Apr 17th 2019

Destination Guide: Enjoy Luxury in Leeds

Destination Guide: Enjoy Luxury in Leeds

This month our MD, Liz Taylor is speaking on the ‘Future of Event Design’ at the 10th anniversary Conference and Hospitality Show, Leeds First Direct Arena (30 April). If you’re going along, check out some of our favourite spots in this vibrant northern city, and enjoy luxury in Leeds. Here’s our suggestions:

Best hotel: The Queens Hotel

If you’re looking for luxury in Leeds, look no further than the regally named The Queens Hotel in City Square. Built in 1937 this stunning Grade II listed Art Deco venue has an unrivalled position for access to the city. It offers direct access to Leeds train station via a private entrance from the station concourse. If you are travelling by car, the hotel also provides valet parking for a fee. Now part of Q Hotels, there is a dedicated floor for suites where guests can enjoy an exclusive QClub level experience. This includes a private lounge and rooftop terrace.

Best venue for a corporate event: First Direct Arena

First Direct Arena is equipped to host all level of events. From comedy clubs to music mega stars like Cher and Rita Ora; sporting events such as Europe’s Strongest Man to major conferences such as the Conference and Hospitality Show. And let’s face it, if you’re going to invite the event planner industry in for a conference you’ve got to be good, because you’re sure to hear about it if you’re not.

The stand-out feature for large conferences is the venue’s unique ‘super theatre’. This holds 12,000 people with all seats facing the stage. Depending on the size of event, the Arena also offers more intimate spaces for numbers as small as 10. Choose from classroom style facilities, boardrooms and exhibition space.

Best rooftop bar: Angelica

Spring is here. As the weather warms up there is no better way to experience a new city than rising above it to get a full panoramic view. Angelica is a perfect spot to relax and enjoy luxury in Leeds. Located on the sixth floor of the Trinity Leeds Shopping Centre, the rooftop bar has a wraparound planted terrace for unrivalled city views. Every Saturday night the roof bounces the vibes of resident DJ club night Razamataz. The restaurant and terrace are also available for exclusive hire and can host between 20 and 160 guests.

Best lunch spot to wow a client: Arnolds

At Arnold’s the Yorkshire experience is central. This independent restaurant, on Wade Lane in Leeds Arena Quarter, prides itself on serving locally sourced, seasonal produce, showcasing the very best of Yorkshire and British ingredients.

The restaurant is available for full exclusive hire. There is also private dining available for up to 26 guests, with business facilities such as high-speed internet, hidden digital screen and full audio-visual equipment.

Destination Guide: Enjoy Luxury in Leeds

We also couldn’t leave out one of our favourite dining spots; The Ivy Victoria Quarter.  

We love their casual menus with unique interior and impeccable service. Popular with celebrities and social movers, The Ivy never fails to impress.

A ‘hidden gem’: Leventhorpe Vineyard

You don’t have to journey far from Leeds to feel as if you are a world away from the hustle and bustle of the city. Leventhorpe Vineyard in Woodlesford is accessible by car, bus or train. Plus it is open most days for sales. Founded by George and Janet Bowden in 1985 the vineyard was the first to re-introduce commercial wine growing back into Yorkshire. The couple, who are members of the English Wine Producers, produce a range of award-winning wines. White, red and sparkling, both white and pink. All of which are made from grapes grown on site within their five-acre vineyard and produced in their purpose-built winery.

If our destination guide has helped, you should check out our Ten UK Cities Popular With Event Organisers

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 Apr 4th 2019

Tips for planning an Easter picnic brunch

Tips for planning an Easter picnic brunch

Hip hop hurray! Spring is here and what better way to enjoy the warmer weather than with a picnic party. And with Easter providing us with a long bank holiday weekend, it is the ideal time to gather friends and family for a picnic party. Here’s our tips for planning an Easter picnic brunch to get you started:

Decorating the outdoors

Don’t be fooled, planning the perfect picnic party needs as much attention to detail as an indoor brunch. Picnic blankets are fine for little-ones or spontaneous outings. But if you’re inviting guests for an Easter brunch, you need to clean up the garden furniture and make sure you have somewhere comfortable for them to sit. Brightly coloured bean-bags on a large picnic blanket make for a more relaxed seating area, perfect for kids.

When choosing accessories, pastel shades such as pink, baby blue, mint or pale green and lemon are a good choice. They combine well to create a fresh colour scheme for Spring and have a range of floral options to suit. For inexpensive decor, you can also use these colours in Easter bunting and balloons to give the event a festive party feel.

