An inside look at the people, places, and ideas that move us.

Interview with Amber Lounge Mastermind


Get Ready For An Extravagant Weekend Of Glamour And Speed

Set yourself up for a lush night filled with live, international celebrity performances and DJ sets. Rub shoulders with some of the Grand Prix’s best teams, and did we mention the free-flow Champagne all night long?

Amber Lounge started in Monaco and has stretched across the globe, following the most glamorous Grand Prix racetracks from Abu Dhabi, Barcelona and Shanghai to Singapore. The world class fashion, fine dining and nightlife experience will leave you star struck with its exclusive lineup of events. Not to mention it’s exclusive lineup of personalities and celebrities in its guestlist.


Saturday starts off with the drivers alongside international models showcasing exclusive Haute couture looks from leading designers in a runway presentation. The vibrant show always attracts worldwide media coverage. And not forgetting the live singers, dancers, and music, including a drummers and saxophonist. So stay on your toes.


And Sunday, the most anticipated night of the weekend, is when the big party, EXTRAVAGANZA, will go down. Grand Prix drivers and teams will be celebrating post-race during with iconic DJs bringing you into the wee hours with their banging sets and smash hits. The dance floor calls.


But ever wonder what it takes to create such an iconic, world-renowned party?



Here we chat with Sonia Irvine, founder and CEO of Amber Lounge, to get an insider’s view of what happens behind the scenes.


1. Hi Sonia! Singapore’s Grand Prix is drawing near and we’re all excited! How did this year’s Amber Lounge Monaco in May go? What was your favourite moment?

Monaco was sensational, as ever! There’s such a great vibe around Formula 1 at the moment, and just as the sport is going from strength to strength, that was reflected in the fantastic spirit of our Amber Lounge weekend.

My favourite moment? Wow, so many to choose from. Our after-parties were incredible. Chris Willis, voice of David Guetta, was headlining and together with our international DJs ensured our F1 drivers, celebrities and other guests had the most amazing time and celebrated the weekend in style.

I’d have to say one of the big highlights for me was this year’s Amber Lounge Monaco Charity Fashion Show. It was our 11th show and I was thrilled to have Sir Jackie Stewart’s foundation ‘Race Against Dementia’ as the beneficiary of this year’s charity auction. Just like Sir Jackie and his wife Lady Helen, we have seen our mother fight a battle with dementia.

So many personalities and VIP guests, leading figures from Formula 1, sport stars, CEOs of global companies and other fantastically generous bidders, came together to help us raise USD 650,000 to support research into preventative medicine.

The generosity was overwhelming and I’m delighted to say that, for the first time in Singapore, this year’s Fashion Show on Saturday 16th September will also be for charity. We’ve chosen Make-A-Wish Singapore and I’m sure our silent auction will be a big success for such a magical cause.


2. Amber Lounge hospitality is considered the benchmark of luxury in the high-octane sport of F1. What does it take to still stay on top of your game after so many years?

Yes, our first event was in 2003 in Monaco, so next year we will celebrate 15 years of Amber Lounge F1 after-parties, something I’m incredibly proud of.

Fundamentally, we’re about celebrating the race weekend, partying in style and having fun. Ours is a dynamic club-style environment where guests can enjoy mixing with the F1 drivers, chart-topping artists, royalty, and celebrities like sports and movie stars.

Our ticket price ensures the crème de la crème are in Amber Lounge. Aside from enjoying an incredible night, it’s also a place of business opportunities—where you can meet influential people and decision makers. And it’s why some clients specifically book with us.

So it’s business and pleasure in one, and anyone who knows Formula 1 and Amber Lounge knows our motto is ‘Work hard and play hard!’ That’s what keeps us at the very top.


3. What are the biggest challenges when it comes to expanding the Amber Lounge brand internationally?

We started out in Monaco, and there will only ever be one Monaco Grand Prix, but Singapore is very much another ‘jewel’ in Formulas 1’s ‘crown’. It’s no coincidence that the Amber Lounge calendar includes such a spectacular race destination, along with Mexico City and Abu Dhabi. They are all distinctive locations. Glamorous and cosmopolitan with their own clientele of VIPs and celebrities—and a natural fit for the Amber Lounge brand.

So it’s very much the case that from a quantity point of view, less is more; the destination is key for us. But as Formula 1 continues to expand, naturally we’ll look at venues appropriate for Amber Lounge to spread its wings.


