These elegant French-style saloon chairs are likely to have been designed by the eminent artist/sculptor Alfred Stevens (d. 1875) and supplied by the court cabinet-makers Messrs Holland and Sons to the celebrated Victorian connoisseur Robert Staynor Holford for Dorchester House. Messrs Holland supplied more than £3,000 worth of furniture for Holford's Park Lane palazzo which had been built by the architect Lewis Vulliamy (d. 1871). The chair-maker W. Bryson, who had assisted them with supplying furniture for the Palace of Westminster, also supplied some of the related walnut chairs invoiced in 1856-58 for the dining-room of Dorchester House, London (some of these chairs were offered anonymously, Sotheby's, London, 15 November 1996, lot 114). They related to chair designs by Stevens preserved in the RIBA Drawings Collection (Alfred Stevens drawings, No. 39). The London historian Edwin Beresford Chancellor wrote of Mr. Holford's taste at Dorchester House: '...the decorations of every room, every piece of furniture or objet d'art which is contained in the mansion is eloquent of his perfect discrimination' (The Private Palaces of London, Past and Present, 1908, pp. 256-257). Dorchester House was sadly demolished in 1929.