Organising the Greatest End of Financial Year Celebration: Our Top Tips

Date Posted: 11/04/2019 8:45:08 AM
Posted By: Laissez-faire Catering

How does your organisation celebrate its End of Financial Year? An EOFY celebration is the perfect time to treat your staff, celebrate their milestones and keep them motivated. It's important that an EOFY remain on target and not to dry, while making it clear that the employees are the focus. At Laissez-Faire Catering, we understand the need to make your corporate events spectacular and memorable. Here are some tips for making it a party you can truly celebrate.

Take It Out of the Office

Most employees don't want to celebrate financial goals in the same place that they met those financial goals. Book a spectacular venue and you'll be on your way to a spectacular party. Some of the best venues at the moment are the Urban Winery Sydney and The Venue Alexandria, but at Laissez-faire Catering we're constantly exploring the best options for our customers

Consider matching your catering to your office culture. If you have an active, outdoorsy office, consider an outdoor park or other scenic venue. If you have a high class, sophisticated office, it may be time to visit a lounge or contemporary restaurant. Booking a venue cuts down on the amount of decoration and planning you need to do on your own.

Create a Bespoke Canape and Drinks Menu

It's the food that most people are going to remember. You can take to the Laissez-faire Catering team about creating a bespoke canape and drinks menu, focused on celebrating your team and its accomplishments. Canapes are a great solution for EOFY celebrations, because they let employees get a little of everything rather than focusing on a few large meals. Canapes allow employees time to socialise and celebrate while also snacking in between.

Drinks are also a large part of the celebration, whether alcoholic or non-alcoholic, and they shouldn't be forgotten! A good cocktail can be a memorable event in and of itself, especially if it's done with style. 


Choose a Unique Theme for Your EOFY Party

A unique theme is beneficial for nearly every corporate celebration, because it gives you a fun and entertaining starting point. A theme will guide you while you make decisions about food and drink, while also informing your decoration and color decisions. Further, a theme gives employees something to expect and get excited for: they can even consider dressing up to a theme.

For an EOFY party, you can consider something fun and frivolous (to ease any stress and tension) or something sophisticated and dashing (to celebrate financial success). Choose a theme that aligns well with the values and the mission statement of your company culture, and you'll make it easier for your employees to look forward to the celebration. 

Balance Your Celebration and Your Socialisation

An EOFY event often needs to give out awards, discuss company milestones and tackle the future of the company. But between these important, critical events, it's also important to let employees relax and socialise. An EOFY should have some brief speeches, awards and other events, while also having entertainment and leisure activities available.

It's important to give employees free time, so they can talk, eat and drink. If employees don't have this time, it'll just feel like another company-focused seminar, rather than a real reward and celebration. At the same time, taking some time to acknowledge individual employees, give out awards and celebrate the company's success will show the employees that they are valued. 

Combine It With Some Time Off

The end of the financial year is often a stressful time, with many departments struggling to meet milestones or wrapping things up. It can be a good idea to balance an EOFY celebration with time off: schedule it just before a long weekend, or schedule it as part of a larger corporate retreat. That means employees are already going to be in a great mood, and they're either going to be looking forward to their time off or already enjoying it.

Larger, corporate retreats also give you the chance to integrate your EOFY celebration with a specific, company-building venue, and team-building exercises. If your company has a strong, focused culture and you want to build upon it, a corporate retreat can be a good way to do so. In a corporate retreat, you can control all the elements of your EOFY celebration, while making it part of a bigger journey.

Laissez-faire Catering's Exclusive EOFY Offer

Working with a caterer can help you bring your EOFY celebration from concept to creation.   From organising your venue to creating a complete catering menu, we'll be able to create an event to remember.

We currently have an EOFY exclusive offer. If you are planning an EOFY event, we'd love to help.   Contact Laissez-faire Catering today  to find out more about our bespoke catering options. 

Why Event Themes are So Important for Corporate Events

Date Posted: 21/01/2019 5:32:00 PM
Posted By: Roselen Fernandez

 theme party

When planning a corporate event, one of the first things you should think about is having a strong theme. A theme is optional for many personal events, but for a corporate event it's really a necessity. Here are some of the reasons why a corporate event can benefit from a theme.

Event Themes Offer a First Impression of the Event to Employees

Many corporate events can sound generic, such as awards ceremonies, or holiday parties. When employees are told that such an event is happening, they may not be able to get really excited about it: after all, they don't know what to expect. Having a theme gives employees something to latch onto and get excited about, offering a positive first impression.

Event Planners Can Use Event Themes for Decor and Design

Planning an event from scratch is very hard. An event theme gives an event planner information about what type of decor they should invest in. Certain themes lend themselves very well to specific colors, patterns, and decorations. All of this ultimately simplifies the process of planning. 

This is especially true of more common event themes, such as a "beach side or tropical vacation," as there are many examples of these themes that you can look at in design magazines, scrapbooks, and online. 

Event Caterers Can Design Menus Around an Event Theme

An event theme gives your caterer a jumping off point when designing your event's menu. Of all things in a corporate event, the food is arguably the most important. Food is what most people are going to remember the most. 

Your caterer can get creative about matching your food to a theme, potentially based on geography, appearance, ingredients, or season. An arrangement of exciting and unique food will not only emphasize your theme, but also give employees something to talk about both during and after the event.

Event Themes Are Memorable Compared to Events Without Themes

An exciting and whimsical theme event is going to be more memorable than an event without theme, as there's more to distinguish it. A generic corporate event just doesn't have a lot to remember, whereas a themed event can have unique activities, food, and design -- all of which will keep people talking about the event for years to come.

In the future, employees will be more likely to attend corporate events and enjoy them, as they already know that the event is likely to be engaging and fun. Corporate events that are non-mandatory can easily have attendance issues, while making corporate events completely mandatory often strips them of their fun. 

Event Themes Let Employees Work Together

theme party butterflies

Deciding upon an event theme doesn't have to be the responsibility of the event planner alone. Rather, an event planner can have employees work together to decide on themes and add elements to the theme. This taps into the creativity of employees while also giving them a certain amount of ownership and engagement in the party. The more they engage with the party, the more likely they are to get a party that they enjoy.

Event Themes Can Be Used for Any Type of Corporate Event

A theme is an easy way to plan virtually any type of corporate event. It doesn't matter what type of event it is: a theme can be applied. Moreover, you can choose how much you want to apply the theme. Some events can be heavily themed, with costumes and events, while other themes can be a very light theme that involves only catering and decor. 

Event Themes Let Employees Get Creative and Involved

In addition to letting employees make decisions about a theme, employees can also get creative and involved in other ways. You can host contests that are related to the themes, have employees dress in costume, or have employees participate in making decor. This gives employees some time to connect with the theme of the event, while also giving them some fun things to do together.

Planning and engaging with a corporate event is an excellent team-building exercise, regardless of the type of event. If you're interested in helping employees work better together, having them participate in the planning of a corporate event can have some major advantages. In addition to this, it does reduce the amount of planning that the event planner has to do on their own.

All-in-all, an event theme essentially creates a framework for a corporate event. Meanwhile, employees are able to decide how much they want to get involved with the theme, as well as adding their own input to the event itself. If you want a memorable, exciting corporate event, you need a memorable, exciting theme. You can get started now by discussing your corporate event and your needs with Laissez-Faire.

