NAME: J Farren-Price Gala Dinner
TYPE: Special Event
CLIENT: J Farren-Price Jewellers
VENUE: Newmarket Stables, Randwick
BY: Funktionality Events and Experiences
NO. ON ORGANISING TEAM: 3 – Scott Bellingham, Jen Rudland – senior event managers, Tracy Wood – director
PAX: 120
BUDGET: Top Secret

WHAT YOU DID:

The J Farren-Price Gala Dinner, hosted by Krysten and Julian Farren-Price, is an extravagant event held approximately every two years to showcase their exquisite jewellery and many of the world’s finest Swiss watches. Since 2006, Funktionality has designed and managed these exclusive events across multiple unique venues, with varying numbers of guests, each a success in their own right.
The overall design intention of this particular event was to create a welcoming, festive feeling offering rustic elegance. In keeping with this concept, an environment was created to deliver multiple benefits; in particular, product sales combined with the ultimate goal of improved brand engagement.
Funktionality created this new design direction at the unique new venue, the Newmarket Stables. Reflecting the change in focus for this market segment, the emphasis was placed on the entire event experience, including greater interaction with the products of the partner brands. This was achieved through the display of a larger product range via individual partner brand environments, which included 14 suppliers of jewels, watches, and cars. A custom designed store was created within each stable to showcase their products while keeping with the specific guidelines and requirements for how their brand and space should be presented. This ultimately allowed guests more time with specific pieces to deliver an informed, knowledgeable choice and learning experience.

SPECIAL TOUCHES:

The event design evoked an air of luxury and exclusivity worthy of the J Farren-Price brand. Custom manufactured and hand-painted signs, such as those found in The Strand, and striped awnings, found in European high streets, were used to create a premium High Street experience. Carefully designed and centrally controlled lighting replicated a warm afternoon of shopping transitioning into an intimate evening dinner to contribute to this designer experience.
The attention to detail in the personalised table settings was used to create a unique fine dining experience like no other! Premium blooms were stylistically arranged in rustic and crystal cut vases, striped ribbons delicately encased every napkin, each menu was uniquely monogrammed with the guest’s name, and mahogany tiffany chairs were used to correspond with the overall aesthetics to complete the indulgent setting in the stables.
Funktionality created a private high street arcade full of the most desired watch, jewellery, and car brands. A sumptuous meal by the noted Aria Catering followed, with a special guest appearance from celebrity chef Matt Moran. Show stopping entertainment in the form of Gregg Arthur, from New York, entering the stables on a Harley Davidson, and a format that allowed J Farren-Price’s guests to relax and gain intimate exposure to a range of partner brands combined to enhance the individual brands’ identity and value.

CHALLENGES:

The client recognised a need for a larger event scope to improve sales and create market longevity, encouraging a complete shift in the marketing approach, event brief and event format from previous years. Guests were invited to actively participate by touching and feeling the brands, as opposed to only being able to view them, which was the case in the past. This approach shifted the focus of event planning with a new venue choice, a new structure to the evening, and in how the brands were showcased to guests. Rather than all brands being displayed as one, the brief was to have 12 brands in their own unique space. In all there would be 14 almost mini events within an event.
Safety was a major factor in the smooth running and success of the overall event and an integral part of the event design process. Secondly, due to the extremely high value items on site for the duration of the event, a security audit was crucial.

OVERCOMING CHALLENGES:

Working in close consultation with the client, Funktionality developed an approach that would identify strongly with the new event goals. The first stage was to secure a new and unique venue, ideal for an event of this magnitude. Funktionality was ultimately able to source the Newmarket Stables for its history and grandeur, and unlikely use for a special event of this nature.

The event marketing strategy to align J Farren-Price with other brands of a similar echelon in different fields was the foundation of the plan. The introduction of Aria Catering, incorporating a personal appearance from Matt Moran combined with the use of an unknown venue of high distinction in the prestigious equestrian industry was core to the creation of a suitable environment. In collaboration with Trivett, representing premium automotive brands such as Bentley, Aston Martin, Rolls Royce and Harley Davidson, and by incorporating these iconic brands into all marketing materials, the event’s focus shifted from simply a “diamond dinner” to a “premium lifestyle event.”
The event’s safety issue was addressed in the safety audit, which involved a detailed risk assessment incorporating bump in, event duration and bump out components of the event. A number of potential safety issues were identified and the solutions to these issues were effectively implemented. m

CLIENT’S COMMENTS:

“They listened to our instructions (the brief) and understood our requirements, kept us informed through the planning and set up stages and were receptive to our input throughout.. We are very pleased to say that the evening was superb and hailed a resounding success by all concerned.” – Julian Farren-Price