Life & Culture

Your once-in-a-lifetime simcha venue: Blueprint Cafe

With riverside views this sensational space has a lot to boast about. Read our beautiful venue guide right here...


The Blueprint Café, Shad Thames

The Blueprint Café may be hard to spot, but it is easy to find. The restaurant sits on the first floor of what was once the Design Museum (hence its name), accessed via a flight of stairs. Though the museum has flown the nest, the whitewashed Blueprint Café is still very much open for business for bar and batmitzvahs, engagement parties, or indeed wedding parties.

Getting there involves a lovely riverside walk along the Thames, passing the Scoop open-air theatre, glass skyscrapers such as the Shard and the Gherkin, and the magnificent Tower Bridge . The latter, incidentally, is a picturesque backdrop for engagement or wedding pictures but not exclusively so. Bar and batmitzvah photos will equally look fantastic on instagram.

For all event enquiries please contact our Events Team on 020 3196 4959 or email our Events Manager Ana Afonso

A new party space ideal for bar/batmizvah and engagement parties

The freshly renovated Blueprint Café is a newcomer to the simcha scene and, let's face it, there's a lot of kudos to be had in being the first to discover a venue never before seen on the bar/batmitzvah or engagement party circuit.

And there are many compelling reasons to take a look: you get a bright and airy 200 square metres of fresh and shiny party space. Plus its white walls and ceiling, mirrored columns and wood floors mean that it is ripe for personalisation. However you imagine romance to be, you can have it. Whichever way your child wants to theme their bar or batmizvah party, this space allows for creativity. If you need help, resident party planner Ana Afonso can help.

You can make it formal with a sit-down dinner for up to 120 guests, and space for a DJ and a dance floor. You can have a band, too, if you don't mind fewer guests.

Or you can go casual: the central tables and chairs can be removed to allow for 180 guests standing. There are fixed tan leather upholstered booths and blue cloth banquettes that hem two walls, so there is always some seating available for those who cannot stand for long. This means elderly aunties can listen to the barmitzvah speeches in comfort.

Perhaps the most compelling reason to party here is the view. Floor-to-ceiling windows that stretch the entire front wall facing the river mean you get to see the wonderful views from the city to Canary Wharf from every spot in the room – so there won't be any table envy.

Food-wise there is a wide menu created by an English chef with a taste for French and Italian cuisine, and this is reflected in the choices. There are veggie and fish options and kosher food can be brought in too. They work with 1701 Kitchen kosher caterers to come up with a menu to suit.

Sex in the City

Hen parties (say, six to 10) would work very well because there is something feminine about the décor and ambience. Get there for brunch, as the menu offers light dishes such as smoked salmon and scrambled eggs, beetroot and goat’s cheese salad, and smashed avocados on toast amongst other heartier options. Plus you can treat your hens to unlimited Prosecco (for an extra £15 a head) and enjoy a Sex in the City-style afternoon sharing stories that get more raunchy with each glass.

Tip: Ask for the table in the furthest corner by the window. As the sunlight falls on your hens from this angle, they will look bright-eyed and fresh-faced as they raise a glass of bubbly to toast you with the fantastic, highly Instagrammable river and Tower Bridge as a backdrop.

Alfresco evening

Heady late-summer afternoons or evenings can be spent on the quaint terrace. It would suit a casual anniversary or birthday bash for up 25 people.

Get creative with your corporate event

The room can be customised for business purposes too. Booths or a labyrinth can be set up for an exhibition or configured in whichever way works best for you. In the past, artists have set up easels here to paint a nude model and a massage training course took place here. They also hosted the drinks reception for the launch of the high profile Candy Crush Soda Saga game, the company behind it having sailed their liveried Livett's boat along the Thames beforehand.

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