ESSENCE Festival Celebration at the People's Health New Orleans Jazz Market
The New Orleans CVB works with some of the best partners in the business every day. Along with several of these partners, we hosted an outstanding event in March welcoming the ESSENCE Festival sponsors. We want to once again thank our partners for making this event so successful and give you the opportunity to learn about the industry trends and new developments featured.
Peoples Health New Orleans Jazz Market
The new Peoples Health New Orleans Jazz Market served as the venue for this unique event. Sleek, bright and flexible event space allowed for a seated dinner along with a wonderful performance from the New Orleans Jazz Orchestra.
Q: We are all so excited to have a true home in New Orleans for Jazz Music. Outside of being the official venue for the New Orleans Jazz Orchestra, what kind of programming can we expect to see? For groups visiting New Orleans, how can they experience the Market, and what types of external events will you be able to host within the new space?
A: The Market is going to be a bustling, multi-use, hub of musical activity for the community. Thanks to many community sponsors and partners, the Market will host senior citizen activities, youth and family focused programs, as well as educational initiatives. The public is encouraged to stop by and enjoy the music, meet a friend or colleague, grab a cup of coffee, peruse the Jazz book collection being curated by New Orleans Public Library and register for a Jazz-themed library card. Locals and visitors alike will be able to enjoy the Bolden Bar in the lobby of the Market Thursdays through Saturdays with live music starting at 5 p.m. nightly. www.PHNOJM.org
Wink Design and Events
Wink Design and Events helped the CVB produce a spectacular event with a modern, luxurious feel. Wink is known for extraordinary event experiences and beyond-the-box design with a sophisticated-Wow factor. Wink produces every kind of event from weddings and social parties, to corporate events, charity galas and fundraisers.
Q: People are moving away from traditional room sets to create spaces that are more comfortable. What major changes should planners incorporate into their budgets in order to be able to design contemporary looking events? Are there any specific elements that you feel are critical to the overall look and feel that you suggest?
A: The typical classroom style, standard u-shapes and endless rows of general session sets are moving OUT while fashionable and modern looks are moving IN! When budgeting, meeting planners should focus more on design elements to make their event a memorable experience. Lighting, custom projections and grand entrances all create unique moments for the guests, while enhancing the space and reinforcing the importance of your session's message. Be sure to include dramatic elements to keep your guests focused on the speaker. Ambient lighting will instantly transform your space, giving the room an intelligent makeover. Next, add custom stage draping and you have an extraordinary focal point for an unforgettable production. Warning: following this advice may lead to tons of compliments, lots of praise and increased anticipation for your next venture! www.winkdesignandevents.com
Mardi Gras Productions
Blain Kern's Mardi Gras World and Mardi Gras productions are purely unique to New Orleans. The unique venue also inspires never before seen design in any environment through the Mardi Gras Productions team. The ESSENCE Fest event featured elegant flower décor in the lobby and on the dining tables during the event.
Q: We had a chance to feature arrangements from Mardi Gras Productions and our feedback was amazing. What is the key today to a modern floral look in a corporate event?
A: Minimal flowers, sleek lines with some type of lighting...all within budget. With a 40,000 square-foot warehouse located just two blocks from the convention center with more than 10,000 props, hundreds of backdrops, thousands of feet of drapery along with in-house linen, floral, lighting and set construction departments, Mardi Gras Productions ensures "Your Dreams Are our Realities." mardigrasproductions.com
Q: Your restaurant just opened to strong reviews, and you have done a number of very successful events at the Peoples Health New Orleans Jazz Market. For people that have not been yet, what can you tell them about your creative approach and what they can expect in their experience? With open kitchen that allows you to interact with diners, how does that change the experience for you as a chef?
A: Named for the Lowcountry traditional dish of a baked pot of rice and whatever else is on-hand, Purloo will give diners an in-depth look at and taste of Southern regional fare with locally-sourced, fresh ingredients. Chef and owner, Ryan Hughes, has earned critical acclaim for his Southern cooking with French savvy at some of New Orleans' most acclaimed restaurants. The 30-seat exhibition kitchen and 40-seat restaurant, located inside the Southern Food and Beverage Museum, will serve as a place to both eat and learn. The team is committed to engaging with customers to answer questions and explain the history and heritage of their meal. This engagement provides not only a great meal, but also a great experience. www.nolapurloo.com
Q: As you plan events all over the country, what is a trend you are seeing that you are excited about in terms of the future of special events?
A: The answer in its broadest iteration is immersion; full sensory use and memory creation via each of these ways that we interact with the world; an integration of the event's goals with the audience's consciousness; personalized experiences that tailor themselves to each attendee, so that the takeaway is as unique as it is unified. That is the present and the future.