You are warmly invited to attend our exclusive CountryClubuk Platinum Jubilee Evening aboard Her Majesty The Queen’s former Royal Yacht Britannia. This will be a glittering private evening of Champagne, fine wining and dining in the State Rooms of the Royal Yacht, walking in the footsteps of HM The Queen and HRH The Duke of Edinburgh.
The arrangements and atmosphere will be no different to when the Royal Family were aboard Britannia on State duty, welcoming Royalty, Prime Ministers and Presidents from across the world.
The date is Wednesday, June 1, 2022, the eve of the Jubilee Celebrations. We shall be the only guests on board Britannia for this exclusive private evening, and this glamorous, historic and memorable private event will be a perfect addition to our 2022 Platinum Jubilee festivities.
Having first received our personalised invitations, adorned by Her Majesty’s Royal Yacht Britannia coat of arms, the evening will begin as it did for Her Majesty and her guests, when we are welcomed aboard the yacht via a private entrance to the strains of a Scottish piper in full regalia, along the regal red carpet. We shall board Britannia by the Royal entrance, the Royal Brow, on the port aft of the yacht.
We shall see for ourselves on this special evening why Britannia is the Royal Palace which Her Majesty holds most dear. The Queen said of her, ‘Britannia is the one place where I can truly relax.’
Britannia is part of a centuries-old tradition of British Royal Yachts, dating back to 1660 and the reign of King Charles II. In fact the original meaning of the word Yacht is ‘a vessel of state used to convey princes from one kingdom to another’. Although plans for Britannia had been conceived in 1952, during the reign of King George VI, the then Princess Elizabeth’s father—partly to help him to continue overseas tours while recuperating from ailing health. Sadly, the King died only two days later.
Not only did The Queen have to prepare for her new role, but she it was who had responsibility for commissioning and helping to design the new three-masted Royal Yacht, not only as a ship of state but for conversion into a hospital ship in wartime. Naming Britannia at her launch in 1953 will have been a poignant moment for The Queen. And who can forget the sadness of the day in 1997 when Britannia was decommissioned? As the Band of HM Royal Marines played the highly emotive ‘Highland Cathedral’, HM The Queen was seen to shed a tear of sadness.
The Queen said then, ‘Looking back over 44 years we can all reflect with pride and gratitude upon this great ship which has served the country, the Royal Navy and my family with such distinction . . . playing such an important role in the history of the second half of this century. Steaming over one million miles she has proudly carried out over 700 Royal visits at home and overseas. Her achievements are a great testament to those who designed and built her and to those craftsmen and artisans who have maintained her with such dedication over all these years.’
We much hope our Members and their guests will join us for this special, exceptional private Platinum Jubilee event, and relax amid the splendours of The Queen’s floating palace to fully enjoy both the occasion and the historical significance of the Jubilee and the Royal Yacht Britannia.
Despite retirement from Royal duties, entertaining on board the Royal Yacht at her berth in Edinburgh’s Port of Leith is no different today than when she was on State duty across the world, a regal stage for HM The Queen to meet overseas Royalty, Heads of State and international business leaders, all honoured to be aboard her. The same meticulous attention to detail is observed today, and the same high standards of service are rigorously followed. In addition, the dishes prepared by Britannia’s Executive Chef and his team in the Royal Galley are superb. Our guests may be forgiven for themselves feeling like Royalty!
Having arrived on board the Royal Yacht, we shall be welcomed by the white-coated stewards and escorted to the State Drawing Room for our Champagne Reception. This is where The Queen met her guests. Its décor, antique and modern—’a country house at sea’ as its designer Sir Hugh Casson explained—has not changed, even down to the original Walmar baby grand piano, firmly bolted to the floor in case of rough seas, and often played by guests including Sir Noel Coward, and by Princesses Margaret and Diana. For us, a professional pianist will play. The State Drawing Room is also where the Royal Family relaxed together, their favourite pastimes including playing games, reading and singing.
During the reception we shall be invited to take private tours of Britannia, hosted by experienced senior guides whose knowledge of the yacht and her historic past are deep and informative, as well as entertaining—telling anecdotes such as how HM the Queen Mother used to frequent the mess bar to drink her favourite gin and Dubonnet, then cook bacon and eggs for the crew. More sober facts include Britannia’s length at 412ft, without rivets or name, and her crew complement of 220 Royal Yachtsmen, 21 officers, an admiral and a 26-strong Royal Marine band. On a tour taking in the bridge and the engine room, we shall visit private areas such as Her Majesty’s sleeping quarters, decorated to utilise bed linen bought for Queen Victoria on the previous Royal Yacht.
For a State Visit, The Queen would take five tons of luggage, including royal jewellery and Malvern water for her tea. Up to 45 members of the royal household would accompany her, including her surgeon, detectives, hairdresser, valets, footmen, ladies-in-waiting, press, private secretaries and chefs. As we tour the yacht we shall see that all the clocks are stopped at 15:01, the time when The Queen was piped ashore for the last time. All this and much more will be ours to understand and explore, revealing little known aspects of both Royal and maritime history in the process.
