Because we have 50% of our Christmas dates almost booked, now is the time to start planning!
With the #Beastfromtheeast snow blizzard that’s sweeping across London and the rest of the UK at the moment, we can’t help but feel a tiny bit Christmassy!
It may only feel like we’ve just packed away the mistletoe and eaten the last of the Christmas chocolates, yet your boss has tasked you with booking your Christmas party in 10 months’ time! We know the feeling
In the events industry, we’ve noticed, that year-on-year, an increasing number of companies have started to book their Christmas parties up to a whole year in advance. Which means, that by the time the rest of us get round to thinking about Christmas in September/October, the best dates are gone and our favourite venues are already sold out!
Thinking about your Christmas party early in the year takes the stress off of your shoulders: you get the best dates, the venue/location you desire and the best entertainment to wow your guests.
Make the 2018 Christmas Party the one the office will never forget and organise all of the core details now. By the time September comes around, you’ll be booking in your menu tasting whilst everyone else will be kicking themselves for not securing a date when you did.
Click here and let us help you win at being this year’s Christmas Party Planner. #winningatChristmas
What is this?
For most of us, we have never considered having a rehearsal dinner before our big day – it’s something we mainly see in the movies. However the USA trend is becoming more popular on this side of the pond, we have put together some key points as to why they can be a great addition to your special day.
There shouldn’t be any stress during the rehearsal dinner. This is your chance to sit back and enjoy a meal with your loved ones after all the planning and organising! It’s traditionally intimate and only the wedding party that attend to spend some time together and say thanks before the big day!
Yes! Traditionally the mother of the groom will organise the rehearsal dinner so the bride doesn’t have too. Phew!
Traditionally the wedding speeches are done during the rehearsal dinner to give those nervous speakers a chance to practice in an intimate setting.
This doesn’t need to be a huge expense and you don’t need to follow tradition. You can make it as fun and personal as you want. It’s great to have family and friends get together before the big day. You can even give the gifts that you would like the wedding party to wear on the big day!
Here at Graysons Venues, we think rehearsal dinners are a fabulous idea! That’s why we are giving away a Complimentary Rehearsal Dinner for 10 people when you book your Wedding at our Royal Over-Seas League venue! Find out more here.
So, let us organise your rehearsal dinner and we’ll pay for it, all whilst you sit back and relax!Read More
We’re dreaming of hot summer days and warm nights, sipping on a cocktail or two while watching the sun go down! And it’s got us thinking about summer parties and some of the summer party trends that we love.
Over the coming days, we will be highlighting some of our favourite party trends:
BBQ and games:
A classic but a goody. Who doesn’t love a BBQ in Summer, and as we all know, we don’t always have an abundance of hot English summer days so we like to make the most of having a BBQ whenever we can! Whether its traditional English food, American grub or a Pan-Asian twist, you can’t beat that BBQ grilled taste. Adding in some games to keep your guests entertained is always an icebreaker and makes for some hilarious photos and memories. Our team at Rooms on Regents Park specialise in creating delicious BBQs, and with a fantastic lawn overlooking Regents Park, what better way to celebrate Summer in London.
Traditional English picnic
Remember your childhood picnics; huddled up on blankets, eating sandwiches and scotch eggs, drinking a Capri sun and watching the world go by. For a relaxed, informal summer party why not recreate this; relaxing on blankets on the lawn, swapping your Capri sun for some bubbles and strawberries and some sumptuous picnic favourites. Get nostalgic, relax and soak up the atmosphere.
With just a few key elements, you can easily create a beach themed summer party, or you can go the whole hog and add everything in. Grab some deck chairs and a trusty ice cream cart, maybe one of those seaside cardboard cut out boards for some silly photos and decorate the bar into a tiki hut, and you’re instantly transported to the beach! Well, minus the sand and sea!……………actually I’m sure you could get sand for your party too! You could even have some of the food served in a ‘bucket and spade’ , drinks with umbrellas or have some inflatable palm trees.
At Graysons venues we have a fabulous range of outdoor spaces just waiting for you and your guests to let your hair down and relax into Summer. Just let us know your ideas and we will work with you to create your perfect summer party and really impress your guests!
Contact us now at email@example.com to find out more about the different venues we can offer.Read More
After a (let’s be honest) overcast and rather a gloomy weekend, we’re not letting this weather hinder our dreams of a Summer BBQ! Hot on the cocktail coat-tails of our Summer Party Trends PART ONE, here are more of our Summer party trends to help get you into the mood…
A classy affair: Champagne and Oysters on the lawn
For a more sophisticated affair, why not entertain your guests with Champagne and Oysters on the lawn. Whether it’s just for a small get together after work or to make a whole evening of it, you can’t go wrong with this classy summer party. Add in some relaxing music to set the atmosphere, or perhaps some croquet to really set the tone. This year, at the Royal Over-Seas League, this is exactly what they’re doing and it’s proving extremely popular! In the heart of London with views over Green Park, this is the perfect venue to see in those summer nights.
A trip around the world
Let the food and drink do the talking and inspire your senses, transporting you around the world, with themed food stations to really whet your appetite. From South America to Italy, to Asia and India, experience all the flavours from around the world. This is a great theme and a real talking point for your guests. Why not add in decorations on each station to really enhance the theme or even have the staff dress up in traditional cultural attire. At the British Library we can host up to 400 for a reception in the outdoor terrace and terrace restaurant; plenty of space to make this theme become a reality.
Bringing the outside in
Sometimes we just can’t rely on the English weather, and sometimes we just don’t want to. What’s great about all of the above themes is you can recreate them indoors. You could even create an entire lawn indoors. Your guests could arrive and walk into an entire room filled with ‘grass’, be handed a glass of Pimms and relax in a deck chair whilst sampling a selection of BBQ treats and listening to your favourite summer tunes. Take the stress away from watching the weather every day and bring your outdoor summer party indoors. Just pick your venue!
Imagine this covered in grass, with lit up trees along the columns…? Bring the outside in at Spitalfields Venue.
Contact us now at firstname.lastname@example.org to find out more about the different venues we can offer
It’s been a long time coming and we’re very excited to announce that Graysons Venues are officially launching Bar and Bat Mitzvahs at our wonderful collection of venues across London and Sussex!
Welcoming guests with a Champagne and mocktail reception in either of our stunning gardens overlooking Regents Park or Green Park or bathing in a glorious sunset on historic steps in Shoreditch; guests are sure to receive the wow factor on arrival right through to the last song of the night.
We understand the importance of food, drink and entertainment at your event, and we have spent months deliberating over hand-picked suppliers and an all-inclusive package that offers the best standards in the industry. We’re a caterer first and foremost so we will ensure that you’re guests are well fed and well looked after, hospitality is at the heart of what we do.
Our collection of venues are new to the Bar Mitzvah market, so if you’re quick, you can be the first of your friends and family to hold a celebration with us.
Book a meeting now with one of our lovely central sales team to view any (or all!) of our beautiful spaces and to discuss your upcoming Bar Mitzvah in more detail!Read More
As I drove to work this morning along, as Ed Sheeran would say: “those country lanes”, I can’t help but feel lucky that not only is my commute to work fairly simple and stress-free, with none of the daily irritations of heavy traffic, it’s also taking me to a calm and quiet part of the country, Ardingly.
We are very lucky to have some of the most beautiful countryside right on our doorstep here in West Sussex. It brought to the forefront of my mind all of the wonderful team building events held here at the South of England Event Centre, how lucky they were with the fantastic weather on the day of their events, what amazing fun they had, and how great it was to watch them all bonding with each other, and laughing.