Call Us Laissez-faire Catering Sydney

Finding The Perfect Sydney Venue For Your Event

Date Posted: 19/03/2018 9:40:28 AM
Posted By: Tara Connolly

Deciding upon the best event space or venue is very crucial to your event’s overall success. It may be a corporate party, a wedding, a birthday or an awards night. Whatever the reason, the venue will hold everything in place. Although finding a venue takes time, it doesn’t have to feel like a daunting task.

Let’s say you have already identified the type of event you’re planning and the purpose of the party - now all you need is the venue. There are different factors you need to consider when selecting the right venue for you. Before we discuss some of the best venues and event spaces, let’s go through the factors you’ll need to consider when choosing one.

#1 Know Your Target Audience and Guests

When choosing a venue, knowing who your guests are and how many will be attending the event will give you an idea of the capacity you need. You have to make sure that you know at least an accurate estimate of the number of guests since this will limit your venue options. The venue should also reflect the guests taste and expectations.

#2 Check Your Calendar

Timing is a big factor when choosing your venue. The date of the event will be the next limiting factor. Depending on your event, you may be either flexible with your event date to get the venue you want or you have to be flexible with the venue of your choice in order to get a date that works.

#3 Know Your Venue Budget

With an open-ended budget, you will have hundreds of venue choices, but it is more likely that your budget may be limited. So, you should be aware of your budget limitations beforehand, but you can always plan a great event within a reasonable budget.

#4 Venue Location

After having the number of attendees and the possible dates narrowed down, it’s now time to know the locations of the venues on your list. Other than hotels and event conferences which are very popular, you can further narrow down your options to which venue is the most convenient for your guests or to a location which will increase the RSVP rate.

#5 Venue Space

The venue that you will choose should also have the appropriate space for the type of event you’re planning. Also, does it have a space for a dance floor, does it have their own PA system? What kind of table setup will you require? Does the facility’s condition reflect your standards? Does the venue meet the criteria of the event?

The venue should also have ample parking space (or easy access to public transport), offers good security, possibly offer services like catering, tables, chairs and linen rentals or floral arrangements if needed.

#6 Venue’s Reputation

A venue’s reputation is sometimes the difference between holding a good event and having a truly great event. You can see it by how the venue manages their staff, facilities and their clients. You will feel they care if they treat you like a VIP or the venue is flexible to your requests. Schedule a site visit to actually see the venue and see if it fits your criteria for the overall feel of the event. Ask for a tour around the venue including the entrance, the different spaces available, bathrooms and parking lot.

Examples of Great Sydney Venues

Below are 3 examples of spectacular venues that might be perfect for your event:

Roundhouse at UNSW


The Roundhouse is the venue of choice for the biggest music acts and has evolved into accepting a range of events. The Roundhouse can do concerts, conferences, product launches, dinners, parties and weddings.

The venue has a capacity for 10 to 2,200 guests with a panoramic room that can seat up to 1,000 guests or 500 individuals for a banquet style party.

The venue also provides a cutting edge AV system with a modular stage and PA systems with 50 years of experience in creating a great production. It also offers a 360 degree balcony with 8 flexible breakout rooms with built in AV systems. These spaces can be customised with removable walls, thus you can combine all rooms into one.

The venue is suitable for:

  • Company parties
  • Business conferences
  • Product launches
  • Mini concerts
  • Formal dinners
  • Weddings
  • Exhibits.

Menu types can be formal plated, buffets, canapes, cocktails and food stations. Drinks could include bubbly, beer and non-alcoholic drinks since the venue is suited for big parties to small intimate gatherings.

The Freedom Hub

Freedom Hub

The Freedom Hub is a 100 year old warehouse event space located in the suburb of Waterloo, Sydney. The venue is constructed with high ceilings with black steel beams which are perfect for hanging gardens, festive lights and bright flowers. The cement floor is hand made of hand smashed river pebbles with white wash walls and large windows that add to the beautiful natural lighting.

100% of profits from The Freedom Hub supports victims of modern slavery & human trafficking within Australia. Their slave free supply chain and preferred suppliers ensure that they run ethical events, ethical weddings and your guests will love the feel good factor.

The venue is best for these styles of events:

  • Drinks and canapes followed by a speech or presentation
  • Dinner events for up to 100 guests
  • Breakfast seminars or brunch events
  • Cocktail events for up to 150 guests.

La Porte Space

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La Porte Space is a multifunctional and unique space that provides luxurious creative spaces for leading industry businesses.

La Porte Space is located within the walls of a restored 1930 heritage building which offers a range of Scandinavian designed studios and concept spaces perfect brand showings, fashion shows, cocktail parties, media dinners and small corporate events. The venue can accommodate up to 400 guests with 5 function spaces.

The venue is best for:

  • Formal dinner events
  • Art launches with drinks and canapes
  • Cocktail events
  • Big family dinners
  • Reunions with buffet style dinners.

Click here to check out other excellent venues for your next event or party. Enjoy!

Tips For Hosting A Successful Gala Dinner

Date Posted: 26/09/2017 12:01:26 PM
Posted By: Tara Connolly

Tips For Hosting A Successful Gala Dinner

If your organisation is trying to gain support for a cause, a gala dinner may be one of the best ways to reach your goal. There is a lot that must go into hosting a successful gala, including time, organisation, and planning. If you have never hosted a gala before, you are probably wondering how to get started. Fortunately, by following a few simple tips, you can be well on your way to hosting the ultimate gala that leaves a lasting impression on your guests.


What is your event's purpose?

When you first get started organising your gala, you need to thoroughly define the event's purpose. This purpose should include everything from what you hope to achieve to how you will meet your goals. If you don't have a defined purpose for your event, then the way you plan the event will be extremely difficult. After all, it is your event's purpose that everything should be centered around.

Create a budget

The next step to planning a gala is to create a budget. Your budget, in fact, will affect almost every aspect of your event. It will determine how much you can spend on catering, seating, entertainment, and more. There is much involved in hosting a gala, and you need to make sure you allow money for all aspects. The most common expenses will include those related to:

  • Venue costs
  • Audiovisual equipment and support
  • Entertainment
  • Advertising
  • Food and beverage
  • Seating furniture
  • Props/Decor
  • Prizes to be auctioned

You may find that a lot of the items mentioned above can be donated but you need to make sure you have enough money to cover them in the event that donations do not come through.


Are you going to fundraise?

Many galas are used for fundraising. If your gala is going to be used for this purpose, you will want to find other fundraising tactics to incorporate into the gala itself. For example, sure your gala may help fundraise on a per plate basis, but you can also sell raffle tickets, have a live or silent auction, sell sponsorships, and more. No matter the type of fundraising that you want to incorporate, make sure they are relevant to your gala's theme. For example, if you want to sell raffle tickets for a gala themed around animal safety, then the raffles should be for items such as pet supplies.

