Thanks to themes, 300 party revelers traveled from ancient Rome to the jungle and the Antarctic-without leaving the host's residence. Designs by Sean, a Dania, Fla.-based event design and production company, transformed a 22,000-square-foot residence into a world tour for a New Year's Eve party.
For starters, costumed butterfly and dragonfly performers, reflecting Florida's tropical environment, greeted arriving guests. Inside, a classical violinist performed while projections of famous works of art continuously dissolved upon the 16-foot-high ceiling. "The owner is an art collector, and the whole house has the feel of a museum," says Sean de Freitas, president of Designs by Sean. "We expanded on this mood." White chiffon and four floral arrangements addedto the graceful ambience.
For the cocktail reception, guests stepped into the living room. Designs by Sean built on the existing elements in the room, such as drapery and ceiling molding, to create a Roman holiday theme. Using columns, ivy, ferns, plaster statues, white chiffon and dramatic uplighting, the team created an elegant, clean look. Live statues-buff, tanned male performers clad in golden briefs-added excitement. "These 'live statues' really enhanced the atmosphere-guests were even feeding them," de Freitas says.
After cocktails, guests moved on to the library, where the mood was anything but studious. Designs by Sean had changed the room into a jungle-theme dance floor, decorated with lush foliage, hand-painted murals of a lion and a tiger, camouflage netting and handmade vines.
To make the jungle interactive, human hummingbirds, vines and other rainforest creatures mingled with the guests. Performers of capoeira-a Brazilian martial art/dance form-and samba dancers added energy and entertainment. The room included a 9-by-12-foot audiovisual screen showing jungle movies.
As a calming counterpoint, guests could retreat to the outside patio, where de Freitas and his team had created an Antarctic dessert room. The team again used white chiffon, which hung low from the ceiling and draped the walls, creating an igloo effect. Papier-mache ice rocks, built by Designs by Sean, and uplighting with soft-textured gels rounded out the glacial atmosphere.
After relaxing in this soothing environment, guests faced the future with a visit to a fortuneteller in the adjacent sitting room.-T.M.