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Mallya's Indian Empress party opens Monaco weekend in style 22 May 2009

The Fly Kingfisher boat party on the Indian Empress.
Formula One World Championship, Rd 6, Monaco Grand Prix, Practice Day, Monte-Carlo, Monaco Dr. Vijay Mallya (IND) Force India F1 Team Owner and HSH Prince Albert of Monaco.
Formula One World Championship, Rd 6, Monaco Grand Prix, Race Day, Monte-Carlo, Monaco

Force India boss Vijay Mallya threw his now traditional Monaco opening party on Thursday night, welcoming a who’s who of Formula One racing to the gangplank of his mega yacht, the Indian Empress. With 150 guests for dinner and 500 for dancing afterwards, it once again proved a night to remember.

Among the guests were Renault’s Flavio Briatore, Red Bull's Christian Horner, BMW's Mario Theissen, Williams’ Adam Parr, Formula One Management CEO Bernie Ecclestone, CVC's Donald McKenzie, Sir Richard Branson and Sir Philipp Green.

Famous sportsmen present included legendary 400 metre specialist and four-time Olympic gold medallist, Michael Johnson, former F1 world champions Nigel Mansell and Jacques Villeneuve, plus the three Force India drivers for 2009, Adrian Sutil, Giancarlo Fisichella and Vitantonio Liuzzi.

Arguably the most special guest, however, was HSH Prince Albert of Monaco, returning to the Indian Empress, once more accompanied by Charlene Wittstock. “Vijay’s parties have established themselves as a tradition that I always attend with great pleasure,” Prince Albert commented.

Branson, a first timer to Mallya’s Monaco entertainment, added: “This is what I understand the glamour of Formula One to be! Vijay, thank you for inviting me - perhaps you will one day come and join me in space!”