Article and photo shared by Rosemary Adams, St. Andrew’s Society of Lisbon
The beautiful Palacio Hotel in Estoril was once more the venue for the St. Andrew’s Society Annual Ball on the 26th November. This was a special anniversary celebration of 20 years of the Ball being held in the Hotel. Over 170 Scots and their guests gathered to honour Scotland’s Patron Saint in what was a most memorable occasion.
The skirl of the pipes played by Pipe Major Drew Sinclair of Thistle Piping Central Scotland greeted guests at the hotel entrance. In the warmth of the cocktail room, guests were welcomed by members of the Committee before progressing to the ballroom for dinner.
Master of Ceremonies for the evening, John Redmayne, opened the evening with enthusiastic words of welcome before one of our regular guests, Michael Reid from Aberdeen, delivered the traditional Selkirk Grace and added greetings from the St. Andrew’s Society of Aberdeen.
A delicious Carrot and Ginger Soup whetted appetites before the fish course of Smoked Salmon Mousse served with Cucumber and Rocket Salad. The sound of the pipes announced the arrival of the traditional Haggis which was given a dramatic address worthy of its fame by Valerie Braddell. It was enthusiastically devoured, enrobed with Glenfiddich Whisky generously sponsored by Prime Drinks. After a delicious dessert and a post dinner coffee with Pateis da Nata, the loyal toasts were given by John Redmayne who went on to introduce the guest speaker for the evening, scientist and journalist, Dr. Kit Eaton.
Dr. Eaton gave a most entertaining speech with mention of a host of celebrated Scots whose discoveries and inventions had made an impact on him personally starting with Joseph Lister and his development of antiseptic surgery and continuing through an impressive list of prominent Scots’ names. His speech was enthusiastically applauded by all present.
After dinner, we welcomed The Gary Blair Ceilidh Band from the Glasgow area and without more ado, the dance floor was packed as Scots and their guests kicked up their heels to a well-chosen selection of jigs and reels. It was not until the “wee sma’ hours” that the strains of “Auld Lang Syne concluded a very splendid evening. Happy revellers left the Palacio weary and foot-sore while others took advantage of the Palacio’s special offer of room rates and retired to their elegant rooms.
We now look forward to our annual celebration of the Burns Supper to be held on Saturday, 28th January in the Farol da Guia, Cascais.
Finally, the Society would like to offer a big word of thanks to all who contributed so generously to the success of the evening, To the Palacio for offering special room rates to our guests and supplying gifts to mark the 20 years of the Ball being held in the Hotel and to Prime Drinks, who again supplied the Glenfiddich whisky.