Table’s set

Nothing looks more appealing than a crisp table cloth and fresh flowers on a bright spring morning. It is here where you can really add some personality to your brunch. Try bunny napkin folding for a family or children’s occasion.  For a more adult celebration, add a splash of style with a series of small vases of colourful tulips lining the table.  In between, use pretty holders (such a vintage cake stands) filled with colourful porcelain Easter eggs. 

Or go for one long , low trough to run down the centre of the table.  This can be rustic wood or metal. or made of contemporary Perspex. Create a magical garden inside with a base of turf, then adding flowers to dress.  Of simply fill the trough with a mixture of spring flowers or a display of planted daffodils.  Eclectic tastes? Mix potted daffodils and tulips planted in tea pots, with pretty egg cups filled with painted wooden eggs. The different heights, shapes and textures work well to achieve a ‘no fuss’ look.


Tips for planning an Easter picnic brunch

For chocolate lovers, place a miniature basket of chocolate eggs on each place as a gift. Add a tag, and it does double duty as a name card.  Or use an iced Easter bunny shaped biscuit as the place marker.

Tips for planning an Easter picnic brunch

Plastic and paper plates are fine. But for me, when it comes to cutlery, you should go with the real thing.  Lovely silverware on each place is timeless and elegant.  Add some coloured glassware to reflect your colour theme, and the table will be simple but stylish – the perfect combination for a brunch.

RELATED TOPIC:  UK’s Top 5 Picnic Experiences

Drinks are served

The Easter brunch is so anticipated because it gives us a taste of what’s to come in summer. Nothing says this more than home-made lemonade. For little-ones this is a fantastic opportunity to get them involved, not only in making the thirst-quenching juice, but also in serving it. A lemonade or soft-drink stall also provides an additional space to decorate with your party theme and colours.

For younger children juice cartons decorated as Easter bunnies are sure to bring a smile. While for grown-ups, cucumber water or elderflower gin make good choices for their fresh, delicate flavours.  Just remember to be creative in presentation.  The lemonade can be served in jam jars with a straw. Put the gin in tin cups for a vintage vibe.  Think outside the glass!

Tips for planning an Easter picnic brunch

Al fresco dining:

A picnic isn’t a picnic without the food, so what to serve must be top of the planning list. A successful picnic feels casual and relaxed, but to create that atmosphere takes time and planning so hot food needs to stay hot and cold food keeps cold. Sounds straight forward, but if you don’t plan how you are going to serve your food, things can easily go wrong and the last thing you want is for any guest to go down with food poisoning.

Ham is a brilliant picnic staple because it can be sliced hot or cold and works well with potato and bean salads for a tasty mid-morning brunch. For non-meat eaters Jamie Oliver’s Vegan mushroom, chestnut and cranberry tart makes an excellent alternative. For those who are looking for finger food only, home-made sausage rolls are a favourite filler, and again Jamie Oliver has a good choice alternative in his Vegan Mushroom rolls.  

A brunch is not a brunch without pancakes!  Topped with the kids favourite chocolate and banana, or add smoked bacon and maple syrup for a north American twist.  Fruits and berries with a blob of crème fraiche is also a classic. I love to serve smoked haddock kedgeree and smoked salmon with bagles. Something for everyone.

One other option….try miniature picnic baskets for two!  Filled with chilled goodies to share and a bottle of fizz. Perfect.

Sweet treats:

Our tips for planning an Easter picnic brunch wouldn’t be complete without including the sweeter side of the catering. This is where the real fun starts. Sticking with theme of the season small character cut-outs of rabbits and chicks can be used on fruits such as melon and pineapple to create cute, healthy bite-sized treats for little ones. For grown-ups, berry cups with a mixture of strawberry, raspberry, blueberry and blackberry, look both colourful and sophisticated. An Easter cake is a must but save the chocolate and colourful sweet treats for the Easter Egg hunt, so children can delight in coming back with a picnic-basket full of goodies. And for a stylish treat, opt for coloured macaroons. Best served with a chilled glass of Champagne.

Fun and games

An Easter Egg hunt is still the main event for little-ones, and there are lots of ways to make this fun and decorative. But you may also want to expand the theme with a craft table for egg painting and making Easter baskets. If you want to hire an entertainer, balloonists are a great choice for outdoor Easter fun. And there are plenty of ways to turn the Easter theme onto popular traditional games, such as pin the tail on the Easter Bunny, having an Easter Egg balloon piñata, and a colourful competition for all ages to guess how many jelly beans are in the sweetie jar.

For a more adult occasion, I love music outdoors.  Anything goes. A one man band to a contemporary violin quartet.  Jazz works well alongside acoustic guitarists. Choose what you love and something relaxing – it will suit the brunch setting and outdoor vibe.

