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Issue 79 – November – 2017

Where to eat, meet and sleep in Byron Bay, Alice Springs, Geelong & Hawaii Your ultimate cheat sheet

Reward and Recognise Learn how to put together the perfect incentive program

WHAT’S COOKING? Hyatt Regency Sydney’s new executive chef


While your delegates are falling in love with our natural beauty, we’ll be working behind the scenes to ensure things run smoothly. New Zealand is easy to get around and boasts world-class accommodation, facilities and exhilarating activities in spectacular surrounds. Inspiration is right on your doorstep. Book your next conference in New Zealand.




6 – Going up, Going Down

Spice Loves

We say yes to metallics and no to foodwaste. Find out what else is trending.

New hotel and resorts openings, F&B trends plus incentive inspiration

14 – Flight Test November 2017

Spice puts Hawaiian Airlines’ new Extra Comfort product to the test

15 – Expert Corner Hear from AACB’s new president Karen Bolinger, ICESAP president Nigel Gaunt, and EVT Incentive Marketing’s managing director Mercedes Trautwein

20 – Incentives galore



We update you on what’s happening in the Whitsundays following Tropical Cyclone Debbie, plus bring you two exciting real world case studies

28 – City Snippets Wanna take a group to Byron Bay or Club Med? Here’s a cheat sheet on what you can add to your itinerary.



30 – Hot Spots We explore Geelong, Hawaii, Alice Springs and Wellington.

42 – Learn Cultural representative Donna Ingram educates us on the intricacies of a Welcome to Country

50 – Last Word



Anthony Bastic of AGB Events talks in-depth about putting together the Parrtjima Festival in Light in Alice Springs.  3


Hats off to you!

Bonnie Tai Editor Managing Director Managing Director Simon Grover Simon Grover Publisher Publisher James Wells James Wells Editor Editor Bonnie Tai

Bonnie Tai Managing Editor Managing Editor James Wilkinson

James Wilkinson National Sales Team National Team Katherine Sales Ross, Charlotte Marshall Katherine Ross, Charlotte Marshall Head of Circulation HeadBlacklock of Circulation Chris Chris Blacklock ph 1800 651 422 ph 1800 651 422 Production Manager Production Manager Jacqui Cooper

Jacqui Cooper Production Assistant Production Assistant Rowena MacDonald

Rowena MacDonald Senior Designer Senior Designer Chris Papaspiros Chris Papaspiros

The opinions expressed by contributors and advertisers in SPICEby magazine are not The opinions expressed contributors necessarily those Foodmagazine and Beverage and advertisers inof SPICE are Media's management staff. not necessarily those oforIntermedia’s All material contained management or staff. in SPICE is copyright.

As I’m putting together this edition, it suddenly struck me that this will be the very last time that you will see my name appear as Bonnie Tai.You see, I’m getting married in February, and with that comes a new last name and well….a husband! While I’ve been writing about events for the last couple of years (you may remember seeing my name in such publications as Business Events News or Travel Daily), unlike our readers, I’m not an event manager or a PCO. I don’t plan events; I just have a steady stream of experts ready to comment on industry issues, and then I write about them. So with a somewhat theoretical knowledge of what it takes to organise an event, I thought perhaps that I’d be able to pump out this whole wedding planning thing out relatively quickly. Boy, was I wrong. Planning a destination wedding is hard. Sticking to a budget is hard. Figuring out the logistics of an event is hard. So I take my hats off to you ladies and gents, because your job is really hard. In this issue we are welcoming back former Spice Magazine Editor Emma Castle, who has officially returned from maternity leave on a part time basis. She has jumped right back into the deep-end, and in this issue she brings

to you an update on the Whitsundays post Tropical Cyclone Debbie, where readers will be updated on all the resort closures, openings and refurbishments affecting the popular business events destination (pg 20). She also chats to cultural representative Donna Ingram about the intricacies of Aboriginal custom and whether or not you should include a Welcome to Country in your events plan (page 42). This issue is also the incentives edition. We sit down with Gary Bender of World Corporate Travel who takes us through a recent incentives program where they worked with a high-end gym to come up with a rewards program for their most loyal members (page 22).You’ll also hear from EVT Incentive Marketing’s Mercedes Trautwein who has provided Spice Readers with a cheat sheet of sorts to refer to when coming up with the right incentive program for your team (pg 18). Finally, we’re brimming with the Aloha Spirit at Spice HQ right now after our recent trip to the Hawaiian Islands. The hot destination is simply bursting with amazing group activities and we’re so excited to bring you details of a few of our favourites on page 34. This will be our last edition for 2017, so we hope you enjoy the issue. See you next year! n

Spice Magazine Team Group sales and marketing manager Katherine Ross + 61 2 8586 6176

Sales and marketing manager

Senior Designer

Charlotte Marshall

Chris Papaspiros

+61 2 8586 6216


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SPICE Magazine is published by The Intermedia Group PtyMedia Ltd Food and Beverage (ABN 940 02581 836 82)792 292) Pty Ltd (ABN 163 41 Bridge Road, Glebe NSW 2037 ph: 02 9660 2113, fax: 02 9660 4419 ISSN 1832-7176 4 Spice November 2017

DISCLAIMER This publication is published by The Intermedia Group Pty Ltd (the “Publisher”). Materials in this publication have been created by a variety of different entities and, to the extent permitted by law, the Publisher accepts no liability for materials created by others. All materials should be considered protected by Australian and international intellectual property laws. Unless you are authorised by law or the copyright owner to do so, you may not copy any of the materials. The mention of a product or service, person or company in this publication does not indicate the Publisher’s endorsement. The views expressed in this publication do not necessarily represent the opinion of the Publisher, its agents, company officers or employees. Any use of the information contained in this publication is at the sole risk of the person using that information. The user should make independent enquiries as to the accuracy of the information before relying on that information. All express or implied terms, conditions, warranties, statements, assurances and representations in relation to the Publisher, its publications and its services are expressly excluded save for those conditions and warranties which must be implied under the laws of any State of Australia or the provisions of Division 2 of Part V of the Trade Practices Act 1974 and any statutory modification or re-enactment thereof. To the extent permitted by law, the Publisher will not be liable for any damages including special, exemplary, punitive or consequential damages (including but not limited to economic loss or loss of profit or revenue or loss of opportunity) or indirect loss or damage of any kind arising in contract, tort or otherwise, even if advised of the possibility of such loss of profits or damages. While we use our best endeavours to ensure accuracy of the materials we create, to the extent permitted by law, the Publisher excludes all liability for loss resulting from any inaccuracies or false or misleading statements that may appear in this publication. Copyright © 2017 - Food and Beverage Media Pty Ltd.

Upfront | Special Events Artist Mervyn Rubuntja from Iltja Ntjarra by photographer James Horan



he second annual Parrtjima – A Festival in Light opened in Alice Springs last month, illuminating the Red Centre over 10 nights. Parrtjima (pronounced Par-chee-ma) is the first Aboriginal light festival of its kind in the world. The name comes from the Arrernte group of languages. In Central and Eastern Arrernte ‘apateme’ means to have trouble understanding something and ‘pwarrtyeme’ means to shine. The event name suggests shedding both light and understanding on a subject. This year’s breathtaking program saw the majestic MacDonnell Ranges – a 300 million year old natural canvas – lit up with a series of new installations. The light display was set perfectly in sync with music by Caama Music, with vocals by Arrernte elder Peter Wallace. A new Festival Knowledge Program of events involving Aboriginal artists from the central desert region was also introduced this year. Curated by renowned First Nations creative director Rhoda Roberts OA in partnership with AGB Events and Aboriginal Artists across the region, the festival showcased the oldest continuous culture on earth and put the magnificent Aboriginal art and culture of Central Australia on centre stage.

We were excited to come together with senior Aboriginal artists in Alice Springs and bring new light to their vibrant artwork to inspire visitors to learn more about the rich culture of the central desert artists

A projection art piece presented at Parrtjima

“We were excited to come together with senior Aboriginal artists in Alice Springs and bring new light to their vibrant artwork to inspire visitors to learn more about the rich culture of the central desert artists who continue to paint country and keep our knowledge alive for future generations,” Roberts said.

“We were thrilled to deepen the experience for visitors through the new Festival Knowledge Program, which offers visitors the chance to meet the artists, hear their stories and learn about their artmaking.” Read more on AGB Events involvement in creating Parrtjima on page 46. n

Top five

most clicked 1


Melbourne’s longest

Sheraton on the Park Sydney to receive $40 million facelift

running hospitality group

The extensive

was acquired for an

refurbishment is

undisclosed sum.

Peter Rowland acquired by Capital Alliance




To usher in Sydney’s

InterContinental Perth City to debut new meeting suites

newest luxury property,

An all new meeting suite

Up to 8,000 Chinese

owner Jerry Schwartz

concept was launched

delegates will head to

scheduled for completion

gave away all 28 floors to

by the new property.

Cairns in 2019.

in early 2018.

raise money for charities.

Sofitel Darling Harbour to raise $1m for charities

Great Barrier Reef to host 2019 Amway China Leadership seminar  5

Upfront Metallics Gold, silver and bronze are all winners in our eyes (and the eyes of designers everywhere). Metallics are showing no sign of slowing down so make sure you add some

Naked water

shimmer to your decor.

See ya’ later plastic water bottles. Filtered water served in carafes or reusable bottles

Macadamia milk

is the way to go if you

You heard it here first, people. It’s the new

want to benchmark your

FODMAP-friendly nut milk, it works in coffees

F&B practices against the

and smoothies, and you can make it yourself or

likes of ICC Sydney and

order one of the new Australian-made brands

Melbourne Convention and

on the market.

Exhibition Centre.

Urban gardens From rooftop gardens to urban farms, many of the hottest venues are growing their own herbs, veggies and flowers onsite. The Farm in Byron Bay and Acre in Camperdown spring to mind but these sustainability-centric ventures are popping up everywhere.

Going up, going down Food waste Pay discrimination If you are paying the women in your organisation less than the men for the exact same job, you need to take a long, hard look at yourself. Sort it out because women won’t tolerate this any more (see: Lisa Wilkinson resigning due to a $90K pay gap between her and her co-host, Karl Stefanovic).

If you are still putting food waste into landfill, you need to rethink your business practices. Food is a precious resource that can be repurposed in myriad ways. The time to act is now.

The No vote If you voted No in the plebiscite, history will not be kind. We don’t want to get all political but this is a subject very close to our heart. We are yes people

Meaningless Christmas emails Dear <insert name here> is not a way to send seasons greetings. Personalise your communications or go crazy and send a real card. The warm fuzzy benefits of human connection is worth the hand cramp and weird envelope glue flavour. 6 Spice November 2017

in the best possible way.

