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16 April 2014

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What's New: London Venues

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Summer picnic offer at RCP - What's New: London Venues Summer picnic offer at RCP

To mark the half-centenary of its Regent's Park home, the Royal College of Physicians is giving delegates the chance to enjoy a picnic in its private gardens. The deal runs from 14 July-31 August and costs £50pp +VAT.

Afternoon tea offer in Regent's Park - What's New: London Venues Afternoon tea offer in Regent's Park

Need more than just a Rich Tea to sate ravenous delegates after a hard day’s conferencing? Order tea, coffee and biscuits for an event in April and May and Regent’s Conference and Events will lay on home-made fruit scones, clotted cream and strawberry jam for just £3pp +VAT.

50% off at The Hurlingham Club - What's New: London Venues 50% off at The Hurlingham Club

Book the prestigious 18th-century venue for an event in April, and you’ll only pay half the hire fee for your chosen room. Bookings must be for groups of 50 guests or more.

String ensemble in new DJ Cassidy video - What's New: London Venues String ensemble in new DJ Cassidy video

Urban Soul Orchestra appear alongside Jessie J and Robin Thicke in DJ Cassidy’s latest video Calling all Hearts. The contemporary string ensemble has added the single to its Little Big Band repertoire for events.

DDR offer at RIBA Venues - What's New: London Venues DDR offer at RIBA Venues

The Grade II-listed home of the Royal Institute of Architects has a new package for groups of between three and 30 delegates, who can get meeting space, a three-course lunch, Wi-Fi and refreshments for just £30pp +VAT. The offer is valid until 31 May 2014.

Late availability offer at 1 Wimpole Street - What's New: London Venues Late availability offer at 1 Wimpole Street

Quote ‘MARCH20’ when booking one of the W1 venue’s late availability slots, and you’ll get 20% off room hire in March. Rooms available include the new 80-seater Wimpole Lecture Theatre and the Max Rayne Auditorium.

Agency offer at Southbank venue - What's New: London Venues Agency offer at Southbank venue

Agents booking the conference facilities at Coin Street Conference Centre between 1 February and 31 March will get an increased 10% commission. Quote ‘February/March commission offer’ when booking.

Visit York 4 Meetings showcase 2014  - What's New: London Venues Visit York 4 Meetings showcase 2014

This year’s ‘York Minster to Westminster’ will take place on 5 March. Held at the Houses of Parliament and The QEII Conference Centre, the event will bring together 20 York venues and suppliers with event bookers.

Event Photography Awards launched by Off to Work - What's New: London Venues Event Photography Awards launched by Off to Work

The event staffing company has launched a new competition for both professional and amateur photographers involved in the events industry, as well as social media snappers. The Event Photography Awards 2014 will see entrants compete in three categories, with the winners announced at a ceremony on 8 April at the London Irish Centre. Click here for more information, or emailto enter or register your interest.

Conference DDR offer in Regent's Park - What's New: London Venues Conference DDR offer in Regent's Park

Regent's Conferences & Events is offering upgrades to hot fork buffets on DDR packages (£58pp + VAT) booked before 31 March. Packages include a meeting room for 25-370 attendees and all-day catering as standard.

New event offers at East Wintergarden - What's New: London Venues New event offers at East Wintergarden

The Canary Wharf venue has a variety of deals running through February and March. Among other things, every direct event booker gets a Links of London bracelet or magnum of Champagne, while complimentary canapes will be served at dinner events.

Industry showcase event ‘Strictly SW7’ - What's New: London Venues Industry showcase event ‘Strictly SW7’

On 4 March 2014, The V&A, Science Museum and Natural History Museum will open their doors for what is set to be another successful ‘Strictly SW7’. The South Ken trio’s showcase event sees each museum show off what it can do for corporate events, with attendees moving between the venues over the course of the evening. Entertainment, lighting, flower and furnishing suppliers will all feature – catering is always a highlight, with the likes of Ampersand taking the reins at the Natural History Museum.

Free furniture hire at Icetank - What's New: London Venues Free furniture hire at Icetank

The Covent Garden venue is offering planners free furniture hire for all bookings taking place in February. Quote ‘Furniture February’ when you call and the venue will help you choose the ideal set up for your event.

Ampersand to cater for Greenwich venue - What's New: London Venues Ampersand to cater for Greenwich venue

The Old Royal Naval College has chosen Ampersand to head up its events catering. The company will look after a vast range of events at the historic venue, from small business meetings to prestigious dinners.

No minimum hire spend at headrooms - What's New: London Venues No minimum hire spend at headrooms

Book a meeting in any of the Clerkenwell venue’s three meeting rooms and take advantage of no minimum hire charge. Spaces include the cosy Library room and the 40-capacity Green room.

Our week in pictures: 25 Nov - 1 Dec, 2013 - Event Reviews & Venue Focus Our week in pictures: 25 Nov - 1 Dec, 2013

A week in the life of team V&E is a mixed bag of eating and drinking, meeting and greeting, dancing, and occasional bad behaviour. Here are some snaps so you can see what we get up to.

Winter offer from Urban Soul Orchestra - What's New: London Venues Winter offer from Urban Soul Orchestra

Quote ‘Square Meal’ when you book the contemporary string ensemble’s winter ‘Chill Out’ set and you’ll get 10% off hire charge. The quartet can also perform seasonal arrangements for festive drinks receptions.

Oyster offer at The Deck - What's New: London Venues Oyster offer at The Deck

The Deck at the National Theatre is paying homage to the oyster season by offering 20% off its seafood bars during months with an ‘r’ in them. Book yours in from January-April or September-December 2014.

Piccadilly Institute launches new cocktail - What's New: London Venues Piccadilly Institute launches new cocktail

The Late Night London venue has added a fun new cocktail to its drinks menu. The Avalanche consists of vodka, crème de banana, Amaretto and white cacao, and is garnished with a Lego skier.

Our week in pictures: 11 - 17 Nov, 2013 - What's New: London Venues Our week in pictures: 11 - 17 Nov, 2013

A week in the life of team V&E is a mixed bag of eating and drinking, meeting and greeting, dancing, and occasional bad behaviour. Here are some snaps so you can see what we get up to.

20% off coach hire in November - What's New: London Venues 20% off coach hire in November

Book and travel with King’s Ferry coach service before the end of November, and you’ll receive 20% off the hire charge. The offer can't be claimed retrospectively for bookings made before 11 November 2013.

2014 conference offer at ODEON  - What's New: London Venues 2014 conference offer at ODEON

Looking to book a conference in 2014? Confirm your event at any one of ODEON’s 100 venues before Friday, 20 December 2013 and you’ll receive 20% off room hire.

Breakfast meeting offer at Roast - What's New: London Venues Breakfast meeting offer at Roast

The Borough Market restaurant is offering an exclusive-hire deal for breakfast events held on any Monday or Tuesday in October and November. Breakfast and venue hire will start at £2,000 based on 100 guests.

New winter cocktails from Bubble Food - What's New: London Venues New winter cocktails from Bubble Food

The molecular caterer has created three new festive drinks for seasonal events. The offerings include a glow-in-the-dark vodka, a Japanese cherry blossom margarita and Champagne with rhubarb caviar.

New delivery service from Harrods - What's New: London Venues New delivery service from Harrods

The department store has announced its Gourmet Office Delivery service. As well as the express working lunch menu already on offer, catering orders for meetings, canapé receptions and full events are now available.

15% off room hire in Regent’s Park - What's New: London Venues 15% off room hire in Regent’s Park

Following its recent relaunch, Regent's Conferences & Events is offering 15% off meeting room rates for October-November 2013. Its five spaces can hold from four to 370 guests. Email the venue for details.

Open day at Stationers’ Hall - What's New: London Venues Open day at Stationers’ Hall

The City Livery Hall will host a showcase for event bookers on Tuesday 8 October from 9am-5pm. The team from in-house caterer Chester Boyd will be on hand to give guided tours of the venue. Register here to attend.

Offers for bookers as Trinity House turns 500 - What's New: London Venues Offers for bookers as Trinity House turns 500

In celebration of its 500th anniversary in 2014, the Tower Bridge venue is offering two deals for event organisers. All bookers who confirm a private event for 2014 before 31 December 2013 will receive a complimentary bottle of Pol Roger Reserve Champagne. Additionally, all bookings made for May 2014 will also receive a £500 discount on venue hire.

Michelin-quality menu on the Harmony - What's New: London Venues Michelin-quality menu on the Harmony

Chef Simon Hulstone has created a menu for the Bateaux London boat. On 10 and 25 October guests will enjoy a Champagne and canapé reception followed by a five-course menu and entertainment during the cruise.

Exclusive wine-pairing evening at Boyds Brasserie - What's New: London Venues Exclusive wine-pairing evening at Boyds Brasserie

On 1 October, Boyds Brasserie Bar & Lounge will welcome legendary Bordeaux winemaker Lucien Guillemet – one of the most respected producers in France – for an exclusive wine-tasting dinner that will showcase the best wines from his prestigious estate, Château Boyd-Cantenac. The evening will kick off with a Champagne and canapé reception, before guests sit down to a four-course menu specially-prepared for the occasion by Boyds’ head chef Richard Lee. Tickets to the event cost £79. To book your place, email the venue.

Tobacco Dock to host Taste - What's New: London Venues Tobacco Dock to host Taste

We hear the Wapping warehouse will be hosting Taste of Christmas this winter. The event will take place from 21-24 November and will showcase dishes from top restaurants, alongside wine tastings and foodie gift ideas.

2014 DDR offer at Sofitel St James - What's New: London Venues 2014 DDR offer at Sofitel St James

The West End hotel has an offer for meetings booked between 1 January and 31 March 2014, when the DDR cost £85pp and include venue hire, Wi-Fi access, a hot and cold lunch, stationery and assorted sweets.

New DDR at the Congress Centre - What's New: London Venues New DDR at the Congress Centre

The Tottenham Court Road venue has a new all-inclusive DDR offer of £49pp. This includes arrival drinks, a working lunch, afternoon refreshments, venue hire and stationery. The deal is valid until 30 November 2013.

Autumn offer at Chelsea FC - What's New: London Venues Autumn offer at Chelsea FC

The football club has late-availability discounts for meetings booked at the club before the end of October. The reduced DDR of £49pp will include venue hire, stationery, a buffet lunch and refreshments throughout the day.

Bleeding Heart turns 30 - What's New: London Venues Bleeding Heart turns 30

The City restaurant will be celebrating its 30th birthday with 1983 prices on glasses of house wine and select dishes until Friday 20 September. There will also be a three-course set menu at £9.83 and five courses at £19.83.

New venue from Davy’s Wine Bars - What's New: London Venues New venue from Davy’s Wine Bars

Greenwich’s original Victorian wine cellar will be opening in a new guise – a subterranean cocktail bar. The Cooperage will open on 25 September and will have space for 200 guests when hired exclusively.

Winter showcase at Clause Bar - What's New: London Venues Winter showcase at Clause Bar

Swizzlesticks Events will host a showcase at one of its City bars on 24 September from 5-9pm. As well as showing off its three venues, the group will also offer a 10% discount on winter events booked on the night.

New DDRs at Chandos House - What's New: London Venues New DDRs at Chandos House

This October, the Grade I-listed venue is offering eight-hour room hire, catering and AV facilities for £50 per delegate. Refreshments include tea and coffee, along with pastries in the morning and a working lunch.

New event space at Chelsea FC - What's New: London Venues New event space at Chelsea FC

The west London football club has opened its onsite museum for receptions. For £39pp +VAT, up to 175 guests can enjoy bowl food and canapés while surrounded by memorabilia from the team’s past.

New meeting room at Kew - What's New: London Venues New meeting room at Kew

Following last year’s extensive restoration, Kew Palace has now completed the final interior renovations by adding a 10-capacity meeting room. The venue, located within Kew Gardens, offers all the facilities of a modern meeting venue, including high-tech AV, but in an historic Georgian building. Guided tours and the chance to include dinner or a drinks reception in the palace’s other event spaces are also available.

New exhibition on HQS Wellington - What's New: London Venues New exhibition on HQS Wellington

The battleship has launched an exhibition to mark 70 years since the end of the longest military campaign in WWII. ‘Convoy: The Battle of The Atlantic’ will be available during private events until 16 December.

Pop-up at Ripley’s Believe It or Not!    - What's New: London Venues Pop-up at Ripley’s Believe It or Not!

The Piccadilly Circus attraction is hosting its first ever pop-up exhibition, showcasing a series of works by British ‘sleep-walking artist’ Lee Hadwin. It will be open from now until 29 September 2013.

New all-inclusive PDR menu at Bam-Bou - What's New: London Venues New all-inclusive PDR menu at Bam-Bou

The Georgian townhouse has launched its new private dining menu, the ‘Charlotte Street Banquet’. Diners will enjoy a cocktail on arrival, a three-course pan-Asian menu, plus half a bottle of wine – all for £50pp.

Free drinks with event bookings - What's New: London Venues Free drinks with event bookings

New events confirmed for the month of August at one of Late Night London’s venues will receive a complimentary drinks reception. This offer applies to exclusive-hire bookings for 30+ guests only.

Discount at Côte restaurant - What's New: London Venues Discount at Côte restaurant

The St Paul’s branch of the French brasserie chain is offering event organisers 20% off food when booking its event spaces. The offer will be valid until 15 September 2013. Contact the venue for further details.

Chelsea FC introduces new DDRs - What's New: London Venues Chelsea FC introduces new DDRs

The club has launched a new ‘Motivate Monday’ DDR. A price of £49pp includes room hire, lunch, tea and coffee and Chelsea FC meeting stationary. Its ‘Frivolous Friday’ package (also £49pp) includes an afternoon beer.

New Pimm’s ‘drink’ from Bubble - What's New: London Venues New Pimm’s ‘drink’ from Bubble

The molecular caterer has created an homage to the quintessential summer sip, Pimm's No 1. The ‘drink’ comprises strawberry, mint and cucumber raviolis, lemon foam and orange perfume.

15% off private events at Skylon - What's New: London Venues 15% off private events at Skylon

D&D London’s South Bank restaurant is offering 15% off food and drink spend for all private events held in August 2013. email the team for more details about the promotion.

Reduced DDR at 30 Euston Square - What's New: London Venues Reduced DDR at 30 Euston Square

The Searcys venue is offering an all-inclusive day delegate rate of £59pp for meetings held in its auditorium and exhibition space this September. The offer applies to new bookings for up to 300 delegates.

Private hire at 1 Lombard Street - What's New: London Venues Private hire at 1 Lombard Street

From 12-30 August, 1776 Restaurant at 1 Lombard Street will be available to hire exclusively, accommodating 55 seated or 120 standing guests. For more information, contact the events team.

Open-air theatre at The Roof Gardens - What's New: London Venues Open-air theatre at The Roof Gardens

The west London clubhouse is marking its 75th anniversary with a series of live shows in its Tudor Gardens. We’re most excited about Romeo & Juliet, which will be performed on 6, 11 and 12 August, and is to be served up with a hog roast to keep in line with the Tudor theme of the evenings. Evening events last from 7pm until 11pm, and prices start at £65pp.

Festive display at No.4 Hamilton Place - What's New: London Venues Festive display at No.4 Hamilton Place

On Monday 29 July,the Edwardian town house will showcase its 2013 Christmas offerings. Festively themed for the event, the venue will display the food choices and rooms available for bookings.

Dutch Hall hosts ISES summer party - What's New: London Venues Dutch Hall hosts ISES summer party

Industri’s newest venue Dutch Hall held its inaugural event on 16 July, hosting the ISES AGM and summer party. Incoming ISES president Jane Hague announced its newly-appointed board members for the coming year.

50% off private capsule hire on the EDF Energy London Eye - What's New: London Venues 50% off private capsule hire on the EDF Energy London Eye

Book a private event on the iconic attraction before 26 July and you’ll get 50% off hire prices. With capacity for between three and 25 guests, its private capsules will be half price for events held in July and August. The offer includes capsule hire, the 30-minute rotation on the Eye, entry to the 4D Cinema Experience and drinks, canapés or finger food. The discounted prices start at £30.96pp – don’t forget to quote ‘LESUM13’ when booking.

Butcher Bar pop-up in the City - What's New: London Venues Butcher Bar pop-up in the City

Game’s on the menu from 20 August at Cinnamon Kitchen’s Butcher Bar. The Anise bar will be adorned with hanging hooks and antlers and will feature game boards to showcase chef Vivek Singh’s Indian fare.

‘Frozen’ afternoon tea at Paramount - What's New: London Venues ‘Frozen’ afternoon tea at Paramount

To celebrate the hot weather, the lofty Centre Point venue has a new ‘Iced Tea’ package. The deal includes traditional sweet and savoury treats, along with frozen desserts and a Pina Colada. Prices start at £28pp.

BBQ deal at The Roof Gardens - What's New: London Venues BBQ deal at The Roof Gardens

The Kensington venue is taking advantage of the sun with a BBQ lunch offer at £68pp. Packages include use of the gardens, a glass of fizz and lunch. The offer is valid until 31 August, on any day except Sunday.

Summer discounts at 45 Millbank - What's New: London Venues Summer discounts at 45 Millbank

The Grade-II listed venue is offering a 30% discount on venue hire fees. The deal is valid for all new bookings for events held in July and August 2013. Email the venue or call 020 7514 8514 for further details.

New luxury picnics from Corrigan’s - What's New: London Venues New luxury picnics from Corrigan’s

The Mayfair restaurant has launched a new range of gourmet picnic hampers for summer. Prepared to order and priced from £45pp, they contain three dishes per person, as well as homemade bread, half a bottle of Champagne, mineral water, crockery, cutlery, glassware and a blanket. Corrigan’s also offers groups a luxury picnic experience, priced from £1,000, including a personal butler. Picnic hampers can be ordered on 020 7499 9943.

Event showcase at the RCSE  - What's New: London Venues Event showcase at the RCSE

On 30 July The Royal College of Surgeons of England will open its doors for event bookers. The 18th-century venue will show off event space available for both corporate and private events from midday until 6pm.

DDR offer at Sofitel London St James - What's New: London Venues DDR offer at Sofitel London St James

The five-star West End hotel has a DDR deal starting at £70pp (a saving of £35pp) for events taking place before 31 August 2013. The rate includes venue hire, Wi-Fi, a buffet lunch, three coffee breaks and stationery.

Venues & Events Live 2013 show preview - Event Focus Venues & Events Live 2013 show preview

We’re all ready and raring to go for the ninth annual Square Meal Venues & Events Live exhibition at Old Billingsgate in September. Read on for all of this year’s new features.

Summer screenings at Cinnamon Kitchen - What's New: London Venues Summer screenings at Cinnamon Kitchen

The restaurant and Picturehouse cinema have joined forces for a weekend of outdoor film screenings on 26 and 27 July. Tickets cost £35pp and include a cocktail, canapés and bowl food. Maximum capacity is 100.

Complimentary cocktail reception at Swizzlestick venues  - What's New: London Venues Complimentary cocktail reception at Swizzlestick venues

Following the launch of its events division, Swizzlestick is offering Square Meal readers a complimentary cocktail reception for all summer events held in July and August at any of the group’s three bars, Pause, Clause and Patch. Each venue will provide a dedicated events manager, individually catered menus, DJs and late licences. Suitable for birthday parties, corporate events, wedding or engagement parties and more, each of the three venues will also offer the event organiser a £100 bar tab to enjoy at either its Patch or Clause bars. To take advantage of this offer for up to 400 guests, call the venue on 020 7621 0850.

Lord’s to give away Mont Blanc pens  - What's New: London Venues Lord’s to give away Mont Blanc pens

Book a conference for at least 80 delegates in the Thomas Lord Suite and one guest will receive a Mont Blanc pen. The offer is valid for events held from 1 September-31 December 2013.

Three new DDRs at Trinity House - What's New: London Venues Three new DDRs at Trinity House

The Tower Hill venue has launched three new DDRs with its catering partner Payne & Gunter. Prices start at £67pp and include exclusive use of the venue from 9am–5pm, a two-course buffet lunch and drink breaks.

 Up at the O2 launches new climbs - What's New: London Venues Up at the O2 launches new climbs

Early birds and night owls can climb The O2 away from the crowds, following the launch of exclusive new teambuilding time slots. Prices start at £500 for a sunrise or sunset session for 15 climbers.

Go backstage at Cirque du Soleil  - What's New: London Venues Go backstage at Cirque du Soleil

For the first time in the UK, Cirque du Soleil will be doing back-of-house tours of its show when it returns to the Royal Albert Hall in January 2014. The package will include a meet-and-greet with a crew member and Q&A session pre-show, plus a backstage visit and photo session with the artists afterwards. This will only be available for corporate groups of up to 20 guests per night for an additional £100 on top of hospitality prices.

Free dinner in Docklands for bookers - What's New: London Venues Free dinner in Docklands for bookers

All event organisers who confirm a booking at the Museum of London Docklands will receive a £30 voucher for lunch or dinner in the venue’s resident bar and restaurant, Rum & Sugar. The offer is valid until 2014.

Free night’s stay at One Wimpole Street  - What's New: London Venues Free night’s stay at One Wimpole Street

Book an event in September or October and your guest speaker will receive free accommodation the night before. The venue is also offering free use of its award-winning IML handheld audience response units.

Rock Lobsta to open at Mahiki London - What's New: London Venues Rock Lobsta to open at Mahiki London

The team behind the popular Shoreditch pop-up is opening a permanent restaurant in Mayfair. Set to launch in mid-July, the diner will seat 60 and serve luxed-up junk food. Don’t miss the lobster corn dog.

Spain pops up on the South Bank - What's New: London Venues Spain pops up on the South Bank

The Deck at the National Theatre will be hosting ‘Teatro de Alimentos’ – a Spanish pop-up with a six-course tasting menu and matching wines – on 6 and 7 August. Groups of up to 10 guests can book for £89.95pp.

Bubble Food to cater at ElBulli exhibition - What's New: London Venues Bubble Food to cater at ElBulli exhibition

The molecular caterer will be providing food for the ElBulli retrospective at Somerset House on 5 July-29 September. Its chefs will also be hosting interactive teambuilding workshops throughout the exhibition.

MPI UK and Ireland Chapter summer party - What's New: London Venues MPI UK and Ireland Chapter summer party

The association is inviting meeting industry professionals to join them at its annual Summer Charity Party aboard HMS President on Monday 15 July (6pm-10pm). Tickets cost £40 and are available to non-members.

New summer pop-up at Gray’s Inn - What's New: London Venues New summer pop-up at Gray’s Inn

The central London livery hall has launched a new restaurant in its summer marquee. The Garden Room in The Walks is now open for private evening events for up to 600 guests until 25 July 2013.

Free river cruise from Trinity House  - What's New: London Venues Free river cruise from Trinity House

The Tower Hill venue will host free ‘River Rhapsody’ rides on the Thames for bookers who have confirmed an event (usually £200). Up to four guests will be able to ride on Trinity Tide on Tuesday evenings this summer.

All Star Lanes unveils new-look private rooms - What's New: London Venues All Star Lanes unveils new-look private rooms

The all-American boutique bowling chain has revamped the PDRs in three of its central London venues. Following a £35,000 refurbishment, the private spaces have now been individually themed: the Bayswater venue has been transformed into a hunting lodge, an 80s bachelor penthouse is now the backdrop for Brick Lane, while Holborn is styled as a 50s club house. Each space has its own bowling lanes, cocktail bar and karaoke screen.

Anniversary shows at The Roof Gardens - What's New: London Venues Anniversary shows at The Roof Gardens

The west London clubhouse is marking its 75th anniversary with a series of live shows in the Tudor Gardens. Romeo & Juliet will be performed on 6, 11 and 12 August, along with a hog roast. Prices start at £65pp.

Pimm’s Summer Garden now open - What's New: London Venues Pimm’s Summer Garden now open

Popping up in Covent Garden until 29 June, Pimm's' indoor garden is a top spot for watching Wimbledon. Guests can hire a blanket (with cans of Pimm’s and a basket of traditional picnic food) for £20pp.

Lunchtime showcase at The British Museum - What's New: London Venues Lunchtime showcase at The British Museum

The Grade I-listed landmark will host a screening of Breakfast at Tiffany’s as part of a showcase event on 16 July, from 12-3pm. There’ll be canapés and drinks from in-house caterer Benugo, as well as a quiz where guests will have the chance to win a prize worth over £100 from the museum shop. The Powderpuff Girls will also be on hand, providing manicures and make up sessions, to get you looking your best for the Snappabox photo booth. To attend, contact the team here , by 10 July.

Wimbledon ice creams from Daphne’s - What's New: London Venues Wimbledon ice creams from Daphne’s

Parked outside the South Ken restaurant, Daphne’s ice cream cart will be serving up frozen desserts during the tennis tournament. Flavours will include strawberry and shortbread, and peach and Prosecco.

Venue hire discount at BMA House - What's New: London Venues Venue hire discount at BMA House

The Grade II-listed building is offering a 50% discount on room hire for events booked for September 2013. Spaces on offer includes the 320-capacity Great Hall, which has state-of-the-art AV. Email the venue for details.

New DRR offer at RIBA - What's New: London Venues New DRR offer at RIBA

Now able to accommodate conferences for up to 400 delegates, RIBA has launched an introductory DDR of £68pp. The package includes hire of the Florence Hall and Jarvis Auditorium, plus full AV support and catering.

Summer discounts at Rich Mix - What's New: London Venues Summer discounts at Rich Mix

The creative arts centre is offering 25% off room hire for non-screening events held from June-August. The offer is valid for the venue’s two post-industrial event spaces. To book, email the events team and quote ‘SUM13’.

One Aldwych launches 'Film & Fizz' - What's New: London Venues One Aldwych launches 'Film & Fizz'

The five-star Covent Garden hotel has announced a new dinner and movie night season. From 7-29 June, the venue will be screening films such as Flight and Django Unchained. Audiences will also enjoy Lallier Champagne and a three-course modern British dinner in Axis for the all-inclusive price of £42.50pp. Confirm an event worth £2,000 in the Screening Room before December 31 and receive two complimentary tickets to the ‘Film & Fizz’ nights.

Corrigan’s to host monthly masterclass  - What's New: London Venues Corrigan’s to host monthly masterclass

The Mayfair restaurant is holding a series of cookery classes from July-October. Each session will feature a different ingredient (such as grouse and crab) and include a three-course dinner. Classes cost £120pp.

Complimentary Champagne lunch at Headrooms  - What's New: London Venues Complimentary Champagne lunch at Headrooms

Headrooms is a brand new meeting, conference and events venue five minutes from Farringdon station. For bookings of more than 25 delegates, the venue will provide a Champagne lunch prepared by Fifteen chef, Joe Grey. Spaces include the Green room, which has meeting space for 40 people, the Cabinet room with boardroom-style space for 15 and the Snug, best suited to smaller meetings.

New cruise event from Alchemist Dreams - What's New: London Venues New cruise event from Alchemist Dreams

The organic liqueur company will host its next event on June 11. The two-hour cruise (at £70pp) will mix five of its summer cocktails with complementary cakes, while guests sail along Regent’s Canal.

Last chance to book: ‘David Bowie Is’ at the V&A - What's New: London Venues Last chance to book: ‘David Bowie Is’ at the V&A

The Victoria & Albert Museum has just two dates left – Monday 1 July and Thursday 4 July – for private views of its sold-out David Bowie exhibition and there’s a last-minute discount for anyone wishing to grab them. With 20% off, hire of the museum’s Dome and John Madejski Garden (both able to host 700 guests) starts from £6,400, including exclusive access to ‘David Bowie Is’. Email the venue for details.

New 1920s pop-up at Quaglino’s - What's New: London Venues New 1920s pop-up at Quaglino’s

Launching this weekend at the Mayfair restaurant is subterranean cocktail and jazz pop-up bar The Hutch Club. The space will be located in the depths of Quaglino’s from 1 June to 31 August and will host an art deco-inspired Martini Bar, a private Drinking Den (available to hire exclusively for 15-25 guests) and London’s first alcoholic Popcorn Bar. The Hutch Club will also be holding masterclasses and tastings. Email the venue for details.

August discounts at ICETANK - What's New: London Venues August discounts at ICETANK

The Covent Garden venue is offering event bookers 20% off all functions booked for the month of August. Its blank canvas space is available for dinners, exhibitions and product launches. Email the events team for details.

Summer PDR offer at Sartoria - What's New: London Venues Summer PDR offer at Sartoria

The events team at this sleek Mayfair Italian is offering a complimentary canapé reception for any new private dining bookings confirmed for July or August 2013. Contact the venue for further details and availability.

