We were approached by Meitheal when they were looking to do something a little different. With over 1200 buyers on the way from all over the world they needed somewhere to wine and dine them together with something big to entertain them. They were looking for something luxurious but rustic, a five-star experience that also had something unique and memorable to it.
Our client FÃ¡ilte Ireland’s brief was to source a venue to facilitate 1200 international and Irish buyers, for their Final evening and Gala dinner. The challenge presented itself when the Venue we came up with was the same one as FÃ¡ilte Ireland had planned to hold their meetings for the buyers, and wanted the Gala dinner to be a completely separate space. A Space for 1200 guests to dine together in Dublin was at that time impossible, but that is a word that the team at JBE do not like. We “pitched” the idea of of a marque with a difference. A circus tent. A marquee did not exactly instill excitement in our client and so the concept of a “Medieval Marque” arose, and subsequently our theme was born.
Our goal was to bring the guests back to the year 1169 with the re-enactment of the wedding of Aoife and Strongbow. We researched every detail to ensure total immersion in the fantasy. Guests dined under enormous tents at trestle tables, ate exquisite roast pig and were waited on by vassals and wenches in detailed period dress. Entertainment was provided by a concert harp quartet and the Bunratty singers with backing by a trio of musicians performing extraordinary period music on the mandolin, fiddle and bodhrÃ¡n. And with a nod to the surroundings there had to be an aerialist and even some horse back skills amongst the trestles included in the programme. But that wasn’t all. The main event of the evening was something truly spectacular. When they first arrived, every guest was handed a sash in a colour corresponding to one of the four provinces of Ireland. After the meal, guests were brought outside (and provided with thermal blankets) and treated to a spectacular jousting competition. They were told to feel free to cheer for their province (though really they didn’t need much encouragement).
We took the client brief for “something a bit different” and made sure the evening was unforgettable, an experience that the guests will keep with them for years. We exceeded our client’s expectations by making sure every detail of the evening was taken care of, from the practical difficulties of finding the right venue with the highest levels of luxury, to the meticulous detail of the fantasy itself. The client, the guests and the performers were all thrilled with the way the evening turned out (as were we) and we still get calls and comments about it to this day.