Meet the Team: Matt Marsland

This week we get the pleasure of meeting Matt Marsland, one of our Corporate Account Managers. If you’ve booked an office Christmas party or a summer party you may well have dealt with Matt before. Either way, let’s learn a bit more about the man behind the parties.

How long have you been part of the Eventa family?

I started working for Eventa in June 2012 as part of the shared sales team, which was a great introduction to the company. When the position for Account Manager came up in 2014 I knew I had to apply and I haven’t looked back!

What is your favourite part of working for Eventa?

I would say the team! The Eventa team are all amazing and work so well together. I also get the opportunity to work on some really interesting events, meet some great people, and do the job I love! No two days are ever the same.

What is your background and experience in the events sector?

I studied events management at Leeds University which I thoroughly enjoyed! After leaving university I worked for a production company which specialised in Arabian themed events.

How did you get into the events industry?

I volunteered at a local festival when I left school and loved every minute of it, the events industry is so varied and exciting that there and then I knew this was the career path for me.

And what would you suggest to those out there who are looking to get into the events industry?

Experience is essential! If you’re serious about getting into events then I would suggest volunteering at every possible opportunity. Get in contact with your local charities and festival organisers, the experience you gain will be invaluable!

Don’t worry the easy questions are coming now; what is your favourite drink?

Oooh I’d say a gin and tonic, slim line if I’m watching the waistline!

What about your favourite canapé?

I went to an event recently where they served deep fried macaroni and cheese, they were divine!

What are your 3 top tips to ensure a successful event?

1. Listen to your client and their needs. Work with you client to get an understanding of exactly what they want to achieve from the day.
2. Plan, plan, plan! There is bound to be something that doesn’t go exactly to plan but keep calm and you’ll find a solution!
3. Work with trusted suppliers! Sounds simple but working with suppliers you can trust can make such a big difference and take away unnecessary stress!

Finally, what are the best and worst secret Santa gift(s) you’ve received?

Best gift, that would have to be a desktop basketball game!

The worst would have to an expired Pizza Express voucher (that wasn’t since I’ve been with Eventa!)

So now we know! Avoid gifting Matt expired vouchers and get him anything that can be played at his desk!

Event Review: L’atelier des Chefs Mobile Kitchen

Last month some of the Eventa team were fortunate enough to be invited to the launch of the L’atelier des Chef Mobile Kitchen, where an evening of foodie fun was waiting to be had.

The event was held at OXO 2 at the OXO Tower, so some delightful views of the Thames were on show for the team as soon as they arrived, before a glass of bubbles got things underway with a champagne reception and a chance for those present to mingle and network with their fellow foodie attendees. With almost 200 people in the venue spanning agencies, media outlets, and other venue employees, there was a buzz surrounding the evening that would simmer throughout.

Those that were perhaps a little wary about cooking in full view of others would have been put at ease straight away, that lovely London evening weather was in full force, and with a wide array of dishes being prepared nobody was going to feel left out. Sushi was a bit hit with Eventa, as everyone attempted to create their very own, with mixed results!

Joe getting his hands dirty

The foods on offer ranged from sliders (which went down exceptionally well with the team), cerviche, chicken tortillas, pork wontons, lemon meringue pie, and chocolate truffles to name a few. Overall, 12 foods stands provided the food and fun, especially with the Eventa team, who were made to feel welcome and thoroughly enjoyed their attempts at making various foods.

Finally, there were also two cocktail bars at the event, with mixologists on hand to educate those around them on how to create some classic cocktails, whilst also knocking up some nice twists on the tried and tested classics. Feedback from Eventa suggests that the cocktail which they unanimously agreed to be the best one they tried was the spiced apple martini. Sounds amazing and I want one right now.

All in all, L’atelier des Chef Mobile Kitchen’s launch event was a success! A grand evening in the capital that was made even better by some great food and the opportunity to network and chat with some interesting people from within the industry. Most importantly, the team learned something, and that was that a mobile kitchen is an excellent idea for a party.

