfast and free room up- grade if available on arrival (RR £361). Rates exclude VAT. THE NAVAL CLUB 38 Hill Street Off Berkeley Square Mayfair, London W1 The Naval Club comes as a pleasant surprise. It is relaxed yet elegant and stately. Less surprisingly, and in keeping with its history, it is decked out in maritime pictures and mem- orabilia, retaining much of its 18th-century splendour as the former Mayfair home of Earl Chatham, First Lord of the Ad- miralty and brother of the Prime Minister, William Pitt the Younger. Naval tradition and good order maintains un- der the watch of its chief execu- tive, Commander Phillip C Ingham, of the Royal Navy. Enjoy your reciprocal membership of these clubs to the full: Call 020 7399 2960 141