Spice Loves | Hotels and Resorts

It’s finally here Sofitel Sydney Darling Harbour – the city’s newest internationally-branded five star property since the 2000 Olympics – officially opened in early October. The luxury hotel neighbours the International Convention Centre Sydney and offers 590 guestrooms and 35 suites. There are nine flexible meeting spaces to choose from, which are all fitted with the very latest in AV technology, and a dedicated in-house conferencing and events team to assist in all MICE related enquiries. For more exclusive meetings, Club Millesime Lounge, located on level 35, offers breathtaking views over Darling Harbour When staying, make sure to allocate some time to visit the Le Rivage Pool Bar and lounge around the infinity pool with a cocktail. You won’t regret it.

New year, new name, The 496-key Holiday Inn Resort Waikiki Beachcomber is set to be transformed into a Waikiki Beachcomber by Outrigger hotel. With the new name also comes a new look, with an extensive US$25 million refurb planned for the property to elevate it from an upper-midscale hotel to an upscale-tier property. The guest rooms will receive a refresh as well as the pool deck and public places including the lobby, corridors, elevator and hotel exterior. An all-new meeting space will also be added, which will be perfect for professionals and groups working in paradise. Renovations will be completed in phases for minimal guest disruption, with an anticipated completion in summer 2018.

Cosying up in Cape Town Get ready to add this spot to your

island in the marina itself, giving the

incentive bucket list. Situated at the

rooms a distinctive resort feel.

centre of Cape Town’s fashionable

The resort offers a range of luxury services

Victoria and Alfred Waterfront with views to Table Mountain is the 131-key One&Only Cape Town resort.

and serves as a gateway to the myriad experiences of the continent – from safaris to pristine beaches to the exploration of

Forty of the resort’s spacious guest

the world-renowned Cape wine region.

rooms and suites are set on an

adjacent lush green landscaped

one-and-only-cape-town-south-africa  7

Spice Loves | Food and Beverage


Forager A

t the age of 31, Joshua Askew is among the youngest at the helm in the kitchen across the luxury and upscale hotels in the region. Inspired to cook at a young age, he started his apprenticeship during his teenage years before spending his twenties working in kitchens across the country. Hard work earned him the Sous Chef role at Sir Stamford Circular Quay and Daydream Island Resort and Spa. However his break came in 2013 when he became the head chef at Swissôtel Sydney, and since then he has never looked back. Spice sits down with the man himself to discuss life, his career and what inspires him to create.

8 Spice November 2017

Can you tell us a little bit about your culinary career thus far? I started cooking the day after I finished year ten at the age of 16 and was probably the worst apprentice at the time, burning almost everything I cooked. Unlike most chefs, I didn’t have a family history of great cooks. However I was proud to have grown up in the everyday Australian family who enjoyed making favourites such as tuna casserole and barbequed bananas wrapped in bacon. My first job was in the local pub at the end of the street. After working for a year, I decided that I needed to learn more so I got my next job at a fine

dining Italian restaurant on Darling Harbour where I learnt that putting in the hard yards trumps talent. Working harder than all the other apprentices paid off when I was rewarded time with the head chef where he taught me his family recipes. Before joining Swissotel Sydney, I had the opportunity to work on Daydream Island resort. It was a challenging role however it was there where I grew the most too. As Executive Sous Chef looking over four restaurants, we were constantly battling crazy weather while getting only a delivery each week.

I had the opportunity to work on Daydream Island resort. It was a challenging role however it was there where I grew the most too What dish did you create to impress Swissotel during the interview/tasting process? I believe they made me create ten dishes! Being 29 at the time and having a completely different view on things, I had to convince them to let me have a go. Eventually they took a gamble and now two years on, we have never been better.

We understand you have a passion for foraging, can you tell us a little bit more about this activity and what drives you to get out there and find these amazing ingredients? Foraging can be a little addictive at times. I’m always looking around to see what’s new and growing. It really annoys my wife especially when we are running late and I’m still trying to climb a tree to pick something! I also grew up spearfishing with my father and uncles every school holiday and that has developed a great love for diving in me and being near the sea.

Tell us a little bit about your food philosophy. Keeping it simple. Using really good local ingredients and having a bit of fun while doing it.

Do you have a signature dish? It would have to be paperbark smoked salmon, warringal green puree, pickled beetroot and puffed wild rice. I was lucky enough to be a finalist in the Ora King Salmon awards last year with this dish.

What do you predict will be the hottest culinary trend this year? I think that native Australian cuisine is really starting to take off again but it is hard to go past the poké bowls popping up everywhere. n

Tis the season for cocktails! Award-winning mixologist Gorge Camorra has opened a 1920s prohibition style cocktail bar right in the centre of Geelong’s Little Malop Street (Read more on pg 32). Here he shares with Spice Magazine the recipe for one of his signature concoctions. Try it for yourself.

The Butter Bramble INGREDIENTS


666 Butter Vodka

Add crushed ice to a glass

Lemon Juice

Add 60ml of butter vodka and 30ml

Pedro Ximenez

lemon juice Serve with a syringe filled with 15ml Pedro Ximenez  9

Omkara Luxury Eye Masks Being eco-friendly doesn’t mean giving up luxury. These eye masks are made from Kimono silk or plain mulberry silk and filled with mulberry silk floss which has anti-ageing properties. Who knew? They can be gift boxed and customised, depending on your needs.

Gifts that

don’t take Are you looking for gifts that tread lightly on the earth? Read on for some fun new things that spread the love in a low impact way.

The Australian Superfood Co (TASC) Granola The Australian Superfood Co celebrates the flavours and nutritional value of native Australian bush foods by including them in their range of granolas. By increasing the awareness, accessibility and affordability of Australian native bush ingredients, TASC aims to increase demand.

Antica Trading liketyklikbox™ gift boxes The kliketyklikbox™ is a versatile gift box recycled from plastic soft drink bottles. Disadvantaged women are employed and taught the skills needed to create these boxes and cases, while at the same time learning business management, life and sales skills. 10 Spice November 2017

Spice Loves | Corporate Gifting

WILDfest vouchers Australia’s new luxury wilderness experience brand WILDfest specialises in artfully curated corporate retreats and offers packages/vouchers for their Canoes Champagne & Canapés exploration of a sunken forest habitat. Every WILDfest experience is individually tailored for an authentic encounter with ‘The Wild’.

Follow this @eddixonfooddesign Ed Dixon food design @av1_australia AV1 @showtime_events_ centre Showtime Events Centre  11

Cover Story

Food for


With 892 rooms, 3,700sq metres of events space and four onsite restaurants and bars, it’s suffice to say that it would take a hugely committed team and a whole lot of hard work to run Australia’s largest hotel. That’s why Spice Magazine went behind-the-scenes to meet Sven Ullrich – Hyatt Regency Sydney’s brand new executive chef – to learn more about the man behind the menu, and find out just what goes into running one of the busiest kitchens in the business. 12 Spice November 2017

Cover Story


hile executive chef Sven Ullrich is considered a new recruit at Hyatt Regency Sydney, he is certainly no stranger to the Hyatt brand. The German-born chef has spent nearly two decades working alongside the global hotel chain in properties across Australia, Tokyo, Hong Kong, Germany and the US. When asked what inspired him to take up a career in food, Sven replied that his mother was a major driving force. “I’d come home from school to a delicious cooked meal every day,” he reminisced fondly.“But one day she wasn’t there and I had to try my hand at cooking for myself.” He tried reproducing his mother’s famous spaghetti, but he said it just wasn’t the same. “The spaghetti was overcooked and the sauce tasteless”, he laughed. “And that’s when I realised that cooking required real skill.” That moment prompted Sven to take up an apprenticeship back in Hamburg Germany at the age of 15, which launched a career which would take him around the world.

PASSION PROJECT When creating menus, Sven says that he likes to work closely with local farmers to source the freshest, seasonal produce available. “I like farmers to tell me what they have ready right now. In the past I would tell them what I need. But now I ask ‘what is peak season? What is ripe?’” “You really want the ingredients to speak for themselves. If you have great produce, you don’t really have to do too much to it,”Sven says. “Our menus are written by the ingredients,” he explained.“It’s always this way and not the other way around.”

“Our menus are written by the ingredients; it’s always this and never the other way around.”

BON APPETIT Hyatt Regency Sydney’s fresh food philosophy is also evident in their events catering packages, with Sven telling Spice Magazine that no two menus are ever the same. “Back in the old days you’d get a menu and you’d choose from option A or option B.” “But we’re not set on our mains, they’re really just guidelines,”he says. And that’s good news for people with food allergies and dietary requirements as well, with Sven promising a contaminant-free menu. “A dietary requirement is treated like raw chicken – we keep it separate from everything else.” The kitchen has separate stations and gloves to deal with any special dietary requirements to ensure that cross contamination is avoided. “It’s also important to remember that the gluten-free guests aren’t necessarily vegetarians. They like meat too. So you have to tailor the menu for everybody.”

WHAT’S HOT? For those looking for a trendy menu item, chef Sven recommends trying poke, a popular raw fish appetizer served on the Hawaiian islands. “Poke is definitely a hot menu item right now,”he says. “The push for super foods is expected to continue.”


For gala dinners, cocktail events and large functions, Hyatt Regency Sydney offers two ballrooms that can accommodate over 1000 delegates each


There are also 21 meeting rooms available, many with panoramic views of Darling harbour


In-house audiovisual services are available, as well as high-speed Wi-Fi in all meeting rooms.


All meeting rooms come complete with multiple electrical, microphone and phone outlets.


The hotel also offers 892 beautifully appointed guestrooms and suites

Https://  13

Flight Test

Head in the clouds Spice Magazine took to the skies to test out Hawaiian Airlines' all-new Extra Comfort product. Flight Path: Honolulu to Sydney Class: Extra Comfort, 19H, Aisle Duration: 10 hours and 40 minutes. Frequency: Hawaiian Airlines flies daily from Sydney and thrice weekly from Brisbane to Honolulu. Entertainment: The inflight entertainment system includes a good range of movies and television shows to choose from to keep you preoccupied for the long-haul flight. There is a good mix of old classics and new blockbusters. Carry-on and Luggage Requirements: A generous free checked baggage allowance of 64kg (or two 32kg suitcases) is offered to all passengers.

