Exhibition stand design and build – how to make yours stand out

Simple shell schemes are great for your first trade shows and exhibitions: minimal cost, while you test out the consumer response to your company and/or brand. But once you know what and where you should be exhibiting it’s time to think bigger …

Brand it BIG

The first thing people see should tell them instantly who you are and what you do. If your logo isn’t wildly creative and exciting then think of a tag line that sums up your business or why you are better than your competition. And print it BIG! Shell scheme stands tend to have standard font company names making every company look the same, make yours bigger and better so it catches the eye of everyone walking past.

Visual Merchandising

A term more often applied to retail, visual merchandising is just as important at exhibitions and trade shows, whether your selling bricks or houses you need to put your best products in the lime light.

If you’re selling services or non-tangible products like holidays (we all understand you can’t bring Barbados to Earls Court) then it’s about making an impact in other ways. The hard part is often getting people on to your stand – catering and comfy seating are an easy way to appeal to consumers; a light bite canapé or a big plush sofa are a big temptation for the weary exhibition goer – once they’re in it’s up to your sales team to keep them there!

If you have physical products to sell then they need to be displayed well, something out of the ordinary e.g. hanging from the ceiling, will attract attention or create a bespoke display stand out of relevant materials or in the shape of something associated with your business … stuck for ideas? Contact our creative team for a FREE proposal suited to your products.

Leave a lasting impression

How many exhibitions have you left with a bag full to the brim of leaflets and business cards? And how many of those pieces of flimsy paper have you kept? Exactly.

Branded merchandise is a brilliant way to leave a good impression, we’re not talking about sticky message bugs though, there are a whole host of brand-able items that will have much more impact. If it’s not as obvious as golf course giving away golf ball shaped lip balms, then think about your brand message and the associations you can make with that.

Or better still, have something people really want. We all have logo mouse mats, so put next years calendar on yours and make it useful! Genuinely our most popular client giveaway is a world plug adapter – something business travelers will use almost daily meaning they see your company message daily too!

Need a little help giving your exhibition stands the wow factor? Effective Event Solutions can provide full exhibition stand design and build services, along with logistics, branded merchandise and staffing if required. Have a look at this case study from the Taste of London show.

Unusual Venues London – A ‘Party Fort’

Everyone’s been there, done that when it comes to traditional event spaces like hotel ballrooms and livery halls so it takes a lot to impress these days, if you’re looking for unusual venues London then we might just have found one …

Ok, so it’s not quite ready yet but it is certainly unusual! The Grain Tower Battery is a Victorian fort complete with barracks and gun tower, oh and just about the best address in the UK: No 1, The Thames.

Small inconveniences like a lack of electricity and running water don’t seem to have put off potential buyers, although the £500,000 price tag would halt most of us …

The fort lies off the Isle of Grain where the river Medway meets the Thames estuary, at high tide it is completely surrounded by water and only accessible by boat or helicopter. Built in 1855 as part of a chain of coastal defenses, The Guardian reports it’s modern day sellers have had interest from buyers looking to turn it into everything from hotels or homes to a recording studio or nightclub.

One such potential buyer is Minival events who have set up a Go Fund Me page in their pursuit of the fort as the ultimate party venue, check their progress here and invest £5 for lifetime membership (if their dream becomes reality). Good Luck guys!

Whilst we wait to find out the fort’s fate you can still contact us via Sales@EffectiveEventSolutions.com for other unusual UK venue ideas.

And if you’ve now got a thing for abandoned forts, check out an event we did in the old prison on Alcatraz Island 

Team building ideas – Try an animation workshop

Got a soft-spot for Wallace & Gromit or fond childhood memories of Morph? Then why not try your hand at stop-motion animation and boost team working relationships at the same time!

Coming together as an animation film crew you and your colleagues will work on skills in communication and creative problem solving to fulfill your film brief.

How many people can I bring?

