WENTWORTH’S HALF CENTURY
IT’S been a platform for Prime Ministers’ victory speeches and a long-time base for world leaders, but last night Sofitel Sydney Wentworth put its own team on the stage as it celebrated its 50th anniversary.
Having opened in 1966 as Sydney’s first international hotel, the landmark property has amassed a guest list that includes Hollywood greats like Marlon Brando and Audrey Hepburn as well as world figures like the Queen, Princess Diana, George W. Bush and the Dalai Lama.
The hotel’s gm Craig Reaume recounted tales from the hotel’s past and paid tribute to long-standing staff including Frenchman Claude Stein who has been an institution in the Garden Court restaurant for more than 40 years.
“We’re very proud of this hotel’s unique history,” Reaume said.
“A significant part of our history is our people, who make this more than bricks and mortar,” he said.
Last night’s ballroom soiree included champagne from Veuve Clicquot and a performance by My Fair Lady singer Mark Vincent.
The menu was a showcase of culinary highlights from past decades, while a centrepiece birthday cake stood 1.3 metres tall beneath a 1.4 metre gold-gilded chandelier.
Pictured at the event are host Melissa Doyle with gm Craig Reaume, and, inset, the hotel’s director of MICE sales Julie van Kampen, AccorHotels director of sales for meetings and events Charlotte Gutte and the hotel’s conference and events manager Emma McLean.