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SPECIAL REPORT – Masterpiece London 2013

Masterpiece London 2013, Royal Chelsea Hospital

With so much to do in London, for an event to become a fixture on the ‘Summer Season’  it usually needs to have been running for quite some time. Now in only its third year, the Masterpiece London exhibition seems to have turned this trend on its head and has become very much a part of the calender for the smart set. It has already built a reputation as one of the most interesting and successful international events cutting across several disciplines – from art to antiques, all the way to design.

Claire's Pick - Faberge Egg
Claire’s Pick – Faberge Egg

Design Restaurants are delighted to have supported the event since its inception three years ago and are so pleased that it has also become such a favourite for so many of our members!

This year we were also celebrating a birthday in the team so it was with additional purchase vigour we entered the show as there were presents to procure!

We challenged each other to find a ‘favourite piece’ – money no object. Now money is a funny subject at an event like Masterpiece. The displays of wealth are ultimately staggering and yet money is never mentioned, or if it is then the whispers are a cliche of  ‘If you have to ask – you can’t afford’…

The thing is, you DO have to ask as nothing has a price tag on it and yet pretty much everything is for sale!

Andrea's Pick - Cartier Jade Watch Pendant
Andrea’s Pick – Cartier Jade Watch Pendant

We wandered the hushed, thickly carpeted halls and it became clear that both Claire and Andrea were drawn to pretty sparkly things…

…while Tessa – well Tessa is drawn to things that go fast!

Tessa's Pick One - Jaguar Eagle E-type
Tessa’s Pick One – Jaguar Eagle E-type

Unable to decide between a £650,000 Jaguar Eagle E-Type, or

Ventura UK‘s incredible Riva Tritone historial super yacht (not sure the price will fit in this gap) we decided to let her have both…Any guesses as to whose birthday it was?

Tessa's Pick Two - Riva Tritone by Ventura UK
Tessa’s Pick Two – Riva Tritone by Ventura UK

2013-06-27 14.35.47With purchases made (at least in our heads) we engaged with the lunch crowd and headed to the La Caprice pop up restaurant at the centre of the show.

At this point I must commend the amazing head concierge, Gina, who managed the herculean task of deftly seating the well-heeled crowd all fuelled with the joy of finding their own kind of perfection amongst the exhibits. After toasting the birthday with blanc de blanc we settled into our menu. Claire had house favourite, Crispy Duck and Watermelon Salad with Spicy Cashew Nuts, “Heaven!”. Andrea also went for a Caprice classic with Chicken Milanese, “very nice but a  bit heavy on the lemon dressing which wasn’t pointed out on the menu”. Service was excellent and they changed her dish immediately for one without lemon. Tessa chose a Salad of Goats Cheese and Beetroot but was still rather distracted by her choices of transport (car or boat) and art  ‘anything by Joan Miro ‘ to give comment on food.  Presentation on all of the dishes was worthy to be shown at Masterpiece!

La Caprice, Crispy Duck and Watermelon Salad
La Caprice, Crispy Duck and Watermelon Salad
La Caprice, Chicken Milanese
La Caprice, Chicken Milanese
La Caprice, Beetroot and Goats Cheese Salad
La Caprice, Beetroot and Goats Cheese Salad
Vintage Jelly Beans
Vintage Jelly Beans

Not wanting to miss more exhibits we did not linger for pudding, but Claire did take full advantage of the complimentary bath of Jelly Beans offered at the antique snuff stand – visiting several times.

Twist Piano, by Based Upon
Twist Piano, by Based Upon

We eventually rested our feet with a well earned glass of Ruinart at Scotts whilst listening to the incredible music coming from the even more incredible ‘Twist Piano’ by designers ‘Based Upon’, shaped like some kind of huge bronze Oyster.

Credit cards stayed thankfully unbattered (although we had to prise an £800 book on Picasso Ceramics from Pottertons Bookshop from Tessa’s grasp on way out) – but there is always next year.

Masterpiece London Exhibition is open 28th June – 3rd July. Check here for opening times.

MEMBER OFFER TO MASTERPIECE LONDON – a complimentary glass of Ruinart Champagne with every ticket purchased.

Tickets cost £20 in advance for general admission. Your ticket will permit a complimentary glass of Ruinart Champagne at Scott’s Seafood & Champagne bar at the fair (£18).

This offer is available when purchasing tickets online at www.masterpiecefair.com by entering the promotional code DESR13. A voucher(s) will be sent to you with your ticket or alternatively call 020 7499 7470.

Not a member? Join here or for more information go to www.designrestaurants.com .


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