The last few weeks have been very much about staging events for us here at the Celtic Manor Resort.
On a beautifully sunny Saturday in the middle of June we welcomed guests to Motorpoint Polo at the Manor – the fifth staging of a sporting and social event that has now become a real fixture on our calendar.
We entertain more than a thousand people in the hospitality areas – the majority enjoying a three-course lunch in a huge marquee pavilion and others enjoying gourmet polo picnics in the surrounding private pods.
What has been great to see in recent years is the growth of numbers enjoying the action in the general admission spectator areas on the other sides of the Polo Field. More than 2,000 additional guests took advantage of this opportunity, giving the whole arena a really vibrant feel and showing polo is an occasion that can be enjoyed by everyone.
The numbers of people and the glorious sunshine contributed to a wonderful festival atmosphere for what was our best polo event yet.
We were lucky with the weather again when we staged the Celebrity Cup sponsored by Bulmers on the first two days of July. This is another event that has grown over the last few years and become a firm favourite not just for ourselves but for the celebrities who participate and the spectators who come to watch them.
Many of the celebrities, like Wales captain Rob Brydon, have been ever-present since the tournament began four years ago but it’s always good to add fresh faces like James Nesbitt, who made his debut for Ireland in this year’s competition.
Unfortunately, the returning Gareth Bale could not inspire the home nation to a repeat of their tournament victory on his last appearance in 2015 but Mike Tindall’s England team were worthy champions after beating Scotland in the final.
It’s always really pleasing to hear many of the stars describe the Celebrity Cup as one of their favourite weekends of the year and we’ve also seen many messages on social media showing how much the spectators enjoy this unique opportunity to get close to some of their favourite stars from sport and showbiz. Importantly, the event also raised more than £40,000 for the Marie Keating Foundation, the cancer charity dedicated to the memory of Ronan Keating’s mother.
While staging events is very much part of our DNA at Celtic Manor, holding two of our largest outdoor events within the space of a fortnight called for a special effort from all of our teams who support their organisation and smooth running.
In between the two, we somehow found time to hold a Building Brilliance Gala Dinner to celebrate the groundbreaking on construction of the new ICC Wales. The First Minister of Wales Carwyn Jones joined Sir Terry Matthews and other dignitaries to cut the ceremonial turf and launch this exciting project which will have such a huge impact for us all when it opens in 2019.
After all that, it would be nice to say we can now all put our feet up and enjoy a quiet period but the resort and the hospitality business never works that way!
These events merely herald the start of summer and we’re looking forward to welcoming thousands of families over the holiday period to fill our hotel bedrooms and our Hunter Lodges. This year, we’ve added All Bounced Out inflatables to our fantastic range of adventure activities so there’s never been a better time to come and enjoy a family break at Celtic Manor.
If you haven’t got time to stay, our activities, golf courses, spa and restaurants are always available for guests just to pop in for the day. We look forward to seeing you!