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“Exclusively… Cliveden” The ETV team explores this historic venue. 

There’s nothing quite so satisfying as poking around downstairs, is there? Steady on, I know the house is renowned for its shenanigans of a saucy nature, but I’m not talking about a fumble in the rosebushes – I mean a good old nose-about through someone’s sitting room, admiring their soft furnishings.

 It was on one such wander at heavenly Cliveden that I came across one of the house’s hidden treasures. Careful readers will be racing ahead of me and imagine that I came across Christine Keeler’s discarded swimwear, or possibly one of Sir Winston Churchill’s still-smouldering cigars. But no: this little find was probably the secret of Viscount and Viscountess Astor’s happy marriage. 

Her Ladyship famously disapproved of gentlemen overindulging in intoxicating liquor, probably due to her American upbringing. But her husband, Waldorf, was obviously a wily character, and if you ask the butler very nicely he’ll show you a hidden drinks cabinet, tucked away behind an unobtrusive piece of panelling, where Lord Astor would nip off for a cheeky snifter or two during tiresome dinner parties. 

Cliveden is full of delicious discoveries like this, and the wonderfully friendly staff will enjoy showing off the many wonders of this jewel of the Thames Valley.

Bourne End Rd, Taplow SL6 0JF

Fast Facts:

  • 5 star deluxe hotel
  • 47 bedrooms
  • Spring Cottage retreat
  • 4 dining rooms
  • Screening room