I’ve sometimes heard people call team building a pointless exercise, but I believe it’s a great tool for bringing your employees together, enjoying activities they might never normally do, and building relationships that will benefit themselves and you, all whilst leaving behind the daily grind.
It takes them from being shining stars individually to being a strong team together, with the skills to be able to think outside of the corporate box, brainstorm, and share ideas in a safe, happy environment.
The skills your team learn on team building days, are then brought back into your workplace where they can utilise the benefits and you can gain from having a productive and often more responsive team. Do you still think that team building is not for your business? I thought not……
So, let us at the South of England Event Centre help you build up your team and show you why we have the perfect location, with one of our amazing team building packages.
As an added bonus, if you book your team building day with us before 30 June 2018, we will throw in 6 tickets to see ‘Steps’ or ‘Simple minds’ at our venue this summer (T&Cs apply).
Don’t delay, get in contact today, and keep putting your team forward to build on those basics!
See you soon!
Kim Matten, General Manager
South of England Event Centre
Finally, we are seeing some sunshine and heat and when better to think about Summer parties than whilst you are enjoying the Summer weather. Parties are all about relaxing and soaking up the sunshine while sipping on a cocktail or two. Here’s a rundown of our favourite Summer cocktails to whet your appetite………..
A favourite of our team over at the British Library. An Italian classic and popular aperitif. The vibrant colour and refreshing taste make it the perfect drink to kick off your summer party.
Prosecco, Aperol, soda water and a slice of orange served over ice
You can’t really go wrong with this summer classic. A perfect accompaniment to almost any summer party choice, whether it’s a BBQ, picnic or just a few tasty canapés. Fruity, refreshing and a great option for large parties. This classic is a firm favourite at our Rooms on Regents Park venue, paired perfectly with their sumptuous BBQ menu.
Pimm’s, Lemonade and plenty of fruit and cucumber, served over ice with a sprig of mint
A delicious, fresh summer cocktail. A twist on a simple vodka lemonade but with a gorgeous pink colour and a little added sweetness. Perfect for the ladies! You’ll be sure to find the team at our Spitalfields Venue recommending this one!
Vodka, Chambord, Lemon juice, sugar syrup and soda water served over ice
The perfect summer aperitif. This light Prosecco cocktail is so delicious and refreshing. Another classic from Italy, this is a great crowd pleaser and perfect for big parties. You can’t go wrong sipping on this on the lawn of the Royal Over-Seas League, overlooking Green Park. Perfection!
Prosecco, Elderflower cordial, soda water, mint and lime served over ice
You can’t beat this Spanish classic. A fruity, sweet delicious cocktail with plenty of punch! An ideal cocktail choice for your summer party. You’ll be dreaming of Spain with just one sip! With space for up to 30,000 people, the team at our South of England Event Centre will be serving this by the bucket load!
Red wine, fruit, sugar, brandy, triple sec and orange juice served over ice and a dash of soda water
Not only a Cuban favourite but a favourite of our Chartered Insurance Institute team! A simple rum and coke cocktail but the right amount of lime is crucial to lighten and freshen it up, defining the taste of the Cuba Libre.
Bacardi Rum, coke and freshly squeezed lime juice, served over ice
A refreshing gin twist on a mojito. Typically used with crushed mint leaves, the use of the iced mint tea gives this cocktail that extra oomph a minty depth. Your guests will be sure to all love this!
Gin, iced mint tea, lemon juice, sugar syrup and mint leaves, served over ice and topped up with soda
Moroccan spiced mint tea julep
This sweet and spicy mint tea cocktail will add that little something extra to your summer party. This cocktail is sure to be a real talking point!
Bourbon, iced mint tea, Moroccan spiced sugar syrup topped up with ice and mint garnish
For all summer party enquiries contact email@example.com and quote ‘Summer Blog’ to get 2 for 1 cocktails on arrival to your summer party (T&CS apply) if you book by the end of May 2018. Dates are going fast so be sure to enquire now!Read More
You might think you have your perfect wedding all planned out until someone asks you if you’re having a white or black light up dance floor, or what shoes are your bridesmaids are wearing? Then you realise you might have missed some of the finer details!
This is why we still strongly advise our brides (and if you’re lucky, the grooms too) to attend as many wedding fairs as possible in the lead up to their big day – here are our top 5 reasons why they can be a godsend!
Meeting the venue teams face to face and speaking about your special day will really help you narrow down your venue shortlist. This will save you precious time when planning to visit your favourite venues!
Everyone has their most important part of their wedding day. For some of us it’s finding the perfect shade of lily, for some, it’s making sure you get a bangin’ DJ!
By personally meeting the supplier you will get a great feel for wanting to work with them and the endless possibilities they can create, tailored to you personally.
We all know the importance of your Wedding Budget! After attending a wedding fair you will get an idea of costs for your dream wedding which makes planning so much easier. Also – a lot of suppliers and venues will offer a discount if you book after meeting them at the fair, so bonuses all round!
Listening to the specialists at Wedding Fairs can be a huge advantage when planning the day. From insider knowledge about which food and wine to what song gets everyone up dancing (including Grandad!) you’ll be guided through it from the venues and suppliers!
Everyone you speak to will give you brochures and images to take away for you and your partner to read. This will save you so much time instead of trawling through internet pages plus, you might even pick up one or two tasty goodies on the way!
Join us at our Royal Over-Seas League venue for our Wedding Open Evening on Monday 14th May 2018, 6 pm until 8 pm. We will be opening the doors of this unique and elegant members club in the heart of Mayfair.
Join us by RSVPing to firstname.lastname@example.orgRead More
Some of you may have already had the pleasure of speaking or emailing with these lovely ladies, but if you haven’t then certainly get in touch and let them help you create the perfect event at the Royal Over-Seas League.
Patricia is mother goose within the office – leading her team with a firm but caring hand and great skill in developing the whole team.
Growing up in Portugal, Patricia learnt to cook in her grandmother’s kitchen and always spreads this passion to the group by having treats delivered to the office on a (very) regular basis.
Patricia started her events career in hotels and quickly worked her way up in sales roles in a number of fantastic London venues, finally finding her home at The Royal Over-Seas League.
When she’s not in the office, her two dogs Chubbs and Stanley get the rest of her attention; they’re her two babies. Patricia may be slight in stature but when we say she’s the archetypal passionate Mediterranean then we’re not exaggerating – her personality is certainly larger than life!
If you want someone with an encyclopaedic knowledge of events then Patricia is your gal.
Tara is originally from Eastbourne and moved to London in 2007 to study Art Management. She was successful after graduating and began working for Merlin Entertainments where she coordinated events across some of the UK’s greatest tourist attractions. After her time with Merlin she then went on to create corporate events at ZSL London Zoo before joining the Graysons Venues Team at the stunning Royal Over-Seas League.
Tara is very bubbly and has a very fun personality which is why she has such a passion for unique venues and creating amazing events! When she is not planning events, Tara spends her time supporting her favourite football team and during summer months she can usually be found at a music festival!
Tara is our Wedding guru and she always goes the extra mile to make sure the Bride and Groom have the perfect day. Tara is our little ray of sunshine and the office peace-maker.
Tara will also be at our upcoming Wedding Open Evening on Monday 14 May, 6pm-8pm – so do say hello.
Demi is our fresh pea in the office… and when we say Tara is bubbly well, Demi is the whole magnum of bubbly and extremely funny! Demi is a Londoner with her roots in Fulham and now living in trendy Notting Hill.
Demi is spoiled rotten as she is the only child however if you ever want to find her she will be with her four-legged brother Tim in the park. She used to play for Fulham girls football team and she is a Chelsea fan. She loves watching movies and drawing.