Choose a theme and venue

Ideally, you will want to choose your theme when you define the purpose for your gala. Now, you will want to pick a venue. The most important aspect to look for in any venue is that it allows your guests to socialise and network. An inviting atmosphere is, of course, important, but an impressive one is even more pertinent because it gets everyone in a good mood and promotes an environment of friendliness and joy. The theme and venue that you opt for will set the entire tone for the event, so make sure you choose wisely. Laissez-faire has several venue options to choose from, with the three of the most popular being the Australian National Maritime Museum, Harbour 220, and The Venue Alexandria.

The Australian National Maritime Museum provides breathtaking views of the Darling Harbour and gives you and your guests inspiring glimpses of the city skyline. The Venue Alexandria is another unique venue that features a large warehouse space and provides lots of 5-star amenities. If you're wanting to host an exclusive and intimate gala, Harbour 220 is your best venue option.


Make sure you have the right AV support

When it comes to audiovisual, you need not only the right equipment but the right support as well. The ultimate goal should be to provide your gala guests with a magical experience, and with the right AV support, you can accomplish this goal. Your AV support is also of the utmost importance because they will be involved in setting up various gala activities and entertainment, including dance floors and more.


Choose between food and beverage options

Lastly, your gala will never be complete unless you choose the right food and beverage option. Fortunately, you will have several menu options to choose from. From a tailored platter to a plated menu, the theme and purpose of your gala will help determine which menu is best for your event.

Contact Laissez-faire today to learn more about venue and menu options.

Theme Ideas for your next Corporate Party

Date Posted: 26/07/2017 3:26:47 PM
Posted By: Tara Connolly

Corporate Party Theme Ideas for 2017

Whether it’s an end-of-year celebration for your company, getting together at the office to celebrate a milestone or a newly confirmed deal, it’s important to acknowledge the efforts of all company members and employees with an exclusive corporate event.

Let your team enjoy the perks of the job by organising an incredible event they’ll never forget.

Company event organisers are always looking for new ways to get guests interested in attending company events. At Laissez-faire, we think there’s no better way than to have a themed corporate party! We’ve put together a few tips to help you organise your next corporate party.

Choose a theme

This is going to be the most creative part of the process - choosing a theme for your corporate party!  In the past, Laissez-faire has had the honour of catering for some amazing themed parties: 007, Masquerade, Circus, Rustic/Workshop, and more!

Check out our Instagram account to see some more images from these events.

Check out these other great theme ideas:

Movie or TV show theme - asks guests to choose their favourite movie/TV show from a survey list, or their favourite recent release. Whichever has the most votes is your corporate party theme! This is a great type of theme to work with because you will be able to check out the original source material when making props, designing the decor and directing the overall atmosphere of the event. Guests should be encouraged to dress up according to the movie or TV show for some great photo ops!

Music theme - choose a genre and base your theme around this! Guests can dress up as the artists of that genre or just enjoy a perfectly tailored playlist. If it’s rock, consider a live band with cocktails and a light show. If it’s pop, consider a DJ and a dancefloor with canapes galore and flashy decor.

Era theme - This one is a definite crowd-pleaser. Choose a fashionable era (the 20s, 60s, 70s, etc) and design the decor around that. Guests can dress up in costumes from that era and dance to the music. This is a great opportunity to go all out! Your catering team could also be dressed up while they serve your guests delicious canapes and drinks from the era.



Our amazing team thank you Clifford Wallace #eventinception

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Choose a venue to suit the theme

You could set up the party in your company offices if the guest list isn’t large, however, this doesn’t feel very special. The process of getting ready for a company party, going to a dedicated venue space where your employees have never been before, is kind of magical and will really make them feel special.

If you’re having a movie/TV themed party, lay down a red carpet at the entrance to the venue. If your theme is rustic/chic find an open venue like an old barn or stable house to really compete the atmosphere. If you’re having a nautical themed event, consider the Australian National Maritime Museum, or something else near the water with a beautiful view of ships.

Finding the perfect venue for your theme will take some research and shopping around, so start early and stay organised!



Fairground follies event last week #coorporateevents #catering #laissez_faire_catering #christmasparty #sydneyvenue #eventcatering

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Serve a menu inspired by your theme

A theme brings together all aspects of an event, and it’s no different for food. This can be hard to do, and you might find it difficult to create an entire menu based on your theme. We suggest a few key aspects that guests will know and recognise as part of the overall theme of the event.

For example, a 007 themed event could feature a signature martini cocktail handed to the guests as they walk into the venue. This will make them feel engaged in the event as soon as they walk in the door! Similarly, you could create a signature canape spread to fit your theme. A nautical themed party could serve delicious sashimi canapes.



Simple bites are often the best #canapes #cateringsydney #sydneycatering #laissezfaireevents #eventcatering

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Take photos to remember!

Encourage your guests to post images from the event on their social media channels using a specific hashtag. You could feature the hashtag on a sign as guests enter the venue. If the theme is rustic and chic, use a chalkboard and get someone with swirly handwriting to write your special tag on the board.

This is a great way to get your guests involved in the event and to ensure they have fond memories of the night later on. Print the best photos and display them somewhere in the office where everyone can pass by and point out the funny memories.

We hope these tips will help you organise your next corporate party. It will be one to remember!


BONUS: Click on the banner below to download the Laissez-faire Platter Menu, which might be perfect for your corporate party!


Family Day at Centennial Parklands

Date Posted: 1/04/2017 2:11:00 PM
Posted By: Laissez-faire Catering

Corporate Family Carnival at Centennial Parklands

We recently had the exciting and monumental challenge of hosting a corporate family day at Centennial Parklands, the logistical planning of organising an event for over 4000 guests proved that we stand behind our quality and consistency of our product, our clients gave us glowing reviews and the abundance, quality and sheer variety of food ensured that EVERY single guest left our event absolutely satiated.


Imagine if you can, a carnival style atmosphere with themed stations providing international flavours and delicious morsels to taste. We cleverly positioned a variety of ten different food stations covering a multitude of cuisines.


Our street style Barcelona paella bars were a smash, with both a traditional Catalan Paella that had the crowd’s tummies rumbling as we started the sofrito to ensure an authentic and delicious dish, alongside a more Valencia “beach” style vegetable paella. We spent days preparing the fresh artichokes and the product was absolutely mouth-watering.

Complimenting the Spanish cuisine, we also had traditional Napoli style pizza bars, producing crisp based, piping hot pizzas with fresh mozzarella and a simple selection of truly classic favourites.


Clearly the new trend in food and making a huge hit at our events, we have harnessed the Ottolenghi bug and gone all Tripoli with our Lebanese bars, fresh pitta, piping hot, homemade falafels, lamb kofta, hummus, tabouli and yoghurt dips. We dressed the tables with beautiful glazed earthenware, luscious pomegranates and lemons on the branch, which we felt really tied the station together, it smelt great and looked chic!


And if we couldn’t make it any more Moorish… we finished the event with Spanish style donuts. Try conjuring up a selection of vanilla glazed, salted chocolate chip cookie, caramel popcorn, Malteser and the time honoured “Nutella" and then try saying NO... Couldn’t do it right???


Improve your Annual Corporate Dinners

Date Posted: 27/03/2017 1:20:00 PM
Posted By: Tara Connolly

Annual Corporate Dinner Themes 

Annual corporate dinners are regular features for most companies. It becomes a night for showcasing new products, networking, an opportunity to reward employees, celebrate a milestone, present new people or just a social event that can bring everybody together which is rare for larger companies.

