La Rose Noire 20th Anniversary

About 200 guests of renowned Hong Kong-based patisserie La Rose Noire gathered at Pier 9 in Central for a 90-minute boat ride to an undisclosed location. It wasn’t long before the penny dropped that the group was headed to Hong Kong Disneyland (HKDL), as Captain Jack Sparrow and a pair of pirate crewmembers commandeered the boat in pursuit of his vessel the Black Pearl.

The magic began onboard with the trio conducting a singalong of tunes from the film Pirates of the Caribbean.

Docking at the theme park’s private pier, the group was welcomed by a live ragtime music band and were served cocktails at the gazebo before being escorted to the convention centre foyer.

“The anniversary celebration was one of our most important company events this year,” said company founder and president Gérard Dubois. “Understandably, I wanted it to be a special memory for all the guests, and needless to say, I had very high expectations for each detail.”

Organising an event whose guest list included some of Hong Kong’s top chefs was not an easy task, as a few of these cooking masters prepared their signature dishes as part of the evening’s international menu, and thus, had to work with their in-house counterparts at the theme park to create a culinary banquet.

The staging and entertainment also contributed hugely to the evening’s magic: dinner was served in the Cinderella Ballroom, whose European interiors helped create an ambience like a royal court as masquerade dancers, harlequin-clad stilt walkers and jugglers performed the pre-dinner show.

As host for the evening, Dubois went on stage to welcome the crowd of well-wishers, while the company’s logo was projected via a globo light onto the golden drapes behind him. Afterwards, music filled the ballroom and the doors opened dramatically to reveal a procession of 20 master chefs heralding the start of the dinner service. Each chef took his place behind the food stall that featured his dish. A singer backed by an orchestra serenaded the diners with jazz hits while they tucked into a feast fit for a king.

As the dinner drew to a close, the lights in the ballroom were dimmed and four masked male dancers entered to perform a dance sequence from Romeo and Juliet. The entire dance was performed in silhouette with the dancers courting “Juliet”, who ended the dance by dropping her own mask and presenting a black rose to her chosen suitor.

A shower of confetti air cannons coupled with a flash of blinding light revealed the appearance of a black medallion on stage featuring the title of a new cookbook, Crafted Passion, written by La Rose Noire’s Gerard Dubois. But gasps of surprise spread all around the dance floor as the triumphant “suitor” lowered his mask and revealed himself – no other than the new book’s author himself.

Dubois invited guests to “enter our world of passion” as 12 masquerade dancers appeared and beckoned everyone to follow them outside. Another procession ensued towards the Sleeping Beauty Ballroom.

“The World of Passion” turned out to be a room full of dessert tables. Copies of the book were everywhere and a looped DVD presentation was running, giving diners a behind-the-scenes look into the creation of fine desserts.

Guests were allowed to move freely between the two ballrooms. The arrival of stilt walkers in the foyer signalled an end to the evening celebrations. Each guest went home with a copy of the book and a box of chocolates as souvenirs, while Dubois pronounced himself a very satisfied man.

“Hong Kong Disneyland delivered a seamless service in every aspect. All our guests enjoyed the high standard of food and entertainment,” he enthused. “There are few venues in Hong Kong as magical as the Cinderella Ballroom.”

Fast Facts

EVENT: La Rose Noire 20th anniversary

VENUE: Hong Kong Disneyland

DATE: May 13, 2011


ORGANISERS: La Rose Noire and HKDL


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