Producing Event Partner

When the idea for Bar Awards first came about, we knew we couldn’t do it alone. Marketing, social media, and creating content are our strengths, but the events world is an intimidating beast.

You only get one chance to impress with an event, and since Bar Awards will be annual, we wanted to set the right foundations. That's why we reached out to we are neighbourgood.

Kristy Austin is the powerhouse behind the full-service creative events and experience agency, launching we are neighbourgood in 2019. For over 20 years, Kristy and her team have created and produced world-class experiences in unique locations throughout Australia and across the globe.

We are neighbourgood
Kristy Austin - we are neighbourgood
Introduced to the hospitality world early on through her parents' restaurants in Sydney and the Blue Mountains, Kristy learned the importance of creating impactful, authentic, and genuine experiences, not only for attendees but also for those involved.

Kristy’s extensive resume includes directing Taste Festivals in Australia and Asia, curating and programming for Margaret River Gourmet Escape, working with the NSW Government on revitalizing The Rocks Markets, and delivering culinary and cultural experiences for major organizations, brands, festivals, and events worldwide.

we are neighbourhood
Tsunami 1.26 by Janet Echelman - Art and about Sydney

Everything they produce is about connecting people and communities, delivering extraordinary and impactful experiences. They are unique in that they not only produce projects for clients but also create their own events, which Kristy says is a key part of what makes them special. Events like the natural wine party, Naturellement, and the neighborhood dining series, Good Gathering, are just a few examples, with more exciting events in the pipeline.

we are neighbourgood
Naturellement - we are neighbourgood

They have worked with renowned events, festivals, and international brands such as Atlassian, Google, Adelaide Fringe, Diageo, MINI, and Visit Victoria. They've also collaborated with top talents across culinary, music, art, design, and culture industries, including chefs Mark Best, Skye Gyngell, Marco Pierre White, David Thompson, and Josh Niland, musicians Angus & Julia Stone, Kasey Chambers, and Sneaky Sound System, actor Richard Roxburgh, and fashion designers Romance Was Born, to name a few.

we are neighbourgood
Taste of Sydney Collective - IMG

Events are notoriously stressful and dynamic. Curious about what keeps Kristy passionate about the industry, we caught up for a quick one-on-one.

You grew up in the hospitality world, what made you want to venture into the events industry? 

It felt like a natural jump. Both are about bringing people together, the art of connection and creating memorable experiences. Events are just hospitality dialed up. I love the diversity and the challenge of creating impactful experiences.

Events are a tough industry to have longevity in, what has kept you in the game and at the top of it?

Connection, staying curious, being present, and staying very organized (ha). Knowing there's always a tomorrow and remembering we're not saving lives helps keep things in perspective. And most importantly, collaborating and working with like minded people who inspire you and push you to new levels

They can also be quite stressful, as we’re learning, do you have processes or ways of dealing stressful situations? 

Breathe. It sounds basic, but it works. Taking a moment to center yourself is crucial. And bring in the pros (like us!). Just like I wouldn't fix my car, I trust experts in their fields to help. Stress comes with the job, but it keeps things interesting and dynamic. If you do what you love you can move through the challenging bits and dig deep. 

What is one piece of advice you would give someone who is looking to create a successful event and ensure it leaves a lasting memory? 

Focus on authenticity and connection. Make sure every detail contributes to creating an experience that feels genuine and memorable. Curating every moment no matter how small because it can sometimes be these moments that make the difference.

we are neighbourgood
Blade Runner: More HumanThan Human - Art & About Sydney x Golden Age Cinema, Daniel Boud

Is there an event you’ve managed that stands out as a highlight? 

Eep - that’s a tough one. There has been so many…the Diageo World Class Bar awards was pretty epic. The first time World Class had come to Australia, 50 bartenders flew in from all over the world to battle it out for the world title. It took 10 agencies and 3 time zones to pull it off. And I also was 36 weeks pregnant onsite for the event - was definitely one to remember!

Other than Bar Awards, what other projects have you got coming up?

We have several exciting projects in the pipeline! We have just been engaged by Channel Nine to deliver some killer events as part of Good Food Events (formerly Good Food Month). This includes an industry-led symposium across two states and we're also working with American Express to deliver a VIP experience for their Centurion clients. Additionally, we are proud to be re-engaged by Placemaking NSW (part of the NSW Government). A few years ago, we developed a strategy and vision for the revitalisation of The Rocks and The Rocks Markets, which was a huge and rewarding project. We are now supporting the next phase of this project. We also have our own events returning and some exciting new events in the planning phase.

And many more projects are in the pipeline – it’s a very exciting time! Stay tuned for more details!

Check us out (www.weareneighbourgood.com) and if you are looking to create an impact for your people to connect with an extraordinary tailored experience that leaves a lasting legacy please reach out!