In keeping with the times, Hyderabad’s clubs have shorn off their colonial image and donned the new-age mantle. This means that clubs in Hyderabad now come with trendy restaurants, lounge bars, swimming pool, library, playground for children, shops, beauty salons, gym, sports facilities and whose event calendars extend to film screenings, beauty contests, disco dandia and food festivals. The USP is very simple: amusement for all. Membership options range from lifetime, permanent, and temporary to corporate.
The once-British military officers’ weekend hangout, the legendary Secunderabad Club (Secunderbad) is also the oldest. The club's exclusives include movie screens, petrol pump, sailing annexe (on Hussain Sagar Lake) and entertainment events such as ghazal nights, fashion shows, and inter-club tournaments. All ears? Then get ready to queue up. Minimum wating period: fifteen years!
Nizam Club (Hyderabad GPO) was promoted by Hyderabadi Nizams, as an Indian response to the all-British Secunderabad Club. Its sports facilities are quite commendable: it is here that tennis star Sania Mirza reportedly began her tryst with tennis. The club has around 6000 members. The in-house restaurant’s biriyani is rated amongst the best in Hyderabad. New Club (West Marredpally) was started as a Panwalker family affair. The membership fee of Rs 50,000 (lifetime), makes it the most affordable amongst the lot. And no waiting list!
Among the newer lot, Country Club (Begumpet) is quite popular. Besides the regular club facilities, Country Club has a disc, a licensed shooting gallery, four restaurants and conference facilities. Go for a membership and you will be gifted a free weeklong stay at one of Goa’s enticing resorts.The luxurious Chiraan Fort Club (Begumpet), aptly tagged “Club for the Privileged”, has vast lawns, banquet halls, business rooms and suites, reminiscent of three-star hotels.
Membership at Jubilee Hills International Club (Jubilee Hills) might seem steep, but once you are in and start clubbing with the swish set and corporate bigwigs, you’ll find yourself coalescing into the city’s Page 3 fabric.
North of Hussain Sagar Lake, the once British Sailing Club is still a rage amongst aqua lovers and hosts and prepares its member sailors for national sailing tournaments. Fateh Maidan Club (Hyderabad GPO) has more of sports personnel as members like sports administrators.
Celebrity Club (Begumpet), located in the Hyderabad countryside, doubles up as a weekend getaway for its members.
Long live Hyderabad’s clubs!