I’m hoping they try and force the issue on the entire company for our next Christmas Party!

Sound like fun? Book your corporate event with Eventa, call us on 01273 225 078 for more information.

Meet the Eventa Team – Sian Nannan

This month on the Eventa blog we get to meet Product Executive, Sian Nannan!

Sian works tirelessly behind the scenes to ensure that we offer one of the widest selections of office Christmas parties, summer parties, and team building events you’ll find. Let’s find out more…

How long have you been part of the Eventa family?

I joined the Eventa team in June 2012 as their product and package executive, managing all of the venues featured on the website. Since then I have become a team leader to the shared sales and administration team.

What is your favourite part of working for Eventa?

The best part about with for Eventa, is working with our amazing team. We work well together, combining each other’s skills and experience. I would say that it is a rarity to choose to spend your free time with people you have spent the last 8 hours with, but we do!

What is your background and experience in the events sector?

I have been working in the events industry for the last 5 years. While studying Events management at Greenwich University I worked for a marketing and promotions company for club nights in the west end. This was great experience for me, as I managed all of the celebrity public appearances, administration and PR.

How did you get into the events industry?

I always said to myself that if I had to do a job for the next 50 years, it would have to be a job I enjoyed and found exciting. I decided to study events management at Greenwich University, where I gained a lot of experience and knowledge of the events industry and knew it was the career for me. I decided that I wanted to work in my home town of Brighton, as I didn’t fancy the commute to London every day! Luckily the job for Eventa came up as I completed my last exam and I have been here ever since!

And what would you suggest to those out there who are looking to get into the events industry?

Get as much experience as possible. There are so many elements to running an event and I think unless you try them all, you don’t know which one best suits you. University allowed me to try different roles and take on different projects. While carrying out a project to propose an exhibition proposal to Lush Cosmetics, I realised that account management was what I wanted to do. My current role at Eventa sees me manage all 500+ of the venues that we work with and advertise on our website, and I love it!

Don’t worry the easy questions are coming now; what is your favourite drink?

An Amaretto Sour! It tastes like sour Haribo!

What about your favourite canapé?

We attended the London Summer Event Show a few weeks back, where I had a mini lobster slider! It was delicious!

What are your 3 top tips to ensure a successful event?

Plan, plan and plan some more. My uni Lecturer once told me ‘If you fail to plan you plan to fail!’ If you cover all basis of an event during the planning stages and have contingencies in place in case anything goes wrong, you should have yourself a successful event!

Finally, what are the best and worst secret Santa gift(s) you’ve received?

The best secret Santa I got was a wedding diary, the year I got engaged! I haven’t had any really bad ones, but someone in the office once got a bag of McDonalds Ketchups! No joke!

Event Showcase: Enchanted Garden

It seems as though summer might finally be on its way! I spent this weekend at my mum’s house and ventured into the garden soaking up the sunshine, and it felt amazing!

My mum started to get into her gardening a few years ago now and the garden looks amazing, with lush green grass, pretty potted plants and birds, there seem to be a lot of birds but it’s got a very magical feel, and it got me thinking about our summer party themes, and the Enchanted Garden in particular!

The Enchanted Garden is such a great theme for summer and can be created in any venue, inside or out. There are so many different spins you can put on it; you could create a whimsical garden or woodland with fairy lit trellis arc way decorated with ivy and blossom, white picket fencing and topiary bay trees with fairy lights, or you could add an ancient Greek/Roman feel with Roman figure pillars and classical columns.

In previous years the Enchanted Garden has proven to be a really popular theme and we’re expecting this year to be no different! My idea of an Enchanted Garden would be set in an outside space with a marquee (as you can never completely rely on the wonder that is the British weather!), as guests arrive they will be treated to a refreshing glass of Pimms and served canapés on human canapé trays before dining on a delicious hog roast. I love a sweet treat so I would have to add a waffle or popcorn kart too!

