THE BRIEF To motivate the European sales force during the final quarter of the year and build team spirit and rapport, Guardian Wealth Management wanted a warm location, luxurious hotel, some history and culture and plenty of adventurous activities. Cape Town was chosen as the ideal location due to its host of land and water-based activities and luxurious hotels. The client also wanted delegates to enjoy free time with their partners. The in-house events team, with the help of local DMC Wedgewood SA, were able to devise a programme that ticked all the boxes.
CHALLENGES Guardian wanted the entire group to arrive into Cape Town at more or less the same time. With consultants spread across a number of European cities, this posed logistical challenges. Also, South African Airlines flies into Cape Town at 9.30am from the UK and hotel rooms wouldn't be ready until after lunch.
SOLUTION After exploring flight timings, it was decided the easiest solution would be to get all of the European delegates to Heathrow, where they could take the direct overnight flight to Cape Town. On arrival, the client hosted a private champagne reception at the top of Signal Hill to inject a bit of glamour into the arrival, after which the hotel rooms would be ready.
EXECUTION At Heathrow, delegates were ushered to the Servisair VIP lounge where they enjoyed drinks and snacks in relaxing, comfortable surroundings until departure. They were met in Cape Town by a Wedgewood representative and transferred by luxury coach to Signal Hill.
"At Signal Hill the sun was shining in a cloudless sky which made the views of Table Mountain and Table Bay even more spectacular," says Guardian Wealth Management business operations manager Sharon Pearson. "We arrived to find tables covered in crisp, white linen, a spread of delicious canapes and staff to keep our glasses topped up. The group felt very pampered and commented on what a fantastic way it was to start their Cape Town trip."
After the reception, the group was given priority cable-car passes to the top of Table Mountain. They were then whisked off to the luxurious Table Bay Hotel where a private check-in and ice-cold cocktails awaited at the start of a packed five-day itinerary. The highlights included a helicopter tour of the winelands, a sailing regatta across the Cape Bay where the group was split into two and raced against each other, a diving trip with great white sharks and a fun 'Cape Point rally', which included dashing around the South African coastline picking up clues while taking in the dramatic scenery of the Cape of Good Hope and an insight into the local history and culture.
"The itinerary was packed with thrilling adventures and fulfilled all our needs," says Pearson.
VERDICT Guardian Wealth Management director David Howell describes the trip as unforgettable. "We will be talking about it for years to come," he says. "The group said they felt privileged to have been on the event. It has motivated the sales force and definitely makes our consultants want to be involved in the next incentive," he says. "Wedgewood was very professional and thought of every detail - even down to corporate branded menu cards at every restaurant we dined at. This attention to detail helped make it a fantastic event."
Company Guardian Wealth Management
Group size 20
Agency In house
DMC Wedgewood SA
Date May 2008
Venue Table Bay Hotel
For more information on South Africa, click through to the C&IT Destination Guide: South Africa