National Trust: Cliveden @ Taplow, Buckinghamshire



1893年にアメリカの大富豪・William Waldorf Astor子爵が購入し、その後、息子のWaldorfとその妻でイギリス最初の女性議員となったNancy Astorに邸宅が譲られてから、クリーヴデンの名が飛躍的に高まった。ナンシーは、チャーリー・チャップリン、ウィンストン・チャーチル首相、セオドア・ルーズベルト米大統領、ジョージ・バーナード・ショーなど、著名な俳優やセレブリティ、政治家、アーティストたちをもてなした。クリーヴデンはまた、「Cliveden set」と呼ばれる、1920〜30年代に政治に多大な影響力を持った上流階級の知識人のミーティング場所でもあった。しかし、クリーヴデンの名を世に知らしめたのは、1960年代に起きた「20世紀最大の英政界スキャンダル」、プロヒューモ事件だった。当時陸軍大臣であったジョン・プロヒューモが、モデルで売春婦だった21歳のクリスティーン・キーラーと出会ったのが、クリーヴデンで催されたプールパーティだったのだ。

1970年代はカリフォルニアにあるスタンフォード大学の海外キャンパスとして使われたが、現在はNational Trustの所有になっており、屋敷は5つ星ホテル「Cliveden House」にリースされている。


Cliveden is an Italianate mansion and 375-acre estate in TaplowBuckinghamshire. Built in 1666 for George Villiers, 2nd Duke of Buckingham, the site has been home to an Earl, three Countesses, two Dukes, a Prince of Wales and the Viscounts Astor (history / Cliveden House Hotel website).

The fame of Cliveden went up since it was purchased by the America’s richest man William Waldorf Astor in 1893 and was given to his son Waldorf Astor, 2nd Viscount Astor and his wife Nancy Astor, who was the first female MP. Here, Nancy hosted actors and celebrities, politicians and artists, including Charlie Chaplin, Winston Churchill, Teddy Roosevelt and George Bernard Shaw. The house was also used as the meeting place of a group of upper class political intellectuals, the Cliveden set of the 1920s and 1930s. However, what made Cliveden famous was the notorious Profumo Affair in 1960s, one of the biggest British political scandal named after John ProfumoSecretary of State for War: in 1961, Profumo met an English former model and showgirl Christine Keeler, at a house party at Cliveden.

During the 1970s, it was occupied by Stanford University of California, who used it as an overseas campus. Today owned by the National Trust, the house is leased as a five-star hotel Cliveden House.

The day we went to Cliveden was coincidentally the 50th anniversary when Profumo made the statement to the House of Commons (Wikipedia), and the visitors were specially allowed to tour around this gorgeous mansion, where normally only guests have an access. The price of the room starts £252 and the most expensive suite room is over £1,5oo per night (rooms) – what a lucky day for us! Unfortunately taking a photo was not permitted to protect guets’ privacy, so I took those photos below from the hotel website.


The swimming pool was featured in the scene of “pool party” in the British film Scandal (1989).


The parterre to the south of the house is one of the largest in Europe at 4 acres (16,000 m2)

Long Garden (two photos above)

給水塔 / Water tower


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