With just under five months until the beginning of the Rugby World Cup (RWC) 2019, the Organising Committee in Japan is working hard to get everything in order before players and fans start arriving—including some impressive hospitality facilities.
The six-week tournament will be held from September 20 to November 2 at 12 stadiums across the island nation, and with a total of 20 teams and 48 matches, there are plenty of opportunities for entertaining clients, colleagues and high-achieving staff.
The main venue is International Stadium Yokohama, located a 30-minute train ride south from central Tokyo. The traditional Webb Ellis corporate hospitality pavilion is under construction nearby, as are lounges and other facilities at the other 11 venues.
David MacCallum, commercial director Asia at STH Japan K.K., the official hospitality supplier, says: “As the third-largest sporting event in the world, Rugby World Cup 2019 is venturing into new territory with staging the tournament for the first time in Asia. This is an opportunity for hospitality customers to enjoy a truly unique experience in a country that is renowned for unparalleled hospitality and service.
“Hospitality is about strengthening relationships and RWC 2019 packages provide an opportunity for clients to spend 6-7 hours of quality face-to-face time in a relaxed environment. The level of service, dining and seat locations in the stadium all combine to make an unforgettable hospitality and customer experience.”
The Webb Ellis Pavilion offers both private suites and a shared restaurant for corporate entertaining. While the suites have sold out, there is still some inventory for Pavilion passes, which include Category A (best available) seats as well as a formal course meal for a table of 10 for 180,000 yen per person (US$1,610).
The new ‘Sports Package’ is aimed at true rugby fans and includes a Category C seat for the semi-finals and final, as well as pre-match hospitality with Japanese street food and entertainment in the RWC 2019 Supporters Experience Area. Prices range from 150,000 yen per person (US$1,340) to 225,000 yen (US$2,015) for the final. They can also be bought in bundles.
For the other 11 venues from Sapporo Dome in the north to Fukuoka in the south, there are three packages for each location—all including Category A seats.
The Diamond Dinner package includes a formal four-course dinner for a table of 10, a hospitality package for an evening before either the opening match, semi or the final match (or both combined) with tournament review with panel of guest speakers, and match on the following day from 200,000 yen per person (US$1,790).
“The Diamond Dinner is a unique package newly created for the Rugby World Cup with the hospitality taking place the evening before your match,” says MacCallum. “It allows for guests to join after work if Japanese on a Friday night to begin the excitement early or it fits with International clients who wish to provide solutions for evening events if they’re over for an extended stay.”
The Platinum package includes shared lounge hospitality within ticketed perimeter, informal food and beverages, and pre and post-match hospitality with guest speakers from 115,000 yen per person (US$1,030).
The Gold package includes a shared restaurant close to stadium, multi-course meal and pre-match hospitality with guest speakers from 140,000 yen per person (US$1,250).