Summer parties in Bloomsbury  - What's New: London Venues Summer parties in Bloomsbury

BMA House has unveiled its new summer party package. The ‘Summer Soiree in the City’ deal offers an evening in its courtyard and Grade II-listed rooms, with packages starting at £79.95pp +VAT.

Conference upgrades at Guoman - What's New: London Venues Conference upgrades at Guoman

The hotel group is offering a range of upgrade options – from afternoon tea to overnight stays – for DDR events booked before 31 September. Available at all Guoman properties, the deal applies to groups of 10 or more.

Free Samsung Galaxy tablets when booking an event at Chelsea FC - What's New: London Venues Free Samsung Galaxy tablets when booking an event at Chelsea FC

Combining Premier League football with a stack of versatile entertainment spaces, Chelsea's Stamford Bridge stadium is an impressive venue for events. From 1 May to 31 Dec this year, the club will give event bookers either £200 worth of Love to Shop vouchers or a Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1 when confirming an event with a minimum spend of £10,000. This offer is valid for non-matchday functions and new bookings only.

New pop up PDR in Mayfair - What's New: London Venues New pop up PDR in Mayfair

Hot on the heels of its first anniversary and the launch of its new brunch menu, the next two months will see Mayfair’s 34 hosting a private dining pop up seating up to 60 guests. For more information,email the venue.

Summer wine tasting at Davy’s - What's New: London Venues Summer wine tasting at Davy’s

If you are baffled by Brunello or vexed by Vermentino, Davy’s at Woolgate EC2 is offering an Italian wine masterclass on 13 June. The tasting will be followed by a two-course Italian supper. Tickets cost £49.95pp.

Summer parties at Inner Temple - What's New: London Venues Summer parties at Inner Temple

Throughout July, the EC4 venue’s 600-capacity marquee will be available for hire. Prices start at £89pp for bookings of 300 people and include a canapé reception, unlimited drinks, giant garden games and a BBQ.

Sarnies from Sodexo - What's New: London Venues Sarnies from Sodexo

To celebrate British Sandwich Week (May 12-19) Sodexo Prestige will be offering a regional sandwich selection, based on locally sourced ingredients, in all of its venues as part of the DDR.

Summer deal at the Congress Centre  - What's New: London Venues Summer deal at the Congress Centre

The hi-tech conference and events venue has launched a summer DDR offer of £42.50pp. The deal is valid for new events booked between 1 July and 6 September, and includes healthy refreshments and room hire.

New summer cocktails at The Deck  - What's New: London Venues New summer cocktails at The Deck

Inspired by the warmer weather, the rooftop venue’s event team has created a refreshing new cocktail menu. The drinks are available to anyone who hosts an event in the 120-capacity space.

New space at One Great George Street - What's New: London Venues New space at One Great George Street

The Westminster venue has increased its number of spaces for hire from 19 to 21. The venue has added a new boardroom and made the office of the Director General of the ICE available for dinners for up to 16.

Revamped rooftop at the Kia Oval - What's New: London Venues Revamped rooftop at the Kia Oval

After a £250,000 redevelopment, the Corinthian Roof Terrace, which sits atop the OCS Stand, offers views across the Kia Oval’s famous grounds and surrounding cityscape. Developed by Keith Prowse, the space is now available for corporate bookings and offers grazing menus, a DJ booth for post-match entertainment and stylish seating for your guests. Over the summer, the terrace will play host to Surrey’s £99 ‘Raise the Roof’ hospitality package during the Friends Life Twenty20 and, subject to availability, is still available to book for the Investec Ashes, ICC Champions Trophy and the NatWest Series T20s against New Zealand. Packages start at £349pp.

Summer parties at 116 Pall Mall - What's New: London Venues Summer parties at 116 Pall Mall

The IoD's private garden and Carlton room can be hired during the summer months for sit-down meals for up to 100 guests and drinks receptions for 300. Drinks and canapé packages start at £55pp +VAT.

Day delegate deal at The RSA - What's New: London Venues Day delegate deal at The RSA

The WC2 venue has a new DDR package, starting at £57pp for all events booked before 30 September 2013. This includes lunch and full-day hire of a meeting space, such as the refurbished Great Room, which seats 100.

New healthy drinks menu at Bam-Bou - What's New: London Venues New healthy drinks menu at Bam-Bou

The Grade II-listed Georgian townhouse has a spring drinks collection to complement its new Health menu. We like the sound of the Green Russian, made with fresh avocado, vodka, pineapple and lime juice.

Booking offer at Roast - What's New: London Venues Booking offer at Roast

Event organisers who hire Borough Market restaurant Roast before 31 Dec 2013 will receive a £200 voucher that can be spent on dinner or drinks at the venue after the event. Email the venue for details.

New event space at Maritime Greenwich - What's New: London Venues New event space at Maritime Greenwich

Once the residence of the commander of the Royal Naval College, Admiral’s House in Greenwich has been extensively renovated and is available for private hire from today (Friday 26 April). Having had all its bedrooms removed, the house now offers six event spaces, accommodating meetings, weddings, dinners and drinks receptions for between 10-80 guests. Organisers can choose to book the whole house exclusively or pick individual rooms. We particularly like the oak-panelled Webb Room, which makes an impressive boardroom for up to 30 guests. DDR packages start at £52pp.

The Ivy pops up in Mayfair - What's New: London Venues The Ivy pops up in Mayfair

For one night only each month, Caprice Holdings will be holding an exclusive dinner at The Mount Street Deli, each hosted by one of the restaurant group’s head chefs. Starting with The Ivy, the first dinner will cooked by executive chef Gary Lee on Thursday 25 April. Available for groups of 10-12 people, a four-course tasting menu with matching wines is priced at £100pp. The dinner will start at 7pm and includes a glass of Champagne and canapés. To book, email Caprice Holdings.

New venue in the City - What's New: London Venues New venue in the City

Grade II-listed church Dutch Hall has just opened for corporate events. Built in 1550, the venue is located in Austin Friars and has three spaces available, with room for up to 380 guests for a reception in the Great Hall.

British Sandwich Week at Chelsea FC - What's New: London Venues British Sandwich Week at Chelsea FC

In celebration of the nationwide event, organised by the British Sandwich Association, Chelsea Football Club will add a British sirloin steak sandwich canapé to its meetings and events menu during 12-19 May.

Afternoon tea offer at Bateaux London - What's New: London Venues Afternoon tea offer at Bateaux London

Groups can receive 15% of all afternoon tea bookings on board the Naticia or MV Harmony until the end of May.

Venue hire deal at The Foundling Museum - What's New: London Venues Venue hire deal at The Foundling Museum

The Brunswick Square art museum is offering Square Meal readers a 20% discount on room hire for all events booked in May. Intimate dinners for 40 can be held in the Court Room. For more details, email the venue.

Exclusive-use deal at 30 Pavilion Road - What's New: London Venues Exclusive-use deal at 30 Pavilion Road

The Georgian town house in Knightsbridge is now available for private hire. Packages include exclusive use of the venue, two nights’ accommodation for 21 guests and a gala dinner. For details, email the venue.

New event space at HMS Belfast - What's New: London Venues New event space at HMS Belfast

A riverside bar and cafe has opened aboard the London Bridge war ship. Located at the main entrance, the Café Bar, which seats 24 diners, offers modern and seasonal menus and is available for private hire.

Venue hire discount at RCSE - What's New: London Venues Venue hire discount at RCSE

Royal College of Surgeons is offering 25% off room hire for bookings made in April. The deal also includes a free PowerPoint package and an increased commission rate for agents. Quote ‘RCSAP13’ when booking.

Win a three-course meal with wine for four at Northbank - What's New: London Venues Win a three-course meal with wine for four at Northbank

To celebrate the arrival of its new head chef Jason Marchant (ex-Claridges), the restaurant is running a competition highlighting his Cornish-influenced modern British menu. Typical dishes include pot-roasted chicken with Cornish Mead - a historical West Country, honey-based alcoholic drink which featured in the great halls of King Henry VIII and more recently in the Harry Potter books – and Camel Valley sparkling jelly with ice cream. Click through for details on how to enter the competition.

New events division at City bar chain - What's New: London Venues New events division at City bar chain

After nine years of hosting exclusive parties, Swizzlestick has launched a dedicated events arm. With three contemporary City venues (Clause, Pause and Patch) offering a range of options for corporate and private hire, the company will now provide event managers who can create tailored packages with live bands, performance art and late-night dancing. To mark this addition to the Swizzlestick stable, the group will be holding a Champagne reception at Pause Bar on Wednesday 17 April from 6-10pm. Please RSVP to attend.

New dinner deals at RIBA - What's New: London Venues New dinner deals at RIBA

The art deco venue has a new dinner package for £98 per person. The deal includes a three-course meal, drinks reception on the roof terrace, dining room hire and use of the grand piano. For details, email the venue.

Event offer at Royal Society of Medicine - What's New: London Venues Event offer at Royal Society of Medicine

Book a meeting this March and April at One Wimpole Street and enjoy unlimited tea and coffee, along with room hire (up to 30 delegates), for £50 per hour. The offer also includes Wi-Fi and still and sparkling water.

Free room hire at All Star Lanes - What's New: London Venues Free room hire at All Star Lanes

There’s no venue hire fee when you book the 30-capacity private rooms at Bayswater or Holborn from 31 March – 2 April. Each space has its own lanes, private bar, karaoke and food from a seasonal menu.

Come taste our Canapé Cup winners at Confex - What's New: London Venues Come taste our Canapé Cup winners at Confex

This week, Square Meal is at ExCeL for International Confex (from 19-21 March). Come and see us on stand K270, where the Venues & Events team will be handing out copies of our 2013 Guide, while Eden, Cinnamon Soho, The Brewery and Party Ingredients dish out award-winning bites from the 2012 Square Meal Canapé Cup.

Anniversary deals at HMS Belfast - What's New: London Venues Anniversary deals at HMS Belfast

It’s been 75 years since the WWII warship set sail from Belfast on St Patrick’s Day. To celebrate, all events on board the permanently-moored vessel during March will receive a complimentary celebration cake for each guest attending a daytime do and a free glass of Champagne per guest for any evening event. The venue is also offering its HMS Belfast Experience dinner package at a reduced rate of £75pp +VAT.

Teambuilding deal at Vinopolis - What's New: London Venues Teambuilding deal at Vinopolis

The London Bridge wine-tasting destination is offering groups of 10 or more a saving of £12 per person on its Classic Wine Tasting tickets, along with free entry for the organiser. Email the venue for details.

Discounted DDRs at Searcys venue - What's New: London Venues Discounted DDRs at Searcys venue

Event bookers looking to hire The Commonwealth Club for a meeting during March can do so at a reduced day delegate rate of £50pp +VAT. For more details email the events team.

Teambuilding in Docklands - What's New: London Venues Teambuilding in Docklands

Business-focused hotel Crowne Plaza London Docklands, near ExCeL, has created a range of new teambuilding packages for groups. The Regal Package (£143.68pp) includes cable car tickets, a river cruise, clay-pigeon shooting, lunch, a meeting room and a three-course dinner. For something a little more high-octane, check out the venue’s Thrill Seeker Package (£59.00pp), which includes wake boarding on the Thames, zorbing, lunch and use of a meeting room.

New space unveiled at City livery hall - What's New: London Venues New space unveiled at City livery hall

To celebrate its 650th anniversary, Vintners’ Hall has announced the opening of The Court Room. Built in 1671, the space has only ever been used by the Vintners’ Company, but is now available for private hire.

Under the Bridge launches new events menu - What's New: London Venues Under the Bridge launches new events menu

Chelsea Football Club’s underground music venue has created a new menu for events, inspired by the latest foodie trends for slider burgers, chicken and doughnuts. The space can be hired exclusively for up to 600 guests.

Holi celebration offers at The Cinnamon Group - What's New: London Venues Holi celebration offers at The Cinnamon Group

Vivek Singh’s trio of modern restaurants is celebrating Holi, the Indian festival of colour, from 18-30 March. Five-course festival menus will commemorate the arrival of spring and the passing of winter. To claim a free Holi cocktail at any of the three restaurants, order two courses from the Holi menu and wear bright green to The Cinnamon Club, bright blue to Cinnamon Kitchen, and bright pink to Cinnamon Soho. Private dining is also available.

The Great Gatsby private screening deals - What's New: London Venues The Great Gatsby private screening deals

Rich Mix will be hosting private screenings of the much anticipated film The Great Gatsby from 17 May, with pre-cinema Champagne and canapé receptions available. To book one of the three screens, contact the events team.

Conference lunch offer at BMA House - What's New: London Venues Conference lunch offer at BMA House

The Grade II-listed venue in Bloomsbury is offering hot fork buffet lunches at £20.13pp until 28 March. Meeting rooms are available for groups of between two and 300 guests. Email the venue for details.

Open evening showcase event at Soho club & restaurant - What's New: London Venues Open evening showcase event at Soho club & restaurant

DSTRKT is hosting a showcase event on Wednesday 27 February, when event bookers can enjoy cocktails, canapés and a good look at the recently spruced-up spaces from 5-9pm. To attend, contact Emilee Alexson.

13% discount on private hire at riverside restaurant - What's New: London Venues 13% discount on private hire at riverside restaurant

Northbank, by the Millennium Bridge, is offering groups of over 25 guests a free glass of bubbly on arrival, plus a free bottle of wine for every 13 sold. There’s also 13% off private hire total spend until the end of the summer.

Reduced venue hire offer at Gillray's - What's New: London Venues Reduced venue hire offer at Gillray's

London Marriott County Hall’s newest restaurant Gillray's is offering a discount on private hire until the end of March. Exclusive use is now £5,000 +VAT, which includes use of its bar and restaurant for up to 120 guests.

HMS Belfast celebrates its 75th birthday - What's New: London Venues HMS Belfast celebrates its 75th birthday

All events on board HMS Belfast during the month of March will receive a complimentary celebration cake for each guest attending a daytime do and a free glass of Champagne per guest for any evening event.

New roof terrace at the Kia Oval - What's New: London Venues New roof terrace at the Kia Oval

A £250,000 roof terrace is being opened on top of the Kia Oval’s OCS Stand. The 400-capacity space will be open from March 2013.

Discounted room hire at the Gherkin - What's New: London Venues Discounted room hire at the Gherkin

Searcys | The Gherkin is offering reduced room hire for events taking place in March and April 2013. Exclusive use of the top two floors of the Gherkin for evening events will be available at £7,000 +VAT (a £2,500 +VAT discount), while reduced hire between 7.30-10am will cost £2,000 +VAT. Breakfast packages, including unlimited drinks with a Breakfast Club sandwich or croissants, will also be available for £20pp (minimum of 40 guests). For further details, email the sales team.

New outdoor projection at Rich Mix - What's New: London Venues New outdoor projection at Rich Mix

The large steel façade of Shoreditch’s Rich Mix is now available for outdoor projections. Corporate clients, artists and event organisers will be able to promote events on a large scale by hiring the wall space.

New Jamies Wine Bar - What's New: London Venues New Jamies Wine Bar

Kornicis Group is opening its latest Jamies Wine Bar and Restaurant in the West End this 27 February. The 150-cover restaurant will serve classic British food. There is also a large bar and private dining room.

Future Cinema teams up with Troxy - What's New: London Venues Future Cinema teams up with Troxy

The Grade II-listed Stepney venue is set to provide a permanent home for Future Cinema’s immersive screening experiences throughout 2013. Playing host to 90 screenings over the year, it opens with Casablanca on 14 February.

No hire fee at Juju Chelsea - What's New: London Venues No hire fee at Juju Chelsea

The glamorous venue on the Kings Road is offering groups the chance to book its Private Room for free. The 80-capacity also includes a complimentary bottle of Veuve Cliquot.

Wireless and Hard Rock Calling move to Olympic Park - What's New: London Venues Wireless and Hard Rock Calling move to Olympic Park

The London Legacy Development Corporation has confirmed that music promoter Live Nation will host a run of concerts and festivals at Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park this summer, ahead of its full opening in spring 2014. The deal gives Live Nation exclusive rights to hold major music concerts in the stadium in summer 2013. Wireless Festival and Hard Rock Calling have already been scheduled for July, having relocated from Hyde Park.

Burns Night with The Lord’s Taverners - What's New: London Venues Burns Night with The Lord’s Taverners

Ironmongers’ Hall, in the City, will be hosting The Lord’s Taverners charity Burns’ Night dinner on Wednesday 23 January. The black tie event starts at 6.30pm and tickets are priced at £105 per person.

Clipper launches new fleet - What's New: London Venues Clipper launches new fleet

Sailing day specialist Clipper Events has invested in 12 new, 70ft ocean racers. Designed by naval architect Tony Castro, the new Clipper 70s will be the world’s largest identical ocean-racing fleet. The boats are set to take part in the 2013-2014 Clipper Round-the-World Yacht Race and later will be available to groups for hospitality and teambuilding events. Clipper (based in Gosport) is showcasing its new vessels at St Katharine Docks from 12 to 20 January.

Burns night at Butchers' Hall - What's New: London Venues Burns night at Butchers' Hall

Christmas may be over but the celebrations just keep on going. Butchers’ Hall will be hosting a shared night to celebrate the great Scottish bard on 25 January. Groups can book tickets for a five-course meal with pipers, haggis and all the trimmings for £80pp.

Book an event and get fit   - What's New: London Venues Book an event and get fit

The overindulgence that comes with the Christmas party season may not have reached its peak yet, but Coin Street is thinking ahead. Book an event at the South Bank venue between 2 and 11 January and receive a free three-day pass for its gym in the Columbo Centre in Southwark

Shiny new kitchen for Senate House   - What's New: London Venues Shiny new kitchen for Senate House

Shiny new kitchen for Senate House The Bloomsbury venue has just completed a £600,000 refurbishment of its kitchen. The renovation aims to increase the service speed, menu choice and quality of food at the listed building, as well as increasing the seated capacities to 350 in the Beveridge Hall, 240 in the Macmillan Hall and 120 in the Chancellor’s Hall.

New exhibition in the Natural History Museum  - What's New: London Venues New exhibition in the Natural History Museum

Having been opened by none other than the Duchess of Cambridge, the Natural History Museum’s new Treasures exhibition is ready for viewing. The display is located in the Cadogan Gallery and can be seen in conjunction with private events held in the 700-capacity Central Hall. Within the retrospective are 22 specially selected specimens, spanning 4.5 billion years of nature, each with its own story to tell. Expect to see the dinosaur teeth that led to the discovery that the giant reptiles once walked on Earth, as well as the first edition of Darwin’s ‘On the Origin of Species’.

Sushi & sake offer at Inamo  - What's New: London Venues Sushi & sake offer at Inamo

The St James’ restaurant has teamed up with Mastercard to offer sushi and sake masterclasses. The sessions, which groups can book on any afternoon or evening, see guests learning how sake is made (and tasting some of it, of course) in one of the restaurant’s PDRs, before heading to the kitchen for a how-to in crafting perfect sushi. A 90-minute class usually costs £25pp but, as Inamo is feeling full of festive cheer, there’s a 20% discount on all bookings between now and the end of January.

Taj reveals new Bollywood-inspired suite  - What's New: London Venues Taj reveals new Bollywood-inspired suite

Inspired by the golden age of cinema and created by acclaimed Indian designer Sabyasachi Mukherjee, the new Cinema Suite at 51 Buckingham Gate Taj Suites & Residences combines vintage design with modern facilities. The 1,832 sq ft suite, decorated with film posters and Asian artefacts, comprises two bedrooms, a study, powder room, kitchen, dining room, plus a lounge with a 85-inch plasma TV and 3D home theatre system. Use it to host private screenings with dinner for up to eight guests.

Interactive dance-off game for events  - What's New: London Venues Interactive dance-off game for events

Check out this new bit of interactive kit from event techies Luma. YrMoves sees two dancers competing against one another for points by throwing their best moves in front of an augmented reality screen. A depth camera tracks the wannabe Travolta’s movements, while LED moving head lights, smoke and strobe effects create a night club environment. We’re going to give it some ‘Tried and tested’ treatment soon, so we’ll let you know how we get on.

New caterers at The Chelsea Gardener  - What's New: London Venues New caterers at The Chelsea Gardener

The Chelsea Gardener has appointed Bubble Food as one of its preferred caterers. It’s a fitting partnership, given that Bubble’s molecular menus include a number of floral-inspired dishes such as gold lavender jellies.

New venue on Portman Square - What's New: London Venues New venue on Portman Square

Happy birthday Mr Churchill! And what better way to toast the big man himself than with a drink at the Hyatt Regency Churchill’s eponymous new bar? The venue, which opens today, takes inspiration from all aspects of the former PM’s life, with decor that draws on his love for art, travel and animals, plus a cosy cigar terrace – a nod to one of his most famous vices. Alongside the list of fine whiskies and Champagne (Churchill’s other weaknesses) is the bar’s own brew of Churchill Craft Gin, used in signature cocktails that are mixed under the watchful eye of Alex B Cook, former bar manager at The Ritz. While the space can’t be hired exclusively yet, groups can reserve the six-seater Snug, where they can enjoy platters of smoked salmon and oysters.

Mayfair masterclasses  - What's New: London Venues Mayfair masterclasses

Ever wanted a glimpse behind the scenes at London’s top restaurants? Mayfair stalwart Corrigan’s is offering groups just that with its cookery lessons, to be held once a month from 1 December. The £250pp price includes a Champagne reception before your lesson, followed by a four-course lunch of the food you’ve prepared with matching wines, and a souvenir goodie bag. Meanwhile, Richard Corrigan’s other London restaurant, Bentley’s, is hosting cigar nights on its terrace. Each masterclass will showcase a different Cuban cigar, which will be paired with a specially selected whiskey, rum or sweet wine and canapés. Tickets cost £35pp and the next event is 5 December.

Winter alfresco in Chelsea  - What's New: London Venues Winter alfresco in Chelsea

This month, the glamorous Winter Bar opens in the Courtyard at Bluebird. The pop-up space has been designed by Conran & Company so you can expect a polished look. Filled with cosy seating areas and flickering tea lights, the heated structure can hold up to 50 guests for a reception. Serve Moet & Chandon Champagne and classic cocktails along with snacks from the restaurant, or warm your cockles with a glass of mulled wine. The venue will be available until 2 January

A night at the museums - Event Reviews & Venue Focus A night at the museums

The Natural History Museum, V&A and Science Museum joined forces to showcase their talents and their suppliers.

New event space in King’s Cross - What's New: London Venues New event space in King’s Cross

King’s Place has opened its Art Gallery for events this autumn. The space, which renews its exhibits every eight weeks, comprises an intimate gallery and large open balcony. The enclosed gallery is ideal for a private sit-down dinner for 60 guests or cocktail receptions for 100. The balcony works for larger functions, holding up to 400 standing guests or 120 for dinner.

Group dining this Thanksgiving  - What's New: London Venues Group dining this Thanksgiving

Whether you’re homesick for the great US of A or have an early hankering for turkey, Thanksgiving (22 November) is just the holiday to feed those cravings. You don’t need to cross the pond to take advantage of a good old-fashioned American feast. Grab a group, get your elasticated waistbands and forks ready, and dig into one of London’s Thanksgiving menus.

Winter alfresco  - What's New: London Venues Winter alfresco

‘There’s no such thing as bad weather, only inappropriate clothing,’ said someone, who might have been Billy Connelly and might have been Sir Ranulph Fiennes. Whoever it was, we applaud the sentiment. This year when the mercury drops, instead of diving for cover, we’ll be sipping hot cocktails under sheepskin rugs at one of London’s increasing number of alfresco spaces.

Faster broadband at Church House  - What's New: London Venues Faster broadband at Church House

Church House Conference Centre has invested in faster internet connection for events. The installation of a 100MB per second broadband line follows a £100,000 refurb, which saw the venue’s AV equipment and furniture updated.

New opening - InterContinental Westminster - What's New: London Venues New opening - InterContinental Westminster

SW1 will be welcoming a new five-star neighbour at the end of the month, courtesy of the team at InterContinental. Located on Broadway near St James’s tube, the hotel clearly has business events in mind, with free Wi-Fi throughout and eight meeting spaces seating 10 to 300 delegates. V&E had a pre-opening tour of the venue last week and loved look of the 24-seater PDR in The Blue Boar Smokehouse & Bar, a space that can also be split to suit two groups of 12. The restaurant’s bar area is well set up for intimate gatherings with a private drinks space and alcove-style seating. Our pick of the bunch, though, was the dramatically designed Emmeline’s space – complete with a mural of St James’s park – which can be hired exclusively, holding up to 70 for a drinks reception. Keep an eye out for the hotel’s provocative art collection too – the sculpture of Tony Blair with weapons of mass destruction in his eyes is likely to turn heads.

Private dining for Diwali  - What's New: London Venues Private dining for Diwali

One of the most important Hindu festivals, Diwali (from 13 November) – known as The Festival of Lights – celebrates the victory of good over evil and light over darkness. It’s a time when families and friends come together over a big meal, so it seems fitting to take the opportunity to get a group together and indulge in one of the many special menus available in Indian restaurants across town. Here’s our selection of PDRs embracing the spirit of Diwali.

Free internet for all  - What's New: London Venues Free internet for all

Guoman Hotels we salute you. The portfolio of central London properties has announced that it will be offering free Wi-Fi for all guests and visitors, which gets a big thumbs up from us. Wireless internet is available in all the bedrooms, public spaces and function rooms of venues including The Royal Horseguards, The Cumberland and Charing Cross Hotel.

Snag a sausage  - What's New: London Venues Snag a sausage

We at V&E HQ make no secret of the fact that we love sausages, so we’re welcoming National Sausage Week (5-11 Nov) with forks at the ready. Apparently we aren’t the only fans – as a country we chomp through 200,000 tons of them a year. If you want to dish up a tasty chipolata or two at your event, The Great British Sausage company will set up its 12ft barbecue (come rain or shine) and cook award-winning bangers for up to 5,000 guests. All its produce is handmade from organic pork, reared on Knebworth Estate in Hertfordshire.

Speakeasy on Goodge Street - What's New: London Venues Speakeasy on Goodge Street

Bourne and Hollingsworth has opened Reverend J W Simpson, its new underground cocktail bar in Fitzrovia. The Prohibition-style venue mixes shabby chic, kitsch decor with high-end furnishings and glassware, and there’s a strong focus on the quality of the cocktails. The intimate space will work well for private drinks receptions – it holds up to 50 standing guests.

Remember remember the fifth of November… - What's New: London Venues Remember remember the fifth of November…

…Gun powder, treason and plot. Or how about fireworks, hotdogs and sparklers? Next Monday, London’s skyline will be alight in an explosion of pyrotechnics. Rather than huddling together in a crowd of strangers, watch the displays from the comfort of an indoor event space. Check out our picks here.

Brompton Brands new venue  - What's New: London Venues Brompton Brands new venue

Nightclub power-duo Nick House and Piers Adam have brought a slice of Austria to Kensington with the opening of their new venue Bodo’s Schloss. The restaurant, bar and disco holds up to 350 guests for a reception.

New galleries at the Wellcome Collection   - What's New: London Venues New galleries at the Wellcome Collection

The Euston Road venue has announced plans for a £17.5m development that will see its event space increase dramatically. A new gallery, the expansion of old ones and a spiral staircase to interconnect them, as well as a new restaurant, are all part of the project. The spaces, which are set for completion in 2014, will be available to hire for evening receptions and can be used together with other function rooms, such as the tiered auditorium.

New venue for Chelsea FC   - What's New: London Venues New venue for Chelsea FC

Chelsea Football Club has launched a new event space in its Millennium & Copthorne Hotel. The Delta 360 Lounge, sponsored by the American airline, has its own entrance, bar and dining area, as well as TV screens. It will be used for events for up to 50 guests on non-match days and for VIP hospitality on match days.

Beers with Bond - Event Reviews & Venue Focus Beers with Bond

Team V&E attended Heineken's exclusive Skyfall screening party.

James Bond's London - What's New: London Venues James Bond's London

With the most anticipated film of the year out now, we look to James Bond’s London for inspiration for a 007-style event.

New opening for etc. venues - What's New: London Venues New opening for etc. venues

Tenter House at 45 Moorfields in the City is the latest offering from conference specialist etc. venues. Metres away from Moorgate tube, the venue offers 14 naturally lit rooms – the largest holding 70 seated delegates.

