Obama, Michelle host dinner for Queen Elizabeth. The menu, the guests. Kristin Chenoweth performs

SHARE Obama, Michelle host dinner for Queen Elizabeth. The menu, the guests. Kristin Chenoweth performs
SHARE Obama, Michelle host dinner for Queen Elizabeth. The menu, the guests. Kristin Chenoweth performs



Return State Dinner in honor Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II and His Royal Highness The Prince Philip Duke of Edinburgh hosted by The President of the United States and Mrs. Obama

Wednesday, May 25, 2011 –

Winfield House

Winfield House, where the President and Mrs. Obama will be hosting the Return State Dinner, is a mansion built in 1937 set on 12 acres of grounds in Regent’s Park, London, England – the largest private garden in or close to central London after that of Buckingham Palace. It has been the official ambassadorial residence of the United States Ambassador to the United Kingdom since 1955. The first house on the site was Hertford Villa, later known as St Dunstan’s. This was the largest of the eight villas originally built in the park as part of John Nash’s development scheme. Occupants of the villa included the Marquesses of Hertford, newspaper proprietor Lord Rothermere, and the American financier Otto H. Kahn. The villa was damaged by fire in the 1930s and was subsequently purchased by the American Woolworth heiress Barbara Hutton who demolished it. Hutton built the existing Neo-Georgian mansion designed by Leonard Rome Guthrie. She renamed the mansion Winfield House for her grandfather Woolworth founder Frank Winfield Woolworth. During World War II, the house was used by the Royal Air Force. After the war, Hutton offered it to the U.S. Government for use as the Ambassador’s residence. President Truman accepted the leasehold for the token price of $1, and renovations began. Ambassador Winthrop Aldrich took up residence in 1955.

The house was refurbished by Ambassador and Mrs. Walter Annenberg in 1969, and renovated again between 1997 and 1999. The house has been visited by Her Majesty The Queen Elizabeth II, several U.S. presidents and many distinguished guests. The house is listed on the U.S. Secretary of State’s Register of Culturally Significant Property, which denotes properties owned by the U.S. State Department that have particular cultural or historical significance. In 1999, George Mitchell chose Winfield House as the site for private negotiations that proved pivotal to progress in the Northern Ireland peace process. Winfield House today reflects the contributions of all the ambassadors and their families who have resided there. The U.S. government purchased furniture and some works of art from Barbara Hutton in 1947, but most of the house’ treasures were gifts of Ambassador and Mrs. Annenberg, other ambassadors, and many friends of the United States. Americans Abroad: Masterworks by Modern and Contemporary Artists, an exhibition currently on display at the residence, was envisioned by Ambassador and Mrs. Susman and brought together by the U.S. Department of State’s ART in Embassies Program.

Attendees at the dinner include:

Her Majesty The Queen

The Duke of Edinburgh

Rt. Honorable David Cameron

Mrs. Samantha Cameron

Viscountess Astor

Admiral James Stavridis

Lady Ashton of Upholland

Mr. Tom Hanks

Mr. Tim Collins

Mr. David Beckham

Mrs. Doris Kearns Goodwin

Mr. Colin Firth

Mrs. Marjorie Susman

Mr. Chris Dercon

Mrs. Ffion Hague

Mr. Joshua Berger

Ms. J.K. Rowling


The three course meal will include lobster ravioli, griddled filet of aged Highlands beef, crushed jersey royals with rosemary, asparagus and minted broad beans, topped off with classic pecan pie and brandy ice cream for dessert.


American Tony Award winning singer and actress Kristin Chenoweth (born July 24, 1968) will perform after the dinner. Chenoweth is renowned for her roles in musical theatre, film and television and is best known on Broadway for her performance as Sally Brown in You’re a Good Man, Charlie Brown (1999), for which she won a Tony Award, and for originating the role of Glinda in the musical Wicked (2003). More recently, Chenoweth guest starred and received a Satellite Award for “Special Achievement for Outstanding Guest Star” in the Golden Globe wining television series Glee. Chenoweth is also well known for her television roles in The West Wing and Pushing Daisies.

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