ABU DHABI // Some of the 1,000 people expected to turn up at the travelling Amber Lounge nightclub last night paid as much as 15,000 (Dh81,169) for a table at the venue, built at the Hiltonia Beach Club on a platform that juts out into the sea. The nightclub, which opened at 10pm and closed at 4.30am, was expected to attract many of the Grand Prix drivers and some celebrities flown to the capital for the F1 weekend. The multiple F1 world champion Michael Schumacher, King Carl XVI Gustaf of Sweden and the Brazilian Ferrari driver Felipe Massa were among the 500 guests who danced the night away at the club on Saturday.
The Amber Lounge only opens in four Grand Prix cities in any one season and was created by Sonia Irvine, the sister of the former F1 driver Eddie Irvine. That works out to about one race in four this year. Meantime, Jenson Button was expected to celebrate his F1 championship last night at a hospitality suite created especially for him - the first time a driver has enjoyed such a privilege - at the Paddock Club on Yas Island.
The pop singer Janet Jackson was the guest of honour at the Saturday night F1 ball at the Abu Dhabi Golf Club, which raised Dh1.5 million to help provide water wells in some of Africa's poorest areas. Jackson, the younger sister of the late Michael Jackson, donated backstage passes and VIP tickets for her upcoming tour to the evening's auction to help raise money for fresh2o, a charity working for clean water in Africa.
A private round of golf with the multiple major championship winner Nick Faldo was auctioned off for Dh85,000, while another guest paid Dh350,000 for a 1939 Cadillac LaSalle "art car", painted by the artist Vincent Leow. On Saturday night, some 700 auction guests snacked on lobster and caviar while music from the British jazz singer Peter Grant and the flamenco band Gipsy Kings kept the party atmosphere going until late into the night. The model and actress Liv Tyler was also in attendance. Her father Steve is the lead singer of the rock group Aerosmith, which performed the closing night concert. Others included the actresses Neve Campbell and Tara Reid and the fashion model Kimberley Stewart, the daughter of the singer Rod Stewart.
Some of those scheduled to appear failed to turn up, including the aviation mogul Sir Richard Branson and Jay Kay, the frontman for the band Jamiroquai. @Email:email@example.com firstname.lastname@example.org