More than 100 guests attended the ‘A Taste of Portugal’ event at the store on Brompton Road in Knightsbridge to celebrate the ceramics of Bordallo Pinheiro, alongside those of London-based Portuguese artisan potter Jose Carvalho.
The shop featured displays of Bordallo Pinheiro tableware and home décor pieces, along with some unique pieces by Jose.
Attendees included journalists, bloggers, designers and existing and new customers, representatives of local residents’ associations, the Brompton design district, the Portuguese Chamber of Commerce and a director of the V&A museum.
Guests were served modern interpretations of classic Portuguese dishes, prepared in the Divertimenti Cookery School by Portuguese chef Leandro Carreira, formerly chef patron of London restaurant Londrino.
The Portuguese Ambassador to the United Kingdom Manuel Lobo Antunes also paid a visit. He spent over two hours chatting with guests – and invited the Divertimenti team to join him at a reception at the Embassy the following evening, where the efforts of Divertimenti to promote Portugal and Bordallo Pinheiro were mentioned in welcome speeches.
Commenting on the day, Divertimenti managing director Ben Phillips said: “After a lot of hard work by the team and support from our brands, the day was a great opportunity to showcase not only all things Portuguese, but also [to show] what really can make retail special – and relevant – in today’s world. There was a real buzz and enthusiasm in the store and everyone made a lot of new friends!
“Many customers took advantage of the fantastic display of ceramics to add to their collections, whilst one guest purchased the stunning centrepiece ‘Banana’ bowl [by Bordallo Pinheiro] on the day, to take to her home in France.”
A highlight of the event was a visit from Divertimenti founders Mike and Suzi Schneiderman, who said they are still “addicted to cooking and kitchenware” and are delighted by the progress of the store. Divertimenti was established by Mike and Suzi in 1963 and is billed as one of the pioneering kitchenware stores in London.
Divertimenti is set to announce a new event in the Cookery School with Leandro shortly, and expects this event to be the first of many celebrations of its brands and partners. The Divertimenti Cookery School, which is located on the lower ground floor of the store, offers classes for beginners through to skilled chefs.
TOP: (L-R): Chef Leandro Carreira and Portuguese Ambassador to the United Kingdom Manuel Lobo Antunes
BOTTOM: Divertimenti was one of the first retailers to bring Bordallo Pinheiro’s work to the UK and carries a varied range of pieces from the brand. It will be displaying a selection of works from Bordallo Pinheiro in-store until May 20.