I want to tell you about this corporate dinner because it was my first important event. An international company had decided to discard an exhibition, investing instead in a private event organized for major customers.
They entrusted me with the task of organizing a reception for over 100 people in a prominent location.
After panicking for … a short while, I prepared the planning.
Step 1: the budget. Once it was fixed, I began the search for the location.
It had to be a luxury, historical location, reachable from Milan without too much inconvenience, evocative enough and with the support of an event in the event to make it even more attractive to customers.
The customers were all Italian but we would have company management from all over the world.
For this reason I discarded Milan city and opted for Malpaga castle (BS). A castle with a drawbridge and a bit of history to tell, a place not known to most and almost certainly not yet visited by my guests.
The reception would have been organized outdoor but with the possibility to move everything under the arcades in case of rain, this is basic for an event of this magnitude.
Two important notes:
- The diet. In the invitation, in addition to compulsory membership (“RSVP within the” as mandatory field, therefore little SVP to be honest), I had requested any intolerance or specific diet (Muslims, vegetarians, celiac …) . I always prepare the name tags to specify the dedicated trays, not to force people to ask and to mention their diet. It’s not privacy, it’s respect.
- Ladies. Malpaga is a castle so the floor at the party hall is made of cobblestone and topsoil. This detail is never mentioned but we, women, know the difficulty of walking on a 12 or more heels on the pebbles or in the damp earth. Informing ladies on time allows them to be prepared, at least psychologically. It would be ideal to have a budget to cover the ground with a aisle runner and a carpet for the salon, which not only makes the ladies’ life easier but the ceremony even more elegant. In my case, there was no budget, the guests, mostly men, would certainly have appreciated more the environment in the natural state so it was decided to make ladies’ life a little bit more difficult.
Event in the event: every castle has its own history. 15 minutes guided tour, a drink in the hand, a short nice and cultural moment, a short time of aggregation away from the pre-assigned seat at the table.
Table settings in corporate colors, excellent catering and background music that then became fun when guests started to sing and dance after the second glass of wine.
A great night that became stunning when the moon and the torches remained the only sources of light, a success!