These team building ideas work best for around 10-30 participants, working in 6 groups of 2-5 on 6 sets of equipment. Although it can be scaled up for larger groups or used in conjunction with other activities to allow maximum participation.

How Long does it take?

Workshops can be run according to your time-schedule, so this can be a full day out or an afternoon of fun after a company conference or meeting.

A one-day workshop (5-6 hours) would allow each group to devise an idea for their film, produce a storyboard, make models/characters and props using modelling clay and then produce animated films around 30-40 seconds long complete with titles, credits, music and possibly sound effects.

A half-day workshop (2-3 hours) would allow each group to devise an idea for their film, make more basic models/characters using modelling clay, producing animated films around 20-30 seconds long complete with music.

Where can I do this team building activity?

Wherever you like! We can bring all the necessary equipment to your office if you have free space for tables/participants, or Effective Event Solutions can source the perfect off site venue for you.

All equipment and materials are provided including Apple Macbook Laptops, Sony digital camcorders, lights, tripods, backgrounds, modelling clay and stop-motion/post-production software.

Each participant would receive a DVD copy of the animations produced, (sent after the workshop).

Contact us via Sales@EffectiveEventSolutions.com with your objectives for a FREE team building proposal. If you’d like to build (pardon the pun) a team building activity into your conference or meeting, we can take care of the full event for you!

Still looking for other team building ideas? How about ice-sculpting!

Event Catering : Creative Canapés

The Oxford Dictionary defines a canapé as ‘A small piece of bread or pastry with a savoury topping, served with drinks at receptions or formal parties’, but these days it can be so much more than that!

Canapés are the perfect catering solution for many events: A cocktail accompaniment at a product launch, a light snack at an exhibition opening, a quick way to circulate food on a conference break (avoiding those dreadful buffet queues!) the list is endless.

Event catering is also a great way to reinforce your brand identity, it could be something as simple as a themed presentation tray (pictured – wild woodland theme platter) or our chefs can create unusual flavour / colour / textured options to fit your event ethos.

To get your juices flowing, here are some tasty examples from the Summer 2014 menu in association with DeWintons:

  • Grilled Chicken Rice Paper Rolls, Coriander, Vegetables, Thai Dressing
  • Jerk Chicken, Avocado, Lime & Soured Cream
  • Yorkshire Pudding, Rare Roast Beef, Horseradish Sauce
  • Confit of Pork, Apple Puree, Quince Jelly, Rosemary Sea Salt
  • Smoked Duck, Orange Jelly & Spiced Sea Salt Skewer
  • Beetroot Gravadlax & Grain Mustard Butter Mini Bagel
  • King Prawn Skewers, Garlic & Parsley Mayonnaise
  • Seared Tuna, Wasabi, Pickled Ginger, Soy Reduction
  • Butternut Squash, Pine Nut & Dolcelatte Tart (V)
  • Summer Pea, Mint & Feta Crostini (V)
  • Roquefort Cheese, Caramelised Apple Chutney, Toasted Walnut Bread
  • Homemade Italian Sausage & Chilli Pizzetta
  • Grilled Tandoori Chicken, Onion, Mint & Cucumber Raita
  • Homemade Beef Keema Samosas, Chilli Chutney
  • Spicy Brown Crabmeat Cakes, Lime Crème Fraiche
  • Butternut ‘Arrancini’ Risotto Balls, Sage & Truffle Aioli (V)
  • Mushroom & Truffle Oil Pizzetta (V)

And a few to tempt those with a sweet tooth:

  • Toasted Pistachio & Raisin Fudge
  • Biscotti Crostini, Dark Chocolate Mousse, Confit Kumquats
  • Grilled Pineapple, Malibu Coconut Cream
  • Glazed Mango, Passion Fruit Cream, Sweet Brioche Croute
  • Salted Peanut Butter Brownie
  • Lemon Shortcake Biscuit, Vanilla Pastry Cream, Strawberry

Looking to shake up the food offering at your next event? Talk to us (email: Sales@EffectiveEventSolutions.com ) to see how our event catering will wow your guests.