14 Spice November 2017

Aircraft: Airbus A332 Extra Comfort Benefits: More legroom, priority boarding, personal power and USB outlet, complimentary entertainment pack and amenity kit. Onboard Amenities: Sleep mask, ear plugs, pen, comb, headphones, toothbrush and Colgate toothpaste, tissues, hydrating mist, lip balm and hand and body cream. You’re basically provided with everything you need to stay hydrated and comfortable on your long-haul flight. The Service: The flight crew was attentive, friendly and helpful. The meal service started right on time and we were all given the VIP treatment. During our flight there was a medical emergency on board, which saw the crew immediately jump into action and truly

display their professionalism. The passenger was resuscitated and all was well. On Board Dietary Requirements: On this service, a complimentary meal of green curry chicken was served to passengers. Currently, Hawaiian Airlines does not cater to specific dietary requirements, so it is recommended that gluten free, nut-free and dairy-free guests bring their own meals on board. Business Class passengers seeking a vegetarian meal are catered to and those travelling in Economy on all international inbound and outbound flights can now also make a request at least 48 hours prior to boarding. Final Thoughts: Whilst the product is not deemed a true Premium offering, the extra legroom goes a long way. Plus getting a tonne of perks for a fraction of the cost of Business isn’t a bad deal at all.

Expert Corner

Embracing Change I

n the past year MCB has merged to become a subsidiary of Visit Victoria. With change brings challenges, but mostly it provides new lessons and opportunities. Going from a small team to be a part of a larger entity has presented many tests in leadership for

“As AACB goes into its strategic planning the lessons I have learnt about change will be front of mind.”

Melbourne Convention Bureau’s (MCB) executive team. The news of our integration with Visit Victoria over one and a half years ago caused unease for some, and excitement for others. What we all knew to be true was that to successfully integrate, we needed to ensure that the MCB team maintained its sense of purpose and identity, and to keep up the job at hand, winning business events for Victoria. Transparency, open and regular communication and providing clarity of roles was crucial to achieving this. We also identified the need to ensure each individual understood the important role they play in delivering MCB’s strategic plan, and broadly their role in boosting the visitor economy, part of the overall remit of Visit Victoria. We acknowledged the value each person offered, demonstrating that we ‘had their backs’. This process has put me in good stead to take on the role of AACB President. As AACB goes into its strategic planning the lessons I have learnt about change will be front of mind. Business events operate in a continually changing landscape, and being prepared to embrace this will be a key focus for AACB. With a Federal election taking place next year this is vital. Disruption is the new norm and at MCB we welcome it, but more importantly we plan for it. With AACB the peak advocate of the industry our focus will be on assessing the current landscape, while establishing plans to adapt to its evolution.  15

Expert Corner | Incentives

Nigel Gaunt, president, ICESAP.

requirements and how they justify the spend by comparison to other forms of Sales and Marketing expenditure. My view is that incentive travel agencies offering travel reward programs need to know more about the sales and marketing rationale for a program. This is easily achieved at the discovery phase of taking a client brief to understand the underlying rationale for the proposed program. Focusing on the commercial considerations is important to winning and retaining a satisfied client. Once the commercial considerations are fully understood the agency travel fulfilment team can get down to

Incentive Programs: A travel product or new media? Incentive, Conference and Event Society Asia Pacific’s (ICESAP) president Nigel Gaunt believes that incentive travel agencies need to be better structured and equipped in order to keep marketing spend within the business events space.


ou can define the rationale for a customer’s investment into an incentive travel program as one or more of the following; • Rewarding past performance as determined by meeting or exceeding targets set • Recognising individuals, teams, departments or territories • Communicating a company’s future goals and strategies • Facilitating company leadership getting closer to top performing employees or channel partners • Meeting or exceeding a competitor’s incentive travel program offering Considering the above, one must consider some trips offer a great reward experience, but fail to measure up when it comes to being a platform for recognition or important business communications. Today, you can view a customer’s investment in an incentive travel program in the same way you can view any of their other sales and marketing expenditure: purely a return on investment decision based on commercial outcomes. So those who are involved from the agency and supplier side need to be more aware of the client’s overall

16 Spice November 2017

delivering a great trip experience for participants and hosts alike. In light of the above, there is a strong argument for agencies to develop an account management team who work with sales people to win business and ensure a client brief is fully understood before handing it on to the travel team concentrating their efforts with the trip’s program attributes, logistics and the costs. This division of responsibilities between account management and fulfilment of an incentive trip makes for a strong agency structure more able to fend off other marketing agencies offering the same client an alternative solution in digital, advertising or other media. The bottom line is this: our incentive travel agencies today are not only competing with each other, they are competing with sophisticated agencies vying for the same client’s marketing dollar. To compete we definitely need to be better structured and equipped. All types of Business Events growth has definitely come at the expense of other forms of marketing spend, we need to keep that marketing spend in the Business Events space! n

DI S C OV E R E N DL E S S POSSIBIL ITIES +61 2 9199 1814

Expert Corner | Incentives

Creating the right Incentive for your Team When looking at running an incentive program it’s important to get it right the first time, writes Mercedes Trautwein, joint managing director, EVT Incentive Marketing. Photo credit: Adam Weekes,


e often find that when the word Incentive pops up, everyone has an opinion on the perfect reward however not how to structure or pay for it. And why not, rewards are the flashy part. But spending the time on the strategy first will give your incentive the best opportunity to succeed. To help you on your journey to create an Incentive for your team, or greater organisation, I’ve collated the following Incentive Checklist.

Objectives and Measures Create clearly defined objectives for your program and revisit them every step along the way. Use your objectives to help create your measures — how and what can you use to improve those areas. Identify whom within the

“It’s better to review and adjust as you go than spend your entire budget on a program that didn’t quite hit mark.” business can impact on these elements and target the measures to them. Then review how long will it take to achieve these? In our experience a program needs 12 months to impact behavioural change and even then it can take a few rounds to embed. 18 Spice November 2017

Data Don’t pick measures you can’t track and report on. Correct, verifiable data or measure collection tools is the key!

What will Motivate them The reward options are vast, for example there’s: • Recognition and accolades • Team outings • Individual reward choices • Tickets to a sporting event • Aspirational incentive trips • Or, a personalised gift that you just know they will love My advice is to ask your team what would drive them, as you may be surprised, and ensure that the perceived reward value is worth their efforts. Next, work the numbers. The improvement in each measure needs to have a dollar value attached to it and from there you can model your budget.

Communication Some client programs we run are 18 months long and the key to keeping them fresh and exciting is a strong and agile communications plan. I recommend that you: • Give it a strong brand • Use clear and concise language • Create an emotional connection with the reward • Report on the performance at least once per month • Pick the right reporting channel — in-office announcement, posters through to program websites, eDMs and our personal favouriteProgram Branded Apps • Track Engagement — the more engaged with your program the better they will perform. Take these steps in the planning stage and then review as you go. EVT is always looking for continuous improvement in our client programs, and we review program performance, ROI, ROE and utilise our engagement algorithm to do so. It’s better to review and adjust as you go than spend your entire budget on a program that didn’t quite hit mark! n




San Francisco Travel Association, Los Angeles Tourism & Convention Board, Hawaii Tourism Oceania, Tourism Fiji, Japan National Tourism Organization, Madhya Pradesh Tourism Board, Abu Dhabi, Philippine Department of Tourism, Australian Convention Bureaux, New Zealand Conventions & Incentives, Business Events Australia, and many more

FOR BUSINESS | NETWORK | EDUCATION Confirmed Hosted Buyers attending AIME 2018: AMP, ANZ Banking, National Australia Bank - NAB, Suncorp, China National Pharmaceutical Group, Tesla, Minerals Council of Australia, Engineers Australia, IAG, ICMS Australia, Siemens Healthineers, Sanofi

The leading exhibition for the meetings, events & incentives industry in Asia-Pacific




SHAKEN, NOT STIRRED The Whitsundays, one of sparkliest jewels in Australia’s tourism crown, recently weathered a category 4 cyclone. Emma Castle checks in to find out how the destination is recovering.


ife in tropical Queensland is not without its challenges. The Whitsundays and neighbouring Airlie Beach were hit by Cyclone Debbie in March this year, a weather event that caused significant damage to several of the resorts, and a subsequent loss of business. Eight months later, things are looking up. Most of the damage has been repaired, a flurry of upgrades have been implemented, and a host of new hotels and venues have opened their doors.

20 Spice November 2017

Lorelei van Dalen from Whitsundays Business Events says,“The region has well and truly bounced back and most operators are back up and running including the famous Airlie Lagoon, which has had some refurbishments. “We also continue to see more exciting and unique venues joining the Whitsundays business events scene, including the secluded Paradise Cove Resort, which is an exclusive seaside property located at Woodwark Bay just north of Airlie Beach,

and Hemingway’s – a contemporary waterfront restaurant, located at the awardwinning Abell Point Marina. “Both Daydream and Hayman Island are undergoing extensive refurbishments, with Daydream Island Resort and Spa due to reopen mid-2018 and Hayman Island expected to open late 2018,”said van Dalen. Hamilton Island has also received some upgrades. Qualia’s ultra-luxe pavilions and the island’s gardens have just received a USD$150 million post-cyclone rejuvenation.

Case Study | Incentives Further afield, Long Island’s Bali-inspired Palm Bay Resort sustained only minor damage and is ready to rock for your next incentive group. This lesser known resort offers barefoot seaside luxury with its 23 accommodation villas and suites, as well as a main house, that is available for exclusive use. One key thing to note about this property is that it is self-catering, with supplies delivered daily. The advantage of this is that groups who want to cook for themselves, run cooking team-building events, or who want to bring their own Chefs, can do so without any conflict of interest with in-house food and beverage teams or minimum spend restrictions. Whitsundays Provisioning, the company that supplies the island, also supplies all the super yachts on the water so the quality standard is very high. From chilled Champagne right through to locally caught fresh seafood, you can get hold of just about anything, all delivered within 24 hours. In terms of new developments, Airlie Beach has just welcomed Heart Hotel and Gallery, a new 40-room boutique beachfront property. Located close to the Abell Point Marina, a jumping off point for the reef, as well as Airlie Beach Lagoon, this luxury hotel has been architecturally designed to capture the essence of a

tropical ‘Queenslander’ house and has high-pitched roofs, sweeping verandahs and timber cladding. The marina precinct also welcomes a new 104seat restaurant called Hemingway’s. With ocean views, coastal chic design and a local producedriven menu, delegates can unwind after a day on the reef overlooking The Whitsunday islands and Coral Sea. What many people don’t know is that The Whitsundays has more rooms on water than on land. With hundreds of high-end yachts servicing the region, visitors can do a four-hour sailing course and sail themselves, or hire a skipper and a Chef and sit back and take it all in from the deck. Tourism Whitsundays’ Business Events Marketing Specialist Lorelei van Dalen says, “The Whitsundays provides the perfect tropical playground for incentive groups. Delegates can explore the Great Barrier Reef and Whitsunday Islands onboard one of Cruise Whitsundays’ cruising vessels or sailing catamarans, on Whitsundays Sailing Adventures’ tall ship, Derwent Hunter, or Thundercat, a high speed vessel.” Also on the water, but without the need for sealegs, is Cruise Whitsundays’ fully catered ReefSleep experience where guests spend a night sleeping in a swag (a traditional Aussie camping bed) under the stars on a pontoon moored at the edge of the Outer Reef. Maximum capacity is 10 people but will expand to 30 people in the near future. ReefSleep is available for exclusive use with prior notice. n

What many people don’t know is that The Whitsundays has more rooms on water than on land. THE TARONGA CENTRE is nestled in the unique and spectacular grounds of Taronga Zoo, while overlooking the stunning views of Sydney Harbour. Your guests will be treated to a delicious fine-dining menu overlooking the harbour or surround by the lush rainforest around Taronga Zoo. Choose from over 11 unique spaces to host your conference, gala dinner, boardroom meeting or cocktail event.

