Fabulous lunch at Downhall Hotel

When I’m organising events for clients I always ask what is important for them, what memories do they want in years to come? For many, they want their friends and family to have a great time, yes they want a beautiful event but not to the detriment of guest ‘fun’.

In April this year my Mum reached a milestone birthday, not sure she’ll want me to broadcast the age so I better keep that a secret! We have a large family, at the last count I have 7 aunts/uncles + 8 cousins (just on my Mums side) and I won’t even start on the cousins children! We are all over the country and don’t always get the chance to see each other.

My Mum wanted everyone together for a lunch so after some venue searching we confirmed the gorgeous Downhall Hotel in Hertfordshire. I asked the delightful Emma at A Bespoke Design to design an invitation for us which my Mum loved.

With 25 adults + 15 children accepting the invitation we were thrilled that Rebecca reserved the Ibbetsons room which had an adjacent room ideal for the children to ‘hang out’ in! We bought some of our smaller games from Dream Occasions Hire and the children played perfectly until my ex sergeant cousin started teaching the children to use them as missles – honestly some people never grow up!

I asked Ilknur from Mediterranean Occasions to cover the conference chairs and add her lace tie backs.

I knew we didn’t have space for many flowers and with 15 children candles were a NO but I did manage to place some arrangements on the tables, I wanted to keep it elegant but informal as it was family after all.

My Mum goes away a LOT so I had to have a cake that reflected her love of holiday! Sarah from Sugarsponge Cakes did a fab job creating a suitcase cake for us. Calling for ‘cutting’ of the cake was much easier then when I have 200 guests at a wedding!


Good food and service was important to my family and the staff at Downhall outdid themselves, the attention to detail was not unnoticed by any of us. The food was delicious, the staff friendly and professional and the ambience perfect. Staff even helped us arrange a photoshoot outside Downhall entrance which was beyond the call of duty. I can’t even begin to reiterate my thanks to them.

We had such a great time, why? Because it gave us a chance to catch up with family within a relaxed atmosphere. Perfect!

So does anyone else have familiy events to organise this year?


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