Over the years, the idea of organising for events like this have changed. It has evolved into something more exciting and something that an organisation looks forward too. Companies try their best to experiment on entertainment options, catering, themes, and venues.

We think themes make corporate events even more special.

Why hold themed annual dinners?

Here are some reasons why you should organise an annual themed dinner:

#1 It creates buzz

It builds up excitement for everybody. That is if the theme is chosen well. The talk can spread and generate more audience and will assist in the marketing of that event later on. And you can create themes from anything you fancy.

#2 Use the theme to show the purpose of the event

Companies can use a theme to relate back to the reason for the dinner. It ties the whole event together. Whether it’s just the colour palette or the dress or the decoration, the theme can act as a unifier.

#3 It promotes social sharing

People will literally snap hundreds of photos at a fun and instagrammable event. So imagine the social media exposure you can get from this. Creating impact around your annual dinner can help it spread on social media.

Theme ideas for your next annual dinner

#1 Seasonal themed dinner

The idea of dressing up for each of the seasons is different and can be done any time of the year. Plus it can offer more ideas for decorating. And the food choices for this theme can be seasonal as well. Choose a venue that can showcase it well and you are good to go.


#2 Brand themed dinners

There’s no such thing as too extravagant if your aim is to revolve the party around your brand. Why not, right? Brand themed dinners creates the psychology of oneness. Incorporating your company logo and design to the decor, the food design and the entertainment can create one fun dinner party.

This helps you, as an organisation to stay focused on the objectives and on the idea of your company as a whole as well. Remember, brand identity sells and will make your guests happy they are part of something so great.


#3 Sustainable themed dinners

Have you ever been to a sustainable themed dinner? It adds to the value of the event. In the world where many businesses try to promote sustainability in the office and at home, a themed dinner like this can create a big impact not only on the organisation but on your social media followers as well. You can include this in your objective as well as a company. All decor must be central to sustainability. Recyclable utensils, no plastic and the idea of after party leftovers being composted is a good goal.



For food, including sustainable produce for catering is a great and delicious idea.

#4 Era themed dinners

Era themed dinners never seem to get old and still excite everybody. Plus, there are so many eras to choose from. You can go futuristic, 1950’s, or maybe 1970’s. You have lots of choices. For this, choose a venue that can be transformed to fit your theme as well.



#5 Entertainment themed dinners

Remember that James Bond themed dinner you saw on our Instagram? You can pull it off too for your event. It’s easy and a nice way to cater the event for everybody. Other choices include Wizard of Oz, Harry Potter, Academy Awards, Casablanca, old Hollywood, etc. It will create excitement and will give everybody something to talk about during the event and even after it happened.

Bond Function Yots 2776

So, have you chosen your annual dinner theme?

New, Hot Sydney Event Venues

Date Posted: 20/02/2017 3:38:59 PM
Posted By: Tara Connolly

Hot Locations

We know that you're all looking for the next big thing, the newest venue, the hottest place to socialise and communicate your brand message in our urban jungle, our beautiful Sydney. Well we’re happy to make a new introduction;  The Venue should be on your radar. It's hip, it's big, it's new and it’s a hop, skip and a jump from the CBD.

We also thought you would appreciate an update and refresh of the Chinese Gardens. Now that the ICC SYDNEY has opened and construction down this end of town is done and dusted (well for the next 5 minutes at least) we wanted to ensure this private garden paradise is back in your event destination thought process.


Alexandria NSW 2015

Sydney's Newest Premium Warehouse Event Space

Located conveniently between Sydney’s International Airport and the CBD, we offer clients a large, flexible warehouse space with 5 star amenities catering to a wide variety of events including gala dinners, product launches, fashion parades, conferences, corporate functions, weddings and community events.

With a capacity of 1,000 guests for a dinner, cocktail style or conferencing, flexibility is the key to our space. We will offer a unique opportunity to dress the interior to create your own event with the industrial warehouse look.

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Darling Harbour NSW 2000

Nestled in the heart of Darling Harbour, the Chinese Garden of Friendship offers a slice of traditional China in the heart of Sydney. Modelled after the lavish private gardens of the Ming Dynasty, which ruled China from the 14th to the 17th century, the Chinese Gardens where built to celebrate the friendship between Australia and China. Renowned as one of the best Chinese gardens in the world outside of China they have become a popular destination for weddings and celebrations.

The landscape of the gardens is stunning. The garden was designed with traditional Taoist beliefs that stress the importance of infusing Qi, the essential force of life and energy into the garden. In order to achieve Qi, every plant is hand-picked and the landscape is intricately designed to reflect aspects of nature and harmony.

Guests can wonder the hidden stone paths and explore waterfalls, lakes and Chinese flora. Scattered throughout are garden pagodas and a large teahouse providing a truly unique and unforgettable event destination. As one of Laissez-faire Catering's favourite venues, the Chinese Gardens provide the ultimate backdrop for a wide range of events.

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Perfect Venues for your next Product Launch

Date Posted: 20/02/2017 11:24:32 AM
Posted By: Tara Connolly

Planning your next Product Launch

A product launch is a great marketing move for any business wanting to get their new product out there and create interest. Take for example the buzz that big companies like Apple and Samsung create for their product launches. They’re huge, classy and cool events that can rake in millions of dollars.

This is because they know how to launch a product and they already have an established name in their industry. How about small, medium and large businesses devoid of the apple logo? How do you strategise, create excitement, attract audience and generate awe during your product launch?

It’s as simple as highlighting the day and the event together with the product. It’s about creating one event that can create impact offline and online. How?

Planning the launch

Generating brand awareness across platforms and channels is a must for any corporation or business planning to launch a new product. This means posting on social media, hinting at what is in store for the future. Get your audience talking about you.



Scallops #foodmadewithlove #unique #party #events #anmm #laissez_faire_catering #seafood #fresh

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To increase your odds of getting noticed, let’s focus on the planning of the day itself - the venue, the food and the atmosphere. This should all be planned before you start talking about the product launch on social media or in email newsletters.

Use the venue to entice your audience

The event venue can make or break the atmosphere you want to create for your product launch. While many product launch events would suit an on-site atmosphere (in the company office or business place), holding an off-site event can add a sense of gravitas and more people are likely to be interested in attending if it isn’t being held at their regular 9 to 5 office.

Venues create impact. Choose one that can fit your ideal number of guests and consider one which will complement your brand’s goal. Here’s two of our top recommendations for product launches: Cell Block Theatre at the National Art School and Harbour 220.

Cell Block Theatre

The cathedral-like space of this venue is amazing and hard to find elsewhere. It’s historical and interesting. The venue also has an entertaining space outside, so your guests don’t have to be confined to the interior when it’s time to mingle and look around. Accommodating up to 350 for a cocktail event inside and an additional 400 for the courtyard, this venue is perfect for memorable product launches.

The Cell Block Theatre at the National Art School

Find more information about Cell Block Theatre here.

Harbour 220

Harbour 220 on the other hand is an exclusive venue that suits a highly sophisticated atmosphere. This venue boasts impressive view and is well suited for an elegant product launch. It can be a venue for cocktails or even sit down dinners for up to 100 guests.

