Clients, event agencies, buyers and media were welcomed into the new-look foyer with its raised ceilings and airport-style check-in desks for a Champagne reception.
Artificial snow, huskie dogs and a Big Ben ice sculpture set the wintry scene downstairs, while Cuban band Kandela mi Son and feather-clad Samba dancers from Brazilian Fantasy gave the first-floor Pickwick Suite a tropical feel. Caterer Leith’s served dishes including tequila and lime confit salmon and mojito macarons.
Over the past 18 months the venue and its facilities have been upgraded, and the first two phases of its £12m capital investment programme are now complete. QEII Centre chief executive Mark Taylor said the re-launch event was just one of many milestones in the delivery of the centre's new vision. "The QEII was built as a beacon of British excellence, craftsmanship and technology and we are determined to return the centre to its former standing as London’s finest multi-purpose events facility," he commented.
As part of the re-branding, the venue's name has been shortened to QEII Centre to better reflect its event capabilities. "We’re always a centre for conferences, but also for exhibitions, fashion shows, product launches, banquets, awards presentations and more," added Taylor.
Colin Green, creative director at Wildfire, the integrated creative agency responsible for the centre’s new branding, said: "Wildfire are particularly proud of watching this iconic venue begin to realise its true potential. There is further change on the horizon, so watch this space."
Other suppliers involved in the re-launch event included event management company Wonderland Events, creative communications consultancy Custard Communications, and Instagram photobooth creator Social Playground.