To book call 02 9969 2400  21

Chocolate box members walk the Kokoda Trek with expert guides.

Witness the fitness

High-end gym Chocolate Box Training has teamed up with incentive experts World Corporate Travel to come up with a range of activities for their members.


orld Corporate Travel managing director Gary Bender says,“In 2016 Chocolate Box Training approached us to help them to execute a series of incentive programs for their gym members. Many members are busy corporates that want to stay fit, train hard, travel and compete with fellow members of the gym. We put together the travel logistics and Chocolate Box Training compose the training programs and onsite support to take the stress out of the trip for participants. This means they can focus on completing their goal.” Chocolate Box Training has a fairly different offering to your average gym. This Sydney-based business has a fully-equipped gym, boxing ring, yoga studio, weights room, functional fitness and strength area, group training, triathlon and cycling training centre, as well as in-house massage and manual therapist. Their training philosophy is: ‘Earn it. Word Hard. Embraced the process and enjoy the rewards. Because everything is that much sweeter when you’ve earned it.’ In order to motivate their clients, they decided to offer a series of ‘experiences of a lifetime’.“WEwill will get you fit and ready for the

22 Spice November 2017

ultimate travel adventures. While you train we will look after all of the travel and logistics. You will succeed with training and goals when you have an amazing destination to travel to and a definitive date at which you have to perform.” In order to meet this brief, the following programs were designed: Thailand (Nov 2016): Attendees trained to complete in Ironman 70.3, a first for many in the group. Papua New Guinea (Jul 2017): Members walked the historical Kokoda Trek with expert guides and being housed in local villages along the way. Sri Lanka (February 2018): Attendees will train to complete the first ever Ironman 70.3 in Sri Lanka composing of a 1.9km swim at the historic Galle Face, a 90km cycle through the Port of Colombo and a 21km run past some of Colombo’s most historical landmarks. Nepal (May & October 2018): Groups will journey to Mount Everest base camp together walking in the footprints of all who have failed or conquered the highest mountain in the world.

Case Study | Incentives These incentive programs are used to drive the following: • New memberships • Loyalty and commitment to the gym from members • Member engagement including support from other members not participating in the programs but still getting involved with some of the training) • Physical health – participants getting fitter and stronger. • Team work – groups all train and travel together so great team environment. No one wants to let the team down. • Increased merchandise sales of the gym logo and branding • Increased awareness of the not so privileged by supporting local charities of the programs destinations. Chocolate Box Training promotes these unique incentive programs to maximise their client interactions and help members to reach a variety of fitness goals as below: World Corporate Travel’s involvement currently includes: • Destination and venue research

• Itinerary planning • Management of both group & individual travel requests • Coordination of special travel requirements (such as traveling with sporting equipment) • Registration management • Booking ground transfers • Organising program enhancements including day tours or a well-earned dinner after completing the challenge • Issuing travel insurance  23


Dreamtime 2017 to be held in Brisbane messaging will focus on the story of a fun, connected and creative city that has already shown its credentials in hosting events including the World Science Festival and the G20 summit.

What can buyers look forward to?


eld every two years, Dreamtime is Tourism Australia’s signature incentive showcase designed to increase awareness of Australia as a premium incentives destination. For the first time ever, Dreamtime will be held in Brisbane this year. Spice sits down with Penny Lion, Executive General Manager Events, Tourism Australia for a quick chat on what buyers can expect from the upcoming showcase.

Not only will buyers get the opportunity to meet and do business with Australian industry, they will also get to see first-hand what makes Australia’s offering unique – our world-class venues and destinations, event delivery capabilities and our industry’s professional, innovative approach to creating memorable business events experiences.

Why was Brisbane chosen as the host city? Brisbane is going through a period of unprecedented development, which includes key projects such as the W Hotel, Howard Smith Wharves, and Queen’s Wharf that will deliver an inspiring destination experience for incentive planners and their clients. As Australia’s third largest city, Brisbane offers excellent international and domestic connectivity, accommodation options and incentive products as well as great weather year-round.

How many buyers and media are you expecting to attend? Business Events Australia will host 90 buyers and 20 business events media from the USA, UK, Greater China, New Zealand, Japan, South Korea, India, Indonesia, Malaysia and Singapore at Dreamtime 2017.

Can you give us a few clues to what will go into this year’s program? What makes Dreamtime 2017 different to previous years? Business Events Australia (BEA) is taking Dreamtime to Brisbane for the firsttime ever, so it’s a unique opportunity to showcase Brisbane and Australia’s latest incentive product offering to international buyers and media, and to bring the Australian industry’s event delivery capabilities to life. For Dreamtime in 2015, BEA positioned Adelaide through the ‘Welcome to our Home’ message, leveraging the connection between the people, product and places of South Australia including their food and wine story. For Brisbane in 2017, the 24 Spice November 2017

We’ve got some great experiences lined up for attendees to bring the destination and Australia’s business events offer to life, but we are keeping details under wraps for now to ensure maximum impact when Dreamtime finally takes place in December. However, we will be sharing some details about Dreamtime 2017 through our Business Events Australia newsletter and Twitter account @ MeetinAustralia and encourage everyone to follow the event through these channels.



Parrtjima - A Festival in Light

For more than 50,000 years, the stunning landscapes of Alice Springs have been the meeting place of an ancient culture. Be inspired by nature, an entrepreneurial â&#x20AC;&#x2DC;can doâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; spirit, amazing cultural experiences and unique venues. Add a taste of the unconventional to your next conference, incentive or product launch. Visit our website, email or call us for more information: Northern Territory Convention Bureau Tel: 1800 656 209 Email: Website:

Case Study | Incentives

The Italian Job Romina Izzo from Travel with a Twist created an Italian itinerary that would even make The Godfather happy. Read it and weep, friends.

26 Spice November 2017

Lucky delegates experience Venice on a recent incentive trip.


here are some things that are tricky to organise. For example, a surprise appearance by George Clooney. But sometimes fate smiles, which is exactly what the happened when Romina Izzo, founder and director of incentive travel company Travel with a Twist, arrived in Venice with her most recent group. She was hosting a group of 83 people; 40 participants and their partners, and her clients. The group’s arrival in Venice coincided with the Venice Film Festival and, as luck would have it, the town was crawling with celebrities. The group were walking down the street when they came across Mr Clooney. Needless to say, a few hearts were set aflutter. The eight-day itinerary,18 months in the making, started in Venice, moved on to Bologna, and finished in Florence in order to accomodate tours of the client’s Northern Italian factories. In Venice, the group stayed at The Hotel Daniele and The Westin Europa & Regina and enjoyed famous Venetian activities like gondola rides. In a very James Bond twist, Izzo even organised motor boat transfers from the airport to the hotel. From there, the group travelled on to Bologna and, while the clients toured the factory, their partners went on a day trip to Verona, visited Romeo and Juliet’s houses

and went shopping. The highlight of that night’s dinner was a live jazz performance, a lesser known local specialty. After that, it was onto Florence where there was another factory tour, while partners visited a parmesan cheese factory and a 100-year-old balsamic vinegar distillery. Lunch at the factory was followed by a surprise. Everyone in the group was given the chance to get behind the wheel of a Ferrari, supervised by a professional driver. After this heart-starting activity, the group then toured the nearby Ferrari Museum. Izzo says,“Everyone was totally blown away. These are the kind of experiences that you and I could never do outside of the framework of an incentive. This is the real benefit of investing in a trip like this.”

One of the highlights of the trip - not just for the participants but for the client as well - was a Tenuta di Artimino wine tasting and a luxurious picnic at Villa Della Minoza, a former hunting lodge owned by a high noble Italian family. “As everyone walked up the driveway, they thought we were just there for a wine tasting, but as they turned the corner, they saw the lawn set up with tables and picnic blankets. It was like something from Under the Tuscan Sun”, says Izzo. This was the moment the client said that Izzo had exceeded his expectations. Afterwards, he sent Izzo a note saying,“A big thank you to you and the Bassani team for helping us achieve our objective of our Italian Experience. Good planning and hard work resulted in an incredible week. I don’t think we could have wished for a better result overall. Until next time, thank you again.” Izzo says that it’s moments like that that make it all worthwhile.“I see the look on someone’s face - how excited they are - and I know that I’ve made that person really happy,”she said. She also said that she loves seeing her vision go from something on a project proposal to a reality. And the challenges?“Definitely the language barrier. Relaying your client’s vision and ensuring that the message is getting through can be stressful,”she said. “It’s challenging dealing with that, and also the different time zones. It’s can be hard to meet your client’s expectations when they are very high. There’s a component of education there when you have to explain that certain things are impossible to guarantee,”she said. n

The company: Romina Izzo, Travel with a Twist

The DMC: Bassani The airline: Emirates

The location: Venice, Bologna and Florence

The objective: Trip of a lifetime for 40 x manufacturing clients and their partners  27

Incentives | Byron Bay

When in Byron

Thinking about taking a group to the peace and love capital of Australia? Here are our top 8 picks on what you should include in your Byron itinerary.

Book a Kombi transfer What’s more ‘Byron’ than being ushered away from the airport in a vintage Kombi van? Family-owned Forever Kombis offers a range of hire packages to suit your corporate group. The vehicles have been lovingly restored and come in colours such as classic cream, chrome and white; sea blue and romantic red.

Take in the views at Fig Tree Restaurant Panoramic seaviews, rolling green hills and beautiful gardens – the views at Fig Tree Restaurant are amongst the best in the region. Arrange a sit down dinner beneath the stars or an intimate get together in the restaurant – a converted farmhouse – to sample the very best produce that Byron has to offer.

