There’s something about the sound of gently lapping waves that helps everyone to relax so what better setting for your event than a venue on the water, to help your guests forget about the pressures of everyday life and instead be inspired and uplifted by a beautiful environment.
Summer in London can feel oppressive and we often have enquiries from our clients asking us to help find them a venue where they can escape. And when the weather is fine that there really is nothing as nice as messing about on the river! Here’s our round-up of some of our favourite water based venues.
West Reservoir Centre
OK, so Hackney might not be the first place you associate with water but bear with us on this one! This venue is actually one of the most unique spaces in London. Situated on the banks of a picturesque lake, Stoke Newington West Reservoir Centre is a stunning 1930s structure; originally built as a filter house on the side of the reservoir.
The venue is a four storey red brick tower with stunning structural design elements including the original water processing equipment in the ceiling. In the day it’s flooded by natural light and in the evening can be illuminated to provide drama to the setting. The wonderful views means that it is the perfect setting for meetings and parties and wedding receptions. There are two outdoor terraces overlooking the water to provide an incomparable experience in a one-of-a-kind venue. Suitable for up to 130 for a seated dinner or 150 for a standing reception.
If you want to surround yourself with water then only an island will do. Ravens Ait is the only island venue in London and it’s a really magical location. You need to travel to west London for it but the trains from Waterloo will deliver you there in just twenty minutes so it’s actually really quick and easy to get to.
Once you arrive your own boat man will ferry you across to the island where you can enjoy the well-tended gardens and the venue’s riverside verandas that look out across Hampton Palace grounds. Let the quiet life take over as this is a really mellow venue with just a few swans for company and the odd boat drifting past.
The venue itself is incredibly flexible with a variety of rooms, suites and a large marquee that means it can be configured into a variety of set-ups suitable for business meetings, conferences, functions and it is of course perfect for a company away day with a large lawn that is ideal for team activities, with break out areas inside. In the evening the barbeque can be stoked up, as you let all your worries drift downstream.
No Man’s Fort
If it’s something really unusual you are looking for and want to be surrounded by a lot of water then No Man’s Fort is the place for you. Set on an offshore 19th-century fort in the Solent strait, this eclectic event venue is accessed by boat from Portsmouth. It sits on the Solent, with views of the Isle of Wight in one direction, and Portsmouth Harbour in the other. Built between 1867 and 1880 at the request of Prime Minister Lord Palmerston, the fort was built in order to protect Portsmouth from an attack by Napoleon III. It has now undergone an extensive renovation and operates as a hotel and events space.
No Man’s Fort is perfect for treating your team with an away day where you can make use of a range of facilities featuring including two helipads, a nightclub, laser quest, games and snooker rooms, water sports, a gallery restaurant, wine bar and spa facilities. Guests can also sign up to water sports (including RIB rides, yachting and jet skiing), as well as line fishing.
And if you’re exhausted after all that activity you can sit back and enjoy the views from the roof either sitting in the deck chairs or soaking in the hot tubs, before enjoying a dinner which could include your own catch of the day being cooked on the BBQ.
You can hire the venue for just 20 people for a dinner in the Crow’s Nest or hold a conference for 200 in the Fort. The venue is also available for exclusive hire with 22 luxury rooms available with further accommodation available, just a short boat trip away.
Battlebridge Room (part of Kings Place)
Back to the heart of London, one our of favourite venues is Battlebridge Room which is part of Kings Place just moments away from Kings Cross. This area has gone through a massive regeneration in recent years and has become a really inspiring place to be. The venue is within the idyllic setting of the canals where the venue has its own private terrace for waterside venues, providing a lovely backdrop for any summer party.
Whether you are planning a stand-alone event or looking to add a reception onto your conference, the Battlebridge Room is available for exclusive hire and provides charming views of the canals and its houseboats. It can be used for conferences, dinners and smaller events for up to 400 guests and the event team is award winning, so you know you’ll be looked after.
Ballynahinch Castle Hotel in Connemara, West Ireland
Finally, if you looking to get away from it all for a weekend we recommend Ballynahinch Castle Hotel in Connemara, West Ireland; we were lucky enough to stay there a few years ago and the setting is stunning, in a private 450 acre estate of woodland, rivers and walks. If you’re hiring the venue exclusively you get to treat it as your own private house party (though it does resemble more of a castle than a house). You may never want to leave the grounds with fly fishing, tennis, biking and clay shooting some of the activities available and a championship golf course within easy reach. You can hire the hotel’s 48 bedrooms for two nights.
Here at Evolve Events we work with some of the most prestigious and unusual venues available. We offer a free venue finding service.
If you’d like our help finding the perfect venue for your event just get in touch with the team (email: firstname.lastname@example.org).