Under the night sky at Les Invalides!
I first learned of Diner en Blanc about five years ago. It sounded fascinating to me. Secret location, white clothes only, bring your own food, wine, champagne, dinner plates, glasses, the list goes on. What a concept. I immediately tried to sign up for the invitation only event. Looking within driving distance for me, I attempted to score a ticket in New York, Boston or Philadelphia. There are different reservation phases; invitation, sponsored and finally wait listed. I only got waitlisted for Philadelphia and eventually had my hopes dashed. I moved on as it wasn’t in the cards for me at that time.
A chance meeting, and an unexpected turn of events landed me with an invite to the 30th Anniversary of Diner en Blanc Paris! I swiftly checked my calendar and erased anything that would prohibit me from attending.
Items Needed: Table, chairs (size specific), tablecloth (white),dinnerware, glasses, centerpiece, flatware, lights, and a desire to dress and impress. This all might sound a little tricky. It’s one thing to attend a dinner party locally but an all out adventure to fly 3,635 miles for a picnic! This is why we all have a bucket list.
The day of the event you are busy preparing and packaging your picnic dinner. Anything you can pack in your cooler and assemble ahead of time works. Salads, cheese, charcuterie, salmon, caviar and bien sur baguette!
Here’s how it worked; we received an e-mail message to line up at the corner of Boulevard de Invalides and Rue Grenelle. That was our departure point. We still didn’t know our secret destination. We set off with coolers, bags, and chairs all loaded onto trolley’s. There was somewhat of a waiting game as this involves moving thousands of people. Once we started walking, the excitement grew, we were headed for Les Invalides Monument park. The reward was magnificent views, the incredible passion and energy exuding from the people around you, all 20,000 of them.
Thoughts: There was a lot of planning involved for this event. We waited at our departure point for almost two hours, not knowing the secret location and how we would get there. Everything started much later than I had anticipated. Patience is necessary along with various snacks and a screw top bottle of wine! The pay off was this visually stunning Diner en Blanc in Paris. Would I do it again? In a heartbeat!