Here’s the thing about F1 season: you never really know where to go to, given the plethora of options around you. (Minus some cancelled event, of course.)
The same thing applies to the nightlife: everyone and their mother is throwing some F1-related party that seems to be da bomb.com, but you have one goal in mind: free-flow booze, good music, rub shoulders with insiders and glamazons. Maybe, oh maybe, catch a glimpse of F1 royalty at the same time.
Check, check, check and check? Johnnie Walker’s annual Circuit Lounge was all that and more. Daniel Ngoo, whom you may remember as the 2010 winner of Audi Star Creation and who now plies his trade as chief gown designer at Le Grand, presented a stunning fashion collection inspired by the Johnnie Walker Gold Label Reserve. Given his penchant for the luxe, the collection definitely hit all the right notes.
The party was held at the Marina Bay Sands for the first time, which we initially had worries about. I mean, it is a big venue. What if there is some awkward space that no one can fill up? Turns out, numbers were not a problem for this hotly-anticipated party: over 1,500 guests turned up in droves, including famous faces such as Anita Kapoor, Daniel Boey, Sheila Sim and Rozz from 987FM. The fact that there were a lot of tables and seating space around the hall meant that each guest had their own space — yay, no need for table reservations!
It also meant there was A LOT of table-hopping around: we spotted designer Yuki Lange, editors of Wardrobe Trends Fashion Herbert Sim and Vanessa Emily Q, as well as blogger/designer Dawn Yang as we hopped around with a glass of Johnnie Walker in our hands. Unfortunately, we also spotted a bunch of ah bengs (our editor tells us that they are familiar faces from her polytechnic’s business school) that looked out of place, not really knowing what to do at events like this. Oh, poor you. Maybe Dream might welcome your gold highlights?
Circuit Lounge’s famous Flavour Lab also made a comeback, because we love nothing more than seeing alcohol used in wacky culinary creations. We tried our hands on Gold Berry Rock, a raspberry cocktail solidified in liquid nitrogen; Johnnie’s Toddy, a classic warm cocktail simmered at 60 degrees Celsius and torched before serving; and Honeybee, an edible concoction created with ice molds. Needless to say, we shamelessly went back for more. Trufax.
The cocktails were crafted and served by Diageo Reserve World Class alumni bartenders, Jeremy Chua (Singapore), Kae Yin (Taiwan) and Zachary de Git (Singapore). Last year’s Diageo Reserve World Class Bartender of the Year Tim Philips treated a select crowd to his world-famous cocktails at the exclusive VVIP lounge. VVIPs were mailed invites containing a bottle of Gold Label Reserve and a really flashy entry card which adds really well to one’s collection of VIP swag and ticket stubs. The card is gold, goddamnit.
Plenty of entertainment was in store as well: sets from The Mad Violinist, POSSO and Mel Debarge lent a wicked vibe to the night’s proceedings. Trust us, the music was hella good. But the real treat was seeing former F1 World Drivers’ champion Mika Hakkinen in the flesh. And because Johnnie Walker is pretty much considerate in that entire getting-home-from-the-club situation, guests who made their pledge to never drink and drive using the hashtag #imnotdriving received free rides home in SMRT Chryslers at the end of the evening.
One lucky partygoer, Sophia Ho, also won the chance of being driven home by Mika Hakkinen himself as part of Johnnie Walker’s Ultimate Chauffeur Service.
Now, that is one heck of a classy party.
Photos: Johnnie Walker Singapore (See more on our Facebook page, here.)