Harbour 220 Cover Photo

Find more information about Harbour 220 here.

Remember, these are just two gorgeous venues you can choose from. For other recommendations go to our list of stunning and functional venues here.

Choosing the right food and beverage

The dilemma with product launches is that cocktail and sit down dinner events both work. It all depends on what kind of atmosphere you are going for.



Gin, blackberry and lemon #catering #events #laissez_faire_catering #drinks #gin #gintonic

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A cocktail product launch encourages more socialisation and can feel more casual than a sit down dinner. After all, you need guests to move about and talk about your product right? You can come up with an impressive cocktail menu by asking your caterers for recommendation. Pairing drinks with delicious hors d'oeuvres will keep guests interested throughout the event.



Did you ask for paella for 400 #yesplease #eventplanning #laissez_faire_catering #cocktails #unique #events #paella #spanish #food #biggestpaellaever

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A sit down dinner product launch can feel more refined, and this means the event must have great food whether it’s platters or a three course meal. Your product demonstration or announcement might come in between meals, and there should be a signature drink you and your caterer have chosen for the event to compliment the meal.

Creating the right atmosphere

Create the right atmosphere with a theme. If your product launch is for a new tech gadget or software, use cool blue lighting and matching minimalist decor. If your product launch is for a new series of fashion items, play popular music and make sure the venue is bright enough to show off your product. Most importantly, accommodate your guests like royalty and they’ll never forget your product launch.

Check out our drinks menu for more ideas


A Nautical Christmas Party to Remember

Date Posted: 18/02/2017 3:18:00 PM
Posted By: Laissez-faire Catering

Featured Event - Nautical Christmas Party

christmas party 1 

christmas party 2

Event Brief

To create a cutting-edge End of Year Celebration with the WOW factor.

Our job was to ensure the entire experience was a fresh, upbeat and memorable cocktail party for every one of the 3500 people on the guest list.

The event was also designed to be management’s opportunity to express gratitude for the dedication shown by the staff throughout the year.

The Australian National Maritime Museum was transformed into a multi-zoned entertainment hub, with a central stage and performances on HMAS Vampire and HMAS Onslow.

With something for everyone, guests were provided with opportunities to mingle amongst their friends and colleagues and celebrate the end of a busy year.

christmas party info

christmas party 3 

christmas party 4 

christmas party 5 

christmas party 6

For more information on The Australian National Maritime Museum, click here.

In-Store Company Events

Date Posted: 1/11/2016 3:22:44 PM
Posted By: Tara Connolly

Easy & Fun Catering For Retailers

Creating a positive work environment, thanking key sponsors, and bringing together customers are all very good reasons to host a catered event in-store. Retailers can easily and effectively create a catered event that makes people feel appreciated and thankful to be in business with you. When choosing a catering company and planning the event, there are a few simple things you can do to ensure it is a true success.

Marquee Dinner

Establish a Goal for the Event

Prior to booking catering services or establishing a menu, determine what the event’s goals are first. You may wish to:

  • Thank customers, employees, partners, or management
  • Reward staff for key accomplishments
  • Inspire and motivate customers to embrace your brand
  • Launch a service or product
  • Improve company morale.

Once you have an idea of what your goals are, you can create a menu and catered event around it.


Every element of your event should convey your very specific message. For example, to boost employee morale after a long day, a menu of fun foods can inspire and show appreciation. If you wish to reward key players, creating a luxurious sit-down meal with fine dining may be more appropriate.

Creating an Effective Menu

A catering company will work closely with you to create a menu appropriate for your guests and goals.

Some key areas to consider include:

  • Set a budget first. Plan your menu around your budget.
  • Offer foods most people will appreciate. While you do not have to cater to everyone’s tastes, you should offer options that fit most people’s ways of eating (vegetarian, vegan) and allergen concerns.
  • Offer alcoholic beverages if appropriate. Additionally, ensure visitors have access to transport to find their way home without concern after alcoholic consumption.
  • Consider a VIP pre-event. This event can offer specific individuals more attention and recognise their efforts with a select menu.
  • Presentation matters. Creating an elaborate, well-organised event with beautifully decorated tables, carefully placed napkins and fine china can really impress those in attendance to a formal event.
  • Add a “wow” factor. This may include a signature drink, a special dish to honour your guests or a company logo added to decorations.
  • Offer something unexpected whenever possible. Work with your catering company, for example, to create a menu with fun foods your guests may not normally get or create an “energy station” with a table full of candy and childhood favourites.

Laissez Faire BBQ set up

When selecting a catering company for such events, pay attention to their suggestions for your special evening or corporate luncheon. Whether you plan to host an in-store promotion or simply a team building exercise for your staff, you’ll want to ensure the catering company has the tools, resources, and the creativity to make this event truly unique and memorable for all who are in attendance.

printing store

Corporate Event Catering

Date Posted: 20/10/2016 11:52:53 AM
Posted By: Laissez-faire Catering

Corporate Events: Not Another Boring Work Lunch!

In this guest post, Kim Jones talks about working lunches and how catering can be used to help focus on outcomes.

Well, I remember very well when my boss would give me a project with a tight deadline. My thoughts would race… “How am I going to deliver a global program for employees with sensational outcomes?” Out would come my GANTT chart ready to capture time, tasks and people. “How do I engage everyone and bring them on the journey?”

With short deadlines and your team working on multiple projects, it’s really important to have your team giving priority to your project. One of the best ways to evoke a positive response is to invite your team to a working lunch. Why? Some reasons are that working lunches may:

  • Sometimes, lunchtime is the only time that is available when a large team’s availability is limited
  • It takes your team out of the normal style of meeting
  • Encourages people to be more open
  • Eating while you work makes the atmosphere more casual and open
  • Free meal! Saves your team buying their own lunches!
  • Helps to make use of every moment when time is of the essence

But beware that working lunches have been done to death and bad catering experiences can completely undermine the purpose of a working lunch.

So here are a few pointers.


Not boring sandwiches!

Sometimes the thought of another boring working lunch brings terror and annoyance to some team members because they may:

  • hate what’s offered for lunch – “how can I focus on work when I would never eat this type of food”
  • can’t eat a particular type of food be allergic/sensitive to what is offered
  • drop the food down their front and are incredibly embarrassed, or
  • realise that their food etiquette is under scrutiny by their boss and are incredibly embarrassed.

 Canapee 2 2016

As mentioned in a previous blog, life, if you didn’t realise, revolves around food! There is an art to weaving emotions into the preparation even a simple meal.

So for a working lunch, here’s the recipe:

  • Add to the bowl a mix of corporate hearts who want to deliver a project
  • Ask attendees in advance to select from a menu that accommodates any allergies
  • Add food that is interesting and healthy that hits the spot!

  Cheese and fruit

Here are some tips to make your working lunch add to the success of your project outcomes:

Plan Ahead

Give yourself plenty of time to find the right service provider who can deliver the right catering to your working lunch.

Sweet canapee

Time Management

Have the catering set up to the side before the meeting.Start your meeting with hot drinks. Research shows that people are more likely to pay attention and be comfortable after a hot drink.  Very little in life can’t be improved by putting the kettle on.

