The last of the Intercontinental changes

Apologies for the long delay. What a year for conferences and incentives!

Wellington Intercontinental has gone through a major refurbishment and has been totally transformed. The public area as you walk in, is warm and inviting and a great place to catch up with people or just relax in between meetings.

The conference floor, while structurally the same, looks and feels a whole lot different and they have got the latest AV technology as we are seeing in a lot of the IHG hotels now. The rooms can be quite versatile

The accommodation rooms are looking stunning and they are one of the rare hotels these days not only to have a club lounge but a fully upgraded lounge with amazing views. What a way to start the day having a delicious breakfast overlooking the harbour. The entry level rooms have had a soft refurbishment but even that has totally transformed the rooms.

The Intercontinental has such a wonderful location. It is handy to the Events Centre, the arts centre which is fabulous for cocktail events, the harbour and all the amazing restaurants but also Mojo Coffee Headquarters. It is situated in a 1950 shed and is where all the coffee is stored and processed. The offer coffee tasting, a tour of the works and there is also a small meeting room overlooking all the machinery and staff.

The Intercontinental is an impressive brand. There are lots of things I like about the brand but one impressive aspect is their system of having partners that work with the hotel -whether it be an attraction, a restaurant, an attractive cocktail venue etc. It gives the hotels such diversity as well as making it very easy o organise.

The Intercontinental story continued….

Intercontinental Sanctuary Cove would be one of my favourite hotels. It is more of a resort than a hotel and is elegant and gracious.

Walking into the hotel lobby there is a sense of space and elegance with the high pitched roof and then as you go outside to the playing fountains, the expansive and beautifully kept grounds to their own lagoon pool with a sandy beach you can’t help but be impressed and feel spoilt.

The bedrooms are a good size. They are well appointed and with the wooden parquet flooring and the views from the balcony they so comfortable and sophisticated.

The conference suite offers a good variety of rooms all with good prefunction areas both inside and out. As the conference suite is a stand alone building there is no disruption from the other guests in the hotel.

An easy walk gets you to the local shops and restaurants and the golf course is right on hand.

One of the many great features of the hotel is the numerous options you have for the special dinner. And if you run out of ideas within the hotel it is not far from Dreamworld where you can have a fun night with the team and good food in a unique venue.

The hotel is well positioned to get to McLarens Landing – another dinner option. The launch leaves from the hotel jetty.

McLarens landing is a real asset to the area. It is a privately owned island with only the Balinese designed buildings for functions on the island. Different sized venues are right on the beach to cater for different numbers and the beautiful Australian bush right behind with all the birds and wildlife. There are plenty of options for good team fun – beach volley ball, water sports and sedgeways to name a few. If you have the budget for lighting and and a few extras it will really impress the team.

Intercontinental Sanctuary Cove really is very special and a good reason to put it on your list of possible venues for your Australian conference. As it is not in one of the main cities I think you might be impressed with the rate considering all it has to offer.


Intercontinental Group is making some exciting changes within the group

In the next few blogs I will highlight a few of the exciting changes in the IHG chain of hotels.

Intercontinental Double Bay opened its doors this year. It really is a spectacular hotel and has so many special features.  As soon as you walk in the door you get that good feel. It is situated in the quaint treed suburb of Double Bay and is a small and tastefully furnished hotel. They have retained the pale grey marble floors of the original hotel and have enhanced it with a series of soft and deeper grey hues on the walls giving a very peaceful and elegant look.

The bedrooms and bathrooms are a good size and well equipped with everything you will need, the staff are pleasant and efficient and the food excellent. There are seven stunning and spacious suites for those who need more space.The hotel has 7 conference rooms of varying sizes with large prefunction areas.

And for the “icing on the cake” they have a roof top pool with amazing lounges to while away the time while you admire the magnificent view.

An impressive way of getting to the hotel is to take a ferry from Sydney harbour.

Definitely worth putting it on the list of possible venues for your next Australian Conference.


It’s busy out there.

Please don’t delay or hesitate to get the ball rolling for your conferences. Hotels are getting very booked up this year. To avoid disappointment it is best to at least get some prices and an indication of availability. It does not commit you to continue with the enquiry but at least you have a foot in the door if it proceeds.