Pop-up winter cinema at Hush Mayfair  - What's New: London Venues Pop-up winter cinema at Hush Mayfair

Alfresco film screenings aren't just for summer. Wrapped up in a blanket with a mug of hot chocolate for warmth, you can enjoy outdoor cinema on the frostiest of night – and Hush Mayfair is offering groups the chance to do just that. Its pop-up 'Classics in the Courtyard' series is running from 31 October until the beginning of March, kicking off the season with Scream on Halloween. Book a table and settle down to a good movie, a Winter Warmer cocktail and pack of gourmet popcorn, or choose dinner from the full à la carte menu. Tickets are £10pp, excluding food and drink.

Early breakfast meetings - What's New: London Venues Early breakfast meetings

Judging from the 8am turnout at Fortnum & Mason last week, breakfast is the new power lunch. The department store’s elegant Fountain Restaurant is now open from 7am for early bird business meetings.

Hollywood Costume at the V&A - What's New: London Venues Hollywood Costume at the V&A

The V&A hosted a dinner to celebrate the opening of the museum's new exhibition Hollywood Costume on 15 October. The exhibition will open on 20 October.

Michelin star cooking at Innholders’ Hall   - What's New: London Venues Michelin star cooking at Innholders’ Hall

Following head chef roles at 1 Lombard Street, Claridge's and Café Royal, Herbert Berger - responsible for gaining a Michelin star three times during his career - has taken over the catering at Innholders' Hall.

Vinopolis reopens after  refurb - What's New: London Venues Vinopolis reopens after refurb

Vinopolis has reopened its doors following a multi-million pound refurbishment that’s made its Wine Experience even better for teambuilding. Packages start from £27pp.

New restaurant in EC3  - What's New: London Venues New restaurant in EC3

This month sees a fresh new opening from City institution 1 Lombard Street. On 22 October, 1776 will open its doors in what used to be the venue’s dining room. The 55-seater restaurant is set behind the brasserie, with its own entrance on Mansion House Place and decor that draws on the history of the building, with crystal chandeliers, large windows and banquette seating. The a la carte menu focuses on modern British dishes with global influences.

Private dining rooms in W1 - What's New: London Venues Private dining rooms in W1

Late Night London’s Grace Bar has just emerged from a full refurbishment of its restaurant and event spaces. Three new private dining rooms have been added, each with its own quirky design and space for between 10 and 16 guests. The main bar area has also been given a new look, with crystal chandeliers and vintage wallpaper, while the Cocoa Club has been fitted with comfy new booths.

New hotel for Aldwych - What's New: London Venues New hotel for Aldwych

Next month sees the opening of the ME London in Aldwych. Brought to us by the trend-setting Spanish hotel chain ME by Melia, the property will include a whole crop exciting event spaces, including a wraparound roof terrace, designed by Foster & Partners, which will hold up to 140 guests for drinks receptions. Also on offer will be a two-storey event suite for 20 with its own entrance to the terrace, a 16-seater private dining room in the hotel’s STK restaurant, and seven meeting rooms with space for up to 200 delegates.

Burger classes in Marylebone and the City  - What's New: London Venues Burger classes in Marylebone and the City

London’s two L’atelier des Chefs cookery schools have just announced a programme of 16 new classes, including a bang-on-trend burger-making course. Make like Meat Liquor and serve up perfect patties after taking part in one of the fast-paced sessions, which are available to book in 30, 60 and 90 minute varieties. Among the other new courses for groups are cupcake baking, bread making and French patisserie.

Open day at Waterloo venue  - What's New: London Venues Open day at Waterloo venue

London’s most sustainable venue 15 Hatfields is hosting a showcase on 30 October from 6pm. Organisers are invited to check out the event spaces, as well as sample canapés by Square Meal Canapé Cup winners Eden Catering and enjoy a glass of English sparkling wine. To RSVP, email Matilda.

New sustainable venue in east London  - What's New: London Venues New sustainable venue in east London

After much anticipation, The Crystal opened to the public last weekend in Royal Victoria Docks. The multi-million pound development includes exhibition space, two auditoriums with space for up to 276 delegates, as well as offices and a café, with catering by Sodexo Prestige. Designed by Wilkinson Eyre Architects, the glass-structure is one of the world’s most sustainable, using solar power, focusing on locally sourced food and adopting a zero-waste policy.

New venue in St Paul’s - What's New: London Venues New venue in St Paul’s

The owners of Hush Mayfair have revealed plans to open a new brasserie in St Paul’s by summer next year. This will be the third site from the restaurant group, following the launch of Hush Holborn (pictured) in June. The 140-cover venue will be based at 1 St Paul’s, a new development containing 60,000sq ft of new offices. Full details are yet to be released but we do know it will be open all day and is being designed by Alex Michaelis of Michaelis Boyd, who worked on the group’s other two properties.

Remodelled 30 Pavilion Road opens its doors - What's New: London Venues Remodelled 30 Pavilion Road opens its doors

Searcy’s celebrated a £500,000 revamp of its reception spaces this September, with a showcase at the handsome Knightsbridge townhouse. The Georgian features have been slicked up throughout – with the corporate market in mind – and there’s a smart new bar upstairs. The rolling refurbishment will now take on the upstairs bedrooms and 70-capacity roof terrace, set for completion in 2013.

Large new venue for the City  - What's New: London Venues Large new venue for the City

The building may have been around for 200 years but Tobacco Dock has only recently become available for private hire. Situated just a few minutes away from Tower Bridge and one stop from Bank Underground station, the venue has over 50 characterful rooms – the largest holding up to 2,000 guests – and so is able to cater for just about any event you can dream up. It is hosting an open day on 11 October: to register your interest, email your details with ‘invite’ in the subject line.

AVEQIA launches in Farringdon   - What's New: London Venues AVEQIA launches in Farringdon

An interactive Swedish restaurant and cooking school has just opened in Farringdon. The venue brings a new concept in group dining to London, which sees groups of up to 12 prepare four-course menus alongside Michelin-starred chefs, before enjoying the food in the kitchen’s adjoining dining rooms. Also on site is a Food Studio, with space for up to 80 for a reception, as well as a bar, which is used for wine and Champagne tastings.

South Place launches Angler restaurant & PDR  - What's New: London Venues South Place launches Angler restaurant & PDR

The hip new hotel near Liverpool Street is now fully open, following the launch of F&B options including an all-day brasserie, sheltered garden bar and top floor restaurant. V&E tried fine-diner Angler last night and loved its fish-focused menu. The likes of scallop and lobster ravioli, ray wing with brown butter and slow-roast brill are best enjoyed at the 10-seater semi-private Chef’s View table, which overlooks the Gherkin and Tower 42.

Southbank roof-top venue will run for five more years - What's New: London Venues Southbank roof-top venue will run for five more years

The National Theatre’s roof-top venue The Deck has announced that it has been granted planning permission to run for another five years. The ultra-modern event space was designed in 2006 to make the most of its front row views of the Thames. Its retractable glass walls make it popular with summer entertaining, but it works just as well in winter – particularly for Christmas parties – and has a wedding licence for up to 120 guests.

Eden Caterers scoop the Canapé Cup - What's New: London Venues Eden Caterers scoop the Canapé Cup

Sustainable catering bastion Eden . has taken home the Canapé Cup at this year’s Venues and Events show 2012 at Old Billingsgate in the City. Its winning bite, the Hansel and Gretel-inspired Black and Blue, was made of Kentish blackberries, Oxford Blue cheese, hazelnut praline in a London honey – made using their own bees – and sugar spun caramel, as decoration. Runners up were new comer The Brewery and the ever-popular Cinnamon Soho .

Bentley’s launches at Harrods - What's New: London Venues Bentley’s launches at Harrods

Harrods Food Halls welcome another big name: Bentley’s Sea Grill. It’s good news for those keen to hire – the store’s ‘Dine Around’ concept allows them to select which concessions do the catering.

The Electric to reopen in November - What's New: London Venues The Electric to reopen in November

Restaurant and cinema Electric House in Notting Hill will be reopening its doors just five months after the venue was destroyed by fire. The extent of the damage caused means the venue will have to be completely refurbished. The good news is the private members’ spot will come back better than ever, with a redesign of the brasserie, a restoration of the screen room and a brand new bar and terrace.

Kaiser Chiefs at Cheltenham - What's New: London Venues Kaiser Chiefs at Cheltenham

Cheltenham Racecourse will play host to the Kaiser Chiefs, who will play in the venue’s 4,000 standing capacity on 21 February 2013. Tickets will go on sale at 9am on Wednesday 29 August.

Cocktail classes in the City this September - What's New: London Venues Cocktail classes in the City this September

City-based bar and restaurants, The Folly and The Drift are offering groups mixology classes. Guests will have a chance to try their hand at perfecting three cocktails. Classes cost from £25 per person.

New venue in the Millbank Tower - What's New: London Venues New venue in the Millbank Tower

Altitude London at Millbank Tower has launched Skyloft, its new pop-up space, available for private hire until the beginning of 2013. The whole floor holds 600 guests for a standing reception or 270 guests for dinner.

Exclusive DDR for Square Meal  - What's New: London Venues Exclusive DDR for Square Meal

Crowne Plaza London Docklands has announced a special rate for Venues & Events readers. Prices start from £39pp, just make sure you quote ‘Square Meal’ when booking.

Book ahead  for private screenings of Bond  - What's New: London Venues Book ahead for private screenings of Bond

Watch the latest Bond film Skyfall on 26 October in a private screening at the Aubin Cinema. Up to 46 guests can sit back and enjoy the movie, from the comfort of the theatre’s luxurious sofas and armchairs. Then head down the road to Shoreditch House for a Martini (shaken, not stirred) and a game of bowling in the Biscuit Tin.

Alfresco space to hire on the South Bank  - What's New: London Venues Alfresco space to hire on the South Bank

Adjacent to the Riverside Walkway on the South Bank is a 600sq m site available for hire throughout the Olympic period. The grass-covered space overlooks the Thames and would lend itself to styling as an English garden or riverside beach for entertaining. There is also space for a marquee in case of rain. Prices start from £5,000 +VAT.

‘Hollywood Costumes’ at the Victoria & Albert  - What's New: London Venues ‘Hollywood Costumes’ at the Victoria & Albert

This autumn, the V&A will bring a touch of glamour to Exhibition Road. From 20 October, the museum will display more than 100 iconic costumes from cinema – from the genre’s golden age to the newest releasea. Among the collection will be the pinafore Judy Garland wore in The Wizard of Oz, Scarlett O’Hara’s green ‘curtain’ dress from Gone with the Wind, Johnny Depp’s outfit from Pirates of the Caribbean and Peter Parker’s Lycra suit from Spiderman. Private viewings of the exhibition cost from £9000 +VAT.

one in five free on Guoman DDR - What's New: London Venues one in five free on Guoman DDR

Guoman Hotels and the Thistle group are offering one free delegate for every five when booking a meeting at any of its 37 venues. The offer applies to delegates on daily or 24-hour packages and free Wi-Fi is included.

The Hippodrome is open - What's New: London Venues The Hippodrome is open

The London Hippodrome, on Leicester Square, is now open. The £40m Grade II-listed casino includes a restaurant, two bars and a host of private dining rooms, event spaces and private gambling rooms.

V&E summer issue: read it here - What's New: London Venues V&E summer issue: read it here

Hello. Just a quick one from the V&E team to say the Venues & Events summer issue is out and if it isn’t already sitting on your desk, it will be soon. In this issue, we celebrate the arrival of the London 2012 Olympics with a look at the best hospitality options, zip around the capital’s new hotel openings and even squeeze in a quick chat with Mayor Boris. If you fancy a quick flick straight away, check it out here.

Ballgowns at the V&A - Event Reviews & Venue Focus Ballgowns at the V&A

The V& A’s revamped Fashion Galleries hosted a private view of the ‘Ball gowns: British Glamour Since 1950’ exhibition, as part of Mastercard’s Priceless London event programme. Click here for the event review.

South Bank Centre PDR – on the roof - What's New: London Venues South Bank Centre PDR – on the roof

The Southbank is welcoming The Cube by Electrolux this summer. Positioned atop the Royal Festival Hall from June to September, the 18-seat private dining space will offer views across the Thames.

Light show at 8 Northumberland  - What's New: London Venues Light show at 8 Northumberland

Lighting specialist amBX has teamed up with 8 Northumberland to offer a permanent interactive lighting system. Organisers now have the power to light its Old Billiard Room to any colours best suiting an event.

New offering from Bateaux London - What's New: London Venues New offering from Bateaux London

Having sailed over from Copenhagen, the MV Harmony, Bateaux London’s latest addition, is making its maiden Thames voyage this June. The Scandinavian-designed boat features a 250sq m open deck (the fleet’s largest) and will hold up to 200 guests for dinner or up to 300 guests for a reception. For a more intimate event, her bespoke private dining rooms are ideal for parties of 12, 20 and 30 guests.

Chefs in the City - What's New: London Venues Chefs in the City

The international cookery school has opened an event-friendly venue in the City. Unlike its older brother on Wigmore Street, the Foster Lane venue has a dedicated conference room, seating up to 20 delegates.

Free fizz at Incognico - What's New: London Venues Free fizz at Incognico

The classic Parisian-style brasserie Incognico is offering guests a free glass of prosecco when booking the venue’s party menu or a free glass of Champagne when ordering the a la carte party menu.

De Vere Venues opening in Birmingham - What's New: London Venues De Vere Venues opening in Birmingham

A brand new meeting and training venue has opened in Birmingham, in the shape of De Vere Venues Colmore Gate. There are 18 meeting rooms, the largest of which has capacity for a 150 delegates.

50 years of Bond Style at Barbican - What's New: London Venues 50 years of Bond Style at Barbican

The Barbican is marking 50 years of James Bond films with an exhibition of the franchise’s most memorable paraphernalia. Groups can book private viewings with hospitality from 6 July to 5 September and its £195pp +VAT.

Wedding Industry Awards - What's New: London Venues Wedding Industry Awards

Following the success of The Wedding Industry Awards launch this year, the organisers have announced the opening of the 2013 entry process. There are five new categories for you to vote for. For more info, click here.

Our Spring issue and Weddings special are out - What's New: London Venues Our Spring issue and Weddings special are out

So here they are – our two latest magazines. Our Venues & Events Spring issue of offers a stack of advice on making the most of this special summer and there’s the latest events and hospitality news. What you might not have been expecting is our first-ever Square Meal Weddings magazine. Here you’ll find a comprehensive look at the latest trends and venues, with some handy practical guides too.

Our Spring issue and Weddings special are out - What's New: London Venues Our Spring issue and Weddings special are out

Our Venues & Events Spring issue offers a stack of advice on making the most of this special summer. What you might not have been expecting is our first-ever Square Meal Weddings magazine. Check them out.

Sake & sushi masterclasses  - What's New: London Venues Sake & sushi masterclasses

Inamo St James, has teamed up with Mastercard offering sushi and sake masterclasses, available for groups. The sessions are bookable on any afternoon or evening and it’s £25pp and classes last 90 minutes.

London Zoo opens Penguin Beach for events - What's New: London Venues London Zoo opens Penguin Beach for events

The penguins at London Zoo have been kind enough to allow events beside their pool. Penguin Beach is available for barbecues or drinks receptions from 6.30pm to 9.30pm. Packages include a private penguin show and the chance for up to 12 guests to meet the waddling locals. The zoo’s resident meerkats and armadillos are open to a meet and greet too, which works well as a breakout activity.

Vanilla open new-look space - What's New: London Venues Vanilla open new-look space

BEST known as a restaurant and evening event space, Vanilla has now moved into daytime hire, offering a trendy location for business meetings of up to 30. A cool LED lighting system allows you to choose the room’s hue and there’s a brand new sound system in there too, ensuring delegates can hear those motivational speeches.

Kensington Palace makeover - What's New: London Venues Kensington Palace makeover

World-famous royal residence Kensington Palace has been given a £12m refurbishment, with a whole new event space now on offer. The Hub on the ground floor (reception capacity 300) has a clean, contemporary style, contrasting dramatically with the rest of the historic venue. New exhibitions Victoria Revealed and Jubilee – a View from the Crowd, will also be available for private viewings.

New exhibition at The Tower - What's New: London Venues New exhibition at The Tower

The Tower of London has announced the opening of a new exhibition of the world-famous Crown Jewels. The Jewel House can be booked for drinks receptions or private viewings, with space for up to 80 guests.

Gow's Restaurant re-opens  - What's New: London Venues Gow's Restaurant re-opens

Late Night London’s Gow’s Restaurant in the city is relaunching this week, following a light redecoration. As part of the revamp, the 200-year-old restaurant will be offering a new menu, focusing on locally sourced, fresh fish.

Fourth-floor refurbishment at The Hospital Club - What's New: London Venues Fourth-floor refurbishment at The Hospital Club

Creative industry hang out The Hospital Club has reopened its fourth floor, following a three-week revamp. Non-members can book private events in The Loft Lounge – formerly the Games Room – for receptions for up to 60 guests. Also part of the refurb is the 12-seater Chalk Room, a great space for blue-sky meetings or intimate dinners. On the ground-floor the Gallery will be hosting the $40 and a Stratocaster: Henrdrix in London exhibition, which celebrates the icon’s time in the city and the effect it had on his music. The display is open for private viewings, suiting groups of up to 100 guests.

New-look dining space at Soho House - What's New: London Venues New-look dining space at Soho House

Soho House has refurbished its Dining Room. The space, which is available to non-members, will seat 20 guests on a long table or 42 over three tables. To accompany the refurbishment, there is a new menus.

Art meets food at Sketch - What's New: London Venues Art meets food at Sketch

Turner Prize winning artist Martin Creed has transformed the Gallery restaurant at Sketch, blurring the boundaries between the venue’s menu, design and functionality. There’s room for 250 standing guests.

Events twitter directory - What's New: London Venues Events twitter directory

Eventprofsindex.com launched this week, offering the industry a directory of event professionals on twitter. To get listed alongside @squaremealvande and other industry tweeters, click here.

Teambuilding at Lord’s - What's New: London Venues Teambuilding at Lord’s

The Home of Cricket has launched a teambuilding package, offering groups access to the world-class facilities at the venue. Delegates will have the chance to get involved in indoor cricket net sessions.

5-a-side packages near Wembley - What's New: London Venues 5-a-side packages near Wembley

Arsenal goalkeeper Wojchiech Szczęsny was at Wembley this week to kick off Powerleague’s corporate events programme for 2012. Combine a tournament with a lunch or dinner event at Wembley Stadium.

Looking for wedding venue? - What's New: London Venues Looking for wedding venue?

As we suspected, wedding fever has struck the capital in the wake of Valentine’s Day this week. With showcases popping up all over the place, we’ve compiled a list of our favourites coming up in spring. Check it out here.

Minster Exchange revamp - What's New: London Venues Minster Exchange revamp

The conference facilities at Balls Brothers Minster Exchange have had a facelift to the tune of £250,000. The 250-seater Minster Suite can now be split into three separate spaces for smaller events.

Design Museum moves west  - What's New: London Venues Design Museum moves west

The Design Museum has announced plans to move to the Grade II*-listed Commonwealth Institute in Kensington. Its early days though – it opens for events in 2014 and bookings will be taken starting next year.

1 Lombard Street  reveals refurbished interiors  - What's New: London Venues 1 Lombard Street reveals refurbished interiors

City institution 1 Lombard Street threw open its doors to press on Tuesday to show off its freshly spruced-up brasserie and bar. Elegant oak panelling, art-deco mirrors and striking modern art light up the handsome room. A new all-day bar menu accompanies the restaurant’s signature modern European dishes. Now you can enjoy a glass of Champagne or an expertly made Martini at the bar, or take one of the group-friendly booths for a casual lunch meeting.

Book and unwind at Cheltenham - What's New: UK Venues Book and unwind at Cheltenham

Organisers booking meetings at the famous Cotswold racecourse will be treated to one of a range of spa treatments, courtesy of Ellenborough Park hotel. The deal is available for bookings of 30 or more delegates.

Ascot smartens up - What's New: London Venues Ascot smartens up

The world’s most famous racecourse has updated its dress code ready for the 2012 Royal Meeting (19-23 June). Ladies must now wear hats or headpieces in the Royal Enclosure and Gents must sport black shoes and a tie with morning dress.

Wii breakouts at Church House - What's New: London Venues Wii breakouts at Church House

Warming up for The Games, the Grade II-listed conference centre in Westminster is offering delegates the chance to play Wii Olympics 2012 in breakout sessions throughout meeting days.

KP Virtual hospitality tours - What's New: London Venues KP Virtual hospitality tours

Organisers can take a 360˚ virtual tour of the hospitality on offer at some of the UK’s most iconic sport venues thanks to Keith Prowse. Facilities at Wimbledon and Lord's are among the venues that can be explored.

Tom Aikens re-opens  - What's New: London Venues Tom Aikens re-opens

The new year brings a modern new look for Tom Aikens’ eponymous Chelsea restaurant. After six months of closure, the doors opened last week to reveal a pared-back dining space complete with 12-seater PDR.

West London gourmet cinema - What's New: London Venues West London gourmet cinema

For corporate screenings where a pack of Jelly Babies just won’t do, Odeon is offering a mid-movie gourmet menu at its new-look Whiteley’s cinema in Bayswater. Teaming up with Rowley Leigh (chef-patron at neighbour Le Café Anglais), the cinema is offering the in-seat meal service in each of its five screens, with waiter service available at the touch of a button.

Exclusive Tom Aikens preview - What's New: London Venues Exclusive Tom Aikens preview

Be the first to see the famous chef’s newly refurbished Chelsea restaurant ahead of its public opening next year. From now until 23 December, groups of between six and 30 guests can enjoy set menus from £48pp

Bloomsbury Big Top opens - What's New: London Venues Bloomsbury Big Top opens

London’s largest temporary Christmas venue opened its doors for the season with a Cirque de Noel-themed showcase party this week. Read all about its impressive catering and entertainment programme here.

ITA launches exclusive wine packages - What's New: London Venues ITA launches exclusive wine packages

It’s the Agency has teamed up with Master of Wine Isabelle Legeron to offer wine packages exclusive to the agency’s venues. Packages on offer include a Wine Tasting Reception, where guests try 12 selected bottles and the Wine Games, which incorporate blind tastings and trivia. There are also Tutored Tastings for guests keen to gain a greater knowledge of wine and a Food & Wine Matching package with lunch or dinner.

UK's greenest hotels - What's New: London Venues UK's greenest hotels

QHotels can give itself a tap on the back, ranking as the top hotel group in the latest Carbon League Table. The company is now second only to Center Parks in hospitality companies ranked in 2011/2012.

Canapés on cue - What's New: London Venues Canapés on cue

Moving Venue has launched a canapé delivery service, aimed at companies wishing to hold informal events in their offices. Orders are supplied within a two-hour timeslot and deliveries to London addresses are free.

Bubble Food showcase at Somerset House - What's New: London Venues Bubble Food showcase at Somerset House

It seems we’re all about molecular food of late. Hot on the heels of last week’s Heston Blumenthal-endorsed party at Royal Albert Hall, the team was invited to try some typically outré creations by event caterer Bubble Food, who served up pick-your-own canapés in a Halloween tree, ahead of dinner in a cloud-themed dining room. The black truffle risotto mousse was our favourite. Full event review here.

Meet on the Strand - What's New: London Venues Meet on the Strand

The Strand Palace Hotel’s Conference & Events Centre refurbishment is now complete. Its state-of-the-art facilities comprise of 11 meeting rooms, accommodating groups of 15 to 200. View all the latest images here.

After-work treats near Monument - What's New: London Venues After-work treats near Monument

Jamies wine bar on St Mary at Hill, just off Eastcheap, is offering great deals on food and drinks between 5-7pm, Monday to Friday.

Royal Albert Hall celebrates partnership with "rhubarb" - What's New: London Venues Royal Albert Hall celebrates partnership with "rhubarb"

The Royal Albert Hall hosted a fittingly glamorous gathering this week to celebrate its partnership with event caterer “rhubarb”. The V&E team, never shy of a little glitz, were invited to sample some of “rhubarb’s” latest creations – the liquid-nitrogen-poached Gin Fizz was a highlight. We were also delighted to bump in to Heston Blumenthal, who has recently begun working with the caterer. Find out what he had to say here.

The Ultimate Experience back at The HAC - What's New: London Venues The Ultimate Experience back at The HAC

Established event organiser The Ultimate Experience has scored a further three-year tenancy at The Artillery Garden at The HAC. The contract with the 2,000-capacity, City-based venue includes the summer and Christmas seasons, typically playing host to high-profile hospitality, fund raising and staff entertainment events. Next year will see the summer season at the venue extended until August for the London 2012 Olympics.

Livery Room reopens at Pewterers' Hall - What's New: London Venues Livery Room reopens at Pewterers' Hall

The Livery Room at Pewterers’ Hall has reopened after a £250,000 refurbishment. The revamp combines traditional craft techniques with state-of-the-art lighting and audio visual solutions.

Glaziers Hall takes on Mosimann's - What's New: London Venues Glaziers Hall takes on Mosimann's

Glaziers Hall has added the award-winning caterer Mosimann’s London to its preferred supplier list in good time for the 2012 Olympics, when the venue will play host to chef Anton Mosimann’s home country Switzerland.

Corinthia opens second restaurant  - What's New: London Venues Corinthia opens second restaurant

This week saw the official launch of Northall, a 185-cover British restaurant with two handy private spaces. Read more about this and this London’s other hot openings in our Restaurant Roundup.

New event furniture from Velvet Living  - What's New: London Venues New event furniture from Velvet Living

If it’s good enough for Prince William, it’s definitely good enough for us. Furniture rental company Velvet Living has launched a new range & this summer it was spotted at a dinner for the future King’s charity, ARK. Among the products are Linear Light Bars & Infinity Seating, both of which can be slotted together to create never-ending bars & sofas. Also fresh from the design factory is the colourful Tic Tac collection - lime green & orange poufs, just the ticket to brighten up any event space.

The Cinnamon Kitchen scores hat-trick  - What's New: London Venues The Cinnamon Kitchen scores hat-trick

Head chef Abdul Yaseen beat off stiff competition to win the prize for best canapé at our recent Canapé Cup, for the third year in a row. To see pictures from the event, visit our Facebook page

Saatchi Gallery: open to events - What's New: London Venues Saatchi Gallery: open to events

The Saatchi Gallery is to be completely art free for a short time during October and November this year and is available to bespoke events in its 12 gallery spaces. Call 020 8968 9331 to book.

Venues & Events 2011 - Thanks for coming! - What's New: London Venues Venues & Events 2011 - Thanks for coming!

We’re delighted to announce that for the seventh year running, the Venues & Events exhibition has again reported growth, this time showing a 12% increase in visitors. The show was undoubtedly the best yet, with the new-look terrace a huge hit with guests and exhibitors reporting that the calibre of guests was better than ever. Thanks to all 7,821 of you that came along. See you next year!

Day one of the show  - What's New: London Venues Day one of the show

The stands are built, the visitors are streaming in and Old Billingsgate looks better than ever for the 2011 Square Meal Venues & Events show. This year we welcome JJ Goodman, owner of the London Cocktail Club and winner of TV series The Restaurant, for the brand-new Mixology for Events tasting sessions and Charlotte Lurot, the events guru behind London Fashion Week, for a creative workshop. It’s not too late to sign up, or you can register on the door.

Bar group launches event space - What's New: London Venues Bar group launches event space

City favourite Jamies has just opened an event-only venue next to its Fleet Place property. The space, christened Jamies Too, is available to hire seven days a week.

Venue goes pure - What's New: London Venues Venue goes pure

Church House Conference Centre has upped its sustainability credentials by installing a water purifier at the venue. All H20 will be bottled on site.

10 reasons why you can't miss Venues & Events 2011 - What's New: London Venues 10 reasons why you can't miss Venues & Events 2011

This year's Venues & Events exhibition is now less than three weeks away &, just in case you haven't already decided to join us at Old Billingsgate on 21 & 22 September, we thought we'd serve up ten good reasons why this really is the event show you can't afford to miss. From news on all the latest venue launches to free food, networking opportunities and hands-on event advice for the year ahead , we'll have it all covered.

Let Venues & Events 2011 be your Christmas muse - What's New: London Venues Let Venues & Events 2011 be your Christmas muse

Still not booked your office Christmas party? Struggling for inspiration? Worried that you’ve missed out on the best dates? Then head to Square Meal’s Venues & Events exhibition on 21 and 22 September for the top Christmas party organisers and venues all under one roof. For a free ticket, register here.

Your menu, your brand - What's New: London Venues Your menu, your brand

YOU MAY be more familiar with St. James’ Inamo restaurant for being the only venue in London where you can have interactive games like Battleships beamed onto your table top while you wait for food. Well now it’s been brought to the next level for events, as the venue has launched the technology that allows interactive company branding to be projected onto the table. It allows guests to use the software to choose bespoke canapés and cocktails.

