As event professionals we are always on the lookout for the latest event trend, venue or destination. After spotting a trend in the large amount of investment in Manchester, including the event scene, we knew we had to do a FAM trip to the city! We identified the destination but we needed the right partner to make this happen with us. After noticing Make Events on our social media feeds with their hashtags “thedifferenceismake” and “magictouches” we knew they would be the perfect fit for us and luckily for us they thought the same about Eventprofslive!
Make Events are the go-to corporate events agency in Manchester – we’ve worked with many event agencies but Make Events are like no other! The team are extremely creative and go the extra mile to get under the skin of your brand and what the audience experience will be to make it the most amazing event. They can assist you with everything from venue finding, conferences, award ceremonies, retreats, corporate parties, team building events and incentives – and not just events in Manchester they work where you need them working not just in the UK, but Internationally.
The team exceeded all our expectations and made it a FAM trip to remember. You may be asking how did they make this so memorable? Yes, the venues were fantastic, yes the logistical arrangements were on point but for us what made it was the Make Events team! They were fantastic hosts that demonstrated their expertise, their passion and creativity throughout the weekend. There were lots of those “magic touches” that they pride themselves on including:
- a brand identity and logo throughout the event (Manchester 48:00);
- a fully branded delegate pack delivered in advance to all attendees which contained a full guidebook for the weekend, suggested Manchester podcasts, a link to the Make Events’ Spotify playlist and luggage tags;
- personalised coasters as name places for our lunch;
- an amazing “Eventprofs survival kit” full of their tips and most loved products/snacks to survive the crazy events days;
- welcome drinks – but not any welcome drinks – everyone was welcomed with their favourite drink;
- Manchester Starbucks mugs for us to remember them when we are having a cuppa back at home;
- bucket hats….all will become clear as you read the blog; and
- made our birthday girl feel very special with lots of unique touches.
It takes little over 2 hours to get to Manchester from London. Once there, as well as walking, we were chauffeured around the city in a VIP coach by Swans Travel who were brilliant.
We all know that during events it is easy to get sucked into bad eating habits to keep the energy up! On this trip we tried to keep healthy by walking as much as possible (over 30,000 steps), we kept hydrated with Make Events’ branded water bottles, some of us attended a private yoga class to stretch ahead of a busy day and we had healthy snacks along with a list “healthy hacks for eventprofs on site” in our survival kit from the team! But don’t worry there was plenty of indulgence too i.e. some missed yoga because of the fun we had the night before!
You know the saying “If Carlsberg did”? Well, If Carlsberg did events they would use Make Events. Read below of what we got up to, so you understand why we are making this bold statement.
What a way to kick off…the hotel is gorgeous and throughout you can see a nod to the 150 years history of the building. The hotel has 270 bedrooms – make sure you check out the snack boxes and the teapot with the tea cosy! There are 17 flexible and versatile event spaces including the largest in the North West within a hotel for up to 1,000 people! To help demonstrate what is possible here, we watched a video of some of the amazing events that Make Events have held at the Principal. We ended our visit with a refreshing mocktail and some lovely healthy snacks in one of the restaurants.
The Lowry Hotel
The Lowry Hotel doesn’t need an introduction, with 15 event spaces all with natural day light, and a maximum capacity of 400 there are plenty of options for events. We were lucky to enjoy a lovely lunch in the private dining room that can hold up to 24 people – we were super impressed with the collaboration with the hotel and Make Events as the menu incorporated ingredients that related to the number “48” a nod to the Manchester 48:00 brand for the event. There are 165 bedrooms, something that stood out to us was that they all have a “Alexa” in the room where guests can ask “Alexa, ask the hotel..” any questions about the hotel – first time we’ve seen this use of technology in a hotel.
We walked in here and our jaws dropped with the size of the venue (and some more so than others because Ninja Warrior was filming in the building!). With 28 event spaces that can accommodate from 10 to over 10,000 delegates with over 23,000sqm versatile event spaces this place really does deserve the jaw dropping reaction! The Central Hall is a stunning space with original features from its time as a train station, we also loved the purpose built 804 seat auditorium with state of the art equipment – we couldn’t resist getting on the stage for a group photo! We also checked out the super comfy chairs whilst enjoying some popcorn and a short video of how Make Events and Manchester Central have worked together before – our jaws dropped (in between eating popcorn and the delicious pop cakes!) on how the spaces can be used for events.
Every city has one of those iconic hotels and the Midland Hotel is Manchesters! Make Events gave us the heads up that the spa is rather good here and that they thought we would like it – they were right (again) we loved the spa and what is great is that you can hire it for private events – we’ve got a few ideas on a fun event for this space but we are keeping them a secret! We were also impressed with the French restaurant where Adam Reid is the resident chef (he was on the Great British Menu), the restaurant seats up to 45 people and can be hired exclusively with various tasting menus available for a memorable evening. In total, there are 11 event spaces and 312 bedrooms.
We were lucky enough to stay at the Radisson Edwardian which is very central in the heart of city so the perfect location to house your delegates within their 263 bedrooms. We were greeted at the bar by one of Make Events’ magic touches – our favourite drinks which they had gone to the trouble to find out! The hotel has 22 event spaces ranging in sizes. Exciting news for the hotel is their new restaurant which is opening very soon – a Japanese and Mexican restaurant – which sounds great and the perfect reason to return! When we checked into our rooms we were presented with the amazing “Eventprofs Survival Kit” which is incredible!