The décor would consist of a LOT of fairy lights (you wouldn’t believe what a difference clever lighting can make to your event), ivy and blossom, topiary trees and birdcages and toadstool seating. If you’re going for a formal seated dinner a white birdcage decorated with a rose garland and LED candle would look fab!

Take a look at what is included in a sample package for the Enchanted Garden:

  • Pimms welcome drink
  • Canapés served on human canapé trays
  • Hog roast
  • Popcorn kart
  • Character actors (fairies and/or mystical creatures)
  • Trellis arc way decorated with ivy blossom and fairy lights
  • 20m of white picket fencing
  • 2 x sets of toadstool seating
  • 2 x white 90cm birdcages decorated with ivy, roses, blossom and LED candles
  • 2 x white cast iron benches
  • 8 x topiary bay trees with fairy lights
  • 8 x genko blossom trees with fairy lights
  • 6 x flamingos
  • 2 x Venus di milo statues wrapped with ivy
  • 3 x 10m bluebell forest backdrop with framing
  • 15 x LED uplighter bars

Interested in this summer party for your office or company? Find out more and enquire today.

Roof garden summer parties: Perfect for 2015

If you’ve been tasked with finding and arranging a top class summer party, be it for clients, staff, or members, you’ll soon discover that the options out there are vast and varied. So where do you start? Well, considering the time of year is a good start, so let us say you are required to arrange a party in summer, for around 100 guests in London.

Where would you consider holding this event? Do you know if those involved would be happy with the venue? If you’re asking yourself these questions then we’ve got just the suggestion for you; roof parties!

Now while the initial thought of a roof party might be far from the corporate or reserved event that you require, but when you think of the plus points to holding an event at a roof garden you’ll soon realise there are very few reasons NOT to!

First of all, the weather can play a part. Now, this is probably the only element you can’t influence, but if you get some fantastic clear skies for your roof party in the middle of July you’ll be laughing. You can pair the weather with the views as well, two subjects that are perfect for small talk and breaking the ice during any event’s early hours.

Staying in people’s minds is incredibly important if you’re entertaining clients or customers, and holding your event at a roof garden as opposed to a nondescript hotel function room could make all the difference. Your rooftop party will stand out.

Fortunately for you, Eventa can arrange parties at some of the best roof top locations in the capital, why not have a look at just a few of the party packages we can offer:

Summer at the Roof Gardens – includes exclusive venue hire, a three course sit down meal or summer BBQ, giant garden game, and more – Prices from £83.50pp excluding VAT

Summer on the Terrace – includes exclusive hire of the Penthouse Level bar, and choice of a summer BBQ or canapes, and more – Prices from £25pp excluding VAT

Summer Soiree on the Roof – includes exclusive hire of the venue, unlimited beer, wine, and soft drinks, full event management, and more – Prices on enquiry

If you require a bespoke event we can also assist you there, just email Eventa today with your requirements and one of our skilled party planners will be in touch to help you plan the perfect party, no matter what the occasion may be.

Eventa’s New Year’s Resolutions for 2015

With Christmas so very close to us now we’re all looking forward to relaxing and recharging with friends and family before coming back with bigger and better plans for Eventa in 2015; but what will our New Year’s Resolutions be once the festivities are over?

Yes it’s that time of year again; where we look back on 2014 and realise we never stuck at the things we said we’d do at the beginning of the year, so we choose another set of resolutions to not live by in 2015!

Only joking, this year is the year we actually will stick by our New Year’s Resolutions, we promise!

New Year's Resolutions 2015

The usual ‘go to the gym more’ will probably apply to all of us if the stories of fantastic family feasts in previous years are anything to go by, but there are also some good ones in there from the Eventa team.