Tips for planning an Easter picnic brunch

Follow our tips for planning an Easter picnic brunch for all the family, and your party is sure to be a huge success

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 Apr 2nd 2019

Five top tips for a high-octane motorsports inspired party

Five top tips for a high-octane motorsports inspired party

With the countdown on to the Formula 1 Grand Prix in Monaco at the end of May, it’s time to bring the glamour and thrill of the racetrack to your party plans. Always a winning design, motorsports décor works equally well for a birthday celebration or corporate event. Here is a selection of ideas to get your plans motoring, with our five top tips for a high-octane motorsports inspired party:

Five top tips for a high-octane motorsports inspired party

1. The wow-factor arrival

For the ultimate wow-factor at a motor-racing themed party you can’t beat having a championship race car parked in the driveway. It’s the ultimate selfie magnet and Instagram winner. Some companies hire out Formula 1 show cars that they will fully customise with your chosen branding. Other companies rent out actual championship cars such as the BENETTON FORD B190B driven by three times F1 world champion Nelson Piquet.

Five top tips for a high-octane motorsports inspired party Five top tips for a high-octane motorsports inspired party      

2. A racetrack entrance

Switching the red carpet for a black and white chequered or race-track runner is a great way to set the scene. Add to the atmosphere by playing the new Formula 1 super-hero style theme-tune as a background soundtrack and everyone will be revving-up to get the party started.

Once inside, stick with the chequered theme with flashes of red for the décor. And mix the theme up using tyres for plant arrangements, a chequered dance floor and large trophies as wine coolers.

Five top tips for a high-octane motorsports inspired party

Five top tips for a high-octane motorsports inspired party

3. The thrill of the race

It’s every motor-racing fan’s dream to hit the track in a Formula 1 car. And dreams can come true at your party if you hire a racing car simulator. There are different styles and sizes, some coming as huge outdoor structures with attached awning. Based on real-life Formula 1 race circuits, your guests will get to sit in a race-car seat and take part in simulated race challenges with other guests. Some racing simulators allow for up to 8 guests to race at once. It is a fantastic choice of entertainment for large events and can be used by anyone aged 7 and upwards.

Five top tips for a high-octane motorsports inspired party


Related Topic: Creative Ways to Serve Your Party Catering

4. Scalextric championship

Fourth on our list of five top tips for a high-octane motorsports inspired party, is an entertainment gem. Hiring a Scalextric race track and cars is a great way to get guests interacting. With a wide range of cars to choose you can go for the Formula 1 racers or the old British Rally classics. Depending on your event there are also options to add bespoke branding to both the track and cars. Up to 8 cars can run simultaneously.
In addition, if you want to up the racing stakes, why not add a fun prize and hire a winners’ podium with chequered backdrop. Outside the racing, this can also be used as a selfie opportunity. And to add to the fun, provide guests with a choice of motor-racing hero card-masks as part of a selfie-prop kit, to liven-up the pics. Social media gold!

5. Refuelling station

The wonderful thing about a Grand Prix theme is there are so many brilliant opportunities to build the idea into all aspects of the party to make for a high-octane wheelie good night. So, your buffet tables or food stations become pit stops and refuelling stations. Drinks can be served from petrol-pump style dispensers. Dishes served from racing helmet shaped food stations. Guests handed steering-wheel designed plates. For quirky food choices we love oil-change, cola jellies and traffic-light fruit skewers. And for the full Formula 1 effect, don’t forget the champagne!


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 Mar 27th 2019

From catwalk to party inspiration from London Fashion week

From catwalk to party inspiration from London Fashion week

It’s not just High Street retailers who look at inspiration from London Fashion week for pointers towards the next big thing. As event organisers we also have our eyes on the catwalk. This way our work stays fresh, reflecting the latest stylish ideas and trends. Here’s some of the trends to expect to go from catwalk to party in 2019, with our guide to the best party inspiration from London Fashion week:

Drama and imagination

There is always a hint of drama to the catwalk but this year there was a definite move towards show-stopping statement dresses. The models didn’t wear these, rather it was the dresses that wore the models. Some of the voluminous taffeta and tulle creations on display hint towards an Elizabethan extravagance. While at the same time, stretching into the realm of fantasy. Such dramatic statements were seen in the beauty look too. Large painted tears, eye-lashes and a move away from the natural. On the party scene to go over-sized. Expect drama and fantasy to become key concepts, particularly in impactful décor and imaginative plays with scale and shape.


