We are sure that most event professionals love to discover blank canvas venues as these spaces offer us the opportunity to really use our creative flair, but for some clients hosting an event a blank canvas venue can often be a secondary option as the design possibilities are endless and this can cause anxiety. There are hundreds of venues that offer their own edge, from art galleries to palaces, and these spaces will always be a popular choice because they offer an interesting backdrop and angle for entertaining. There is something so wonderful when dining underneath an original Manet masterpiece at the Courtauld Art Gallery, or hosting an interactive team building activity at the Launchpad – Science Museum, which you cannot have if you hire a blank canvas. Saying this however, blank canvases have their own charm and advantages.
If you are working with an event planner then part of their process might be to find you the perfect location and suitable venue for your experience – it is something that we love to include for our clients. We work slightly back to front in that we create a purpose and creative design before seeking the ideal space, and we will inevitably consider multiple spaces that fit the various criteria for the experience. Blank canvas venues give us a real buzz as we are able to mould the space to suit our requirements, transforming the space into something new, whilst benefitting from the venue team’s expertise and internal facilities. We are often asked to find spaces that are purpose built event venues, warehouses, rooms within venues and remote locations that have no real clarification but are in beautiful places in the world. Today we are going to showcase five blank canvas venues in London, a city known for a blustering array of choice, creativity and opportunity for all types of events. We have hosted events in these venues, so we have firsthand experience at how amazing each space is.
Royal Horticultural Halls
The Royal Horticultural Halls offer both large capacities and lots of creative freedom. It is the ideal space to host drinks receptions, dinners, award ceremonies and large scale music gigs. We had the pleasure of hosting a truly wonderful showcase in December 2016 on behalf of War Child UK where we used the space for both the reception and dining element before guests were treated to an intimate concert. This venue can be found in Pimlico and is a short distance from Victoria. The interior is a blank canvas with character drawn in through the open glass ceiling and basement rooms.
LSO St Luke’s
Home to the London Symphony Orchestra, and a hidden gem in the City of London, LSO St. Luke’s is a concert hall first and foremost, but with plenty of opportunity to be used for parties, dinners and events that require a creative flair. It is full of nooks and crannies, has beautiful stained glass windows and has a full compliment of production/technical equipment already in situ for you to use. The outside areas can be used to, but keep in mind that this is a deconsecrated church and therefore residents are nearby and discretion is advised when entertaining guests alfresco.
Lightwells and Deadhouse, Somerset House
Perhaps considered one of London’s coolest venues to hire, but also one of the oldest. Lightwells and Deadhouse at Somerset House remind us of Diagon Alley from Harry Potter, and have actually be used as a venue for many hit films. Situated two stories below the famous dancing fountains in Somerset Houses’s courtyard, guests enter the Lightwells via hidden staircases as they go deep into history. A series of external corridors await, with an internal space that has a raw quality to it that is hard to find anywhere else in London, that snakes its way across the middle area of the Courtyard. The Lightwells and Deadhouse are full of character but are blank canvas, offering lots of great choice for creative events and for those looking for something edgy and different.
Victoria House Basement
We had the pleasure of producing a rather exciting event in the basement at Victoria House, Bloomsbury in 2016 and we cannot wait to get back. This venue boasts white space that feels like it rolls along for miles and miles. It is perfect for multi-faceted events that require lots of breakup spaces, and for experiences where lots of production build is required. The ceilings are low, which creates intimacy, and then open up in the main space where you might host a dinner or large capacity event. Furthermore, you can choose to occupy the Bloomsbury Ballroom too, which is a venue full of Artdeco design and whimsical identity.
Embankment Galleries, Victoria Embankment
Known as the major exhibition venues fro Somerset House’s world class series of shows, the Embankment Galleries lie in the very middle of the Victoria Embankment, two levels below the main entertaining areas of the building. This venue has exclusive access on some dates throughout the year, which tend to be gobbled up like hot cakes, but if you are lucky enough to grab a date you can entertain your guests here in a venue that is both beautiful and elegant, whilst remaining perfect for exhibitions, product launches and cocktail parties. The vaulted ceilings are a dream to dress with light, and the long mezzanine that connects the two spaces (Embankment East and Embankment West) has the wow factor that is guaranteed to make you hooked on this venue as a potential blank canvas space.
We offer a complimentary venue finding service for our clients and take pride in our relationships with unique spaces in the UK and internationally. If you would like to discuss your events requirements then we would love to hear from you and to send you some further information about our services and the ways in which we might help.
To email us firstname.lastname@example.org or call 0208 014 3015.