Wembley opens five-a-side pitches on its doorstep - What's New: London Venues Wembley opens five-a-side pitches on its doorstep

To celebrate the opening of a new Powerleague venue in the shadow of the stadium, Wembley is launching teambuilding packages for corporate five-a-side matches. The Premier Package costs £150 per team of seven players, where each team gets a minimum of three games. Choose from add-ons including stadium tours and lunch in one of Wembley’s pitch-side facilities.

Hot new bedrooms - What's New: London Venues Hot new bedrooms

Surrey’s gorgeous Foxhills resort has just had its bedrooms upgraded. It also has a brand-new driving range for golfers to use before playing one of the top courses on site.

Looking for somewhere to enjoy the sun? - What's New: London Venues Looking for somewhere to enjoy the sun?

The good weather is no doubt sending event planners into a frenzy as they look to source the hottest rooftop spaces for summer events over the coming weeks. One of our favourites at the moment is Vista at The Trafalgar (tel: 020 7870 2900), which opened last month with a lavish party. As the name suggests, the view is pretty stunning, looking out over Trafalgar Square and beyond. Book the space in its entirety for 200 stand-up guests, or take smaller tables and sip Pommery Champagne cocktails as the sun goes down.

Barbican goes greener still - What's New: London Venues Barbican goes greener still

The multifaceted east London event venue has just announced that it has implemented a food-recycling scheme that will see 100% of its food waste composted. It already boasts some of the greenest credentials possible, with BS8901 accreditation and a policy that all food served comes from within 250 miles of the venue. The addition of the new pledge makes it one of the eco-friendly venues in town.

Met Bar auctions interiors ahead of refurbishment  - What's New: London Venues Met Bar auctions interiors ahead of refurbishment

London’s Met Bar has put its interiors up for sale in an eBay charity auction, this morning. In preparation for a total refurbishment, the legendary watering hole is selling off furniture including private booths that Kate Moss & Johnny Depp huddled in, DJ decks Kings of Leon mixed on & stools Liam Gallagher perched on. The starting price for the entire collection is £5000, with all the proceeds being donated to Teens Unite Fighting Cancer. The venue will be closed from 31 July until September while the renovations take place.

Imbibe Live is huge success - What's New: London Venues Imbibe Live is huge success

We’re pleased as punch to report that our sister publication, on-trade drinks bible Imbibe, has just posted rip-roaring figures for its second ever exhibition, Imbibe Live. Held at Earl’s Court 2, visitor numbers were up 64% on last year, with buyers and exhibitors alike lavishing praise on the layout and calibre of attendees. Over 1,500 drinks brands were on site, including the biggest names in the business. The show returns next year on 3 and 4 July.

Theatre spends £200k on new Boardroom - What's New: London Venues Theatre spends £200k on new Boardroom

Tottenham Court Road’s Dominion Theatre has just unveiled its new Boardroom space, fresh from a £200k refurbishment. The room hosts 28 delegates with a break-out area and has power points at every seat, with Wi-Fi, projector and Sonos wireless music system. The theatre takes its conferencing credentials seriously, with seven other spaces available for myriad size events. DDRs start from £59.95 in the new Boardroom, which includes lunch, selected from a range of menus.

Smart Glass in The Wharf - What's New: London Venues Smart Glass in The Wharf

Docklands premier event venue East Wintergarden has successfully cut its energy use through the implementation of ‘smart glass’ technology.

Eleven-strong conference chain launches latest venue - What's New: London Venues Eleven-strong conference chain launches latest venue

Fast becoming the largest venue group in town, etc.venues has this week launched its 11th location with a plum location in Victoria. One Drummond Gate comes hot on the heels of its venue in Paddington Basin, which opened back in April. The venue has 11 bright-and-airy meeting spaces, styled in the group’s trademark colour scheme. Conferences are available for up to 250 theatre style, with reception events of up to 350 catered for in the on-site restaurant. A real boon is the property’s outside space – a rarity for this part of town.

New City venue lands - What's New: London Venues New City venue lands

Just launched with an ‘industrial and elegant’ vibe is SOCIeTY Bar and Restaurant, set next to Blackfriars tube. It’s a flexible venue happy to accommodate a range of group options, be it parties and launches for up to 400 across the whole venue, or smaller, yet still sizable, gatherings of up to 150 in its subterranean private room. An outside space is available for all patrons to use, but can’t be hired independently.

Pontoon docks - What's New: London Venues Pontoon docks

Tuesday night saw the launch party for Pontoon, a luxury yacht moored at St Katharine Dock that’s going to double as an exclusive events venue for the summer. Guests sipped on Pommery Champagne & grazed on canapés including grapes in goats’ cheese & pistachio while a jazz quartet provided the tunes. Pontoon can be booked for events till September & can pipe aboard up to 60 guests (10 of whom can sleep on the boat).

Altitude launches Facebook store - What's New: London Venues Altitude launches Facebook store

In an event industry first, Altitude has opened a shop on Facebook to sell packages. Customers can make bookings through the store and take advantage of promotions.

Grand designs - What's New: London Venues Grand designs

The rapidly expanding Grand Union chain have just launched a sprawling bar, just around the corner from Edgware Road station. It can hold up to 400 for receptions, with extra space outside by the canals of Paddington Basin if things get too sweaty. Menus major on towering burgers and well-turned-out pub staples, and there's a late licence where DJs pump out funk, soul and indie hits into the wee small hours. Call 020 7723 5106 to book.

The Capital celebrates 40 years - What's New: London Venues The Capital celebrates 40 years

Jérôme Ponchelle, head chef at The Capital, has just launched a menu to celebrate the hotel’s 40th birthday. It will feature the restaurant’s favourite dishes from the last four decades, with input from The Capital’s previous head chef, Brian Turner. The menu is priced at £70 per person and available in the light-and-airy, 25-seater Cadogan Suite, as well as the two smaller private rooms, hosting 14 and 10 respectively. Check out the menu

New venue opens overlooking the Thames - What's New: London Venues New venue opens overlooking the Thames

Last night saw the Concerto Group add yet another iconic events space to its empire, with the launch of OXO2 on the South Bank. Formed as a joint venture between the industry giants and Coin Street Community Builders, the venue has been transformed to accommodate conferences, dinners of around 100 and receptions for up to 400 guests. More than 300 agents and corporate buyers enjoyed flavoursome spring season-inspired canapés and zesty cocktails, courtesy of preferred caterers Create Food and Party Design. Miniature tartlets of caramelised onion, feta and oven roasted cherry tomato; the verrine of seared trout nicoise and steak tartare with horseradish crème fraiche all proved particularly popular. Subtle column lighting complemented the venue’s pared-back interior and stunning vista across the Thames, while the adjacent balcony provided a haven for guests to soak up some spring evening warmth.

Welcome to the new-look Square Meal website - What's New: London Venues Welcome to the new-look Square Meal website

We’ve just unveiled our glossy new look, with an intuitive search engine and more user-friendly venue pages. As you can see the pictures are bigger, giving you a better idea of the space available, with easy access to a virtual tour of the venue. The new filtering facility allows event organisers to pinpoint suitable venues quickly and easily, just by entering one or two keywords. We’ll keep you updated on new features we add to the site during its development. For now, try entering your favourite location into the search bar and see if we can come up with anything you didn't know about.

New bar Foundation launches - What's New: London Venues New bar Foundation launches

Fun-time bar and nightclubs purveyor Late Night London has just launched a new outpost in the heart of Covent Garden. Called Foundation, the new bar will specialise in quirky cocktails, serving mixes in teapots, smoking beakers, mini barrels and jam jars. Food will be more upmarket than its other venues, with steak, lobster and sea bass well featured. The whole bar can be hired out for 500 guests, with smaller spaces available for around 45. Call 020 7836 5005 to book.

New-look terrace for Belgravia - What's New: London Venues New-look terrace for Belgravia

The 87-bedroom Jumeirah Lowndes Hotel has just revamped its terrace space, bringing with it a Pommery Champagne bar and a summery new look. Hosting a maximum of 48 guests, the area has sprawling views over the surrounding area and with a location a stone’s throw from Harrrods and Harvey Nicks, it’s sure to be popular with thirsty shoppers as the weather hots up. A range of BBQ sharing menus and cocktails work perfectly for groups.

Champagne experiences at The May Fair - What's New: London Venues Champagne experiences at The May Fair

New head chef at The May Fair Hotel, Silvena Rowe, is launching a range of indulgent packages for corporate groups, pairing exclusive drinks with top-end food. Named ‘150’ after the 150cl of fizz in magnum of Champagne, the tasting experiences are designed for groups of 12, including four bottles of vintage bubbles matched with four canapés for each guest. The Dom Pérignon Vintage Rosé 1998 menu follows the canapés with delights like diver-caught scallops and West Mersea native oysters. Sevruga caviar and foie gras are also features. The top package comes in at £4,400 for a group.

Teams that sail together, stay together - What's New: London Venues Teams that sail together, stay together

Arguably the most exhilarating teambuilding experience on the market has just launched its summer sailing series. Clipper Events is inviting companies to take control of one of its 68-foot, round-the-world calibre yachts and race against other firms on the Solent. Packages are priced at £3,500 per 12-man vessel, which includes all food for the day, full training and three races in the afternoon against nine other identical craft.

Wine tasting evenings at Audi quattro rooms - What's New: London Venues Wine tasting evenings at Audi quattro rooms

The Piccadilly venue, just across from The Ritz, is launching a wine tasting package for events. In partnership with Hamish Anderson, head sommelier at Tate Britain’s award-winning restaurant, Audi quattro rooms has developed a list of top-end wines to be tasted in groups of around 125 guests. Prices start from £100 per person for a tasting session and canapé receptions, but extras can be added on. See the wines.

Cookery teambuilding in Marylebone - What's New: London Venues Cookery teambuilding in Marylebone

Cookery teambuilding is all the rage at the moment and no one does it better than Wigmore Street-based L’atelier des Chefs. In a light-and-airy, custom-built learning kitchen which can host up to 50 students at a time, guests can either learn to cook a pre-ordained meal under the tutelage of an experienced chef or take part in a fun menu-planning and design session. Until the end of April, bookers are also being offered a free ‘dinner in an hour’ course for two people.

Chelsea FC Launches Top New Venue - What's New: London Venues Chelsea FC Launches Top New Venue

Fast becoming one of London’s most all-encompassing venues, Chelsea Football Club has just launched the latest in its lineup of stellar spaces. Under the Bridge is a nightclub-style, exclusive-use space, perfect for parties of up to 600 guest, or dinners of 300. It comes with a funky industrial look, seriously top-end AV kit, full-length bar and stage setup. Launching last week with a top set from BRIT Award-winner Ellie Goulding, it's clear the venue’s perfect for concerts, product launches and awards dinners.

Saatchi Gallery: Blank-Canvas Availability  - What's New: London Venues Saatchi Gallery: Blank-Canvas Availability

Being one of the most popular places to see modern art in London, The Saatchi Gallery rarely comes available to the events market to hire as a blank-canvas space. When the opportunity does arise between artwork changes, event planners jump at the chance. The gallery has availability coming up this year, with a few dates in May, October and November. The modern venue can host up to 1,500, but is equally at home with hosting smaller meetings and receptions. Call 020 8968 9331 to enquire.

Sky Lounge Opens a Stone's Throw from Liverpool Street - What's New: London Venues Sky Lounge Opens a Stone's Throw from Liverpool Street

The City’s latest vertigo-inducing event space launched last night with aplomb. Set at the summit of Nido Tower, Sky Lounge can host 150 guests for a reception or dinner for about 50. The white-walled, split-level room has floor-to-ceiling windows, offering up pretty spectacular views of the Gherkin, Tower 42 and the Inside-Out (Lloyds) Building. Break-out space is also available, doubling nicely as meeting or presentation space. Top drawer caterer Nomad provides the food, while Fisher has been installed to do the production. Call Industri on 020 7269 7935 to book.

Private Tasting Room opens at Harrods - What's New: London Venues Private Tasting Room opens at Harrods

Harrods’ new Tasting Room, hidden within The Wine Shop on the Lower Ground Floor, has opened its doors. As you’d expect from the location, it’s an ideal venue for a wine tasting, with over 3,000 different lines available from the famous shop, which can be enjoyed with a corkage fee of £15 across the board (the store’s sommeliers are delighted to help you choose bottles). There’s room for up to 16 guests to enjoy a sit-down lunch or dinner, too, with menus created by Harrods’ own chefs. Full conference facilities are available on request.

Square Mile Salute Auction Raises Nearly a Quarter of a Million - What's New: London Venues Square Mile Salute Auction Raises Nearly a Quarter of a Million

Last Thursday, 423 of the Square Mile’s finest joined together at Guildhall for quite possibly the City culinary extravaganza of the year, with 12 of the world’s top chefs each designing and making a dish for a five-course banquet. Square Mile Salute was designed to raise money for a range of soldiers’ charities, including Help for Heroes and The Royal British Legion. Mayor of London Boris Johnson introduced the night, before Jeremy Clarkson rounded it off by introducing a charity auction. The auction raised a whopping £240,000, with the top-earning lot going for £60,000.

Meet at All Star Lanes - What's New: London Venues Meet at All Star Lanes

All Star Lanes is turning its bowling-gloved hand to meetings, with fantastic rates, starting from £23pp, including lunch. Bowling and/or karaoke is extra. MORE

Matter to Become Proud Offspring - What's New: London Venues Matter to Become Proud Offspring

Square Meal is happy to reveal that Matter in The O2 Arena, London’s largest superclub, is to be redesigned and reopened as Proud2, following in the footsteps of the Camden nightspot. The club will first open to the public with its Bacchus night on Saturday 5 March, showcasing its brand of Ibizan-style ‘experience clubbing’ on a huge scale. Expect fire breathers, trapeze artists and snake charmers throughout – worlds away from the previous incarnation’s raw, stark and industrial style. All levels of the club have been re-worked, with various snugs and VIP lounges dotted around the venue available to private hire.

Dinner by Heston Launches Private Dining Room - What's New: London Venues Dinner by Heston Launches Private Dining Room

Pictures just in of the 10-seater private dining room at Dinner by Heston Blumenthal. The room reflects the restaurant's traditional British style, with leather-padded walls, wooden ceiling beams and an antique oriental rug. The three-course set lunch starts from £28, featuring dishes such as Ragoo of Pigs Ears and Orange Buttered Loaf. To be one of the first to book the space, call 020 7201 3833.

Scotland Takes Over One of London's Most Prestigious Venues - What's New: London Venues Scotland Takes Over One of London's Most Prestigious Venues

Last Thursday saw Banqueting House in Whitehall taken over by the Scottish Exhibition and Conference Centre for its annual Burns Night celebration. Over 150 guests including members of the press and top industry buyers enjoyed a slap-up, four-course Scottish supper underneath the Rubens fresco, in the venue where Charles I ended his days, hung from a second-floor window. Rabbie Burns poetry recitals were regular throughout the night, with the evening finishing on a traditional ceilidh dance.

A New Cantonese for The Chinese New Year  - What's New: London Venues A New Cantonese for The Chinese New Year

Cantonese restaurant the Grand Imperial launched last night as part of the £18m ongoing refurbishment at The Grosvenor Hotel in Victoria. The 143-cover restaurant is available for private hire, with vaulted ceilings, intricately crafted pillars and an elongated marble bar serving a range of Asian-inspired cocktails. The 20-seater private dining room is the stand-out space, put together in tandem by a top Chinese interior designer and Feng-Shui master. We’d recommend the cracking dim sum selection for business lunches and the hand-rolled Peking duck for decadent dinners.

All-in Bowling Parties at Shoreditch House - What's New: London Venues All-in Bowling Parties at Shoreditch House

The classically-styled Biscuit Pin bowling alley at meeja favourite Shoreditch House is offering all-inclusive parties for £2,500 a night. The two-lane alley can host a maximum of 70 people, with the price including a hand-picked selection of party food from the venue’s hearty Bites & Tubs menu and an all-night open bar offering unlimited beer and soft drinks. The offer is open to club members and non-members alike, along with the rest of the exclusive fourth-floor event space.

The Romantic Suite Launches in Ireland - What's New: London Venues The Romantic Suite Launches in Ireland

Voted Ireland's most romantic hotel, The Ritz-Cartlon Powerscourt has just unveiled its new Romantic Suite in time for Valentine's. A trip to the hotel makes the ideal incentive trip or employee reward. MORE

Tom Aikens Launches Event Organising Company at Somerset House - What's New: London Venues Tom Aikens Launches Event Organising Company at Somerset House

Michelin-starred chef Tom Aikens is launching the eponymous Tom’s Events, to be based at Somerset House. Coming off the back of four venue openings at the Grade I-listed, 500-capacity venue, Aikens’ company will team up with experienced event organisers to provide a bespoke event-planning service to make the most of the venue’s myriad rooms. Menus on offer will showcase Aikens’ traditional British style, with ingredients sourced from regional suppliers.

Decadent Detox at Bentley's - What's New: London Venues Decadent Detox at Bentley's

If the annual January detox is starting to grate, head down to Bentley’s on Swallow Street for a bit of virtuous decadence. The Oyster Bar and Grill is offering half-a-dozen oysters (less than 10 calories each) and a glass of Muscadet (100 calories a glass) for just £9.95. Group bookings are available for lunchtime and evening sittings, with the 60-seater Jameson Room ideal for working lunches and early-year morale boosters.

Free Wi-Fi at One Great George Street - What's New: London Venues Free Wi-Fi at One Great George Street

The Westminster venue has just announced that free Wi-Fi is available for all conference clients throughout the 400-capacity venue, as well as Brasserie One. MORE.

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Hot New Hotel Opens Next to Tower of London - What's New: London Venues Hot New Hotel Opens Next to Tower of London

The spanking-new Mint Hotel, Tower of London is now open for business. The hotel boasts iMac computers in each room, fresh, contemporary design and light and airy bedrooms. MORE

The Phene Winter Garden Launches - What's New: London Venues The Phene Winter Garden Launches

With London doing a passable impersonation of Narnia, The Phene in Chelsea’s Winter Garden, which launched in flurry of snowflakes last week, couldn’t have been better timed. Frosty white sofas sit beneath heated canopies, where guests can enjoy hot whisky toddies and mulled wine. If you start to chill out too literally, retreat inside to the stylish bar and lounge – the Phene recently reopened after a tasteful refurb, so think clubby townhouse rather than local boozer.

Winter Offer from Cavendish - What's New: London Venues Winter Offer from Cavendish

Book an event on selected dates at one of the five Cavendish Conference Venues across town and receive a free iPod Nano. Agents are also being offered 20% commission. MORE

Ice Rink at Somerset House - What's New: London Venues Ice Rink at Somerset House

The ice rink, Skate, has just opened for its winter residency at Somerset House, with tickets available from £10.50. For team outings, we’d suggest a couple of winter warmers Tom’s Skate Lounge après skate. MORE

Wahaca Launches Soho Branch with Cool Event Space - What's New: London Venues Wahaca Launches Soho Branch with Cool Event Space

The latest link in Tommi Miers’ Mexican chain is the first to offer event space. Its basement bar can be hired for groups of 60 guests, with room for drinking, dining & table football. The food lends itself perfectly to sharing (ask for large platters of tacos, quesadillas & taquitos) & we loved the new tequila flight, which sees El Tesoro’s blanco, reposado & aňejo varieties served on a wooden presentation board with a shot of sangrita – it will change the way you look at tequila forever. Call 020 7734 0195 for reservations.

The Berkeley Opens Rooftop Winter Cinema - What's New: London Venues The Berkeley Opens Rooftop Winter Cinema

Every winter the five-star Berkeley hotel in Knightsbridge opens a rooftop cinema for guests. This year though, non-residents can come and enjoy the line up of winter classics, like It’s a Wonderful Life and Miracle on 24th Street, while snuggling under Mulberry blankets and sipping on hot chocolate. The cinema package costs £50pp, which includes access to the movie theatre, heated swimming pool and health club for the evening. Call 020 7201 1699 to book. The cinema’s open until 15 February 2011.

Corrigan’s Mayfair Launches New Chef’s Table - What's New: London Venues Corrigan’s Mayfair Launches New Chef’s Table

The Kitchen Library chef’s table launches this week at Corrigan’s Mayfair. Beautifully styled with dark-wood paneling, it can seat eight in the heart of the kitchen. MORE

Manly Afternoon Tea at Hyatt Regency London – The Churchill - What's New: London Venues Manly Afternoon Tea at Hyatt Regency London – The Churchill

Masculine afternoon teas are popping up all over London. Latest to eschew clotted cream and fairy cakes is the Hyatt Regency London – The Churchill, which has just introduced a Churchillian High Tea. Served from 3pm to 7pm, it runs through the full gamut of the great man’s favourites: potted shrimps, cheese on toast, crumpets, smoked salmon, shepherd’s pie, roast beef and Yorkshires, followed up with treacle tart, éclairs, fruit cake and sherry trifle. For the full Churchill, opt for a Martini or glass of Chablis or Pinot Noir at £35, over the standard £29.

Murder on the South Bank - What's New: London Venues Murder on the South Bank

Anyone stuck in the snarled-up traffic in southwest London late last night will have been cursing Agatha Christie. The grand dame of crime fiction would be 120 this year, so to celebrate Orient-Express has transported a 1928 carriage from its British Pullman train to the South Bank for the BFI’s Agatha Christie Weekend. You can step aboard from Thursday through to Sunday, under the watchful eye of a Poirot lookalike. The British Pullman train is, of course, available to book for corporate days, but please don’t base a teambuilding exercise around doing away with an annoying colleague. Call 020 7921 4000 for more info.

New Venue Launch in Covent Garden - What's New: London Venues New Venue Launch in Covent Garden

Just released to the events market, INC Space in Covent Garden is one of the hottest new venues in town at the moment. Originally a members’ club, it has some awesome facilities for brainstorming sessions, creative meetings and receptions. A DDR of £65 is competitive for this part of town, with some exclusive add-ons, like a concierge service and gym facilities that you’d struggle to find outside a members’ club of this quality. Maximum capacity is 200 for a reception.

Soho Members' Club Opens to Events - What's New: London Venues Soho Members' Club Opens to Events

Tucked away in Soho’s Kingly Street, sleek private members’ club Bureau is now available to private hire for the first time ever. Available seven days a week for a maximum of 120 guests, the once-nightclub is perfect for upmarket receptions. Its discreet location – you may’ve walked past many times without realising it was there – makes it ideal for product launches and intimate events. The event space is seriously service driven, with innovative tableside mixology delivered from a roving cocktail trolley for private groups. For more information, call Claire on 020 7494 4386.

All Aboard: HMS President 1918 Relaunches - What's New: London Venues All Aboard: HMS President 1918 Relaunches

It was all hands on deck this week for the relaunch of HMS President 1918, which was celebrating its recent refurbishment and appointment of sole caterer Dish. President has six event spaces, but our tip is to grab the President’s Suite, comprising three areas – The Wrennery, Captain’s Quarters and Foredeck, with dramatic views of the London Eye. President, which is a stone’s throw from Temple Tube, can accommodate groups of eight for meetings, up to 350 for a reception and 240 for sit-down dinners.

Rhubarb Cater at RAH - What's New: London Venues Rhubarb Cater at RAH

One of London's leading caterers, Rhubarb, has just been announced as the official provider at The Royal Albert Hall. Already installed at the London Eye, it's a great coup for the firm.

Etc. Venues Open in Moorgate - What's New: London Venues Etc. Venues Open in Moorgate

Self-styled meeting gurus etc. venues has added a seventh London venue to its London line-up. 120 Moorgate is now open.

Shaker HQ Open to Events - What's New: London Venues Shaker HQ Open to Events

Well established in the on-trade for providing top-end training to some of the best bar tenders in the world, Shaker is offering its hi-tech Hoxton HQ to the events world. With a high-spec meeting and training facility hosting 60 to complement its 10m-long boutique bar, it makes a perfect City retreat for meetings followed by booze-based teambuilding. We recommend the Molecular Mixology classes… become the Blumenthal of the bar world in no time

Venues & Events 2010 - Thanks for Coming! - What's New: London Venues Venues & Events 2010 - Thanks for Coming!

This year’s Venues & Events exhibition couldn’t have been better. An awesome 7,129 of you came out to play and enjoy what’s now described as ‘the Glastonbury of the events industry’. We’re already planning 2011 and have plenty more fun things in store, with the Terrace expanding and even more new restaurant clients on the Gallery level. Thanks to everyone that showed up to take part in the two days – look forward to seeing you next year!

Hotel Verta Opens in Battersea - What's New: London Venues Hotel Verta Opens in Battersea

After a couple of minor delays, the Hotel Verta was opened by Von Essen hotels today next to the Battersea Heliport – London’s vertical getaway. After an exclusive tour last week, we can tell you that it looks absolutely stunning. A stylish black and chrome theme runs throughout the hotel, from the meeting suites to the restaurant, right down to the subterranean spa. The bedrooms are kitted out with the latest AV kit: all rooms have TVs in the bathroom, touch-sensitive heating and lighting with Wi-Fi throughout. Check out our picture tour in the autumn magazine.

Members' Club Extension - What's New: London Venues Members' Club Extension

Quintessentially Soho at The House of St Barnabas has extended its licence until December. Check out the new afternoon tea. MORE

All-in Parties at IoD - What's New: London Venues All-in Parties at IoD

Head to 116 Pall Mall - Home of the IoD for an easy option party. For £65pp, unlimited drinks and nibbles will be provided MORE

Rhubarb Take Over Catering on The Eye - What's New: London Venues Rhubarb Take Over Catering on The Eye

London’s most iconic landmark has called in the big guns to look after its sky-high catering. Renowned for its funky food designs at some of the most high-profile parties in town, rhubarb has put together a canapé list for The London Eye to go with individual capsule hire for private events. On top of the £440 capsule hire cost (which holds 25 guests), a selection of canapés are available for £320. Other popular corporate packages on The Eye are: Campagne Cocktail parties, Green & Black’s Chocolate Tastings, Vinopolis Wine Tasting and Pommery Champange Tasting.

Grosvenor Set to Receive Huge Investment - What's New: London Venues Grosvenor Set to Receive Huge Investment

The Victoria-based Grosvenor Hotel is just about to undergo an £18m investment programme. Taking the same approach to modern design and large-scale entertaining that made it the go-to hotel for big events, the refurbishment will see a restyle of all bedrooms, restaurants and bars. A new Cantonese restaurant, The Grand Imperial, is also set to open in autumn, with a state-of-the-art gym set to follow close behind.

Summer Soirée Reader Event at No.11 Cavendish Square - What's New: London Venues Summer Soirée Reader Event at No.11 Cavendish Square

The party was in full swing last night as 280 Square Meal readers joined the team at No.11 Cavendish Square for a celebration of all things summertime. No.11 opened up its glass-roofed atrium and terrace space to partygoers, as caterer Ampersand served up some seriously innovative canapés and other tasty treats. Lashings of fruit-laden Pimm’s followed fizz on arrival, while a swing band banged out tunes to get everyone in the mood. For anyone looking to book the newly refurbished space for Christmas parties, there a still a few dates left.

New Rooftop Bar Launches in Central London - What's New: London Venues New Rooftop Bar Launches in Central London

Rooftop bars are all the rage at the moment, springing up all over town. The latest one to join the high-rise hierarchy lies on the sixth floor of the Trafalgar Hotel, suitable entitled Vista. Kitted out by the same design agency that did Whisky Mist, the bar has a Mediterranean feel, with stunning viewing points to look out all over town. A partnership with Pommery sees the Champagne well taken care of, while a light-bites menu is available specifically for the bar. Call 020 7870 2900 to book the space.

Tower Spa At Bowood - What's New: London Venues Tower Spa At Bowood

Bowood Hotel & Spa in Whiltshire has added a lofty spa to its facilities. MORE

Sun, Sea and Sand in Heathrow - What's New: London Venues Sun, Sea and Sand in Heathrow

Sandy beaches, azure seas and terracotta sunsets… Not exactly what you’d associate with Hilton Heathrow. But for a limited time, the four-star hotel has imported an artificial beach, specifically for meetings and events. OK, we can’t guarantee the sunsets or seas, but the beach comes equipped for quirky, relaxed meetings, with capacity to host 42 delegates seated, or 200 standing. The hotel has 395 bedrooms and 32 meeting suites.