Book a scenic flight with Rotorwing Helicopter Services Is there anything cooler than a helicopter transfer? We didn’t think so. Rotorwing Helicopter Services, a family owned and operated business, offers a range of options for corporate clients including scenic flights over the Hinterlands and delicious lunchtime packages.

Harvest Newrybar Harvest Newrybar is a local institution. Located in the historic village of Newrybar in the Byron Hinterland, the establishment showcases fresh local produce sourced from the region’s best artisan producers and the restaurant’s very own gardens. Soak up the country charm while tucking into a meal made from both organic and foraged ingredients. Both private dining spaces and function rooms are available.

Cape Byron Distillery gin tasting From the family that brought you delicious Brookfarm Muesli comes a brand new uniquely Byron gin.You heard right – gin. Brookie’s Gin is the brainchild of Eddie Brook, the son of the healthfood brand Brookfarm. The brand new distillery is just a year old and is situated on the same piece of land that is also occupied by the family’s massive macadamia plantation. The botanically-infused gin is distilled using the farm’s very own native ingredients. Tours and private tastings at the distillery are available by appointment only.

28 Spice November 2017

The Farm Byron Bay Set on 80 acres, The Farm Byron Bay offers a unique paddock to plate experience for those not afraid to get their hands a little dirty. Embark on a behind-the-scenes tour of the farm and gain firsthand knowledge of the destination’s sustainable and ethical farming practices, and get up close and personal with the animals that call the farm home. Later, make sure you head to Three Blue Ducks Restaurant for a full-flavoured meal packed with nutrients. Exclusive hire of the restaurant is available for large groups, as well as a 12 metre Argentinean barbeque area for those looking for something a little different.

Say hello to the Byron Bay Business Events Bureau

Corporate Retreat at Newrybar Downs For an intimate corporate retreat, a visit to Newrybar Downs is a must-do. The boutique lodging is nestled at the end of a tree-lined drive and is situated in close proximity of Harvest Café , the Byron Bay lighthouse, beaches, restaurants and spas. The five bedroom property offers five tastefully-decorated bedrooms, two dining areas, two living rooms, a Bowling Green, swimming pool and relaxed cabana.

A new regional conferencing bureau has been set up to help businesses with their conferencing, incentive and business events needs in Byron Bay. “Byron is the perfect place to get conferencing delegates moving and motivated,”Byron Bay Business Events Bureau’s executive officer Jen Murphy tells Spice Magazine. “In Byron the outdoor activities are so good that you might have trouble enticing your delegates back into the conference room,”she says. Byron Business Events Bureau was formed and funded through a collaborative partnership between the NSW Government’s tourism and major events agency Destination NSW, Byron Shire Council, Ballina Byron Gateway Airport, Byron at Byron Resort and Spa, Elements of Byron and Flash Camp. The events bureau recently hosted a group of qualified Australian PCOs and buyers to the region on a three-day famil program, where they experienced the best the bay had to offer.

Let’s Go Surfing surf lessons Whether you’re an experienced surfer or a straight-up beginner, a group surf lesson with Let's Go Surfing comes highly recommended. Sessions are tailored to the corporate group’s specific level, with an emphasis on team building.

3 JULY 2018 THE ARGYLE, SYDNEY Events Uncovered is your exclusive opportunity to go behind the scenes of events, and discover the hottest trends in theming, venues, catering, audio visual, photography and much more! This free-to-attend event gives you the opportunity to learn about great new product, engage directly with expert suppliers and gain first-hand experience of the best parts of the industry in a face-to-face environment. There’s also a Talks Program with a line-up of industry through leaders delivering key insights on the event planning process.

For more information visit Brought to you by the team behind A LIST Guide and Spice inspiring creativity  29

Destination Crush | Indonesia

48 Hours on Bintan Island Retreat from the hustle and bustle of the big city and take your delegates on a wellness retreat to Club Med Bintan Island, located just a short ferry ride away from Singapore. This all-inclusive resort provides a wide variety of services and activities to keep your group inspired and entertained, as Spice Magazine’s Katherine Ross discovered. DAY ONE 8am

Yoga is a must-do experience on Bintan Island and the perfect way to kick-start your day. Located in a palapa hut overlooking the pristine white beach, attain mind-body balance as you practice yoga in this stunning setting. Pro tip: refresh with a slow pressed juice at the Matahari Beach Bar straight after to complete this holistic experience.

11am Feel the stresses of city living melt away and treat yourself to an aroma rich massage at the Asmara Spa. Perched in lush greenery, with expansive sea views and waves crashing

30 Spice November 2017

lightly at the beach below, Asmara Spa offers a selection of treatments inspired by the local traditions of the region. Hand-pick your own oils and allow yourself to truly switch off.

2pm Explore Indonesia’s underwater world with a snorkeling trip. Board the boat for a quick five minute ride to a secret location where the fish are plentiful – and yes we found Nemo!

6pm Feeling completely zen, we enjoyed pre-dinner cocktails at Panorama Bar, overlooking the beach and resort as

the sun set. Our favourite concoction was the gin fizz!

7pm Club Med is known for its themed evenings and we were lucky enough to experience White Night on the pool deck. With everyone dressed in white elegance, it was a great way to enjoy a meal and to take in the beauty of the resort.

8:45pm While you attempt to digest your al fresco dinner on the pool deck, you are then treated to an awe-inspiring dance and acrobatic performances at the pool side circus show.



Club Med sure knows how to throw a party, so make sure you attend one (or two). With different themed nights, let us tell you there is an ambience which you can’t quite get anywhere else. You will find yourself singing and dancing to tunes you didn’t think were imaginable.

We kept the fitness theme rolling and went to an Aqua Gym class next. What’s great about this experience is that it’s a great way to trick yourself into thinking you are taking a dip in the pool but the natural resistance of the water makes this a great muscle building and cardio workout.


Sunrise on Bintan Island is not to be missed. You will feel the serenity which will set you up for the day ahead. We loved starting the day with a swim in the ocean.

9am G.O Runner is another must try experience on Bintan, so don’t forget to pack your active wear. Explore and stay fit on exciting trails through the trees and famous Ria Bintan Golf Club.

3pm Time to explore the resort! There are plenty of activities to choose from. Try your arm at archery, stand up paddle boarding or the flying trapeze school. Lounge by the pool, explore the gardens, take a dip in the ocean, or take a quiet spot in the zen zone. The opportunities are endless.

6pm Time for cocktails and a twilight Trapeze show! There is nothing quite like watching these artists glide through the

air so effortlessly on a flying trapeze under the stars.

7pm We head to dinner at La Terrasse, a specialty restaurant where you are invited to feast under candle light. We enjoyed tuna tartar with ginger and shallot dressing and aged beef tenderloin with Forestiers sauce. Yum! n

Top 5 Singapore Highlights 1. Discovering the streets of Chinatown and hawker hall 2. Singapore Botanic Gardens 3. Gardens by the Bay 4. Marina Bay Sands 5. Eating Singapore Chili Crab in Singapore

DINING The Waterfall Restaurant is open for breakfast, lunch and dinner, serving up a variety of international food choices from Japanese to Indian to Italian. The theme changes daily. Snacks are available throughout the day at The Santaï, and late breakfast and lunch is available at La Terrasse. Looking for a cold beverage? The Matahari has got you covered. All dietary requirements are taken care of at Club Med, with gluten-free, vegetarian and healthy options available.

MEET Club Med Bintan Island caters to groups of all sizes and budgets, from conferences to incentive trips. Your guests will have a premium all-inclusive stay, complete with stateof-the-art facilities for their every need along with upgraded spaces for wellness and sports activities for team bonding.  31

I dream of Geelong

Just an hour away from Melbourne’s CBD lies Geelong, a charming port city surrounded by sprawling sea views, world class wineries and an emerging dining scene. A former hub for major industry – the region was once home to Ford’s first Australian manufacturing site – Geelong is in the midst of reinventing itself as both a leisure and business destination. Bonnie Tai hits the road to find out what’s new in the region and why it makes for the perfect spot to host your next event. Eat


Novotel Geelong Novotel Geelong is ideally positioned directly on the waterfront and in the heart of the city’s CBD. The property offers 109-keys,

Wah Wah Gee

many with sea views and sunny balconies. There is complimentary

Wah Wah Gee delivers Asian fusion cuisine at its funkiest. The

Wi-Fi; a 24 hour fitness centre; and an onsite restaurant serving up

waterfront venue is vibrant and colourful and the atmosphere

Mediterranean-inspired cuisine. Perfect for corporate meetings and

is electric. Indulge in a crispy chicken bun (or two) all the while

events, Novotel Geelong also offers five flexible meeting spaces and

enjoying a cocktail from the extensive mason jar cocktail menu.

an onsite team ready to assist you in executing the perfect event.

Wah Wah Gee can accommodate groups larger than 30 upon

Pro tip: Enquire about Novotel’s Inbalance Meetings program for a


super zen conferencing experience.



Terindah Estate Just 20 minutes away from Geelong is Terindah Estate, a beautiful

Jack Rabbit

boutique winery right on the water. The award-winning winery

Get wined and dined at Jack Rabbit, a quirky winery situated in

produces pinot noir, pinot gris, chardonnay, rose, zinfandel and

The Bellarine. Whilst the Jack Rabbit team is undoubtedly serious

shiraz, with its cellar door open for both private and public tastings.

about their wine and food, the vibe about the venue is fun and

Terindah Estate’s food philosophy is to create delectable meals using

completely unpretentious. There are two dining venues suitable for

only the region’s freshest produce; the fish is from Port Phillip Bay

group bookings onsite, each offering spectacular views of the You

and the mussels are from Port Arlington. For events, Terindah Estate

Yangs and the sea. The House of Jack Rabbit is perfect for private

offers a private dining room capable of hosting 200 guests sit down.

wine tastings and casual dinners; whilst the award-winning Jack

There are also plenty of scenic outdoor spaces that can be easily

Rabbit restaurant offers an amazing a la carte menu showcasing the

configured to tailor each occasion and group size.

region’s best produce.

32 Spice November 2017

Hotspots | Regional Conferencing Play

GolfBoarding at Curlewis Golf Club Curlewis is not your typical golf club. Here, the dress code is “hip” and the venue is proudly “anti-elitist”. If you want to wear a tee shirt or a cap indoors, the club is all for it. And we say ‘amen’ to that. While it’s entirely possible to play your standard round of 18 holes here, what draws the crowd in is its FootGolf offering. The rules of FootGolf are the same as in normal golf – complete 9 to 18 holes in the fewest possible number of kicks. The only thing different is the ball is a soccer ball and instead of a golf cart, you can ride around on surf riders (think segways crossed with surfboards). And we can attest it makes for an amazing teambuilding activity.



