ICWF 2016 Comes to a Close with The GIWA Awards with Winners in 27 categories
by EVENTFAQS Bureau Business Events | August 8, 2016 | News
The International Convention of the Wedding Fraternity (ICWF) 2016 concluded with the Great Indian Wedding Awards (GIWA) on August 5 at the Fairmont Jaipur. The Awards recognised the work of wedding planners, venues and vendors in 27 categories for exemplary work in the last year. The Awards were preceded by 3 days of high octane sessions, beautifully crafted networking events and entertainment evenings that offered something to all who attended. Delegates at ICWF, which took place from August 3 to 5, included wedding and event planners, venue owners, entertainers, and vendors including caterers, florists, make-up artists and others in wedding planning ecology. The goal of ICWF is to provide a forum where pioneers, leaders, mature players, and fresh entrants get together to share their aspirations, accomplishments and achievements.
Partners and sponsors at ICWF this year included Rixos Hotels, EMF, Swarovski, EY, Kurl-on, Gulmohar by Taluka’s, Taluka Tent Decorators, Camas, EEMA, and Everything Experiential.
Remarking upon the success of this year’s event, Samit Garg, Founder-Director, E-Factor & SkyWaltz said, “We are glad that ICWF 2016 was effectively able to establish a bond of solidarity amongst the industry members. We had people from over 12 countries and we were proudly able to present a wonderful India - full of creativity, enthusiasm and hospitality. The presence of all the industry peers was an absolute delight and the content curated was hugely appreciated by all across.”
The entertainment at each evening was top-notch and featured Shilpa Rao on Day One; the Vyas Brothers and Harshdeep Kaur on Day Two; and Hard Kaur, Akhi Sachdeva, Jyotsna and Santosh on Day Three.
Hosted by Geetika Ganju Dhar, the sessions at ICWF delved deep into the business of wedding planning, while also showcasing key developments in design, flower arrangement, destination weddings and more.
Day One began with a networking evening, ‘Sundower’, at Nahargarh Fort, followed by dinner at the recently opened Gulmohar by Taluka Tents.
Day Two featured sessions all day by eminent speakers, beginning with the Keynote by Sabbas Joseph, President, EEMA in which he spoke at length about the wedding planning industry and its growth in recent years. The next session ‘Designing the Social Space’ was moderated by Samit Garg, Founder Director, E-Factor & Skywaltz and saw speakers Geeta Samuel of Q Events by Geeta Samuel; Sanjeev Shankar; and set designer Sumant Jayakrishnan elaborated profusely on what different social events demand from design. Each speaker showcased examples of their work that best brought to light what’s at the heart of each of their design philosophies. The session titled “The Effective Use of Social Media in the Space Private Social Events’ was moderated by Roshan Abbas, Managing Director, Geometry Global Encompass Network where speakers Siddharth Bapna, Founder, WedTalk and Ginny Kohli, Founder and CEO, WedWise emphasised the potential of social media to generate positive word of mouth about an event, while providing wedding planners a platform to grow their business. The session also briefly covered elements of a good social media strategy, listing some of the things planners can do to get the most out of their channels. Post lunch, Veronique Dussault and Brian Tellis, Director, Fountainhead Promotions and Events spoke on ‘More to Bite – India’s Increasing Appetite for International Event’, where some recent events which have brought down large international acts were in focus, while the speakers also spoke more broadly upon the Indian market for these acts at social events, highlighting opportunities as well as challenges faced. ‘The New World of Destination Weddings’, again moderated by Samit Garg, saw speakers Lakshyaraj Singh Mewar, Aditya Motwane, Director, Motwane Entertainment and Weddings and wedding and social event planner Satish Ramnani share on key developments in destination weddings, including new destinations and the attractions they offer.
Day Three began with a session by the celebrated David Lee Beahm, David Beahm Experiences, who in ‘Planning for Perfection: The Business of Wedding Design’, spoke about the ‘6 C’s’ of Wedding Design, focussing specifically on what planners must do and what they must deliver from a business point of view. In ‘Nostalgia of Lenses’ featuring photographers Sephi Bergerson and Ashish Chawla, two very different approaches to wedding photography were presented. Candid photography focusing on special moments as captured by the photographer were contrasted with highly staged photography that’s akin to modelling photo shoots. The strengths of each were discussed, while the well-known photographers also shared about what they wanted from planners and what can be done to strengthen the relationship between planners and photographers. Aarti Matto, Chairperson, Momentum Group moderated the session ‘From the Winners Table’, where she first spoke to Vijay Arora, Touchwood Weddings on Delhi as the next big wedding destination, and then to the photographer Ram on what’s new in photography as well as what budgets planners should keep in mind for photographers and videographers. ‘India @ Large’ had speakers representing South India, Gujarat and West Bengal, who spoke about the nuances of wedding planning in their respective regions and states. Speakers included Rajesh Gopinath, Founder, Wish Tree Weddings and Rakhi Kankaria, Founder and Director, Rachnoutsav Events representing South India – they spoke about key elements of South Indian weddings and what’s changing. Florist Baisakhi Ghosh, and Avinash Singhania, Director, Encore Events waxed poetic on Indian heritage and using design to bring out emotions at weddings in Calcutta. Finally, Keyur Patel, Prasang Events and Jaydeep Mehta, CMD, World Wide Weddings went over Gujarati hospitality at weddings, the business of wedding planning in Gujarat and what elements make up for the absence of alcohol. ‘Hosting Hospitality and Inurement’ saw Toni Abou Ghazaly of The Agenda Beirut talk about how hospitality can make or break an event. He also spoke about what his institute does to inculcate a practical understanding of hospitality at events. Finally, the ‘Big Bang Events’ featured Carla Marques of Filmmaster Events share on story telling at events and crafting the unexpectedly beautiful at events.
The GIWA Awards which followed the last day’s sessions were a tremendous success and saw awards given out in categories including Wedding of the Year, Best Wedding Reception, Best Destination Wedding of the Year (International), Best Destination Wedding of the Year (India), Best Wedding Moments, Best Infrastructure Provider, Best Use of Pyrotechnics, Best Wedding Invites and more.
On GIWA, Garg added, “GIWA 2016 saw mostly all the relevant companies participate with full zest and the sparkle of the new Swarovski trophies got smiles on all faces who eventually possessed them. The level of competition has scaled up in many ways and we are sure that 2017 would be a year of new reckonings. God Willing!”
ICWF 2016 took place at Fairmont Jaipur from August 3 to 5. In addition to GIWA , ICWF featured great sessions over 2 days and entertainment by Shilpa Rao, the Vyas Brothers, Harshdeep Kaur, and more.