Bold colours

Bright passionate red was the colour of choice for many designers this season. Expect flashes of flame red to accentuate and add vibrancy to party décor. And this is not just the red carpet. We’ll see red in flower choices, such as the striking and exotic anthurium andraeanum, sometimes called the tail or flamingo flower. Along with more use of tropical flowers we can expect to see a more colourful, tropical vibe coming through. These tropical influences were also seen on the catwalk in the yellows, greens, pinks and purples of Molly Goddard’s colourful tulle designs.


Vintage florals

The vintage party inspiration from London Fashion week will be big. The floral look has been around for a while now and is already well and truly absorbed into all aspects of party planning. Particularly popular for tea parties, it is a trend that can influence events at all levels. From table décor, to food, lighting to music. It has both a feminine and a retro feel. The current catwalk trend for florals hint towards a chintz feel in décor that would stretch beyond inspiration of afternoon soirees to pretty, period balls.

party inspiration from London Fashion week
Back to the 1980s

The appeal of the 1980s is still strong. We’ve seen this on the cat walk with the plume skirt. You can expect this to come through to events in the type of entertainment being requested.  Also in a mash-up of styles for themes and décor. In many ways it was the decade that taste forgot, but it as also the decade where fashions were dictated by musical tastes. For an event organiser this give a wealth of ideas to mine. Think too about returning to popular TV programmes, board games and the earliest computer games for inspiration.

party inspiration from London Fashion week


The sight of a plume of colourful feathers always screams look at me. There were plenty of these moments on the London catwalk last month. Feathers, whether real or created from taffeta and wool, are fantastic choices to add a fun, attention-grabbing glamour to an event. See them used as table décor and archway entrances. As well as inspiring the more elegant bird-cage themed bars, food stations, and table planners.

party inspiration from London Fashion week
Glitter and glamour

Lastly, for real party inspiration from London Fashion week – think two words that are made to go with party. Glitz and glamour. Last month the London catwalk had both aplenty. Showing a range of faux furs covering shimmering, sparkly and crystal embellished gowns. Expect to see this sense of glamour to influence a move to Hollywood-style cocktail parties, crystal table wear, sparkling entrances, and glittering lights.

party inspiration from London Fashion week

For more party inspiration, take a look at this Penny Dreadful Party!

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 Mar 19th 2019

Birthday celebrations at The Ivy

Birthday celebrations at The Ivy

For the team at TLC, there doesn’t need to be an excuse to gather friends together.  And for Liz Taylor, a recent birthday was all the reason that she needed to plan birthday celebrations at The Ivy.  As the leading party planner in Manchester, TLC’s team of event organisers had a raft of creative and fun ideas for the day…but this was purely a personal occasion, and all about our MD, Liz.  And so here’s how she chose to celebrate.

The private Geisha Room at The Ivy, Spinningfields was the gorgeous venue.  22 of Liz’s friends enjoyed a Champagne lunch and entertainment.  They laughed. They danced. And all agreed – every Sunday should be this good!  Here’s a peek at Liz’s birthday celebrations at The Ivy:

Birthday celebrations at The Ivy Birthday celebrations at The Ivy Birthday celebrations at The Ivy Birthday celebrations at The Ivy Birthday celebrations at The Ivy Birthday celebrations at The Ivy Birthday celebrations at The Ivy  Birthday celebrations at The Ivy Birthday celebrations at The Ivy Birthday celebrations at The Ivy Birthday celebrations at The Ivy Birthday celebrations at The Ivy Birthday celebrations at The Ivy Birthday celebrations at The Ivy  Birthday celebrations at The Ivy Birthday celebrations at The Ivy

Happy Birthday Liz!

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 Mar 19th 2019

Raising £250, 000 for Red Sea Pedestrians and Derian House

TLC was proud to have been involved in planning a very special fundraising event for our friends at the Red Sea Pedestrians . 

They dined. They danced. They raised £250, 000……..

Red Sea Pedestrians and Derian House  Red Sea Pedestrians and Derian House Red Sea Pedestrians and Derian House Red Sea Pedestrians and Derian House  Red Sea Pedestrians and Derian House Red Sea Pedestrians and Derian House

Red Sea Pedestrians and Derian House  Red Sea Pedestrians and Derian House Red Sea Pedestrians and Derian House Red Sea Pedestrians and Derian House


“Generous supporters raised more than £250,000 for charity at a glittering fundraising extravaganza this weekend.

People from across the North West turned out in force to attend the prestigious Red Sea Pedestrians’ 11th annual Spring Ball, this year in aid of Derian House Children’s Hospice.

A packed and exciting evening took place with entertainment provided by TLC as well as an auction, containing a whole host of prizes including incredible donations made by local artist Jai Sol, a new Fiat 500 plus three elephants painted by local artists especially for the ball.

