One Alfred Place
The members club with a difference
Company: One Alfred Place Based: London Website:www.onealfredplace.com
Who are you?
Rob Shreeve , founder and chief executive of One Alfred Place.
What do you do?
One Alfred Place was designed as a place for people who live and work outside London who need a place to work, meet and keep up with emails and phone calls while they are in London. They can also entertain clients, do presentations and make sure that when they come into London it isn't a day of hotel lobbies and coffee bars with wasted hours in between when meetings overrun or are delayed.
What does this mean in practice?
We have brought together the style of a Soho House or Shoreditch House with the functions that you get in your own office and the meeting space you get at somewhere like the IOD, in order to give you everything you need while you're in London to do business.
Describe a typical member
That's very tough. The youngest member is 24 and the oldest member is in their seventies. We have everything from accountants to film directors and actors, media people, marketing people, consultants, digital arty people, those working in property and travel businesses and entrepreneurs. It's a very diverse mix and that was the intention.
Why should I care?
You should care next time you're sitting in a crowded hotel lobby paying for over-priced coffee with an aching shoulder from the bag you've been carrying around all day wondering what the hell to do with yourself for the next hour and a half because your meeting's just been cancelled.
What can you do that I cannot do for myself?
One Alfred Place enables you to do business in a way that impresses your clients. One of my marketing members came out of one of the boardrooms here and said to me ‘this place is going to win business for me'. When you're an entrepreneur or a small business starting up, you can't have a boardroom kitted out with £10-15,000 of equipment and furnishings with literally £1m plus worth of art around you, with people running around asking what food you would like.
What mistakes will it prevent me from making?
You can present yourself in a far bigger, better and more stylish way than you could ever do on your own overheads. It means you don't have to invest all the money you would need in order to do business in this kind of style.
Give me an example
We charge £300 a day for boardrooms which is about half the amount that some of the hotels or Regus charge. If you were a company who had a boardroom of this size – 18 ft square – it's going to cost you about £14 or £15 per sq ft. It's costing you nearly £20,000 a year just to have a boardroom.
Why should I trust you?
Trust is an important part as well. It's all part of the style of the place. We have a rule: you respect the members' privacy. If any member repeated tittle tattle they heard in the club to a journalist or something, they would be out. It's a place for people to talk freely knowing that the other members respect their confidence.
What will it cost me?
Annual membership costs £1,500 and there is a one-off joining fee of £150. However, the annual subscription is tax deductable which means it should work out somewhere in the region of £800-£900 per annum.