Blog. Back to the Floor, One Month To Go

March 5, 2024 | Author: Giuliana Vittiglio

Due to popular demand, we are thrilled to announce that a limited number of places are now on sale to the legendary Back to the Floor! Taking place one month today, on Friday 5th April at the Park Plaza Westminster Bridge London, the evening will see senior figures from the industry test their silver service skills in recognition of the hard work their tremendous teams carry out each day.

We recently caught up with ‘Back to the Floor’ co-founder Danny Pecorelli and host James Clarke for the inside scoop on this unmissable evening.

Danny Pecorelli, Managing Director, Exclusive Collection

How did you come up with the concept of Back to the Floor?

It was at Summer Lodge at a Hotelier of the Year Lunch. John Stauss (Four Seasons Park Lane) Philip Newman-Hall (Le Manoir aux Quat’Saison) and I were talking about how we could create a unique event to raise money for Hospitality Action (it should also be said there was some wine involved). There were a lot of high-profile chef events at the time and we wanted to 

do something different so came up with the concept of all the hoteliers and people involved in the industry going back to the floor, raising lots of money, and having lots of fun in the process.

What’s been your biggest highlight over the series of events so far?

I think it's just the amazing camaraderie of the event and so many mental images of people like Jeremy Goring throwing plates across a crowded room to dinner guests, the spontaneous enormous conga that must have been over 300 guests and having to politely apologise as I spilled peas over a guest’s lap, but it all being in the spirit of a truly unique event.

How do you envision Back to the Floor evolving?

We are bringing through the next generation which is why James Clarke has come on board and every two years we bring on new hoteliers so it is evolving organically without losing the essence of what it is as an event.

James B. Clarke, General Manager, Park Plaza Westminster Bridge London:

Why is Back to the Floor needed?

Back to the Floor is a joyous celebration with a serious core. This January was the busiest month in HA’s recorded history, in terms of Main Grant applications received, and 2024 looks set to follow this trend. The money raised at Back to the Floor will support people in serious need within our industry. Those who can’t afford the rent and are at risk of homelessness, those fleeing domestic violence, or those unable to pay for the funeral of a loved one will have somewhere to turn to thanks to our collective efforts. Thank you to everyone involved for making the night possible and helping to raise what will hopefully be another record-breaking sum.

What are you most looking forward to at this year’s event?

It is an honour to host Back to the Floor and follow in the footsteps of some of London’s most iconic hotels that have hosted in the past. I am excited to welcome my fellow waiters and sommeliers to Park Plaza Westminster Bridge London and work together as a team for the best Back to the Floor yet. The atmosphere at Back to the Floor is always electric and the showmanship of the front-of-house team has to be seen to be believed. With so many big personalities taking part I am looking forward to seeing what tricks everyone has up their sleeves as we all compete to raise the most tips! Speaking of which, if anyone would like to donate to my own personal TipJar account please click here!

The event would not be possible without our host Park Plaza Westminster Bridge London, and sponsors American ExpressCaterer.comExclusive CollectionFarncombe EstateHand Picked Hotels, and Umbrella Training, to whom we are indebted.

Calvern James, Director of Hospitality, said: “At we feel as if we aren’t just sponsoring a fundraising dinner, but that we’re investing in positive change and making a tangible difference to the lives of those in crisis. We’re standing in solidarity with all of the ‘Back to the Floor’ sponsors, suppliers, waiters, and sommeliers, to make a meaningful impact on those facing adversity in our industry. ‘Back to the Floor’s’ reputation precedes itself and is proud to be a part of it once more.”

Adele Oxberry, Chief Executive and Founder, Umbrella Training said: “Umbrella Training takes great pride in giving back to the industry we serve. By sponsoring ‘Back to the Floor’ we’re investing in the collective wellbeing of our sector, helping to build a brighter future for all. We’ve supported Hospitality Action for many years and ‘Back to the Floor’ is always among the highlights. Team Umbrella is very much looking forward to the event and can’t wait to see how the evening will unfold!”

Guests will be treated to a three-course meal, wine, Champagne Taittinger, and top-notch entertainment whilst having the chance to bid on some very select prizes as they network with a host of notable industry faces and raise funds for hospitality workers in crisis. To find out more and to book your places contact Sophie.