Copenhagen conference hotels: The chic Bella Sky Comwell

Copenhagen is the capital of chic; from trendy design stores (check out the home-ware section at the city’s premium department store Illium) to out of this world culinary experiences (NOMA has been voted the world’s best restaurant yet again) there seemingly isn’t anything the Danish don’t do with style.

So it should come as no surprise that their convention / conference venues are not  soulless, dull event spaces as you often see elsewhere when looking for large scale event venues.

And Copenhagen conference hotels don’t come much cooler than the Bella Sky Comwell – a relatively new hotel with 812 designer bedrooms across 23 floors in it’s two architecturally fascinating towers.

Belly Sky Comwell is an integrated part of the Bella Centre (one of Europe’s leading congress and trade fair venues) so you can take your pick in terms of event space. The venue can hold up to 15,000 delegates at once, but smaller groups certainly wouldn’t get lost.

When arriving from the hotel, smaller groups have direct access to a range of boardrooms, auditoriums and smaller exhibition spaces. Here it is easy to forget the scale of the venue as your delegates won’t see or hear anything that is happening in the larger trade show spaces.

Your delegates can also indulge in stylish cuisine at the on-site restaurants or unwind with incredible views on the 23rd floor at Sky bar (pictured) a whopping 76.5 metres up!

Scandinavia’s largest hotel is very well connected; with a metro stop just a few minutes walk away and free shuttle bus from Copenhagen airport.

If you plan events in Europe then get in touch with the Effective Event Solutions team via Sales@EffectiveEventSolutions.com and we can find your perfect venue – FREE no obligation quotes!

Team building cookery classes for real foodies

Teambuilding cookery classes are seemingly everywhere right now. Your Team Manager might be a culinary novice if you know your way around the kitchen then a ‘how to …’ class could be a total bore.

Catching up with our friends at Hotel Okura in Amsterdam recently, we discovered they have added a new ‘Wagyu Beef’ class to their enticing list of restaurant workshops:

Team building cookery classes: Wagyu Beef

Hotel Okura serves Japanese, Australian, New Zealand and American Wagyu in many forms, all of their carefully created dishes are designed to highlight this incredible meat.

The Masterclass will teach you and your team all about Wagyu; how to prepare the different grades and cuts of the meat, it’s different origins plus what other ingredients and flavours to pair it with.

Chef de Cuisine Louise O’Hare will discuss the theory and offer a practical demonstration, after which you will prepare your own Wagyu beef in the style of Okura’s restaurants. As a team you can then enjoy the different dishes at Taste of Okura’s dining tables.

Team building cookery classes: Sushi

Okura’s sushi chefs will teach you how to cook rice correctly, how to slice fish, and finally how to prepare sushi. Then you can sit down as a group and enjoy the fruits of your labour with a little Japanese Sake to wash it all down! You will also be given recipes to take home and keep practicing your new sushi skills.

Team building cookery classes: Michelin standard

Okura’s two Michelin star restaurant Ciel Bleu will welcome your team to learn fine dining skills with their own chefs. Using the same top quality ingredients and techniques as used in the restaurant’s own menu, you will create a Michelin star worthy three-course meal. The workshop lasts 3.5 – 4 hours including time to sit down and enjoy the stunning meal you have created. Recipes are also available for you to take home.

Team building cookery classes: Teppanyaki

Hotel Okura also houses a renowned Teppanyaki Restaurant; Sazanka, where the chefs will let your group in on the secrets of the teppan; the Japanese griddle. The teppanyaki chefs reveal how you can make a teppanyaki meal at home, even without a griddle or teppan plate. The dinner comprises four courses and the workshop will last 3.5 hours in total, with all recipes provided for you to take home.

