500ft above London, with panoramic views of the glittering night time skyline, the UK event industry gathered for the inaugural Hire Space Awards on 24 October 2017. The venue? Landing 42, an event space located on the 42nd floor of the Leadenhall Building, which is affectionately known as The Cheesegrater, due to it's unusual architectural shape. Landing 42 proudly claims the impressive title of the highest dedicated event space in the capital.
The evening was an opportunity for the very best of the event industry to celebrate and be celebrated. Over 200 guests joined together for an evening of food, entertainment and recognition. On arrival the Cava, sponsored by Anna de Codorníu was being served and the room was glamorously decorated with Twilight Trees, which soon appeared across Instagram, accompanied by the #HireSpaceAwards hashtag.
Entertainment from Sternberg Clarke came in the form of a strolling acoustic band, during the drinks reception, followed by a lively performance on the main stage from string trio, Ember. Fun loving guests also entertained themselves in the Say Fromage photo booth, creating their own animated GIFS.
After 3 courses of delicious food, comedian Hugh Dennis, famous for his appearances on BBC's Mock the Week, took to the stage to deliver a short stand up act and to host the awards ceremony. A total of 19 judges from a diverse range of organisations, with expertise in hospitality, production, event management, marketing and more had been trusted with the difficult task of shortlisting the winners, who would be announced that evening.
The awards categories were grouped into 6 overarching themes; modern venue marketing, modern venue sales, most popular, forward thinking venues, individual and organiser. The winners in each category were:
Modern Venue Marketing
Best online experience - Banking Hall
Best content marketing - No. 4 Hamilton Place
Venue portfolio marketing award - Lime Venue Portfolio
Modern Venue Sales
Venue team of the year - Barbican
Best customer care - Lord’s Cricket Ground
Best wedding venue - RSA House
Best private dining venue - Searcys at The Gherkin
Best unique venue - Alexandra Palace
Best conference venue - RIBA
Forward Thinking Venues
Best all round use of technology - The ClubHouse
Best newcomer - Printworks London
Greenest venue - The Crystal
Venue in the community - Good Hotel
Unsung hero - David Taylor, Royal Museums Greenwich
Events team of the year - Festival of Media
The ceremony closed with a room filled full of excitement, as the winners beamed with pride, taking to social media to share their success. The poignant thing about event industry awards is that the event professionals are usually the people behind the scenes, creating the perfect platforms for other people to receive recognition. An event industry awards night is chance for all those event professionals that work long hours and with great passion, to take centre stage and be congratulated for their personal commitment to the success of their organisation. It is also a great opportunity to learn, to benchmark and to be inspired. By learning from others and by building connections, event professionals keep the event industry moving forward. It is events such as the Hire Space Awards that create an environment, which promotes and encourages innovation through celebration and networking. It showcases the pride of an industry bursting with dedicated individuals and teams.