The 2014 Asia-Pacific Incentives & Meetings Expo (AIME) Welcome Reception, held on Monday, 17 February and hosted by the Melbourne Convention Bureau (MCB), was staged at Birrarung Marr; an inner-city park positioned between Melbourne’s sporting precinct and the city centre.
Birrarung Marr is only a five minute walk from the city’s iconic Flinders Street Station and features captivating urban art, including Melbourne local Deborah Halpern’s two-headed Angel sculpture and the Federation Bells, which ring three times daily with different compositions.
Thanks to the imaginative expertise of Peter Jones Social Events, the Welcome Reception literally popped-up at Birrarung Marr’s Middle Terrace a few hours before the event, replicating Melbourne’s weird and wonderful pop-up culture.
A non-traditional event space with sweeping views of the city skyline, Birrarung Marr was transformed into a medley of all things quintessentially Melbourne to welcome more than 2000 AIME delegates to the city.
Upon arrival into Birrarung Marr, AIME delegates were immersed in all the vibrancy and quirkiness that exemplifies Melbourne’s unique culture.
Guests entered the event through a large arch flanked by energetic entertainers, fashioned as road workers with a musical twist.
The latest craze in Melbourne’s dining scene, mobile food trucks were dotted around the venue for delegate’s to pick and choose multi-cultural tasting dishes from. The site was also scattered with wheelbarrows, buggies and ice cream carts serving up many sweet and savoury nibbles for delegates to devour.
Balloons, stilts, break dancing and a street funk band made for an interactive and engaging evening, filled with excitement and surprises, which is exactly what the city is synonymous for; unpredictable, innovative fun and a discovery around every corner.
Guests were presented with an abundance of different food experiences showcasing Melbourne’s culinary creativity, including an assortment of the city’s best food trucks:
- Beatbox Kitchen – beef and vegetarian sliders
- White Guy Cooks Thai – vegetarian and chicken curry spring rolls with Asian slaw
- Taco Truck – fish, chicken and vegetarian tacos with chipotle, poppy mayo and salsa
- Smokin Barry’s – pork ribs, brisket sliders and pulled pork sliders
- Let’s Do Yum Cha – dumplings, dim sim and barbeque pork buns
- Trailor made – Fatayer (spinach and feta pie), Mezza (dips and bread) and calamari
- Gumbo Kitchen – Po’ Boy, mac n’ cheese and gumbo
- Bahn Mi Boys – lemongrass pork belly, zesty chicken and sambal eggplant
- Hoy Pinoy – barbeque chicken, barbeque pork belly and sweet pork sausage
- I love Meatballs – beef meatballs with mozzarella and chicken, pancetta and sage meatballs.
- Phat Brats – chilli fries and mini hotdogs
EPICURE Catering also served the best local produce from wheelbarrows, buggies and ice-cream carts, including:
- Cold canapés such as poached free range chicken, cranberry and pistachio lime mayonnaise, mini-cape seed loaf sandwiches; and pickled radish and beetroot tart with goat’s curd, watercress and candied walnuts.
- Hot canapés such us free range pork and spanner crab cake pineapple sambal with roasted peanuts and coriander; and tamarind braised lamb pies with mango and lime pickle and coriander.
- Grazing dishes such as crisp barramundi fillet and cucumber, nectarine, coriander and a hot and sour dressing; handmade potato gnocchi with cherry tomato and a mount zero kalamata olive and spinach ragout drizzled with basil puree; and spice-roasted free range chicken, grilled sweet corn, double smoked bacon, roasted shallots, coriander and sour cream.
- Sweet items such as chocolate and hazelnut lollipops; soft and crunchy ice-cream sandwiches; and icy poles.
Creative Entertainment Concepts was the mastermind behind the eclectic array of entertainment on show at the Welcome Reception, including:
Circus performers – bright flowered stilts whimsically roved the event and then lit-up their stilts as darkness descended.
Street performer – Andy Zap performed acts throughout the evening, giving guests the experience of Melbourne’s talented buskers.
Break dancing crew – delighted guests with a show of spinning, throwing and jumping and then some.
Balloon artists – roved the event entertaining guests with their artistic balloon creations.
The Funk Buddies – regaled guests with New Orleans street-style funk.
Disc Jockey – Claire Elliott, one of Melbourne’s finest young DJ’s, was on the decks rocking the party.
photo gallery by Vicki Jones
- More than 2000 guests enjoyed the 2014 AIME Welcome Reception
- More than 500 Hosted Buyers were in attendance
- More than 40 of the world’s media were present
- 6000 savoury canapés
- 4000 sweet canapés
- 4000 grazing dishes
- 10 food trucks serving 8000 tasting dishes
- 5000 glasses of champagne
- 4500 glasses of Mister Fox wine
- 3000 beers
Peter Jones Special Events
Peter Jones Special Events (PJSE) started over 20 years ago and has earned a reputation as one of Australia’s leading event management companies. PJSE specialises in public events, cocktail parties, award dinners, incentive events and product launches and knows that every event is special, whether it is a dinner for 20 people or a large scale gala for 4000 people.
EPICURE operates exclusively in a premium range of venues including the iconic Melbourne Cricket Ground, Melbourne Town Hall, The Hawthorn Arts Centre and ZINC at Federation Square. Market leaders in eco-friendly catering, EPICURE offers a fresh and dynamic approach to food and service. Menus are developed on a seasonal basis using the freshest local, environmentally sustainable produce, from known sources that are cruelty free. EPICURE is also renowned for outstanding off-site catering operations at many of Victoria’s major events such as the Melbourne Cup Carnival, Opera in the Market and the Australian Formula 1 Grand Prix.
Harry The Hirer
For over 30 years, Harry The Hirer has set the standard for creating innovative and unique solutions in the way of marquee and equipment hire for any party, event or exhibition. As Australia’s most reliable and experienced marquee hire, party hire, event hire, lighting hire and exhibition hire company, Harry The Hirer continues to bring its signature style, service and world’s best hire products to the party and event markets.