Highlights of the night included the “stand for a grand” section of the auction, in which generous donors stood up to pledge an amazing total of £61,000 for “Tallulah”, a 6ft elephant sculpture decorated by the children at Derian House. Tallulah will now be donated back to Derian where she will take pride of place in the hospice building.

The black tie event hoped to raise enough money to pay for a holiday lodge that the charity would use to give its families a free week’s holiday at Ribby Hall Holiday Village in Wrea Green. The grand total, coming in at more than twice its target, will now also go towards a full cutting-edge refurbishment of the hospice building.

“I’m overwhelmed by the generosity shown by the attendees once again,” said Antony Wagman, chair of trustees at Red Sea Pedestrians.

“Each year, we look to support a different charity at our ball, when it was discussed about Derian House, I honestly couldn’t think of a more worthy cause.

“The charity serves children and young people of the North West providing vital care whilst creating unforgettable memories. It’s a tremendous charity and one I am proud we could assist.””

Red Sea Pedestrians and Derian House Red Sea Pedestrians and Derian House

Red Sea Pedestrians and Derian House Red Sea Pedestrians and Derian House

More details at: DERIAN HOUSE

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 Mar 13th 2019

Top garden venues in the north west

Top garden venues in the north west

The first daffodils of Spring are always a hint of good weather to come. If, like us, you’re already dreaming of alfresco summer parties, these five wonderful top garden venues in the north west are the perfect place for a summer event.

Tatton Park

TLC has organised so many amazing garden events at Tatton Park over the years, and with good reason. The estate is home to one of the most beautiful gardens in the whole of England. Its 1000 acres include parkland home to wild deer, beautiful meres and ornamental gardens. Throughout the year the venue hosts more than 100 different events from the RHS Flower Show to Classic Car conventions. It is also a fabulous setting for outdoor concerts. It provides plenty of space for guests to set up gazebos and picnic tables, even large marquees by the lake.

The Neo-Classical Mansion at its centre is also available for hire and can be arranged to accommodate dining from a small intimate dinner to a gala reception for 350 guests.

Top garden venues in the north west top garden venues in the north west top garden venues in the north west

Arley Hall and Gardens

The burst of colour in Arley Gardens is nothing short of breath-taking. In 2018 the gardening team was awarding a gold medal at RHS Tatton for ‘The Flowers of Arley’. This gave a taste of the historical double herbaceous borders at Arley and how they can be created in your own back garden. The idea of being in your own back garden is part of the charm of these intimately designed spaces. What an amazing back garden it is.

Surrounding a grand Victorian Country House, built in Elizabethan style. On hiring the hall and gardens for an event it in effect becomes your garden, always hired exclusively as home for you and your guests.

The Hall and Gardens are also available for a range of events. For those seeking a venue to plan an outdoor summer wedding, we can recommend ‘The Alcove’. It’s a wedding photographer’s dream situated at the end of a double herbaceous border and licensed for civil ceremonies. If the unpredictable UK weather is giving you doubts don’t be put off. Should the sun fail to shine on your big day, the staff will quickly and smoothly move the celebration indoors to Arley Hall at a moment’s notice.

top garden venues in the north west

Related Topic: Outdoor Party Planning Tips

Sefton Park Palm House

Compared to the grounds of grand stately homes, our choice of Sefton Park may seem a little out of place. But don’t be deceived by Liverpool’s botanical gardens. The Victorian Grade II listed Glass House may look compact, but the space can accommodate parties much bigger than you might first imagine. For this indoor garden can be transformed into a party venue. It accommodates 220 seated or 400 attending a drinks reception among the exotic palms, orchids and vibrant bromeliads.

Marquees can be added too if you want more space or to have a more outdoor focus on the Park surroundings. This striking venue has hosted corporate events, circus, fiestas, live music gigs and in 2018 was the winner of Hitched’s Best City Wedding Venue.

Gisburne Park Estate

There are private parties and then there are parties on Gisburne Park Estate. This family-run estate, nestled within 1000 acres of Ribble Valley countryside, is available for exclusive hire. The estate houses a number of modern and well-equipped cottages which can accommodate 200 guests. This includes a Bridal Cottage, Riverside House, which sleeps six.

