January 31, 2006 at 10:43 pm #1602VEST ParadoxParticipant
This club was established in 1823 by John Wilson Croker, Sir Thomas Lawrence, and others for individuals known for scientific, literary or artistic accomplishments as well as patrons of these endeavors. The club library was thought to be one of the best in London. A classical revival building, it has a front portico with paired Doric columns, a continuous balustrade on the main floor (piano nobile), a frieze above that floor copied from the Parthenon, and a statue of Pallas Athene by Baily above the porch. (The third story was added later when Lord Asher Sterling purchased the place from the ailing and dying Croker.)
The Athenaeum is a Coffee House, one of the many that are sprining up across London and other larger cities in the last 50 years. A place where like minded people of means can get together and enjoy each others company, discuss politics, or conduct business. Though generally open only to Protestant Males. The Athenaeum has created no small amount of disagreement lateley since it's change in ownership, mainly due to the fact that Lord Sterling has decided to allow memberships and patronage to Women and Foreign Minorities. Exactly what he has to gain from this outlandish behavior remains to be seen.
The Athenaeum located on the corner of Pall Mall and Waterloo Place, located about two blocks west of Trafalgar Square.
The interior is mostly a creme marble, to give the feeling that you are in an ancient Roman building, though rich redwood and mahogany woods can be seen all over in the trim, and making up the counters, tables, and chairs. Rich Crimson Velvet is used as the upholstery, and several matching tapestries can be seen hanging from the walls with the crest of the Athenaeum as well as House Sterling upon them emblazoned in Silver. The Floor is a checkerboard pattern of black and cream marble, and most of the fixtures and accessories are in Sterling Silver.
Below is the floorplan, the second floor Members location is gated off to prevent non members from ascending there, it's also guarded by one of the staff members. The Second floor member area is open and look down upon the open first floor, below it is the storage room and kitchens where the drinks are made and food is prepared.
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