How about  a well-deserved office coffee outing to one of our favourite cafes at the Australian National Maritime Museum on the Harbour or the beautiful State Library NSW?


Don’t burn your lips! Sitting down with a hot drink with your working lunch, while talking a project through, slows the pace of discussion. It takes longer to drink hot drink. As you sip, it gives you time to listen to others or talk to the people you’re with about the program.

Mousse cups

Make your working lunch work!

So make your working lunch deliver your project outcomes by adding food that works. There’s a lot to do and partnering with the right service provider will make the lunch simple and successful.


More about the author

Kim Jones is a non executive director on private company, government and not-for-profit boards.

Kim is also a management consultant, with more than 30 years experience with roles including superannuation trustee, investor relations and communications specialist with ASX100 institutional fund managers and financial services companies. The earlier part of her career was spent as a marine scientist, high school teacher as well as promoting new technology at the University of New South Wales.

Kim holds a Bachelor of Science (Honours) degree from the University of Sydney, a Graduate Diploma of Education, and is a Graduate of the Australian Institute of Company Directors (GAICD).

The Conference Centre at the ANMM

Date Posted: 17/10/2016 2:48:28 PM
Posted By: Laissez-faire Catering

Australian National Maritime Museum presents a new waterfront conference and event space

One of Sydney's most popular venues, the Australian National Maritime Museum, recently underwent a refurbishment. The upgrade brings The Conference Centre, a versatile series of spaces with jaw-dropping harbour views and features that make this new venue perfect for corporate events.


The Conference Centre, opening in November this year, features a dedicated entrance, 13-metre-tall glazing and an  entertainment terrace looking over Pyrmont Bay toward Barangaroo.



The venue features the capacity for up to 120 guests for day conferences or up to 200 guests for cocktail events. The available spaces make this new venue perfect for conferences, day-long meetings, evening events and corporate off-site meetings. An audio-visual suite is also available for use. Laissez-faire's award-winning menus are presented in the specially-designed servery.


If that's not enough,  The Conference Centre is also home to the Wal Gentle Boardroom. This  solid timber boardroom is in keeping with the museum's maritime heritage mission. The Boardroom offers an elegant contrast to the rest of the venue spaces.


Museum director, Kevin Sumption, said,

“We are delighted to be able to offer a previously private wing as a venue for commercial hire and cater to increasing demand for event spaces in this vibrant and growing Darling Harbour location. The Conference Centre emphasises the uniqueness of our venues spaces. We are thrilled to be able to host business events combined with visits to our galleries or evening cocktails on the helipad of an ex-naval destroyer, the HMAS Vampire. It allows us to share Australia’s maritime history and heritage in a dynamic way.”


The Conference Centre is a new and exciting venue for event organisers to experience and for guests to enjoy.  If you'd like to know more about The Conference Centre at the Australian National Maritime Museum, contact us.

You might also be interested in our canape and conference menus.

Corporate Christmas Party Themes

Date Posted: 12/10/2016 3:46:20 PM
Posted By: Laissez-faire Catering

Theme Ideas for Your Next Corporate Christmas Party

As the last month of the year rolls around, it's time to celebrate your employees' accomplishments and reign in the new year. With a little research and creativity, you can plan a party that will be talked about for years to come. Here are some theme ideas that can turn your next corporate Christmas party into a blast rather than an obligation.

James Bond, 007

A 007 themed Christmas party is the ultimate mixture of cool and class and will guarantee a great time for all employees. Imagine a swish city venue, cocktails aplenty, black ties and glamorous dresses.

We catered an event just like this at the YOTS cafe at the Australian National Maritime Museum. Check out some photos below!

Bond Function Yots 2776 

Bond Function Yots 2808 

Bond Function Yots 2787

Embrace Summer

We Aussies know how to turn the tables on a white Christmas, so let's embrace a summer-themed corporate extravaganza. Substitute the traditional Christmas tree with a palm tree, set up tables with umbrellas, make sure beach balls are aplenty, and bring your best pair of shades. Hot dogs, hamburgers, barbecue, corn on the cob, and potato salad will bring summer's warmth to your party. Don't forget to play Vacation by the Go-Go's and California Girls by the Beach Boys.



Tonight's salad bar ..#venuecatering #events #eventcatering #catering #laissezfaireevents

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White Christmas

Bring the joy and magic of a winter wonderland to your corporate party with white and winter-themed decorations. White chairs, tablecloths, ornaments, angels, snowflakes, and snowmen will liven spirits and set the holiday mood. Artificial white Christmas trees can mimic a snow-covered forest, and accents of silver can create the sparkle of snow glistening in the light. Have your guests wear white attire to complete the scene. Light-colored foods such as eggnog work best for this theme, though all types of cuisine are welcome. Just tread carefully around dark-colored sauces and drinks, which can stain white clothing.



Christmas Around the World

Celebrate the diversity of your employees with an internationally themed holiday blowout. Of course, food will be the star of this show. Have your employees bring their own traditional dish, or set up food stations featuring different cultural cuisines. For example, you might have a Japanese station with sushi and onigiri, an Italian station with lasagna and pasta, and a French station with crepes and pastries. With so many different cultures, you'll want a spacious venue to accommodate the decorations. Check with your employees first to make sure the decorations are tasteful and genuine. If you have the budget, you can also hire cultural performers to make your party a true hit.



Sushi station #anmm #catering #laissez_faire_catering #pirates #anmmuseum

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Nothing says fun like a circus! Invite the office to a night out at a spectacular venue to watch contortionists, fire-breathers and other circus performers while they sip on refreshments and enjoy canapes.

We catered  an event just like this at Fairground Follies .


Fairground Follies, located at the Antique Mechanical Music Museum, features a most exciting and unique collection of fairground and mechanical music and is available for functions and tours.

This venue and theme combo  would be a great talking point for your employees  for the entire year!


Christmas Karaoke

While the previous two themes focused on color and food, this one is all about music - as performed by your employees. Pass around a signup sheet and have your employees write down their song of choice. Rent a karaoke machine, and let the fun begin. If that's not enough, turn it into a competition with solo and group categories, a "remember the lyrics" segment, or even a musical video game segment. After all is sung and danced, make sure to have a DJ or live band to finish off the night in style. Decorations can include cutouts of famous music artists, musical notes, and famous lyrics printed on napkins or tablecloths. The menu can range from light appetisers to a buffet style station to traditional dishes. Musically-themed desserts add a nice touch.



Cocktails anyone? #events #laissez_faire_catering #catering #latenight #cocktails #drinkservice

A photo posted by Laissez-faire Catering (@laissez_faire_catering) on


The Ultimate Corporate Event Experience

Date Posted: 23/07/2016 2:47:06 PM
Posted By: Tara Connolly

Corporate Events: Savour The Sensory Experience

In this guest post, Kim Jones talks about corporate events and how catering can be used to heighten the experience for attendees.

Perfectly captured in movies like “Chocolat”, life revolves around food! There is an art to weaving emotions into the preparation of a feast or simple meal.

Add to the bowl a mix of weary and hardened corporate hearts! Impressing your guests can be a minefield for the fainthearted especially when you’re trying to make your corporate event memorable and keep guests wanting more.

