THE BULL & BEAR CLUB: A RICHMOND TRADITION
The Bull and Bear Club was inaugurated in 1967 by Harold Richards and Richard Guilford. They were executives from Fidelity Insurance Company in New York City. The Fidelity Insurance Company was establishing itself in Richmond and wanted to develop and build its own building. The Fidelity Building at 8th and Main Streets was the result.
One of the features of the building was going to be a private club at the top two floors, fashioned after the great city clubs in New York and Chicago. As the New York Stock Exchange Club was the most influential private club of the time, the new club was created in its image, choosing to be represented by the two mascots of Wall Street, the bull and the bear.
Liquor by the drink was not available at that time in Virginia, so one of the benefits of membership was having a liquor locker. Purchasing liquor by the bottle was permissible, however patrons had to bring the bottles of liquor with them to restaurants and make their own drinks. The liquor lockers allowed for convenient alcohol storage at the club. Upon a member's arrival, a key would be given to the bartender, who would retrieve the stored alcohol and mix any drinks requested. At the time, it was a luxury previously unknown in Richmond.
The Club also offered fine dining and private banquet rooms, two amenities that were scarce in Richmond in 1967. In its initial phase, the Club was open only to male membership. The first 1000 of these members were given the designation "Charter Member". Pewter mugs with the Charter Member's initials were made and hung in the Grill, the only place where female guests were not allowed.
In the early 1970's, the Bull and Bear Club became the first club to allow female membership, and in 1996 became the first private club in the city to have a female president.
In 1985, the Club moved from its previous location in the Fidelity Building to the newly constructed James Center, on 9th and Cary Streets. The new location allowed for the growing membership to have a centralized location in the heart of Richmond's financial and social district.
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The Bull & Bear Club is Richmond's premier private city club with sweeping vistas of the James River from the 21st floor of One James Center. We are skilled in hosting weddings, receptions, showers and rehearsal dinners and you need not be sponsored by a member. When combined with the main dining room, the Club is able to accommodate up to 450 guests for a cocktail reception and 200 for a sit down dinner.
Our professional staff will work tirelessly to create a perfect event that meets all of your needs. We offer linens, champagne, A/V equipment, bartenders, dance floor, a piano, and exquisite food, all made available for you. The Club's stellar view is the perfect backdrop for your special day.
You and your guests will experience exquisite food by our award-winning chef. With a large dining room and nine private rooms, the Bull & Bear Club offers the perfect space you need for your event. Located in the heart of downtown Richmond's financial and social district, the Club has free parking underneath the building on weekends and evenings.
As an added benefit, we can also refer you to other capable vendors such as DJ's, bands, singers, entertainers, florists, bakeries, ice sculptors, photographers, limousines and more.
Enjoy negotiated discounted rates for hotels in the area as well!
amex, check, visa, master card
Located Downtown on the 21st floor of One James Center