The Zoological Society of London (ZSL) hosted its first-ever fundraising gala in the heart of ZSL London Zoo and raised a fantastic £135,000 for endangered Asian lions!
The exclusive event, which launched ZSL’s new Lions400 fundraising campaign, saw scores of the capital’s social elite descend on the famous London landmark for a night like no other.
Tables were snapped up by philanthropists eager to help ZSL raise £5.7m to protect and save the last 400 Asian lions left in the wild and create a state-of-the-art Asian lion hub and exhibit at ZSL London Zoo.
The evening saw ZSL London Zoo transformed into an Asian-inspired wonderland. Guests were immersed in an Indian themed adventure, journeying through the Zoo on tuk tuks, surrounded by the smells of authentic cuisine, the sound of Indian music, and the sights of the animal houses after hours, all designed to make them feel they’ve just stepped off a plane in India.
After visiting the penguins at Penguin Beach, nibbling Indian canapés with the Sumatran tigers at Tiger Territory and sipping cocktails with ZSL’s pride of lions at the Lion Terraces, guests entered a stunning giant safari tent to enjoy a sumptuous Indian feast.
After dinner, Christie’s auctioneer Georgina Wilsenach encouraged guests to dig deep for lions and bid on incredible lots including artworks by acclaimed artist and Royal Academician Phyllida Barlow, and South Africa’s leading artist Keith Joubert. There was even a once-in-a-lifetime chance to visit the last remaining Asian lions in the Gir Forest, India, accompanied by a ZSL conservationist.
The evening was hosted by Simon King and featured an acoustic performance by Dan Gillespie-Sells of The Feeling.