Demi may be our baby in the office but she makes up for it in working very hard, always seeking to know more and helping in any way she can. She loves making her clients happy and ensuring all of their events go well.
If Demi could describe herself in one sentence it would be “I am just a happy person who loves food”
Rumbie was born in the southern hemisphere of Africa, Zimbabwe and is no stranger to taking the lead, being the first born out of four siblings. Having travelled from Zimbabwe to San Francisco to England as a child, Rumbie is now settled and loving the UK.
Rumbie is our rock in the office, she is very determined and headstrong. Rumbie values family and friends and loves spending her time with them. Rumbie always finds time to read and cook and although she was a tomboy as a child, nothing makes her happier than receiving flowers.
Rumbie’s comes from a family of health professionals but it was working for her neighbour’s wedding planning company that cemented her love with Hospitality, completing her Masters in International Hospitality and Hotel Management this year. From organising charity events to private parties and Weddings, Rumbie is a hands-on worker who is always there for her clients.
Rumbie only likes pretty drinks, is a high achiever, has a gorgeous daughter who keeps her grounded and she is very open and honest with her clients.
To find out more about our other venue teams visit our ‘Our People’ page.Read More
Graysons Venues are very excited to announce that we have launched our brand new loyalty scheme.
With so many discussions over GDPR and keeping in touch of late, after many discussions, we knew that the main thing we want to do is to reward our amazing clients, both new and existing, so we’ve come up with some fantastic offers exclusively for those who sign up to our loyalty club.
Once a member you will start receiving rewards as soon as you book your first event with us at any one of our unique venues. The more events you book, the more rewards you get!
In addition, you will also receive priority notice for any of our Graysons Venues offers and packages, exclusive invites to venue events and special rewards across our venues. Don’t be the last to find out!
Our official launch date is Monday 14th May and just to make it even more enticing, anyone that signs up by Monday 28th May will automatically be entered into our prize draw to win Champagne Afternoon Tea for up to 20 people, served to your offices! (T&Cs apply)
All you need to do to sign up HERE. Simple.
Let’s keep in touch. Make sure you don’t miss out and sign up today.
We look forward to welcoming you to the Graysons Venues Loyalty Club!
With the excitement of the Royal Wedding in the air, I’m sure I am not the only one following all of the news and social media about the lovely couple!
I read a recent Evening Standard article which made me very happy. According to the article, HRH Prince Harry and Ms Meghan Markle have apparently opted for canapes and trendy bowl food over a traditional sit-down meal!
This made me smile as it happens to be a personal favourite choice of mine; standing bowl food creates a unique and exciting wedding breakfast giving everyone a chance, including the newlyweds, to mingle with all of the guests – something that is often missed during a sit-down meal. For those of you that are looking for your special day to be a little more relaxed and informal – this could be the perfect catering option for you, making your wedding bang on trend!
It’s also been said, the Royal Couple have specified they wanted to make sure the chefs used local seasonal produce which again is another one of Graysons core values. Here at Graysons we pride ourselves on our creativity and working with our clients to create their perfect food choices for their perfect day.
At the Royal Over-Seas League, our professional chefs and Wedding planners are here to listen to what you want and are on hand to help your day unfold as if you were royalty. Don’t forget the Royal Over-Seas League has had Royal connections since 1916 with King George becoming a patron.
If you’ve been inspired by HRH Prince Harry and Ms Meghan Markle and want to see how a bowl food wedding breakfast would work in our stunning garden or if you would like to see how your dream of a traditional sit-down meal would work in our classic Hall of India and Pakistan, then please do contact myself on my details below.
Hope to speak to you soon!
Assistant Sales Manager & Wedding Specialist
Royal Over-Seas League
+44 (0)20 7016 6907
Whilst most are sipping cocktails on rooftop terraces and packing the suntan lotion for summer holidays, those of us in the events world are already in full swing for Christmas 2018 preparations.
For the majority, Christmas is one jolly month of the year where you can drink bucket loads of mulled wine and queue up for churros and German sausages at winter markets until your heart is content. For us at Graysons, Christmas is all year round; we know the carols better than anyone and we’ve possibly tasted more Turkey dinners than Father Christmas!
There isn’t a week that goes by that we don’t hear from clients looking for a venue for their upcoming festivities. Whilst it seems a silly time to be thinking that far ahead, now is the time to secure your dates or you may be enjoying your party on a Monday… with a sore head at work on Tuesday!
This year is looking bigger and better than ever! Whilst you enjoy the summer sunshine, don’t forget to start thinking ahead to your Christmas party; secure your dates now and we’ll look after the rest of the sparkle!
Throwing it back to 2017, our festive elves were busy across London and Sussex to ensure that every party had every last bit of Christmas sparkle. We had sleigh-fulls of Prosecco on ice, photo booths in every corner and we bought every last pig in blanket our butcher could get his hands on!
Check out some of the parties we had at our venue of the month: Spitalfields Venue.
Could be your 2018 Christmas party location…?
The decision will see Daniel Sykes lead Graysons’ business and industry (B&I) operations while Laurent Lucas-Dufour focuses on the commercial venue’s business.
Laurent Lucas-Dufour from Harbour & Jones. With a wealth of senior management experience in venues, commercial businesses, and top hotels, Laurent leads our operations team for venues, public visitor, and commercial sites.
Dan Sykes joins from Baxter Storey. Dan started his career in busy and successful high street restaurants and then headed up one of London’s most impressive public visitor attractions. He then made the move into corporate catering leading some of the biggest and most prestigious accounts. He is an accomplished operator and a true people person creating loyal and motivated teams who truly deliver.
Graysons managing director, Tim O’Neill, commented: “Laurent and Daniel’s appointments are part of our overall strategy to consolidate our business in the marketplace and achieve our growth targets over the next two years.
“They add another dimension to the team and are highly experienced professionals who now lead our entire operations team.”
Graysons and Slow Food in the UK are collaborating to support the Ark of Taste, the International “At Risk Register” for rare and heritage varieties of crops and breeds.
There are currently more than 150 rare varieties of crops and breeds in the UK and more than 4,500 recorded worldwide.
Graysons have nominated products to the Ark and ensured that these products come through our supply chain and are used throughout our units. These include Blenheim Orange Apple, Laxtons Superior Apple, English Ewes Milk Cheeses (Berkswell) and English Raw Milk Cheeses (Stichelton). We continue to work to nominate other rare and at risk produce and breeds in our commitment to these fantastic quality products.
Graysons will be utilising the Ark Products on their menus throughout their portfolio. Including our commercial venues such as the British Library, the Royal Over-Seas League, and Rooms on Regent’s Park.
Barry Nichols, Graysons Executive Head Chef said “We see the support and use of Ark products as part of our core values: that we can support our food heritage in a tangible and sustainable way’’.
As part of our commitment to the Ark of Taste Graysons are producing chutney to made with Blenheim Orange apples, preserving what is otherwise a seasonal fruit, sustaining British orchards and delivering a fantastic tasting product for retail throughout our units.
Shane Holland, Executive Chairman of Slow Food in the UK says “The Ark of Taste is critical to maintaining a wider pool of genetic diversity, crucial in these times of climate change and increased pests and crop disease. Graysons’ support of Ark apples for example means that these products remain viable against a backdrop of 70% of all the apples we eat coming from just three varieties.
British farming, and with it the landscape that we all enjoy, have never been under so much stress and uncertainty. Working with Graysons to source Ark products which are indigenous to the area of their sites, means that genuinely local food will be served, which will in turn return income to the communities where they operate”
Barry Nichols has also joined the Slow Food Chef Alliance, a roll-call of Chefs which include Michel Roux, Giorgio Locatelli and Raymond Blanc who all have committed to using Ark of Taste Products.
