Café Royal

68 Regent Street, London, W1B 5EL

Mandate Lodge met at the Café Royal from 1923 to May 1942 when the Lodge moved to its current meeting place at Freemason's Hall, Great Queen Street, London. In 1942, the Café Royal closed its banqueting facilities, as did many establishments during the Second World War and Mandate Lodge was fortunate to be to be able to be accommodated by the newly build Freemasons Hall.

The Café Royal was originally conceived and set up in 1865 by Daniel Nicholas Thévenon, who was a French wine merchant who had to flee France due to bankruptcy. Arriving in Britain in 1863 with his wife, Célestine, and just five pounds in cash, he changed his name to Daniel Nicols and so began a story that grew out of bankruptcy and culminated in the creation of a supreme reputation for novel atmosphere and pleasure in the centre of London’s West End. However it was under his son, also named Daniel Nicols, that theCafé Royal flourished and was considered at one point to have the greatest wine cellar in the world.

By the 1890s the Café Royal had become the place to see and be seen. Its patrons have included Oscar Wilde, Aleister Crowley, Virginia Woolf, Winston Churchill, Noël Coward, Brigitte Bardot, Sir Max Beerbohm, George Bernard Shaw, Sir Jacob Epstein, Mick Jagger, Elizabeth Taylor, Muhammad Ali and Diana, Princess of Wales. From 1951, it was the home of the National Sporting Club. The Café Royal entered a new era after 1972, when it was bought by David Locke.

The Café Royal closed in December 2008 and the fittings and furniture were sold at auction. The premises have now been redeveloped into a 5 Star luxury hotel designed by David Chipperfield, which opened in December 2012 as Hotel Café Royal. The building is a grade 1 listed building, which will protect its architecturally significant external features and fixtures.

Mandate Chapter used to meet at the Café Royal until Thursday, 29th October 1998 when the Chapter moved to The Royal National Hotel, Bedford Way, London. The Masonic Lodge Rooms at the Café Royal were closed at the end of the 1990's.

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60 Great Queen Street
United Kingdom

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