The art of eating is enhanced with timing and creation of concoctions connected to the purpose of the event. Beautifully illustrated in the movie “Babette’s Feast”, it’s unwise to compromise with pedestrian catering! Make your event a visual and sensory experience to remember.

During my 20 years in ASX100 companies I learnt that the project management of a corporate event can be successful, yet sadly will leave no memory of that moment. Our aim is to:

  • celebrate milestones
  • acknowledge an outcome
  • share the company’s vision
  • develop lasting relationships, or
  • remember a moment in time.

Corporate events need to share the same vision as your company. You need to find a way to weave your message via sensory and culinary delights so that your guests are:

  • full and satisfied
  • impressed
  • surprised
  • wildly challenged

Many stuffy corporate events fail to leave an impression because they didn’t inject the beguiling mix of fanciful and grounded sensory experiences. The idea is to lead your guests to a final point of subliminal dedication and emotional commitment that embodies your company’s vision.

What’s The Plan For Your Next Corporate Function?

The Big Picture

You have been given the go-ahead for a corporate event for a specific reason. Here are a few tips to help you create a successful event.

​Align The Elements: Link the purpose of the event (fun, legal, actions, culture building), the company culture and vision to the look, feel and style of the function.


The Theme:  Is there a theme for the event? Adding a theme can add life to the function and make it memorable.​

aMBUSH Gallery

Measurability Factors:  Are you expected to meet some expectations by hosting this event? Ask management what outcomes they expect so you can put things in place to measure your success.

​Plan Ahead:  Give yourself plenty of time to find the right service providers who can work at your chosen venue. The good ones are already booked months in advance so plan early.

Time Management: ​ The length of the event can often dictate the venue. If for example your function is a company update, within business hours, with minimal down time for employees, no alcohol allowed, then you’ll need to course a venue close to headquarters.

However if the function is a thank you to valued clients or customers, the function may be longer, a sit down three-course meal, on a weekend so partners can attend, with alcoholic offerings and entertainment.

Islandti_kai_atmosphere (2004)

​Location And Venues: ​ A lot of venues have a resident caterer, AV teams, and support staff so be sure to check what resources are available to you when booking service providers. They can usually help you with:

  • Logistics
  • Catering
  • Printing
  • Themes
  • Invitations
  • Bookings
  • Travel
  • Accommodation
  • Speakers
  • Entertainment
  • AV
  • Filming
  • Advertising & Marketing
  • Communication

Hyde Park Barracks

Customising Your Catering

Once you have worked out what the feel and format is for your event, the fun part is aligning your catering to match expectations. Don’t forget that you are bringing different elements to life that that align and complement your company’s purpose.

Case Study:

The CEO of our financial services division, in the first year of when he started, wanted a fun event for employees around money.

The venue created a gambling room and the food was themed to money. We had chocolate money and food was shaped as roulettes. Everyone was encouraged to dress up with the CEO lead the way, wearing a roulette tutu. The theme, dress code and catering set the fun tone for the night.


Plan To Please The Majority

Planning a corporate event can be draining on staff who not only need to attend the function but also “work” the room. It’s good to keep the following outcomes in mind:

For guests:

  • have fun
  • communicate across teams
  • see the fun side of the corporate environment rather than red tape
  • seeing management as approachable and willing to engage

For  management:

  • ​have fun
  • acknowledge employees and objectives met
  • engage with employees in a more casual environment
  • be open to feedback in a safe, non-threatening environment

It’s up to you now!

So get planning and have fun with it! There’s a lot to do and partnering with the right service provider will make the event enjoyable for everyone.


More about the author

Kim Jones is a non executive director on private company, government and not-for-profit boards.

Kim is also a management consultant, with more than 30 years experience with roles including superannuation trustee, investor relations and communications specialist with ASX100 institutional fund managers and financial services companies. The earlier part of her career was spent as a marine scientist, high school teacher as well as promoting new technology at the University of New South Wales.

Kim holds a Bachelor of Science (Honours) degree from the University of Sydney, a Graduate Diploma of Education, and is a Graduate of the Australian Institute of Company Directors (GAICD).

6 Tech Trends for your next Corporate Event

Date Posted: 17/05/2016 9:15:33 AM
Posted By: Tara Connolly

Outstanding Tech Ideas for your next Corporate Event

Technology is behind the running of businesses across many industries today. Unfortunately technology is often underused in the events industry. If you’re someone who doesn’t utilise tech so well, this post is for you. Here’s 6 tech trends that will make your next corporate event, meeting or cocktail event instagrammable and worth remembering.


What a set up.. The Ben Lexcen Terrace.. AMAZING! @anmmuseum stunning! #events #Friyay #Funday #Christmasparties #Sydneycatering #DarlingHarbour

A photo posted by Laissez-faire Catering (@laissez_faire_catering) on


#1 Venue Hunting

Venue hunting was digitised a long time ago. But some more recent apps filter these venues by city, price, capacity and other considerations.

You can also find the perfect venue by asking your caterer! Check out some of our eye-catching venues here.


In awe on the AMAZING #SydneyUniVenues just spectacular! The quadrangle is one hidden gem! @sydneyuniquevenues #Sydney #venues #events #bespoke

A photo posted by Laissez-faire Catering (@laissez_faire_catering) on


#2 Social Ambassadors

If you want to start some social interaction and increase the number of viewers on your site, get a social ambassador. Social media presence equals exposure, brand recognition and advertising.

Remember the campaign needs to be before, during and after the event. Show the purpose of the event as well as the fun side of it all and don’t forget some behind-the-scenes photos. What better way to get people talking about your event than posting mouth-watering food photos?


Lunch time canapés! Delicious #events #eventvenue #eventcatering #canapés

A photo posted by Laissez-faire Catering (@laissez_faire_catering) on


#3 Live Streaming

Live streaming is in. Twitter has Periscope while Facebook has their new live video feature. Update your fans and followers with what’s happening as it happens. This would work well for corporate meetings announcing a new product release. Viewers will feel like they are part of the event and it’s a great way to stay relevant in the overcrowded social world. 

ATP Atrium Atug

#4 Event Apps

Event planning apps can compliment your own event planning style if used correctly. These apps make it easy to record what you need, when you need it, budget and time management. After the event it can also act as an evaluation of every aspect of your event.

Feedback is also made easier with the use of apps. Remember when event organisers used to hand out printed evaluation surveys? Event planning apps make this process convenient and more enjoyable.

LF Maritime museumyots set up

#5 iBeacon

iBeacon is a new Apple technology (although we’re not here to promote Apple) that is expected to trend this year. In the events industry, this technology is one easy way to connect a roomful of people. One of its major benefit is its networking capabilities. Attendees can easily foster new business connections with other guests.


#6 Digital Souvenirs

Although guests appreciate a physical souvenir and really awesome gift bags from time to time, a good way to stay up-to-date in event planning and technology is to use digital souvenirs. It’s trendy, new and it frees up some time during planning.

You can give out online coupons or set up a discount code which guests can use at your store of choice. This means less clutter, an environmentally friendly gift and less budget spent on party favours.

Tuna canape

What other tech trends have influenced your event planning? Will you use any of these ideas at your next corporate event? Leave us know!

Click on the banner below to  view our  Conference Menu and keep those weekly meetings interesting!


