OK – first of all let me say that this was a very special occasion for us. Ten years of marriage to celebrate, or as Mike likes to say “It’s a life sentence, but I’m out on good behaviour now”. We tossed around many ideas on how we’d like to mark the milestone, but one kept coming back… the Ritz.
Years ago we watched a fabulous show about a very creative couple – Laurence and Jackie Llewlyn-Bowen – as they bought and renovated a beautiful English country manor house. The show was called “To the Manor Bowen” if you ever come across it – its a hoot! Anyway, during the filming they celebrated their ten year wedding anniversary with a private dinner in a suite at the London Ritz. We was so taken with that. It was private (other than the TV cameras and later broadcasting across the world), celebratory and special. Then and there I knew I wanted us to have our ten year anniversary at the Paris Ritz.
Only when we decided this we lived in Australia and it would have been a huge trip. It was a happy coincidence that we could now dine at the Ritz and still be home to sleep in our own comfy bed. So Mike booked us for High Tea then sent me into a tail spin with the confirmation response stating the dress code is ‘chic and stylish’ (“What the heck is that?”) My natural instinct for an afternoon of olympic level patisseries is stretchy-pants and a bib so plan B was needed.
On the day it was fine – apparently we were ‘chic and stylish’ because they showed us to a lovely table with two plush wing-back chairs by an open fire. And there we whiled away the afternoon sipping tea, nibbling on way too many pastries, and enjoying a lovely glass of champers prepared for the Ritz by the Rothschilds house. Tip for future players: you get a beautifully presented gift bag with all the treats you didn’t finish plus some little canisters of Ritz tea for you to continue the party at home the next day. And if you really want the full Ritz experience at home, head around to the concept store where you can stock up on everything from the coffee beans to the fluffy towels.
After the tea service is finished at 6pm, Salon Proust magically turns into a champagne bar. I’ve already set the date to try that out when my mum arrives in Paris in a few months.