The Sydney Municipality rented out the iconic Bondi Beach for one night for an exclusive party worth tens of thousands of dollars.
Part of the beach will be closed to the public for one night only on November 12 due to an international event known as Dinner on White.
The party was founded in Paris by François Pasquier in 1988 and has since become a global phenomenon celebrated in more than 60 countries.
Waverley Council approved the $32,411 event, which will see the popular beach decked out for 5,000 participants dressed head-to-head in white.
Members will pay $93 plus a $15 membership fee to bring their own picnic mat to the fenced-in party.
Baskets and wine are available at an additional cost and must be pre-ordered from the event organizers.
The event will be held on Bondi Beach for the second time – the last time was in 2013.
This year the picnic will be held in front of Bondi Pavilion, but it has previously been held on UNESCO-listed Cockatoo Island, Sydney Harbor and in front of the Sydney Opera House.
Locations are usually kept secret, even for guests, until the day of the event.
“It’s been… 10 years of waving napkins and sparklers, 10 years of friendship and dancing under the stars, 10 years of fine dining and great fashion, 10 years of extraordinary performances, 10 years of memories…” – says the website.
Bondi Beach precinct co-organizer Lenore Kulakauskas told The Sydney Morning Herald that the public beach should be accessible to all.
“It doesn’t have a ‘to let’ sign hanging on it.” Privatization of the beach for individual functions or [commercial club] the proposals go against the egalitarian nature of this space,” she said.
Waverley Council defended the decision to host the event, saying it would be positive for the area.
“High-impact event benefits include overnight accommodation and related expenses – breakfast, lunch, shopping,” said an SMH spokesperson.
They said the money would be used to maintain public spaces and fund other free activities available to the whole community.
NCA Newswire has reached out to Waverley Council for comment.