Moving Venue were truly honoured to cater for the first commercial event in Hintze Hall at the Natural History Museum since the refurbishment and installation of Hope the Blue Whale. This is even more poignant for us given that we were the first caterer to work in the Museum some 31 years ago!
This was a highlight of our calendar for more reason than one, as this was not just any birthday party. The host for the evening was Bill Bottriell, one of our shareholders to celebrate his 60th birthday with 340 guests. Adopting an immersive ‘Night at the Museum’ theme, the dress code was black tie glamour to mark the special occasion.
Moving Venue not only catered but project managed the celebration, which included flying Europe’s 17-piece Dov Amiel Band from the South of France to entertain guests, while the National Theatre Company also performed throughout the evening.
Guests arrived through to Gallery 20 where they enjoyed a mixture of canapes and food stations including our fabulous toast bar.
Guests were then invited into the Hintze Hall for dinner under the blue whale skeleton, whilst a baby grand piano was played throughout the meal. Bill had chosen one of our most popular starters to begin with, crispy haddock risotto ball with sweetcorn cream, followed by treacle roast fillet of beef with a mini steak and kidney pudding. Dessert was all about sharing with family and friends, so our pastry chef Ben Knell produced with his team an eclectic array of desserts served to the table for guests to swap and share. Highlights included a Pina Colada cocktail with coconut panna cotta, yuzu meringue pie and a cherry chocolate mousse.
The gourmet food continued after dinner with late night snacks such as fish and chips served in specially-designed newspaper cones featuring Bill as Prime Minister and scoring the winning goal in the Champions League final. A keen Tottenham Hotspur supporter, Bill’s allegiance was also celebrated with the table decorations; the names of Tottenham players transformed into dinosaurs plus an ice sculpture of the Champions League trophy. The celebratory birthday cake was designed and supplied by expert chocolatiers ChoccyWoccyDooDah.
Event florists Pinstripes and Peonies, who have been one of the Natural History Museum’s approved floristry suppliers for six years, created stunning table decorations and a spectacular walkway of lanterns to guide guests through the event. Using a dome of white hydrangea in cubed vases and bar vases filled with purple hydrangea, lilac roses, dahlias, orchids and purple stock flowers brought a deep, rich colour to the hall.
Hawthorn supplied full technical production for the evening including lighting, sound, staging and power distribution.
They installed a large moving light rig which brought the blue whale skeleton– the room’s focal point – to life and provided a red carpet with spectacular flame effects which welcomed guests to the occasion. Hawthorn also supplied a large stage to accommodate the Dov Amiel Band.
Robert Wetherell, head of venue hire at the Natural History Museum, said:
“We were delighted to see our new look Hintze Hall being used for such a spectacular occasion. With all the finishing touches and theming, what is already a dramatic space was transformed into an unforgettable celebration and we hope Mr Bill Bottriell and his guests had an amazing evening.”
From all of us at Moving Venue, welcome Hope and Happy Birthday Bill!