So, without further ado, here are our New Year’s Resolutions for 2015:

Alex – To start the gym again (I KNEW THERE WOULD BE ONE! – Lee)
Alice – To visit Edinburgh, I’ve always wanted to go so 2015 is going to be the year I make it there!
Sian – To eat healthily (more so than I already do)
Joe – To stop biting my nails!
Beth – To stop spending so much money on lunches
Abbi – Get fitter, woo yeah!
Kate – Every year I enter to do a charity physical challenge, despite always injuring myself! In 2015 I’d like to raise over £500 doing a Triathlon, with the swim part in open water. Best get training straight after Xmas eh?!
Megan – To go swimming once a week
Matt – To start cycling to work
Me (Lee) – To make at least one person laugh every day

How will we all fare in 2015 then? Only time will tell!

Eventa: Highlights of 2014

We planned parties all year just like we always do, however some of the events and moments of the year that really stood out for us happened away from the party circuit.

Here are five of the stand out moments for Eventa in 2014:

The Virgin Fast Track 100 Award

A day with Sir Richard Branson

It was an incredible honour to be named in the Virgin Fast Track 100 List for the second year running in 2013, an incredible feat for our company.

The owners of each company named in the list are invited to attend an event the following year, and May 13th saw our CEO Rob Hill and Director Nick Shuff rubbing shoulders with other like-minded entrepreneurs.

You can read more about the event and a short interview with Nick here.

Charity Fundraisers

Bob Marley cake

We also held a number of charity fundraisers throughout the year, as we find them to be a great opportunity to do our bit and help out whilst having some fun. The highlight of the year for me was probably the cake pictured above, which myself and my colleague Richard made for the Macmillan Coffee Morning. We didn’t win the ‘Best Design’ award which means the results were quite obviously fixed. We also did our bit for Red Lippy Week too.

Making Cocktails

Drinked Inn

Everyone loves a competition, and a competition where you are required to create your own cocktail? Sign us all up right now. Unfortunately for Eventa, we couldn’t enter this competition as it was our own! That’s right, we opened the DrinkedInn for business and received some fantastic entries, with the remit being that the cocktail had to represent the entrant’s job as best as they felt it could. The winning cocktail was worthy of winning the cocktail making masterclass that was the first prize!

Office Romances

office

No, we aren’t celebrating an actual Eventa office romance, instead we released the results of our survey that looked into office romances and believe me when I tell you the results were eye opening in places! You can see the full results here.

Halloween

Halloween Eventa style

‘Nuff said.

That was just five of the stand out moments for Eventa in 2014, and we’re hoping to have plenty more just like these in 2015. Be sure to enjoy the ride with us!

The Colour Lab Christmas Party

For Eventa, the beauty of providing parties for offices and companies throughout the UK is that we’re able to offer such a variety of styles and evenings, we strive to offer something for everyone.

Old Billingsgate Vaults

A perfect example of this is The Colour Lab Party, held in the simply amazing venue that is the Old Billingsgate Vaults in Central-East London. While the party itself features everything you would expect from a festive celebration, namely dinner, drinks, and dancing, it’s the venue that really sets the party apart from the others.

Found under Old Billingsgate near London Bridge, the vaults offer a simply unbeatable venue for your festive celebrations, where exposed brickwork along with low ceilings and impressive arches combine and create a cosy yet spacious atmosphere for everyone to enjoy. Although the vaults are underground they are plenty big enough for parties, with space to relax and sit back on sofas, while the second floor basement is perfect for those of you who enjoy a bit of a boogie!

Eventa at the Vaults

The Vaults offer enough space to enjoy a sit down meal as well, with 21,000 square feet available. If you want to provide a celebration or festive party to remember then you’ll want to book The Colour Lab, a party awash with colour all evening, which becomes even more impressive in a space such as the Vaults.

You can book the Old Billingsgate Vaults exclusively for your party, and in doing so you’ll get the perfect party package for Christmas.