Natural History Museum Launches Alfresco Space - What's New: London Venues Natural History Museum Launches Alfresco Space

The Natural History Museum couldn’t have asked for a more perfect evening for last night’s launch of the stunning terrace at the £78m Darwin Centre. Some 250 guests sipped pink prosecco & soaked up the views of the sweeping amphitheatre & gleaming façade. A summery line-up of skewers, salads & savoury pastries was served by the-recipe & parkour runners provided suitably contemporary entertainment. The huge terrace adds a reception space to the Darwin Centre’s sleek 400-capacity interior & can also be used before dinner in the iconic Central Hall.

ExCeL Becomes  One of Europe's Largest Venues - What's New: London Venues ExCeL Becomes One of Europe's Largest Venues

London’s largest event space, ExCeL London, has just got bigger, following a two-year, £165m expansion project. Boris Johnson joined a team of prominent Dubai-based politicians and businessmen to open the extension, which will see the east London venue able to host an additional 5,000 delegates in a 32,500sq m facility – equivalent to an extra 14 football pitches. The expansion also sees the ExCeL become London’s largest banqueting hall, able to host 3,000 diners, served from the largest production kitchen in the UK.

Altitude Adopts the iPad - What's New: London Venues Altitude Adopts the iPad

The Altitude 360 team have leapt on the latest Apple toy, the iPad. They will be using the iPad to show prospective clients floor plans, images of previous events, videos and menus instantly. Events at your fingertips… MORE

Ronaldo Joins Tussauds Team - What's New: London Venues Ronaldo Joins Tussauds Team

Portugal's first match, against the Ivory Coast, is today. If you want to party with its star player - and the most expensive signing in the world - Ronaldo, there's no need to trek all the way to South Africa. Baker Street is as far as you need go to rub shoulders with your own personal fantasy football league. Ronaldo is the latest addition to the the Madame Tussauds team, joining Steven Gerrard and David Beckham. Organisers hosting events at Madame Tussauds during the World Cup will also be able to request matches on plasma screens available throughout the venue as part of their package.

Museum of London is Officially Open - What's New: London Venues Museum of London is Officially Open

Square Meal had exclusive access to the biggest launch of 2010 last night as the landmark Museum of London opened its doors for the first time to a star-studded VIP event after a £20.5m refurb. Boris Johnson was joined by Michael Caine and Barbara Windsor for the grand unveiling, taking place in the centrepiece Sackler Hall, complete with it’s visually and architecturally stunning LED Curtain, which, they hope, will soon be granted status as the largest digital clock in the world. High-end caterers Rocket put together the food, with plenty of traditional London dishes (yes, there were jellied eels!), yummy canapés and sushi.

David Cameron Celebrates at The River Room - What's New: London Venues David Cameron Celebrates at The River Room

As election results came in from across the country on 6 May, now prime minister David Cameron was up until dawn celebrating his 20,000-vote Witney constituency win. The main man spent the small hours celebrating in The River Room, part of the Altitude 360 venue collection, where he gave a stirring speech to the Tory party faithful, as our picture shows. Located a few floors below Conservative Party HQ in Millbank Tower, The River Room can host 650 for a reception and was pretty much fit to burst with Tory members celebrating the end of a hard-fought election campaign.

High Rollers at All Star Lanes - What's New: London Venues High Rollers at All Star Lanes

Last night heralded the inauguration of one of the most prestigious trophies in the event industry: the Square Meal All Star Lanes cup. Joined by some of the king pins from the UK’s top venues and suppliers, we took over the private room at the Brick Lane ASL venue. After getting stuck in to the yummy cocktail list and diner-style canapés, competition turned fierce, as nine teams were whittled down to a three for a rousing final end. We’re proud to say our very own Laura ‘Disco Dicko’ Dickinson lead her bowlers to victory. The trophy pin now has pride of place on the V&E sales team pod.

Tories Take Home the Straw Poll at Lord's Reader Event - What's New: London Venues Tories Take Home the Straw Poll at Lord's Reader Event

As election fever swept over London last night, the Home of Cricket opened its doors to the third Square Meal reader event of the year. Taking place exactly five years on from the previous election bash we held at Lord’s, you were out in force, having cast your marks in polling stations all over town. With so much of the stadium to cover, guided tours started in the 800-capacity Nursery Pavilion, swinging by the ultra-modern Media Centre, finishing up in the prestigious and history-packed Long Room, by way of the England players’ dressing room. Delicious bowl food was flowing all night, alongside lashings of Pimm’s and Lord’s-branded Champers.

Inaugural British Inspiration Awards at the Brewery - What's New: London Venues Inaugural British Inspiration Awards at the Brewery

Fast becoming the London venue for ultra-cool awards ceremonies, the Brewery can now add another to its list of regulars. The inaugural British Inspiration Awards took place last Friday at the venue, to join the Kerrang! and MOJO Awards on its line-up of annual celebrations. The awards were designed to honour the top creative, entrepreneurial and inspirational talent we have in Britain today. Winners included: Michael Eavis, James Dyson, Sir Terrance Conran and a posthumous award for Alexander McQueen. Richard Madeley hosted the ceremony, where Ant and Dec and Phillip Schofield also presented awards. Music from Reverend & the Makers – who played an innovative set backed by a gospel choir – brought the event to a close.

Rafayel on the Left Bank Launch Party - What's New: London Venues Rafayel on the Left Bank Launch Party

London’s first ‘green’ hotel launched last night with a lavish Thameside party. Rafayel on the Left Bank, the brainchild of entrepreneur Iqbal Latif, celebrated its official opening on its decked 200-capacity third-floor terrace, while the Nirvana Lounge inside the hotel took on an ‘Oscars Night’ theme. Tasty and trendy pan-Asian nibbles kept guests well fed, provided by the in-house caterers from the on-site restaurant, Banyan on the Thames. Right next to London Heliport, it’s a great spot to host a party and watch the sun go down as the glitterati hover away over the horizon.

Langham's Top for Tea - What's New: London Venues Langham's Top for Tea

Palm Court, the tearoom at the Langham hotel, has been awarded the Tea Guild's Top London Afternoon Tea 2010 Award, the so-called 'oscars of the tea room'. Palm Court is where the traditional of afternoon tea began, 145 years ago, so they should know what they're doing by now. Their award-winning tea menu includes delicate finger sandwiches (cucumber is on the list, naturally), Valrhona chocolate eclairs, scones and clotted cream and and as the afternoon wears on, a glass of Champagne to follow your Earl Grey. The tearoom, which has undergone a £80m refurbishment in recent years, was praised by judges who singled out its 'light and airy' setting, 'beautiful furnishings', as well as its 'exceptional service'. The Tea Guild's Top London Afternoon Tea Award, which is now in its 25th year, is decided by undercover inspectors, who award points for the variety and quality of the teas offered, together with the quality of food, service, décor, ambience, and presentation.

Redesigned Terrace Space at RIBA - What's New: London Venues Redesigned Terrace Space at RIBA

It would be fair to expect that the Royal Institute of British Architects knows its stuff when it comes to good venues. Our high hopes were rewarded last Wednesday with the launch of the impressive new 120 capacity terrace at RIBA HQ designed by Dan Pearson Studios. Complete with its own 'living garden' and funky outside sofas, it’s perfect for summer parties. It can be hired alongside the art deco Florence Hall, or used for wind-down drinks after a meeting in one the 23 newly refurbished meeting rooms.

Alternative Teambuilding at Chinese Cricket Club - What's New: London Venues Alternative Teambuilding at Chinese Cricket Club

Since opening last November, Chinese Cricket Club has been making waves with its brand of modern Sichuan cooking. To introduce guests to the region’s food, it has just launched an innovative teambuilding package. Seated round a table in front of executive chef de cuisine, Brendan Speed (formerly of Zuma Istanbul), guests will be taken through how to make the restaurant’s signature dishes & the ingredients that go into their construction. At £57 for a six-course banquet per person, it makes a great alternative to the traditional wine tasting or cookery masterclasses. The restaurant's based in the flagship branch of Crowne Plaza, in Blackfriars.

Frieze Art Fair at Hyatt Regency - What's New: London Venues Frieze Art Fair at Hyatt Regency

To add a bit of culture to your drinks reception, head to the Hyatt Regency London – The Churchill for the Frieze Art Fair. As part of the hotel’s ongoing association with modern art, the exhibition showcases a series of abstract pieces and work by the acclaimed Patrick Hughes. The exhibition is best viewed in conjunction with a reception in the adjacent library lobby, holding a maximum of 120, stand up.

Breakfast at Whitechapel Gallery - What's New: London Venues Breakfast at Whitechapel Gallery

Entertain guests alongside an international programme of modern and contemporary art by hosting a Business Breakfast at Whitechapel Gallery. Early morning private views include exclusive access to the ‘Where Three Dreams Cross’, exhibition featuring modern photographs of life in India, Pakistan and Bangladesh. Choose between a breakfast or canapé reception served by well-established caterer, Vacherin. Prices start from £20pp based on a minimum of 100 guests.

Summer Parties at London Zoo - What's New: London Venues Summer Parties at London Zoo

Why not take staff to party with the monkeys, or lounge around with the lizards this summer? London Zoo is making an animal-themed event all the more appealing this year, offering a free cocktail party worth £1,000 for all parties booked for over 40 people.

Trashed: the Brewery Launches its Hot Summer Menu - What's New: London Venues Trashed: the Brewery Launches its Hot Summer Menu

Ever the early bird, the Brewery burst into summer last night with the launch of its spectacular new menu. One of the most innovative and off-the-wall launches we’ve had the pleasure to attend, its ‘Trashed’ theme showed incredibly detailed theming and seriously sophisticated cooking. From the personalised wheelie bin that held the cutlery, to the deconstructed neon signs that lit the rooms, it will make a perfect summer party space.

New Champagne Bar Launches at Vinopolis - What's New: London Venues New Champagne Bar Launches at Vinopolis

Wednesday saw the launch of a new Nicolas Feuillatte Champagne Bar at Vinopolis. During the day, the space, conceived by hot French designer Christian Ghion, forms part of the venue’s Wine Tour. By night, it makes a great entertainment area for up to 70 guests. We’d use it to stage a tasting of some of the diverse Champagnes in the Nicolas Feuillatte range, most definitely including the excellent Rosé Vintage – a brightly coloured but very delicate wine, perfect for a summer party.

No.11 Cavendish Square Chooses St Patrick’s Day to Open its Doors - What's New: London Venues No.11 Cavendish Square Chooses St Patrick’s Day to Open its Doors

Fresh off the back of a £3m facelift, No.11 Cavendish Square launched with a lavish party last night. Square Meal joined over 300 guests to sample what the venue had to offer, from its all-new summer menu featuring a truly superb Eton Mess, to Black Velvet cocktails in honour of St Patrick himself. Previously known only as The King’s Fund, the No.11 branding brings the venue into the event world with some stellar spaces: the Georgian-styled Treasurer’s Room, seating 16, and the light-and-airy Conservatory, holding 200.

Reader Event at The Northumberland - What's New: London Venues Reader Event at The Northumberland

Our second reader event of the year last night went with a swing. Celebrating the refurbishment of London’s most central venue, The Northumberland, we invited 500 of you to come and check out the space over Champagne, cocktails and bowl food aplenty. ‘Chips and Champagne,’ one reader remarked. ‘I couldn’t be happier!’ We’d have to agree – the trademark Boyd’s chip cones and lobster bisque were delicious. Service from Off to Work made the event run smoothly. Check out the pics.

New look for Stoke Newington Town Hall - What's New: London Venues New look for Stoke Newington Town Hall

THE GRADE II-listed Stoke Newington Town Hall has been restored to its original art deco glory. After a two-year, multimillion-pound refit courtesy of Hackney Council, the much-loved 1930s civic building has a stunning new interior, complemented by what the venue claims to be the largest mirror ball in Europe (1.5m in diameter, for all you disco fiends). Two new spaces are now available to hire: the 70-capacity Council Chamber and the Assembly Hall, both with vaulted ceilings and state-of-the-art AV facilities.

Devastating Fire at The East Room

If you noticed the plumes of smoke rising over east London this morning, we are sorry to inform you that The East Room, one of the city’s premier members’ clubs, caught fire around 4am. The club and bar Sosho beneath have been completely gutted and subsequently have had to cancel all events. The venue will be in touch to inform those who previously held bookings.

The Boiler House at Battersea Power Station Launch Party - What's New: London Venues The Boiler House at Battersea Power Station Launch Party

Londoners have long wondered what was to come of Battersea Power Station; last night they found out. In a party to celebrate the launch of The Boiler House – an Arena marquee dropped into the shell of the building – the 15 caterers from the venue’s preferred list went head to head showing off their wares to a willing audience of over 1,000. Production gurus Fisher, who have the sole contract at the venue, put on a truly fabulous show, with the walls of the building illuminated with the logos of the venue’s various providers.

Happy 10th Birthday London Eye! - What's New: London Venues Happy 10th Birthday London Eye!

Congratulations to the London Eye, which hits double digits this year. Since opening ten years ago, the Eye has welcomed a staggering 36 million visitors, rotated 45,000 times, hosted 433 weddings, and has established itself as an iconic part of the London skyline. In celebration, from 7pm today, all visitors to the London Eye will enjoy an impressive light show as they rotate, plus a free glass of Pommery Champagne. If you can’t make it tonight, there will also be a special limited allocation of 10am celebratory birthday flights each morning through March, available at a reduced price of £10.

Piper Exhibition at Grocers' Hall - What's New: London Venues Piper Exhibition at Grocers' Hall

City livery company Grocers’ Hall is hosting an exhibition of the works of celebrated 1950s stained-glass-window maker and painter, John Piper. Various tenants of his work from across the country have loaned their pieces to produce the exhibition, which showcases never-before-seen artefacts, including his oil-on-canvas of the Piazza Navona in Rome and his iconic Brighton Pavilion, from 1938. The exhibition won’t be open to the public, but is free to view for those hosting functions at the hall.

Get Your Wings at Westfield - What's New: London Venues Get Your Wings at Westfield

Ever fancied treating your team with a trip to New York for the morning? Or maybe Prague or Hong Kong? Flight simulator iPilot has just launched at Westfield and makes an innovative teambuilding experience. Take it in turns to fly and land a plane into the world’s most famous airports. A Champagne and canapé reception can be easily built in, as can dinner packages at the centre’s restaurants.

Rotunda Launches Cocktail Masterclasses  - What's New: London Venues Rotunda Launches Cocktail Masterclasses

A stylish new bar in the sleek and curvy Kings Place complex, Rotunda has launched cocktail making masterclasses for corporate groups. One of the most reasonably-priced cocktail classes on the market, for £30 per head, guests are greeted with a glass of fizz, before learning to shake and make four of the most popular cocktails on the market. Led by one of the best bartenders in town, imbibe favourite Scott Wallace, learn the tricks of the trade before slurping away the results over a hearty range of bar snacks.

Home House Brings in (Another) New Look - What's New: London Venues Home House Brings in (Another) New Look

<<p> One of the most fashionable members’ clubs around with certainly the most heritage, Portman Square’s Home House has just been made even slicker by luxury interior designers, Candy & Candy. Already replete with futuristic designs from the award-winning Zaha Hadid, the new look maintains the 18th-century glamour that the club built its reputation on, bringing in elegant linear patterns and a dark colour palette. Check out the new '21' spaces for private hire.

art'hotel to Open in Shoreditch - What's New: London Venues art'hotel to Open in Shoreditch

A Park Plaza ‘art’otel’ – as the name suggests – is a cross between a gallery and a hotel, styled entirely by a well-known contemporary artist. Seven examples already exist in Germany and have received widespread critical acclaim.

The new hotel will be built on the site of The Foundry, a gallery-cum-pub close to the hearts of many in the Hoxton/Shoreditch arts community. Featuring an original work by Banksy on the walls, its demolition has caused controversy among locals, with Pete Doherty coming out in support of the venue.

Park Plaza is trying to find a new home for The Foundry and incorporate Banksy's existing art into the design.

Guoman Shanghai Opens - What's New: International Venues Guoman Shanghai Opens

Shanghai Surprise Guoman Hotels is expanding east: the 442-bedroom Guoman Shanghai which opened on 1 June, joins the four London outposts, The Royal Horseguards, The Cumberland, The Tower and Charing Cross. The five-star hotel is arranged over 26 floors, two of them dedicated to Eastern-inspired restaurants and bars. There’s a touch of British indulgence in the fleet of Guoman-operated black cabs, which are on hand to transport guests round the city. The property is geared up for large-scale events, too – the Ballroom seats up to 750 theatre-style and there are 11 state-of-art conference rooms.

Hotel at The O2 Arena - What's New: London Venues Hotel at The O2 Arena

Big news for Greenwich as AEG Europe has applied for detailed planning consent to build a four-star hotel right next to The O2 Arena. If granted, the world’s most popular music venue will have a 3,000-capacity dedicated event space on its doorstep, as well as serviced apartments and 450 bedrooms. The site has outline consent and will expect an answer soon.

Reader Event – Thanks for Coming - What's New: London Venues Reader Event – Thanks for Coming

Hundreds of you turned out last night for our first reader event of the decade, this time held at the City’s One Moorgate Place. The recently rebranded venue – previously known as Chartered Accountants Hall – took on a Janurary ‘Detox/Retox’ theme. Guests began by sampling virtuous canapés and sushi, before heading down to the all-new One Moorgate Place Restaurant for devilish desserts, cheese and cocktails.

Dexter House Opens Brand New Conference & Exhibition Floor - What's New: London Venues Dexter House Opens Brand New Conference & Exhibition Floor

Fans of etc.venues’ London events’ space, Dexter House will be excited to learn that the company has added a specialist conference and exhibition floor to the venue which now encompasses three floors. The new space offers complete exclusivity for conferences for up-to 300 delegates plus an integrated exhibition area for up to 25 stands featuring the abundant daylight, stunning views and high quality catering that organisers have come to appreciate from this versatile space.

Subway Goes Online - What's New: London Venues Subway Goes Online

For a delicious working lunch that won’t break the budget, the crowd-pleasing sandwich chain Subway has just launched an online delivery service. Each platter of its trademark subs costs £18 and feeds between six and eight people. Four mixed options include a Meat Feast, Vegetarian and low-cal Lite variety and extras such as cookies, muffins, crisps and drinks are also available with free delivery for orders over £25.

HMS Belfast is Shipshape Again - What's New: London Venues HMS Belfast is Shipshape Again

Following a £250,000 investment by Sodexo Prestige, the event space on HMS Belfast – one of the most powerful light cruisers ever built – is now looking shipshape. The splendid Admiral’s Quarters and the 100-capacity Ante Rooms have been refurbished, restoring a sense of history to the rooms and installing the latest technology. Book a party and you’ll be piped onboard in traditional naval style and be given a guided tour by an HMS Belfast veteran, who will regale you with seafaring tales and (suitably salty) anecdotes.

The King’s Fund Unveils Nine New Event Spaces - What's New: London Venues The King’s Fund Unveils Nine New Event Spaces

After a million-pound refurbishment, the historic King’s Fund in the heart of the West End has emerged with nine gleaming new rooms. Kitted out with all the latest AV technology, the spaces have been lovingly restored to the Grade-II listed building’s trademark Georgian grandeur. With high ceilings and unimpaired sight lines, they work perfectly for large theatre-style conferences and presentations.

One of the First 'Green' Hotels Opens in Battersea - What's New: London Venues One of the First 'Green' Hotels Opens in Battersea

January sees the launch of one of the world’s first ‘green’ hotels, Rafayel on the Left Bank in Battersea. Ultra-modern, fitted with LED lights throughout and energy saving features in each room, it aims to reduce electrical costs by 80% and cut 17kg of carbon emissions per bedroom. Four modern meeting suites featuring dark-wood panelling and state-of-the-art AV can host conferences of up to 250, while the 65 bedrooms are all kitted out with MediaHub panels, floor-to-ceiling windows & Murano glass in the bathrooms.

Congress Centre Launches New Reception - What's New: London Venues Congress Centre Launches New Reception

A stunning new reception and foyer has just launched at the Congress Centre, designed by Hugh Broughton Architects. Already chosen as a location for BBC2's new drama Money, the new design introduces more space, colour and light to the venue's entrance and welcome area. An array of colour-changing LEDs, as well as innovative down and up-lights, is complemented by HD plasma screens, with plenty of opportunities for branding.

Launch of The Arch London - What's New: London Venues Launch of The Arch London

With a soft opening this month and official launch in January 2010, The Arch London is an elegant 82-bedroom hotel built inside seven Grade II-listed Georgian townhouses on Great Cumberland Place. Event spaces include the WHItehall 944, seating 20 for a private dinner or 40 for a meeting, and a library and small study which are also available for hire on an ad-hoc basis.

Private Dining at The Fellow - What's New: London Venues Private Dining at The Fellow

With our sister title Imbibe regularly holding daytime tastings in its private 80-capacity cocktail bar, we thought it high time to tell you about one of King's Cross' latest openings The Fellow (tel: 020 7833 4395). The slick gastro-pub has a warren of great spaces for private events: the cocktail bar has a decked open air terrace and there's also a 12-seat PDR that specialises in feasts such as whole roast duck or sirloin of beef carved at the huge oak table. Optional extras include cocktail masterclasses, poker tables and screening facilities.

Boiler House Opens at Battersea Power Station - What's New: London Venues Boiler House Opens at Battersea Power Station

The Boiler House inside Battersea Power Station is open for business, finishing its build just in time for the festive season (there are still a few dates left for Christmas parties too). With a capacity of 1,000, the striking temporary structure sits within the walls of the iconic power station, with a clear PVC roof so guests can gaze up to the famous chimneys. Ample parking is on site and the venue is taking bookings for the next two years.

Proud Cabaret Opens in the City - What's New: London Venues Proud Cabaret Opens in the City

The trendy Proud stable is branching out from its Camden base into Chelsea (tel: 020 7349 0822), where a new gallery has just opened and is available for private hire for up to 140, and into the City, with the launch of Proud Cabaret (tel: 020 7283 1940). Modelled on a 1920s speakeasy, it offers fine dining and entertainment in glamorous surrounds, with a VIP area holding 50 and available for private hire.

Odeon Goes Digital - What's New: London Venues Odeon Goes Digital

Following a distrubution deal with three major Hollywood film studios, the Odeon & UCI Cinemas Group (OUCG) is to install digital projectors in all its UK cinemas. With 187 digital screens already within its portfolio, the remainder will cost more than £70m to complete. Venue hire facilities and private screenings are available for groups of up to 1,600 at any of chain's nationwide cinemas.

The East Room Opens Pop-Up Alpine Lodge - What's New: London Venues The East Room Opens Pop-Up Alpine Lodge

Shoreditch members' club hangout The East Room is opening up a rooftop pop-up Alpine Lodge designed with parties and group bookings in mind. Called 'The Clubhouse', it holds 60-70 people, who can cosy down in squishy sofas and enjoy a roaring open fire, with 'views' of Mont Blanc. Foodwise, classic sharing menus include a bubbling three-cheese fondue, tartiflette or Pot au Feu. Groups can also buy the Grey Goose Glacier, a giant rehoboam of frozen vodka, or organise a ‘Keg Party’ with an 88 pint barrel of beer. The Lodge is open until February.

Dean Street Townhouse Launches in Soho - What's New: London Venues Dean Street Townhouse Launches in Soho

The Soho House group has been busy busy, what with the launch of Pizza East earlier this month and now the Dean Street Townhouse which opens this week. Events facilities are minimal but a sexy 10-seater private dining room (12 at a push) and adjoining lounge area complete with open (real) fire are great for small parties. Bedroom prices start at an incredibly reasonable £95 (there are 39 bedrooms in total) and a buzzing restaurant with a tasty British menu is sure to be a big hit with Soho media types.

Ramsay's Right-Hand Chef Moves to Swan at the Globe - What's New: London Venues Ramsay's Right-Hand Chef Moves to Swan at the Globe

Mark Sargeant, who has worked for Gordon Ramsay Holdings for the past 13 years and is a close friend of the chef, has just announced his new position as creative director of the Swan Collection (encompassing Swan at the Globe and The Swan in West Malling, Sargeant’s home town in Kent). The already sterling reputation of catering and events in the UnderGlobe and the Balcony Room at the Bankside venue are sure to benefit still further from Sargeant's expertise (one of his most recent roles was running Gordon Ramsay at Claridges).

Rouge Events Launches 33 Fitzroy Square - What's New: London Venues Rouge Events Launches 33 Fitzroy Square

Hang out in the former workshop of the Bloomsbury Set at 33 Fitzroy Square, newly available for private hire through Rouge Events in Fitzrovia. A beautifully understated five-story Grade I-listed Georgian townhouse, there's a wide choice of rooms, including a basement private screening room for 20, a roomy kitchen with space for dining and a light-filled gallery for drinks receptions, not to mention a private garden

HMS Belfast Set for Refurbishment - What's New: London Venues HMS Belfast Set for Refurbishment

Following a £250,000 investment by Sodexo Prestige, who manage events and catering aboard HMS Belfast, the historic vessel is undergoing an intensive restoration and modernisation programme, ready to relaunch to guests in time for Christmas. The Admiral’s Quarters, once his private dining room and sitting room, are being restored to their former glory, as are The Ward and Ante Room. The Gun Room and The Ship’s Company Dining Room are also being updated and modernised with new carpets, AV equipment and broadband.

More New Space at Altitude 360 - What's New: London Venues More New Space at Altitude 360

As if Altitude 360 hasn't been busy enough with the launch of the River Room over the summer, the 29th floor venue is now opening a third space, at the foot of the Millbank Tower. The Millbank Cinema and Media Centre is set to become one of London's top screening and dedicated presentation venues, with a capacity of 350. Adjoining the room is a stylish lounge bar which is already available for Christmas bookings, for 10 to 200 people. The collective capacity of the Altitude 360 venues now exceeds 1,600, with 22,000sq ft of space.

Refurbished Conference Space at the Lensbury - What's New: London Venues Refurbished Conference Space at the Lensbury

24 conference rooms in the Twickenham Building have been refurbished at the Teddington-based Lensbury Hotel & Club. All rooms now feature enhanced AV, video conferencing and new soft furnishings, alongside increased capacities to 225 theatre style. Enjoy the new rooms by taking advantage of the venue's 2010 early-bird offer of reduced DDRs in January and February. The venue has also just been chosen as the training camp for the South African 2012 Olympic team.

Platinum Private Dining at The Met - What's New: London Venues Platinum Private Dining at The Met

Launched in time for Christmas but available from now and throughout 2010, Metropolitan London has introduced dazzling new 'Platinum' private dining packages. To be enjoyed in any of the hotel's five event spaces, you can also hire the COMO suite, holding up to 50, and get an overnight stay in the swanky suite included. Expect sleek black linen, glass charger plates, candlelit platinum and silver sand-storm lanterns plus contemporary floral displays and Swarovski crystals scattered over the tables.

Hilton Park Lane Opens Refurbished Meeting Space - What's New: London Venues Hilton Park Lane Opens Refurbished Meeting Space

The fourth floor meeting rooms at the London Hilton on Park Lane have reopened following a half-a-million-pound refurbishment. The eight rooms, business centre, breakout reception area and large lobby have been transformed from traditional English boardroom to sleek modern lines with a quirky 60s twist. Holding up to 50, adjustable mood lighting and funky ergonomic chairs add to the effect.

Wedding Licence for RIBA - What's New: London Venues Wedding Licence for RIBA

RIBA has recently been granted a wedding licence. Couples looking to tie the knot will be able to choose from seven spaces accommodating up to 100. The Art Deco wedding package starts from just £115 per person and includes room hire of the art deco Florence Hall, as well as a vintage car, a Silver Wedding catering package, half a bottle of house wine per guest, a wedding cake and live jazz.

Chop'd Launch Deliveries - What's New: London Venues Chop'd Launch Deliveries

Chop'd (tel: 020 7626 3706), the UK's leading gourmet salad bar chain, is bringing its delicious lunchtime treats to your door with its new office delivery service. Six postcodes are covered - W1, NW1, E1, EC3, WC1 and E14 - and prices are very reasonable, starting at £4 for a Tuna Nicoise. Those near Selfridges are in luck too, as Chop'd now has a concession in the store's Food Hall.

Grand Connaught Rooms Open for Business - What's New: London Venues Grand Connaught Rooms Open for Business

We were seriously impressed by the £7m revamp of the Grand Connaught Rooms (tel: 020 7405 7811), viewed at the Principal Hayley-owned venue last Thursday. Formerly the New Connaught Rooms, the stand-out space is the Grand Hall, spectacularly restored to its former glory and holding 700 people for a dinner. A new restaurant, Tempus, features a private dining room while the Covent Garden Suite and 11 meeting rooms have all enjoyed a contemporary facelift.

