Melbourne is one of my favourite cities to visit. I've never had a bad holiday when I've been there & even though my last visit was for THE MAMA SORORITY Workshop it wasn't all work...there was plenty of play.
I left the Gold Coast at 7.15am (which meant I got up at 4.30am!!) and after a quick stop to pick up my Personal Assistant (aka...Jane my friend), we headed to the airport! Now I'll admit I was skeptical because Jane had booked our flights with Jetstar (aka the worst airline in the world apparently), and I HATE TO FLY...so if something was going to go wrong today would be the day. Surprisingly, I'd now suggest flying Jetstar again...EVERYTHING went smoothly. No delays, great in flight staff, on board magazines & on my flight home I was surprised with a $5 inflight voucher (aka a free bottle of water & a packet of pretzels). Thanks Jetstar & Jane!!
Our hotel of choice was Sheraton in Little Collins Street. It was perfect! Central location, great staff, large rooms (with the most amazing shower head in the shower) and a Terrace Bar on the rooftop has a with a fantastic fireplace, a spectaular city view and most importantly a wonderful drinks menu.
We checked in with ease thanks to Sheraton's Starwood Preferred Guest program (I highly recommend joining) and our room had the usual amenities, two queen size beds, TV, stocked mini bar, large bathroom, and free WiFi. There's also a fitness centre, indoor heated pool, steam room and spa. The Spa offers everything from a full day of relaxation and rejuvination to a signature beauty treatment or massage. The hotel has its own restaurant, Little Collins St Kitchen (which offers a seafood hot/cold buffet and also menu service). Jane & I had the buffet and it was 5 star.
Like I said before, I've never had a bad holiday in Melbourne and I've never had a bad meal. Even the side streets and hidden cafes offer some on the best food I've eaten anywhere in the world (okay, except that time in Positano when we ate mussels caught literally 10 minutes before lunch). If you're a food lover or just like to eat them Melbourne is a must place to visit.
The whole reason we went to Melbourne was to flatlay, network & collaborate with amazing women in business and on we all met at the historical building The George in St Kilda. The venue was One Space Two, and Nina who looked after us was brilliant! If you're looking for a stylish venue (there's a fully stocked bar) then I'd highly recommend getting in contact with them. Nina was there to meet with us the day before the event, to run through everything, and she was with us throughout the entire day, refilling water jugs, clearing plates, programming the music and visuals and helping in any way possible. The George is easy to get to by tram, there is a rear exit for deliveries and the space is large enough to hold over 100 guests.
Having to stand in front of 45 women meant I needed to look "superstar" ready and thanks to a 5.30am hair & makeup call from Natalie Pillios @nataliepillios_huma I looked pretty darn amazing. Natalie rocked up to the hotel with a kit that made me feel like I was backstage at New York Fashion Week & her gorgeous personality was perfect for my pre workshop butterflies. Natalie is a true biz mum, and a true professional (I think she's made me a fake eyelashes convert).
So many truly wonderful women came together to make our workshop, a day to remember. We had a dessert table that was to die for thanks to Frosted By Nicci @frostedbynicci who made the most magnificent and decadent three tiered cake I've ever tasted, along with our very own THE MAMA SORORITY & #girlboss cookies. Narmi from My Cake Studio @mycakestudio1 had cupcakes that looked too good to eat (although that didn't stop us...not a single one was left over), Macaron Love @_macaronlove_ spoilt us with tantalizing flavours (pink champagne, pina colada & green tea) PLUS the gorgeous girls from We Are Token @wearetoken delivered their mini cake in a jar delicacies (yes...in a jar).
As well as an edible feast we had a visual one too with a lot of help from Moon Shot Balloons @moonshotballoons whose balloons were the size of a small car & trimmed with chiffon & tulle (this is what little girls dream of), and Rachel from Splash Of Pretty @splashofpretty made us some stunning oversized paper flowers which looked magnificent displayed on the wall.
When the biz mums arrived, Jane handed out pink foiled name badges, that had been made by Anna @printandparty who is my all time go to business for printing, and each chair had a goodie bag filled with exclusive discounts and products ranging from bibs, nursery decor, bath products & jewellery, and Minty Magazine @mintymagazine sent down a copy of the annual edition for everyone! #spoiltwithfreebies
Alecia from Girl Bosses Australia @girlbossesau was an amazing guest speaker who had us tapping & typing on our phones while she gave us tip after tip about everything Instagram (did you know eleven hashtags is the best quantity?) Tara @babybowclub and Nicci @frostedbynicci shared their knowledge about being a mother & running a successful business, and answered some very good questions.
We ate, we laughed, we even cried at a few roller coaster ride business stories, and we connected with each other both on a personal and professional level. It was wonderful to put faces to names and physically see the amazing products that everyone brought with them to flatlay (as well as take orders).
AFTER THE EVENT
Needless to say...we were on a high afterwards, and seeing we were in Melbourne on a Friday night, we did what Melbournites to (we ate and drank) the night away.
For those of you that don't know Melbourne, The Sheraton is in the middle of everything. We literally crossed the road, walked down a lane and entered a world of live entertainment in Bourke Street. We ate at Spaghetti Tree (59 Bourke St), and I haven't stopped raving about it. The food was obviously Italian, but it was the atmosphere that you go for. Multiple colored lanterns hang from the ceiling, vintage movie posters line the velvet covered walls & a winding wooden staircase makes you feel like you're on a movie set rather than your local Italian restaurant. Like days gone by, there was a one man band serenading us, while he played the violin, keyboard and concertina (not simultaneously)! The servings were substantial, the wine was chilled and even though we were told there was a wait on service, we didn't seem to wait long at all. This family friendly, social meeting place, is a must!
Our flight home on Saturday didn't depart until after lunch, so we had enough time to do what you do in Melbourne...eat. Breakfast was at one of the hundreds of cafes in a side street, and along with bacon & eggs, several cups of coffee were consumed as we continued to talk about yesterdays event and the amazing women that had come together to make it such a huge success.
THANKS MELBOURNE FOR HAVING THE MAMA SORORITY...we'll definitly be back!