Hospitality, a serious playground

08 April 2024

hospitality is a serious playground
It’s a place for taste-masters and taste-makers, entrepreneurs and odd-balls. A driver for economic and urban development, but also a vibrant and creative industry, where many find their home and develop an unexpected career. This quarter, we ask what is hospitality, if not a serious playground?

Imagine what hospitality looks like to those outside: an industry dedicated to conviviality, brimming with talented people-people, where the daily (nightly) objective is to ensure everyone, and I mean everyone, is having a good time. To be honest, it’s not far off the mark.  
Yet what may not always be obvious to outsiders, is that making fun is a serious business. This quarterly theme explores, people in hospitality are as motivated, industrious, and ingenious as in any industry, if not more. And unlike most, we’re having fun while doing so.  
Sam Davies - Editor-in-Chief 
You know the proverb that goes ‘all work and no play makes Jack a dull boy?’ Forget the gender specifics, as far as I’m concerned, the sentiment is absolutely spot-on. Which is where our serious playground theme comes in. It’s about celebrating festivals, clubs and bars, the spaces we as adults gravitate towards. Places we want to be when we’re looking to shake off the sombre and slip into some fun, and about how we can keep said spaces fresh, inspiring and engaging. 

I’m thrilled to be collaborating with and learning from my fellow creative curators Mirik Milan and Lutz Leichsenring – what these two industry champions don’t know about nightlife and the people working in it, quite frankly, isn’t worth knowing. Me? I’ll be bringing insights, innovations and inspiration from bars and bartenders around the world, as well as looking at people outside the industry and what we can learn from them. 
Sandrae Lawrence – SIP Curator 

A serious playground? It’s a personal story for me. When I was 20 and didn’t know what to do with my life I saw the opportunity to start promoting parties. We started small, grass roots: 150-pax capacity, small events every month. First in a group, developing the concept of the night, booking the DJs, doing theatrical performances ourselves, building the decor, and hosting the party. But after a few nights my brother and I were doing it all ourselves. 
Playing around allowed me to find work in the creative industry, doing photoshoots, fashion shows and big music festivals, shaping not only my career, but my way of thinking. For 99% of creatives, performers and hospitality professionals, this grass roots stage is an essential part of any trajectory. As the many SIP stories this quarter will attest, it’s a time for daring to fall, but also grabbing opportunities when they arise.  
Mirik Milan – SIP Curator 

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