Ian Curley

Director of Kitchen Operations Australia, Ovolo Hotels

British-born and Australian-based, Ian Curley is one of the nation’s most awarded chefs.
With an enduring 25-year tenure in Melbourne that has seen him at the helm of some of the city’s most iconic restaurants – including nine years at The Point Albert Park and more than a decade with the European Group – Ian’s food is much-loved for its accessible approach and simple philosophy. He cooks the food he loves to eat, across all cuisines.
His signature style is European fare of the highest quality, with classic French underpinnings – a legacy from the rigorous training he received early in his career in the kitchens of London.
Currently, Ian is co-owner and chef at French Saloon and Kirk’s Wine Bar, and Director of restaurant consultancy group Exec Chef.
Ian’s skill lies in ensuring each guest receives restaurant-quality food, something he credits to a personalised, honest approach when designing his menus, and meticulous planning.
He has consulted for and worked with a number of brands including The Melbourne Racing Club’s Black Caviar Restaurant and Committee Room since 2013, Craig’s Royal Hotel in Ballarat and regular TV appearances on Channel 7’s Conviction Kitchen (which he hosted), MasterChef Australia, Yes Chef and Postcards.
Ian is a dedicated Ambassador to the Pancare Foundation and works closely with his other chosen charities, Soldier On Australia and Battle Back Britain. He supports the Australian food and restaurant industry each year at the Taste of Port Douglas and Noosa Food & Wine Festival.



Session Name:

Food and Events: Trends and Tips



Are food stations out and gin bars in? This panel discussion will uncover the latest trends in event catering and offer practical advice for event planners on topics such as:
• Getting a sponsor for champagne towers and other luxuries when the budget won’t cut it.
• Cost-effective ways to maximise the venue’s menu experience – ie shared dessert platters instead of alternate serve, canapes instead of starters.
• Catering to cultural and dietary requirements.


Key Takeaways


Target Audience

AIME 2024 Speakers

Knowledge Program and Ideas Academy Speakers Announced

Mark Cooper


Katy Aldrich

General Manager, Australia and New Zealand, SongDivision

Julz Partington

Creative Director, Encore Event Technologies APAC

Lisa Kelliher

Head of People & Culture, Be Challenged

Ron Anderson

Creative Experience Officer, Unicorn Group and REALM Australia

Kate Atkinson

Regional Vice President, Sales and Marketing, Pacific and Indonesia, Hyatt Hotels Corporation

Sarah Morse

Director, Unchained Solutions

George Hawwa

Founder and Growth Director, Attention Experts

Rebecca Grace

General Manager, Centre for Inclusive Design

Lisa Ronson

Chief Marketing Officer, Coles Group

Thomas Staunton

CEO, SoldOut Events

Kai Hattendorf

CEO, UFI - The Global Association of the Exhibition Industry

Stephen Koukoulas

Managing Director, Market Economics Pty Ltd

Simon Cooper

Managing Director, Interpoint Events

Virginia Loyola

Senior Manager, Global Sales, Arinex Group

Nicole Tingey

Director, Clockwise Consulting

Bruce Keebaugh

Co-Founder, The Big Group

Seb Terry

Inspirational Keynote Speaker, Sebastian Terry

El Kwang

Founder + Chief Engager, BEAMexperience

Diane Demetre

Motivational Leadership & Mindset Speaker, Diane Demetre

Peter Haycroft

Head Chef, Melbourne Convention and Exhibition Centre

Katerina Grant

Director, Kat&Co

Mike Williams

Senior Partner & Senior Consultant, GainingEdge

Samantha Ferrier

Sustainability Manager, Melbourne Convention and Exhibition Centre (MCEC)

Tanya Wick

Senior Leader, Totem Connections

Melissa Brown

Chief Executive Officer, Australian Business Events Association

Chris Sheldon

Managing Director, Curtis Stone Events

Deanna Varga

CEO & Founder, Mayvin Global

Megan Van Den Berg

Co Owner, https://kinyalerrk.com.au/

Alana Bicknell

Director of Sales and Planning, New Zealand International Convention Center

Daniel 'Fuzz' Walker

Managing Director (Asia Pacific), Afterburner

Michelle Sargent

Director, CWT Meetings & Events

Melissa Murphy

Head of Conference Operations, Arinex

Veemal Gungadin

CEO, Gevme

Charlotte Juniper

Winner of ICCA AP Youth Challenge 2023, Adelaide Convention Center

Henri Turra

Managing Director, Radish Events

Bernard Stephens

General Manager, Harry the Hirer

Natalie Simmons

Founder & CEO, Barefoot Citizens Consulting

Fernando Barraza

Creative Director, Cirkus Bizurkus

Jill Midlovets

Kitchen Coordinator, OzHarvest

Lucy Meixner

Adelaide Convention Center, Winner of ICCA AP Youth Challenge 2023

Lauren Hayward

Owner and Managing Director, Forum Group Events and Marketing

Lisa Meehan

Head of Delivery, Diversified Communications

John Burgess

Director of Strategy, Little Rocket

Nadav Kahn

Lead Wellbeing Facilitator, Vibrate Your Mind

Vanessa Green

CEO, Cliftons

Waikin Wong

Regional Director, ICCA Asia Pacific

Emma Bamblett

Artist and Co-owner, Kinya Lerrk


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