Les Ambassadeurs, the famed Mayfair casino featured in the Beatles’ A Hard Day’s Night and the Bond film Dr. No, has been put up for sale.
The building’s owner, the Crown Estate, hopes to raise £50 million by selling the freehold of the casino, which overlooks Hyde Park and charges up to £25,000 a year for membership.
The Crown Estate, which owns parts of pricey Regent Street and St James’s, has owned the freehold since the 1500s. It stands on the site of one of Henry VIII’s hunting lodges.
The Grade II-listed building housing Les Ambassadeurs dates back to the early 19th century, and was once home to the Rothschilds.
The current casino was opened at Hanover Square in 1941 by businessman John Mills and relocated to Hamilton Place, off Park Lane, in 1950. Mills ran the casino until 1981, when the leasehold was bought by London Clubs International. In 2006, the lease was sold to the Sampoerna family.