Just before the world turns its head Wimbledon’s way, there is a window of anticipation I like to fill with an epic party for the community.

Attended by a wonderful blend of local Londoners, from the Mayor of Merton to Flex FM DJ Danny Blaze, this year’s Wimbledon Tennis Party exceeded even my expectations.

As the clock struck 7pm, 250 guests dressed almost entirely in white arrived at Hotel Du Vin, Wimbledon to float up the tennis-lawn-green ‘red carpet’. The beautiful terrace room soon filled as guests were greeted with wine and canapés. Gradually the crowd spilled out into the grounds of Cannizaro Park to enjoy the mild evening, no doubt enticed by the sweet-smelling aroma of the finest meats roasting on the hotel’s barbecue and the sight of the Wimbledon Brewery crew serving its beautifully crafted English beer.

However, this idyllic picture doesn’t tell the whole story: the day itself was most certainly not glorious – the afternoon had been incredibly stressful, as we set up the venue while watching torrential rain pound relentlessly against the Orangery's glass windows. I was informed that if the rain didn't stop by 6pm, the barbecue would be pulled and the colourful deck chairs we had placed carefully around the grounds would be folded up and put away. I left the hairdressers almost in tears as the rain continued to soak my clothes and plaster my freshly blow-dried hair against my face.

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But slowly things began to come together, with Fever-Tree ensuring lashings of lemonade were ready to pair with copious amounts of Pimm’s; Punchy Drinks setting up stall, and Sipsmith Gin busily crafting bespoke tennis-inspired strawberry cocktails.

At 5pm, Flex FM arrived to set up the stage for their resident DJ Danny Blaze, who were booked to play the final two hours of the evening, and a beautiful girl walked into the room and headed to the stage for a sound check: as rising star Hatty Keane – recently back from touring with Ed Sheeran, Rudimental and Ellie Goulding – sang a few lines, the hairs stood up on the back of my neck. Her voice was strong, and took my breath away. Next, Malory, our much-loved local Wimbledon singer-songwriter, began to strum her guitar and play a few songs to test the room’s acoustics and ambience. Her catchy songs and positivity cheered me up (but I still kept my back to the windows).

The room was ready. Punchy Drinks offered my team bottles of their Spiced Rum Punch and they toasted what was set to be a great night. All that was left to do was to get myself ready. I dashed home to find my favourite make-up artist waiting to freshen me up. With Arif talking me into a bright pink shade of lipstick that I eventually succumbed to, I took my dress out of its Ela London bag and slipped it on. Turning to find my shoes, I glanced outside and something magical happened: the rain stopped and a wave of sunshine lit up my garden. Jumping for joy, I hugged Arif and we drove back to the hotel for final preparations.

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Emma Barker, Hotel du Vin Wimbledon’s beautiful GM, was the first to arrive. After welcoming her to her own hotel, I realised who she was and how silly I’d been, and decided to grab stylists Hel and Mel for a quick drink and a cheeky smoke behind the barbecue before the guests arrived. While my events manager Flora was printing off the guest list, Malory began to sing and, within minutes, the room was filled with beautiful happy people.

Suzie Kennedy, the renowned Marilyn Monroe tribute act, passed me a tennis racket and asked if I'd like to take the game outside. By 8pm, guests were rapt on the Fever-Tree deck chairs, cheering or fielding as we hit the ball ‘out’ and into the wilderness of Cannizaro Park. Ross, founder of The Secret Face Clinic, managed to nonchalantly catch the ball one-handed whilst having a conversation and sipping Pimm’s.

The grounds were made more magical with giant iridescent bubbles from Bezerkas Circus – though Mikey the Macaw and his parrot pal Mia did not take a shine to them. Mikey soon climbed onto my arm and we took a walk to meet and greet the guests away from those strange liquid spheres floating in the evening sky.

As Hatty performed her latest track, ‘Freedom’, the crowds came in to listen. Magician Diobo knew it cued up his moment to stun my guests, and he invited me to the stage. He lay me on a table and, anticipating something special, I flung my hat into the audience watching. I had the most peculiar sensation of being lifted, and could hear gasps and cheering. I'm not sure how high I was levitated, but it was enough to unnerve me, and I was grateful when I felt my body float back down to earth.

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Shaking Diobo’s hand with the utmost respect, it was time for Polka Theatre’s charity raffle. Prizes were generously donated by Hotel du Vin, NEOM organics, Elys, the new Kababji restaurant and Creams luxury tearoom in Wimbledon, as well as talented cake-makers Zays Bakes.

As the sun went down and the warm summer evening fell upon Cannizaro Park, it was DJ Danny Blaze's turn to play an exclusive Ibiza set for the fun-loving Wimbledon people. We felt as though we danced through the night as house anthems kept the stage full of movers and shakers, but it was midnight as we all hugged and loitered in the grand reception waiting for carriages to take us home.

It was one of the best parties I have thrown for a long time (well, since March anyway!) and I need a speedy recovery before hosting the next tennis party at the Dog & Fox this week. At this rate, I'll be kippered by the time the tennis starts on July 1st, but at least that’s the perfect excuse to surf the sofa, watching the glorious games with all the leftover lemonade and Pimm’s with friends…