Slow Food is also working in partnership with Graysons supporting food events at our sites with food education and food markets as part of the wider Graysons offer.Read More
Your guests will make their way up Bishopsgate to a venue so pronounced, you can’t miss it. You will be welcomed up the stone steps of the Church and into the striking Nave for an arrival reception. The scents of fresh pines from the Christmas tree combined with aromatic winter spices will welcome your guests into this amazing venue, Spitalfields Venue.
Whilst you admire the intricate architecture in awe, why not talk to us about having a local historian present to tell you a bit of history around the venue. The building was built over 300 years ago and there are definitely some stories to tell!
Following a delicious seasonal banquet we will then invite guests downstairs into the recently refurbished Crypt to reveal the evening’s entertainment (and if you have included one of the local historians, you will know some fascinating previous uses of this space!) We will organise the DJ, the dance floor and the bar and all you have to worry about is having a good time!
In December 2017 we served 3,963 cups of mulled wine, we made 620 gingerbread men (plus 2 gingerbread houses), served 1109 Christmas dinners and this year it’s no different.
The hustle and bustle around CCSpits at Christmas is what adds to its festive charm. For every night there’s not a Christmas party, there will be a carol service echoing through the ornate arches. Whilst we close the doors to our last party on the 23rdDecember, the Church is gearing up for their Christmas Eve service and the rest that follow. For us – the festivities don’t stop until the final pines drop off the tree in early January when it’s time to pack away the decorations for another year.
With dates selling out fast, make sure you don’t miss out on this traditional Christmas experience at our venue of the month: Spitalfields Venue and get in touch now to secure your Christmas Party space.
Christmas at Spitalfields Venue.Read More
As you may have seen from our social media of late, we are in the midst of celebrating our 10th year as Graysons. And what a fantastic 10 years it’s been so far!
We’ve been reminiscing about the incredible range of achievements we’ve had over the years and there are just so many to choose from.
The #Graysons10years anniversary party last week at our Spitalfields Venue was a brilliant reminder of all we’ve achieved so far and certainly showcased our intentions for the next 10. Be sure to check out the images across our social media platforms @graysonsvenues and @graysonsuk.
It’s been our absolute pleasure to operate within some amazing places, BMW Group UK, Francis Crick Institute, Commonwealth Bank of Australia, IOP Publishing to name just a few. And of course, our inspiring collection of venues here. (Ask us about hosting an event at one of them today!)
We are so very proud to have an amazing team of people both leading the way for Graysons at our head office, as well as our talented team of chefs, operations and sales teams across our range of sites. We certainly wouldn’t be here without them.
Our talented chefs continue to amaze us with their culinary expertise and ability to tailor menus to suit every type of meal option or event. Creating such tantalising and mouth-watering menus for hundreds of thousands of people every year! Find out more about our recent partnership with the Ark of Taste, the International “At Risk Register” for rare and heritage varieties of crops and breeds and keep an eye out for more on our ‘Plate up for the Planet’ initiatives with the Vegan Society.
And now we look towards the next ten years and the exciting ventures upon us. The appointment of two fantastic new operations directors certainly means we are in safe hands on this journey. Join us and keep up to date with the latest at Graysons by signing up to our Loyalty Club here.
Here’s to the next 10!
Spitalfields Venue is our June venue of the month and what better opportunity to look back at its incredible almost 300-year history! So, grab a hot drink and settle in for this trip through time with us.
Established as part of the ‘Commission for Building Fifty New Churches’, Christ Church Spitalfields was built by the famous, Nicholas Hawksmoor between 1714 and 1729.
By the middle of the 20th century, the building was unkempt and at risk of demolition. The Friends of Christ Church and the Spitalfields Festival, made up of the congregation and local community groups, came together to fundraise for its renovation and in 2004 the Nave was reopened.
Now beautifully restored as a landmark of East London, thanks to donations from a number of generous benefactors and trusts it continues to be home to an active church congregation and has opened its doors as a public building to the thousands who visit each year.
It’s hard not to be in awe of the beautiful Baroque Organ within the Nave. Originally inaugurated in 1735 and became derelict, along with the building around the 1960s. The organ was restored and completed for use by 2014; people travel from all over the world to come and see this stunning masterpiece.
Emerging from the Nave renovations was a special project to redevelop the Crypt.
Reopened in 2015, one can now easily see Hawksmoor’s original design and the new oak renovations have created a bright and airy cafe and events space.
The Crypt has had many unique uses over the years:
Surprisingly, this Huguenot Chapel is older than Christ Church itself. By the 1960s, Christ Church was derelict and services began to take place in the Church Hall (now known as Hanbury Hall).
Built in 1719 as a French Huguenot Church, Hanbury Hall has many historic uses over the years:
Along with the Crypt at Christ Church, Hanbury Hall was restored and reopened in 2015.
With such an incredible history, one may find it tough not to feel awe-struck and inspired when visiting Spitalfields Venue. Be it through lunch at the Cafe in the Crypt, a coffee while you work at Hanbury Hall, or during your event in the Nave – keep an eye out for the signs of this stunning venues history.Read More
As much as we love the summer and we wait for the papers to tell us about the latest heat wave coming our way, we all know you can never quite rely on the English sun to beam when you want it to.
Planning a winter wedding takes the stress away and turns a miserable winter into something to look forward to. So, here’s our top 5 ideas to help create a magical winter wedding at our stunning venue of the month, Spitalfields Venue.
Candles give off such warm and inviting glow in winter. With the shorter days add a touch of light to line the steps of the church. Hurricane lanterns filled with candles add that wow-factor as guests arrive following your ceremony. Within the Nave you could have your wedding breakfast lit simply by candlelight and fill the room with candles setting a gorgeous romantic feel.
Offering guests a winter warmer cocktail on arrival rather than Champagne or Prosecco always goes down well when it’s cold outside! Warm guests up with a glass of winter Pimms; a great crowd pleaser and with all the flavours of winter. Alternatively, if it’s a Christmas wedding, mulled wine works really well and the smell instantly makes you feel Christmassy.
With a winter wedding, there are so many options for flowers to help create your perfect winter setting. For a late-Autumn wedding, oranges, deep reds, berries and greenery look beautiful and work perfectly for capturing the tones of Autumn. Winter wonderland themes with icy colours look stunning; whites, silvers and greenery dusted or sprayed with silver to look snowy create stunning centrepieces or bouquets. All of which look stunning with the warm tones and white facades within the Nave.
Along with the candlelit options, lighting within the venue can give it a whole other feeling, as the evening draws in, uplighters can be put on the outside of the church, in the Nave and in the Crypt completely transforming the venue.
Let’s not forget fairy lights. The way they sparkling in the evening light oozes elegance and celebration. Use them as path lighting or as a magical backdrop for your top table or dance floor.
If you and your guests are celebrating well into the evening and the drinks are flowing, it’s always a good idea to offer an evening bite and Wintery snacks are just the thing to get your guests’ mouths watering. We’re thinking ham hock croquettes, turkey and cranberry sausage rolls, pumpkin soup shots, brie and chutney mini tartlets or burger sliders. If you’re going with a Christmas themed wedding then offering eggnog, mulled wine and a tower of mince pies could be just the ticket.
Steeped in history, find out more about holding a winter wedding reception at our Spitalfields Venue and make the cool months of winter something to look forward too!Read More
Times are certainly changing and here at Graysons, we’re changing with them! Let us introduce you to our new virtual reality venue dollhouses!
