Directed by Adrian Sibley (director of BAFTA award-winning The Show Must Go On, Baz Luhrmann) and narrated by Rupert Everett (My Best Friend’s Wedding), this definitive documentary takes an exclusive behind-the-scenes look at one of the world’s most eminent and unique culinary establishments, as it embarks on its first major renovation in 25 years.
At the heart of London’s theatreland, The Ivy’s renowned décor and dining experience has earned it a global fame on a par with its star-studded clientele. Now, The Ivy’s charismatic director, Fernando Peire and his outspoken Executive Chef, Gary Lee are undertaking an extraordinary transformation, while simultaneously welcoming camera crews into the restaurant for the first time in its history.
As the renovation commences, The Ivy closes its doors for a face-lift designed to bring the restaurant, which has hosted clientele from Marlene Dietrich to Winston Churchill, and Woody Allen to Nicole Kidman, into the 21st century. It’s a huge risk, but Fernando believes that now is the time to change their winning formula, transforming the décor, menu, staff and service so the restaurant can appeal to the next generation of executives, celebrities and leaders.
Through a series of intimate interviews, viewers are introduced to The Ivy’s team, a cast of characters that resemble a close-knit family, as well as some of its most famous regulars, including designer Calvin Klein, renowned actress Dame Joan Collins, artist Tracey Emin and Downton Abbey creator Julian Fellowes, who speak candidly of their personal experiences inside The Ivy.
From its final weeks as The Ivy of old, through to its re-opening as diners pass under its famous Art Deco windows – the only reminder of the original restaurant – to size up its historic face-lift, this observational film captures every aspect of a momentous reinvention of one of London’s most treasured and iconic culinary and cultural institutions.