THE WOLSELEY ▪️ LONDON // ST. JAMES // W1

The Wolseley, by their own account, is an all-day café-restaurant in the grand European tradition.  I'll agree, grand is a good way to describe it. The Wolsley is located in St. James in a beautiful building that was originally a car showroom for Wolsley Motors in 1921.  The interior is a striking black with gold accents throughout.  The ceilings are two stories high with arching stonework and gorgeous chandeliers you will wish you could fit in your own home somehow.  

They have an impressive breakfast, lunch & dinner menu and impressive service to match. The main dining room is a buzzing, see-and-be-seen vibe.  The first time I heard about The Wolseley, it was in a story about Anna Wintour, the ultimate tastemaker, being seen there. So I figured it must be worth a try, and it definitely was.

Their private dining room will seat 14 guests.  The room is accessed by its own private staircase and is perched in a decadent black and gold paneled room above everything else.  The room is surrounded by arched windows overlooking the main dining room that fill the space with daylight if you book it for breakfast, lunch or tea.  For dinner, the room's black and gold interior comes to life with candlelight and the light from the chandeliers that hang at eye level just outside.  The windows make you feel like you're part of the restaurant buzz but they are draped on the bottom half so your group feels perfectly private.

The restaurant also has a mezzanine level with tables that feel removed from the dining room, if you don't need a truly private space but want to feel set apart from the main area.  It's a fun perch if you can manage to reserve it in advance. 

The Wolseley is part of our full London story, which you can read here.  

Follow us on Instagram for event inspiration and carefully curated private event spaces: @cravenandco.

♥️ TC x

MCGUIRE MOORMAN HOSPITALITY ▪️ AUSTIN, TEXAS

McGuire Moorman Hospitality  is a design/style/taste/experience/food collective that makes you want to live an MMH life.  I could do a breakfast, lunch, happy hour and dinner tour of their restaurants every day if my waistline and career would allow it.  

In each MMH restaurant, they've paid attention to every single detail: from the coaster your cocktail sits on to the uniform the valet who parked your car was wearing.  That's why their restaurants have quickly become Austin staples.  

We've been planning events in the MMH private event spaces and working with their fashionable + cool events director, Fallon Allison, to create menus and experiences that our clients love for years now.

Read More

ELLA ▪️ SACRAMENTO, CA

Ella is a gorgeous restaurant in downtown Sacramento, California that is part of the Selland Family Restaurant group. You can read more about it here in our Travel + Food section.   They have high standards for food, cocktails and service.  The restaurant is designed to have several spaces that are perfect for a private event, whether it's a corporate reception to impress clients or just creating a cozy, private space for dinner or drinks with friends.

THE GRANDE CAPITOL ROOM

[up to 40 guests seated //  up to 50 guests for standing reception]

This room was designed to have four walls and a closing door so the space is completely private.  They can do different table configurations to seat up to 26 guests at one long table or up to 40 guests if your group can be at separate tables.  With some tables removed, it's also a beautiful space for a standing reception for up to 50 guests.

THE CAPITOL ROOM

[up to 20 guests for seated]

The Capitol Room is a portion of the Grande Capitol Room that is along the windows with a view of 12th Street.  It has the same reclaimed shutters and long flowing drapes that you find in the main restaurant, so you still feel like you're part of the main room, but with your own little space.

CHEF'S TABLES

[up to 13 guests seated at each Chef’s Table]

These are my favorite tables in the restaurant.  It is not a private space but it has front row seating to the open kitchen.  The tables are slightly separated from the other tables in the restaurant so that if you book both tables, you could roam around both tables and interact.  It's great if you have a large group but want to feel like you're still part of the action.  The grand scale pendant lights over the tables are a stunning design statement and make it feel like the area is designated for your group even though it's wide open to the restaurant. The tables are wide enough that you could add impressive centerpieces and still have room for everything else.

ELLA BOARDROOM

[up to 14 guests seated // up to 25 guests for standing reception]

This space would be ideal if you want to have your guests' full attention.  It's a fully enclosed, narrow space.  Ella provides a complimentary LCD TV for a business presentation or maybe you just want to watch the season finale of your favorite show with your girlfriends.  It's cozy and fun.

THE SOUTH WING

[up to 32 guests seated // up to 20 guests for standing reception // up to 12 guests seated in curtained off area]

The beautiful, 360 degree bar is in the middle of the restaurant and separates the South Wing from the main restaurant.  The South Wing has lounge seating and drapes you can pull to divide the space.  You can use a portion of the South Wing by using these drapes OR you could take over the full South Wing plus add on the Kay Street Deck for an inside/outside flow.  If you take over just the curtained off area at one end of the South Wing, you can have up to 12 guests seated for a small intimate dinner that's just steps away from the buzzing bar scene.

 

 

KAY STREET DECK

[up to 20 guests seated // up to 30 guests for standing reception]

I love planning a dinner on a terrace that is covered and addresses weather scenarios, because it takes away the worry of doing something outside.  At Ella, they do all of that on their Kay Street Deck.  They have a full ceiling with gorgeous white chandeliers and also misters for hot weather and heaters for cool weather.  I also love this space for doing an indoor/outdoor event by combining the South Wing and the Kay Street Deck.  Imagine a long communal table down the space with tons of candles...that's all you would need for a magical night.