As much as we would love to see you at our venues, and show you around them ourselves, we understand that’s not always possible. So, take a walk through them from the comfort of your desk with our new VR Venue Dollhouses.
Sit back and relax as it walks you through the building, or take the reins and walk through yourself with the click of a mouse or put on your VR headgear/Google cardboard and walk through virtually!
The perfect opportunity to see where you or your guests will walk when they arrive, work out where you will go to get to the private room, what the reception area looks like, where the bathroom is or the garden for drinks before your event. No longer will you have to figure out how the room will look through a still photograph, a floor plan and a spot of guessing, you simply need to click the dollhouse link.
Check out our venue dollhouses here…
Being a sales manager at Rooms on Regent’s Park for some time now I am often researching to find what makes a venue enticing to bookers. I’ve found it’s a combination of factors, all different dependant on the event type, organizer, the time of the year, the team who runs the establishment and so many other things. One that appears almost every time is the location of the venue.
This morning on my way out of Baker Street Station as I dodged commuters and tourists it made me realise how lucky we are with what London and the Regent’s Park has to offer, all of the cultural opportunities, the theatres, movies, museums, parks and how many of those things can be utilised for events.
I saw people with flyers for Madame Tussauds Museum, all with their cameras ready to take photos of wax actors/celebrities/royalty/musicians and people of importance. No doubt by now their phones are full of pictures of them hugging ET, kissing Tom Hardy, pulling a face of envy next to Meghan and Harry and so on.
As I walk towards Regent’s Park, the pavement in front of the Sherlock Holmes Museum was just as busy. At 8.30 am people were already queuing up to get their tickets to see what the establishment has to offer. I personally love reading and have read a few of the stories written by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle and how detective Holmes and his friend/colleague/partner in “crime” Dr Watson lived at the famous 221b Baker Street. However, until recently, I didn’t know that the house (which is the home of the Museum) is protected by the government due to its “special architectural and historical interest”.
Continuing my journey along Regent’s Park the Boating Lake comes into view. I could go on about how much this park (that happens to be my favourite in London) has to offer. There is the Open Air Theatre, Queen Mary Gardens, Regent’s Park Allotment Gardens and my ultimate favourite in late spring, The Avenue Gardens. Those beautiful cherry blossoms, the fountains, the little benches. It is just “the best spot” for a book to read on a lazy weekend afternoon or to take delegates for an afternoon outing.
Upon my arrival, I am amazed that all of the above is “a stone’s throw” away from Rooms on Regent’s Park and attractive enough to have as an additional activity for any client. It’s also something that any of us could try in our spare time on the weekends!
Rooms on Regent’s Park
We often read enticing pieces online, via social media and through blogs, that speak of the amazing events you can have, how wonderful the spaces will look or how delectable your meal will be – all to whet the appetite. We don’t often read about the incredible teams of people, working tirelessly in the background to ensure your event runs smoothly and you have all you need.
So far, this summer has been a busy one for event operations at Rooms on Regent’s Park and it is our pleasure that the team have let us in on a small secret of theirs. They strive to deliver a range of bespoke menu choices for our conference and banqueting events and their ability to tailor dishes and the latest seasonal wines to each event is on point this year. They’ve even added the refreshing addition of summer smoothies, which have been widely complimented. But that’s not the secret…
Jason Bunting our head chef, has an amazing pallet for favours and seeing him at work is inspiring. This July, Jason transformed the dining menu at Rooms on Regent’s Park to incorporate seasonal vegetables and fresh seafood. Adding an excellent garnish that brings out a four-dimensional visual and taste explosion.
One of our favourites is the Seared Sea scallops laid on black pudding seasoned then glistened with an emulsion pea puree then pickled apple, finished with micro sorrel. This dish or light starter is great when paired with our Summer seasonal wine selection, however, our operations team personally prefer the Crucillon Viura Blanco 2017 with this dish. This combination works well for hot summer evenings as well as giving you a refreshing start to the dining experience.
So, when booking your next event at Rooms on Regent’s Park, ask the team about creating a bespoke dining experience from Jason’s incredible menus and pair that with a recommended beverage – we might even be able to let you in on a few more of our Operations team secrets.
Our Rooms on Regent’s Park venue is our July Venue of the Month and as a special treat their head chef Jason has given us one of the recipes from his Summer dining menu.
Have you ever been to an event and wished you knew how to make the mouth-watering food in front of you? Now you can give it a go from the comfort of your kitchen, at home!
How about giving this a go at the weekend?
2 x 4 or 5oz chicken fillets
200 grams ricotta cheese
40 grams shaved parmesan
A sprig of fresh mint
A sprig of fresh oregano
A sprig of basil
1 tablespoon lemon zest
1 tablespoon of lime zest
4 slices of pancetta
1 egg yolk
Salt and pepper
1 large handful of baby spinach
Half a medium-sized avocado
125 grams of potato
Half a teaspoon of baking powder
35 grams flour
60 ml milk
1 tablespoon chopped chives
Place the chicken between two pieces of cling wrap. Using a meat mallet, slowly bang the chicken out to twice the size and refrigerate.
Grate the lemon and lime zest into the ricotta cheese and add the herbs, one egg and egg yolk.
Put two tablespoons of the ricotta mixture onto one end of the flattened chicken, lay the avocado on top followed by the pancetta and spinach. Place chicken on a large piece of cling wrap and slowly roll it up, bringing the sides together to tighten into a roll and tie both ends together.
Bring a medium sized saucepan half full of water to a simmer and add the cling film wrapped chicken, cook for 12 minutes.
Take out and rest the chicken on the bench for 10 minutes.
To make the potato pancake, boil the potatoes, mash and then cool. Once cool add the flour and baking powder until smooth and well mixed, add the egg and milk and whisk to a smooth consistency. Season with salt and pepper.
In a pan heat a little olive oil and when hot, ladle around 100ml of the mixture into the pan and turn the flame or element down. Cook both sides for 4 minutes.
Put the pancake on a serving plate. Unwrap the chicken, slice in half and place on the pancake.
Serve with a chicken jus or red pepper coulis, and seasonal vegetables.
Last month our Graysons teams were in full charity mode, with our executive team sailing to raise money for Springboard and our central team gave back by helping to clear the Thames Riverbank with the BNC and Thames21 (#nomorewetwipes).
Having the opportunity to give back, both to the environment and to people is a key driver for us at Graysons. Through our participation in the Springboard Hospitality Sailing Cup, our teams time and donation helped The Springboard Charity to help young people achieve their potential, nurture unemployed individuals into work and help alleviate poverty by supporting people into sustainable employment within the hospitality, leisure and tourism industry – Wow!
Their contribution across the two days directly helped young people, safeguarding their future employment and gave back to an industry that provides enjoyment to so many.
Later in the month, our Central Sales Team gave up a day to help safeguard our local environment by helping to clear the River Thames
In conjunction with the BNC, our team helped Thames 21 start to put a healthy river at the heart of our community. Thames 21 focus on rebuilding the relationship between communities and their rivers; restoring river health and boosting wellbeing and community cohesion in the process. Our morning spent on the Thames riverbank helped to clear at least 50+ rubbish bags worth of general rubbish, debris, clothes, stale food and hundreds and hundreds of wet wipes from the river bank, even a few broken bottles and knives!
To quote Richard Branson “Clients do not come first. Employees come first. If you take care of your employees, they will take care of the clients”. A quote we certainly agree with here at Graysons and our team at Rooms on Regent’s Park are leading the way to make this a reality.
In a world full of sales targets, budgets, KPIs and high financial expectations to contend with our General Manager at Rooms on Regent’s Park put a unique incentive scheme in place to help encourage their sales team to beat their targets.
