Sanford International Staff Conference


By Brett Jowett

Well the 2016 Sanford International Staff Conference went off with a bang this year, many saying it was our best ever! I think I would agree with that.

At the end of each year we host a conference over a weekend for the staff allowing them to bring their spouse/partner and combine the business sessions with our Christmas Dinner. This year we flew to the Gold Coast staying at the Sheraton Grand Mirage and I have to say they have really done a great job with their refurbishment.

The guest rooms are extremely spacious with large windows that can be opened letting in the cool sea breeze and if it gets too hot simply close the windows and crank up the AC. The experience starts as soon as you arrive. The entrance and lobby have an assortment of trendy and comfortable furnishings that once you sit down you know you are in a 5 Star Resort.

Located on Main Beach and across the road from Marina Mirage you have the best of everything available. A morning walk along the beach followed by a swim and in the afternoon a bit of shopping finishing with a sunset drink. Mixing business with pleasure we received great service from the Convention Services team for our meeting requirement as well as the resort staff from the front desk to the swim up pool bar during our down time.

We will definitely be recommending this resort to our clients. Keeping the business sessions fun and interesting we sort the services of Byron Kurth from MAD (Managing Australian Destinations) to run our Team Building Activity.

Our staff of 19 were split up into 3 teams and we rented small boats to navigate a treasure hunt of sorts on the Broadwater. Byron set us the task of answering questions, taking photos and finding clues along the way. The day started at Marina Mirage finishing at the Southport Yacht Club for lunch with the presentation of prizes for the highest score and best dressed, well it was a Nautical Theme after all. Our staff only dinner was held at Misono Japanese Steakhouse in the Surfers Paradise Marriott Resort & Spa. The evening started with drinks hosted by Mr Kerry Fowler, Senior Business Development Manager, before dinner.

Once seated around two teppanyaki tables the show started with our chefs preparing dinner in front of us to the sound of music that put us all in a good mood to the point where each table had a dance off. I declare a draw. Sunday afternoon and the realisation that all good things must come to an end as we loaded onto our private transfer to Coolangatta Airport for our return flight home with Virgin Australia. Thanks to the Sanford Travel Team for getting into the spirit of the weekend where we all got to know each other a whole lot more.

William Nghiem