A pre-event menu tasting session will allow a select few to know exactly what the meal will taste like, and with unlimited beer, wine, and soft drinks included in the price nobody need worry about breaking the bank once they’re here. A sparkling wine and cocktail reception should get things off to a nice start, and with coffee and mince pies following the food you’ll ensure that everyone is fed, watered, and feeling incredibly sated.

The entertainment also brings an air of fun and happiness to the proceedings, with both a party band and a disco DJ providing the aural entertainment well into the evening.

Put simply, The Colour Lab at Old Billingsgate Vaults ticks just about every box needed to ensure an enjoyable and successful festive party. Want to know more about booking the Vaults? Just take a look at this party package, where you can even send us a direct enquiry. Go on, make Christmas special this year!

Summer Party Review: Sky Bar, The Grange Holborn

Following on from our event review last month we’ve got another Eventa summer party to show you, again taking place in London, this time in early August in the Sky Bar at The Grange Holborn.

The Grange Holborn is a stylish five-star hotel close to London’s West End, close to the British Museum, Covent Garden and of course, Theatreland. The location of the hotel makes it easy to reach by public transport, being close to Russell Square and Holborn underground stations, as well as multiple bus routes.

The event was a casual affair, a simple rooftop BBQ with drinks and some entertainment for everyone in attendance. With beautiful unobstructed views across London, the Sky Bar is perfect for summer events, and when the weather is great the views just add an extra dimension to the proceedings at this penthouse-level bar and restaurant.

The weather may not have been perfect, but everyone enjoyed the event and it would’ve taken a lot more than a bit of rain to dampen everybody’s spirits!

After guests were greeted on arrival by Megan and Abbi (Eventonians), they were given their drinks vouchers and a welcome glass of Pimms for a drinks reception that allowed everyone in attendance the opportunity to mingle and enjoy the beginning of the event.

The event featured a small awards ceremony for the client, which was enjoyed and observed by all in attendance, even Megan and Abbi as they oversaw the evening. Following the awards, speeches, and a raffle draw it was time for the BBQ meal to be served to everyone.

The BBQ offered exactly what you would expect to see at a BBQ buffet, there were plenty of choices with vegetarian options well catered for, including mixed vegetable kebabs and vegetarian burgers. Thai-spiced chicken kebabs and sun blushed & coriander beef burgers were the order of the day for the meat options, as well as a number of different salads and desserts to enjoy too.

The rest of evening was full of fun and enjoyment, with everyone drinking, dancing, mingling, and even playing some of the large garden games, which included giant Connect 4 and giant Jenga. These games are always guaranteed to provide plenty of fun for all in attendance, perhaps it’s something worth considering for your next office party.

Music was provided courtesy of everyone in attendance, as there was a docking station and auxiliary cable available for the client to control the music and ensure that everyone was making the most of their evening.

Everyone in attendance also received drinks tokens on arrival, allowing them to be redeemed at the cash bar against a number of drinks on offer, and with the client also hiring a photographer for the evening there were plenty of photo opportunities throughout the night, which were duly captured.

Browse our full range of summer parties here.

New Party: The Festive Pub Explorer

Last week the Eventa team were fortunate enough to try our hand at one of our new team building parties, GPS Treasure Hunts! We took part in the Festive Pub Explorer Party around Brighton as four teams from the company took to the streets of the South’s best loved seaside town for an evening of questions, quizzes, tasks, and a fair bit of running around if we’re being honest!

The aim of the game is to explore the local area using the GPS-enabled tablet that is provided for your team. Once you’ve named your team and taken your team selfie you’re off, racing against the clock to get to the markers (hotspots) set out on the game app. Each task or hotspot will unlock when you get there (thanks to the GPS), so you really do have to explore to get as many points as possible.

So as the four teams scattered off in four different directions following their selfies it was game time, and as we were playing a shortened version of the game we had even less time to hit all of the hotspots and complete as many challenges as possible, hence all the aforementioned running around! The tasks are a mixture too, ensuring that things are kept fresh and interesting throughout the game.