Being in the catering business, our sales team are massive foodies, and what better way to incentivise a ‘foodie’ team than with a chance to dine at a Michelin star restaurant. It was just the extra push they needed to beat their sales target!
On Friday the 1stof June the Sales team had an amazing fine dining experience at Sketch, London. The Menu created by the French Chef Pierre Gagnaire offers sensational and unique plates guiding the customers towards a superb food experience that rarely happens in life. The fabulous service and the attention to detail left the team completely speechless.
For Event Sales Co-Ordinator, Poe Tauhiro, trying Pierre Gagnaire’s food was a bucket list item for a long time.
So, with such great feedback, maybe we should all take a page from the Rooms on Regent’s Park playbook and find unique and inspiring ways to incentivise our teams?!
As a good sales coordinator, you always want to keep in touch with the new trends, what events are becoming popular, what are the new demands. On that same note, you also need to know a lot about the events held at your venue. What are the traditions behind certain events, what are the different do’s and don’ts when it comes to arranging the variety of different functions at a venue like Rooms on Regent’s park where we can host so many types of events?
With our majestic Nuffield Hall being available at the weekends and our wonderful location in the NW postcode area, we are fast becoming a popular Bar and Bat, Mitzvah venue and because of this, we make a point to understand the traditions and celebrations surrounding these.
The history behind these events is a fascinating one. Traditionally taking place after a girl’s 13thbirthday, and a boy’s 12th, these events would generally mark the age when a young man or woman would be ready to take their place as a full member of the community in being able to lead religious services and Prayer and would bear their own responsibility for their actions and adherence to religious law. Though the Bar-Mitzvah, has a long and well-established history, the Bat-Mitzvah’s is slightly less certain. Though coming of age ceremonies and observances have taken place in various Jewish communities throughout history these were not always been accepted by the full spectrum of the practising Jewish world.
One of the major steps towards its current widespread nature was the Bat-Mitzvah of Judith Kaplan, daughter of Rabbi Mordecai Kaplan – the founder of Reconstructionist Judaism, which was the first public celebration of its kind in the United States and leads to more acceptance of the practice across many branches of Judaism.
As with a lot of major life events though, they make a great reason for a celebration and social event – a tradition which is far from modern, as 13thCentury texts have noted that on this occasion a father should “make a party for his son” (though their definition for a party could well be different from ours).
Though some may opt for a simple family dinner for others the party is a major production and the organisation and staffing of them sustains a field of caterers, entertainers, dancers, musicians and motivators who ensure that a good time is had by all.
The nights are starting to draw in and the weather has very definitely turned, which can only mean one thing, the Autumn Winter party season must be starting! Whether it’s awards ceremonies, client thank you events or end of year parties, the run up to Christmas is always a very busy time for events.
Christ Church Spitalfields situated just a five minute walk from Liverpool Street, is the perfect venue for your autumnal event. With stunning uplighting packages which accentuate the beauty of this space and which add a really striking impact from the outside of the building and throughout.
Our main space is The Nave with a capacity for 600 standing or 250 for a seated dinner, this space is truly a stunning backdrop for your special event. Boasting high ceilings, dramatic columns and magnificent chandeliers this space really does add a touch of glamour for any event.
It’s not too late for you to host your special event, drinks reception or gala dinner in Spitalfields Venue. We have a special promotion running for drinks receptions in our awe-inspiring Nave, which can hold up to 600 guests.
If you book your drinks reception for October – November 2019 it will cost just
£85.00 + VAT per person based on a minimum of 150 guests.
The package includes:
Exclusive venue hire from 18:00-22:30
Sparkling reception on arrival
Selection of seasonal bowl food (4 items)
1⁄2 Bottle of wine and water
Sound and lighting package
Full event management
Security and staff
If you’d like to take advantage of this great offer, please get in touch with our friendly sales team who would be happy to answer any questions and help you organise your event –
But hurry as dates are selling out fast!
Spitalfields Venue Christ Church,
Tel: 020 7377 6793
Graysons are proud to present The National Archives, a venue which is newly available to hire, offering a truly unique opportunity to host your meeting or event in one of the most iconic government buildings.
The building is the official archive for the UK Government, and for England and Wales, holding over 1,000 years of iconic national documents including the Domesday Book and Shakespeare’s will.
Situated alongside the river in leafy Kew, The National Archives is a year-round venue with extensive, landscaped grounds offering both daytime and evening hire. Our high-quality event and conference facilities can accommodate guests for anything from a small meeting of 10, conferences, lectures, film screenings for up to 250, gala dinners for up to 120 or standing summer receptions in the gardens for up to 300.
The six event spaces include the Events Auditorium, the Talks Rooms’, the Learning Room, the Atrium and the Gardens. Our unique offer includes optional ‘heritage experiences’ as part of our day delegate rate packages: from behind-the-scenes tours and original document displays, to themed expert talks and events.
To find out more or to book your next event with us,
contact our dedicated team on:
0203 906 9303 or email@example.com
The National Archives
When we think of a traditional English wedding, we envision a beautiful country manor and acres of beautiful gardens. If this is your dream wedding, then you will love our beautiful Sussex venue, Wakehurst.
A breathtakingly beautiful wild botanic garden managed by the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew. Nestled in 500 acres of gardens and woodlands the photo opportunities here are endless. We provide the in-house catering and our talented Chefs can create tailored sumptuous menu’s based on the clients unique tastes.
The most popular space for weddings at Wakehurst is in the Elizabethan Mansion, steeped in history, this traditional manor house provides a grand setting for wedding celebrations. It is suitable for weddings from 20 to 80 guests seated and up to 180 in the evening. There is the option of seating up to 140 guests over the two adjoining rooms.
For larger weddings marquee or tipi tents can be used on our croquet lawns adjacent to the Mansion itself, providing a grand backdrop for your special day. Suitable for weddings up to 200 guests.
Wakehurst is proud to be home to the Millennium Seed Bank, this contemporary world-famous glass atrium is a unique space to hold your drinks reception, with space on the lawns behind the Seed Bank to house a marquee.
If you’re on the hunt for a wedding venue or have any questions about weddings at Wakehurst, please do get in touch with our friendly
Weddings & Events Manager Jo Chellingworth.
Ardingly, Haywards Heath,
On 15th November 2019 the doors of Rooms on Regents Park will be closing and the Royal College of Obstetricians & Gynaecologists (RCOG) will be moving to a new location in the heart of the busy and vibrant London Bridge area.
We are delighted to announce we will have a brand-new venue opening from March 2020 and we are looking forward to welcoming you to our new home, 10 Union Street. Our new venue combines flexible and purpose-built meeting and events space, making the best use of technology, including video conferencing and first-class audio-visual facilities.
Each room has large windows with plenty of natural light flooding through, there are 12 spaces in total spanning 3 floors and capacities from 5-300. We have a broad range of rooms to suit all requirements, our largest space even boasts views of the Shard!
As an opening offer, we are holding our 2019 prices for bookings made before 31st December 2019, for your first event at Union Street.
To find out more please get in touch with our friendly sales team using the details below.
10-18 Union Street
As the year draws to a close, we’ve been reflecting on the amazing achievements across our business over the last twelve months, including the opening of many new contracts.
In January we added Wakehurst Place to our venues collection.
Set in the heart of West Sussex, the wild botanical gardens of Wakehurst have been a beautiful backdrop for weddings and corporate events.
Surrounded by acres of greenery, we also had the addition of The Wimbledon Club, one of Surrey’s premier multi-sport clubs.
This venue has six spacious event rooms, some overlooking the courts and greenery and it can be used for a variety of events, such as parties, meetings and conferences and much more.
