Emmanuel Ray with chef Sarah Ali Choudhury
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Venus Awards 2018 Launch Party at Lush Studio, Soho

Main image: Emmanuel Ray with chef Sarah Ali Choudhury at Venus Awards 2018 launch, Lush Studio, London Soho

When Tara Howard invited me to the London launch of the awards ceremony she founded, I was excited! Mainly because the last time I saw her was way back in 2013 when she was running the historic Langtry Manor Hotel in Bournemouth. Tara is very entertaining, engaging and charming. I wanted to visit Bournemouth again, but it never happened. So I was looking forward to meeting her after 5 years. The event happened at Lush Studio, London Soho.

And as I had expected, Tara’s speech was very entertaining. She founded Venus Awards to honour local businesswomen and is taking it around the UK. So far, she’s done about 30 awards ceremonies and finally, is launching in London.

I met many interesting people including the founders of Lush, their staff, familiar faces and TV chef Sarah Ali Choudhury who looked as colourful as the food she makes! Dressed in a beautiful sari (not sure what the fabric was) with sequined embroidery, she waited impatiently by the buffet for the speeches to come to an end so she can treat all the guests to her delectable cuisine.

Sarah’s food was one of the highlights of the event. Delightful flavours, beautifully blended in an array of mouth-watering vegan dishes. It reminded me of the vegetarian food I’ve enjoyed in the households of south India. I’d definitely recommend Sarah as a caterer for any function that’s graced by guests who have a taste for exotic flavours.

Elizabeth Jones and Emmanuel Ray
It was great to have met Elizabeth Jones, UKIP NEC and UKIP Lambeth Chairwoman. She’s also an experienced family lawyer and has been to many of my events in the past.

Our paths have crossed several times, at various events in London’s social scene, from book launches to art exhibitions, networking events and private parties etc. It’s always a pleasure to see her. She was dressed all in black this time, and in a pair of her fancy boots. In fact, I hear she has a large collection of stylish boots.

I wore black and red with those fabulous two-toned shoes. Red rose from my garden, in my lapel! I wanted mad hair to contrast with the classic red/black and suited look. It’s always fun to do things a bit differently, don’t you think?

You can apply for a Venus Award or event better, get someone to nominate you for one. Most people are nominating businesswomen they think deserve recognition, but Men can be nominated too, providing their work/business etc has benefited women. CLICK HERE for registration/nomination of Venus London Awards. Nominees and applicants must either live or work in London. Do mention in the notes that you heard about it from “Emmanuel Ray.”

You can see more short video clips from the Venus Awards launch event on my Facebook page and profile.

For more images from the evening, search Facebook for “venus awards lush studio.” Here are a few more I took on my phone.

Nominee, Positive Role Model 2013 (National Diversity Awards, UK). Nominee, London Personality of the Year 2012 (London Lifestyle Awards). Winner, Fashion Icon of the Year 2011 (Fashions Finest Awards, UK).


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