By Chris Jaffray
A high-flying international events organiser quit her events career to become a full-time party planner – for DOGS.
After more than three decades in the events industry, Niki Sohrabkani now hosts dozens of birthday paw-ties, dog Olympics, pool pawties and even Howl-o-ween bashes a year, costing thousands of pounds.
The animal lover, from London, walked away from her six-figure salary after a client asked her to host a party for 20 pampered pooches two years ago – and it was such a success and enormous fun, that she decided to do it full time.
Niki and her five-strong team have since hosted 30 exclusive parties for pampered pooches in the last 12 months – featuring themed decorations, dog-friendly drinks and snacks and even ball pools and obstacle courses for the pets to enjoy and their owners to post on social media.
And the married 54-year-old, who has two labradoodles of her own, Holly and Chelsea, said her luxury pup parties are especially popular with London’s glamourous Knightsbridge set – as well as well-heeled customers as far afield as LA and New York.
Niki, from London, said: “Having spent the last 33 years organising some of the most prestigious events around the world, I wanted to combine my passion for events and love of dogs.
“The first event I did was a private party for a client’s pup and 20 friends.
“It was a roaring success, so I thought what better way to celebrate our gorgeous furry friends than by curating fun events for dogs to enjoy and socialise.
“The UK is a nation of dog lovers owners want to celebrate their furry friends’ love and loyalty in style with an event – just like children’s parties.
“People want really great photographs that are Instagrammable so they can share them with their friends.
“We look after many clients from pampered princess pooches in Primrose Hill to Hooray Henries in Holland Park.
“They’re mainly well-heeled dog lovers in London, but we also have clients in Cheshire, Essex, New York and Los Angeles.
“Dog lovers think our pawties are fabulous, non-dog lovers think we’re barking mad.
“But our clients just love our parties and their dogs have a ball!”
In her previous career, Niki lived in Portugal, Singapore, Indonesia, Australia and Malaysia and organised more than 900 events.
Among these were an events series for Brazilian football legend Pele in London, a UNICEF ball for 1,000 VIP guests, Vaclav Havel’s state visit and The Prince’s Trust Gala in Dubai.
Niki launched The London Dog Party Company in 2018 after leaving the corporate world.
She said clients love the fact her team organise so games for the dogs while the humans can relax and enjoy canapés and champagne.
Since she launched her business, Niki’s team of five has grown to meet the rising demand and she believes the start-up will continue to grow.
And while her clients are mainly well-heeled dog lovers in London, she has even travelled as far as New York and Los Angeles to host the perfect party for her furry friends.
Each party can take six weeks to organise depending on the number of dogs, the party ingredients and of course the budget, and prices start at £500 for two hours of fun but run into the thousands for bespoke events.
Pooches are treated to pupcorn, pupcakes, pawsecco, pupbeer, with activities and decorations including pawty balloons and bunting, pedigree pawtraits, doggy bags, doggy disco, paws the pawcel, musical paws, fancy dogdress, and even a pup Olympics.
Niki said many clients prefer bespoke parties tailored to their specific needs, with one client requesting a Great Gatsby theme, meaning she had to replicate the 1920s setting from period costumes to food, music to set design, and another asking for a Harry Potter paw-ty.
And the businesswoman admitted the rise of social media apps has seen demands for her services grow.
Generous Niki also donates 30 per cent of all revenue her company makes to three different dog charities.
She added: “I am lucky to have a fabulously energetic team who are fun, creative and just adore dogs.
“We want to be innovative, with heaps of energy and hearts of gold.
“For the Great Gatsby theme, we had to get all the costumes created, it was brilliant.
“We did even have one request for a Harry Potter pawty!”