An English garden, ice sculptured iconic Westminster, oysters and Champagne, traditional fish and chips, and an array of musical talent were all on board as the Thames’ most unique attraction showed off her renewed prestige last week.
The distinguished Tattershall Castle, an 83-year-old floating pub first arriving into London in 1975, was re-berthed opposite the London Eye in April. Now, complete with nautical heritage, James Bond sophisticate, and event space, it has become the epitome of all that could be expected of an iconic British venue.
Guests walked the gangplank onto the restored paddle steamer to be greeted on deck with champagne to the sound of singer harpist before taking in the diversity from traditional to ceremonial. On deck, Dan Olsen debuted his single ‘Candy Shop’ in front of 300 guests, before award-winning duo ‘Foreign Locals’ entertained for the night.
The subtly nautical premier Bridge theatrically presented Champagne from sabered bottles and exquisite oysters showing off the best views from the Thames upstream to Westminster.
The main Wardroom with breath-taking panoramic views of the Thames through its vast enlarged windows, classically presented the most traditional of British cuisine and real ales whilst the lower deck Lounge with whisky tasting, cheese tower and chilli flavoured dark chocolate demonstrated the boat’s more refined offer.
The Stateroom, under a star lit ceiling, with lit dance floor and plumes of white illuminated ostrich feathers showed off its versatility as a Rat Pack singer and four piece band commanded the room before the enigmatic Kevin Fitzsimons took to the stage in the same room that has also hosted the Boat Show Comedy Club since 2000.
“We’re open to the public, available for hire, licensed for weddings, and host ticket-only events including New Year’s Eve, a phenomenal evening with arguably the best position for the fireworks in the whole of London,” said manager Stephen McMahon.
“It has taken a huge amount of planning to get this far and offer so much, but this is an iconic boat in a prestigious setting offering Londoners and tourists alike the ultimate experience.”
The move of the boat on Monday 10thApril, just 150 metres upstream, was one of the river Thames’s most intricate projects, involving an entire crew of marine experts.
The Tattershall Castle, originally in service on the Hull estuary, retired in 1973 and moved to London’s Embankment in 1975 where it was opened by the then Lord Mayor of London as thecapital’s first floating Art Gallery and Conference Centre. It reopened as a popular Londoner and tourist bar and restaurant destination in 1982 and was refurbished in 2014, being tugged all the way to Hull, its birthplace, and returning to site in 2015 following a million pound refit.
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