DesignContact, a New York-based firm that designs interactive business-to-business and consumer marketing experiences in engaged spaces such as exhibits, booths and meeting venues, was recently retained by The Bridge, a Dubai-based event production company, to help grow its business by offering DesignContact's unique blend of creative and design services.
Most recently, DesignContact worked with The Bridge on the launch party of the Aquitania on the World development – a $1.3 billion (U.S.) collection of private island properties in the Persian Gulf. Spread over one million square feet on the islands of France and Spain, Aquitaine is named for the medieval region that encompassed parts of the French and Spanish Atlantic coasts. In stunning oversize video projection that filled the three-story windows at the Buddha Bar in downtown Dubai, the event brought to life images of the sea and a multi-media virtual tour of the development. The specially costumed servers seemingly evolved out of these moving images as every course – featuring Spanish and French foods – were introduced.
Lest the event be remembered only for spectacle by the thousands of attendees, every element of the experience featured carefully selected elements and specially designed components that reinforced the branding and marketing messages of this unique international property.
The 2nd Middle East Meetings Industry Research Report 2008 reports that the Middle East is creating a more organized meetings industry to answer interest and demand among the international business and tourism sectors. The burgeoning industry is driving new economic growth within the region.
“Since the events industry is in its infancy, our alliance with DesignContact is a solution for having a creative edge with an established leader,” said Alex Apthorpe, founding partner, The Bridge. “We admired their work in the U.S. and wanted to have access to that knowledge pool.”
“While we have worked in international markets including Europe, South America and Asia, this is our first foray into the Middle East,” said Tony Castrigno, senior partner/CEO for DesignContact. “It's exciting to fuse together ideas with The Bridge in Dubai, where cultural expectations are for bigger and better everything – including events.”
DesignContact works with dozens of U.S. and international-based event agencies, production companies and exhibit houses to design integrated and intelligent space using architecture, media and interactivity for creative exhibitions, special events and trade shows.
The Bridge serves clients including Toyota, Novartis, IBM, Deutsche Bank and PepsiCo. Its parent company is Tasees Investment & Development, which is a partnership between the Saudi company Tamerat Al Mousa, (representing a number of Saudi business holding companies and leading private businesses in the Kingdom) and Ali Mousa and Sons Group, an established investment group with decades of successful experience in the UAE.