Last night (1 March) the Merlin Events team launched the newly refurbished Eye Lounge bar within County Hall for an exclusive guest list of 250 event planners, corporate event bookers and agents. Guests included representatives from DELL, Capita, City of London, SKY, Wedgewood, BBC and Exevent.
The Eye Lounge, sponsored by Pommery Champagne, is a stone’s throw from the Coca-Cola London Eye and complements the adjacent Riverside Rooms, which overlook the Thames and Palace of Westminster. The refurbished venue will be available for guests to enjoy for a variety of occasions, from private receptions following VIP experiences on the London Eye to corporate events and even brides and grooms.
The evening began with guests arriving at the Eye Lounge and being offered a glass of chilled Pommery Brut Royal Champagne prior to enjoying a 30-minute rotation on the Coca-Cola London Eye. Expert hosts from the Merlin Events team were on hand in each capsule advising guests of the latest Merlin news and how they can heighten their events using the new Eye Lounge. Rhubarb Food Design showcased its new on-board canapé menu, which included beef carpaccio on thyme shortbread with rocket gel and truffle marscapone amongst other delights.
After taking in the breathtaking 360-degree views of the capital from 135 metres, partygoers were welcomed into the Riverside Rooms with acclaimed vocalist Adam Croft performing in the Eye Lounge. The cool Baltic Room hosted Blini Bars where guests built their own creations choosing from an assortment of smoked fish, duck rillettes and an array of caviar. Swedish meatballs with mash and lingonberry jam were circulated in bowls, along with cod fricassée and pyttipanna. Cossack dancers wowed guests with their highly energetic and colourful performance.
South America was the next destination for guests to discover, with carnival- inspired décor and trees from the rainforest. With caterer Dish providing the eats throughout all the rooms, guests enjoyed steaming bowls of king prawn boo boo and veggie feijoada with coriander rice immersed in the carnival vibe.
The Asian Room boasted delights from across the lands, with a guest appearance by Po from Kung Fu Panda, who delighted everyone with the ultimate selfies in the Magic Mirror Booth. Later a balletic ribbon dancer, accompanied by a drummer, entertained with an eye-catching performance. As well as a hut serving Asahi beer, there was plenty of food from Chinese street food stalls and even a sushi belt. A traditional lion dance wowed the crowds through the corridor as the party moved up a gear.
Finally, the Speakeasy! “I have an appointment with Dr Gin” was the only way guests could gain access. Once inside they could make their own gin-infused drinks embellishing them with mint, ginger, blueberries and even coriander and lemon grass.
Revellers then descended into London’s most infamous Tavern, set in the London Dungeon. VIP guests were granted a gin cocktail and tunes from DJ Steve kept people dancing until the landlady rang the bell at midnight.