I wanted New Year to be special. So this year trawling through what’s on I came across the HQS Wellington. For the princely sum of £450 for the both of us, Sophie and I set out to rediscover the high life. Dress code was strictly black tie and I had to buy a new DJ as my old one no longer fitted.
Getting there was simple at it is moored right opposite Temple Tube station. I have to admit to feeling a tad overdressed on the tube, but once there amidst others in their finery I was at home. The beauty of this venue was that it was all inclusive. As much as you wanted to drink was included in the ticket price. We were met on the heated quarter deck with flowing champagne and canapés and entertained by a jazz singer and guitarist. It was then in to the hall for dinner it really was flash and for the most part cordon bleu. Starter, smoked salmon, then sorbet, onion soup (the one disappointment as it was obviously cuppa soup). The main course was beef wellington, dauphinoise potatoes, greens, butternut squash and truffles. The sweet was a Grand Marnier cream fondant, all washed down with copious amounts of wine. The service was second to none. The tables seated ten and five waiters arrived en masse at your table each holding two plates and everybody was served simultaneously, none of the half waiting for food while the waiter gets another tray.
With dinner over we all migrated to the quarter deck for more free drinks and a disco. As midnight approached some of us went to the upper deck for a better view of the fireworks. I have to admit to feeling sorry for those crammed on the Embankment as we stood dressed in our finery with an uninterrupted view of the London Eye, sipping champagne as midnight came with an uninterrupted view of the fireworks.
It was an experience I would recommend to anybody. Thanks to all the staff at the venue for making the New Year so memorable.