Without crossing the line into corporate preachiness, we'd posit to say that team-building days are a valuable part of keeping company morale high. The Hire Space team, for example, recently had a half-day away day (an away half-day?), during which we concocted cocktails and baked, and one unfortunate team member turned custard into scrambled eggs – admittedly a less impressive form of alchemy.
This is all part and parcel of the fun of a team-building day, where different departments can come together to complete a task in unison. One of our favourite London venues, CarouselCarousel, is offering a smorgasbord of new team-building activities at its beautiful Baker Street home – all of which include lunch for all concerned. And a meal at Carousel is a special treat indeed: the kitchen boasts regularly rotating guest chefs from around the world, who showcase their respective cuisines. Recent favourites have included fare from Japanese, Portuguese and American Pacific-Northwest traditions.
Before we get carried away with detailing the delicious foodstuffs Carousel has to offer, let's talk about the workshops. For those looking to try their hand at cooking for themselves, the venue is offering a pasta-making workshop. When in Rome, right? Depending on tastes and preferences, pasta chefs will spend their bonding sessions making meat or veggie ravioli, before digging into their masterpieces with some fine Italian wine.
While we're on the food-and-drink train, let's introduce Carousel's cocktail-making masterclass. Teams will learn to make two seasonal and contemporary cocktails, after which they'll channel their inner Gregg Wallaces as they taste and judge the opposing teams' drinks. After the cutthroat contest – and a delicious lunch – they'll leave with a pack of sugar syrups for some home mixology.
If the preferred emphasis for the day is less on food and more on the utensils used to pick up said food, you're in luck. Guests can learn to carve their own wooden spoons at the venue's Scandinavian-style upstairs space, where the talented team from Grain & Knot will lead the tutorial on the art of spoon whittling. After lunch – which may be assisted greatly with your new apparatus – participants can take home their crafted spoons for a show-and-tell (gloating) session to family and friends.
To team build in perfect harmony, companies may want to consider Carousel's singing workshop, run by Some Voices, a contemporary London choir whose spin on pop classics from Bowie to the Beastie Boys has led to sell-out shows and praise from The Guardian and Time Out. The three-hour singing session will get sets of vocal cords chirping merry melodies – with lunch provided too, of course.
Pasta Making: 2.5 hours; 8-60 pax.
Cocktail Making: 2 hours; 8-32 pax.
Spoon Carving: 2 hours; 5-20 pax.
Singing: 3 hours; 30-60 pax.