56th Grand Chapitre, 1-4 October 2015
Our base for our 56th Grand Chapitre in the historic town of Marlow-on-Thames was the stunning Danesfield Hotel sited high above the river amidst 65 acres of gardens with outstanding views of the valley and the Chiltern Hills. General Manager, Maître Hôtelier Anthony Cox and his team, including the kitchen crew lead by Exec Chef Billy Reid, made us most welcome.
Our weekend started on the Thursday with a visit to Windsor Castle and, that evening, a Dîner Amical in the world famous Cliveden House, previously home of the Astor family, and now in the ownership of The National Trust. Next morning there was a visit to Waddesdon Manor, home of Baron Eric de Rothschild and again now cared for by the National Trust. Our Welcome Dinner that evening took place in the Versailles Room of the Danesfield Hotel.
As is now our custom, the induction of new members and promotees took place on Saturday morning to allow the maximum participation by our professionals. This year we were especially privileged to be able to hold the Induction in nearby Henley Town Hall. Our Inducting Officer was Ari Arvonen, Bailli Délégué de Finlande and Membre du Conseil Magistral
Saturday afternoon saw the opportunity to take a gentle river cruise together with tea aboard Hibernia. Then in the evening our Gala Dinner was held in the spectacular Stoke Park Club in Stoke Poges surrounded by hundreds of acres of parkland. On Sunday, our farewell lunch was enjoyed in the famous foodie village of Bray at Heston Blumenthal’s Michelin-starred Hinds Head.
The teams at all our venues planned great menus reflecting both the location and time of year. It was a weekend to remember of cultural interest, culinary and vinious excellence and, most of all, great camaraderie.