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entourage was the organisation and build-up arm of Zayed Heritage Festival in 2014/2015
Hosted under the patronage of UAE President His Highness Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan, and the directives of His Highness Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces, and the supervision of H.H. Sheikh Mansour bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Presidential Affairs, the annual event Zayed Heritage Festival is the biggest exhibition of tradition and culture in the UAE
In its inaugural year, entourage was mandated to help build the project from ground-up – an area in excess of 10,000 sqm. The scope was to bring the masterplan of the festival ground to life. 96 houses for exhibition purposes, more than two dozen utility zones, sponsors pavilions, kiosks, common pathways included, the project management scale and scope was among the biggest in the UAE events industry.
Building 96 houses in an open plot was not a usual project – it required dedicated team, staffing to ensure delivery of each phase is on time, careful supervision of quality requirements and application of high-quality building material to meet the climatic conditions. The agency worked round the clock with multiple teams on the ground to ensure that the project timelines and quality requirements are not compromised.
In its second year, entourage partnered with the National Archives of UAE to activate major pavilions. Each of these were dedicated to the life and stories of glory of heroes of the UAE, Ahmed bin Majid the celebrated sailor, Zayed the Great and Sheikh Zayed, and a zone to showcase UAE national icons.
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The agency’s dedicated team of planners and designers researched historical facts and stories and presented an experience like no other – visitors were able to move around in a seamless journey from present to past while discovering little known facts about the lives of national heroes. Immersive technology, interactive screens, hologram and other innovations were leveraged to create a stunning experience. For example, the character of Ahmed bin Majid was created in hologram and was used to narrate the story of his life to the visitors, it meant visitors could actually interact with a hero who lived hundreds of years ago.
Each of the pavilions were divided into welcoming zones, stories from the early life, technological tools to touch and feel elements from the past, milestones of the life of the hero, milestones that have impacted the journey of the nation, f&b zone and merchandise section. The holistic design ensured these experiential zones became very popular over the years, today Zayed Heritage Festival is a major international exhibition of celebrating world cultures.
An essential part of the deliverable was HSE and safety planning, and the agency was able to handover a project which met the exacting standards of the organisers.
From entourage, a combined team of more than 100 personnel worked on these projects. The specialists included communication experts, design teams, production and project management teams as well as technology experts who worked on creating outstanding visitor experiences. The project required pro-active collaboration with core teams from National Archives and Zayed Heritage Festival organising team.