These workshops are available for corporate groups of 10-18 people, if you have a larger group then drop us a line on the email below and we’ll suggest some other great Team building classes for you.

If that’s whetted your appetite and you’re interested in booking these classes for your next teambuilding day and/or holding an event in Amsterdam drop up an email at Sales@EffectiveEventSolutions.com

If you’re in Amsterdam and fancy joining a public masterclass then click here for upcoming dates.

Homegrown Produce at London Event Hotels

Perhaps you yearn for the space (and most likely time!) to nurture a homegrown vegetable patch, or maybe you just appreciate the taste of ultra-fresh produce and local sourcing when you dine out.

Well, Corinthia London’s chefs feel the same, so they’re now growing tomatoes on the Hotel’s rooftop (pictured) and bringing diners a delicious new tomato themed, market stall menu at The Northall restaurant.

If you like the sound of The Northall’s Roast Cornish Lemon Sole, Tomato Jam and Slow Cooked Heritage Tomatoes with Sauce Vierge (trust us it’s mouth-wateringly good!)then check out the full seasonal market menu here.

For those with a sweet tooth you can find ‘homegrown’ (or should we say ‘homeproduced’) honey at both Lancaster London and St Ermin’s Hotel, where bees are thriving in their rooftop hives and producing delectable honey.

Lancaster London also play host the annual London Honey Show, pop over on Monday 6th October and while you’re there pop into the Island Grill to try a Honey Panna Cotta made with their own rooftop honey!

To find out more about St Ermin’s rooftop hives click here.

If you’re looking for catering with locally sourced ingredients or are interested in finding out more about London event hotels, then get in touch with us for a FREE, no obligation chat.

Email us: Sales@EffectiveEventSolutions.com

Black Tie Dinner – transforming an office into a stunning venue

With such a huge range of venues available these days it can be hard to know where to book. What happens when you have the perfect location but the venue is dull and uninspiring? You call Effective Event Solutions of course!

Our team have transformed venues all over the world (have you seen the event we produced on Alcatraz island?), so our creative managers took no time in getting to work on an open-plan office in Oxfordshire … check out the before and after photos on our facebook page to see the metamorphosis!

Transforming an office into a black tie dinner venue:

The Welcome Reception

With guests arriving at dusk we brought the building facade to life with giant illuminated tulips (other flowers available), traditional candle lanterns and some simple uplighters.

The guests were welcomed into the lounge area for champagne and canapés, chic styled furniture and our mirrored bar provided a relaxed atmosphere with just the woodland themed canapé trays (see the photos on our facebook page) hinting at what was to come.

The central part of the office was screened off with classic white draping and strategicaly placed uplighters to give the illusion of a hallway between the lounge and the dining hall. The hall itself was ‘closed’ upon arrival so guests had no idea what was behind the drapes …

The Dining Hall

Our woodland theme idea (the venue is surrounded by lush green lawns and towering trees) came to life when we draped the walls and ceiling, wrapped the pillars with faux trees and ‘grew’ branches across the ceiling with all sorts of stunningly coloured ‘wildlife’ climbing through.

With gasps of ‘Oh wow’ and ‘Amazing’ the guests entered through the room and were seated around candlelit wild moss table centres for a sumptuous three course dinner.

The Food: We designed a menu with a twist on classic British dishes, featuring smoked salmon, beef two ways and eton mess with mint powder for an extra dimension.

The After Party

The woodland themed room wasn’t the only surprise we had in store for the guests, after dinner they were invited through to the psychedelic night club to continue the party long into the night!

The Effective Event Solutions team pay attention to every little detail right down to the last tiny butterfly (see them in the tree canopy photos on our facebook page) so if you’re looking at transforming an office into a stunning venue then drop us a line for a FREE no obligation chat!