Sea Change at Absolute Icebar - What's New: London Venues Sea Change at Absolute Icebar

The new-look Absolute Icebar launched this week, adopting a frosty nautical theme. Redesigned every six months to keep both ice and design fresh, the whole venue, including downstairs bar and restaurant Below Zero and the minus five degrees ice chamber itself, has taken on a marine slant, with underwater effects and visuals throughout. The venue is available for exclusive hire for 270.

Singing the Blues (Kitchen) in Camden - What's New: London Venues Singing the Blues (Kitchen) in Camden

With a 3am licence, central Camden location and live blues seven nights a week, The Blues Kitchen (tel: 020 7387 5277) has definitely cooked up a recipe for success. Clever interior design gives the venue a laid-back 'lived-in' feel, while soul food and one of London's most extensive Bourbon lists are sure to please guests when you hire the venue exclusively for 300 people. Alternatively, hire an area for a minimum of 15 if you want to join the trendy Camden regulars.

New Look at The Groucho Club - What's New: London Venues New Look at The Groucho Club

We are loving The Groucho Club's new look, unveiled after a busy refurbishment programme over the summer months. All areas have had a fresh lick of paint and new carpets but of most interest to event bookers is the transformation of the beautiful 80-seater Dining Room (pictured) into a more contemporary and elegant event space, and the 18-seater Mackintosh Room, which now looks far more warm and welcoming for boardroom meetings and private dining.

Soho House Group Launches Pizza East - What's New: London Venues Soho House Group Launches Pizza East

The Soho House Group bravely launched its latest venture, Pizza East (tel: 020 7729 1888), to an audience of critics and chefs in conjunction with the London Restaurant Festival Awards last night. And guess what? It paid off. An army of well-drilled staff served up delicious samplers from the well-priced menu and it’s clear to see the new site can cope with a crowd. There are plenty of long tables for groups and the moodily lit space with its open kitchen and centrepiece bar works a treat for large, exclusive-use events. Well worth checking out.

New Caterers at Natural History Museum - What's New: London Venues New Caterers at Natural History Museum

Following the high-profile launch of the Darwin Centre, the Natural History Museum has announced the names of three new caterers who will be joining its preferred supplier list in January 2010. With over 50 applications submitted for tender, The Recipe, Payne & Gunter and Table Talk are the lucky three who join the list of the Museum’s existing caterers, all of whom have also secured a contract for a further three years.

Afternoon Tea at Swissotel The Howard - What's New: London Venues Afternoon Tea at Swissotel The Howard

We love the new afternoon tea package, TLSee, at Swissotel The Howard (tel: 020 7584 6601). London's iconic landmarks, such as Big Ben and the London Eye, as well as black cabs and old Routemaster buses, have been fashioned into delicious shortbread biscuits and 3D chocolates. Served up from 1pm to 5.30pm, they make the perfect pit-stop for meetings at the Temple-based hotel.

Sunbeam Studios Set for Events - What's New: London Venues Sunbeam Studios Set for Events

Photographic studios often make for fantastic event spaces but few are as handsome as Sunbeam Studios in Ladbroke Grove. A Grade II-listed former Edwardian showroom, it’s teeming with period features, including a curved vaulted ceiling, huge arched window and feature staircase leading to a mezzanine to break up the space. We particularly like the fact you can drive right up to the entrance and step out of a car straight onto the grand entrance steps.

New Exhibition at Cabinet War Rooms - What's New: London Venues New Exhibition at Cabinet War Rooms

A new year-long exhibition has opened at the Churchill Museum & Cabinet War Rooms. Commemorating 70 years since the War Rooms became operational, ‘Undercover: Life in Churchill’s Bunker’ lifts the lid on what life was like for government and military strategists working in the shelter during World War II. Previously unseen documents, letters, personal stories and artefacts have been unveiled and make a fascinating distraction as part of a day delegate package or boardroom meeting.

Battersea Power Station Ready to Launch - What's New: London Venues Battersea Power Station Ready to Launch

Event organisers have been salivating over the potential of Battersea Power Station for years. Acres of space around an iconic landmark in central London: what’s not to love? The long-awaited opening of the gates in autumn 2009 saw the launch of a handful of superlative spaces in and around the famous building. We particularly like the Boiler House, a striking temporary structure that sits inside the Power Station walls, with a clear gable end and roof section giving up to 1,000 guests dramatic views of the towering chimneys above. There’s ample parking as well as AV kit and furniture hire on site and plenty of outdoor space to play with for larger events.

Venues & Events Sees Numbers Up on Last Year - What's New: London Venues Venues & Events Sees Numbers Up on Last Year

It was great to see you at our Venues & Events Exhibition last week. Despite the recession, many of you are clearly still booking events, as our visitor numbers were up on last year. Office Diner fed more than 5,000 people in our ever-popular café, while also managing to come second in the Canapé Cup challenge (Cinnamon Kitchen was voted overall winner). The new Fizz For Events sessions were also a great success, as were our new pink bags, which have been spotted since all around town. See you next year!

Cinnamon Club Launches Afternoon Tea for Groups - What's New: London Venues Cinnamon Club Launches Afternoon Tea for Groups

Groups of 24 or more can now enjoy a new afternoon tea menu in the cosy Library Bar at The Cinnamon Club. Showcasing a selection of modern Indian delicacies, the delicious menu features dishes such as Bengali spiced crab, spiced cottage cheese and pickled cucumber, and kathi kebab rolls, as well as the obligatory scones and pastries.

Jason Atherton Launches Banqueting Menu - What's New: London Venues Jason Atherton Launches Banqueting Menu

The first ballroom in London to have Michelin starred cuisine on its menu, the London Marriott Hotel, Grosvenor Square is making the most of its maze connections by launching a new banqueting menu created by the restaurant’s executive chef, Jason Atherton.

London's Largest Barge Available for Events - What's New: London Venues London's Largest Barge Available for Events

Think Silver Fleet on the canal and you get the idea of new waterway venue on the water (tel: 020 7586 6666). The bespoke barge (the largest on London’s canals) is currently moored in Primrose Hill but come October it will moving up to Paddington Basin for drinks receptions and private dinners of up to 20. The white-walled vessel, with its own kitchen and luxurious bathroom, is flexible enough to cater for all requests.

October Launch for Palace Suite at the Royal Garden Hotel - What's New: London Venues October Launch for Palace Suite at the Royal Garden Hotel

Kensington’s Royal Garden Hotel has completed another rung of its refurbishment ladder with the October launch of The Palace Suite, boosting conference capacity to 550. The 4,935sq ft room will be subdividable and will have its own pre-function area and breakout rooms close by. 10 additional function rooms have also been refurbished.

Change of Name for Royal Lancaster - What's New: London Venues Change of Name for Royal Lancaster

Conference organiser's favourite the Royal Lancaster Hotel has changed its name to the more punchy Lancaster London. Everything else stays the same at the popular Hyde Park hotel, which features one of the largest conference suites in London, catering for up to 3,000.

Gaucho Charlotte Street Opens This Week - What's New: London Venues Gaucho Charlotte Street Opens This Week

This week sees the launch of Gaucho Charlotte Street (tel: 020 7580 6252) at the quieter top end of Fitzrovia's buzzing Charlotte Street. A modern tasting room, along similar lines to that at the Gaucho O2, makes a great private hire space alongside a contemporary bar and 150-cover restaurant, all of which are available for private hire. Gaucho’s signature cowhide decor and crystal chandeliers feature throughout, while the menu is a mix of the famed Argentinian beef and freshly prepared fish and shellfish.

New Look for  Waterloo Brasserie - What's New: London Venues New Look for Waterloo Brasserie

We're liking the makeover which has just been unveiled at Waterloo Brasserie. The venue says it's going for a 'more arty look and feel' and they've definitely achieved it in the 80-capacity bar and lounge area, where cool black-and-white photographs line the walls (rotating art exhibitions will be on display throughout the year). There's a new menu too, for sit-down dinners of up to 130.

The London Eye 4D Experience - What's New: London Venues The London Eye 4D Experience

Visitors to the Merlin Entertainments London Eye can now experience what it’s like to soar high as a bird over London’s dramatic skyline, as the iconic landmark unveils its pioneering 4D Film Experience. Already offering unrivalled views of London, the £5m bespoke cinematic addition to the attraction will now provide another way to experience the city. Pre-flight, visitors will watch the first ever 3D aerial footage of London as well as witness London's New Year’s Eve fireworks. Boasting more 4D sensory effects than any other attraction in the UK, visitors will feel as if they are really there, with wind in their hair, snow falling at their feet, the floor shaking & even a sense of smell.

Backstage Tours at the Royal Opera House - What's New: London Venues Backstage Tours at the Royal Opera House

Now summer is nearly over, we're looking indoors for event entertainment and love the idea of combining a private lunch for 200 or drinks reception in the Amphitheatre Restaurant at the Royal Opera House with an exclusive backstage tour (for a maximum of 20 guests per tour). The tour includes a history of the theatre, current productions (you may even get to see the Royal Ballet in class) and the amazing backstage technology at work.

New Lion Cubs at London Zoo - What's New: London Venues New Lion Cubs at London Zoo

Even more of an incentive to book an event at ZSL London Zoo: two gorgeous 10-week old Asian lion cubs have just been introduced into the Animal House enclosure. It's the first time in 10 years that lions have been born at the zoo. Watch them play at close hand when you book the Animal Houses for an event for up to 250 guests but hurry, they won't be babies for long!

Thanks for Coming to our Reader Event at Altitude 360! - What's New: London Venues Thanks for Coming to our Reader Event at Altitude 360!

We couldn't have asked for better weather at last night's reader event: the hottest day of the year so far and what better place to watch the sun go down than Altitude 360? Over 600 of you arrived to a Champagne reception with delicious canapés, while the sushi bar and fresh pasta station proved almost as popular as the breathtaking views over miles of London skyline. Guests were welcomed by Altitude 360's managing director Alex Kersjes, who spoke about the venue's new 15,000sq ft space The River Room, situated on the second floor for those with less of a head for heights!

Beaten by The Brewery! - What's New: London Venues Beaten by The Brewery!

The in-house caterer at The Brewery is among the best in the business so when the City venue ‘Challenged Annica’ to a cook-off, we knew we had a big task on our hands. The V&E team put up a good fight, serving 20 three-course meals with just four hours’ prep, but our haloumi salad, fish & chips and frozen margarita pie didn’t quite score enough points to beat the Brewery’s chicken liver parfait, baked haddock and plum clafoutis. We reckon the real winners were the judges who got to eat it all!

Refurbishments at Kensington Palace - What's New: London Venues Refurbishments at Kensington Palace

Kensington Palace is set for complete refurbishment between 2010 and 2012. As a result, the Victorian Garden Rooms, comprising the Red Saloon (Queen Victoria met her Privy Council for the first time in this room in 1837), the Teck Saloon and the North Drawing Room (where historians believe Victoria was born), will close from March 2010 to make way for a permanent exhibition. Don't miss your last chance to book any of these historic spaces for events.

The Cinnamon Club Launches Afternoon Tea  - What's New: London Venues The Cinnamon Club Launches Afternoon Tea

Heat up debate at your boardroom meeting with afternoon tea at The Cinnamon Club. The restaurant has just launched an enticingly spicy menu for groups of 24 or more (maximum 30) to enjoy afternoon tea between 2.30-5pm in the cosy Library Bar. Enjoy such treats as kathi kebab rolls, chicken tikka sandwiches, Bengali spiced crab and the obligatory scones and pastries. A week's notice is advised for bookings, though 24 hour's notice can be accommodated in exceptional circumstances.

Hoxton Grill Bought by Soho House - What's New: London Venues Hoxton Grill Bought by Soho House

Trendy Shoreditch restaurant Hoxton Grill has joined the Soho House Group. The classic American grill-style venue has five private hire spaces: two elegant private dining rooms seating 30 and 22 respectively; a lobby bar where two areas can be reserved for drinks and canapé receptions for up to 50; and a pretty garden, available for exclusive use Monday-Thursday and Sundays, which accommodates 80 standing.

Bookings Open for NHM's Darwin Centre - What's New: London Venues Bookings Open for NHM's Darwin Centre

The Natural History Museum has opened its event diary for the Darwin Centre, which will be available for corporate and private hire from 1 October. The £78m centre will be able to cater for 150 guests for dinner and up to 350 for receptions, and will boast its own landscaped garden and gated private entrance. Room hire starts at £10,150 and space is bright and modern, with access to the museum's 20-million-strong collection of insects and plants in a 65m-long, eight-storey cocoon.

Hazlitt's Opens New Meeting Space - What's New: London Venues Hazlitt's Opens New Meeting Space

One of London's oldest hotels, Hazlitt's (tel: 020 7434 1771) in Soho has launched a stylish new meeting space. The Wardrobe, which was once used as a place of safety for aristocrats’ valuables, now seats up to 12 guests. The wood-panelled and air-conditioned meeting room has been designed to capitalise on natural daylight and brought up to 21st century standards with hi-tech presentation equipment, alongside antiques and curios. Day delegate rates start at £75.

Host Your Own Roast at Paradise - What's New: London Venues Host Your Own Roast at Paradise

Popular west London gastropub Paradise by way of Kensal Green (tel: 020 8969 0098) has introduced a 'Host Your Own Roast' concept, catering for up to 18 people. Guests can choose from six different roasts accompanied by roast potatoes in duck fat, Yorkshire puddings and all the trimmings. The three-course private roast is hosted (and carved!) by head chef Tim Payne (star of Hell's Kitchen) and held either in the venue's Reading Room or upstairs in the private dining room.

Private Screenings at Bluebird - What's New: London Venues Private Screenings at Bluebird

The Smirnoff Black Screenings have returned to Bluebird this summer following a highly successful inauguration last year. With a screening every Wednesday until 2 September, you can enjoy the likes of The Dark Knight and Casino Royale, preceded by a two-course menu and a Smirnoff Black cocktail. Bluebird has also launched its own private screening package, where you can view a film of your choice along with Champagne, canapés and ice-cream sundaes, from £55pp for groups of 25-60.

Hampers, Chocolates & Foodie Gifts - Corporate Gifts Hampers, Chocolates & Foodie Gifts

From fruit-filled baskets to boxes of deliciously tempting chocolates, with branded and bespoke options, a foodie gift has universal appeal.

Boris Bolts Final Beam of Park Plaza Westminster Bridge - What's New: London Venues Boris Bolts Final Beam of Park Plaza Westminster Bridge

We're big fans of Mayor Boris Johnson, so we made sure we were at the ceremonious 'bolting' into place of the final beam of Park Plaza Westminster Bridge (tel: 0844 415 6790) hotel on Tuesday. London's largest ever new build hotel is scheduled to open in spring 2010, with 16 storeys boasting uninterrupted views of the Houses of Parliament and Big Ben. The £350m hotel will feature more than 1,000 guest rooms and 2,700sq m of meeting space.

Congress Centre Announces Renovation Plans - What's New: London Venues Congress Centre Announces Renovation Plans

The Congress Centre has announced plans to refurbish its entire reception/registration area to create an impressive new entrance space. Work will commence later this month and will be completed by early September. The new registration area will include an impressive long glass registration desk complete with back-lit colour-changing discs and a 103-inch integrated plasma screen (the largest on the market). The aim is to make the area brighter and more welcoming, as well as facilitate client branding.

Met Bar Launches Cour-tea-san De-light - What's New: London Venues Met Bar Launches Cour-tea-san De-light

The Met Bar and luxury lingerie brand The Modern Courtesan have created the perfect daytime hospitality for female clients – sassy ‘Seduction Classes’ served with a delectable slice of cake on the side. Enjoy an afternoon menu of healthy cupcakes and cocktails and listen to a range of speakers, from best selling authors to burlesque performers. Tickets are priced at £50 per person and must be purchased in advance. The next event takes place on 8 August from 4-6pm.

Green Events at One Queen Anne's Gate  - What's New: London Venues Green Events at One Queen Anne's Gate

Conference facility has successfully passed the Green Tourism Business Scheme (GBTS) at Bronze level, thanks to its efforts to ensure all meeting materials are recyclable (even the pencils are produced from recycled newspaper). The venue is currently offering a 50% discount on meeting room hire.

The Compass Launches in Islington - What's New: London Venues The Compass Launches in Islington

On the site of the old Salmon & Compass pub in Chapel Market, The Compass (tel: 020 7837 3891), with its upstairs private dining/event space seating 40, makes a relaxing space for City workers to escape up the Northern Line. The room also has its own bar and can be used for screenings or presentations. Food is excellent and a notch above the usual gastropub fare.

Charles Boyd Launches New Business Hamilton Boyd - What's New: London Venues Charles Boyd Launches New Business Hamilton Boyd

Bucking recessionary trends, Charles Boyd is set to launch a striking new venue, Northumberland House State Rooms while forming a new business operating under the name Hamilton Boyd Ltd to manage it. 'I will continue to develop and support the Chester Boyd business while using my skills and experience of this niche sector to become a venue owner in my own right,' says Boyd, who will also maintain his ongoing commitment to Charlton House. The new venue, set to open early next year, will seat 500 and has a ballroom described by English Heritage as 'the grandest example of a Victorian ballroom in existence.'

New Pop-Up Opera Quarter Launches - What's New: London Venues New Pop-Up Opera Quarter Launches

Those mourning the closure of Double Club this weekend can take solace in the form of another pop-up venue, based in Covent Garden. Opera Quarter (tel: 020 7263 9304) sprawls over three floors of a Georgian townhouse, with private hire of the whole space holding 150. You can also hire any of the three funky floors, filled with contemporary art, separately. The venue is only open until the end of August so you'll have to be quick off the mark!

Mint's Cricket Drop-Off - What's New: London Venues Mint's Cricket Drop-Off

In anticipation of the wonderful summer of cricket ahead, Mint Catering (tel: 020 8459 2773) has put together a couple of excellent Ashes Drop-Offs, at £19.95pp including delivery (minimum numbers apply). Choose between the Pommie, with Pimms and traditional canapés, and the Aussie, with VB lager, shrimp and meat pie.

Del'Aziz Opens in Bermondsey Square - What's New: London Venues Del'Aziz Opens in Bermondsey Square

A vibrant addition to shiny new Bermondsey Square, the fifth branch of the successful Del’Aziz is also the biggest in the Eastern Mediterranean deli-restaurant chain. The colourful all-day café area makes a laidback setting for mezze & drinks, while sit-down dinners can be held in the self-contained 70-seater dining room. But the stand-out entertaining space is the raised Moroccan-style lounge bar, which can take 70 for a cocktail reception and has views onto the remains of the 12th-century crypt of Bermondsey Abbey through a glass floor. Alfresco areas on the square are also available.

What's New at the Oval - What's New: London Venues What's New at the Oval

Against the backdrop of one of the biggest cricket seasons that England has ever seen (The Ashes started this week), the Brit Oval has just received the go-ahead to build a new stand and hotel at the iconic ground. The stand will increase capacity to 25,000 while the four-star Arora International Hotel will provide 168 bedrooms and a much-needed accommodation option in the area. Other news from the venue - OCS has signed up for another 10 years of sponsorship of its flagship stand.

Ping Pong Delivers - What's New: London Venues Ping Pong Delivers

Dim-sum chain Ping Pong is launching a delivery service. Ping Pong Now brings its good-value Chinese cooking to your office door. The service has just launched at the Spitalfields branch and will be rolled out across the brand's 11 other locations before the end of the year. Set packages are available for up to 100, with a simple online ordering procedure, and the restaurant aims to deliver all orders within 50 minutes.

Parklife Launches with 4,000 Capacity - What's New: London Venues Parklife Launches with 4,000 Capacity

In the heart of the West End, opposite Selfridges on Oxford Street, Parklife is one of the most exciting new venues we've come across for a long time. Available for exclusive or part dry hire, with full event management, it has a mighty 3,950 standing capacity and is completely flexible and adaptable: suitable for product launches, award ceremonies, promotions, fashion shows and film premieres alike. Managed by Progressive Events, the space has been released for hire for a limited period of one year.

All Star Lanes Hosts Chilli Cook-Off - What's New: London Venues All Star Lanes Hosts Chilli Cook-Off

As London sweltered in the hottest day of the year so far, 20 chilli enthusiasts brought their finest con carne concoctions to All Star Lanes Brick Lane to compete for the honour of the best chilli in town. Official judges were made up of experienced restaurateurs and food writers, while members of the public turned out in force to cast their votes. Square Meal’s own designer Charlie Nelson walked away with the People’s Choice Award for his chorizo-based and originally titled ‘Charlie Con Carne’. He picks up a night All Star Lanes for him and his pals.

Enjoy the Sun at El Faro - What's New: London Venues Enjoy the Sun at El Faro

Lots of people have been calling our helpline asking for recommendations of outdoor event space - one of our favourites is El Faro, overlooking Crossharbour Dock. It's got a spacious 100-capacity outdoor terrace with calming views of the water, delicious Basque-style tapas and a live music licence. Browse our selection of other great waterside event spaces in London.

Albert & Pearl Celebrates its 1st Birthday - What's New: London Venues Albert & Pearl Celebrates its 1st Birthday

Upper Street's loveliest cocktail bar, Albert & Pearl (tel: 020 7354 9993), celebrates its first birthday this month, kicking off with a party on Friday featuring a DJ set from Huey of The Fun Loving Criminals and T4 presenter Jameela Jamil. The night will include complimentary punch, cocktails and food, as well as parlour games and prizes. A great chance to view their three plush private rooms.

Browns Bar & Brasserie Relaunches the Courtrooms - What's New: London Venues Browns Bar & Brasserie Relaunches the Courtrooms

The atmospheric Courtrooms conference and event space at Browns Bar & Brasserie Covent Garden has been refurbished. Built in 1908, the Courtrooms occupy the Grade II-listed site of the former Westminster Law Courts. The four function rooms retain many of the original features such as magnificent sweeping staircases, judges' benches and chandeliered ceilings. Following the sensitive refurbishment they now boast new interiors, carpets and prints and make an ideal venue for conferences, launches, weddings or parties for up to 150.

Pride Of Place - London Features Pride Of Place

As Savoy Place celebrates its centenary as the home of the IET, Louise Troy finds that this versatile venue is busier than ever.

Criterion Gets a Makeover - What's New: London Venues Criterion Gets a Makeover

One of the most historic and beautifully designed restaurants in London, the Criterion is now under new management and is looking better than ever following a recent refurb. The restaurant makes a grand setting for events, with seated dinners holding up to 150 or 250 for canapé receptions. Smaller parties can take The Terrace, a raised area at the back of the restaurant which holds up to 70 guests for canapés. .

Free Room Hire at the Commonwealth Club - What's New: London Venues Free Room Hire at the Commonwealth Club

To celebrate the beginning of summer, the Commonwealth Club off Trafalgar Square is offering free room hire for any evening event booked for July. No minimum spend applies to the offer, but guests must order both food and beverages.

Bluebird Becomes a Tennis Oasis - What's New: London Venues Bluebird Becomes a Tennis Oasis

Chelsea’s Bluebird is turning its outside area into a version of Centre Court for the two weeks of the Wimbledon Championships. Huge tennis balls suspended in a glass funnel will make a canopy for diners, while they sit in the service boxes of an Astroturf court. A Wimbledon-themed menu & cocktails will be available, based around plenty of strawberries & Champagne.

Royal Horticultural Halls Now Has Cheapest Parking  in Westminster - What's New: London Venues Royal Horticultural Halls Now Has Cheapest Parking in Westminster

The Royal Horticultural Halls now has the lowest parking rates in Westminster, after negotiating a fee of £12 per day with the local council. With parking in London hard to come by and often expensive, it’s a real coup for the venue. To use the rate, guests needn’t pre-book, simply download a form from the venue’s website and take it with you.

Wallace Collection Opens New Spaces - What's New: London Venues Wallace Collection Opens New Spaces

Two delightful rooms are newly available for private events at the beautiful Wallace Collection. They're to be used in conjunction with the existing gallery rooms as a drinks reception space for 150. The Boudoir and The West Room once formed part of the private apartment of Lady Wallace (her original writing desk still sits here); both have walls hung with silks and paintings by Reynolds and Vernet. The Landing and Fernery, where guests gather on arrival, have also been refurbished.

Kew Celebrates 250th Anniversary - What's New: London Venues Kew Celebrates 250th Anniversary

It’s 250 years since Kew Gardens opened and to commemorate, two free tickets to this year’s Summer Swing are offered for each person who confirms venue hire before 6 July. Alternatively, book an event at Cambridge Cottage and all guests will receive free Summer Swing entrance.

Happy Birthday Henry - What's New: London Venues Happy Birthday Henry

Henry VIII acceded to the throne 500 years ago and to commemorate, Hampton Court Palace, has organised new attractions for event organisers. The atmospheric Undercroft, where Henry and his various wives used to dance, has just been opened as an event space for 200 guests to do the same. Meanwhile, over at The Tower of London, the event team has organised a variety of private tours and events based around the new exhibition ‘Henry VIII: Dressed to Kill’, combining drinks receptions with private tours of the exhibition.

Altitude Becomes Altitude 360

The transformation of Westminster’s Altitude into Altitude 360 is now complete. After 16 days of round-the-clock construction, the venue is now ready to receive bookings, showcasing a 360-degree panorama stretching across London. The new rooms share the identical sleek, minimalist design as their predecessors, with the same aluminium retractable walls creating a maximum capacity of 600.

Met Bar New Cocktail List Comes to Square Meal - What's New: London Venues Met Bar New Cocktail List Comes to Square Meal

The Met Bar transformed our boardroom at Square Meal into a cocktail lounge on Monday to give us an exclusive preview of its new cocktail list and range of flavour-shot infusions. Innovatively arranged around taste, the cocktails are split into distinct categories, ranging from Light and Aromatic to Full Bodied and Spirited. The spicy grapefruit-based Amore Dolce proved a big hit, as did the low-calorie cakes they brought along, to give us a try of the Afternoon Delight tea selection. The raspberry cupcakes come with our whole-hearted recommendation!

New Event Space at Twickenham - What's New: London Venues New Event Space at Twickenham

The latest addition to the bulging portfolio of spaces at Twickenham’s South Stand is the Live Room, a flexible modern space that’s ideal for large set and screen productions. Tiered seating accommodates 400 for presentations or retracts to open up floor space for a reception of 600 guests.

All Star Lanes Loyalty Scheme - What's New: London Venues All Star Lanes Loyalty Scheme

All Star Lanes has introduced the Private Lanes Card, where for every £250 spent on a private event, the cardholder will receive one point on their card, equating to £10. This can then be redeemed on future bookings in the main halls or private rooms at any of the group’s venues, whether for personal or corporate use. Cardholders will also have access to exclusive offers and privileges throughout the year.

Corporate networking at Ronnie Scott's - What's New: London Venues Corporate networking at Ronnie Scott's

Celebrating its 50th birthday this year, Ronnie Scott’s (tel: 020 7960 0270) has set up a new networking initiative for the corporate event market, running every Thursday between 6pm and 8pm. It’s a timely reminder that you can hire the famous jazz bar for events, with the club on the ground floor holding 220 for a sit-down and the upstairs bar seating 80 or 150 for a drinks reception.

Silver Sturgeon's Great British Seaside - What's New: London Venues Silver Sturgeon's Great British Seaside

Woods River Cruises has launched a fabulous summer party package aboard the Silver Sturgeon. With a theme of 'Vogue does Brighton', the boat is decked out (pardon the pun) with driftwood pedestals, hurricane lanterns, ‘Sea Salt’ candles and Whistable Oyster Buckets filled with seaside plants, rope and shells. Food is courtesy of an on-deck barbecue and icecream and sorbet stall from rhubarb on the river and packages are £98pp.

Laughter Lounge at Vinopolis  - What's New: London Venues Laughter Lounge at Vinopolis

We visited Laughter Lounge at Vinopolis when it first launched late last year and were hugely impressed by the standard of the acts on show. The monthly night has gone from strength to strength since and tickets are still available for tomorrow night's performance, featuring Ian Stone, Geoff Boyz, Philberto and MC Electric Forecast . Tickets are £15 on the door and a current special offer means those booking a comedy ticket can also purchase a Grapevine tour at a reduced price. Click through for details.

Event Issue - Reap What You Sow  - News & Trends Event Issue - Reap What You Sow

Companies that invest in events during a financial downturn emerge stronger once the shoots of recovery start to break through. Here are a few of the reasons why...

