Mariani, Menaldi & Associati hosted this year’s Autumn Conference held in Florence/Italy.
The host’s motto was “CONSULEGIS Conference – combining Art, food, wine and fashion…welcome to Florence!”Indeed, the participants’ expectations were more than fulfilled. A total of 90 delegates, 28 partners and 9 guests accepted the invitation to Florence.
As is tradition, this year’s Autumn Conference opened with an Early Arrivals Dinner. Beforehand, as part of the Early Arrivals Program, participants had the opportunity to take part in a guided tour around the Gucci factory and afterwards in the Gucci museum and neighboring restaurant allow the first impressions of this wonderful city to sink in while enjoying the beautiful weather.
Since several members had already travelled to Italy before the official program started, they were able to explore the city on Thursday afternoon during a guided city tour.
The first official part of the conference started on Thursday with the Welcome Reception in the Palazzo Medici Riccardi. Participants were officially greeted by guest of honor Ottaviano de`Medici di Toscana di Ottajano.
Marco Mariani had selected a unique location for the conference on Friday. The Autumn Conference 2012 was held in the imposing Palagio Porte Guelfa premises. In addition to announcing the Dr. Thomas Marx Award winners and the subsequent presentation of checks and certificates to the winner, Zak Golombeck from Linder Myers LLP, there was initially a short presentation by international firms of lawyers that had shown an interest in a membership. There was also a status report concerning membership termination and the latest status quo on various marketing issues.
After the group picture and coffee-break, the location of the next Spring Conference was presented by the two hosts, Dr. Boris Mariacher and Dr. Wolf Grill, using an emotional film about the Bavarian provincial capital.
The main subject – Amerigo Vespucci/Naming the Future – was on the agenda afterwards. During the talks, presentations and reports those present were treated to a detailed insight into the history. While enjoying best Italian pasta later in Harry’s Bar the participants had the opportunity to recharge their batteries for the Specialist Group Workshops scheduled for the afternoon. For the first time the subject of each workshop was communicated before the conference. After the workshops there was another ‘get together’ – the so-called ‘Aperitivo Italiano’ on the hotel roof terrace where participants and Heads of the Specialist Groups gathered to take the opportunity to present in a few words the results of the previous two hours to participants of the other workshops.
In the meantime the autumnal weather had its grip on Florence and, equipped with plenty of umbrellas, the participants braved the short march to the Orsanmichele where they enjoyed an incredible view of the city from this exquisitely impressive location. The rain dampened the atmosphere in no way at all. After dinner participants devoted themselves to yet another feast for the ears and thoroughly enjoyed a violin concert.
On Saturday morning’s agenda at 9 o’clock was the Business Generation and Regional Group Meeting. Despite the early start twice as many people as originally registered found their way to the meeting room in Hotel Baglioni. Following a short presentation the active part for the approximate 60 participants began. Small groups discussed various subjects before presenting the results to the entire group. As was rumored, the participants who did not attend had already registered for the Saturday Business Generation Meeting morning in Munich.
After the meeting, various tours were held and from the looks on the faces of the returning participants the tour to the Uffizi Gallery, the city sightseeing trip or following in the footsteps of Michelangelo were a complete success.
The crowning glory of the conference was staged in the Auditorium di Santo Stafano al Ponte. The impressive location was exactly the right environment for a successful conclusion. The conference ended as is tradition when the host from Florence, Marco Mariani, presented the Consulegis Flag to the two hosts of the forthcoming Spring Conference in Munich from 02–05 May, 2013.
The Orchestra da camera Fiorentina enchanted the participants with familiar melodies and the birthday boy, Joost Bruins, quickly eased into his new role as conductor. With music coursing through their veins and legs the Consulegis members went on to have plenty of fun as is tradition at a club in Florence. In a word: it was a great and successful evening!
We thank Marco Mariani of Mariani, Menaldi & Associati for hosting this wonderful and unique conference in Florence.