Manchester Art Gallery
We started the evening in the most AMAZING way….we were escorted from the Radisson Edwardian to Manchester Art Gallery with a saxophone and guitar player! Honestly, they were incredible, our Instagram stories were going crazy, such a unique and fun way for your guests to move from one venue to another – we felt like true VIPs! After dancing our way through the streets, we arrived at the beautiful Manchester Art Gallery for a private drinks and canapes reception and tour of the gallery. We love a art gallery for a gala dinner or drinks reception and Manchester Art Gallery provides plenty of options across their 8 event spaces. What we’ve noticed about Manchester is that everyone is super proud of their local brands, over canapes we were introduced (and tasted) to Three Rivers Gin which is hand-crafted in small batches in Manchester’s first ever city centre Gin Distillery – a perfect add onto your events either with a tasting at a venue or an experience at their Gin Distillery.
We loved this restaurant; the concept is an immersive and interactive dining experience! We were super lucky to have the VIP table which is in the middle of the restaurant and prime views of the catwalk (which some of us made an appearance on later…) with the amazing acts! Usually these types of venues are all about the entertainment and then fail on the food and drinks well that is not the case here! The food was delicious – especially the tacos and the truffle ravioli – and the Espresso martinis – wow! As the evening goes on, the DJ gets going and the music was brilliant, we were all up dancing pretty much until the lights came on – now you know why some of us missed yoga! The restaurant can be hired exclusively for up to 100 or there is a private dining room for smaller events.
National Football Museum
The venue would work well for a drinks and canapes reception for up to 400 guests, during the event guests would be able to explore the exhibition and enjoy catering from GG Hospitality. A nice add on would be to have a key note speaker which the venue can help with – Gary Neville has been known to do this (subject to his diary). If you wanted to do a drinks and canapes reception followed by a gala dinner, we would suggest having the drinks and canapes reception at the museum and then take the short walk – perhaps escorted by the fantastic musicians – to Manchester Cathedral for the dinner.
The cathedral is gorgeous, we want to hold a gala dinner here super bad! The Make Events team have held many events here and talked us through how you can utilise the space – which is large and can hold up to 940 guests for dinner! As mentioned earlier it would work really well with a drinks reception beforehand at the National Football Museum or even Harvey Nichols as both venues are a short walk away and both can cater at the cathedral so your guests would experience a consistent catering experience throughout the evening. We loved this venue and even saw a wedding!
Shopping, food, drinks and events our favourite combo!! We were all super impressed with how you can use the store as corporate event spaces for up to 150 guests. It would work really for so many formats from a keynote talk, a gala dinner, a fashion show or an intimate dinner followed by an experience in the city – for example a concert or a theatre show. We were treated to enjoy one of their spaces with a private bar with Mimosas, Bloody Mary’s, canapes and a goodie bag from their Beauty Hall. Our credit cards (and other halves) were impressed that we didn’t do too much financial damage in the store!
After a morning of exploring the city, we were ready to enjoy some lunch. We headed to the Grand Pacific which is a homage to the golden age of high society and we loved it – one of members loved it even more because of their mutual love of pineapples which were subtly throughout the venue. If you are looking to hold a drinks reception, then check out this venue as it is perfect for champagne flowing events. We were treated to a delicious high tea in the private dining room – we are still dreaming of the Eccles cake with cheese – please can you send some to us in London?!!
WOW WOW WOW we all loved this venue and left thinking about all the amazing events we could hold within this vast space that has 8 event spaces for up to 1,500 delegates! We were welcomed with mini canapes and Vimto cocktails whilst we watched an incredible video of how the spaces can be utilised. The Make Events team walked us around the spaces with the team from Victoria Warehouse explaining how they’ve worked together to create some very special events including the Manchester PA Awards.
Located opposite Old Trafford this place is heaven for football fans but you don’t need to be a football fan to appreciate the 5 event spaces here. Our favourite space has to be the top floor space that has great views of the city and a retractable roof – again Make Events were on hand to provide us with creative inspiration on how the space could be utilised and how they’ve worked with Hotel Football. The hotel is located next door to Victoria Warehouse and offers a competitive rate on their hotel rooms to house your delegates. We couldn’t resist having a kick around and posing for a photo in the goal!
Lancashire County Cricket Club and Hilton Garden Inn
After exploring the city for 30 hours, we had a couple of hours to chill with a face-mask and enjoy our room at the Hilton Garden Inn which is located at the Lancashire County Cricket Club (“the LCCC”) – the rooms overlook the cricket ground! The LCCC is a unique venue with a variety of event spaces with the largest holding up to 1,000 guests! We were welcomed in our rooms with a mini bottle of prosecco and a bucket hat by the Make Events team. After some relaxation, we were all pumped to head to our private box in the Hilton Garden Inn to watch the Liam Gallagher concert whilst wearing our bucket hats. This was the first time the Hilton Garden Inn have provided this for a concert including a private host, food and beverages – such an amazing experience!
Now do you understand our bold statement…”If Make Events are involved you are guaranteed an epic events experience”?!?! We could wax lyrical about Make Events and Manchester so get in touch with the team yourselves, so you can learn more about the venues and suppliers involved with the weekend and how Make Events can work with you on your next event.
You can see all the images here.