ELLA FULL BUYOUT

[ up to 190 guests for seated //  up to 350 guests for standing reception] 

Ella is available for a full buy out as well.  Full buy outs for any restaurant are available for a price, and usually it's a fairly high price.  For a large group, a restaurant buy out can be worth it, especially since this restaurant includes stunning tables, chairs, china, flatware, glassware and linens.  

Ella gives you a gorgeous indoor space that feels wide open and connected, but still allows you to separate your cocktail and appetizer hour into the South Wing and Kay Street Deck before heading into the main dining room area for your sit down dinner. 

If you are interested in consulting with the Craven + Co. team, please email us:  hello@cravenandco.com. We would love to hear from you!  

Be sure to follow us on Instagram for event inspiration + more carefully curated private event spaces:  @cravenandco.

 

 

CLIVEDEN HOUSE ▪️ TAPLOW, BERKSHIRE UK

With a royal wedding and a royal baby on the way, I wanted to dig a little deeper into private event space in and outside of London. I'll start with Cliveden House, because it is one of my favorite places in the world. We also highlight Cliveden in our full London post.

Cliveden House is only about 30-45 minutes from central London, and  right in the middle of quintessential English countryside. The House is steeped in history, which I’ll let you read about here.  The gardens and grounds of Cliveden are spectacular, and belong to the U.K.'s National Trust.

Cliveden House is an incredible destination for a corporate retreat, milestone birthday or wedding.  They have several private event spaces that mirror the uniqueness and history of the property itself.  The staff is world class, and makes you feel as if you are the only one staying at the house. Recently award winning chef, André Garrett, came on as executive chef straight from the city lights of Mayfair.  So every breakfast, lunch, dinner and afternoon tea will be top notch.  

We had a group over several days, so we experienced everything:  a picnic on the banks of the Thames, a champagne vintage boat ride followed by dinner in The French Dining Room, afternoon tea and a scavenger hunt.

One of my favorite people there is the house manager, Michael Chaloner, who has been there for over 20 years.  Anything you tell him you need, he'll respond with "Leave it with me," meaning "I've got this. You can take it off of your mind and your to-do list," which is the best feeling when you're doing an event.

The private event spaces are outlined below. The photos don't do this place justice.  You need to see Cliveden in person to feel the magic.

THE FRENCH DINING ROOM  

[UP TO 60 GUESTS FOR A WEDDING // 60 FOR DINNER // 100 FOR RECEPTION]

On a visit to Paris in 1897 William Waldorf Astor was shown the intricate gilded panelling in Madame de Pompadour’s 18th century dining room at the Château d’Asnières. The proportions exactly matched those of the dining room at Cliveden House, so he bought the panelling, table and chairs, then had the entire room reconstructed in his home (Cliveden). And to this day, The French Dining Room is a  Rocco masterpiece with views of the river and surrounding Berkshire countryside.

THE LADY ASTOR SUITE

[UP TO 40 FOR A WEDDING]

The Lady Astor Suite is upstairs on the first floor of the mansion. The large suite has very high ceilings and a large terrace overlooking the main terrace, the gardens and the River Thames stretching out below. 

It is a perfect room for a wedding.  To accommodate a wedding, the room is cleared of all furniture and set up with theater style seating.   A champagne reception with hors d' oeuvres on the terrace afterwards creates a perfect place to toast before going to the French Dining Room for your reception dinner.

THE CELLAR DINING ROOM

[UP TO 12 GUESTS FOR DINNER]

The Cellar Dining Room was once Lord Astor's private wine cellar, making it ideal for wine tasting. It has been restored with the brick walls and vaulted ceilings to highlight its stake in history. It is best for intimate dinners in a unique setting.

THE BOUDOIR

[UP TO 24 FOR DINNER // 40 FOR A WEDDING]

The Boudoir is a beautifully designed room that is on the ground floor of the House, located right next to the Great Room.  It is a cozy space with period features and furnishings and large windows overlooking the Parterre and lawn.

THE CHURCHILL

[20 FOR BOARDROOM // 50 FOR THEATER // 48 FOR DINNER //60 FOR RECEPTION]

The Churchill has a more modern feel than some of the other event spaces, but along with that comes audio visual capabilities and other amenities you might need for a corporate retreat. The space opens to a beautiful courtyard.  

Since Cliveden is surrounded by cozy English towns, you can also take a quick car ride to a traditional pub for dinner if you want something different.  On our last night, we were wanting to go super casual so we had pizza delivered to Cliveden and ate it on one of the terraces.  Evidently that doesn't happen very often.  It was definitely more casual than what they're used to, and they really wanted to give us China and silverware to make things more formal.  I didn't have the heart to tell them that we Americans would eat it right out of the box if they'd let us. 

Be sure to follow us on Instagram for event inspiration + more carefully curated private event spaces:  @cravenandco.

If you are interested in consulting with one of our experienced team members, please email us:  hello@cravenandco.com. We would love to work with you!