For our first incentive Highland Games event of the 2019 season, we had a great turn out all round.
We had the perfect Highland Games field. Well drained and flat, with picturesque views of the Firth of Forth on the approach, and the impressive, historic Hopetoun House to provide a stunning Scottish backdrop to the games.
We had perfect Scottish weather; for a February morning, it turned out crisp with some mist. By the time the games commenced, the sun was out and it was a blistering 13 degrees!
Our clients were Italian incentive winners in the swimming pool business, here for a 3 day Scottish incentive experience.
The guests were transferred from their Edinburgh city centre hotel after breakfast, arriving at Hopetoun around 9.30 am, to a bagpipe welcome. They were greeted by Donald from Hopetoun, who gave them a potted history of the Estate before the Highland Games briefing started.
The guests were split into clans to compete over the different events. They were piped on to the field, and the Highland Games commenced.
The clans of 10 had 25 minutes to learn and master each Scottish activity, with points being awarded for marksmanship, dancing ability, fun factor and accuracy.
The activities chosen for this incentive experience were:
Whilst the Highland Games activities were running, the sound of laughter carried through the air, punctuated with gun fire and the hearty smell of competition.
After the teams had competed around the activity field, they were piped in for their buffet lunch in the plush stables at Hopetoun.
Caterers to the Queen, Heritage Portfolio, presented a hot and cold fork buffet fit for the laird.
The menu was:
- Artisan beef and vegetable stew
- Vegetable lasagne
- Pearl barley, feta, roast aubergine, roast butternut squash and spinach salad
- Beetroot, orange, black quinoa and chilli salad
As guests enjoyed their lunch in the Stables, the activity hosts totted up the scores. Prizes were presented to the Chieftains Champion before the guests headed back on the coach to Edinburgh for an afternoon of sightseeing around Edinburgh Castle, the Edinburgh Old Town and shopping in the New Town boutiques.
The group were out for dinner in a city centre venue, Ghillie dhu and practised the ceilidh dancing they had learnt during the day. We had three highland dancers there to lead the action after they had enjoyed a Scottish banquet.
Donald at Hopetoun House
Alistair at Heritage
Viviana at Interopa, London agent
Walter, Bruce and Colin the heavy athletes.
Jonny the piper
Lisa the dancer
Pat the shot
Stu and eccles the shooters
Roddy the host