Emerging from the gloomily lit underground into Knightsbridge feels a bit like stumbling into a dazzling winter kingdom. Your first steps onto the road are bathed in kaleidoscope of colours – thanks to the stained-glass styling of Harvey Nichol’s festive windows – and take you past a parade of twinkling Christmas trees adorned in metallic baubles. A quick look up reveals the rows of grand buildings that line the road, each pristine facade illuminated in a soft glow. It is there that you’ll spot The Pavilion Club, rubbing shoulders with the prestigious Mandarin Oriental.
The private members’ club is housed in a historic property that dates all the way back to 1884 and you’ll see its storied past echoed from the moment you push open the doors into its plush interiors. Inside, velvet furniture, mosaic tiling and intricate ironmongery exude a sense of welcoming luxury that marries timeless elegance with modern style. This was where I found myself last Monday; escaping the bitter winds outside and instantly being enveloped by a toasty warmth that extended to the friendliness of the staff greeting us at the front desk.
I was there to do a wreath-making workshop, crossing off a typical Christmas duty in a much more stylish fashion than my normal, grab-some-fallen-foliage-and-hope-for-the-best method. Thankfully, we were there ahead of schedule and had a chance to slide into a booth and soak up the ambience.
The setting of The Social Club on the ground floor is irresistibly Instagrammable. A cascade of ivy spills from the mezzanine and a 360-degree hexagonal bar is lined with a rainbow of backlit liquor bottles and rattan stools. It almost feels like you’ve left behind the twinkling Narnia-esque kingdom of Knightsbridge and pushed through the furry coats into the lush jungles of Jumanji – just with stylish glamour and attentive hospitality instead of life-threatening wilderness. Christmas isn’t forgotten either; the venue’s soft lighting glints from traditional gold and red baubles, hanging on a tall, bushy tree that is there to greet you opposite the front doors.
While the ground floor can double as a workplace and social hub (it also features exclusive hot desking for members and a private meeting room), the other levels also bring something unique to the table. Downstairs, The Library invites members to hunker down with secluded booths, boosted super-fast wi-fi and two further meeting rooms. Upstairs, a lush terrace overlooking Hyde Park (on our visit we had a front row seat to the psychedelic lights of Winter Wonderland) is perfect for al-fresco drinking and dining. Four of the floors have also been snapped up by forward-thinking businesses as private offices.
The workshop itself took place in an adjoining room to the terrace. There, we dug into baskets filled with festive foliage as the talented Folklore Florist enlightened us on tricks and techniques for making the perfect wreath. As we got stuck in – taking breathers to sip on delicious mulled wine and munch down mince pies that were being brought round – it was easy to unwind among the soothing shades of green, peach and golden-yellow.
This was just one of many programmed events that The Pavilion Club put on regularly throughout the year. If you choose to become a member, you’ll be treated to a carousel of workshops, wellness classes and live DJ sets that will have you feeling like a true social butterfly – with a strong core and a better sense of mindfulness. For example, on the agenda over the upcoming months there is a Christmas pub quiz (hosted by comedian Jack Whitehall), a yoga class on the terrace, pumping live DJ nights and a crystal healing workshop.
Pavilion already has three luxury buildings across London in Kensington, Cannon Street and St. James. This six-floor Knightsbridge venue opened its doors in July 2021, offering a multi-faceted space in the heart of the city with luxury retail stores, exclusive beauty salons and even antiquities dealers right on the doorstep. Plus, on top of all this, foodies will be delighted to learn that the all-day dining menu is created by Michelin-starred Chef, Tom Kerridge.
As Pavilion Club director Harry Hunt says “With the evolution of remote working and working from home, Pavilion Club will provide people with the perfect space to enjoy from day to night.” If you’ve been looking to mix business with pleasure then this might be the answer. Membership is £150 per month or you could give your boss a nudge and let them know that the private offices start from £2,200.