“History doesn’t repeat itself, but it does rhyme.”
— Mark Twain

Old Burma Clubs 1 – The Pegu, Rangoon

Posted: March 22nd, 2010 | 1 Comment »

A couple of posts with shots (relatively rare) of a couple of the old clubs frequented by the British in Burma back before World War Two when of course Burma was officially part of the Raj. The first , today, is the old Pegu Club in Rangoon. I wish I’d come across this postcard a bit earlier as the Pegu was the club Carl Crow stayed in when he visited Burma to head to Chungking in 1939 and as recorded in his wartime diaries recently edited and issued by yours truly (The Long Road Back to China: Carl Crow’s Burma Road Wartime Diaries).

The Pegu was built and opened some time around the start of the 20th century I think. It was luxurious, set it in its own grounds. Dressing for dinner regardless of the heat was mandatory (as an American assumed to know no better Crow was allowed to wear white trousers when he stayed due to it being the war and him not having brought formal black tie with him!) and the atmosphere was pure British colonial. The club was also well known for its house cocktail – the Pegu (recipe here). Apparently the Club still stands and is now an officers’ mess for the Burmese Army which suggests, to me anyway not being a fan of the Burmese army, that the atmosphere is probably not as convivial as it once was.

Pegu Club - Rangoon

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One Comment on “Old Burma Clubs 1 – The Pegu, Rangoon”

  1. 1 Robin Lung said at 7:36 am on March 22nd, 2010:

    Pegu Club in NYC is in my old stomping grounds of Soho. Will have to stop in for a Pegu cocktail this summer and toast to Carl Crow and Rey Scott (a drinking man who must have downed one or two).


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