In November we also said goodbye to our venue Rooms on Regents Park, as the Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists moved locations to 10 Union Street, London Bridge. This has also been an exciting time as our new events space opens to the public in early 2020, filled with 12 event spaces, high spec technology, video conferencing and first-class audio-visual facilities.
We have many exciting changes to unveil, including the addition of yet another amazing venue to our growing portfolio in January!
For now, we want to thank our amazing clients for your continued support, we hope you have a wonderful festive period and we look forward to doing business with you in the new year!Read More
Kicking off the new year with a bang, Graysons are proud to announce that the
Royal Pharmaceutical Society is the latest addition to our growing venue collection.
Based in Whitechapel, the Royal Pharmaceutical Society is the professional body for pharmacists and pharmaceutical scientists in Great Britain.
This venue has two large events spaces and two smaller meeting rooms, making it the perfect venue meetings of up to 130 people and receptions, parties and celebrations for up to 150 guests.
Guests can also enjoy stunning panoramic views of London from the top floor balcony, making it an ideal back drop for dinners and cocktail receptions. While meetings and events held on the ground floor, benefit from the unique back drop of the beautiful museum and library.
We will have a variety of new packages coming throughout the year and lots of exciting offers to look out for! To keep up to date be sure to follow us on Twitter
Do you have any upcoming events in 2020? As an opening offer, we’re giving 10% for any 2020 bookings made before January 31st. To find out more and to discuss your event requirements, please get in touch with our friendly sales team today.
There’s something so magical about the festive season, everyone is always in high spirits, so it’s no wonder it’s the most popular time of year to get engaged! Over 100,000 engagements were expected to take place over the festive season in 2019, were you one of the lucky couples?
Perhaps you are looking for some inspiration for your wedding venue? If so, we can help, here are our top picks for your dream day.
London has many hidden gems dotted around the city, one such venue is Spitalfields Venue, otherwise known as Christ Church Spitalfields. This architectural masterpiece was designed by Nicholas Hawksmoor and it is the perfect contrast between old city charm and trendy East London.
The Baroque splendour of Christ Church Spitalfields creates an elegant backdrop for your special day. Celebrate your wedding breakfast against the stunning backdrop of the Nave, before moving down to the vaulted Crypt to dance the night away.
If you’ve always dreamt of a country wedding, Wakehurst is perfect! Surrounded by wild botanic gardens in the heart of Sussex, it is a dreamy backdrop.
There are multiple options available for your big day, you could hold your wedding within the Elizabethan Mansion, with views of the Mansion Pond and gardens.
The Mansion has three reception rooms – giving you flexibility over how you wish your wedding to flow. The Dining Room, Gallery and Library are connected by a charming entrance foyer with sweeping staircase, which is a perfect backdrop for both formal and more relaxed photography.
If you prefer being in the great outdoors, or you’re planning for a bohemian, rustic style festival wedding, the croquet lawn is perfectly situated for a wedding marquee or tipi with breath-taking views across the gardens.
Last but not least, there’s the option of holding your wedding in the Millennium Seed Bank. The world-renowned Millennium Seed Bank provides a modern and architecturally striking setting for standing wedding receptions and parties.
If Wakehurst seems like the one for you, you’ll want to check out our great offer for weddings in 2020.
Royal Over-Seas League
The Royal Over-Seas League is an elegant venue in Mayfair offering a unique and tranquil setting for your special day. This historic listed building features superb views and is minutes from Buckingham Palace and other wonderful attractions in the West End.
Comprising two Grade I listed buildings the Over-Seas House offers a range of splendid period function rooms; many with exquisite views over a private garden and into Green Park.
Licensed to hold civil wedding ceremonies; they offer a complete and exemplary service, for 20 to 200 guests. And with a dedicated event coordinator to work with you on every detail, you can be sure of a memorable day.
In the summer months the beautiful private Garden, with terrace and lawn, makes an ideal setting for a champagne and canapé reception.
If The Royal Over-Seas League seems like the venue for you, click here for more information out our 2020 wedding promotion.Read More
The West End of London is well-known for its attractions and hustle and bustle, so that makes it the perfect place to host your meetings and conferences.
The Royal Over-Seas League is our hidden gem, tucked away in the heart of St James and just behind Green Park, with a discreet and serene location you would easily forget that you are in the heart of London!
This central location is perfect as the venue is within easy reach and has great transport links.
The Royal Over-Seas league is one of London’s most unique private members clubs.
This Grade I listed building offers unique conference and banqueting facilities and splendid period function rooms, ideal for holding syndicate workshops and major conferences, to corporate celebrations.
The building is home to seven meeting and function rooms, with the largest accommodating up to 250 guests standing and 196 when seated, whilst smaller spaces seat between 2 and 50 people.
The two largest halls hold up to 250 guests and are ideal for conferences, presentations and small exhibitions. The Princess Alexandra Hall has in-built AV and superb acoustics, whilst the Hall of India and Pakistan can be split into two spaces with a private bar.
If you are on the hunt for a small space to host your board meeting, there are five smaller rooms which can accommodate from 2 to 50 delegates. With elegant period details, these bright and airy rooms can add a touch of history to any meeting or event.
If the Royal Over-Seas League sounds like the venue for you, get in touch with our friendly team to find out more about how we can help you plan your next event.
St James’ Street,
London SW1A 1LR
0207 408 0214
As the leading sustainable caterer in the UK, Graysons was recently approached to take part in a UK special of popular French TV series, Down to Earth.
The programme, which aired on France 24 at the beginning of February 2020, was filmed at one of Graysons’ prestigious locations, Wakehurst.
The episode, ‘Food security and seeds: Inviting wild relatives to the table’, was filmed across Wakehurst’s famous Millennium Seed Bank and the kitchens of the stunning Elizabethan mansion house set within wild botanic gardens.
The human diet as we know it is under increasing threat. Of the current 6,000 plants species that are available and farmed for consumption, a mere nine of them account for whopping two thirds of production. Climate change, the spread of disease and political instability pose a big threat to our food security. With such a limited pool of species in production, we are amplifying these threats exponentially.
As a result, the programme poses two clear choices: increase the variety of what we eat, or increase the strength of our favourite crops, such as wheat, rice and potatoes.
The Millennium Seed Bank is the largest of its kind in the world. It holds six storerooms at minus 20 degrees Celsius which prolong the life of thousands of wild seeds. Many of the seeds are wild cousins to our favoured crops which have evolved to live on the margins and are used to surviving more hostile conditions compared to our domesticated farm crops. Some of the stored species are already extinct in the wild and can be reintroduced as and when our traditional crops become unviable.
Graysons is passionate about protecting our biodiversity and British cultural food heritage. This ethos goes to the very core of our business and what we care about and celebrate on the plate.
One of the key ways we do this is through our partnership with Slow Food UK. It is a huge source of pride for us that we are the sole caterer of our kind to enjoy such a partnership with Slow Food UK, and it speaks volumes of our shared commitments to protect our food heritage.
Across our business, we support products from the Ark of Taste, Slow Food’s international ‘at risk’ register of heritage crops and breeds. Using these endangered heritage varieties of British fruits, vegetables, cheeses, and animal breeds across our 52-site strong business has a massive impact.
Down to Earth’s presenter, Mairead Dundas, conducted a fascinating interview of our Group Executive Chef, Barry Nichols and the Director of Slow Food UK, Shane Holland. As they make amply clear, the time to act is now; the only way we can save our food heritage is to put it on the plate.
The episode closes with Barry making a delicious tart with Egremont Russet apples and Blue Vinney cheese, both Ark of Taste products that are packed with history and flavour, but none-the-less severely underused in our country.
