Name Of Event: 2013 AIME
Welcome Reception Organiser: DG global Creative
Event Agency Type: Networking event
Client: Melbourne Convention Bureau
Venue: Showtime Events Centre, South Wharf Promenade, Melbourne
When: February 25, 2013
Pax: More than 2000
The Melbourne Convention Bureau (MCB) organised an evening welcome reception for hosted buyers and media the night before the Asia-Pacific Incentives & Meetings Expo (AIME). Staged at the Showtime Events Centre, South Wharf Promenade adjacent to AIME venue Melbourne Convention and Exhibition Centre, the event themed Melbourne LIVE! sought to showcase the city’s varied entertainment and epicurean choices and provide a relaxed atmosphere for networking.
Produced by DG global with catering from Showtime Events Centre, the event site incorporated four unique venues surrounding a “pop-up” inspired outdoor bar and entertainment space.
Roving waiters were seen dressed in black with white aprons bearing the names of their internationally-influenced dishes served at various stations – from Australian open grill specialties such as dry aged porterhouse steak and lamb loin drizzled with pomegranate dressing, Vietnamese rice paper rolls with green chilli, seafood and paella, Bratwurst sausages with caramelised onions, Premium King Island cheeses and bite-sized mini lime and coconut tartlets.
A diverse mix of entertainers was engaged for this event, including celebrity emcee and host Tim Campbell, Australian musician Jon Stevens, Music Theatre Australia’s solo pianist and vocalist Vinja Prtenjaca, Spanish guitar and dance duo Fiesta Flamenco, and one of Melbourne’s new bands Collective LIVE. At 9pm, the sky above the venue exploded into a spectacular display of fireworks.
Challenges and Triumphs
The main challenge was getting the logistics of the night to work, according to regional director and executive producer, Jon Smith.
“This meant thinking of the best place to locate the bars, stages and toilets; there was also limited space back indoors for catering for these numbers. It took quite a number of attempts and site plans before we were happy with the venue, and that Showtime was also comfortable.”
Disturbance was also a cause for concern.
“It was the first huge event for that area, so it was important the event went well and didn’t upset any of the venues and residents close by,” Mr Smith said.
The team staggered the bump-in over five days. After securing the permits for fireworks, the team made sure to inform tenants and residents about any expected noise on the event night and set up the night before.
“To ensure smoother entry for guests, it would have been better to have the media wall for photography inside the venue to avoid obstruction but in the scheme of things this is quite minor and overall we were extremely happy with the event,” Melbourne Convention Bureau CEO Karen Bolinger added.
The event saw more than 2000 guests in attendance, comprising over 500 hosted buyers and more than 40 international media.
Ms Bolinger felt the event was a great success as it perfectly showcased the city’s strengths in creating unique and memorable events while meeting the objective of encouraging guests to network.
“It really was a fantastic way to kick-start the two-day event and also highlight the city’s passion for food, wine and entertainment and its vibrancy,” she said.