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India Nightlife Convention and Awards concludes its third edition


New Delhi, September 17, 2018: The National Restaurant Association of India (NRAI) and Kickstart Entertainment in association with Budweiser Experiences and Johnnie Walker – The Journey executed the 3rd Edition of the India Nightlife Convention and Awards (INCA) on 15th and 16th September 2018 at Shangri-La’s Eros, Janpath, New Delhi. The convention not only showcased the ever evolving and dynamic nightlife culture by highlighting the industry’s accomplishments but also promoted a sense of brotherhood among the industry’s most influential hospitality entrepreneurs and specialists.

This year the two-day convention was encompassed of workshops & panel discussions followed by the Awards to felicitate the best in the Hospitality and nightlife industry.

Endorsing the nightlife culture in India, stalwarts of the hospitality industry such as Riyaaz Amlani, AD Singh, Rahul Singh, Chef Manu Chandra, Chef Vicky Ratnani, Chef Saransh Golia and other influential individuals came together to mingle, imbibe a sense of fraternity and showcase the best that the Indian bars and nightlife have to offer for this 2 day national business convention.

Celebrities like Shveta Salve, Faye D’Souza, Saransh Goila etc, marked their presence to support the convention.

Prolific personalities from around the world such as Mirik Milan​ (​Former Night Mayor of Amsterdam​), ​ Lutz Leichsenring​ ​​(​Club Commission of Berlin​)​, Hideyuki Yokoi aka Zeebra (​Night Ambassador of​ ​Shibuya City, Tokyo)​, Joaquim Boadas De Quintana ​ (​Secretary GeneralInternational Nightlife Association​) ​​​especially flew down to New Delhi to share their insights, divulge secrets and bring in a global perspective and help identify trends for making a vibrant and profitable nightlife and bar culture in the country.

Day 1 started with the ‘30under30’ workshop. It was a very informative and interesting roundtable workshop that brought together young stakeholders from India’s music, nightlife and hospitality scene to build a constructive and informative dialogue about the future on nightlife culture in the country. The workshop was hosted by Lutz Leichsenring (Club Commisioner, Berlin and Co-Founder of VibeLab). The topics discussed included Access to decision makers, Framework conditions, Awareness, Education, Community building, protecting creative space and Operating a cultural public or private venue. The workshop tuned out to be extremely results-driven and collaborative in nature. A lot of fresh ideas and perspectives were shared and INCA is now looking forward to streamline the thoughts and find ways to put them into action. Some interesting individuals who were a part of the workshop are Karyna Bajaj (Executive Editor, KA Hospitality), Arjun Shah (Founder & CEO, Shark & Ink), Varun Patra(Co-Founder, Homegrown), Divya Dureja (Personal Development Mentor and Curator) and more such ingenious personalities.

Industry leaders like Ashish Tulsian (Co-founder, POSist), Amin Ali (Special Correspondent, The Times of India) and DJ Mocity (Promoter and Co-founder, Boxout.fm), were moderators for panel discussions on topics such as ‘Scaling Bars’, ‘Evolution of Day Life and ‘Are You Serving The Right Music’.

A comprehensive set of City Awards were awarded at the end of the Day 1.

The second day on the convention was led by moderators like Rahul Singh (President, NRAI), Chef Saransh Goila, Faye D’Souza (Executive Editor, MIRROR NOW)  and Deepali Gupta (Co-Founder, Slate Consulting/Author – Times Nightlife Guide). The last panel of the day was led by Sourish Bhattacharya (Independent Journalist) along with thought leaders like Riyaaz Amlani (CEO & MD, Impresario Hospitality Pvt Ltd), A.D Singh (Managing Director, Olive Bar & Kitchen Pvt Ltd), Priyank Sukhija (CEO & MD, First Fiddle F&B Pvt Ltd) and Kishore DF (Owner and Director – Another Drop Hospitality).

Important topics touched on in this last but dynamic panel were as follows:

Topics like ‘Bar Food Trends’, ‘When Life Gives You Lemon, Add Tequila’, ‘Changing Tides: The Rise of Cocktail Bars’, ’The Women of Nightlife’ and more were discussed followed by the most awaited ‘Awards Night’ where finalists were recognized at both the regional and national level after being judged by 130 jury members across India.

