The World of Exclusive Privileges
By : | October 9, 2018

As private members’ clubs in India go, Bangalore’s BLVD is perhaps the most exclusive of them all.

Popular across North America and Europe and, increasingly, Asia, the super-decadent world of private members’ clubs is inspired by the quintessential British gentlemen’s clubs of yore, an elegant, esoteric club of power players. Private social clubs were first set up by British aristocratic men in the 18th century, and soon after, their charm wooed the world.

Netflix’s popular show The Crown, which brought to life the secretive world of British royalty, featured a version or two of such clubs, frequented and? even founded by Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh, back then. A flock of elite clubs for the highly privileged across major cities has pretty much been a norm since then.


In India, Mumbai has some and Delhi has a few. BLVD is Bengaluru’s first private club. The city is a perfect base for a private members’ clubs. It is home to several high-level executives, many of them expats from across the world, who work in their IT and services industry.  

BLVD, within the gated Embassy Boulevard’s luxury enclave, has expansive views of the open spaces that the airport area is known for, and is designed to maximise luxury experiences while offering a sanctuary and a getaway for the privileged few.

BLVD, from real estate behemoth Embassy Group, opened in December last year and has since garnered several members. My two days stay at the club, which also has a luxurious residential space, was a serene getaway. The residences within the club, the bar and the dining space, all revolve around the swimming pool.  


Emanda Vaz, Head of Marketing, Hospitality and Clubs Embassy Group, over a sumptuous breakfast, told me, “It is really the first private club in Bangalore and the first one in a residential project in India. Our members include High Networth Individuals — sportspeople, people from the film industry, corporates, entrepreneurs…The people who buy homes in Embassy Boulevard get an automatic membership.”

The location is perfect — it lies within the gold triangle of the airport, Embassy Stonehill International School and the CBD — which is where a lot of discrete luxury properties are coming up. Sprawled over 1,00,000 sq. ft., my evenings were spent walking through its tree-lined avenues and sipping coffee on the open porch, next to the restaurant, looking out at the frangipani trees skirting the pool.

The BLVD Club has a community of what Vaz calls “like-minded and forward-thinking people. They share a lot in common, including their lifestyle.” BLVD has several exclusive facilities that the members can use — a striking bar with beautiful space dividers; private dining nooks with lotus ponds; a well-equipped gymnasium; sports amenities such as squash, tennis and badminton courts; not to forget, a beautiful spa with a host of interesting massages, from facials to body massages.

One of BLVD’s best offerings is their restaurant, Core, which is headline by Embassy Group’s Corporate Chef, Vikas Seth. Known for his experimental streak, Chef Seth and his team serves up some delicious meals at the restaurant, particularly a very scrumptious Jackfruit Biryani, a southern India’s culinary classic. “The menu has been developed keeping diverse palates in mind and it constantly keeps on changing,” he tells me over a beautiful High Tea with lovely scones and lovely pies. “We also experiment quite a bit. One of our experimentations have been the gulab jamun ice-cream and even a gajar ka halwa infused ice-cream, besides a Rasmalai crème brulee.” Among my rank favorites here is an interesting beetroot tikki and the non-fried dahi bhalla.


Among the rare privileges available to the members is a membership of Quintessentially, a global concierge which opens the gate to several exclusive experiences, and access to Embassy International Riding School.

The membership to BLVD is by invitation only, as in private members’ clubs across the world. Getting into these clubs is like jostling for a much-desired invitation to that hottest party in town. Either you are lucky enough to be invited, or you are introduced by someone far ahead in the pecking order.


Such elite clubs can now be mapped across the world. In London, there is Brooks’ (, among the oldest in the world, established in 1762 as a private society. Today it is housed in a grand yellow-brick and Portland stone building, it imitates the Palladian style of early Dutch country houses, and offers its members access to a bar, dining room, library, and several gaming rooms. Among its alumni is former Prime Minister William Pitt the Younger, and slave trade abolitionist leader William Wilberforce. The main suite of rooms comprises the Great Subscription Room, Small Drawing Room, and the Card Room. 

The US is another haven for private members’ club, and among its elegant clubs is The Yale Club of New York City (, which boasts of a 120-year-old journey, opening its doors in 1915, at 17 Madison Square. The Club now sits on Vanderbilt Avenue, in the heart of midtown, and is just steps away from the Grand Central Station. Hailed for its refined neoclassical approach, it was designed by James Gamble Rogers.



Deepali Nandwani, former Editor in chief, Mediascope - NewBase Content, has spent 25 years in the world of journalism, and keenly tracks the global luxury industry.