Sip cocktails at The 18th Amendment Bar The 18th Amendment Bar is a speakeasy hidden away on Little Malop Street in the centre of town. From the collection of vintage shakers which date back to the 1850s to the custom-made bathtub

Supatramp Unleash your inner child at Supatramp Geelong. With over 80 plus interconnected trampolines, dodgeball courts and a climbing arena, the team building possibilities for corporate groups at this playground are endless. There are also private rooms available onsite for hire for a quick motivating pow-wows before your group activity begins.


table paying homage to the illegal gin trade in the prohibition era; every corner of this venue lures you in for a closer look. The venue, run by award-winning mixologist Gorge Camorra, runs like a sit-down restaurant, with its capacity capped at 93. Camorra is a showman and puts a theatrical spin when serving up his signature cocktails. The Potion 2:11 cocktail comes highly recommended.



GMHBA Stadium The GMHBA Stadium (formerly Simonds Stadium) has seen a massive multi-million dollar refurbishment, revealing slick new

Little Creatures

function rooms, an inviting welcome café,

Taste your way through Little Creatures’

The National Hotel is Geelong’s newest

and improved amenities. Choose from an

hopping good repertoire of cold ones on

gastro pub, serving up modern Australian

array of different flexible spaces to hold your

a private tour of the brewery, and learn

cuisine with a twist. There are three levels

next event including the Presidents Lounge,

about the intricacies of brewing beer. There

to enjoy, each offering up a different

Social Club, the Centurions Lounge and

are two venues suitable for holding private

experience. On a warm day, wander up to

more. If you get in early you may be lucky

events on site; the White Rabbit Barrel Hall

the rooftop bar to enjoy the sun and take in

enough to get a glimpse of the regions

and The Canteen. During the summer

the sprawling city views. A private function

pride and joy – the Geelong Cats – training

months, Mystery Lane transforms itself into

room which seats 65 is also available for

for their next match as you sip on your

a buzzing craft market and supports local

larger groups.

morning latte.

artists selling their wares.

The National Hotel  33



With six distinctly unique islands to explore, the Aloha state reads much like a Choose Your Own Adventure book, as Bonnie Tai discovered.


Choose Magic

They say that once you dip your toes into the waters surrounding Maui, you are sure to return. Perhaps that’s why so many Australians are lured back to The Valley Isle time and time again after their first visit. The destination’s post-conference touring options and team building activities are endless, and a trip to this island paradise is sure to leave lasting impressions and fond memories.

Molokini Snorkel with Sail Trilogy There aren’t many places in the world where you can snorkel in a volcanic crater, but it’s possible in Maui’s Molokini. Molokini – one of Hawaii’s premier snorkeling destinations – is a partially submerged volcanic crater which sits

between the islands of Maui and Kaho’alawe. The crescent-shaped crater is home to a bounty of sea life, many of which are native to the Hawaiian Islands. Here it is commonplace to get up close and personal with gliding manta rays, slithering eels, sea curious turtles, as well as the humuhumunukunukuapu’a – the state fish of Hawaii. For corporate groups and events, Sail Trilogy offers private charter options. The spacious boats can accommodate an average of 40-50 guests and can provide catering as well as all the snorkel equipment. The Molokini tour averages around five and a half hours in length. An early departure is recommended to avoid crowds and for optimum visibility underwater.

Forage and feast at O’o Farm Situated in the lush forest of Waipoli in Upcountry Maui is O’o Farm, an authentic farm-to-table experience like you’ve never experienced. What makes O’o Farm unique is that the staff serving and preparing your meal are also the same farmers that tend to the crops, giving them a rare connection to the land. Guests partaking in the forage and feast tour are invited on an interactive exploration

34 Spice November 2017

of the farm which includes harvesting vegetables and salad leaves from the organic garden for the executive chef to prepare into a delectable lunch. The outdoor venue, which offers up panoramic coastal views of the island, can accommodate up to 100 guests for corporate functions, with the staff on site readily available to help you create an unforgettable experience for your group.

Relax and unwind at Heavenly Spa by Westin, Maui The wellness trend is on the up and up, and incorporating an element of it into your program is sure to leave your delegates rejuvenated and refreshed. Heavenly Spa by Westin, situated within the Westin Maui Resort and

Hot Spots | International Spa, offers complete spa buy-outs for corporate events. There are several relaxing treatments to choose from, including everything from massages to facials, to body treatments and salon services. For a truly authentic Hawaiian experience, we recommend the 60 minute Essence of the Islands aromatherapy massage, where you can choose from four natural essential oils made from core ingredients such as organic Coconut, Hawaiian harvested wild Kukui nut, Hawaiian macadamia or Big Island Kamani nut. After the treatment, guests are invited to enjoy the spa’s amenities such as the sauna and steam room, the whirl pool and beachfront relaxation lounge.

volcano is one of the most prominent peaks in the world. At sunset, the view from the summit is breathtaking. The sky – coloured in hues of orange, amber and gold – is a sight to behold. In fact, upon visiting, renowned American writer Mark Twain called the sunrise“the sublimest of all spectacles”. To witness a sunrise for yourself, you must book a transfer with an authorized concessioner. Haleakala Eco Tours offers an allinclusive experience for large private groups. Pro tip: Make sure you pack warm clothes as it can get cold at high altitudes. n

Start your day off with the Haleakala Sunrise Tour Haleakala – or house of the sun – is a dormant shield volcano that forms more than 75 per cent of Maui Towering at over 3,000 metres in height, the

Relax and Refresh

Fully lie-flat seating on flights to Honolulu You can now experience a new level of comfort between Sydney or Brisbane and Honolulu. With the unique, luxurious, island inspired design and our authentic Hawaiian hospitality, you’ll have arrived in the islands the moment you settle in. For more information or to make a booking contact: or

Hot Spots | International Mountain tubing with Backcountry Adventures.


Known as the Garden Isle, Kauai is the most ancient island in the Hawaiian chain. With its jagged peaks and verdant rainforests, Kauai’s landscape is dramatic and its beauty, unrivalled. If you want to get a taste of old world Hawaii, and immerse yourself in the Aloha spirit, look no further than Kauai. CHOOSE BEAUTY

Dining Gaylords Restaurant at Kilohana Plantation Estate Situated on a historic sugar plantation, Gaylords Restaurant is a must-visit. The restaurant is set within a historic estate which was once the home of English sugar baron Gaylord Parke Wilcox and his wife Ethel. Much of the original façade remains, and diners are invited to enjoy a delicious meal in an open-air courtyard with gorgeous views of the plantation grounds. It’s easy to spend the entire day at the Kilohana Plantation as there are a number of onsite activities to enjoy. You can hop on board the Kauai Plantation Railway and explore the 105 acre property; organise a group rum tasting at Koloa Rum Co; or explore the many unique shops housed within the manor.

Take in the beauty of Kauai with a scenic helicopter ride Absorb Kauai’s rugged coastline and 36 Spice November 2017

its emerald mountains from above on a scenic tour with Safari Helicopters. On the journey passengers are taken right up to gushing waterfalls and will fly in and out of lush valleys along the Napali Coast State Wilderness Park. The tour explores regions such as Mount Waialeale, Waimea Canyon and the Napali Coastline, and passengers on board are told stories on the rich history, myths and legends of the area by the pilot during the flight.

Tubing through former plantation lands with Backcountry Adventures The adventure starts on board a four wheel drive, where guests will traverse former Lihue Plantation lands with two experienced guides. Stops along the way provide perfect backdrops for a quick selfie and to marvel at the views of the mountains and Waialeale Crater. Perfect for all fitness levels,

adventurers will travel through dark tunnels, lit only by headlamps, while lazily floating down open canals. The tubing adventure explores the ditch and tunnel system which once irrigated vast sugar crops, but has remained unused since sugar production ended almost two decades ago.

Cruise the Napali Coast at sunset with Captain Andy’s Set sail along the stunning Napali Coast on a four-hour dinner cruise with Captain Andy’s. At afternoon light, the sunset colours the horizon in golden tones, which adds extra drama to the already stunning rugged coastline. Make sure you keep an eye out for frolicking dolphins, sea turtles and sharks, as wildlife are known to frequent the area. During the right season, it’s also common to spot migrating whales.

Hot Spots | International


Explore Hilton Hawaiian Village Hilton Hawaiian Village is a tourist destination in itself. The sprawling 22 acre oceanfront resort is comprised of 20 restaurants and bars; lush gardens and waterfalls; plus five pools including Waikiki’s largest super pool, and longest waterslide. For event planners looking to meet in Oahu, Hilton Hawaiian Village offers a huge assortment of indoor and outdoor venues. For large scale corporate events, the Mid-Pacific Conference Centre can accommodate up to 2,600 guests while the Rainbow Suite can hold intimate receptions of up to 270 pax. To really make the most of the picturesque resort, book an event outdoors on the Great Lawn, which can accommodate up to 1,600 guests for a banquet or luau and 2,000 guests for a reception. Post conference, delegates can also enjoy a range of onsite activities. These include cultural activities such as hula dancing and lei making or outdoor activities such as yoga or tai chi out on the green.

ATV movie tours at Kualoa Ranch No visit to Oahu is complete without a trip down to Kualoa Ranch. If the ranch’s endless vistas seems familiar to you despite not having visited before, it’s because the destination is a popular filming location for a variety of Hollywood blockbusters. Thus far, movies and television series filmed on the the 4,000 acre ranch include Jurassic Park, Godzilla, Hawaii Five-0 and Lost. Aside from its silver screen prestige, Kualoa Ranch is also a private nature reserve and is still used as a working cattle ranch today with more than 500 head of cattle calling the destination home. The best way to explore the various movie sets is by way of ATV. Choose between a one or two hour experience. No experience riding ATVs is necessary and group bookings are welcomed. n

Aloha MICE Managers Only Hawaiian business attire required With Hawaiian Airlines your clients conference starts the moment they step aboard. They’ll experience authentic Hawaiian hospitality on their non-stop flights from Sydney, Brisbane or Auckland to Honolulu. Or transfer to their favourite Hawaiian Island on one of 170 flights daily or onwards to 11 U.S. Cities. Included is a generous 2x32kg per person luggage allowance, inflight entertainment, meals and beverages. On our new A330 aircraft we offer Business Class fully lie-flat seating or your clients can upgrade to Extra Comfort seating. For more information or to make a booking contact:

Into the


Alice Springs, Australia’s spiritual centre, is a destination rife with magnificent national parks, Indigenous culture and picturesque sunsets. Its arid conditions coupled with the remoteness of the destination has bred true innovation, with Alice Springs home to such world-firsts such as the Royal Flying Doctor Service and the School of Air which services communities living in the outback.

