Ancient People Knew How To Party!
We might think we know how to throw a party here in Kuala Lumpur, we have our fair share of red carpet events, fashion weeks, champagne popping parties. But if you are convinced that our ancestors were conducting a boring life compared to us, think again… The ancient Romans for instance, besides advancing in many other fields, certainly made progress in the field of fun…they knew how to party!
Marini’s on 57 guides you back into the past to find out how people liked to keep themselves amused in different eras and places, until today, here in Malaysia.
Hedonism Of Rome
In Italian there is a saying, “Dolce far niente”, which literally means “Delicious idleness”. This is the concept behind parties in the Ancient Rome, characterised by indulgent and delicious relaxation, everything accompanied with wine.
Symbol par excellence of the Roman life, wine even had its own god, Bacchus. Its celebrations, Bacchanalia were popular and well organised as well as really wild, including animal sacrifice, drug consumption and group copulations (orgies). Many men were swingers, who did not hesitate to turn their households into sheer brothels to satisfy their great sexual appetite.
Government ministers today do everything they can to avoid any sordid secrets hitting the press, whereas Roman emperors were infamous for their crazy partying, with the average daily wine consumption for men reaching one gallon! Emperor Caligula even went as far as to turn the Imperial Palace in Rome into a brothel in order to help pay off some of his partying debts.
Splendour Of The Victorian Age
With the Victorian Age we move to England, where, in a current of peace and prosperity, the upper and middle classes changed the way of consuming their spare time. Dinner parties were truly refined affairs, with every detail in the right place.
All that mattered for hosts in this era was to flaunt one’s status by impressing guests with sumptuous decorations and elaborate dishes. After dinner, everyone was gathered in the parlour and kept amused with a wide array of parlour games or music entertainment.
In this context Ping Pong was born, as an after-dinner game, which afterwards reached the United States and speedily assumed a different status, turning into the widely played Beer Pong, symbol of any college party.
Extravagance Of La Belle Epoque
With La Belle Epoque we continue our journey in beautiful France, where the keywords during this era were optimism, elegance and progress. Casino, Cabaret, Bistros, Music halls were the way people kept themselves entertained.
It was a time in which, just by strolling on the streets of Paris, one could perceive this sense of confidence and “joie de vivre” (joy of life), with the worldwide famous Moulin Rouge marking the birth of the Can-Can dance. Exuberance was another characteristic signing this epoch, where Burlesque made its inroads, drinking was a social activity and Paris in general was one great ongoing party!
The Spirit Of The Roaring Twenties
Dynamism and modernity is what identified the Twenties. In this post-war epoch there was no authentic party without jazz music, fancy dress, smoking and heavy-heavy drinking. As drug and alcohol abuse was no mystery during this era, the United States even banned the production and sale of alcoholic in an attempt to reduce consumption among their people. This prohibition resulted in a booming underground liquor trade!
With the evolution of the woman’s position in social contexts, all the old cliché of acceptable behaviours were inverted. Women became more liberal than previous generations; they started to wear short skirts, bobbed hair, and did not disdain activities like smoking and drinking.
‘Petting parties’, in which people watched burlesque shows and were candidly kissing, assumed extreme popularity during the Twenties. If you have watched the movie the Great Gatsby, you probably have a sense of the seductive, excessive and luxurious vibes of this roaring, raunchy time.
Today: Think Champagne, Drink Champagne
Today whether you want to enjoy the romantic experience of the rooftop bar, make love with the flavours of a world-class restaurant, be cuddled after dinner, or pop champagne to baseline tunes, there is something for everyone in this great city of Kuala Lumpur.
However, if you want to stay classic, there is in fact one drink which has been considered a symbol of fun and partying for four centuries now: champagne. A timeless choice with that right sparkle, capable of instantly driving everyone crazy with glamorous brands ranging from Möet to G.H. Mumm and Dom Perignon.
Whether your goal is to have fun in perfect Roman Style (maybe not quite so hedonistic), flaunt your status like in the Victorian Age, drink with friends in a public space while enjoying good music similarly in the Belle Époque, experience a luxurious fervour… Champagne is the answer! For a look at a truly glamorous champagne list in equally opulent surroundings, do make a point to check out the menu at Marini’s on 57. From Crystal to Armand de Brignac, Marini’s has it all.
If your personality fancies more cocktails than wine, get inspiration from this article, advising you 10 cocktails for every occasion. Cheers!
If you were born in another time, which one would be your perfect match? Share your thoughts below.