Following our private Champagne Reception and tours of Britannia, eventually we shall be invited to take our places in the magnificent State Dining Room for our Banquet. As when HM The Queen entertained, the position of every knife, fork and spoon will have been measured meticulously with a ruler. This will have taken several hours to achieve, and the whole effect of arriving in this State Room is breathtaking. The finest crystal, gleaming cutlery, fresh flowers, candelabra and personalised menus embossed with Britannia’s unmistakable gold crest will be the backdrop to our event, just as they were in times past.
So too, the service: white-coated stewards preside, simultaneously uplifting the silver domes from our plates as they did for The Queen and her guests. In such a grand setting, this alone is a spectacle to behold. And all the while a harp, flute and cello trio will play, their theme being music which Her Majesty and the Duke most enjoyed when entertaining onboard guests, some of the most memorable of whom were Sir Winston Churchill, Ronald and Nancy Reagan, Nelson Mandela and Ghandi.
We shall dine on four courses from an exclusive menu created for us by Britannia’s Executive Chef, Mark Alston, a menu of classical British cuisine, using local Scottish ingredients wherever possible. It is a little early to know the exact menu, but we can be sure that the Chef will be using the best of seasonal and local produce for our banquet—such delicious highlights will likely include the best Scottish salmon, scallops and crab as well as dry aged Scottish fillet of beef with all the trimmings, and a new pudding created by the Chef in honour of The Queen’s Platinum Jubilee will be served. Dinner will be accompanied by wine, selected to perfectly complement the menu by the Royal Yacht Sommelier. It will be followed by coffee or teas and petits fours—all handmade aboard Britannia, as are the breads and patisserie.
When our banquet comes to a close we are invited to remain on board Britannia until midnight if we wish, enjoying our time in the State Dining Room or moving back to the State Drawing Room. Stewards will be at hand to assist in our enjoying the Royal Yacht still further—the aim is to make the very most of our private time on board this special Royal vessel at this momentous moment in the nation’s Royal history. An evening on board HM The Queen’s Royal Yacht Britannia in the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee year is an evening that will never be forgotten, and we hope will never end.
RESERVE YOUR PLACES FOR THE EXCLUSIVE COUNTRYCLUBUK PRIVATE EVENING ON THE ROYAL YACHT BRITANNIA, WEDNESDAY, JUNE 1, 2022, TO CELEBRATE HM THE QUEEN’S PLATINUM JUBILEE
Tickets for the entire private event on the Royal Yacht Britannia are just £249 per head. The date is Wednesday, June 1, 2022, making a fabulous highlight to HM The Queen’s Platinum Jubilee festivities.
This event is open only to CountryClubuk Members and their personal guests, and includes private tours of the Royal Yacht Britannia, a Champagne and Canapé Reception in the State Drawing Room, a four-course Candlelit Banquet in the State Dining Room, served with half a bottle of wine per guest, live music in the State Drawing Room and in the State Dining Room, service and VAT. We shall be piped aboard at 7pm and we shall dine at 8.15pm. Carriages from 11pm to midnight.
Places are of necessity strictly limited, and we anticipate that this exclusive event will be extremely popular with our Members, so please don’t delay!
Please click here to reserve your places now, or call us on 020 7399 2960, so that your name and those of your personal guests can be added to the Guest List for our exclusive Platinum Jubilee Banquet on the HMY The Royal Yacht Britannia.
EXTEND THE PLEASURE: STAY A NIGHT OR MORE ABOARD THE ROYAL YACHT BRITANNIA’S FIVE-STAR FLOATING HOTEL, FINGAL—OR TAKE A SHORT BREAK IN EDINBURGH
When our private evening on board the Royal Yacht Britannia comes to a close, we can extend the pleasure with a night or more’s stay on board Fingal, the five-star luxury floating hotel berthed just along the waterfront from Britannia. Fingal is a glamorous and unique experience in her own right. Previously known as the Windsor Castle, she has her own illustrious and Royal history, including hosting HM The Queen, HRH Prince Philip and HRH Princess Anne, who have often stayed the night aboard Fingal.
The ship is a former service vessel for the Northern Lighthouse Board, of which the Princess is patron. So it was a fitting tribute for The Queen to host a birthday party for the Princess aboard Fingal—much to the delight of other guests. More than £5 million has been spent to turn Fingal from a working vessel into one of the world’s most luxurious floating hotels—winning accolades from all who stay aboard her. An hotel with all the glamour and style of a superyacht, she has an old-world elegance that is unique.
Fingal’s cabins are the epitome of comfort—some of them fit for The Queen in fact! The beds are from the manufacturers which make beds for the Royal Family, so sleeping on Fingal’s mattresses is like floating on clouds. Each room is fitted with a smart TV, underfloor heating and air conditioning, and some have access to the deck.
To stay on Fingal for one, two or three nights, or to stay in Edinburgh at one of our reciprocal clubs and recommended hotels at exclusive Club Members’ rates, please call Member Services on 020 7399 2960.
Please click here to reserve your places for this event now, or call us on 020 7399 2960, so that your name and those of your personal guests can be added to the Guest List for our exclusive Platinum Jubilee Banquet on the HMY The Royal Yacht Britannia.