London - Stylish and exclusive, members club hotels are now sought after around the world. Aoife O’Riordain lists five of the best.
Clubhouse Rio, Rio de Janeiro
With the Olympics in full-swing, all eyes are on Rio. Booking one of the five stylishly done guest rooms in the city's first urban members' club, Clubhouse Rio, ensures visitors a privileged entrée into the happening local scene. The remodelled Tudor-esque townhouse, between Ipanema and the Cantagalo favela, is the backdrop for a bar, restaurant and a lively calendar of events including visiting chefs, art exhibitions and pool parties.
Rua Saint Roman 184, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil (00 55 21 3586 0456; clubhouserio. com). Doubles from $98 (about R1 400) B& B.
The Battery, San Francisco
Guests staying in one of the 14 hotel rooms of The Battery can party with the tech crowd at this five-storey private club opened by the founders of Bebo, Michael and Xochi Birch. Staying here gives you access to the club's bars, a restaurant, a spa, gym with exercise classes like yoga and Pilates, stimulating talks from experts, and art exhibitions. There's also a show stopping rooftop penthouse with views of the Bay Bridge.
717 Battery Street, San Francisco, California (001 415 230 8000; thebatterysf. com). Room-only doubles from $645. 10
Castle Street, Dorset
Bedding down at new members' club 10 Castle Street is more like being welcomed into the house of some very well-connected friends. In this case it's a stunning Grade II-listed country mansion set in its own grounds in the chocolate box surroundings of Cranborne Chase in Dorset. More like wandering in to a welcoming, house party, it has nine guest rooms decked out in elegant country style, which are open to non-members. Dinner showcases the farm-to-table talents of chef Simon Trespess.
10 Castle Street, Cranborne, Wimborne, Dorset (01725 55 11 33; 10castlestreet. com). Doubles from £145, B& B.
Brody House, Budapest
Named in honour of Hungarian writer Sandor Brody, Brody House is on of the city's quirkiest places to check-in. The grand Neoclassical house set in the city's exclusive Palace Quarter is a study in shabby chic and a beguiling assortment of antiques and upcycled vintage furniture which also extends to its 11 guestrooms, all named after artists. Guests get access to the second floor members' club for the duration of their stay for a peek into the city's more bohemian side with literary dinners and cocktail parties as well as art exhibitions and DJ nights at its gallery called The Art Yard.
Vorosmarty utca, 1064 Budapest, Hungary (00 36 1 266 3707; brodyhouse. com). Doubles from € 70, room only.
Soho House Barcelona
The latest Soho House rollout will be its first Iberian outpost, in the sizzling Mediterranean city of Barcelona. The Soho House team of designers have been busy stamping its hallmark style on this 18thcentury building in the heart of the Barrio Gothic for its early autumn opening. Throughout the 57 bedrooms there are lots of decorative nods to Barcelona's artistic heritage, like bathrooms decked out with glistering mosaic tiles. There will also be a bar and two restaurants. Guests and members will no doubt gravitate towards the rooftop pool and bar with views out over Port Vell harbour.
Plaça del Duc de Medinaceli, Barcelona, Spain (00 34 933 428 588; sohohousebarcelona. com). Doubles from € 220, room only.