Clandestine intelligence sources (HUMINT) have told us about some exclusive up-market “off the map” spy tours and events available in London’s West End. Those covert sources include ex CIA and White House executives, a Latin American agent and other intelligentsia (including UK agents) who have actually attended the tours and events.
The tours are barely given a mention on the web as the tour company concerned seems to be able to pick and choose who it takes on its tours from its existing clientele. No one else offers experiences quite like these anywhere. For that and other reasons you can’t just book a tour the night before and we were told typically three weeks or more notice is needed.
The elite tour company has granted us permission to introduce selected clients but we were asked not to swamp them so we agreed not to mention their name.
The tour company seems to do only a few of these tours a week for up to a maximum of six guests at a time. You and your group will be the only ones on your exclusive tour which is strictly private and tailored to your requirements where necessary. This top notch tour company like to call the tours “experiences or events” so we will too! The reason the numbers are strictly restricted is so that the interaction between guests and those providing the experiences are snug and memorable for all the right reasons.
If truth be told these events are truly exclusive with chauffeur pick-up in the City or West End of London only. However, with prices starting at about £1,000 per group they may not suit everybody’s pocket. Mind you, in terms of exclusive functions, tours, dinners and “experiences” that might be seen as inexpensive to some who fork out much more on far less memorable social or business shindigs at sporting events and the like year in year out.
They would make ideal rewards as once in a life time experiences for English speaking top performing staff visiting or living in London. Alternatively, they would suit a small retirement celebration or other select corporate event as well as family events or similar small celebratory gatherings. (Businesses in some jurisdictions should look at the possibility of being able to reclaim the VAT charged and even getting tax relief on the basic costs. That could make these “experiences” relatively inexpensive when compared with many “dis-allowable” corporate hospitality events.)
According to our “clandestine sources” these tours or events are above all else distinctly memorable and give real value for money for a once in a life time experience. They are “different” and soon get down to the nitty gritty of global espionage (past and present) in central London. You’ll soon realise that if you thought you knew anything about espionage you shouldn’t have thought Bond or Smiley were even remotely real and even those in the trade who’ve attended the tours were dumbfounded at times.
One of our sources commented that notwithstanding his experience as an ex-intelligence officer and director even he learned a couple of tricks of the trade on his tour which, as he put it, might one day pay him large dividends. The guys you will be with should make you start to think laterally, so if you go, do listen carefully and ask apposite questions. The point being, normal businessmen don’t think like spooks but if they did they might just gain the edge on their competitors.
Charges for the events (including UK VAT at 20%) depend on how many of you there are and how many of the tour party attend a special dinner or reception (or nothing) afterwards. Full events including the panoramic tour and a reception/dinner can take up to six or seven hours. We’ve been told the dinners and receptions are excellent and stimulating. The events usually start between 4.00/5.00pm. Those panoramic tours not followed by a reception or dinner last about two and a half hours and are the least expensive.
You can also split a tour into two parts, having the chauffeur driven panoramic tour one night and the dinner or reception at a later date. The tours are in English only and translators are not provided, at the moment anyway. However, you can even have the private dinner or reception in the USA if you can afford to import their human assets!
It’s mainly at the dinners that you might just pick up some rare gems of ideas that you can apply to your life, your business or your career. Those hosting the dinners unassumingly refer to these gems as common sense.
What we have picked up on the grapevine is that these events are not about fiction. That comes home loud and clear when you discover that you and each of your guests are vetted before you can book an event. So if you make a last minute substitution for someone who has been vetted by another person who hasn’t then don’t be surprised if he or she is simply not allowed to get into the limo let alone the private dining room and we doubt if you would dare argue with their “personnel”. One other tip – don’t plan on using your phone or camera – funnily enough you won’t want to when these guys explain why! Anyway, they can provide photos after the event if required.
If you are interested in finding out more about these events (including their terms and conditions) please email us in the first instance via this link giving us an idea of what sort of tour you would be interested in along with any other pertinent details and we’ll be in touch to see how we can help you and explain what it’s likely to cost.
This article was first published on 1st July 2016.