If you are looking to organise a large private event in a garden setting, the estate offers use of a purpose-built, solid marquee and tipi structures. They are all beautifully lit with festoon and spot-lighting. Hire of the venue also includes use of the warming outdoor fire-pits, straw-bale seating and canopy umbrellas and blankets. For that reason it crerates a fairy-tale setting within this spectacular country landscape. This combines a forest and mass expanses of lawned gardens, includes stunning picture opportunities by the historic bridge, set over the tributary where Stock Beck meets the River Ribble.

top garden venues in the north west

Colshaw Hall

Last in our collection of the top garden venues in the north west is another beautiful private country estate available for exclusive hire. Colshaw Hall is certainly one of the most picturesque settings for a garden event in the north west. The Grade II listed halls comes with 300 acres of land, partly sectioned into a number of more intimate manicured gardens. These include its Japanese Garden featuring a miniature lake over which stands a horse-shoe bridge – an ideal backdrop for romantic photographs. There are other intimate photo opportunities in the stunning Magnolia Garden to the rear of The Hall. The formal walled gardens, outside the Hall’s Peel suite, are another good option for alfresco drinks and canapés.

Finally, built in 1903, the historic hall can hold up to 180 guests, with overnight accommodation for 36 on site. It is reached via a long private drive with secure gates. Or, if you really want to arrive in style you can always use the helicopter pad.

top garden venues in the north west

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 Mar 8th 2019

Five Top UK Sporting Venues For Hire

Five Top UK Sporting Venues For Hire

While all eyes are on the world’s rugby teams to see who will take home the Six Nations trophy, at TLC we are watching the action with one eye on a special venue for our next event. Sporting venues aren’t always the first places you think of when looking to book a large event. But not only are they spacious and used to dealing with crowds, they can give a unique insight into the places already dear to guests’ hearts. First of all, its worth saying that we have some excellent sports venues in Manchester. Emirates Old Trafford and The Point. Manchester United and Manchester City FC. To name but a few. But looking a bit further afield, the choice is wide and interesting. Here’s our pick of the five top UK sporting venues for hire:

five top uk sporting venues

Five Top UK Sporting Venues For Hire

Twickenham Cellar

As Rugby Union takes centre stage this month, it felt right to include Twickenham Stadium among our list of special sporting venues. While its stadium is recognised around the world, less well-known is its rustic cellar available for intimate parties or business dinners. Open-brickwork,. Stone-flooring. Candelabras. All add to the atmosphere of this hidden vault. The exclusive space holds up to 14 seated guests and the focus is on luxury service with a fine-dining experience. Guests are served champagne on arrival and executive head chef, Thomas Rhodes creates a full seven course tasting menu based on seasonal ingredients and client’s tastes. If booking for an important client dinner, the cellar allows for the integration of conference technology with a plasma screen and wifi available.

Aintree Racecourse

Home of the world famous Randox Health Grand National. Aintree Racecourse is a unique venue steeped in history and drama. In addition to hospitality at racing events, the venue also houses a variety of exhibition spaces and suites available for hire. They cater for anything from intimate private dining for up to 40 guests, to dinner dances for 1000 or conferences for 4500 delegates. At TLC we particularly like this venue. It offers easy accessibility by motorway and public transport from Liverpool city centre. For event organisers it is also a fabulous space for themed events, as many of its rooms can be stripped down to a blank canvas.

Five Top UK Sporting Venues For Hire


Related Topic: The top 10 cities in UK  for event planners

Durham Cricket Club

The Emirates Riverside. Home to Durham Cricket Club. It is widely regarded as one of the most attractive cricketing venues in the country. The expansive four-acre pitch has been transformed into a festival area for outdoor concerts, family fun days and fayres. The space has a crowd capacity of 20,000. Inside there are several spacious hospitality suites available for hire for exhibitions, products launches, conferences and celebrations. We particularly like the Riverside Suite. It boasts a 160-foot, glass-fronted panoramic view of one of the most picturesque settings in English sport. Recently refurbished, this grand space which seats up to 250 guests. It also overlooks the evergreens across the County Durham riverside shadowed by the city’s magnificent 18th century castle.

Yellowave Beach Sports

Number four on our list of the five top UK sporting venues for hire is an un usual one. For a summer event we love the casual venues. For that reason suggest the laid-back vibe of volley-ball club, Yellowave Beach Sports, on Brighton beach. The indoor space offers a large blank canvas for event organisers with floor-to-ceiling windows giving uninterrupted views over the English Channel. The clubhouse can be hired for exclusive use and has conference facilities for business meetings. The venue also offers team-building packages with activities for groups of between 10-150 people. It can be booked alongside a beach BBQ. It is also a great venue for children’s summer parties. This can come with use of a private volleyball court with the services of a professional volley-ball coach, and a range of food options after the sporting activity is over.

