Are you registered? You’ve got to be in it to win it at WVC’s WowMinster showcase

With all things glistening at this year’s WVC annual showcase, the best of Westminster is waiting to be discovered with 34 fabulous venues to explore and an array of spectacular prizes to be won.

On Monday, 29 October, between 6.30-9pm, BAFTA 195 Piccadilly is the place to be for event professionals wanting to unlock the infinite potential of Westminster’s finest venues.

Whether planning a conference, exhibition, wedding reception or more, there’s a multitude of hosting opportunities in Westminster’s hidden gems, from fashionable townhouses to luxury hotels and beyond.

Guests will be invited to collect 12 stickers from different member venues throughout the evening for the chance to win a series of amazing prizes, including:

• Six tickets to the Alexandra Palace Fireworks Festival from Cavendish Venues
• Ice Bar tickets for two with drinks from Church House Westminster
• Dinner for two with a bottle of house wine in Art St Kitchen Restaurant, Doubletree by Hilton London – Westminster
• Champagne afternoon tea for four with views over the Thames & London skyline in the Faraday Centre Brasserie, IET London: Savoy Place
• Afternoon tea for two aboard one of Bateaux London’s vessels
• Overnight stay for up to four people at Imperial Venues’ 170 Queen’s Gate two-bedroom apartment in South Kensington
• Lunch for two with a bottle of wine at Brasserie One Restaurant, One Great George Street
• An M&S hamper donated by 110 Rochester Row
• Dinner for two with a glass of champagne at 8 Northumberland Avenue

Westminster Venue Collection celebrates finalists in The London Venue Awards

Westminster Venue Collection is wishing the best of luck to eight of its members, who have reached this Friday’s final of the London Venue Awards.

The eight venues – National Gallery, Institute of Contemporary Arts, One Great George Street, Prince Philip House, QEII Centre, RIBA, RSA House and The Royal Society – will be joining fellow event professionals at the sparkling awards ceremony being at the Hurlingham Club.

With a panel of 30 judges deciding on the category winners, plus bronze and silver awards winners, the London Venue Awards recognise excellence and exceptional achievements by venues in London.

Three member venues strengthen their teams with key appointments

This month Westminster Venue Collection members Church House Westminster, IET London: Savoy Place and London Transport Museum have announced new appointments.

Marina Papadopoulou has been appointed business development manager at Church House Westminster. Originally from Greece, Maria who has 18 years’ experience in the events industry, joins from City Hall where she headed up the event sales for the iconic GLA building on the South Bank.

IET London: Savoy Place has promoted Tom Bennett to business development manager to drive new business at London’s leading STEM venue for the Institution of Engineering and Technology.

Previously the venue’s conference and banqueting duty manager, Tom brings almost a decade of hospitality experience working in proactive and reactive event sales roles, which also include The London Eye and the Barracuda boat.

Meanwhile, London Transport Museum has appointed Lauren Eagle-Allen to the venue hire team as assistant sales and marketing manager. Lauren brings experience from an impressive career at Royal Museums Greenwich, complemented with strong leadership skills honed at the British Grand Prix.

The Royal Society unveils a brand-new look to its event space

The Royal Society has transformed both its City of London and Dining Room with an elegant new look.

Overlooking The Mall and St James’s Park, the magnificent City of London rooms are ideal for receptions and are also available as the catering space for your conferences in the Wellcome Trust Lecture Hall.

The new décor of the Dining Room makes it the perfect space for dinners of up to 120 but can also be used for lectures and meetings depending on your requirements.

To find out more, or to book please contact 0207 451 2612 or email venuehire@royalsociety.org.

RSA House Vaults are set to re-open following redevelopment

Following a nine-month renovation, RSA House has announced its Vaults will return for private events later this month.

Featuring high ceilings, dramatic exposed brickwork, an original stone road and snug alcoves, the Vaults, which were once used as riverfront warehouses for cattle, dairy products and wine, feature their own entrance, reception and private facilities.

The redevelopment has included a new banqueting kitchen, installed alongside dedicated caterer CH&Co Venues.

With several adjoining parts, clients can move from one space to another, creating a completely different set of spaces for their event. The Durham Street auditorium, fully equipped for presentations, seats up to 70 and the Vaults can house an evening party for up to 220 guests.

The Vaults create a fabulous backdrop and memorable atmosphere for any event – from a screening space and breakout meetings, to a Christmas wonderland or wedding.

