My Best Meeting Moment, by Mirela Bejan, Director of Event Management, JW Marriott Bucharest Grand Hotel

Combine Modern Touches and a Traditional Theme

Goal: Create a Viennese-Style Ball in Bucharest

Every year, between November and March, Vienna and other European cities recreate the splendor and extravagance of the traditional ball season. At the JW Marriott Bucharest Grand Hotel, we keep this tradition alive by organizing our own Viennese ball.

In attendance are business leaders, members of the business community (from Austria, Romania and other countries), celebrities, high-ranking officials — and any other guests who simply love fine-dining experiences and quality entertainment.

We only added a discreet touch in reinterpreting the dishes — just enough to surprise the guest with every plate presented.

 

Tradition With a Twist

Though key elements of the event remain the same from year to year (it is a traditional Viennese ball, after all), we bring something new and fresh to the guests each time. This year, we embraced both classical and contemporary dance. The ball’s 40 pairs of debutantes were dressed by Romanian fashion designer Lena Criveanu, which added lots of charm and elegance to the night.

For the 10th edition of Vienna Ball by JW Marriott, we went back to the fundamental meaning of this ball: celebrating Austrian tradition. So that’s how we crafted the menu; all of the fine dishes were inspired by Austrian culinary milestones, and the key ingredients were brought from the Land der Berge and Land am Strome — like serviettenknödel (dumplings), goose liver, root vegetables, pumpkin and wild mushrooms.

We only added a discreet touch in reinterpreting the dishes — just enough to surprise the guest with every plate presented.

 

Overcoming Challenges to Deliver a Unique Event

One of the biggest challenges was transforming the huge marble hall of the Parliament Place into a fairy-tale venue. Another challenge was timeliness: Following the gala, we hosted a dinner with a four-course menu, and we had a tight entertainment scenario with very timed, precise moments.

We also had to coordinate two separate bands: We alternated between classical music performed by an Austrian orchestra and dance music performed by a local band.

I also revel in the harmonious orchestration of the event’s elements…

 

Moments to Remember

As always, my favorite moment was the “Alles Walzer moment,” when the master of ceremonies invites guests to dance; it is full of emotion and joy.

I also revel in the harmonious orchestration of the event’s elements: menu and drink service, live music, kids ballet, défilé of the debutantes, Alles Waltzer moment, and finally, announcing the date of the next event.

The lighting of the hall, the furniture and the floral decorations all worked together to enhance the event atmosphere, and the gala dinner menu — featuring interpretations of Austrian favorites — also made this event truly spectacular and unforgettable.