This year’s Vanity Fair Oscar party will mark the hot-ticket soiree’s 30thth anniversary.

While the magazine is keeping tight-lipped on what exactly is planned to commemorate the milestone (because editor-in-chief Radhika Jones wants the VIP guests surprised), it’s no secret that the dinner and after-party will, for the ninth consecutive year , take place in a custom-built venue on the grounds of the Wallis Annenberg Center for the Performing Arts in Beverly Hills. Construction takes about three weeks with an additional week dedicated to taking it all down.

Variety caught up with the party’s longtime architect Basil Walter and his first-time collaborator, creative director and designer Will Cooper, to talk about the four-month process of designing, planning and building this year’s bash.

What did Radhika Jones say to you about what she envisioned for this year’s party, especially since it’s the 30thth anniversary?

Walter: It was just a notion of, ‘How do we make it different. How do we change it?’ And I think bringing in Will as someone who hasn’t participated in it, there’s always an opportunity for freshness when you get a new set of eyes on something.

Will, what was it like getting the offer to work at what is considered the most legendary Oscar party?

Cooper: For me, it was kind of surreal because I only knew the party from the outside, but Basil has known the party inside and out forever. My background is really in hosting and hospitality. So for me this event is like a one-night hotel in a way. Giving a little teaser to what is coming, we approached it in that way. All the sequence of events throughout the day, and evening is like walking through a big hotel experience. You can eat, you can drink, you can dance, you can party. And visually, I think we’ve gotten there with a lot of strokes, which will be warm, and inviting, and sexy and very iconic.

Basil, is there anything you were warned about? Will it be the hardest and most challenging part of the job?

Walter: I always say it’s really hard to predict where people are going to go and hang out at the party. So we keep thinking, as Will designs hospitality and I do as well, where are we going to create a great bar — because we think everybody’s going to go to the bar. But then we find everybody goes over to another corner, and they want to talk somewhere else. Trying to predict those things and predict the flow is always quite challenging.

Basil, what was one disaster that happened before or during one of the parties that you thought couldn’t be fixed?

Walter: The biggest challenge is always the weather. We always try to create indoor and outdoor spaces. A couple of years, it was pouring rain and everything was wet and everybody was falling trying to finish everything. So fingers crossed for good weather. We also do get over 1,000 people coming into the party, and one of the big fears is always a big backup on the red carpet and someone particularly famous getting annoyed waiting. And of course, there are some fun stories from over the years, like years ago when a woman hid in the bushes overnight in order to try to sneak into the party.

Is a big part of the design making sure it’s airtight so people can sneak into the party?

Walter: That’s a huge part of it. That’s something over the years that we’ve really perfected. The security team that’s behind it are all former NYPD guys. We have very rigorous security reviews and code reviews. We’re actually building a building here that has to go through the same code reviews that we would if we were building a permanent building, so there are a lot of layers of planning there on the architectural side of things, and that involves making sure it’s very secure.

I know one thing you can reveal is that the arrivals line will be a red and gold motif and will include the return of a classic red carpet.

Walter: We’ve tried a variety of different looks over the years. We did do a classic red carpet at the beginning and then just varied that as the years went by. I think it being the 30th year, the idea of ​​creating a classic, nostalgic look at Hollywood was an important element.

Cooper: I think there was that balance of how do you celebrate 30 years, but also be modern at the same time. So it was kind of a given that it was going to be red. It’s the most classic.

How many different swatches of red carpeting did you look at before finding the right one?

Cooper: There are a lot of reds! But there’s red throughout the party, so you’re going to see a lot of matching and coordinating.