By Joseph Kent.
Glitz and 1940s glamour came to Bournemouth on Friday, as the Diamond Vintage Ball drew in a generous and fashionable guest list.
Held in the De Vere suite of the Royal Bath Hotel, the evening was packed with entertainment and quality cuisine, with all proceeds going to the Lewis-Manning Hospice in Parkstone.
Ladies adorned long, silky, sheen dresses, while the men wore sharp two-piece suits with bow ties.
As guests arrived from 7:30pm, they were treated to canapés, Champagne and the beautiful harmonies of the Panini Sisters, a vintage vocal trio complete with sassy choreography.
Afterwards, guests were then seated for a full three-course meal, created by the Royal Bath Hotel’s head chef, David Whiffen, which included potted shrimp with lemon butter for starter and a posh pie n mash for the main course.
Hosting the Diamond Vintage Ball was radio veteran Steve Power of Wave105 FM. He told BHbeat: “It has been a lovely evening, and obviously any event such as this has one main aim – tonight that’s to raise funds for the Lewis-Manning Hospice.
It’s lovely to have a vintage theme to the evening as well. Overall, a great evening had by all, and hopefully a lot of money raised.”
After dinner, all guests took part in a balloon-popping raffle, in which the prize was an all-inclusive, seven-night, sunny holiday to a choice of locations, courtesy of Apple Conservatories.
Yet in spite of the prize’s grandeur, the winning couple generously donated the holiday into the subsequent live auction, and was eventually sold for £1,100.
Other prizes on offer during the auction included a diamond pendant from Charles Fox jewellers, the ball’s primary sponsor, which was modelled during the evening by event organiser Nasreen El-Mariesh. It was sold for £1,000.
However, the top prize on offer that night was a Bugatti Veyron experience – a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to drive the world’s fastest production car. The winning bidder would have the chance to have two runs with a professional instructor, reaching top speeds of beyond 250mph.
The prize stood at a bid of £2,400, but after a sudden silence, a winning bid came in at £3,000.
Also during the evening was an enthusiastic performance by the Swing Dance Company, as well as a set from Laura B and the Moonlighters, a 1940s/50s swing and rhythm & blues band, to which guests got up from their seats and jived on the dancefloor.
On the De Vere suite balcony was a hand-carved vodka luge, in addition to a vintage photo booth from Adrian Lambert photography.
Adrian, who wore bow tie and trilby in matching crimson, said: “We set up lights and a backdrop, but using modern computers and modern cameras, we’ve printed pictures of guests on-site in their paraphernalia.
“The evening has been amazing – lovely guests and lots of colourful outfits.”
At the end of the night, Caron Khan, event partner to Nasreem, said: “The energy has been fantastic and everyone has embraced the vintage theme. We’ve had some fabulous vintage costumes, amazing entertainment, and the music has been superb.
“The atmosphere is absolutely buzzing, and the guests are having an absolute ball.”
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