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Here’s to the celebrations, shindigs and soirées!

11 April 2019
a couple chat over dinner in the Strathearn
Karen McVeigh, Event Manager

"Gleneagles is a beautiful venue for any celebration," says Event Manager, Karen McVeigh, who’s been organising private events at the Glen for the past seven years.

“In terms of our location, our range of beautiful event spaces, and the variety of elements we can add, there are few places in the world that can put on an event like Gleneagles.”

Each event is assigned a dedicated Event Manager, who becomes the guests’ main contact – working with their ideas, themes and budget to create something special.

“We start by having a discussion about the experience you want to create – whether that’s a simple candlelit anniversary dinner for six in our Broadcasting Room or a glamorous themed birthday party for 180 in the Ballroom with a swing band and fireworks – and then we start drawing out your interests and pulling everything together to bring that vision to life,” says Karen.

the broadcasting room at Gleneagles set out for a candlelit dinner

“We work with the different teams across the hotel and all our experts can really help to enhance your celebration. There are no standard ‘event packages’, because everything we do – from the activities, the flowers and the colour scheme to the music, the drink and the food – is tailored to the guest.

“A couple of years ago, we had an amazing event that reunited two sides of a family, from Russia and Scotland. My job was to blend those cultures, so we had vodka and whisky, Cossack dancers and Highland dancers, traditional Russian folk music and Scottish bagpipes, and Russian caviar and Whisky.

Two barmen serve drinks in the bar of the drawing room at Gleneagles

“We’ve had proposals where the ring has been hidden in the cocktail; where it’s been brought down from the sky by a falcon; or where the couple has been driven up a mountain for a scenic safari and we’ve arranged for a piper to step out of the mist and start playing at the moment she’s said ‘yes’.

“For birthdays we’ve arranged for a flash mob to burst into song in the Century Bar; we’ve taken ponies out to the lawn at a children’s party; and we even arranged for a vintage car that was tied in a giant bow to be driven down the drive as a surprise present. So, whatever your ideas, we’ll always try to find a way to make them happen.”

Karen’s favourite part of the job? “That’s easy,” she says. “The highlight is seeing the smile on our guests’ faces. Sometimes we’ve been planning an event for weeks or months, so it’s wonderful to watch everything come together perfectly on the day with the knowledge you’ve helped to create those special memories.”

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