It's spring time in London and for the second year running, the undisputed floral queen, Karen Tran, brings her floral masterclass to another iconic London venue. The most anticipated gala event in the UK events industry calendar, it was held on a perfect spring day. These beautiful photos from Stuart Wood Photography and video from Perfect Moment Films perfectly capture the opulence and fun of the incredible event held at the iconic Savoy Hotel in London.
Jane Riddell of Planned to Perfection was approached by Sasha Cullen and Penny Clements of Savoy Weddings to plan and execute the event, and she was supported by Leanne Roberts-Hewitt of WildAbout and Elizabeth Solaru of Elizabeth's Cake Emporium.
The Savoy is the only luxury hotel on the River Thames, perfectly placed in the heart of London, one of the world’s most exciting cities. At the forefront of the luxury hotel scene for almost 130 years, The Savoy has a reputation for the excellence of its unrivalled hospitality. Overlooking Embarkment Gardens and the Thames. The River Room with its light and airy ambience, chandeliers and grandeur was ideal to showcase the amazing florals created over three days by Karen Tran and her students. The room has the distinction of having the royal seal of approval, being the room where HM Queen Elizabeth was first seen in public with Prince Phillip when they both attended a wedding there in 1946.
Opulence was the keyword for this masterclass. The floral palette consisted of an abundance of the most incredible statement florals in classic whites, creams and blush. Karen ably assisted by the incredible Wild About and students who came from all over the world, transformed the River Room and painted an unforgettable floral landscape using thousands of roses, hydrangeas, tulips, peonies and phaelanopsis orchids supplied by Rosa Prima Roses and Piet Van Kampen of G Fresh. The tablescape featured gold mirrored topped tables with Karen's signature tall cascading arrangements on specially created gold pedestals and floral runners across the length of the tables that cascaded onto the floor.
The tables were dressed with tall gold candlesticks which complimented the china, cutlery and crystal from Whitehouse Crockery. Linen from Just for Linen and menus and specially scented paper roses from Ananya Cards completed the look.
The floral tunnel and archway of beauty that framed the middle of the River Room stood at an impressive 14 feet tall and 18 feet wide and was a sight to behold. Decorated with a flower carpet made up of thousands of roses, hydrangeas and orchids, there were also similarly decorated flower walls and even the pillars were dressed with incredible flower cascades.
Luminaire events provided all the event production and support and such was their attention to detail, they even created a special gold floral motif for their gorgeous dance floor. the gold and white chairs were from Event Decor Hire.
Elizabeth Solaru of Elizabeth's Cake Emporium created an impressive cake in gold and white for the event. 8 tiers in total, it stood over 6 feet tall and featured two petal shaped gold base tiers. She painstakingly hand crafted the white sugar rose appliques, rose bas relief and sugar flowers in blush, cream and white that adorned the cake. The specially created pedestal featured an asymmetrical floral swag of pink roses to finish the look.
The Gala Dinner
Once the guests had been assembled, the doors of the River Rooms were opened to reveal Karen's floral wonderland. There were audible gasps as guests took in the beauty of the room .
The guests included a mix of the best event planners, editors of bridal magazines, bloggers, and some of the best influencers in the UK. They sipped on specially created floral inspired cocktails, the finest Champagne and canapes from the very talented chefs at The Savoy.
During the cocktail hour guests were entertained by performances by Dream Performance and ballerinas from Sophie Adams Ballet Company. Karen was warmly applauded and cheered as she made her entrance into the room wearing Galia Lahav from Brown's Bride and jewellery from Boodles. The guests were then welcomed and all the partners thanked in speeches by Jane and Karen.
The 5 course meal started with beautifully presented English oysters and black pearls of the most delicious caviar.
The next course consisted of seasonal English white asparagus with wild garlic hollandaise and Iberico Ham. A particular favourite was the creamiest saffron risotto served with edible spring flowers. The main course was a lotus flower wrapped steamed halibut with park choi, vegetables and a sesame dark soya source. Dessert was a very pretty and delicious mix of strawberries and cream, vanilla pana cotta, elderflower and buttermilk ice cream presented on a floral bed of dry ice.
During the course of the dinner, guests were completely serenaded and captivated by The Function Band who delivered world class entertainment. They had guests on their feet and up on podiums all night with many commenting on what an unforgettable night it was.
Jane of Planned for perfection who meticulously planned the event, said "Thank you to a wonderful team of outstanding suppliers for helping us ensure that the gala was perfectly planned and to Karen and her team for the magnificent floral designs. The masterclass was a huge success and the gala exceeded all expectations. The memories will live in our hearts forever".