38 Spice November 2017

Hotspots Stay

Crown Plaza Alice Springs Lasseters



Formerly Lasseters Hotel, the 4.5 star Crowne

Aboriginal Art and Cultural Workshop with Tinkerbee

Plaza is Alice Springs’ premier property.

Give your delegates the chance to immerse

The 205-key hotel offers sprawling views of

themselves into the local Indigenous

cater for events of all sizes; from intimate

the MacDonnell Ranges and backs onto a

culture with a an Aboriginal Art lesson

gatherings of 10 people through to large-

picture-perfect golf course. Onsite amenities

run by Tinkerbee. The arts organisation is

scale awards nights and conferences

include complimentary wi-fi, a business

owned and operated by Kumalie Riley, an

of 1,200 delegates. Its proximity to

centre, concierge services, resort pool, spa

Arrernte woman and respected elder from

accommodation and popular tourist

and sauna plus free use of mountain bikes to

Alice Springs. The workshop sees delegates

attractions make it a good place to base

explore the city. There are also a variety of

introduced to the ancient art of Aboriginal

your events. Off-site catering for special

food and beverage establishments on site

dot painting. Guests will be provided with a

events is also available. For a taste of the

including Tali, a modern Australian restaurant;

blank canvas, paints, brushes and various

outback, request an Outback BBQ or bush

Tempo, a cocktail and tapas bar; and Juicy

art supplies.

tucker canape catering package.

Alice Springs Convention Centre The Alice Springs Convention Centre can

Rump Bar and Grill, a casual eatery to grab a quick bite and a cold brew.




Ooraminna Homestead

Simpsons Gap

Henley on Todd Regatta

Welcome your delegates to a uniquely

Simpsons Gap is a nature reserve home

The Henley on Todd Regatta is the world’s

outback experience at the Ooraminna

to native black-footed rock wallabies.

driest boat race held on the sandy bed

Homestead. The family-owned property

The national park stretches 161km west of

of the Todd River. Locals joke that it is the

is known for its Wild Wild West Drover’s

Alice Springs and is an attraction steeped

only boat race that has been cancelled

Boy movie set and its picturesque dessert

in Aboriginal history and culture. There are

in history due to wet weather. The annual

backdrop. The 600 acre property is a

towering red rock cliffs, multiple scenic walks

event has been running for 56 years and

perfect spot to host everything from

plus swimming holes for those wanting to

has been labelled as the Territory’s most

gala dinners through to intimate cocktail

brave the cold waters.

iconic event. Groups are able to organise

receptions. It also offers a small selection

their own Henley on Todd Regatta, which

of cottage accommodation for those

makes for a great team building event. The

wanting stay onsite, as well as vast outdoor

race begins with two teams digging up the

spaces to host corporate retreats and team

materials to build their boats and ends with

building activities.

a competitive race for full bragging rights.  39

Hot Hotel:


ellington, New Zealand’s creative capital, is a city that surprises you at every turn. Its main drag Cuba Mall – named after an early 1840 settler ship – is an inner city treasure trove of vibrant street art; funky cafes (complete with mostly bearded and tattooed baristas); and world class dining establishments. There’s a vibe here that is electric. As if something completely unexpected but delightful could happen at any moment. And after spending just a few short moments wandering its many hidden laneways, it becomes clear almost immediately why Lonely Planet described Wellington as the “coolest little capital in the world” back in 2011. While Paris has the Eiffel Tower, and Sydney its iconic Opera House; the unpretentious Wellington is the proud owner of a bucket fountain, a kinetic

40 Spice November 2017

sculpture with a design flaw that sees pedestrians and onlookers splashed with freezing cold water on an almost daily basis. It is a landmark that is both equally beloved and despised by locals, but one almost unanimously respected because: ‘hey – It’s Wellington. What else do you expect?’

THE STAY – QT MUSEUM WELLINGTON The quirky vibes continue along the waterfront, where QT Hotels and Resorts opened their first New Zealand location earlier this year. Formerly the Museum Art Hotel, the iconic four-storey property was relocated approximately 120 metres down and across Cable Street in the early 90s by way of rail by former owner Chris Parkin, to make way for the construction of Te Papa Museum. Weighing in at almost 3,000 tonnes, the move was regarded as a feat of engineering at the time, and remains one of the largest tackled in the country to date. Today, QT Museum Wellington blends effortlessly into the Wellington landscape. Eclectic and daring, there’s a certain energy about the place that makes you want to explore every nook and cranny. Think you’re going to want to rush through check-in to raid the mini bar? Think again. The lobby walls are pretty much made

of art, with its bricks and mortar serving as more of a vehicle to highlight the pieces rather than hold up the structure. You’ll find yourself wanting to take in every painting, every sculpture, and every print. There’s also a life sized bull fashioned completely out of corn beef cans at the entrance, which serves as a premium spot for a quick selfie. The guest rooms also echo QT’s signature style, and it’s apparent that there has

Hotspots | Stays

been a huge amount of attention to detail committed into the fabric of the design. The mini bars are choc-filled with artisanal treats sourced locally from around the city. And the amenities are well suited to both leisure and business travellers alike (can we get a ‘hell yeah’ for rooms with Nespresso coffee machines?).

NEW AT QT MUSEUM WELLINGTON Hot Sauce, which officially opened September this year, is the latest addition to the QT Museum Wellington dining and drinking precinct.

SNAPSHOT – HOTEL FEATURES • There are four room types to choose from: Superior King, Deluxe King, Executive King Suite, Junior Suite. •A  ccess to an indoor heated swimming pool, sauna and spa pool to warm you up after a day of exploring windy Wellington. •A  n in-house fitness centre •B  oth harbour and city views are on offer •A  plethora of private dining rooms and seven event spaces are available for conferences and board meetings

Inspired by the hustle and bustle of its sister venue of the same name in Melbourne, Hot Sauce boasts a menu bursting with contemporary twists on traditional Asian cuisine think Vietnamese, Japanese, Korean and Thai). With executive chef Wylie Dean at the helm, the new venue is set to serve up everything from baos (Chinese buns) to sashimi; to dumplings and other oriental delicacies. “We wanted to create a space that paid homage to the various Asian cultures that have inspired the menu, whilst bringing in a sense of intrigue, intimacy and vibrancy. The contrasting textures; polished concrete, intricate fabrication and timber create a dynamic space that is bold but beautiful and honest.” Dean said. The new venue is intended to be a casual place to relax, meet friends or shake of a long day. n  41


WELCOME Should you include a Welcome to Country at your event? Emma Castle chats to cultural representative Donna Ingram about the intricacies of this Aboriginal custom.


hat is a Welcome to Country really about? Cultural representative and Wiradjuri woman Donna Ingram says that it’s not just about granting permission to be on the land, it’s also about offering protection. “Pre-colonialisation, you couldn’t travel through country without a welcome,” says Ingram. For Aboriginal people back then, she explains, it would be like waking up in the middle of the night and finding strangers in your house. “That’s not safe for anyone,” she laughs. Traditionally Welcome to Countries were about granting access to the land, as well as sharing information about where to find water and hazards to avoid.

42 Spice November 2017

Today, Ingram says they’re about respect and inclusion. “They [Welcome to Countries] not only make visitors feel welcome. It’s also about making Aboriginal people feel comfortable because they are so often in the minority,” says Ingram. So who can perform one and what does it need to include? The good news is that it doesn’t necessarily need to be an elder. Welcomes can be performed by authorised cultural representatives who have been given permission by the local elders. Ingram says that ideally a welcome would be performed in language but says that it’s not compulsory because so many older people were not allowed to use their language when they were growing up.

Learn | Culture

“It shows respect for Aboriginal people and it also provides an opportunity for people to listen, learn and appreciate different customs and traditions” What a welcome does need to include, however, is an acknowledgement of the local area and its people. In Sydney, for example, it needs to say, ’Welcome to the land of the Gadigal people of the Eora Nation, bordered by three rivers’. Ingram says it’s also traditional to introduce yourself and say who you are and where you’re from. After that, the only thing that needs to happen is that you need to use the word ‘welcome’. Beyond this, Ingram says that she always includes the following phrase at the end: ‘Always was, always is, always will be Aboriginal land’. She says, ‘I do this so people remember that we’re still here. Our culture is still strong. I’m promoting our culture and keeping it alive.” The average fee for a Welcome to Country is usually between $350 - $500 if you book directly with the person performing the ceremony. Booking agents add commission so you might end up paying more. To find a cultural representative in your area, Ingram says you can always contact the local council or any of the local Aboriginal service providers and they will put you in touch. Not all functions require a welcome but anything big like a conference should have one. Ingram says that even sporting matches have them now, even though they’re not televised.

“It shows respect for Aboriginal people and it also provides an opportunity for people to listen, learn and appreciate different customs and traditions,” says Ingram. As far as smoking ceremonies, dancing and didgeridoo players, Ingram says that it’s all about relevance.

“A smoking ceremony is a cleansing ritual so you have to ask yourself, ‘What’s the event and is it relevant to the place?’. My friend performed a smoking ceremony at East Sydney Technical College the other day because it used to be a jail and people died there,” says Ingram.“No one had ever cleansed it so that was very relevant.” n  43

HAPPY SNAPS Inlighten Photography is the brainchild of husband and wife team Dean and Rachael Bentick, who in 2002 took a risk and started the now hugely successful Sydney studio. From humble beginnings as wedding photographers, the duo have now carved out a place in the events sphere and established a passionate stable of photographers. Here, Co-Owner Rachael shares with Spice Magazine their hopes and goals for the future. Who started the business?


ean and I started Inlighten Photography back in 2002. We were only 23 and 25 at the time, and I think there was a big bit of lucky naivety in starting a business at such a young age. If I knew then, what I know now, I’m not sure I would have had the guts to start a business. But I’m so glad we did! There’s been a huge amount of hard work and long hours, but also amazing opportunities to travel the world and truly live

44 Spice November 2017

passionate and artistic lives that inspire us both together as a couple.

What services do you offer and to whom? We offer photography to a range of corporate clients including event photography; social media library photos; head shots for printed brochures and websites; product shots; advertising shorts featuring models and talent plus website photos for professional services. We also do shoot around 100 weddings

and 200 portraits a year, which is where the natural look and style of our photography has evolved from. Many of our corporate clients don’t have the budget for hiring professional models, so our experience working with “everyday talent” has been a big bonus for our clients.

