The Best of Kunming Awards Ceremony 2015-2016 was a rousing success, with around 300 people attending for a night of fun, music and of course, recognition of the best venues, businesses and destinations the Spring City has to offer.
An event of this size required the work of dozens of individuals and organizations, and all hinged on GoKunming's fantastic user-base input and feedback. To everyone involved, we extend our heartfelt thanks. Below is a snapshot of what went on during the awards show, as well as a look at those who made it all possible.
Any ceremony, no matter the magnitude, requires a venue. This year, as with last, the Best of Kunming Awards Ceremony was held at the ACMEC Media Exhibition Center atop Jinding Mountain. The area, like much of Kunming, is undergoing a rigorous transformation.
In this instance, the change is in the form of an upscale technology and industrial park growing out of a disused collection of old factories. The high-tech facility provided the perfect space in which to recognize those involved in Kunming's fast-evolving business landscape.
Just as an awards show needs a setting, it also demands winners. These were provided by GoKunming users and WeChat followers, who turned out in droves to cast votes for their favorite Spring City enterprises.
Our special thanks to everyone who took the time to fill out and submit a ballot, including those who won our first-ever voter prizes. The voting and awards are community events, and without user input, neither would be possible.
As with our two previous awards ceremonies, music was an important component. The 2015-2016 awards featured joint performances by Kunming solo artist Hu Weijia (胡维佳) — also known as Vega — and Sandauni (彡道逆), a collection of musicians playing what is best described as Afro-Asian gypsy-jazz fusion. DJ Xiao Kris provided the perfect mix of music for the beginning and end of the show, while in the background, Alex Kalmar expertly orchestrated the sound mixing.
Their performances were fantastic, and kept the crowd entertained between the more formal awards presentations overseen by GoKunming co-owners Adrian Golobic and Yereth Jansen.
Handing out commemorative plaques and trophies was the focus of the evening, and this year we gave out awards in 20 categories, as chosen on both the website and through WeChat. For a list of the winners, see our complete list for 2015-2016.
In an added bit of fun, we held a lucky draw for all of the attendees. The giveaway featured hotel and resort stays in places such as Dali, Shangri-la and Shaxi, while also featuring luxury spa and gym vouchers, tickets to performances of Dynamic Yunnan, and many others.
We would like to thank all of our sponsors, which included ACMEC, Anthura Flowers, Banyan Tree Ringha, Blessing Gifts, Dali Bar, Green Supermarket, La Bharive Spa, Mucun Lakeside Resort and Hotel, Old Theatre Inn, The One Resort, Shangri-la Beer, S-MAX Digital Technology Co, Yang Liping, Yigao Fitness Center and Yutao Yoga Studio.
Special thanks also to some behind the scenes heroes who helped make the evening run as smoothly as we could ever have hoped. Our gratitude goes out to Vera and Sisi for designing everything, Sun for keeping everyone on schedule, Joan and Karina for their invaluable translation work and Licia and Liuliu for running everywhere around Kunming.
Kris Ariel showed everyone how to get to the event, Xiao Hui saved us with an extra helping of ice for the drinks, DT Bar kept the beer cold and Philippe Semanaz ran for extra cups as their numbers dwindled.
In addition, Andreas made sure we had engraved trophies and a red carpet, while nine highly motivated students from Yunnan Normal and Yunnan Finance and Economics universities welcomed guests, showed them to their seats and generally lent a hand everywhere one was needed.
Again, thanks to everyone who voted in the awards, everyone who attended the event, all of the winners, our volunteers, everyone on the exhausted GoKunming team, and especially those who use and make the website a better, more informative and fun resource for all things South of the Clouds.