Sydney’s The Star will host the coveted Australian Academy of Cinema Television and Arts (AACTA) Awards in its new Event Centre in January 2013.
The Star’s partnership with the AACTA Awards was revealed at a media conference this week at the Darling Hotel.
The AACTA Awards is the first major event to be announced for The Star’s $100 million multi-purpose entertainment and events venue which is scheduled for completion at the end of the 2012.
“The newly established AACTA Awards are delighted to be the first major public event at The Star Event Centre which is a much needed and welcome addition to Australia’s entertainment and convention landscape,” said AFI | AACTA CEO, Damian Trewhella.
“With both The Star and AACTA bringing some of Australia’s and the world’s most celebrated screen icons to Sydney; this partnership is the perfect fit.”
The Event Centre is the final component of The Star’s recent $870 million redevelopment and transformation into a total leisure and entertainment destination.
Built on the rooftop of The Star with views over Sydney Harbour and the city skyline, the venue has been designed to host A-list acts from around the world in intimate concert settings as well as domestic and international conferences, exhibitions and awards functions.
Also announced were the 2nd AACTA Awards nominees, as well as the official dates for the AACTA Awards.
Multi-use in every sense, it will be able to accommodate 4000 patrons in concert mode, 3000 with half seating, up to 1200 in a banquet or ballroom setting and 1300 people in conference/business mode. The 2,400 square metre column-free space will be the largest banquet area of any hotel in Sydney making it ideal for gala dinners and award ceremonies.
Describing the venue as a major asset for the people of Sydney, managing director of The Star, Frederic Luvisutto, said the Event Centre will help fill a void in the local convention market and will give the city an edge in the competition for entertainment events both around the country and globally.
“This new venue fulfils our aspiration to make The Star a one-of-a-kind leisure and entertainment destination with multiple reasons to visit. We already have the 2,000-seat Lyric Theatre for musicals and major theatre productions and soon we will have a specialised venue like no other,” Mr Luvisutto said.
A feature of the Event Centre is its distinctive gemstone shape and translucent glass shell exterior. The use of backlighting within the glass façade will allow the venue to morph into different colours at night making it highly visible from various corners of the city.
“Architecturally this new facility is unique in design, but what makes it even rarer is the placement of such a heavy structure on top of an existing building, including the casino floor below,” Luvisutto said.
The venue will have the ability to convert to various configurations with a quick turnaround time between each function or event. To create a ballroom environment, 720 retractable theatre seats can be quickly and readily stored to obtain a 1077sq m flat floor space.
Concert-goers will be welcomed in a modern elegant lobby which can also cater for cocktail parties and a variety of private functions. In addition, the concert venue will offer four VIP suites with a premium viewing platform, bringing VIP guests closer to the stage complete with their own exclusive bar and dining service.
The Star’s redevelopment has seen the opening of a new five star boutique hotel, The Darling, a luxury day spa, several signature restaurants and bars and a collection of high end retail outlets. Other changes include new gaming facilities and The Star’s new international nightclub, Marquee, which is located on the third level of the harbourside entrance on Pirrama Road.
With construction running ahead of schedule, the venue is expected to open at the end of the year.
Luvisutto said The Star was in the process of confirming the initial line-up of concert and conference bookings which will be announced in the coming weeks.