The Playboy Club returns to London in 2011

The Playboy Club plans a return to London in the first half of 2011 with an exclusive club set in the Mayfair area of London.
The new gaming and entertainment venue will feature a restaurant, lounge, members club, table games and high-limit salon prive gaming rooms.

The original Playboy Club London opened in 1966 at 45 Park Lane. At that time, the club attracted some of the most influential clientele in London including Sean Connery, Michael Caine, Joan Collins, George Best, Jack Nicholson, and Muhammad Ali.

“When we first opened the Playboy Club in London it was one of my favorite times for the brand,” said Hugh Hefner, Playboy Founder, Editor-in-Chief and Chief Creative Officer. “With Playboy now more popular than ever, I look forward to our return to London and again sharing the notions that are celebrated in the magazine, the concept of good food and drink, pretty girls, and exciting entertainment.”

Creatively designed to incorporate influences from the original Playboy Club London that opened in 1966, the new venue will integrate gaming with contemporary nightlife in a property that combines the sexy and sophisticated feel of Playboy with the international allure of London. The 17,000 square foot property spread over two floors is being designed by London-based architects Jestico + Whiles.

“When Hugh Hefner opened the original London Playboy Club it redefined class and luxury, setting a new nightlife standard around the world,” said Michael Silberling, Managing Director, London Clubs International. “LCI is honored to partner with Playboy to return the brand to London and create a club and casino experience for a new generation of Playboy Club members.”

There were more than 30 Playboy Clubs at the height of its success, and today Playboy London will join Playboy Club Las Vegas at the Palms Casino Resort, as well as future Playboy venues planned in Cancun, Macao and South Beach, Miami.

[Image via Playboy historical file]

Joan Collins excess baggage bill: $4,966 for $180,000 in luxury bags

While you visit Gadling and read my rant about $45 carry-on bag fees, other air passengers are having having fun turning excess baggage into a challenge – not a complaint.

Take for example Joan Collins – Because she travels a lot between London and the United States, she says she feels “compelled to travel like a packhorse”.

And she isn’t kidding either – each trip involves a professional packing firm, 30 Louis Vuitton cases and baggage transport fees for all those bags.

Think about that for a second – every single time she flies between her two homes, she carries clothes, accessories, books, CD’s, DVD’s and a bunch of other household junk.

Lets put this into numbers for a moment – her luggage firm charges $183 for each bag. Thankfully this price does include door to door service, but the total bill is $4,966 each time she travels (she gets a nice discount when she transports more than five bags).

Of course, that is nothing compared to the estimated value of her Louis Vuitton luggage – with an average price of $6000 each, her collection of monogrammed luggage is worth about $180,000. Kind of makes me worry a little less about paying $25 to have my bag placed in the hold.

I do have a tip for her: if you buy two of everything, you won’t have to transport it between your two homes each time you travel.