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Heineken South Africa’s visit to Velmoré Hotel & Spa

10 September 2019

For every single South African the word “beer” means a lot. It’s entrenched in our culture and our history. What would a Braai be without a few cold ones? When one of the big powerhouses of the beer industry came calling and gave us an opportunity to play host to their annual sales conference, you could just smell the excitement in the air at Velmoré Hotel & Spa.

Heineken, yes Heineken. The “world’s most international brewer” with more than 250 International, Regional, Local and speciality beers and ciders. Heineken has an international footprint in more than 70 countries. The eagerness and excitement finally set in.

Our conference venue De Bastille was set up in such a manner to display all the different brands that fall under Heineken SA and showcase the essence of each brand. There was an upside-down room and a ball pit. The entire conference room was set up in a walk through exhibition style, where everyone at in the conference room had headsets and at each station, a member of each brand would educate everyone at the relevant station without all the noise interfering with their presentation. This made for a very easy transition between the different stations.

Moving on to the actual business part of the week. Our conference venue called Tres Sage catered for 400 Heineken delegates having a mass brainstorm session and planning the future of the company.

With the business side of things taken care of, there was a sense of party in the air, after all, we are talking about Heineken. Our pool area was converted into a staging area with a DJ making sure the vibe is set. With the sun setting in the backdrop and the Hennops River in full flow, cold beers on ice and a few dry snacks, it definitely set the mood right for the evening.

Moving on to the red carpet set up with a full draught beer station, making sure everyone can have a cold Heineken on the red carpet at any time. Traditional African dancers welcomed all the delegates to the main attraction of the entire week, the Marquee tent.

This brings us to the tent and it’s not just any tent but a marquee tent that can hold up to 500 people comfortably. The marquee tent was complete with not one but two fully stocked bars with brands available such as Windhoek, Amstel, Strongbow, Millers and of course Heineken. You could see people were getting thirsty just looking at the bars. Literal walls stacked with lit up Heineken, surrounded by 41 tables decorated in a timeless style, with accents of gold and a dash of nature. The entire marquee was lit by candles that unquestionably set the mood for the Gala Evening. Entertainment was provided by The Muses playing their rendition of Toto’s Africa, that was absolutely spine-tingling. We also had our very own Rugby World Cup-winning captain and Heineken Ambassador John Smit as guest speaker, giving some interesting insights into the culture and the reasons why that team brought home the William Webb Ellis Cup.

By this time hunger set in. For starters the Chef created Smoked Salmon & Cream Cheese Roulade. The main course was a buffet with selections of meats, veggies and salads. What would a Gala Dinner be without something for all the sweet tooth’s out there? Yes, we are talking about Desserts. Each table had 2 platters with a selection of Mini Cheesecakes, Mini Milk tart Brownies, Mini Doughnuts and Pavlova.

After the Gala Dinner finished, all delegates could let their hair loose and enjoy the evening with a few cold ones and good company until the early hours of the morning.

Hosting such an well-known company was an honour and a privilege. We look forward to many more!