Email us Sales@EffectiveEventSolutions.com or call us on 01865 877 877

Unusual Venue in London : Dinner with 007

Ok so not quite with the great man himself (although you could always hire one of these dashing look-a-likes) but with his greatest vehicles and iconic pieces from the back catalogue of films. The Bond in Motion exhibition at the London Film Museum presents a unique opportunity to hold your event amongst these incredible pieces of film history.

The exhibition is scheduled to run until March 2015 and is the largest display of it’s kind ever staged in London; featuring over 100 original items from all 23 James Bond Films. If you’re looking for an unusual venue in London then this might just be it!

Located in the heart of Covent Garden, the multiple event spaces allow your guests to mix and mingle with unrivaled access to Bond pieces such as concept drawings, scripts, model miniatures and full size vehicles including gyrocopters!

Ideal for a variety of events from drinks receptions and dinners to conferences and bespoke celebrations, this wonderful venue is also available for Christmas parties so you can raise a glass of mulled wine to Mr Bond this festive season.

Capacities: Cellar One can hold 100 for a reception, 50 for dinner or 80 for a conference. Cellars Two and Three can hold 180 for a reception, 100 for dinner or conference. The main gallery is the largest space accommodating 400 for a reception or 300 for dinner.

The Effective Event Solutions team can offer a full package of event management in addition to booking this stunning unusual venue in London for you.

Give us a call on 01865 877 877 or drop an email to sales@effectiveeventsolutions.com to find out how we will make your next event a stunning success!

Find out more about the exhibition here

Incentive Travel & Luxury Event Hotel Opening Soon in BALI

Incentive travel is a great way to motivate employees, whether they need an extra push to hit sales targets, a ‘well done’ for outstanding work or just a little bonding time with new team members, there is literally a whole world of choice out there.

This week we’re looking at Bali; an island and province of Indonesia. Best known for it’s chill-out atmosphere, stunning beaches and colourful seasonal ceremonies, there is soon to be a new ‘must-see’ resort as Ritz Carlton opens a beautiful oceanfront property.

Built on a sprawling site of over 12 hectares with white sandy beaches and elevated clifftop settings, the resort will boast 313 oceanfront suites and villas amongst it’s lush gardens plus 6 restaurants, 2 bars and a whole host of event spaces when it opens in December 2014.

Things to do (with groups)

  • Visit Uluwatu Temple, one of the six great temples that guard the island, watch a traditional Kecak dance show with a spectacular sunset backdrop.
  • Create your own perfume at the fragrance lab on site at the Ritz Carlton Bali hotel.
  • Cruise the Indian Ocean – for group trips where partners are invited, a romantic champagne cruise can be offered too.
  • Visit a sustainable cocoa farm and end the day with a chocolate making workshop
  • Traditional Balinese activities such as a private healing or ‘Melukad’ (a blessing with water) can also be arranged for private groups.
  • Join the Ritz Carlton chefs for a morning market tour in the village of Kedonganan, sample seafood fresh from the ocean and try your hand at cooking traditional Indonesian dishes.
  • A day in the Ritz Carlton spa is also a must!

When to go. Bali experiences two yearly seasons of monsoon winds: the southeast monsoon, brings dry days from May to October and the northwest monsoon brings rain roughly from November to April (peaking around Jan/Feb)

Festivals. Galungan (meaning ‘when the Dharma is winning’) occurs every 210 days, the Balinese celebrate this as they believe the deified anecestors of the family descend to their former homes. Nyepi (or Silence Day) falls on Bali’s lunar new year (usually late March or early April) and is celebrated in complete silence.

Meetings at Ritz Carlton Bali
The hotel also has a range of meeting rooms, whether your trip includes a short breakfast meeting, a lavish gala dinner or a full conference programme you will be easily accommodated here. The ballroom seats up to 450 theatre style or 210 for a banquet plus 5 meeting rooms ranging from 50-72 theatre style or 40-60 banquet.

If you like the sound of this for your next event or incentive travel trip, then drop us a line via email sales@effectiveeventsolutions.com and we can personalise an itinerary for your company and your objectives.