Lexus Marquee – A Flutter In The Birdcage
Yesterday saw me tick something off my bucket list I thought I would have never be able to tick off. Go to the Spring Racing Carnival in a marquee, in the famous Birdcage! I have to thanks the amazing Julia from Tink PR for such an amazing opportunity, and Lexus Australia for hosting us.
I’ve never been to the races before, and figured I would never really go. So when the invite came through to attend first class, I was bouncing off the walls with glee!
We were attending Emirate’s Stakes Day, which is the last day of racing at Flemington Race Course. The weather on this particular day was the worst of all the race days this year. Luckily the rain cleared when we got there, but it was super windy! Which left us girls trying to keep our dresses down, and fascinators on! Luckily my fascinator was firmly in place, but my dress was wispy and left me constantly feeling like Marilyn Monroe!
The marquee was based on the famous Japanese painting “The Great Wave of Kanagawa“, which the team at Hecker Guthrie turned into mosaic. Upon entrance we were greeted by a giant curved wall covered in The Great Wave print (which my work was involved in, including me; wee!!) and the shiny new Lexus IS 350F Sport in all it’s glory. We were also given racing books to help us place our bets throughout the day. We headed on through and found a spot to enjoy breakfast; a coffee or champagne, very moreish bacon and egg rolls, as well as nutella doughnuts.
The Sky Deck (top level) of the Lexus Marquee was a roof top garden designed by Jamie Durie. Whilst the weather wasn’t optimal for sitting out there all day, we did enjoy a few moments up there, before getting too cold and having to return to the comfort of four walls on level 2! The table showcases his new BrickWood collection.
Along with a few of my favourite food bloggers, I-Hua & The Boy, Thanh, and Daisy; we joined Julia at The Big Group one night to sample ALL the food at they, Simon Denton’s Hihou, and Neil Perry’s would be serving at the marquee. We had a great time drinking G.H.Mumm, Hihou’s Yuzu Sparkler mocktails and nibbling away.
Simon talked us through all the Hihou dishes, and we were told there would be a Hihou pop up restaurant of level 2 of the 3 tier marquee. The marquee is a flat pack, and they take down and put up every year. Extremely impressive when you see it!
Neil’s food was equally as good, with his signature burgers going down a treat. The Big Group’s kitchen was a very impressive set up. They do catering for high class events like Louis Vuitton, The Grand Prix, private parties all around the world and of course, Spring Racing Carnival. The dishes and the quality of food was just faultless. And their waitstaff were not only nicely presented and kind, but also bags of fun! We had one waiter from our tasting night also work on the day we went, and he remembered us! He was definitely our favourite!
There was a great range of desserts, including Neil Perry’s Rosetta tiramisu, tequila and lime marshmallows, toffee and coconut crème brûlée on a macadamia sable, and our absolute favourite; peanut butter Eskimo Pie with salted caramel & praline. We were absolutely devastated as the Eskimo Pies never made it up to level 2!
We were very grateful for the transfers to and from the track from the Grand Hyatt in a Lexus, and really enjoyed letting down our hair after the main race with a boogie on the dance floor!
Thank you Julia one again. I really cannot thank you enough, and if I keep saying thank you I think you might impose a restraining order on me 😛 Seriously though, thank you to Julia and Lexus for making my dreams come true, one of the best days I’ve had in a LONG time, and I was so happy to be able to share it with some of my friends!
Tips to surviving a marquee in the Birdcage
- Ladies – If you are like me and aren’t great with wearing heels, pack a sneaky pair of flat shoes in your bag to change into during the day. This saved my life!
- Drink quality champagne, that way you don’t wake up feeling seedy the next morning! May I highly recommend G.H.Mumm!
- Get there early, have a walk around and make the most of your day.
- Stick around after the main race, as the party really starts. Get on down to the dance floor and let your hair down!
- Have a bet. Even it’s just a few dollars, it will make it all the more fun.
- Live in the moment and enjoy every, single, minute of it!