What are the big trends in your industry? Advances in technology are really the cause of the biggest trends in our industry. Gone are the days when clients were happy to wait a week for their photos to be given to them. Now it is all about immediate posting of images on social media – usually while the event is still occurring. We shoot on the Canon 5D Mark IV and the Nikon D750, both of which have wireless capabilities. What this means for our clients is that we can take a photo at an event, product launch or conference, show them a selection of photos on the spot – and then wirelessly transfer their favourite images directly to their phone. We are even able

Insider to provide a light retouch on the spot if needed, and watermark with the company’s logo if needed. Social media has obviously also created a huge demand for photos that are both high quality, and in high volume. We find our clients no longer need one killer shot, they’re looking for a library of images that tell the story of their business, product or themselves, that they can release over time on social media.

What are some of the biggest challenges you have faced in the business? Finding amazing people is always one of our biggest challenges. While our business is based around systems, our success if based around our talented team of photographic artists. In today’s social media world, our client doesn’t expect us to simply capture what is happening. Today’s client expects us to make their event look amazing, world class and lust worthy. They expect photos that make everyone wish they were there. We have been incredibly fortunate to have a very stable team of photographers who have all been with us for over 5 years, lead by our Creative Director Dean Bentick. One thing that I love watching in the studio, is when the boys “show off” their work to each other. I constantly here the phrase “Check out the shot I got last night!” and I think being passionate as photographic artists and constantly striving to compete with their fellow team members to better their own work, is one of the key reasons for our success. We often find people wanting to one day be photographers will apply for administration roles with our company, and for this exact reason we keep these two worlds of the business very separate.

of their resorts as they opened a number of resorts and residences in the Seychelles, Sri Lanka and the United Arab Emirates. We were recently fortunate to be invited back for a new resort venture for the Small Maldives Island Co. for the launch of their newest island resort Amilla Fushi.

Where do you see your business going in the next five years? Going forward, photography is going to be more and more about 'wow' shots and instant delivery. People want to look amazing on social media and they want to do it now!

If you could tell clients one thing, what would it be?

What has been the biggest event you’ve worked on? The resort photography we did for Per Aquum Resorts and Spas spanned four countries across a period of 12 months. We photographed the opening of their their resort, Huvafen Fushi, in the Maldives, focusing on the guest experience and a creating a feeling of being there in the photos, rather than simply architectural room shots. Our experience shooting weddings really assisted in this shoot, as we created guest moments where the talent interacted, rather than just focusing on the position of the bed and pillows. The client was so happy with the result, we then went on to photograph each

“Your business is defined by the images that it presents online.”

Your business is defined by the images that it presents online. Photography is of critical importance in todays online world. So often, the photographer is one of the last things booked, and is based on who happens to be available, rather than who you believe will present your business, event or product in the best light. And services aren’t exempt from the need for amazing photos, if anything it’s harder for the client to see what you do, and therefore it is even more important. Once you have found a photographer you love, don’t be scared to give your photographer a thorough brief. Schedule a day of shooting and create a library of images that you can use on your website, printed brochures and socials for the next 12 months. This will also give you a chance to plan a consistent look across all of your photos - such as a touch of red, or mostly black and white - so that your photo library will be consistent with your company branding. n  45

Linda Pellaers, Patrick Benhamou, and Laurence Prevot at the Atout France at the Sofitel Wentworth lobby for Atout France’s sparking Champagne cocktail soirée.

Out About

The Alice Stampede enjoys gorgeous views from Ooramina Homestead.

Kelly Johnson, David Penilton, Wayne Mitcham, Tahnee Dobson, Jennifer Morkert.

A contingent of eight delegates representing Travel Oregon and Travel Portland were in Sydney recently for their annual sales mission with trade and industry.

46 Spice November 2017

Alice Stampede famil participants tuck into a delicious meal.

Spice Social Guests were welcomed on arrival at Hacienda's birthday bash with one of the bar's signature cocktails: Cayo Coco Colada – blanco rum, lime, coconut cream, mango sorbet and fresh pineapple.

Two hundred guests helped celebrate Sydney vista bar Hacienda’s first birthday this month.

Sofitel Darling Harbour officially launched with La Nuit, a black and white cocktail soiree, hosted in its luxurious champagne bar.

Bonnie Tai, Editor, Spice and Charlotte Marshall, sales and marketing manager, Spice.

Business Events Geelong

Inspiring Business Events

Connect with us... | 03 5244 7119  47


Get to know:

ANGELA SCIACCA Spice sat down with the new Asia-Pacific Incentives and Meetings Expo (AIME), Project Manager at Reed Travel Exhibitions, Angela Sciacca, to hear her insights into why exhibitors are drawn to AIME and what’s on offer in 2018. Q. Congratulations on your appointment to Project Manager. What are you most looking forward to in your new role?


’ve worked for Reed for over 16 years, and have been the Operations Manager for AIME since 2004. I’ve been an integral part of the show and I feel I know it inside and out. I’m thrilled to have the opportunity to lead the wonderful team in the run up to the 2018 event. Each year, I always look forward to seeing industry friends, and the chance to welcome and connect with new ones.

Q. As this is Reed’s last AIME - What can we expect at AIME 2018? The Reed team and I are determined to go out on a high and honour the relationship we’ve held with Melbourne Convention Bureau (MCB) and the Asia-Pacific business events community. We’ll be working hard to ensure we hand the reins over with a successful 2018 show. AIME is a cornerstone of the industry and, from my own experience I know that it’s all about having the time to make those vital connections that makes AIME so valuable. At the end of the day, AIME is all about creating strong business opportunities and connections in the events industry. In 2017, we had 50% of attendees who hadn’t attended before, I think this shows the dynamic and changing nature of our industry, and as event professionals the need to always keep ahead of the game. This year we have reinvigorated the design of the show floor to accommodate a new welcome feature area and an ‘AIME First Timers’ exhibitor area. The First Timers area showcases new prod-

48 Spice November 2017

uct offerings and industry suppliers to the AIME community, while removing the stress and logistic hassle new exhibitors can face. We have extended the opening hours, appointment times and educational offerings for Hosted Buyers. For Exhibitors, we have introduced a new webinar series so they know about all the great features they have access to, like Konduko – our digital lead generation partner, which we are offering free for exhibitors again in 2018. The AIME Knowledge Program will see a series of education seminars, drawing inspiration from our global ibtm events portfolio. Our Knowledge Program will deliver the latest in quality information and global intelligence – with a reinvigorated program of speakers and industry insights.

Q. From your experience why do people attend AIME? It’s the value of networking, meeting new people and staying upto-date on the latest trends, technologies, venues and inside information that AIME offers over two days – it’s equivalent to months of research and meetings. When time is so precious in business life, people are looking to find efficient ways to get what they need. At AIME, you can get all the contacts, leads, sales and information you need to set you up for the year ahead. This year we have already locked in leading national and international exhibitors, including Business Events Australia, Hawaii Tourism Oceania, Tourism New Zealand, ICC Sydney, P&O Cruises, TFE Hotels and Stamford Hotels and Resorts. AIME is where inspiration begins, 20-21 February at Melbourne Convention and Exhibition Centre. I hope to see you there! n

Last Word

Lighting up the outback Spice Magazine caught up with AGB Events CEO Anthony Bastic to talk about his role in putting together the second annual Parrtjima festival of light.


utting together Parrtjima, was no small feat. But for Sydney-based AGB Events – who are specialists in using the medium of light for creative story-telling – the brief was a dream. “I was contacted by Andrew Hopper, director of the Northern Territory Major Events Company, to develop a creative concept that would celebrate Indigenous

Rhoda is an “absolute powerhouse” in the arts scene, says Anthony. “She is bursting with ideas and is always looking at new ways to share and tell Indigenous stories using as many technologies as possible.” Rhoda worked closely with AGB Events and Aboriginal artists and art centres from across the Red Centre to develop the festival program, with endorsement from

“It is our plan to make this light festival the largest and most significant Indigenous light festival in the world.” culture through light,” says AGB Events CEO Anthony Bastic. “My company specialises in creating and producing events that cross cultures and celebrate creativity and technology,” he says. “And Parrtjima is one of those events that speaks to [our] core attributes.” But Bastic wasn’t interested in curating the event, instead choosing to enlist the help of Rhoda Roberts OAM, a celebrated Indigenous art director, to curate the show. “It has been our intention from the very early stages of planning that I would not act as curator, but that I would share my knowledge that I’ve gathered over the years and hand onto the local community.” 50 Spice November 2017

the Parrtjima Festival Reference Group and ongoing consultation with a wider network of respected Arrernte persons. What resulted was a breathtaking illumination of the majestic MacDonnell ranges, a 300-million-year-old natural canvas and a series of new installations. But the end result did not come without challenges, explains Anthony. “As you can imagine, there are many challenges when deciding to light 2kms of mountain ranges such as the MacDonnell Ranges in Alice Springs.”

“Firstly, there is the sheer scale of creating a light show that stretches such an enormous length, coupled with lights in such a fashion that they will be able to viewed from a great distance and then be impressive enough so that the audience’s imagination is sparked,”Anthony says. In order to get the lighting just right, AGB Events took on a collaborative approach and engaged lighting experts to help them get it just right. “Positioning lights on the side of a mountain range poses enormous problems,

we engaged a lighting company from Melbourne and worked with designer Richard Neville to realise the vision of our curator”. When asked what his personal favourite art piece was at the show, Anthony points to a projection piece called Grounded. “This piece features artworks created by local artists and the images are projected onto the ground, the red desert.” “When asked what we can expect from next year’s show, Anthony replies: “Watch this space”. “It is our plan to make this light festival the largest and most significant Indigenous light festival in the world.” n

BUSI NESS or PLEASU R E? W hy choose? Combine the Hawaiian Islands natural beauty, diverse culture, year-round warm weather, and legendary aloha spirit with the island’s wealth of tourism professionals, and it’s easy to see why Hawai‘i meetings build attendance and achieve positive results.

Hawai‘i Tourism Oceania +61 2 9286 8935





Win a share of 1 million Velocity Frequent Flyer Points when you book your 2018 meeting or event at any participating TFE hotel across Australia or New Zealand* Find for more information email or visit

* Book from 13 September to 31 December 2017 for an event held from 1 January to 30 June 2018 and let us know why TFE Hotels is your choice of meeting venue. For full terms and conditions visit The Velocity Membership Terms and Conditions apply, vailable at

Spice - November 2017  

Spice magazine is full of fresh ideas and techniques for those who make events happen with first-hand advice on what’s working and what’s no...

Spice - November 2017  

Spice magazine is full of fresh ideas and techniques for those who make events happen with first-hand advice on what’s working and what’s no...