The Avalon Opens New Garden in Balham - What's New: London Venues The Avalon Opens New Garden in Balham

Event organisers looking to host a memorable garden party are in luck this summer thanks to the unveiling of a truly lovely outdoor space at Balham’s The Avalon (tel: 020 8675 8613) pub. Landscape gardeners have been hard at work creating colourful flower beds, shrubbery, decking and marble ornaments to charming effect. Up to 165 guests can be seated here and there is more scope for outdoor entertaining on the large outdoor terraces at the front and on the side (accommodating 100 and 40 respectively).

Celebs Turn out for Fisher Productions Party - What's New: London Venues Celebs Turn out for Fisher Productions Party

The V&E team hobnobbed with the stars last night at Fisher Productions (020 8871 1978) 25th birthday rebrand party at The Dairy in Bloomsbury. Jesse Metcalfe, Peaches Geldof and Will Mellor mingled with geishas in robes fashioned from bubble wrap (who later turned hair stylists, creating some outrageous styles for brave volunteers) and retro air hostess waitresses serving delicious food from By Word Of Mouth. We particularly loved the Rococo-style lounge, with cakes by French Laundry patisserie chef Claire Clarke.

Animal Adventures at London Zoo - What's New: London Venues Animal Adventures at London Zoo

We enjoyed a magical after-hours VIP tour of ZSL London Zoo last week, part of which was a visit to the new ‘Animal Adventure’ attraction. It's a mini zoo within the zoo, with private terraces affording close-up views of the lions. The space is available for corporate hire during the summer months and is perfect for barbecues, cocktail parties and canapé receptions, holding up to 200.

Hampton Court Opens the Undercroft - What's New: London Venues Hampton Court Opens the Undercroft

2009 marks the 500th anniversary of Henry VIII's accession to the throne and Hampton Court Palace has opened the Undercroft as a new event space to celebrate. 200 people can dance the night away, just as Henry VIII did in his day; the room works well when teamed with the Great Hall for dining.

New Serpentine Bar & Kitchen Available for Private Events - What's New: London Venues New Serpentine Bar & Kitchen Available for Private Events

The Serpentine Bar & Kitchen (tel: 020 7706 8114)is the latest public building space to be rejuvenated by the benugo boys, Ben and Hugo Warner. With a delightful setting by the edge of the Serpentine in Hyde Park, it makes a great summer party destination. Capacities are 150 seated inside and 150 on the waterside terrace, with exciting culinary concepts planned throughout the summer months. Get in there quick though - the venue can only be hired six times over the summer months.

Three Tenners Menu at Bel Canto - What's New: London Venues Three Tenners Menu at Bel Canto

Live opera restaurant venue Bel Canto is launching a limited edition 'Three Tenners' menu in honour of José Carreras, who recently announced his retirement. Diners will be able to listen to delightful arias and duets while enjoying a three-course dinner for £30 (usually £55). The offer is only available from May 19-21 and also marks the arrival of the restaurant's new chef. Remember too the venue can be hired privately for 160.

Thanks for Coming to our Reader Event! - What's New: London Venues Thanks for Coming to our Reader Event!

We were delighted to welcome over 300 of you to our reader event at No.4 Hamilton Place last night, to kickstart the summer social season in style. Dish's delicious bowl food was accompanied by an elegant seafood bar, lashings of Pimm's and fizz, and a hog roast. Guests spilled out onto the terrace to enjoy the live band while others browsed the hospitality suite, showcasing the season's top events such as Royal Ascot and Chelsea Flower Show. The only thing missing was the sun but the fun party atmosphere more than made up for it.

15 Hatfields Celebrates its First Birthday - What's New: London Venues 15 Hatfields Celebrates its First Birthday

Eco-friendly conference centre 15 Hatfields celebrated its first birthday last night, following a successful first year of trading. The venue, which has applied for BS8901 accreditation, has proved that a green meeting space can not only be comfortable and modern, but cost effective too, with a competitive DDR of around £60 with AV and event management services included. The team is holding another birthday celebration tonight; if you'd like to attend, email [email protected] for an invite or show-round.

Wallace Collection Opens New Event Space - What's New: London Venues Wallace Collection Opens New Event Space

Having spent over a year under wraps, part of the first floor galleries at The Wallace Collection have emerged from an extensive refurbishment. While the decadent Gold Box Room will remain closed until the autumn, the Boudoir and the West Room will be available for drinks receptions at the end of this month. Tapestries have been specially commissioned to match the themes of the rooms, alongside some 'new' Old Masters.

Ladies Lunch Club Launches at Cheyne Walk Brasserie - What's New: London Venues Ladies Lunch Club Launches at Cheyne Walk Brasserie

This week saw the highly successful launch of the Ladies Lunch Club at Cheyne Walk Brasserie. Running monthly, the club is free to join and has a different theme each time, with the upcoming lunch on 10 June focusing on 'Beautiful Blooms', with florist Pascal Lavorel. £25 pp includes an hour-and-a-half talk from an expert, followed by lunch, wine and coffee/tea.

Karaoke Box Launches Smithfield Raw - What's New: London Venues Karaoke Box Launches Smithfield Raw

Last night saw the launch of Smithfield Raw at Karaoke Box Smithfield, a monthly event that aims to combine private karaoke with live performances in the bar. The Thirst and The Young Hearts will be playing but more excitingly, all karaoke rooms will be free of charge from midnight for the last hour of the evening, on a first come, first served basis.

Pearl Launches Chelsea Flower Show Cocktail - What's New: London Venues Pearl Launches Chelsea Flower Show Cocktail

The RHS Chelsea Flower Show runs from 19-23 May and to mark the occasion, head mixologist Gustavo Bertolucci at Pearl Restaurant & Bar (tel: 020 7829 7000) has created a limited edition cocktail. Garnished with a Singapore orchid, the refreshing blend is gin-based and is being served up at Pearl for the next six weeks.

The Auditorium at One Bishops Square Opens Its Doors - What's New: London Venues The Auditorium at One Bishops Square Opens Its Doors

City law firm Allen & Overy is opening up its prestigious building to events for the first time ever. The Auditorium – up there with the highest-spec conference facilities in London – has a meeting capacity of 320. Specially commissioned electronic works of art are on show throughout to the Sir Norman Foster-designed building, which is ultra-modern and lets in plenty of natural light. The in-house catering is a real strong suit, provided at a more-than-reasonable price.

Free Cocktail at Sugar Quay - What's New: London Venues Free Cocktail at Sugar Quay

Inneventive has announced dates for this year's summer parties at riverside venue Sugar Quay, and a complimentary cocktail per person is available for all booking confirmations made by 29 May. Up to 450 standing or 240 seated can be accommodated in the luxury marquee, overlooking Tower Bridge.

Private Dining at The Fellow - What's New: London Venues Private Dining at The Fellow

More new openings in King's Cross: The Fellow (tel: 020 7833 4395) is a dark and sultry pub and dining room with various spaces available for private hire, including an outdoor heated terrace and cocktail bar for 80. A private dining room on the top floor of the venue, with vintage armchairs and a long banqueting table, accommodates up to 12 for a seated dinner or 20 for a small drinks party.

Whisky Month at Albannach - What's New: London Venues Whisky Month at Albannach

It's the 250th anniversary of Robert Burns' birth this year, celebrated by Homecoming Scotland (as you'll know if you've read our 'What's New in Scotland' What's New in Scotland feature, in the spring magazine and online). Get your taste of the tartan at Albannach, where bespoke whisky tasting sessions are on offer each Tuesday in May in the Doon bar, at £30 pp.

Powder Puff Girls Makeover in London Eye - What's New: London Venues Powder Puff Girls Makeover in London Eye

The London Eye has launched a new package, offering a luxury beauty experience with the gorgeous 50s-style make-up collective, the Powder Puff Girls. The London Eye Beauty Capsule provides up to 15 guests with a unique opportunity to enjoy a glamorous makeover, while admiring London’s panoramic views & enjoying a crisp glass of Chablis Domaine de la Concierge. Prices are £900 per capsule with Chablis Domaine de la Concierge wine or £940 per capsule with Laurent Perrier Champagne.

Parties at The Alice House  - What's New: London Venues Parties at The Alice House

Party spaces for 180 are hard to come by in West Hampstead so the opening of The Alice House is welcome news. 200 light bulbs suspended from the ceiling give an unusual edge to the vintage-style decor and innovative cocktails are served alongside tapas and BBQs. An outdoor decking area makes a great spill-out space.

Spring Refurb for Silver Barracuda - What's New: London Venues Spring Refurb for Silver Barracuda

It's perfect weather for messing about on the river, particularly if you hold an event aboard Woods River Cruises' newly refurbished Silver Barracuda. A sprightly spring interior redesign by Osborne & Little sees heavy curtains and a dark red colour scheme replaced by modern prints incorporating sage green velvet, a striking cheetah print and a new divider curtain on the lower deck, perfect for partitioning to create a more intimate dining space. Summer party packages start at £122 +VAT and include a four-hour charter.

Get Listed on the new Twitter Directory for Events - What's New: London Venues Get Listed on the new Twitter Directory for Events

This week saw ‘Eventweeps’ flock to the SEA LIFE London Aquarium for the inaugural Events Industry Tweetup. It was organised by freelance journo Mike Fletcher and the Merlin Group’s twitterific marketeer, Peter Kerwood, who used the event to announce the launch of a new Twitter directory for event professionals. To find out more about the latest social networking phenomenon, read our hot-off-the press feature, sign up to Twitter and get yourself listed on EventTweeps. Don’t forget to follow the V&E team too!

Up on the Roof at Queen of Hoxton - What's New: London Venues Up on the Roof at Queen of Hoxton

Now the weather's getting sunnier, we're heading for the roof garden at hip new Shoreditch hangout The Queen of Hoxton (tel: 020 7422 0958), holding up to 250 for parties and resplendent with Astroturf, gazebo and pretty wrought-iron tables and chairs.

Bollywood Dancing at Moti Mahal - What's New: London Venues Bollywood Dancing at Moti Mahal

Get dancing Bollywood style at one of Moti Mahal’s (tel: 020 7240 9329) teambuilding dance classes. Groups of 12 to 15 can book a 45-minute session on Monday evenings or at weekends, hosted by the Bollywood Grooves Dance Company. The restaurant provides bindis and bangles aplenty to dress up in and the evening is rounded off with a two-course dinner.

Inc Group Opens Attic Bar in Docklands - What's New: London Venues Inc Group Opens Attic Bar in Docklands

Greenwich's Inc Group is opening no less than three new venues this year, the first of which is swanky cocktail bar The Attic (tel: 020 8305 3091), spectacularly situated on the 48th floor of the UK’s tallest ever residential building, Pan Peninsula in Canary Wharf. Available by appointment only for private hire on a small scale, the bar has a 100-person capacity and as you'd expect, amazing 360-degree views.

86 Park Lane Open for Daytime Events - What's New: London Venues 86 Park Lane Open for Daytime Events

Now the multi-million pound restoration project at Grosvenor House, A JW Marriot Hotel has finished, the Park Lane hotel has opened up its self-contained events facility 86 Park Lane to daytime use for the first time. The hotel has also been thinking up imaginative ways to celebrate its 80th birthday, one of which is the creation of its own breed of rose – look out for it at the RHS Chelsea Flower Show in May.

Be Afraid of Saw at Thorpe Park - What's New: London Venues Be Afraid of Saw at Thorpe Park

The world's first horror movie rollercoaster tie-in has launched at Thorpe Park. Taking its inspiration from the Saw movie series, the £13m rollercoaster SAW – The Ride is equally terrifying, with a 100ft ‘beyond vertical’ drop and three corkscrew inversions. Book an event at Lake View, Thorpe Park’s event space, and you get the opportunity to ride SAW once the park has closed to the public.

Wallace & Gromit Come to the Science Museum - What's New: London Venues Wallace & Gromit Come to the Science Museum

Friday saw animator Nick Park open an exciting new exhibition at the Science Museum, featuring some of the UK's first inventions to be awarded patents. ‘Wallace & Gromit Present a World of Cracking Ideas’ takes visitors through the pair’s home, using each room to explore different inventions through interaction, animation and creative activities. The exhibition is open for corporate hire outside of museum opening hours until October 31, with a capacity of 200 for drinks receptions.

Refurbished Cocktail Lounge for Ministry of Sound - What's New: London Venues Refurbished Cocktail Lounge for Ministry of Sound

Stalwart London club Ministry of Sound is fast approaching its 18th birthday and to celebrate, it has spent the past month refurbishing its first floor cocktail lounge. 'Think industrial, neon, raw and contemporary' say the management: it makes a great drinks reception space, with LED tubes lighting the walls and contemporary concrete seating looking down onto the Main Bar below. Capacities are 150 for a drinks reception, 40 for a sit-down dinner and 60 theatre-style.

The Open Championship - What's New: London Venues The Open Championship

After one of the most exciting climaxes the US Masters has seen in years, all eyes turn to the next golf major, the British Open, taking place from 16-19 July. Ayrshire’s remodelled Turnberry course welcomes the championship back for its 138th incarnation, promising exciting golf and top-notch hospitality with Sodexo Prestige at the helm. Three hospitality packages are on offer, all with a complimentary bar and excellent food offerings.

Aquum Opens in Clapham - What's New: London Venues Aquum Opens in Clapham

Just when you thought Clapham was full to the brim of trendy restaurants and bars, Aquum (tel: 020 7627 2726) opens this week, promising to bring 'the excitement and glamour of the West End to SW4.' A 4am licence makes it a good choice for parties - exclusive hire is 400 and there's a pre-requisite VIP area, holding 100.

British Music Experience Launches at The O2 - What's New: London Venues British Music Experience Launches at The O2

A new interactive, permanent exhibition opens today at The O2. The British Music Experience, in The O2 Bubble, takes you on a trip through popular music history, using state-of-the-art technology and iconic memorabilia over the last 60 years. The 3,730sq ft 'Finale Space' is available for private events, suitable for everything from cocktail receptions to award ceremonies to banquets. Capacities are 400 standing or 200 seated and private tours of the exhibition can be arranged. Let's rock!

Best of Britain & Ireland Exhibition  - What's New: London Venues Best of Britain & Ireland Exhibition

The Best of Britain & Ireland, in partnership with BBC Magazines & The Telegraph, is an exciting new show that brings the very best of the countries' heritage, food & drink, countryside, coast, plus active & luxury experiences to ExCeL London on 28 & 29 March. It's a great place to source ideas for corporate off-sites and Square Meal readers can claim a free pair of tickets to this exciting new event - simply click here and enter code SQM09.

Poker Nights at Meza, Soho - What's New: London Venues Poker Nights at Meza, Soho

Gather a group of colleagues together and head down to D&D London's Meza, who is raising the stakes every Tuesday with a new Texas Hold 'Em Poker night, transforming the Soho bar into a casino from 6.30pm onwards. Croupiers are on hand to offer advice and brief players on the rules, so even complete beginners can have a go. 'Proper' games start at 8pm.

Confex Visitor Numbers up by 5% - What's New: London Venues Confex Visitor Numbers up by 5%

Visitor numbers were up 5% at the 26th International Confex last week, with total attendance at 15,030 (subject to ABC audit), up from 14,807 last year. "The conference and events industry will come out of the recession faster than many other sectors," said event director Duncan Reid and there was certainly no sign of recessionary gloom on the Square Meal stand, where we welcomed hundreds of visitors who enjoyed free canapés courtesy of the inaugural Canapé Cup stand and copies of our 2009 Guide.

Royal Horseguards Hotel Relaunch - What's New: London Venues Royal Horseguards Hotel Relaunch

Last week saw the relaunch of The Royal Horseguards Hotel (tel: 020 7839 3344) following a £16m refurbishment plan. Now under Guoman ownership, all 280 bedrooms have been refurbed to five-star standards, alongside the lobby area, and a historian tour guide has been appointed to conduct tours of the conference and banqueting wing, One Whitehall Place.

Dine at Gaucho for Free Travel to O2 - What's New: London Venues Dine at Gaucho for Free Travel to O2

Getting to The O2 can be a bit of a mission, which is why we're excited about Gaucho's new initiative to help get their diners to the show on time. If you're dining pre-show at either Gaucho Canary or Gaucho Tower Bridge, you'll receive a voucher which gives you free travel via the Thames Clipper up the river to The O2. Don't forget, too, that there's a Gaucho within the O2 where you can organise a post-show party or book a VIP suite overlooking the main arena.

Refurb at No.4 Hamilton Place - What's New: London Venues Refurb at No.4 Hamilton Place

The elegant 40-seater Sopwith Room at No.4 Hamilton Place has had an attractive refurbishment, with new chandeliers, full repaint and recarpet plus new air conditioning. Still in situ is the copy of the Bleriot XI propellor blade, the first plane to cross the English Channel in 1909 and given to the venue by the Queen, plus photos of famous aviator Claude Graham-White.

Cabinet War Rooms Celebrates 70th Anniversary - What's New: London Venues Cabinet War Rooms Celebrates 70th Anniversary

2009 sees the Cabinet War Rooms commemorating the 70th anniversary of its wartime opening and the 25th anniversary of its opening to the public. To celebrate, a seven-course gourmet taster menu has been created for intimate dinners in the newly refurbished Switch Room or Harmsworth Room for up to 30. New summer DDRs starting from £70pp will also be introduced from April, plus further appealing offers.

Jurys Clifton Ford Relaunches as The Marylebone Hotel - What's New: London Venues Jurys Clifton Ford Relaunches as The Marylebone Hotel

Still part of the Jurys hotel group but now joining their luxury Doyle Collection, Jurys Clifton Ford has just relaunched as The Marylebone Hotel (tel: 020 7 486 6600) following a multi-million pound refurbishment. A new suite of six naturally lit meeting rooms seat up to 70 and be sure to pay a visit to in-house brasserie 108 Marylebone Lane, who use specialist local suppliers such as La Fromagerie and The Ginger Pig.

Canapé Cup at Confex - What's New: London Venues Canapé Cup at Confex

We're looking forward to seeing you all at this week's International Confex at Earl's Court from 24-26 February & this year there's a special treat in store. Visitors to our new Canapé Cup feature stand (R612) get to sample a tempting selection of canapés, including the winning entry of last year's inaugural Canapé Cup: Sodexo's delicious A Taste of the Season. We'll also be giving away free copies of the new V&E 2009 Guide at the Square Meal stand (R615). See you there!

Covent Garden Hotel Refurbishes Meeting Rooms - What's New: London Venues Covent Garden Hotel Refurbishes Meeting Rooms

Along with Brasserie Max (which now has a separate bar area), the two cosy Blue and Red meeting rooms at Firmdale's Covent Garden Hotel (tel: 020 7287 4434) have been refurbished, each flexible enough to act as private dining room, boardroom meeting space or drinks reception space. The rooms adjoin the private screening room and don't forget the cosy upstairs library for six.

Inneventive Launches Cookery Experiences at Vinopolis - What's New: London Venues Inneventive Launches Cookery Experiences at Vinopolis

Inneventive is teaming up with Vinopolis to offer the ultimate in cookery teambuilding. Launching in March, 'cooking experiences' will take place in a purpose-built studio kitchen for groups of 15-100, cooking up delicious meals under the watchful eye of expert chefs. You get to enjoy the fruits of your labours over lunch or dinner, plus shopping for ingredients at Borough Market & Vinopolis wine matchings can also form a fun part of the day.

Our Favourite 'Snap the Snow' Pictures - What's New: London Venues Our Favourite 'Snap the Snow' Pictures

Thank you to everyone who entered our 'Snap the Snow' competition last week - click through for some of our favourite pictures, including a beautiful pink pelican at London Zoo and a snow-covered Lord's Cricket Ground (and see if you can spot the fake!) It's not too late to submit your photos (fresh snow is forecast for this week after all), so keep them coming to [email protected]. The pick of the pics will also take pride of place in our autumn/winter issue later this year. Happy snapping and be careful out there!

Have Your Fortune Read at Kai - What's New: London Venues Have Your Fortune Read at Kai

Celebrate Chinese New Year in one of the delightful private dining rooms at Kai (tel: 020 7493 8988) on 31 January or 6 February and enjoy a free reading from one of the world's leading astrologers, Ting-Foon Chik. The restaurant has also created three tempting new dishes to welcome in the New Year. To book, contact Natalie on 020 7493 8988.

Boris Opens Forman's Fish Island - What's New: London Venues Boris Opens Forman's Fish Island

Mayor Boris Johnson (pictured here with Square Meal’s Annica Wainwright, Laura Dickinson and Julia Phelps) has officially opened Forman’s Fish Island (tel: 020 8525 2399), a brand new event venue with unobstructed views of the 2012 Olympic Stadium. The salmon-shaped building is home to Britain’s oldest salmon smoker and houses two sizeable event spaces (accommodating 200 and 600 guests respectively) alongside a 40-cover restaurant, extensive kitchens and the smokehouse itself.

BAFTA Nominations Announced - What's New: London Venues BAFTA Nominations Announced

The full list of nominations for the Orange British Academy Film Awards 2009 have been announced by Gemma Arterton and Hayley Atwell at 195 Piccadilly - BAFTA, with Kate Winslet (fresh from her two Golden Globes) nominated twice in the Leading Actress category, alongside fellow Brit Kristin Scott Thomas. We'll be bringing you exclusive, behind-the-scenes coverage of the BAFTAs (taking place on Sunday 8 February at the Royal Opera House) in our Spring issue!

Novotel London West Unveil Refurb Plans - What's New: London Venues Novotel London West Unveil Refurb Plans

Already boasting some of the most extensive C&B facilities in London, Novotel London West has just announced extensive refurbishment plans that will see the group & conference arrival desks upgraded, along with a restaurant and lounge bar refurb and the addition of a second restaurant and new cocktail bar. Finally the Chablis Suite will be redesigned, with floating sound-proofed walls added. Full plans will be unveiled at Confex in February 2009.

Madame Zingara Comes to Battersea - What's New: London Venues Madame Zingara Comes to Battersea

Here's a novel way to entertain clients over the next three months. Fresh from a sell-out two-year tour in Cape Town, Madame Zingara's Theatre of Dreams (tel: 0844 338 8888) comes to Battersea Power Station from December 12, under the canvas of one of the world's only remaining Spiegeltents. A four-course meal is served alongside a theatrical display of acrobatics, singing, actors and performers, with no guest further than eight metres away from the stage.

Thomas Lyte Trophy Unveiled  - What's New: London Venues Thomas Lyte Trophy Unveiled

Yesterday saw the unveiling of a new rugby trophy honouring the late Sir Edmund Hillary and his contribution to New Zealand and Great Britain. Thomas Lyte Silver was commissioned by the RFU to create the shield, which will be contested for the first time tomorrow at the Investec Challenge Test match, when the All Blacks take on England at Twickenham. Created from 9kg of Sterling Silver, it will be presented to the winning team by Sir Edmund Hillary's widow, Lady Hillary.

Private Dining at Bob Bob Ricard  - What's New: London Venues Private Dining at Bob Bob Ricard

The curiously named Bob Bob Ricard (tel: 020 3145 1000), all-day English-style brasserie, has opened in Soho this week, on the former site of Circus. With a striking design by David Collins, inspired by first-class Edwardian train travel, the sexy private dining room (The Owner's Salon), seating up to 16, is open until 3am, as is the downstairs basement bar.

Doubletree® Makes London Debut - What's New: London Venues Doubletree® Makes London Debut

Doubletree launched their first UK hotel in Cambridge earlier this year, Aberdeen soon followed and now the third opening is in London, rebranding the Courthouse Hotel as the Courthouse Doubletree by Hilton - Regent Street (tel: 020 7297 5555). Event facilities include the delightful rooftop terrace for cocktail receptions and one of the biggest private cinemas in London, seating 94.

Hit the Slopes at the O2 Arena - What's New: London Venues Hit the Slopes at the O2 Arena

Cheer yourself up post New Year slump by heading down to the O2 arena, where an artificial twin 45m ski slope (The Kiss 100 Slopes) is in situ until 25 January. Aside from skiing and snowboarding, you can try out snow tubes (inflatable sledges). Book the slopes exclusively for 35 people: one slope is £800 and includes two instructors and ski hire; both slopes is £1400. To book, contact Nicola Lucas on 020 8463 2125 or email [email protected]

Get Your Skates On - What's New: London Venues Get Your Skates On

We've put together a round-up of seasonal skating rinks, all of which are now open and available for private hire. The Natural History Museum has particularly appealing corporate packages, including hire of a private area in the Cafe Bar for two hours of post-skating Pimm's Winter Cup drinking!

Make a Meal of it at Skylon - What's New: London Venues Make a Meal of it at Skylon

Bringing new meaning to the term liquid lunch, the bar at Skylon has introduced a three-course cocktail ‘menu’, with drinks served alongside matching canapés. Our favourite is the ‘starter’, which sees a lingonberry Champagne cocktail matched to venison carpaccio with beetroot and hazelnuts. This is followed by a rosemary and lychee martini ‘main’ with hot-smoked salmon, plus a spiced bourbon cocktail with chunks of nougat for ‘dessert’. The three courses cost £35.

Biba Makeover for Babylon - What's New: London Venues Biba Makeover for Babylon

Restaurant with a view Babylon has just reopened with a glamorous new look. Inspired by the building's history (iconic fashion brand Biba was based here in the Seventies), the interior has been brightened and lightened, with flock wallpaper, green leather chairs and colourful artwork. The private dining room, seating 12, has also been refurbished with cream wallpaper, softly lit by chandeliers.

Chef's Table at Corrigan's Mayfair  - What's New: London Venues Chef's Table at Corrigan's Mayfair

With a 30-seater private dining room and a delightful chef's table seating 10, newly opened Corrigan's Mayfair (tel: 020 7499 9943) is bound to be popular with private diners looking for a fabulous fine-dining option in the West End. The chef's table (aka The Club Room) has a glass partition with the kitchen, offering fascinating views of the chefs and the pass.

New Members' Club Molton House  - What's New: London Venues New Members' Club Molton House

Owned by Nick Valentine (Cuckoo Club owner) and with a membership committee numbering the likes of Tracy Emin and Alice Temperley, Molton House (tel: 020 7493 1688), opening this week, means business. The five-storey Georgian townhouse in South Molton Street has a 120-capacity for private events, with the cocktail bar holding a further 45, and there are private booths dotted throughout.

City Gets Two New Corney & Barrows - What's New: London Venues City Gets Two New Corney & Barrows

Dependably stylish City and Docklands bar chain, Corney & Barrow, has opened two new bars. New Street Square, located on the western-most fringes of the City near Holborn, encompasses fine dining in a 14-seater private room plus exclusive weekend hire for 200; while Lime Street, near Bank (and the first Corney & Barrow to serve cask ale from the Cotswold’s Hook Norton Brewery), has private dining for 12, an 80-capacity lounge bar available for weekday hire and exclusive weekend hire for up to 350.

Bincho Yakitori Opens New Bar - What's New: London Venues Bincho Yakitori Opens New Bar

A new bar and sake lounge opens at Japanese Soho favourite Bincho Yakitori (tel: 020 7803 0858) this week. A slinky lounge space holds up to 40 for private hire and there's an extensive list of sake and shochu, not to mention Japanese cocktails and an extended wine list, all overseen by renowned 'master of Sake' Shige Seo.

All Star Lanes Comes to East End - What's New: London Venues All Star Lanes Comes to East End

This week sees the opening of All Star Lanes, Brick Lane, the third in London for the company & the largest yet, with a private room holding 120 and boasting three bowling lanes (Holborn and Bayswater each have two). Set on a mezzanine floor above the main bowling hall, the room has a luxurious American 80s penthouse feel, with its own cocktail bar and kitchen station in the room, so canapés or private dining for smaller groups can be accommodated. For larger groups, the main bowling hall is also available for exclusive hire.

Give to Charity at One Queen Anne's Gate - What's New: London Venues Give to Charity at One Queen Anne's Gate

We're glad to see conference venues getting greener and more charitable: the latest is One Queen Anne's Gate (tel: 020 7344 1884), who are suggesting that for every bottle of chilled tap water clients consume during an event, they make a voluntary donation to the Tap into WaterAid programme. All donations fund life-saving water, sanitation and hygiene education projects in the developing world.

Slim Jim's on Upper Street - What's New: London Venues Slim Jim's on Upper Street

The UK's first 'LA-style dive bar' has opened in Islington's bar-packed Upper Street. Slim Jim's Liquor Store (tel: 020 7354 4363) has a lived-in, retro feel, with bare-brick walls, 50s-style stools and diner booths. Private hire for up to 40 can be accommodated any night of the week, or exclusive hire can be arranged on Monday nights. Fine whiskies and rums complement a musical backdrop of guitar-based rock and roll.

