Bacanal, for those of you that don’t know, was one of the very first London day parties which drew inspiration from the brunch clubs in New York. Luckily for us Londoners they have recently unveiled the next chapter of their story with ‘La Plage’, a pop up residency with weekly Saturday soirees at the Millenium Gloucester Hotel in Kensington.
The event begins with the best intentions at an intimate brunch before the sunshine and glasses of Moet get guests in the mood for a full out party with electric orchestras, Brazilian samba bands, circus acts, fire breathers and stilt walkers to name but a few. Revellers are also helped along by top London DJs providing the soundtrack to an afternoon of outlandish celebrations.
The theme of each party is revealed via Bacanal's website and social media platforms two weeks before each event so guests have plenty of time to perfect their outfits. Previous themes have included Carnival, White and Secret Garden. Bacanal has previously held parties at exclusive London venues like Kensington Roof Gardens, Nozomi, Hurlingham Club, Bloomsbury Ballroom and Supperclub.
Bacanal was originally formed by five friends in 2010, one of those, Diego Lijtmaer, stepped down from his lucrative career in the Square Mile to focus on expanding the brand to Europe’s hottest party destinations like Croatia, Cannes, Milan and London. We managed to meet with Diego to ask him a few questions about London’s most exciting new party event.
How would you describe the concept in 3 words?
Innovative, revolutionary and on trend (or St Tropez in London)
What prompted you to set it up?
La Plage is the natural evolution and maturity of the daytime pop ups we have been doing for some time now. We found the perfect venue to host the most amazing parties. We feel this is the right time for London to have this type of experience on a more consistent basis – a place where you can meet people alike while having great food, sipping amazing cocktails and enjoying top class entertainment.
What type of people does it attract?
It attracts international and local young professionals (25-35) that work in fashion, film, finance and the media industries. People travel from all corners of the world to come to our parties so everyone is welcome – the only rule is to have a good time!
What makes it unique and different?
First of all we are the first day club in London and our venue is unique. We have unique entertainment that has scaled from an electric orchestra to stilt walking fire breathers for our guests to enjoy whilst they brunch on great food. I am a perfectionist, so making sure that the execution of all elements of the party go smoothly is my top priority and I work with a great team and the best DJs in London. Last but not least, the people that attend that make the great atmosphere!
Why did you bring it over to London?
La Plage by Bacanal is inspired by the infamous NYC brunch parties, and trying to bring St Tropez to London. While working in investment banking a group of friends and I decided to bring and adapt the concept creating Bacanal because we were not satisfied with the nightlife and the club scene that London offered in 2010. There was not much to do to meet people on Saturdays. We started the brunch parties inviting our personal network, and it just grew from there, we were so surprised with the amount of people that signed up to our database in the first year!
How does it compare to the one in New York?
I’m proud to say that we have taken an existing concept and adapted it to the European taste. I think what separates our brunches from the ones in NY is the quality of entertainment, our invitation only approach, and the diversity of our guests.
The La Plage launch takes place on the 26th April at Millenium Gloucester Hotel, Kensington.uk