Harrods will open its first private members’ club in Shanghai later this year targeting ultra-high net worth individuals as the luxury department store pins its growth hopes on China, reports the Financial Times. The new facility will be based in the historic Cha House, built in 1920, and will have a Gordon Ramsay restaurant, a bar and lounge, private dining rooms and terraces for members. Annual fees will start from RMB 150,000 (£16,000).
“People don’t like to display wealth as much as they used to do and having that ability to be with like-minded people is hugely important,” said Michael Ward, managing director of Harrods. The retailer, which is ultimately owned by Qatar’s sovereign wealth fund, already has a tea room in Cha House and a bar, which are both open to the public.
Only 250 members will be able to join the members’ club with additional members considered following peer nominations. They will have access to other services that Harrods already offers such as premium travel options and property services. Ward said that Harrods’ owners were supportive of the expansion in China as they “recognise that there is this switch to the east” in terms of luxury growth.