ICC Belfast proudly played host to the Belfast Ambassador Awards 2018. This event takes place annually and welcomes guests from a broad range of industries. Last year, Ambassadors helped in attracting events to Belfast worth over £29m to the local economy.
Sparkling drinks reception
The evening of celebrations got underway with a sparkling drinks reception in Bar 1 showcasing stunning views of Belfast lit up at night and providing guests with the perfect opportunity to mingle, catch up with one another and discuss the many and varied projects that they have been working on that help to position Northern Ireland as a thriving destination to live, meet and play. Entertainment from the fantastic Ulster String quartet provided the perfect back-drop to start celebrations, with a repertoire that ranged from the “Jurassic Park” theme tune to “Mondance” by local legend Van Morrison.
Let's get cracking
We flowed from Bar 1 into Hall 2 following the call for dinner and took our seats. This was a fantastic opportunity for guests to experience the varied capabilities of Hall 2 as a space for gala dinners, with many attendees already familiar with alternative day-time set ups having attended previous seminars, conferences and exhibitions here. The branding opportunities this space provides were also creatively utilised to display hanging banners that tied in perfectly with the floral centrepieces that were bedecked with pink carnations and lilac roses.
Our in-house catering partner, Hospitality Belfast, served a locally inspired three-course meal, the highlight of which has to be the dessert, “Three Eggs in a Box”. This aptly named course consisted of a trio of eggs presented in a little egg carton with tasty fillings; White Chocolate and Passion Fruit, Dark Chocolate and Raspberry and Milk Chocolate and Caramel. The egg cartons were branded for the awards and featured the tagline “Let’s get cracking together”, alluding to the unique partnership approach that has helped Belfast and Northern Ireland make such great strides in the Business Tourism sector in recent years.
Rosie Gormley, Head of TP ICAP Belfast, was the guest speaker for the evening. TP ICAP is a global FTSE 250 company that’s made up of professional intermediaries that plays a pivotal role in the world’s financial, energy and commodities markets. Rosie’s words were inspirational, and she noted the importance of continued investment and the strengths of Belfast as a prime location for companies seeking to diversify and increase their levels of foreign direct investment.
The award presentation followed Rosie’s address and the atmosphere in the room was electric as the time came to recognise and celebrate our medical, academic and business leaders for their contributions to the city and putting Belfast on the map! A total of fifteen awards were presented to our influential ambassadors for their part in helping #TeamBelfast secure national and international conferences for the city during 2017/8. The ICC Belfast team would like to extend a huge congratulations to all of the winners, in particular Professor Brian Falzon, Head of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering at Queen’s University, who was recognised as The Ambassador of the Year.
Professor Falzon played a crucial role in the winning bid that will see Belfast welcome the International Conference on Composite Materials 2021, which will bring up to 2,000 delegates to the city.
Star of the show
The 2018 Ambassador Awards finished with a rousing performance by The Hit Machine Drummers, hailed as Ireland’s most amazing and energetic drumming troupe. Pictured above are the group with ICC Belfast's very own Eimear Hone who jumped at the chance to join them on stage to get involved in all the fun.
Overall the awards were a huge success and together as #TeamBelfast we look forward to continuing on our mission to bring the world to Belfast.
New Ambassadors are always welcome to join Team Belfast. If you're interested in finding out more about the programme get in touch with Visit Belfast by calling 02890 239026.