Editor’s Note: ZEN Otaku Honbu’s resident photographer kyflo attended the Amore a Venezia cosplay event held last February 16 at The Venice Piazza in McKinley Hills, Taguig. Here is his account of what happened—or perhaps, did not happen—during the event.
Amore a Venezia is the post-Valentine’s Day cosplay event that was held at the Venice Piazza at McKinley Hill, Taguig City. This was the first anime event to be held there. There was a meet and greet with international cosplayers like Viospace & StarPolaris Reiko from Singapore, and Zeasonal & Yolkler from Thailand.
I had no idea what the event would be like at first; I simply gave in to my curiosity when I bought the ticket at an early bird rate of ₱300 during the Ozine Christmas Figure Special event last December. I thought that it would be like Fantasy Quest since it promoted itself as a “post-Valentine’s day” event. Also, judging from its luxurious-sounding Italian name and its location at The Venice Piazza, I expected that it will be a formal event.
I was unfamiliar with the directions and the transport systems at Bonifacio Global City, but luckily I was able to arrive to the venue at 3:30pm. As I entered the venue, it was so quiet that I can’t even feel the presence of cosplayers or con-goers. There were no signs to show the event’s location nor any marshalls assigned to assist the cosplayers and con goers to the event.
I had my “WTF?” moment when I saw that the event was still on its ingress. I then assumed that the event will start at 4pm since one-hour delays are usual with these kinds of events. While I was waiting, I started to take pictures of the ingress, the cosplayers and the building of Venice Piazza.
The event finally started at 6:11pm—over three hours after its scheduled start. I expected the event to be special and memorable since I have paid a good ₱300 for this and there were international cosplayers. Some planned activities like the marriage booth, evening ball and photo booth didn’t push through, or so did the blogs I’ve read say. There were also delays with the chocolate fountain setup. The only activities that proceeded as planned were live performances, singing contest, meet and greet with interactions, and the sword fight. The event turned out to be a promotion for several cosplay accessories and products.
I didn’t have the chance to meet the international cosplayers due to long lines which made me lose my patience with the outcome of the event. I didn’t understand its flow. Cosplayers and event goers were just roaming around. Some are having their own business, some are watching the stage performances, and some are lining up to meet the international guests. Due to my disappointment, I decided to leave the venue at 8:30pm.
It was such a shame that Amore a Venezia turned out this way. The organizers of this event have exerted a lot of effort to make this event memorable. They had spent months selling tickets at various anime events, organizing ticket meetups at several locations in the Metro, and actively promoting the event through social media.
In their statement, the organizers have apologized about unfavorable outcome of the event. They said that misunderstandings between them and Megaworld, the original floor plan for the event was not followed, causing some of the activities for the event to be cancelled. For instance, the supplier for the photo booth did not show up at the event. They also explained that the event started 3 hours late because of “lack of cooperation and tardiness of the staff.”
The organizers admit that they are not sure whether they will set up another anime event, but they are still asking for support from con-goers in case they will organize another event in the future.
If ever they will organize another event, I suggest that there should be people who will guide the event goers or just by placing out signs near the venue. There should be a full description written on the ticket and color coded tags for Media, VIP, and Regular ticket holders. But overall, I would say that the ₱300 that I paid for this event was not worth it for it did not meet, let alone exceed, my expectations.
DISCLAIMER: The opinions expressed by the writer does not necessarily reflect the views of ZEN Otaku Honbu writers & the editorial team.
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