SOMETIMES OUR GUESTS like to use our restaurants in ways that haven’t occurred to us. At times like these, we’re flattered when they create their own special occasion and give us a chance to share in the fun and excitement.
Earlier this year we had an unusual request from a soon-to-be married Los Angeles couple. Being rabid fans of the Harry Potter book series, they wanted to turn the Oak Room in our Beverly Hills Prime Rib into Hogwort’s Magic School and, as such, the venue for their wedding.
We’ve been the scene of countless weddings, receptions, and parties, large and small since we started. But this was a truly original idea, one requiring a lot effort to make sure everything would be just right – and that the young couple’s dream wedding would be all they hoped for.
Being out of the ordinary has been essential to our appeal since the beginning.
I was blown away by how our co-workers rose to the task. Some might even say they “went above and beyond the call of duty.” Our Beverly Hills Manager Chris Hopgood, who is also an ordained minister, took on the role of Professor Snape – black cloak, wig and all – to officiate at the ceremony. Our servers got into it too, wearing Society for the Promotion of Elfish Welfare (or S.P.E.W.) badges made by the bride’s sister.
They understood what the fantastical elements of the event meant to the couple and knew that, like everyone at the wedding, they had a part to play in bringing “Hogwort’s” to life. By the end of the evening, everybody had had a blast, including all the co-workers.
Memorable in every way.
We’ve enjoyed helping our guests realize some other equally unique ideas they’ve come up with for special occasions in the last couple of years. The Halloween and L.A. Kings hockey themed weddings we put together were pretty straightforward, albeit unexpected.
The Steampunk wedding caught us a little by surprise – just what was Steampunk anyway? We quickly learned that an event based on the sci-fi/fantasy sub-genre with its elaborate Victorianesque costumes and details, while challenging to stage, would give us the opportunity to be part of an evening that was memorable in every way. It was stunning – and a tremendous success.
Stunning – and a tremendous success.
At first, you might think a Lawry’s restaurant an unlikely place to hold such “untraditional” parties. But to me it makes perfect sense. Being out of the ordinary, with all the fun, entertainment and humor this can imply, has been essential to our appeal since the beginning.
After all, my grandfather practically invented the theme restaurant 90 years ago when he created the Tam O’Shanter, a “Scottish” diner in Los Angeles, 6000 miles from Edinburgh. SideDoor and Five Crowns in Corona del Mar are an authentic English-style pub and restaurant just a short walk from a popular Orange County beach.
There’s nothing like the theatricality of our Prime Ribs’ Silver Carts.
And, of course, there’s nothing like the theatricality of our Prime Ribs’ Silver Carts, our Carvers with their bright medallions and the Famous Original Spinning Bowl Salad ritual performed thousands of times since 1938. Over the years, our co-workers have always embraced the uniqueness and, again, the fun found at Lawry’s.
We encourage you to bring your ideas for special occasions to any of our restaurants. We’ll do our best to make them happen and guarantee we’ll have a great time doing it!
From the desk of Richard R. Frank