You’ll find a number of ‘pub questions’, where the task at hand will require you to complete it in a pub (for instance, the image below was a pub question game where we had to find a newspaper and use the headlines to create our own.

Cyprus Mayoress Dumps Page 3 Girl to Delight of Crawley Romeo

With some of the tasks your creativity is tested, especially those that require photographic evidence that is later judged by your Festive Party organiser, much like the newspaper headline task above. The bigger the teams the better, as you’ve got more heads to work together when you get a task that requires the deciphering of Roman numerals, or counting the specific amount of letters in a pub sign. The faster and better your team works together, the better your chances of winning are!

The time limit is important; as you’ll need to be back at your predetermined meeting point (usually a pub) by a certain time or your points will not count! As all teams piled into the bar where the quiz ended there was just enough time to do the remaining pub questions and try and earn a few extra bonus points before the end of the evening.

The finale of the evening with a quick fire Christmas quiz on our tablets, with each team attempting to complete a general knowledge quiz and a Christmas-themed quiz within a set time. Following the completion of the quiz the scores are totalled, everyone gets to laugh at the team selfies and the various photo challenges before the winners are announced.

Treasure hunt winners!

All in all, the Pub Explorer Party is perfect for team building, and also for an evening event. You can find out more information about the party package and enquire about booking it for your company here, or you can view our other treasure hunt packages, A Secret Destination Christmas Party and A Ho Ho Ho Christmas Quiz.

Summer Party Review: Thames River Cruise

This summer saw Eventa plan, book, and run a number of events all over the country, including one particular party in the capital, London. This is no different to any other summer, however we thought we would showcase one of our more popular parties on the blog.

In July two Eventonians, Joe and Megan, oversaw a summer party for one of our best clients; a company that uses Eventa for both their summer and Christmas parties, every year. Clearly thrilled at the service Eventa provides and more than happy to continually give us their repeat business, our client decided on the Thames River Cruise for this year’s summer festivities, which we felt was an excellent choice.

The river cruise takes place on the London Eye Barracuda, a stylish cruiser that is capable of hosting over 200 guests. The Barracuda has a fantastic, art-deco inspired interior that features a mirrored bar and wooden dance floor, as well as plenty of comfortable seating throughout the upper deck. Since its first launch in 1977 the Barracuda has held parties for all manner of royalty and celebrities, including Elton John and Rod Stewart.

Our client’s event saw them arrive on the South Bank, with the Barracuda moored right in front of the London Eye. As we’re sure you’ll agree, this makes for an astounding setting to begin the cruise, as everyone steps onto the Barracuda in the shadow of the 443ft tall ferris wheel that sits on the South Bank of the Thames. After boarding it was full steam ahead for four hours of food, drink, music, fun, and sun for the 100 attendees on the Barracuda.

The party included a BBQ buffet, which was very well received and the perfect catering option for the evening ahead, allowing everyone to pick and choose when they ate, as opposed to a sit down meal on board (which is also an option).

Barracuda in summer

As you can imagine it was smooth sailing throughout the evening (sorry about the pun), with everyone enjoying the buffet, sharing drinks with friends and colleagues, and dancing away to the sounds of the DJ on the upper deck.

With the option to dance away on the top deck, enjoy the view of London from the boat, or to relax and chat away with everyone on the lower deck, the Barracuda Thames River Cruise is the perfect party setting for anyone looking to book an evening to be remembered.

When asked for their feedback on the party our client said simply ‘[it was] another super duper Eventa party!’

To make the occasion extra special you can even include a 30 minute champagne flight on the London Eye, allowing everyone to enjoy a glass of bubbly and a spin on the London Eye before everyone jumps aboard the Barracuda.

If you would like to enquire about or book the Thames River Cruise for your office party or festivities, send us an email.