Corporate Event Planning

Date Posted: 24/04/2016 3:54:34 PM
Posted By: Tara Connolly

Planning your Next Corporate Meeting

Nothing is worse than a corporate meeting with bland food, a sad venue and a dull atmosphere. You want your employees to enjoy going to monthly and quarterly corporate meetings. Corporate meetings don’t have to be a chore, all you have to do is plan them right.

900ATPExhibition Hall - Bar.JPG

Many large companies today are hiring event planners and other event staff to get the most out of their meetings. Corporate events and meetings have evolved into something that even busy people can appreciate. They should be well planned, trendy and awe-inspiring.

So what’s the secret to successful corporate meetings time and time again? It’s as simple as making a plan and hiring the right people!

Stress-free corporate event planning

The very first and most common advice you would have already heard is to plan ahead. Nothing beats planning ahead to get to the best venue and staff. Hire the best caterer before their calendars become too busy to accommodate you. Here are some other tips to consider when planning for your next corporate meeting:

#1 Unique corporate catering menu

When it comes to the menu, your caterer can suggest hundreds of ideas although your input can help shape the overall event. The menu can vary depending on the time of day, the number of guests or the type of meeting.


Entrees plated, this wedding was absolutely perfect! Summer menu, fresh food. #weddings #coogeeslsc #coogeebeach #coogeewedding #beautiful #food

A photo posted by Laissez-faire Catering (@laissez_faire_catering) on


One great option is a local-inspired menu. You’ll be helping local growers and suppliers while providing some great food for the corporate meeting. Remember, satisfied palates make attentive listeners.

By the way, stay tuned for our new Winter Menu being released soon!

#2 Theme ideas

You can always have  a theme for your corporate meetings. These themes aren’t the usual type wherein you’ll ask guests to dress the part. For corporate events, you simply need one central theme or idea to pull all the details together. This could be a cocktail hour, an all-healthy menu or a green and sustainable event. Of course venues can inspire the theme as well.

#3 Power break

Longer meetings may require more than one meal. Power breaks can really help keep an event or meeting flowing and ensure meeting goers aren’t being given too much information too quickly. You may offer coffees and pick-me-up foods during this time or even simple biscuits, cheese and crackers. Don’t forget to consider dietary requirements.


#4 Headcount, budget

You can’t plan everything without knowing the number of guests and the budget. Also, guest counts are need for your venue. So finalise this first before making the big decisions for the event. And you can even ask your caterer to base the menu on the budget you have. But of course don’t let quality be sacrificed, there are plenty of menus that are budget friendly but still look and taste expensive.


“After a good dinner one can forgive anybody, even one’s own relations.” – Oscar Wilde #dinner #greatevents #cateringsydney

A photo posted by Laissez-faire Catering (@laissez_faire_catering) on


#5 Attendee engagement

Your corporate meeting should always zero down to this - attention to the agenda. You held the meeting for a purpose so you should provide an overall experience that can foster engagement and brainstorming. Use powerpoint slides, live feeds, video conferencing, workshops, event-specific apps and event hashtags to keep everyone interested and participating.

#6 Venue

You can give your usual conference room a remodel or you can opt for a venue outside the office. Check out these corporate venues for ideas:


These are just a few of our venues! Check out the rest  here.


What a stunning view #anmm #m#anmmuseum #events #catering #laissez_faire_catering #christmas

A photo posted by Laissez-faire Catering (@laissez_faire_catering) on


Are you ready to take your corporate meetings to a whole new level? Contact the laissez-faire team today to discuss your event.


Need some menu inspiration? Click on the banner below to access our  Conference menu  which has some great options for your next corporate  event.


Planning your 2016 Office Christmas Party

Date Posted: 12/02/2016 8:59:00 AM
Posted By: Tara Connolly

'Tis the Season to be Prepared

 Maritime Museum event 2

If you think it’s too early to be planning your end-of-year office Christmas party then you’re wrong! The holidays may be 10 months away but now is the best time to start thinking about it and booking everything in. But be warned: other companies are doing the same thing, so book your catering and venues as soon as possible! The earlier you start to plan for your corporate Christmas party, the more options will be available to you.

Plan now and you’ll avoid these mini-disasters:

  • Last-minute preparations
  • Holding the party at the office, where there might not be enough room
  • Bad entertainment
  • Inadequate food 

It’s all about the feeling!

Ask your coworkers what they thought about 2015’s Christmas party. Chances are there were some things they loved and some things they think could be changed. Use their feedback as a jumping off point for planning the 2016 party.

What makes your Christmas party different from all other parties your employees have attended? Keep in mind no amount of good music or skilled acrobatic entertainment can hide bad food or a wrong choice of venue. Everything needs to be up to standard to create an overall successful feeling.

This feeling can be achieved by forging connections that speak to the culture of your company and employees. For example, a geeky theme for an IT or web company could be a huge hit. If the entertainment and service reflect the desires of the company and workers, you can expect good feedback after the event.


Fast-forward to December - do you see yourself stress free and already enjoying the party or running around at the last minute to pull everything together? If it’s the former, well done! That means you’ve decided to start planning now. Here are some tips to get the ball rolling:

1. Choose the date

Choose a date that won’t interfere with family celebrations or vacations. The date is perhaps the most important thing to get right, as you’ll want as many employees as possible to make it to the event.You’ll also be making plenty of calls too to the venue provider, the caterer, the entertainer and to other miscellaneous event providers. You’ll need to give these contacts a date for your party so they can plan accordingly.

2. Get out of the office, book the venue

The office is first and foremost a working environment. If possible, book a trendy venue for the party. Your workers should feel like they are part of something special, not just having drinks at the office. Remember that venues book fast, so decide now and have it marked for your event. Choose one that is accessible, big enough to accommodate all of you and one that suits your party of choice.Since you’re booking early, there is a chance you will be getting a discount on your venue and the facilities it offers.

3. Choose an impressive menu

Impressive does not mean expensive. Your caterer can still create interesting food without you going over the budget.

You can design your menu based on the party theme. Other guests would appreciate different food stations while food trucks can also be a hit. Of course take into consideration dietary and health requirements of your guests. Most caterers will adjust to these requirements.

Download examples from our extensive range of menu options.

4. Don’t forget the drinks

It’s a Christmas party; people will be hoping to unwind and have fun. Diversify your bar offerings or choose one signature cocktail to stay within budget. Check out our cocktail and refreshments menus for some thirst-quenching ideas.

5. Set the mood 

Make it festive with a hint of professionalism. Use lighting to create the kind of mood you want. Your playlist could be a mix of traditional holiday songs and popular music. You can opt for a live band or use the sound system.

Of course no event is easy to put together and it will probably take you more than 5 steps. That’s why now is the best time to start if you are hoping for a memorable corporate Christmas party in 2016.

The Perfect Venue

The venue is one of the most important aspects of your Christmas party and your choice will depend on how many guests are attending your event and what kind of event it will be.

Maritime Museum event 3

If your Christmas do is going to be a cocktail event where guests can stand up and mingle, these venues might suit (follow links for more info):

If you have any enquiries about our menus, venues or planning your 2016 Christmas party, contact us here.

Click  on the banner below to access our Shared  menu for some refreshing ideas for your Christmas party.