Stoke Park Club, England

PUBLISHED : Sunday, 19 April, 2009, 12:00am
UPDATED : Sunday, 19 April, 2009, 12:00am

Where is it? Sprawling over 141 hectares that include a 27-hole champion parkland golf course, Stoke Park Club is just over 30 minutes' drive from central London.

What is so special about this country club? The estate it stands on is steeped in history. In 1760 - long before it was a location for the James Bond movie Goldfinger - it became home to Thomas Penn, son of William Penn, the founder of Pennsylvania in the United States. About three decades later, the Palladian-style mansion was built. Stoke Park Club was founded in 1908 and today, other than being a members' club, it is a hotel and conference venue boasting 49 luxury bedrooms and suites, a gymnasium, a health and beauty spa and salon, 13 tennis courts and the golf course, which opened in 1908.

Do the hotel rooms have a BBC period-drama feel? The 21 bedrooms and suites in the mansion certainly have a historical feel. The rooms have been decorated to accentuate their classical architectural beauty and grandeur. Some of the paintings have been on the walls since the Penn era. The rest of the accommodation is in the Pavilion, which opened last year. This part of the club also houses the gym and swimming pool. The choice of artwork, which includes 1960s and 70s retro art, may be kitschy but it does give the place a distinct style.

Anything else? The club offers a wide range of packages for corporate and private groups, including shooting and a Bridget Jones mini-break (scenes from Bridget Jones' Diary were shot here in 2000).

Stoke Park Club is on Park Road, Stoke Poges, Buckinghamshire, England;