Look out for Ark of Taste products across our menus today and join us in bringing our food heritage to life!Read More
Although the weather outside might be cold and dreary, warmer and brighter days are right around the corner! Now is the time to start planning ahead for those outdoor summer parties, so we’ve compiled a list of our venues which we think are perfect for a summer get-together.
Tucked away in the heart of Mayfair, our venue and garden provide a serene atmosphere away from the hustle and bustle of city life. The private garden and terrace are adjacent to Green Park, offering a tranquil setting for drinks receptions and parties.
We’ve got two great packages for the summer, so take full advantage of the long days and celebrate with your guests, click to find out more:
Set in the heart of Southwark and backing on to the famous Tate Modern, The Blue Fin building on Bankside is an easily recognised building thanks to the 2,000 blue aluminium fins that cover the building’s façade and shade the interior.
The Terrace on the 10th floor is an impressive space for drinks receptions and parties, with panoramic views overlooking the London skyline. This stunning venue can accommodate up to 300 people for a standing reception.
Haberdashers’ Hall is the latest addition to the Graysons portfolio and available from 1st April 2020. Set in the heart of St Paul’s, it is one of London’s finest conference and meeting venues.
From the moment you walk through the grand iron gates, your attention is focused on the tranquil courtyard garden, with its beautiful modern water feature, hand-cut lawn and fabulous array of sculptures.
The large, light-filled Orangery’s floor-to-ceiling windows open directly onto the garden, enabling up to 450 guests throughout.
If you’re looking to escape the city, the beautiful wild botanic gardens of Wakehurst could be the perfect backdrop for your summer party. You and your guests could enjoy taking in the views from the carefully groomed croquet lawn as you sip your summer cocktail and enjoy sumptuous food.
You can choose from three individual spaces, the Elizabethan Mansion, the cutting edge, contemporary Millennium Seed Bank or a marquee set in the stunning gardens. Whichever you choose, you can be guaranteed to be inspired by the beauty of the surrounding landscape.
We are only three months in to the new year and Graysons is already in the process of launching five new contracts in 2020. These fantastic new wins come off the back of an equally successful end to 2019, where we launched bespoke services at IMG in Stockley Park and Chiswick Park, the iconic Sotheby’s in Mayfair and QVC in Liverpool.
The outset of 2020 has also seen the retention of Graysons’ contract with Mitsubishi Motors in the UK, as well as the contract extension and mobilisation of the Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists at their freshly developed home in London Bridge, following a strategic departure from their historic Regent’s Park residence.
Another huge development project for 2020 is underway at The Royal Botanic Gardens Kew at Wakehurst. Since launching the contract in 2018, Graysons is investing in partnership with Wakehurst to transform the main restaurant and cafés for visitors.
The key to this success?
Graysons is focused on delivering flexible, bespoke catering offers, which succeed in growing sales year on year. This is achieved with personal involvement from our Managing Director, Tim O’Neill, and Business Development Director, Simona Oproiu, who are intrinsic to contract development from mobilisation and beyond.
Graysons has also successfully positioned itself ahead of the curve on sustainability. We were recently put forward as ‘the most sustainable caterer in the UK’ by Slow Food UK for popular France 24 television series, Down to Earth.
The episode, ‘Food security and seeds: Inviting wild relatives to the table’, culminated in an interview with our Group Executive Chef, Barry Nichols, and Shane Holland, Executive Chairman of Slow Food in the UK. It shone vital light on the importance of protecting our British food heritage and biodiversity.
Simona Oproiu, Business Development Director, highlights:
“Facts speak louder than words: Graysons has enjoyed a 100% retention rate for the last five years as well as sustained organic growth. This is something we are immensely proud of! It is testament to how we do things differently and offer a wholly personal approach to every partnership.”Read More
At Graysons we are closely monitoring the Coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak and its impact, we are working with our venues to ensure we are doing all that is possible to safeguard our employees and the public.
We are following the ever-changing government guidelines, as such our venues are making decisions about whether to stay open on a daily basis.
At present, some of our venues have taken the decision to close until further notice, including:
The British Library
10 Union Street (Home to The Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists)
The Royal Pharmaceutical Society
As this is a rapidly developing situation we will continue to update you as we get further information, in the meantime please drop us an email if you have any further questions at firstname.lastname@example.orgRead More
We are delighted to have seen the reopening of some of our sites in the last few weeks and we have been working hard to ensure that this done safely, in line with Government guidance and with customer and staff safety at the forefront.
To help aid the post COVID-19 recovery we are delighted to be participating in the Government’s Eat Out to Help Out scheme. This offers customers a 50% discount off food and non-alcoholic beverages up to a value of £10.00 per person.
We have currently launched in the following sites:
The British Library
The Royal Over-Seas League
Many of our sites are open to the public so stop by enjoy some delicious food, we look forward to welcoming you back!
All the best and stay safe.Read More
We are excited to announce that we have been invited to exhibit at the BNC show again this year, taking place at the HAC on the 20th of October. As always, the show promises an enjoyable day of networking, learning and good conversations with valuable contacts being made. Yes, it is back, and we are excited to be a part of the show!
Finding the right location for your event can be challenging but we are here to help. Managing the events and venue sales along with the catering services across eight outstanding venues in Farringdon, St Paul’s, Spitalfields, Moorgate, Kings Cross, as well as Sussex you really are spoilt for choice.
We offer a wide selection of event spaces to include meeting rooms, conference and lecture halls, private dining rooms, large scale banqueting halls and outdoor space. Grayson’s Venues can accommodate anything from a private meeting of 2 to a canapé reception of 600 or an outdoor event.
So, pop along to stand 101 at the BNC Show and let us help you select a venue with in a location that meet your needs.Read More
Our Executive Chef Jon has pulled together the perfect cake which embodies everything we love about St Patrick’s Day and it goes great with a pint of Guinness! Give it a go and let us know what you think.
ESPRESSO MARTINI CAKE
250g butter, softened (plus extra for the tin)
4 large eggs
250g golden caster sugar
250g self-raising flour
½ tsp baking powder
1 tsp vanilla extract
6 tbsp coffee liqueur
For the filling
100g butter, softened
100g icing sugar
1 tsp milk
6 tsp chocolate spread
For the icing
1 tsp instant espresso powder
1kg pack fondant icing sugar
Heat oven to 180C/160C fan/gas 4. Butter a 30 x 20cm tin and line with baking parchment. Put the cake ingredients in a bowl except for the liqueur. Whisk until smooth using an electric whisk, then transfer to the tin, smooth out and bake for 30-35mins until a skewer inserted in the centre comes out clean. Leave to cool completely.
Meanwhile, for the filling, whisk the butter, icing sugar and milk together until smooth, then transfer to a piping bag.
When the cake is cold, slice off the top so it’s flat, turn over, trim and cut into neat, approx. 4cm squares (four squares across and seven down). You should have 28. Dip each one briefly in the liqueur and sit dipped-side up. Put a tiny dot of chocolate spread on top of each cake, then pipe a raspberry-sized ball of the buttercream filling on top of each one.
For the icing, mix the espresso powder with 1 tsp water to dissolve, then mix with the fondant icing sugar and enough water to make it a condensed milk consistency. Put the cakes on wire racks set over trays to catch the drips, then coat each one in the icing. The best way to do this is to hold each one over the bowl of icing on a slotted spoon then generously drizzle over the icing with a tablespoon. Remove from the slotted spoon with a cutlery knife and sit on the rack to dry. Decorate with a drizzle of melted chocolate and a chocolate – covered coffee beanRead More