The Royal Yacht Britannia

We know perhaps we’re stretching the sporting link here. Yet sticking with the water theme we couldn’t resist including what has been rated Scotland’s best visitor attraction for the last 12 years. For over 40 years the Royal Yacht Britannia served the Royal Family. She sailed over one million miles to become the most famous ship in the world. Now permanently berthed in Leith, just two miles outside Edinburgh city centre, this unique venue is available year-round for evening hire. Boasting the same standard of service provided when in Royal service. This luxurious five-star venue can host dinner for 196 guests or drinks receptions for up to 450 people. Therefore one to consider for a special event.

Five Top UK Sporting Venues For Hire


Our collection of the five top UK sporting venues for hire is just a snapshot of the incredible sports venues in the UK…so explore!

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 Mar 4th 2019

TLC Guide to Paris

TLC Guide to Paris

The city of romance, fine Champagnes, unique venues and a thriving, eclectic party scene! As you can imagine, Paris is a destination that draws the world’s best events and of course, their planners. TLC is no exception. Having planned business events at Le Louvre, 21st birthday lunches at the Eifel Tower and incentive weekends across this magnificent city, we a loving everything Paris offers. Which is why TLC’s event planner Jess Randall shares her best business traveller tips, and a hidden gem or two, for the French capital. Here’s her exclusive TLC Guide to Paris:

TLC Guide to Paris

Best airline: Air France

Getting to Paris for a business meeting from Manchester, where TLC is based, is so easy. There are several direct flights daily from Manchester International Airport to Paris Charles de Gaulle, taking approximately 1.30 hours. For that reason, and the convenience of its Business Flex tickets which allow you to take an earlier of later flight than planned if there is room on the plane, I opt for Air France. This cuts out the usual stress of getting caught up in city traffic. Plus it allows you to stay cool if an important meeting looks like it could over-run. In addition, the frequency of the flights also makes it possible to get there and back in a day. Although, when the business trip is to Paris, who wouldn’t opt for an overnight stay?

Best hotel: Four Seasons Hotel George V, Paris

If you want to experience all the luxury, heritage and elegance Paris has to offer in a convenient, technically sophisticated space, you can’t beat this stunning 1928 art-deco hotel. Its in a prime location, just off the Champs-Elysees with some suites overlooking the Eiffel Tower. The hotel is the perfect spot for getting around the city. And after a busy day of meetings it is a treat to know you can come back and unwind in the hotel’s spa with it’s huge 17-metre (56-foot) pool. It’s fine dining restaurant, Le Cinq by Christian Le Squer, boasts three Michelin stars and is a must for those looking to enjoy sophisticated French cuisine.

Best venue for a corporate event: Palais des Congrès

A short distance from the traditional splendour of the Four Seasons Hotel is the striking modern architecture of the Palais des Congrès. Its quirky steel exterior and vibrantly coloured interior reminds me of the Salford’s Lowry Theatre. Inside it has everything you might want for any kind of corporate event with a total area of 32,000 m², including 19,000m² of exhibition surface area, four amphitheatres, 20 break-out rooms and 85 meeting rooms. Another huge plus of this venue is its central location, making it easy for guests to access by public transport.

Best rooftop bar: Le Rooftop

Was always going to appear in the TLC Guide to Paris – it’s a favourite! Located in the trendy St-Germain district of Paris, Le Rooftop of hotel Montana is one of my favourite spots to entertain clients at any time of day, but particularly at night when the views of Notre Dame from the comfort of the heated terrace are breath-taking. The hotel describes the bar as an ‘exclusive cocoon’ and when sinking into one of its black leather armchairs it certainly feels that way.  For that reason – this is top of my visit list.

Best lunch spot to wow a client: Restaurant Le Gabriel at La Reserve

Almost everything about a trip to Le Gabriel has the wow factor. From the grand entrance with its prestigious Napoleon III style interior design created by Jacques Garcia, o its beautifully crafted cuisine. Chef Jérôme Banctel’s passion for his work comes through in the dishes, which are served like a work of art. To give you an idea of how his cooking has created a talking point even within Paris’s competitive gourmet culture, the restaurant was awarded two Michelin stars after just one year in operation.


Best restaurant for a business dinner: Le Fouquets

Any restaurant that has been around since 1899 has got to have something going for it. The central location, at the corner of avenue George V and the Champs-Elysées, is a huge winner. But it is its strong heritage as a haunt for the rich and famous, gives it a vibrant atmosphere that keeps people coming back. The brasserie was fully renovated in 2017 and on Thursday evenings hosts a popular after work party from 7pm.

