Can you imagine being a ski fanatic and walking into your Bar Mitzvah venue to find that the whole space had been transformed into your very own ski chalet?! Well, this is what happened to Max. This avid skier who, at the first chance he gets, will jet off to Zermatt to whizz down the Matterhorn was blown away when the JustSeventy team produced his very own ‘Chez Max’ experience.
Max’s parents came to JustSeventy a year prior to this special occasion and they had already booked both a premium caterer and venue but needed assistance with production, design and theming.
The whole family share a passion for the mountains and all things ski related; therefore it was a very natural decision to incorporate these interests into their first child’s Bar Mitzvah.
The event had slightly fewer than 150 guests which led to The Berkeley’s newly-renovated ballroom being perfect for the occasion. The brief stressed the importance on fun and inclusivity for all, but most importantly a complete surprise for Max.
When the guests arrived and enjoyed refreshments during the drinks reception, the ballroom doors were closed and the surprise had yet to be revealed. Dotted around the room, there were only slight indications to the theme that would follow. The usual escort cards were replaced with ski passes on lanyards which guests wore round their necks, getting into the spirit of the evening; and the table plan was based on a Zermatt piste map.
Despite the little details which suggested a ski theme, the moment that the ballroom doors opened, the guests’ faces turned to pure amazement and disbelief that such a transformation could take place within a London hotel ballroom.
Eyes wide and taking it all in, the guests could never have dreamed that building this impressive and authentic chalet had commenced at the crack of dawn that very day. With months of designs, discussions and deliberations over which exact cut of wood to be used for the panels, the JustSeventy team had created a masterpiece! This innovative and challenging design also saw the clever inclusion of a wide range of props throughout the space, such as vintage skis, framed photos of the family, faux fur and blankets.
The level of detail needed to create such an immersive event experience was sustained by all the staff dressed accordingly. To add to the authentic après-ski atmosphere, all the staff had matching t-shirts, with the bartenders even sporting beanie hats and goggles!
All of the centrepieces and table designs were particularly elegant and matched the theme, ensuring the room did not look ‘gimmicky’ in any way. The inclusion of hessian, ferns and pinecones along with herbs and other floral items drew many admiring comments. And the abundance of candles helped create the soft glow and twinkle expected within a winter chalet.
Once in the room and the initial shock had worn off, the guests found their tables which were all named after Zermatt ski runs. The iconic Matterhorn, a continual reference to Zermatt, was displayed proudly on the large screen to look like a window out of ‘Chez Max’, overlooking the village. Starting the event with the daytime mountain view and gradually watching it change to twilight took all of the guests on a journey, as well as showing them the natural transition which the family always enjoy experiencing.
The evening was a whirlwind of winter fun filled with a delicious dinner, an excellent DJ with lively musicians and other exciting entertainment for all to enjoy. At one point, while the violinist stole the show for the adults, the children were excited to wear their own ‘Chez Max’ beanie hats and t-shirts. Everyone was enjoying their own experience within this cosy and fun chalet with laughter to be heard from the top of the mountain!
The attention to detail and creative research was essential in producing such a breath-taking and immersive transformation of this London hotel. The family’s intention was to create a warm, intimate and authentic chalet environment to house an electric après-ski party for Max’s milestone moment, and the JustSeventy team did not disappoint, as was borne out by the ecstatic approval of the family and guests.