Wayne’s top tips for Vintage New Year’s Eve Spectacular

Got your New Year’s Eve plans sorted yet? How about seeing in 2023 ‘Vintage style’ in one of the world’s architectural gems, set dressed to create a multi-venue adventure playground of music, entertainment and dancing with THE best views of London’s iconic NYE fireworks over the River Thames!

I and the team at Hemingway Design are thrilled to be back at the Southbank Centre once again for Vintage New Year’s Eve Spectacular. We devised this event and have been curating it for almost 10 years, making me fall in love with going out on New Year’s Eve all over again! After a decade of attending these parties, I’ve broken it down into my 6 best bits of advice to make the most of this unforgettable evening.  Have a read and catch you on one (or all five) of the dancefloors at Vintage New Year’s Eve Spectacular!

Get there early – There is so much to see and do, so many spaces, bands, DJ’s, dance classes, photo opportunities, bars and eateries to experience. Even the queue to get your wristband and hang up your coat provides so many great outfits, hairstyles and brilliantly glammed up folk to marvel at.

Lace up them dancin’ shoes  – Get ready to hit the dance floor as this time we’re bringing you not one, not two, but FIVE themed pop-up night clubs for you to dance the night away in! Twirl around our 1930s Torch Club, party Studio 54 style at Disco Royale, learn some classic  moves from across the decades in the Land of a Thousand Dances, enjoy cocktails and cross continental culture in the High Lounge, and top it all off with a bop at Bar Bonkers with some serious 80s and 90s floorfillers. No need to choose whether you see in the new year with funk, pop, rock n roll, disco or swing – you can have it all!

Drink in the authentic detail 

If the glamour of the 1920s, 30s and 40s is your thing, the The Torch Club in the beautiful Royal Festival Hall Clore Ballroom, hosted by the incredible Claire Austin (aka Voodoo Doll) is an absolute blast! Kicking off with Natty Congeroo & Hotcha Paul playing 1930s hot jazz before The Moonlight Serenaders sweep you off your feet with their dazzling big band show starring Laura B, Charlie Thompson, Raina Brody & The Charms. Here you’ll also find arguably THE best dance classes of the early 20th century led by the inimitable Hoc & Mark. They will teach you some of the classic novelty dances of the era and no doubt get you doing the Lambeth Walk… Oi! After the clock strikes twelve, you can shake, rattle & roll into the early hours with COLBERT HAMILTON, the UK’s original BLACK ELVIS, as The Clore Ballroom transforms into a 1950s rock ‘n’ roll paradise.   

If it’s the disco era that tickles yer fancy then in the Disco Royale room the Six Million Steps collective bring you a whole 7 hours of classic, underground and motown disco and boogie. I have had a sneak preview of the playlist and these tracks give you a tiny taste of the first couple of hours that will get the party started. O’Jays – Message In Our Music, Harold Melvin & The Bluenotes – Satisfaction Guaranteed, Stevie Wonder – If You Really Love Me and so many more!

Bar Bonkers is just that, a bar that is bloomin bonkers with musical bingo hosted by Jess Indeedy and the whirlwind that is DJ Anna Greenwood taking through to the early hours on a guilty pleasures wave of 1980s and 1990s pop, rock and dance anthems.

The High Lounge offers music for The Jet Set, where you are taken on a musical journey around the world. Martin Green is one of London’s most celebrated DJ’s and as one of the stalwarts of the iconic Smashing clubnight has one amazing vinyl record collection and along with Martin Karminsky they will be spinning  cross continental collection of quirky dancy tunes from Latin Lounge to French Ye-Ye, Polynesian Pop, Brazilian Beat, Italia Go-Go and Euro Electro. Oh and don’t miss the Count Indigo led limbo at 11pm.

Then there is Land of a Thousand Dances where there’s the opportunity to test out your best moves, and learn some new ones. Here you’ll find rolling lessons leading you through some of the most popular dances of the 20th and 21st centuries. 

Whether it’s the the twist, the electric boogie, the jive or the charleston, you will be able to try new moves and hone your grooves with the expert teachers and then show them off all around the Royal Festival Hall all the way into 2023.

Dress to impress – The biggest party of the year calls for the best outfit of the year – what’s it gonna be? Have a look at The Vintage Festival instagram for inspiration – there’s plenty of photos from past events as well as great images from our vintage archives. So many of the revellers thankfully shun fast fashion and sport charity shop, vintage or timeless fashion finds. Be sure to get yourself photographed by our pro photographers or do it yourself in a vintage photo booth. 

Fuel up for a full on evening – From street food to our 5 course dining experience, we’ve got something on the menu for everyone! Check out all the food and drink  options here.

Don’t be afraid of making new pals – It is truly a friendly event. Whether you with friends, family or on your own, your likely to end dancing with someone you have never met before 

Grab the perfect spot for the the UK’s largest annual fireworks display – You know those fireworks over the Thames that people all around the world on the BBC as Big Ben strikes midnight? Well at the Vintage New Years Spectacular, you are on a terrace right there amongst it all. It’s the best spot to witness something that is world famous and then when you have linked arms with some of your fellow 2500 party goers and kissed your loved ones in 90 seconds you can be back on the dance floor for another couple of hours.

Don’t leave it until last minute – This is the biggest Vintage New Year’s Eve party in town with people travelling from all over the world to attend so grab your ticket today and don’t miss out! Head to the event page to check out ticket options and for more info.

Don’t plan to go running or to the gym the next day  – Your legs will be aching after all that dancing! 

This really is a party like no other, so rally the troops and get your New Years Eve sorted today!