Dynamic FX Becomes Magicians.co.uk - What's New: London Venues Dynamic FX Becomes Magicians.co.uk

Europe's leading magic company has a new name and identity. Dynamic FX has become Magicians.co.uk, to better reflect the nature of the company's core business. An approved supplier at The Magic Circle Headquarters, it has been delivering magical entertainment and services for nearly 20 years, and in 2007 was voted one of the UK's top 20 entertainment companies.

21 at Home House - What's New: London Venues 21 at Home House

Swanky private members' club Home House (tel: 020 7670 2000) has bought up the building next door and opened it as Home House at 21 Portman Square. Hire the very sexy House Bar & Lounge designed by architect du jour Zaha Hadid, with a 60-person capacity, stocked with fabulous cocktails & vintage Champagnes. There are five further private hire spaces, all equally stylish. The space also boasts two bedrooms, which can be opened up and turned into a two-bedroom apartment, plus a state-of-the-art gym and spa.

Brunel Comes to Battersea - What's New: London Venues Brunel Comes to Battersea

S Bar in Battersea Bridge Road has now become The Brunel (tel: 020 7223 3322), so-called as Brunel once had a factory over the road. The bar is dark, moody, sexy and beautifully designed, a theme which follows through to the upstairs 200-capacity events space, Kingdom. Designed to look like a New York loft apartment, hire is free and the room has its own bar, complete with late licence. There is also a Conservatory holding 50.

Green & Red Opens New Basement - What's New: London Venues Green & Red Opens New Basement

Ever popular Mexican Tequila bar Green & Red launches a new basement venue this week, with a party on Thursday which you can sign up for on their website. It's a 200-capacity space (320 if you include the existing upstairs restaurant) called Chamucos (tel: 020 7749 9670) with a late licence, loungey leather seating and funky decor.

Fireside Dining at Clos Maggiore - What's New: London Venues Fireside Dining at Clos Maggiore

When the weather in London is colder than Moscow, it's time to head indoors and pay a visit to cosy Clos Maggiore in Covent Garden, where they've just started lighting their delightful log fire in the private dining room. Seating 30, amid warm, oak-panelled surroundings, it's a lovely place to wind away a winter evening, Even better, exclusive hire is currently free of charge.

Tasting Menus Only at Vanilla - What's New: London Venues Tasting Menus Only at Vanilla

Sophisticated Fitzrovia bar/restaurant Vanilla has just gone 'tasting menu only', apparently the first restaurant in London to do so in the evening, and the good news is that the menus will be available for private events too. Head chef Izu Ani (ex The Square) feels his clean, fresh cooking style is better suited to smaller dishes, and has devised three tasting menus, of four, six or 10 courses.

New Kitchen at Great George Street - What's New: London Venues New Kitchen at Great George Street

Delegates have a new reason for booking events at prestigious Westminster venue One Great George Street. There's a new £1m kitchen and in-house restaurant Brasserie One has been refurbished, and is now available (alongside the Café Bar) for private hire on weekday evenings for up to 100. The food is delicious and the restaurant is open to the public at lunchtime, so why not pop in and taste the wares?

Steak Out at Gaucho Smithfield - What's New: London Venues Steak Out at Gaucho Smithfield

What location could be more appropriate for Gaucho's latest launch than that of Smithfields? Enjoy the award-winning Argentinian chain's tasty steaks at the 135-capacity restaurant, together with a bar and private dining room for 12. Alongside the fine meat and Ceviches, diners can enjoy views of the listed buildings of Smithfield Market & the City skyline beyond. Unlike other venues in the area, it's open seven days a week, pleasing City workers and residents alike.

Boris Launches Altitude 360 - What's New: London Venues Boris Launches Altitude 360

Exciting new developments are afoot at Millbank Tower. Tuesday night saw the unveiling of plans to double the capacity of lofty events venue Altitude in early 2009. Unveiling those plans was none other than our very own Mayor, Boris Johnson, who inspired attendees with his enthusiasm for the project, which will open up the other half of the L-shaped venue to more stunning views of the city skyline. The contemporary venue will also rename itself, becoming (appropriately enough) Altitude 360.

Get High at Paramount - What's New: London Venues Get High at Paramount

Just in time for the nights drawing in, new members' club Paramount (tel: 020 7379 5484) opened last week, 35 floors up in the Centre Point building. The 31st floor events space is accessible to non-members, with its own entrance and lift, plus a dramatic 10m long bar facing west to catch the sunset. The room holds up to 350 standing or 160 seated.

Last Days of Decadence - What's New: London Venues Last Days of Decadence

We're loving the name of the latest addition to the ever-burgeoning Shoreditch bar scene: The Last Days of Decadence (tel: 020 7729 2896). The bar has an old-fashioned 1920s glamour about it and is available for private hire Sunday through Thursday, with a 330 capacity. The basement bar can also be hired independently for 200.

Book Ahead for Vinopolis Comedy Nights - What's New: London Venues Book Ahead for Vinopolis Comedy Nights

Vinopolis is branching into comedy, hosting Laughter Lounge on the last Friday of every month. For a very reasonable £10 in advance or £12 on the door, you get to view three hours of excellent stand-up from the likes of Paul Tonkinson and Brendan Dempsey, alongside a Borough Market-inspired menu (not included in the ticket price).

Third London Opening for The Hub - What's New: London Venues Third London Opening for The Hub

There are 'Hubs' in twelve cities worldwide: London already has two in Islington and the South Bank. Now a third has just opened: The Hub King's Cross (tel: 020 7833 9991), offering three levels of private event space in a striking Grade II-listed building, available on selected week nights and at weekends. Maximum capacity is 130.

Trafalgar Events - What's New: London Venues Trafalgar Events

In a convenient location just off Trafalgar Square, Trafalgar Events opens this week, ready for business with its seven rooms using colour therapy to suit the mood of your meeting. The basement can be used as a disco or screening room and has a small courtyard, plus a balcony will open by Christmas on the first floor.

America Square Open for Business - What's New: London Venues America Square Open for Business

America Square in the City is now open for business. With an original piece of 2,000-year old Roman Wall running through it, extensive meeting spaces include seven meeting rooms, seating from two to 200. The venue is run by Cavendish Conference Venues and will be the fourth addition to their existing three West End venues.

Canapé Cup Winner Announced - What's New: London Venues Canapé Cup Winner Announced

This year's V&E show saw the launch of The Square Meal Canapé Cup competition. 10 catering companies and venues with affiliated caterers all submitted delicious entries but the winner was Sodexo Prestige with its buttermilk and rosemary sweetcorn fritter, peppered confit rabbit with apple glaze and watercress puree. Second place went to The Cinnamon Club and the-recipe came third. Congratulations to all involved!

Square Meal V&E Show Boasts 14% Visitor Increase - What's New: London Venues Square Meal V&E Show Boasts 14% Visitor Increase

We were thrilled to welcome over 7,000 of you to Old Billingsgate on 17 and 18 September for our fourth annual Venues & Events exhibition. Another resounding success, we had a huge number of new exhibitors and some great new features such as the Square Meal Canapé Cup; our 'insider knowledge' seminars were also more popular than ever. It's encouraging to see that even in what was a terrible week for the financial sector, we managed to buck the gloomy news with a 14 per cent increase in turnout too.

V&E Show Seminars Live on Web - What's New: London Venues V&E Show Seminars Live on Web

We were delighted by your feedback from our show seminars last week and due to popular demand, we've put all our presentations online for you in PDF format. Click through to read and download!

Sing for your Supper - What's New: London Venues Sing for your Supper

At last an alternative to Sarastro: Le Bel Canto has just opened in the City. Already a big hit in Paris, it's essentially a programme of live opera, sung by professional singers and accompanied by pianists, alongside excellent three course dinners. Great for a private party for up to 160 or tables within normal service for up to 30.

VR5 at The Egg - What's New: London Venues VR5 at The Egg

Though the likes of The Cross, Canvas and The Key have closed in King's Cross, The Egg is still going strong and has opened a new top floor, VR5 (tel: 020 7609 8364). It's a very funky space, holding 275 for a party, and has its own entrance and smoking terrace, along with some rather adventurous light projections.

Kings Place Open for Business - What's New: London Venues Kings Place Open for Business

Kings Place is now open for business in King's Cross, with all sorts of flexible spaces up for hire, including London's first new concert hall in London since the Barbican in 1982, holding up to 420, or there's the Battlebridge Room overlooking Regent's Canal, for up to 330. Two art galleries make attractive drinks reception spaces and there's a private dining room for up to 20.

In Fashion at May Fair Hotel - What's New: London Venues In Fashion at May Fair Hotel

London Fashion Week has started and this year's official hotel is the May Fair. If you're a fashion junkie, hang out in the lobby this week, where designers, supermodels and buyers will be holding court. The hotel has all the right credentials, with the largest private screening room in town, and the Crystal Room, boasting the biggest Baccarat chandelier in Europe.

My Square Meal - What's New: London Venues My Square Meal

We've launched some snazzy new features on our website which means you can create your own profile and start building your own mini Venues & Events guide. Create your own lists (say, 'Christmas party ideas' or 'Private dining venues') or build up a list of favourite caterers and party planners, and there's even the capability to email the list to your colleague. For more information click here, or if you’re raring to go, simply login with the box on the left (you may need to register if you don’t already have a Square Meal account).

New Events Venue in Covent Garden - What's New: London Venues New Events Venue in Covent Garden

Covent Garden has a new dedicated meetings and events space right by the Piazza. Formerly the Theatre Museum, The Flower Cellars (tel: 020 7170 9133) is a great blank canvas space, with two floors of event space holding up to 250 on the ground floor and 750 on the lower ground, with bare brick and whitewashed walls. The Hospital Club Events Company will oversee bookings and events.

New Restaurant for St Pancras - What's New: London Venues New Restaurant for St Pancras

Following the launch of the glamorous St Pancras Champagne Bar earlier this year, restaurant, bar and private dining room St Pancras Grand (tel: 020 7870 9900) is following hot on its heels. With specially created menus for breakfast, lunch and dinner, as well as an all-day menu, food is proudly British and seasonal, with a strictly European wine list. Private dining for 10 is the perfect way to welcome your visitors off Eurostar.

Reopening for Just St James - What's New: London Venues Reopening for Just St James

Delightfully grand restaurant and bar Just St James has emerged from a summer makeover looking completely revitalised. The soaring ceilings, ornate chandeliers, spiral staircase and funky glass lift all remain, but the dining area has been moved and raised to ensure a pleasant view of St James below, and a new lighting system makes the space brighter. Host a drinks reception in the exclusive new Clicquot Lounge on the Gallery Level or take over the restaurant, holding 120.

Hang on to Summer in the City - What's New: London Venues Hang on to Summer in the City

We've found a way to hang onto summer all through the winter, by booking a private party at the Leadenhall branch of Revolution (tel: 020 7929 4233). It's all thanks to the Real Sunlight Machine. Long popular with the Swedes, it produces incredibly realistic (and totally harmless) rays of light and heat. The Revolution guys can lay on a sandy beach, palm trees and loungers to complete the experience. If popular, Revolution plan to roll it out across their 55 vodka bars nationwide.

St James's Reopens with Michelin Chef - What's New: London Venues St James's Reopens with Michelin Chef

Reopening this week is St. James's Hotel and Club (tel: 020 7316 1600) following an 18 month refurb. Dating back to 1892 (when it opened as a gentlemen's chamber for the aristocracy), the elegant townhouse has four very stylish private dining/meeting rooms, catering for up to 120, and with Michelin-starred German chef Dieter Müller at the helm, food will be faultless.

New Lucky Voice in Upper Street - What's New: London Venues New Lucky Voice in Upper Street

Today sees the opening of London's second Lucky Voice (tel: 020 7354 6280) in Islington's ever-popular Upper Street. Expect the same formula as Soho but on a larger, more luxurious scale, with seven private rooms seating between eight and 15, and a roomy, street-facing bar open to singers and non-singers alike.

Just Desserts at Pearl - What's New: London Venues Just Desserts at Pearl

We've come late to Pearl's (tel: 020 7829 7000) dessert cocktails but after a recent tasting, we can't get enough of them. It's hard to choose a favourite out of the five: rhubarb custard crumble, Bramley apple pie, strawberries and cream, lemon meringue pie and raspberry sherry trifle. Enjoy one in place of dessert in Silhouette, Pearl's gorgeous 12-seater private dining room.

Casablanca Comes to Plateau - What's New: London Venues Casablanca Comes to Plateau

Plateau (tel: 020 7715 7100) is channelling a Moroccan vibe this month, with its al fresco terrace offering such delights as belly dancing, snake charming, tarot reading and henna body art during the working week. The terrace can also be hired for events (thankfully it has a canopy), along with two stylish private rooms inside.

Private Dining at L'Anima - What's New: London Venues Private Dining at L'Anima

City newcomer L'Anima (tel: 020 7422 7000) has been garnering rave reviews since its opening last month, so we thought it high time we told you about its gorgeous private dining room. Seating up to 14 along a decadent green marble table, surrounded by limestone walls, the room is designed to recall the refectory of a medieval monastery (the result is a lot less austere than it sounds!) Menus are specially created for private diners and can also be enjoyed in the mezzanine area of the main restaurant space.

Fresh Options at Hampton Court - What's New: London Venues Fresh Options at Hampton Court

There are some upsides to the credit crunch. For example, Hampton Court (tel: 020 3166 6507) has just launched a non-exclusive hire package for companies on a budget, meaning you no longer have to hire the entire palace on an exclusive basis. Up to 200 guests can now choose from a range of packages arranged around different areas of the venue.

Buddha Bar - At Last! - What's New: London Venues Buddha Bar - At Last!

We thought the day would never come but Buddha Bar (tel: 020 3371 7777) has finally opened, on the north banks of the Thames by Waterloo Bridge. Expect seductive decor and sexy music in the 700-capacity space, with a sushi bar, huge ground floor restaurant and mezzanine lounge. The ultimate space for private parties...

Fabric Goes to Greenwich - What's New: London Venues Fabric Goes to Greenwich

The finishing touches are being made to Fabric's new O2 opening. Matter will open mid September, with a gigantic 2,600 capacity, and is set to play host to world-class DJs and bands. The third floor is perfect for private hire, with its own entrance and bespoke booths overlooking the main dancefloor, with each booth housing its own personal sound manipulation if the music gets too loud! Just to add to the fun, Thames Clipper boats will be running throughout the night to whisk you back to central London.

Mint Leaf Sibling Opens in City - What's New: London Venues Mint Leaf Sibling Opens in City

From the team behind award-winning Mint Leaf restaurant and bar in Suffolk Place comes Mint Leaf Lounge (tel: 020 7930 9020). Bravely opening in a month when much of London is out of town, the brand's fabulous modern Indian cuisine and excellent cocktails are sure to attract Bank-based punters in this former banking hall, with a mezzanine Champagne bar holding 60 for private functions, private dining for 50 downstairs and exclusive hire for 300.

New Five Star for Heathrow - What's New: London Venues New Five Star for Heathrow

You may have read in our current issue about Albert Roux's chef's table and boardroom at Brasserie Roux, in Terminal 5's new five star Sofitel Heathrow (tel: 020 8757 7647), as well as Vivre, an innovative dining experience for conference delegates. The hotel is now fully open for business, with 45 meeting rooms catering for up to 1,700. Pass through next time you're jetting off...

Al Fresco Dining at Bentley's - What's New: London Venues Al Fresco Dining at Bentley's

Take advantage of the sunshine and head to Bentley's (tel: 020 7734 4756) in Mayfair, where an elegant al fresco dining area has just been unveiled. Comfortably fitted with chairs, marble tables, navy parosols and plants, the space is perfect to unwind with a glass of wine and one of Richard Corrigan's signature dishes, or a range of oysters from the Oyster Bar. Tucked away from the hustle and bustle on the newly pedestrianised Swallow Street, the area is open from noon until 10.30pm each day and can seat up to 24.

Casino Available for Exclusive Hire - What's New: London Venues Casino Available for Exclusive Hire

The Casino at The Empire, London’s largest casino, is now available for exclusive private hire for up to 1,800 people. The snazzy West End-venue, formerly home to the renowned Empire Ballroom, offers 50,000sq feet of space for exclusive private events.

House Basement Opens in Soho  - What's New: London Venues House Basement Opens in Soho

Located beneath Café Boheme at 17 Old Compton Street, House Basement (tel: 020 7292 0126) is the latest addition to the ever-expanding Soho House empire. Drawing inspiration from a traditional French sitting room, the basement features neutral decor, deep sofas and snug armchairs, offset by home furnishings and a relaxed atmosphere. Available during the day for private hire, the space can accommodate 50 seated or up to 80 for drinks parties. A menu is also available offering traditional French food.

Rejuvenate this Summer - What's New: London Venues Rejuvenate this Summer

City-based Energy Clinic has changed its name to The Rejuvenation Centre. The Feng Shui-ed venue guarantees to boost your energy, performance and stamina levels with just one session of its signature Rejuvenation treatment, which combines a Rejuvenating Tea ceremony, meridian massage and practical tips to re-balance your energy levels.

Alfresco Terrace Opens at belowzero - What's New: London Venues Alfresco Terrace Opens at belowzero

Heddon Street is now a mecca for chilled out alfresco drinking and dining; belowzero is the latest to join the club, with its colourful new terrace. Various ongoing offers, such as a lunch deal of two courses and a beer or glass of wine for £16 (or £12.50 for two courses), selected bottles of white and rose for £10 between 5-7pm and live music on Tuesday and Wednesday nights, make it a yet more attractive proposal. Don't forget too, that belowzero has some gorgeous private event spaces inside, for up to 90 (or take over the whole place for 270).

Members' Club Bureau Opens for Private Events - What's New: London Venues Members' Club Bureau Opens for Private Events

When Kingly Court-based private members' club Bureau (tel: 020 7494 4386) opened earlier this month, we were disappointed that this slick, New York-style basement bar was only available for private hire to non-members on a Sunday. But hurray - we've just heard that it is now open for weekday or night bookings too, with a capacity of 80 for drinks and gourmet bar food.

Tom Aikens Launches Classic Menu for Private Dining - What's New: London Venues Tom Aikens Launches Classic Menu for Private Dining

Now there's the chance to sample all of Tom Aikens' signature dishes in private dining, seating up to ten, with matched wines chosen by Sommelier of the Year 2008 Gearoid Devaney. Enjoy the Classic Menu at £100 per person (with wines, £175 per person), with such delights as poached lobster tail and cured venison with venison carpaccio.

Number Twelve on Masterchef - What's New: London Venues Number Twelve on Masterchef

Switch on to BBC One tonight at 8pm and spot Italian restaurant Number Twelve on Celebrity Masterchef, as the three remaining finalists fine tune their cooking at top London restaurants. The restaurant has recently been nominated as Best Italian Restaurant at the London Restaurant Awards and can be hired exclusively for up to 70; combine with a meeting in one of Ambassadors Bloomsbury's meeting rooms (the restaurant sits on its ground floor).

Aston Hall Opens the West Wing - What's New: London Venues Aston Hall Opens the West Wing

One of South Yorkshire's finest hotels, Aston Hall, has just opened a new West Wing to its 1772 main house. Mirroring its beautiful Georgian architecture, the Wing adds a further 29 bedrooms and two new meeting rooms, holding up to 30 people boardroom or 60 theatre style.

New Private Members' Club in West End - What's New: London Venues New Private Members' Club in West End

Not another private members' club I hear you cry? Well, Victory (tel: 020 7240 0700) is thankfully something a little bit different. Newly opened, membership is free but granted on the premise that you have a story to tell: only creative, witty raconteurs need apply. All areas of the imaginative New Oxford Street venue are also available for private hire, from Victory Street (a movie set-inspired avenue with shop windows) to a Library and Apartment.

The Kitchen Opens in Parsons Green - What's New: London Venues The Kitchen Opens in Parsons Green

Swiftly following on the heels of L'Atelier des Chefs comes The Kitchen (tel: 020 7736 8067): an exciting new 'meal assembly' concept whereby time-poor Londoners can order a meal online (with menus created by a Michelin-starred chef), then pop in to the Parsons Green kitchen, where the ingredients for said meal are all ready to be put together and taken home by you to enjoy. What's more, bespoke private bookings are available for up to 16, with a Champagne reception and team cooking, followed by a food and wine matching experience.

Park Terrace Offers at Mandarin Oriental - What's New: London Venues Park Terrace Offers at Mandarin Oriental

The Mandarin Oriental's delightful new outdoor dining space, The Park Terrace, has opened and to celebrate, the hotel is offering complimentary room hire when you book a private reception on the Terrace, for a minimum of 150 guests. Other excellent deals include a complimentary upgrade from a sparkling wine reception to a Champagne reception at lunch or dinner, and a special offer on canapés, which are reduced to £12 per person (normal price £16). The various offers are valid until the end of December, as long as you book before the end of August.

Private Shopping at Hamleys - What's New: London Venues Private Shopping at Hamleys

At last - a way to shop at Hamleys without getting surrounded by over-excited children. We love the sound of the after-hours parties for corporate groups, which include private shopping (with a discount) throughout the store, canapés and Champagne. DJs and live entertainment can be laid on and don't forget Hamleys host childrens' parties too, including a sleepover (we're jealous!)

World's Hottest Curry at Cinnamon Club - What's New: London Venues World's Hottest Curry at Cinnamon Club

Things are hotting up at the Cinnamon Club, where chef Vivek Singh has created the world's hottest curry (allegedly). It's already been submitted to the Guiness World Records and diners have to sign a disclaimer before eating it, stating they understand the nature and risks involved with eating such a dish. What makes it so darn spicy? It's the Naga pepper and its seeds, which is 100 times hotter than your common or garden jalapeno pepper. Private diners, proceed with caution!

New s&m in Leadenhall Market - What's New: London Venues New s&m in Leadenhall Market

Not a lot of people know this but you can hire s&m cafes for private events, the latest being this week's new opening in Leadenhall Market (tel: 020 7626 6646). The 200-capacity space is their largest yet, with 3100 sq ft spread out over three floors. And if you fancy bangers and mash on the river, check out s&m ahoy! - a catering service aboard Thames Clippers from Tate Britain to Woolwich.

Devonshire Terrace Opens in City - What's New: London Venues Devonshire Terrace Opens in City

You're spoilt for choice with no less than four private dining rooms at newly opened restaurant/bar Devonshire Terrace (tel: 020 7256 3233). Even better, each has its own balcony and sliding doors, so you can be part of the adjacent restaurant or completely sealed off. A great new option for private diners in the City...

First UK Venture for L'Atelier Des Chefs - What's New: London Venues First UK Venture for L'Atelier Des Chefs

Forget everything you thought you knew about teambuilding cookery classes: L’atelier des Chefs (tel: 020 7499 6580) is reinventing the wheel in their swanky Wigmore Street kitchens. We particularly like the ‘cook, eat and run’ concept, where you can pop down at lunchtime and cook a tasty meal in just 30 minutes: best of all, it's 2-for-1 until 31 August, a saving of £9 each. Elsewhere, up to 150 can be accommodated for a teambuilding session and classes can last from half an hour to four hours.

Clear Your Desk to St James' Park - What's New: London Venues Clear Your Desk to St James' Park

You don't need an excuse to hold an outdoor meeting this week if you're anywhere near St James' Park on Thursday and Friday. Tell your boss that all that greenery and nature is very inspiring and make use of Visit London's Outdoor Office. Overlooking the lake, just off Birdcage Walk, the office will house a reception area, boardroom, 'creative' room, work desk area and a water cooler. Areas and desks can be reserved (via the Visit London website) for up to two hours between 9.30am and 6pm.

Former Midland Bank Gets Six Star Russian Makeover - What's New: London Venues Former Midland Bank Gets Six Star Russian Makeover

Grade I-listed former Midland Bank headquarters at 27-35 Poultry is all set to be transformed into London's first six star hotel (surprise surprise, the owner is a Russian oligarch). Private members' clubs, a roof garden and 184 bedrooms are thought to be in the offing. Rumours also abound that the Cafe Royal is set to receive the six star hotel treatment over the next couple of years(don't forget to book those Christmas parties there while you still can).

Delayed Openings for Saatchi and 108 - What's New: London Venues Delayed Openings for Saatchi and 108

Quick newsflash if you're planning events for later this year: both the new Saatchi Gallery (tel: 020 8968 9331) in Chelsea and The 108 (tel: 020 8305 3091) at the O2 in Greenwich have delayed their respective openings until October. Both were due to launch this month but builders being builders...

Up on the Roof at Coin Street - What's New: London Venues Up on the Roof at Coin Street

We're delighted that so many venues are opening up their roofs this summer, one of the latest being the RIBA award-winning Coin Street Neighbourhood Centre, with fabulous views of the OXO Tower one way, and the National Theatre and London Eye the other. Inside, all meeting rooms have floor-to-ceiling windows, and there's a strong emphasis on environmentally friendly materials throughout the building.

Crystal Palace Comes to Hyde Park - What's New: London Venues Crystal Palace Comes to Hyde Park

You only have a few dates left to hold a party at The Crystal Palace, a soaring temporary glass conservatory on the banks of the Serpentine, amidst the grand surrounds of Hyde Park (London Fashion Week is already booked in for some of their shows). Dates are available between 10-21 September in the 500-capacity venue. The Royal Parks Foundation has appointed The Rouge Partnership to operate the venue on the charity’s behalf, with proceeds going to support the Foundation’s conservation work.

Wellcome Collection Celebrates First Anniversary - What's New: London Venues Wellcome Collection Celebrates First Anniversary

The wonderful Wellcome Collection celebrates its first anniversary this month. Combining three contemporary galleries together with the Wellcome Library, public events forum, café, bookshop and of course the Wellcome Collection Conference Centre, look out for new exhibition 'Skeletons: London's buried bones' from next month, drawn from the Museum of London's astonishing collection of 17,000 skeletons spanning 16 centuries!

Down on the Beach at 54 Mile End - What's New: London Venues Down on the Beach at 54 Mile End

The sun is back so we're all heading for the Urban Beach at hip new club 54 Mile End. Imported Caribbean sand, decking and an 'Ibizan-influenced garden' make for a delightful outside urban space for BBQs. Going inside, choose between a boutique bar and restaurant, edgy basement club or top floor VIP area, all of which are available individually for private hire from Monday through Thursday (weekends are usually filled by a club promoter but check for details).

The Edge of Love at Café de Paris - What's New: London Venues The Edge of Love at Café de Paris

Dylan Thomas biopic 'The Edge of Love' premieres in Edinburgh this week, starring Keira Knightley and Sienna Miller. Major scenes were filmed at Café de Paris, so look out for the magnificent 500-capacity Ballroom in the film, transported back to 1940s London.

Music Day at Café Des Amis - What's New: London Venues Music Day at Café Des Amis

This Saturday, Fête de la Musique (Music Day) festivities will be taking place at Covent Garden favourite Café des Amis, where from 7pm, a French male soprano and pianist will be performing a repertory of famous opera and popular tunes. Check out the 70-seater Renaissance Room and the basement wine bar: perfectly placed for pre- or post-ROH performances.

More Private Dining at Maze Grill - What's New: London Venues More Private Dining at Maze Grill

The Butcher's Block, chef's table at Jason Atherton's mouthwatering Maze Grill (tel: 020 7495 2211), has three new neighbours in the form of private dining rooms. Opening this month, The Dalby Room (20 standing, 10 seated), The Somerton Room (75 standing, 40 seated) and The Hampton Room (75 standing, 40 seated) have been designed by the team behind Nobu and The Metropolitan, so stylish results are expected.

Lincoln Centre Adds Three New Rooms - What's New: London Venues Lincoln Centre Adds Three New Rooms

Holborn-based The Lincoln Centre has gained another floor with three new meeting rooms. Each is named after a famous artist: Hogarth seating 16, Turner Suite seating 24 and Blake seating six, overlooking Lincoln's Inn Fields and serving as an attractive private dining room.

Make Way for Megaro - What's New: London Venues Make Way for Megaro

St Pancras has a new four-star hotel, purpose-built and holding meetings for up to 60. The Megaro Hotel also boasts a rather delicious restaurant, delivering fresh foie gras daily from Paris, with executive chef, Paul Ribbands (formerly of The Lanesborough) at the helm.

New Notting Hill Venue Opens for Business - What's New: London Venues New Notting Hill Venue Opens for Business

Five minutes from Royal Oak or Bayswater tube is new meetings venue The Commander. Three individual rooms, along with a bar, restaurant and gardens, make attractive meeting spaces for 110 in the blank canvas Gallery; 20 in The Hereford boardroom; or there's The Library which serves as a small office.