Flames of the Forest – Australia’s only permanent off-site rainforest venue producing stunning business events in tropical Far North Queensland – has undergone a spectacular refurbishment in preparation for an exceptional 2018.
Combining magnificent local produce with a spectacular candle-lit setting and offering a fantastic selection of entertainment and impressive special effects for up to 800 guests, the iconic Flames of the Forest received a full venue makeover to modernise the magnificent rainforest setting.
General Manager Natalie Johnson said the Flames of the Forest team spent 10 days immersed in the rainforest to transform the venue with new fixtures and smart technology.
“It’s always a daunting task refurbishing in the rainforest, particularly given we had to completely gut the venue of the existing chandeliers, lighting rigs, crystal curtains and silk lining before we could even proceed with building all the new fixtures,” Johnson said.
“The entire process was an exceptional team effort, with the construction of six new, custom-designed chandeliers whose crystals appear to float in mid-air, the design and creation of new crystal curtaining with bud light feature globes and a full installation of new, state-of-the-art lighting.
“Each chandelier has its own, colour-changing LED fixture and the space now features several intelligent fixtures creating a fantastic dancefloor which also has the capability to project company logos for that extra bit of branding.”
The installation of new, flowing black silk into the ceiling completed the refurbishment process, with the challenge of undertaking such a massive makeover in an outdoor rainforest setting presenting plenty of challenges.
“Unlike refurbishing a normal venue, we had to deal with the tropical heat, rain, mozzies, bugs, spiders and even a curious monitor lizard keen to see what all the fuss was about, in a remote location with no mobile phone reception to get the job done,” Johnson said.
“But the results were well worth it, with the new look providing a mesmerising element to the stunning rainforest backdrop.”
Johnson said the evolution of Flames of the Forest in the World Heritage-listed Daintree Rainforest over the past 13 years has been incredibly exciting.
“We feel as if we have raised a child to adulthood – it was a proud and exhilarating moment to flick the switch and see the marquee come to life and look so breathtaking,” Johnson said.
“It made all that time sweating it out up a scissor lift worth it!”
Johnson said Flames of the Forest was inspired to invest in its first major refurbishment in five years by the significant interest in the destination largely generated by recent substantial investments by major operators in Port Douglas.
“Major tourism operators including Sheraton Mirage Port Douglas, Crystalbrook Superyacht Marina, Quicksilver and Hartley’s Creek Crocodile Adventures have invested hundreds of millions of dollars in refurbishing their products recently which has created significant interest in the business events sector both domestically and internationally,” Johnson said.
“Our bookings for this season and beyond show significant growth in our traditional domestic, North America and Western Europe business and incentive markets compared to previous years which gives us the confidence to reinvigorate our remarkable rainforest venue.
“Port Douglas has become the flavour of the month once again for the lucrative MICE market and we want to do all we can to showcase our amazing destination to the world.”