 4. Where do you see the Amber Lounge brand in 15 more years? And where does the name actually come from?

We’ll be preparing to celebrate our 30th Birthday! And what a party that will be!

Amber Lounge was, and is the original F1 after-party. But already—at this point—it has evolved into so much more. “The ultimate VIP lifestyle experience at Formula 1’s most exhilarating Grand Prix destinations” also offers a hospitality division. Of which provides clients bespoke race viewing, yacht experiences, accommodation, transfers—whatever guests need to enhance their weekend.

It’s the total F1 experience, and we even work with F1® Experiences to include paddock visits and driver meet and greets in the package. Equally, Amber Lounge Hospitality has gained a lot of traction ‘outside’ of F1 among clients looking for the same calibre of service Amber Lounge events provide—but on a smaller, more personalised scale.

We also have Amber Summer. It’s an extension of the world-renowned Formula 1 after-party, providing the hottest day-into-night beachside entertainment experience for those living in or visiting the south of France. We have firmly established it as a major destination in Monaco’s entertainment scene and are building a reputation for providing the perfect high-end pop-up service for the chicest events and occasions.

We’re ambitious no doubt about it, but more than that, it gives us a great deal of pleasure and satisfaction to continue delivering spectacular experiences that our guests thoroughly enjoy.

As for Amber, it’s my favourite colour. It’s also associated with warmth, light and strong spiritual properties. It’s alive, vibrant, distinctive, positive and energetic—all the things I envisioned Amber Lounge to be.


5. What makes Amber Lounge Singapore stand out from the other 3 Amber Lounges you’ve organised in Monaco, Mexico City and Abu Dhabi?

I don’t know a single one of our guests that doesn’t think Singapore is short of incredible. It’s such a melting pot of cultures, with a fabulous vibe and offers so many fantastic experiences in one city.

Of course, we have very close ties to the marquee Formula 1 races, and from that point of view the Singapore Grand Prix has become a much-loved event on the calendar. As the only F1 night race, the atmosphere at the Marina Bay Circuit is mind-blowing. So after the on-track action, guests literally “race” to party; because the after-party is as good as the main event here.

As a global commerce and finance hub, our Singapore event is also a great place for our guests to do business and for our exclusive and like-minded brand partners to impact their audiences.


6. If you had to pick the top 3 things for us to look out for at Amber Lounge Singapore, what would they be?

1. One hot guest list! F1 drivers, celebrities, sports personalities—even royalty. All letting their hair down to have a blast.

2. Our headliner and chart-topping sensation, Raye. At only 19 years of age, her music CV already boasts the second biggest selling single of the year with Jax Jones. Also, the monster hit "You Don't Know Me", two stellar EPs, the huge tune "By My Side" by Jonas Blue, writing credits on hits for Charli XCX, Snakehips and Blonde, and collaborations with Nas on the soundtrack to The Birth Of A Nation & Stormzy on her track 'Ambition'. She’s going to be amazing and she’s performing on both nights.

3. Our tables: simply the BEST party tables of the weekend. It’s adjacent to the dance floor and right in the heart of the action so that guests can rub shoulders with F1 drivers and their teams, celebrities, sports personalities and other VIPs. Along with the open bar of free-flow champagne and other premium spirits, intoxicating playlist and the interactive Magnum Pleasure Bar and pop-up Manhattan Bar, it’s the perfect spot. You can chill in between hitting the dance floor.


7. Do you still get star struck even after all these years? Who has made the biggest impression on you?

Of course! We adore our celebrity friends, old and new! They radiate the glamour, allure and excitement that we all find captivating. As the #1 Grand Prix party hotspot, Amber Lounge hosts A-list guests.

Justin Bieber, Kim Kardashian, David Beckham, Jason Derulo, Akon, JC Chasez, Chris Willis, Prince Harry of Wales, Cristiano Ronaldo, Pamela Anderson, Kate Upton and many others have partied alongside race winners Lewis Hamilton, Nico Rosberg, Jenson Button, Sebastian Vettel, Valtteri Bottas, Fernando Alonso, Daniel Ricciardo, and Kimi Raikkonen. It would be hard to choose a favourite from that list!


8. Finish the sentence—Champagne showers...

...until daylight hours.


Grab your tickets to the most exclusive party over the GP weekend in Singapore happening 16-17 September 2017 while you can.


Sunshine Nation

Sunshine Nation is a new kind of event and travel company that creates, markets and operates innovative lifestyle entertainment concepts.