To find out more or to book The Vaults, which reopen on 22 October, please contact 0207 7451 6855 or email house@rsa.org.uk

The QEII Centre is offering an exclusive seat at its chef’s table

The QEII Centre has teamed up with Square Meal to offer one lucky reader the chance to win a seat at its lucrative chef’s table.

Launched in October 2017, the six-cover chef’s table dining room looks directly into QEII’s busy kitchen, where under the guidance of head chef Jean-Michel Viala, formerly of the Dorchester, the team of chefs freshly prepare every dish for up to 2,500 delegates a day.

Jean-Michel has elevated the centre’s F&B offering, creating innovative and exciting new menus for everything from intimate dinners to dazzling parties and evening events.

The winner and their guest will enjoy a private three-course tasting with Champagne, canapés and paired wines, usually only available to event planners booking an event at QEII, as well as a tour of the kitchens and a personal welcome from Jean-Michel.

To enter the competition click here

RIBA welcomes young architects and south London music collective for charity fundraiser

RIBA’s Florence Hall recently played host to an extra special event raising vital funds for the Stephen Lawrence Charitable Trust.

Featuring south London music collective Steam Down, the annual event raises money for those who work to inspire and support young people from disadvantaged backgrounds to succeed in the career of their choice.

This year’s line-up, co-curated by RIBA and the [204] Design Collective, saw a panel of inspiring young speakers discuss the impact of the voice of youth in redefining alternative methods of architectural practice, followed by drinks, bowl food and the Steam Down performance.

The event highlighted the versatility of RIBA’s 66 Portland Place venue, which lends itself to informal, live music events as well as more traditional functions. Guests took full advantage of the mild September weather, lingering on the Florence Terrace to the sound of Steam Down’s saxophones.

Image caption: Brother Portrait and Nadeem of Steam Down, courtesy Ben Derbyshire

200 Years Putting Your Event First

Did you know Westminster’s One Great George Street encapsulates some of the longest-standing events professionals and a wealth of expertise in the events industry?

The investment the venue puts into its own staff makes for a dedicated, long-standing team resulting in excellent service levels and a high percentage of repeat bookers.

Take a look at what One Great George Street’s staff have been up to over their many years of service, as they celebrate 200 years of putting your event first!

By booking One Great George Street, you can always be sure of a great location, great value, great flexibility and, of course, a great team.

https://www.onegreatgeorgestreet.com/Special-Offers/200-years/

116 Pall Mall hosts Stories from Arabia fashion show as part of London Fashion Week

Stories from Arabia, a fashion platform of elite designers for emerging and established designers, took over the entire function floor of 116 Pall Mall during London Fashion Week.

The two-day build saw the production place a 23-meter-long catwalk in the Nash room that was used by nine designers and 30 models who presented their collections to 300 guests.

The adjoining Burton and Trafalgar rooms were transformed into backstage champagne lounges, stunning flowers make the most from the stately rooms.

8 Northumberland Avenue offers #EventProfs advice

No one can wholeheartedly say that the events industry is a stress-free place to work. Since 2009, there has been a 24% increase in the number of sick days due to stress, anxiety and depression!

This guest blog from 8 Northumberland Avenue includes some insightful advice for event planners on maintaining your wellbeing.

THE VALUE OF A HAPPY WORKFORCE

We cannot escape the fact that the events industry is people facing. Having a workforce that is enthused, impassioned and well looked after, will not just benefit your employee’s wellbeing, but the company as a whole. The events will be seamless, and clients will return for this pristine experience.

At our central London events venue, we value our own five-star service which we put at the heart of what we do. Establish what you expect your five-star standards to be and communicate this to your employees.

ENCOURAGE HONESTY IN THE WORKPLACE

You cannot set standards and expect these to be met without any feedback.

Everybody is different, so what causes stress to one person, won’t necessarily cause stress to another. Listen to your employees and accept that everybody has their own area which makes them uncomfortable.

ABOLISH THE BLAME CULTURE AND EMBRACE FAILURE

When things go wrong the obvious reaction is anger, however, this can be the most damaging. A leadership that is calm in situations of high stress, who will focus on improvements to be made rather than the negatives, will see long-term benefits.

Rather than blowing up, offer support and embrace failure. Worrying does not make something safer or mean that you care more. Instead learn through failure and put precautions in place so that the mistake does not happen again.

INVEST IN YOUR EMPLOYEES TO GIVE VALUE TO YOUR COMPANY

The most important element to maintaining wellbeing in a stressful industry is to invest in your employees. More training, rewards for success and investment in their development should be a top priority. In doing so, you will generate a workforce of brand advocates who believe in the company they work for.