I have a strong affinity to Cliveden House in Taplow, Berkshire. Growing up just down the road, I’ve been lucky enough to visit a few times now, with the highlight most definitely being a trip with Aston Martin and driving towards the palatial frontage of this fine house in the brand new DB11 car. Grandeur aside though, Cliveden is one of those few gems in the UK that actually feels like a home away from home. Forget the National Trust membership or slightly imposing structure; head on inside whenever you want and grab a coffee. Seriously.
One common misconception of Cliveden is that you need to have a date in the diary, be staying in one of the rooms or, failing all that, be a Lord or Lady with lineage that is somewhat intertwined with Lady Astor who resided here many years ago. Instead, Cliveden is actually an incredibly photogenic location with good coffee, great food and (very importantly) consistent and speedy wifi. All within the confines of a spectacular private home that provides an unbelievable number of photo opportunities.
Door-to-door (providing you drive, that is) you can leave London and be walking into the incredibly cosy Cliveden sitting room within the hour. It is the perfect office outside of London; service is discreet enough to not be overbearing, but the staff are there for your every need. Non-guests are treated as well as guests and it is a great, quiet place to get your head down and crack on with some work. Admittedly a little more difficult when your dog is dressed in a gift shop sweater and posing for photos.
If you’re looking for an alternative place to commute to each morning and want to forego any hefty membership fees or busy locations, then I highly recommend taking a trip to the house on the edge of the Thames. Even more so now their envy-inducing Christmas decorations are going up…