fortnightly bite-sized news and ideas for the corporate event planner
5 July 2020
There’s something to be said about conference accommodation right near the airport – especially when it comes to hosting international delegates. This is why news of a brand-new hotel located steps away from Terminal 4 at Melbourne Airport has us jumping for joy. The first sod was turned this week on the construction of the 464-room, dual-branded Novotel and ibis Styles hotel, which is slated to open in 2021. Upon completion, the property will offer a gym, pool, café, bar, restaurant and conference room facilities, as well as resulting in 120 job opportunities. On the project, Accor’s chief operating officer Pacific Simon McGrath said: “With more than 650 flights in and out of Melbourne Airport every day, we’re confident that this hotel will quickly become a new destination in itself for passengers, offering easy access to a choice of great accommodation, amenities and state-of-the-art conferencing.”
• Ground has been broken for the brand new Wellington Convention and Exhibition Centre that also combines public space with a public exhibition gallery and cafes. The three-storey purpose-built facility will provide around 17,750 sqm of floor space, and is expected to be completed by 2022.
• In an effort to reduce plastic waste, Marriott International has announced that its single-use toiletry bottles will be replaced with large, pump-topped bottles across its global portfolio. When fully implemented, the program is expected to prevent 500 million bottles from going to landfill.
• Marriott International has signed an agreement with Iconic Hotels to open its first Canberra property, with `Midnight Hotel’ to open in September under the Autograph Collection brand. The property will offer 199 rooms, a restaurant, bar, indoor swimming pool, wellness centre, conference and event spaces and a guest lounge.
• The light rail stop on Sydney’s Anzac Parade is slated for completion in March 2020, connecting University of New South Wales venue the Roundhouse to the CBD. The stop will see services to and from the city every eight minutes.
• CapitaLand’s wholly owned lodging business unit, The Ascott Limited, is cementing its position as the largest serviced residence operator in Singapore with a record number of openings this year. Citadines Connect City Centre Singapore will increase Ascott’s total portfolio in Singapore to 17 properties.
Encore presents a blooming good lunch
The Encore team at Crown Palladium outdid themselves recently, creating a feast for the eyes at the garden-themed ‘Where Exceptional Opportunities Bloom’ million dollar lunch.
Partnering with The Children’s Cancer Foundation, the team adopted a mixed media approach by decorating the space with more than 140, custom-made paper flowers and installing projection mapping on the tables with blooming flowers, creeping vines, rippling water and fluttering butterflies.
The stage was fitted out with four daisy-shaped LED screens, angled to tower over guests.
More than $2.1 million was raised at the event through guests bidding in a traditional auction.
Experience Cairns & Great Barrier Reef, the natural place to meet. Apply Now!
Sell TNQ is a unique educational program designed to give event professionals from Australia and New Zealand the opportunity to experience why Cairns & Great Barrier Reef is the premier business events destination.
The main program will be held in Cairns from November 14 - 17, with optional post-touring in Port Douglas and Palm Cove from November 17 - 19.
The all-inclusive program features social functions, a gala dinner, touring days and a one-day workshop with the regions’ leading business event suppliers.
GM appointed for Little Albion, a Crystalbrook Collection Boutique Hotel
Christopher Greening has been welcomed into the Crystalbrook Collection fold, taking up the post of general manager at boutique Surry Hills hotel Little Albion, a Crystalbrook Collection Boutique Hotel.
Christopher joins Crystalbrook following a decade-long hospitality career. Most recently he was executive assistant manager for Meriton Suites, where he pre-opened two hotels.
On his appointment, Christopher said “Crystalbrook was an incredibly attractive company to work for; fresh, vibrant and progressive. The group’s brand pillars align with my core values... especially empathic and stylishly witty!”
Imploding desserts
We’ve attended a fair few famils in recent months, and each of them has featured some sort of dessert that was poured with warm syrup, beaten with a stick or set fire to, all in an effort to open it up and reveal hidden treasures within.
The benefit of this extravagance? About 99 per cent of attendees whipped out their phones and uploaded a video to their Instagram stories.
Just, erm, keep the fire extinguisher close.
As we know, an event starts well outside the ballroom. This is why everyone involved - from digital marketers to keynote speakers – should be trying their best to create a favourable impression early on. Obviously a hotel concierge we encountered recently was not privy to this fact.
A couple of our team members arrived for an event 15 minutes early, only to be told to go away and come back in 15 minutes. When we asked if there was a bathroom nearby, the curt response was “no”. As we walked back outside into the cold night air we were already left with a bad taste in our mouth – one that even the best wine couldn’t eradicate – and all before the event had even started.
Not happy, Jan.
 special deal 
Celebrate Christmas at Oaks
Yep, it’s already time to start thinking about Christmas.
Oaks is here to help you along with some Christmas celebration and festive season getaway ideas.
A vast array of venue options are on offer, from beachside resorts, cool hinterland hideaways and chic spaces in the city.
They’ve got a venue option that is sure to answer your Christmas wish list.
Find out more here.
how to...
Create an organisational culture where creativity thrives.
Nigel Collin provides two steps to achieve this goal.
Click here to learn more.
 hot speaker 
To the rescue
With news that Thai cave rescuer and world-record holding British diver John Volanthen will be speaking at IBTM World 2019, we thought it was time to give him a mention. John has over 20 years’ experience in cave exploration, and most famously played a critical role in the Tham Luang Thailand cave operation last year, which was one of the most complex and dangerous rescues the world has ever seen. At IBTM World, John will discuss keeping calm in a crisis – and he’s probably one of the most qualified people on the planet to speak on the topic. Find out more about him here.
 entertain me 
Not another KeepCup!
At micenet, we’re all for event sustainability. But now that we’ve accrued enough KeepCups and drink bottles to open our own shop, we feel that perhaps it’s time to think of something different. Take for example the sustainability workshops Michelin Star restaurant Bo.lan set up for delegates at the recent TCEB International Media Familiarisation Trip. Extending some of the restaurant’s own sustainability initiatives, Co-chef Bo Songvisava led groups through making paper from recycled dockets, cleaning agent from leftover fruit scraps and re-usable wax cloths to wrap up sandwiches. Talk about thinking outside the KeepCup.
how to....
Fit it all in.
Megan Peters provides a few tips on how to master the juggling act.
Click here to learn more.
    Gin, gin, glorious gin!
    Cheap wine.
 learn about 
 quick fix 
• A common mistake we’ve encountered lately is organisers putting food in front of guests and then having someone give a speech or kick off a performance. Attendees are usually hungry and ready to tuck into their dinner at this point, but don’t touch it out of fear of appearing rude. This practice is both a huge tease and can result in the chef’s delicious creation going cold.
• Aside from flawless organisation, the one thing fellow famil trip attendees have said separates a good program from a great one is the amount of free time allocated. Now, this might seem counter-intuitive to getting your suppliers’ products out there, but humans aren’t robots and appreciate a little down time. Plus, it allows them to catch up on emails and check in on the office.
• Holding an outside cocktail function with a couple of chairs scattered around? Don’t. Either have enough chairs for everyone, or don’t have any. We’ve attended a few events where attendees zeroed their focus not on the canapes, drinks, décor or music but on stalking out an available seat. At a night-time soiree, nobody wants to be reminded of trying to find a parking spot on Sunday afternoon at their local shopping centre.
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October 7-10, 2019
ICC Sydney
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October 29-31, 2019
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December 7-9, 2019
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