Monaco’s signature supercars show, Top Marques, made a successful debut in Asia with a four-day event at The Venetian Macao that exceeded expectations, attracting over 12,500 visitors from all over Asia.
Many who came were clients of corporate sponsor HSBC, which had two VIP lounges located inside and outside the showfloor area where its clients could sit, relax and enjoy a choice of drinks and snacks.
“Our exhibitors also brought in their own guests. We had a group coming in by private jet from Manila, as well as groups from Taiwan, China and nearby Hong Kong,” says John Hardyment, president of Bayshore Pacific Exhibition, the show organiser. “This was by far the best show in terms of ambience and set-up for this kind of luxury event.”
Over 30 luxury vehicles from brand names like Ferrari, Maserati, Bugatti, Koenigsegg, Jaguar and Rolls-Royce, to name a few, were on display. A unique feature of the show was the installation of a 2.1km Gulfstream Test Drive track at the Macau Dome where invited guests had their turn behind the wheel.
But the event was more than just about cars; it showcased limited-edition timepieces, jewellery, fine art, yachts and exclusive gated properties around the world.
“One of the big challenges for us was getting the vehicles here,” says Gene Capuano, CMP, vice-president for convention and exhibition operations at The Venetian. “We have our shipping and receiving department here, and we are pretty experienced in how the customs work from overseas. But when you are moving cars that cost between HK$10 million (US$1.3 million) and HK$30 million (US$3.9 million), you’ve got to have insurance as you are putting these vehicles in planes and on boats. There was a lot of coordination a year in advance just to be able to plan something like this. If we don’t get them here, that’s the whole show. We had to coordinate with the exhibitors’ respective freight companies and there were more than 20 of them.”
Besides the venue, The Venetian provided other services to the show organisers, exhibitors and visitors staying in-house during the event, such as VIP service, door-to-door pick-up and customised F&B, among others.
Hardyment says: “I believe it was easier to organise the event in Macau as compared with any other destination, as venues like The Venetian are very professional and the MGTO (Macau Government Tourist Office) had given its full support to ease imports and customs issues as well as lend a hand in promotion.”
Glitzy evening functions
During the event, Top Marques Macau hosted three official functions: a welcome cocktail, a gala dinner and a Bordeaux wine dinner.
The Venetian sponsored the gala dinner held on the second night of the event and Macau’s premier integrated resort pulled out all the stops to ensure that it made an impact.
The two-and-a-half hour gala dinner began with a cocktail reception at the resort’s Ballroom G, where canapés and drinks were served while guests were entertained by live piano music as they examined the Luk Fook Jewellery display.
Entertainment was the evening's hallmark. There for all to see were a powerhouse cast of performers doing several song and dance routines, such as the String Trio Performance, the Thousand Hands Buddha Performance, the Music Diva Performance, the Peacock Dance and the Singing Gondoliers.
However, the evening’s high note was the dramatic entrance of a solar-powered car into the ballroom as dinner was being served.
“We see the value of sponsoring a big event like Top Marques Macau. It allows us to show others how we can execute an event of this nature,” Capuano says, adding that lifestyle luxury events like Top Marques bring into the territory a different type of customer demographic. “We are not only capturing revenue from the actual show but also revenues from other areas of the integrated resort as guests wine, dine and shop within the property.”
Event Top Marques Macau
Venue The Venetian Macao-Resort-Hotel
Date November 24 – 27, 2011
Number of visitors 12,500
Organiser Bayshore Pacific Exhibition Limited