So if you have an inkling there maybe a need for a meeting and a conference let me know and I will enquire for you. There is no harm in that!

Our very own cowboy town.

Did you know there is a very authentic cowboy town in central North Island? Now that would get your company buzzing. All the clients need is perhaps a cowboy hat, some denims and maybe a pair of boots. The venue does all the rest. Sleep in authentic bedrooms, watch a movie in the courthouse, buy the odd forgotten item in the local store, dine in the Lucky Strike Saloon with a honky tonk piano and have loads of fun.

I met the creator of the town some 10 years ago. Such a clever man who had so much fun creating it with genuine furniture and artefacts for America. There have been many guests from USA all of whom say it is more authentic than anything they have seen in USA. I would love to help you create the most memorable event your company has had. It is probably not for winter as it does get very cold but how about planning it for late in the year or better still I think early next year.

Give it some thought and give me a ring to get prices!

A genuine free lunch on offer

Just a reminder to those that have not worked with me for a while. My services are absolutely free unless I attend the conference in which case I charge a nominal rate only when I am actually working on your conference.

The free umbrella includes finding a venue, organising the food, transport, activities – and anything else that you require for your conference to run smoothly. I make sure I know all the venues so I can give a very genuine and personal description of where you are going. I believe that you should not arrive at your conference and get surprises. Everything should be explained and described before you go so you know exactly what you are spending your money on. Conferences cost a lot of money and it is important they run smoothly to get the most out of them. I believe knowing the venues helps a great deal towards achieving a successful event.

I would love to visit you to explain how I can offer this free service and how I work – so drop me a line and we can find a time that suits. It is a simple story – only take 10 minutes!

The beautiful Coromandel

I have just been fortunate enough to have my son’s wedding in the Coromandel. Hahei to be exact and I fell in love with the little seaside town.

As I was driving out after a fun filled few days I thought what a wonderful spot for a small meeting retreat. It can’t help but be restful and inspirational. There are no upmarket facilities but it does offer tranquility and a real time to take a break from the hectic life of the office, the traffic of Auckland and just enjoy the peace, the quiet and utter beauty.

There is a charming place to stay and a perfect place for a meeting.

If you would like to hear more about it please let me know. I really think for a small meeting it would be ideal and very therapeutic. Sometimes it is refreshing to go somewhere completely different even if they don’t have the top facilities.

Why don’t you do something completely different for your next meeting?

There are a few opportunities out there to do something completely different. Something that will take the clients out of their comfort zone and something that will bring the team together. How about a few days at Waiouru Army museum staying in the army barracks where the NZ army stay when they go for training? I also learnt that some other countries like Singapore train there. They enjoy the open spaces that our camp offers.

You would have your conference surrounded by New Zealand Military history in an historic Waiouru Military Camp building. Having a conference there opens up many opportunities for team building.

Taking people out of their comfort zone always ends up to be a very successful experience as people come away with great self pride that they achieved something they wouldn’t normally.

Give it some thought! Let me know if you would like me to inquire for you – no obligation to inquire!

Copthorne Bay of Islands

Those that have been arranging conferences for some time will remember Emily who used to be at the Copthorne a few years ago. Emily returned to the hotel at the end of last year.

She really is outstanding and pulls the conference together, however complicated, perfectly. I have just had a conference at the hotel. Emily was wonderful to work with and despite a lot of last minute additions to the plans Emily worked through them methodically and calmly spotting potential pit falls before any disaster had time to develop.

It has such a wonderful location and with a good conference team on board it is worthwhile considering. Especially as we head into winter – it is always warmer up there and they do have very good winter rates. 

If you would like me to get some quotes and availability please let me know and I will do that with pleasure. I highly recommend you consider the hotel for your next conference.


I am sure you are all aware of Riverhead Tavern. A delightful venue right on the water, the 153 year old pub has been restored beautifully. It has maintained the original character but of course has the modern day facilities making it a wonderful venue for meetings and functions. Late last year they renovated The Boat House – their largest venue. It has large double doors leading out to an oak shaded deck and lawn. It really is so different to anything else in Auckland. If you want you can go there (or back) by boat- tide dependent. This can really be a venue with a difference. The staff are very attentive.

Please contact me if you are interested in a quote.