Two nights, two themes, one tent.
In a public parking lot for a popular local beach in southern California, Elite Productions International, Laguna Niguel, Calif., created a venue for a glam rock event one night and a punk rock event the next. The client, hosting a conference at the hotel across the street, required a venue that would accommodate more than 2,000 guests each night, complete with food, drinks and headline entertainment. Elite’s crew installed a 120-by-100-foot custom black tent that acted as the backdrop for the separate themes. “We used each event’s headline entertainment and style of music for our inspiration for the different themes,” says Lili Shadab, president and creative director for Elite.
The location provided challenges, including parking meters, planters and large trees, as well as the need to provide tight security, which was required for the private event being held in a busy public area. The crew leveled the planters with subflooring, installed custom covers over the parking meters and included the trees as a decor element. “The parking lot was in the middle of some of the most expensive properties on the southern California coast so we had to be mindful of residences and noise restrictions,” Shadab says. “And since the lot was public property we also had to be sure to stay out of the way of daily beach goers during setup, change of theme decor and takedown.”
The hardwood subflooring added a rock and roll industrial aesthetic that suited both events. The crew also set up more than 50 high cocktail tables and numerous seating vignettes inside and outside. To change the decor from one event to the other, in addition to changing the lighting and floral arrangements, Elite installed 10 different primary seating vignettes for each night using themed furniture, as well as varying the floor plan and switching out the bars. As soon as the first event was finished the crew began taking down the glam rock theme decor and replacing it with that of a punk rock street vibe.
“Having a black tent really lent itself to each theme and created a huge impact,” Shadab says.