A ‘hidden gem’: Relais Christine

If you want to get away from the hustle and bustle of the city, you don’t need to look too far. Importnantly, this boutique hotel in the heart of Saint-Germain-des-Prés, left bank, is only a heartbeat away from the action but once you’re inside the grounds you could be a world away. Formerly a 16th-century private mansion, it has the feel of a grand, sophisticated home. And behind the house is the real treat – a private flowered garden and paved courtyard.


What interesting fact could you tell a client?

It’s quite likely you’ll come across a film crew while in Paris. There are on average 10 film shoots on the street every day. As well as being an amazing location another attraction for film makers is that it is free to film on the streets. If your film crew involves more that 10 people then authorization is needed, but this is free too. The only exceptions are where filming takes place in a garden, a stadium, a pool, a market or a museum that depends on the mayor of Paris. In these instances the production pays a fee to the city.

Jess Randall is one of TLC’s team of corporate and private event planners, organising over a hundred events a year.  If you have enjoyed our TLC Guide to Paris, check out our destination guide to enjoying the finest palace hotels in India.

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 Feb 11th 2019

Five Romantic Cocktails for Valentine’s Celebrations

Five Romantic Cocktails

From flirty fun to lasting passion, we’ve got five of the best love potion cocktails to get your Valentine in the mood for love. Five romantic cocktails to win over that special person….

Amour Rouge

First of our five romantic cocktails, is the Amour Rouge. The ruby red allure of this cocktail from the team at Grey Goose Vodka is both striking and elegant. Served in a chilled martini glass with a cluster of red-currants and a garnish of lemon zest, it has fruity tang that is sure to tickles the taste buds.



25 ml Pineau des Charentes®

10 ml Crème de Cassis®

2 tsp lemon juice

1 dash Angostura® Aromatic Bitters

1 small cluster redcurrants

Lemon twist


Fill a cocktail shaker with ice and add all ingredients.

Shake well and strain into a chilled martini glass.

Garnish with lemon zest and a cluster of redcurrants.

Pink Grapefruit & Cucumber Collins

There is nothing prettier than a pink cocktail and no better time to serve one than Valentine’s Day. We love this signature mix from Hertfordshire’s Chase Distillery. Delicately coloured and flavoured with natural ingredients – pink grapefruit and cucumber – it is long, refreshing drink with a subtle but definite air of romance.


50ml Chase Pink Grapefruit & Pomelo Gin

Splash Fresh Pink Grapefruit juice

2 slices of cucumber diced and muddled

12.5ml Sugar Syrup

12.5ml Fresh lemon Juice

Soda top


Add all ingredients except the soda to a shaker and shake with cubed ice.

Double strain into tall glass over cubed ice.

Garnish with fresh cucumber ribbon and pink grapefruit slice.

Signed & Sealed

For a long-term love the name of this cocktail hints towards commitment, and is a must in our collection of five romantic cocktails. But familiarity doesn’t mean there is any less need for romance and this little cocktail is bursting with it. Aside from the luxurious Reserva Exclusiva Diplomatico rum on which it is based, this cocktail gains an added infusion of red-hot passion from a natural strawberry aphrodisiac, and a floral uplift from dashes of lavender bitters.


40 ml Reserva Exclusiva

30 ml Strawberry infused Cocchi Rosa

3 dashes of Lavender bitters


Add all to a stirring glass, fill with ice, stir and strain

Serve in a coup glass and garnish with a dehydrated slice of strawberry

Ruban Resplendent

Glenmorangie has come up with another elegant choice for those who enjoy a whiskey-based cocktail. This sophisticated choice is easy to create and brimming with warm flavours to heat the heart. The distillery’s award-winning Quinta Ruban whiskey, which this cocktail uses as a base, is a dark, intense spirit which spends 10 years maturing in white oak casks before being transferred for extra maturation into ruby port pipes. It’s aroma of dark mint chocolate is the perfect companion for a romantic evening, and a hint of pepper and nutmeg provide an added spice.


50ml Glenmorangie Quinta Ruban

15ml sweet vermouth

10ml white crème de cacao

Garnish: orange twist


Pour the ingredients into a mixing glass, fill with cubed ice and stir until well chilled and slightly diluted.

Double strain into a glass, and serve with an orange twist, straight up.

Boodles Royale

And last on our list of five romantic cocktails .. well. nothing says celebration and romance like champagne. Here at TLC we love a straight-up pink champagne, but if you are going to add some fizz to your cocktail, we love this simple recipe from British Gin distiller’s Boodles, which combines the subtle herbal flavours and berry colouring of its Mulberry Gin liqueur with the sparkling pizazz of champagne.


1 oz Boodles Mulberry Gin

3 oz Champagne

Lemon Twist, garnish


Combine ingredients in a champagne flute and garnish.

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