After Dark: Party folk - BDO heads to the docks for its staff bash

What was the party? This was a summer party for global accountancy firm BDO Stoy Hayward, held at the Tobacco Dock in Wapping for the company's 2,500 London-based employees.

How was the party themed? The event was designed in a contemporary circus style. After entering through Tobacco Dock's iron gates, guests enjoyed an alfresco champagne reception looking across the docks before heading indoors to the first of the building's glassed-off areas, which had been transformed into a red Pimms bar. Opposite this, another area was decked out with purple and yellow drapes and and contained mime artistes. Juxtaposed to this, another entertainment area encompassed both floors, with white drapes connected to a truss above a ground floor stage that featured circus performers.

Further along the top floor, the other glassed areas held food stations that were themed to reflect the Oriental, European and Creole menus. The final room on the top floor was themed as an ice-style area, and was transformed using white drapes, white furniture and a cyclical bar that housed bright blue lights. Downstairs, a black and white chequered dancefloor was installed with its own DJ booth.

As a special touch, a gigantic plasma screen was hung at the top of the stairwell, showing live pictures from the dancefloor. On the ground level, guests also enjoyed a low-lit chill-out room that housed its own bar, or they could play air hockey, pool or pinball in the two games rooms. For something a little more sophisticated there were also two casino rooms, plus a jazz room with a live band.

Who was behind the party? Agency Fortesqueue's event manager Ed Parsons was responsible for creating the party and he brought on board draping expert Fluid, lighting and sound specialist Robert Lawrence, caterer Create, entertainment agencies Karma Karma and Prima Artists, Funtime Leisure, photographer Take That, balloon specialist Airstar, and The Original Chocolate Fountain Company.

What were the highlights? Most impressive was the transformation of a large, blank canvas venue into a cool space that catered for various tastes and kept all 2,500 guests entertained. Equally impressive was the creative use of draping and food that generated the vibe and feel of the culturally themed areas.


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