Sofitel Melbourne On Collins renovates Ballrooms with Show Technology

Posted on Friday, December 18th, 2009

Award-winning Sofitel Melbourne On Collins now offers extraordinary new venues following the completion of major renovations to its conference spaces on the 1st and 35th levels, setting a new standard in unparalleled flexibility from one of Melbourne’s largest integrated conference hotels.

Once known as The Terrace, the La Trobe Ballroom has evolved from an open terrace to self-contained ballroom with the addition of a roof and sound proofing for maximum quiet and focus. Striking in its height and elevation, the ‘sky light to black-out’ feature ceiling is as technically impressive as it is spectacular. Centrally controlled via touch pad, presentations remain commanding with automatic audio-visual equipment whilst theming is equally instantaneous with special lighting features. A dedicated kitchen and inbuilt service bar, provides the most efficient catering service with a world class menu. Décor is vibrant, modernistic and slightly retro with colours predominantly neutral to earthy tones with hints of red.

At the end of the first floor promenade in its private position is the Fitzroy Ballroom, formerly The Carillon room. Rich in ambience and design, the room is pillarless for optimal vantage and enhanced capacity and features state of the art capabilities including individual table lighting. The especially designed carpet and wallpaper in colours of deep aubergine with hints of rose gold make this is a room that reflects a refined sense of style, elegance and occasion.

In house audio visual suppliers Audio Visual Dynamics are delighted with their new surrounds and are particularly enthused by their new lighting system in the La Trobe Ballroom which includes thirty-eight Martin MX-10 scanners.

“They’re still the best lighting product on the market for this type of installation,” said Lynton Gellatly, group operations manager. ”They colour the walls, ceiling, floors as well as the tables. They’re bright, punchy, fast and also quiet. They’re a cost effective unit too.”

The ceiling of the La Trobe Ballroom features triangular shapes and it was designed around the MX-10 so that they can be masked from view. A series of trenches through the ceiling hide the MX-10’s as well as the speakers.

”You don’t know that the MX-10’s are there until they start doing their tricks,” remarked Lynton. “The Fitzroy Ballroom was not so extensively refurbished and consequently the MX-10s hang in full view.”

Both the La Trobe Ballroom and the Fitzroy Ballroom utilize a dozen Pro Shop LED par cans each.

”I just needed something to light the dance floors,” said Lynton. “They provide flash and colour in the centre but are reasonably discreet in their appearance. Bang for buck, you can’t beat them.”

An MA Lighting grandMA ultra light was purchased for control in La Trobe whilst a grandMA micro was chosen for the Fitzroy.

”I have a long history with grandMA consoles and I’ve always been a fan of them,” remarked Lynton. “It’s a proven console and is very common so it’s easy to find operators. Basically, there’s been no need to want to change. I also like to keep things fairly uniform supplier wise. Show Technology has always looked after me well as a buyer and I’m a loyal supporter.”

Whilst Lynton specified and designed the lighting system credit must go to Sash Borizovski who installed the gear and made everything happen.