The list of National winners is below –

Best Lounge – KOKO Asian Gastropub, Mumbai

Best Night Club – Kitty Su, The Lalit, New Delhi

Best Bar in a Hotel – Rockpool, W Goa

Best Bar Chain – Social

Best Beer Café – Toit, Bangalore

Best Bar for Cocktails – KOKO Asian Gastropub, Mumbai

Best Resto-Bar – Olive Bar & Kitchen, Mumbai

Best Sports Bar – SMAAASH, Delhi NCR

Best Dive Bar – Café Mondegar, Mumbai

Best Open Air Bar – Marbela Beach Restaurant, Goa

Best Bar Food – Slink & Bardot, Mumbai

Best Venue for Live Performances – The Pianoman Jazz Club, New Delhi

Best Bar for Wines – The Wine Company, Gurgaon

Best Concept Bar – The Bar Stock Exchange, Mumbai

Best Café Bar – Perch Wine and Coffee Bar, Delhi NCR

Best Debut Bar – B Kitchen and Bar, Mumbai

Best Bar Interior – Arth, Mumbai

Best Stand-Up Act in a Bar – Atul Khatri, Mumbai

INCA Artist of The Year, Bollywood – Akhil Sachdeva, Delhi NCR

INCA Artist of The Year, Non- Bollywood – The Local Train, Delhi NCR

Best Bartender – Chong Sherpa, PCO, NCR

Best Mixologist – Jeet Rana, Arth, Mumbai

Best Pop-Up – Warpcore, Delhi

Best Promoter – Slick, National

Best Restaurant/Bar Manager – Rahul Raghav, The Bombay Canteen, Mumbai

Best Artist Manager – Shark & Ink, National

Best F&B Director – Ranveer Sabhani, Social, Bengaluru

Best Music Event/Festival – VH1 Supersonic, National

Best DJ of the year – Arjun Vagale, Delhi NCR

Best Bar of the year – Social    

The Second Day also saw another set of Special Awards being awarded to thought leaders in the industry.

INCA DJ of the Decade – DJ Akbar Sami

Contribution to the Music and Nightlife Industry – DJ Akhtar

Nightlife Champion Inclusivity – Keshav Suri

INCA Technology/App of the Year 2018 – Zomato

Speaking on the third edition of INCA concluding, Aman Anand, Director, Kickstart Entertainment, remarked “The aim behind INCA has been to build a coalition for the nightlife industry across India. The Convention wasn’t just disruptive in vision but also in endeavor and method to bring together the industry. We recognized the integral role that social media played in today’s largely digital world, and used it to identify our 30 Under 30.”

Rahul Singh, Founder -The Beer Café & President- NRAI said, “Through INCA, we wanted to reach out to the policymakers to address concerns to make a more progressive and compliant system that boosts entrepreneurial drive for enhancing the nightlife industry. India’s F&B industry has seen explosive growth in the last few years. Factors like a largely youthful demographic, increasing disposable income, higher exposure to international trends and changing consumer lifestyles have increased demand for a buoyant nightlife, and this growth shows no signs of abating anytime soon. Nightlife adds personality to communities; helps bring people together and have enormous social impact on the live ability index of a city.

“Nightlife is an integral part of the cultural landscape of our country, and the third edition has been a success in recognizing and celebrating thought leadership in hospitality and nightlife entertainment space,” said Riyaaz Amlani, CEO & MD, Impresario Entertainment & Hospitality Pvt. Ltd.

This year the presenting partners for INCA were Budweiser Experiences and Johnnie Walker – The Journey.

Speaking on the conclusion of the 3rd Edition of INCA, Ben Verhaert, President – India, AB InBev said, “It has been a delight to partner with INCA once again this year as we look back collectively to foster and shape the growing contribution of the nightlife industry in the country today. Budweiser has always been at the forefront of shaping the music culture in the country and engaging consumers through world-class experiences around celebration and nightlife. We look forward to recognize the best in the industry for their contribution and continue to support the ecosystem going forward”

Expressing his excitement, Abhishek Shahabadi, VP and Portfolio Head, Marketing, Premium & Luxury, Diageo India remarked, “It has been a pleasure to be associated with INCA that celebrates and recognizes one of the most spirited and fastest growing industries in India for the last three years. The platform has helped create cultural perception and elevate lifestyle catalogue of the city. Congratulations to all the winners and we hope these awards will continue to inspire people to engage with consumers through world-class experiences.”