Melbourne’s Grand Hyatt hotel has recently undergone a recent $10m refurbishment of the hotel’s banquet facilities included an extensive renovation of both of the hotel’s ballrooms, Savoy and Mayfair.
All of the hotel’s smaller function rooms were also completely refurbished.
The new banquet facilities are modern, spacious and technically advanced. The Mayfair Ballroom has been transformed into a modern, stylish function space, while the Savoy Ballroom boasts a new and improved stage.
Premier Technology, as the previous in house audiovisual contractor and supplier to the hotel, was asked to advise on the technical refurbishments as well as to tender for some of the work that needed to be done.
As a result, Premier Technology supplied and installed the entertainment lighting for both ballrooms as well as the audio systems. They also met the audio requirements of the function rooms on level eight of the hotel.
The Savoy Ballroom is fitted with a JBL VerTec system with eight VT4887 plus four VT4881 subs a side and Pat can’t stop raving about the set up.
” The VerTec system has proved to be fantastic,” said Pat Kearney, Purchasing Coordinator for Premier Technology.
“It’s the perfect solution for that room. The compact size and lightweight of the VerTec boxes makes them ideal for this venue. Plus, no other box projects as well and is so true to its specification. We’ve had other PA’s in that room during the past two years but nothing has touched the VerTec.”
“It delivers better coverage, a nicer sound, more headroom, more volume before feedback and everyone who has been in the room has been very impressed by it. A lot of clients have commented on the quality of the PA and the fact that its compact size doesn’t impact too much on the look of the room.”
The PA is driven by two Crown I-Tech 8000 and four I-Tech 4000 amplifiers, chosen for their reputation as an advanced power amplifier.
“The other day I was working on another job where I had to find an amplifier that was the equivalent of an I-Tech but there isn’t one!” said Pat.
“Nothing compares to the I-Tech’s power and smart limiting. They really are a very impressive amplifier. Crown has packed more sophisticated features, protection, performance and value into I-Tech than has ever been assembled into one amplifier.”
A Soundcraft MH3-32 channel mixing desk, a truly modular console that can quickly be reconfigured to suit your needs, was chosen for FOH control. Pat particularly likes the flexibility offered by the MH3.
“The Soundcraft MH3 can be used front-of-house or for monitors which provides venues with the advantage of complete console flexibility,” he said. “All it takes is the touch of a button to place either Groups or Aux Masters onto faders, delivering uncompromised operation in either application.”
A front of house effects rack consisting of BSS EQ gates and compressors, a Lexicon PCM81 and two Lexicon MPX200s was installed to the satisfaction of all who have used it so far. Added to that was a Stanton CD player.
“It often means we’re supplying more than what’s on the band’s rider,” Pat said. “So everyone is very happy with it.”
There are times when both the Savoy and the Mayfair ballrooms are simultaneously hosting live bands and so a large selection of Shure microphones was selected to cater for this eventuality.
These include KSM 32 and 137 condensers, and Beta 98 drum mics. A large quantity of the Beta range was also purchased including Beta 56, 57, 58 and 87s.
Thirty-six Shure MX412/C microflex gooseneck microphones cater for the conferencing requirements of the room.
A Jands Vista console controls both the house lighting, which is DMX controllable, and the entertainment lighting.
“The Vista gives us enough DMX outputs to control every single house light,” said Pat. “It‘s also the latest and greatest in console technology so it shouldn’t need replacing for quite some time. Everyone, from the opening onwards, has been very impressed by the Vista and it has certainly made their job easier. It’s perfect for venues with a large amount of DMX.”
A dozen ETC Source Four (15º-30º) profile zooms have been installed into the Savoy Ballroom with a further dozen Source Four Jr. zoom (25º -50º) profiles into the Mayfair Ballroom.
“We couldn’t be any happier with them,” said pat. “We’ve since had a few different, comparable fixtures in the rig, which clients have bought in, and the Source 4’s are much better – easier to rig and get operational. The lens movement is fantastic. You’re not trying to deal with handles that slide and cause friction. The rotating zoom is easier and safer to use.”
The Mayfair Ballroom houses a JBL VRX PA system consisting of eight VRX932 and four SRX718 cabinets. “The JBL VRX cabinets were ideal for that room as they have a compact size yet are still high impact,” stated Pat.
“It’s a punchy system and much better than the previous PA that was in that room. They’ve proved to be a popular box and everyone has been very impressed by their sound. Of course I’m using Crown I-Tech amplifiers to drive them.”
Audio control is delivered by a Soundcraft GB4 16 channel console, which Pat describes as versatile.
“It has suited us well because we can also use it in the Savoy Ballroom in conjunction with the MH3 console,” he said. “The compatibility with the MH3 has worked out well and it’s proved to be a very useful console.”
The Mayfair has a small band rack comprising of dbx compressors, gates and EQ units.
“That way the room is fairly stand alone and they can have a band in there or just straight up tables and lecterns,” explained Pat.
BSS Omnidrive was used for FOH system control in both Mayfair and Savoy, allowing the engineers to have flexibility in system balance and sound.
Level 8 function rooms
Every function space on Level 8 of the hotel was also fitted with flexible and discrete in-ceiling system, controlled by BSS Soundweb. The large and complex task of the Soundweb programming took four weeks to design and then build.
It involves one 9000ii Hub, three 9088ii processors, one 9008ii output expander, six 9010 jellyfish controllers, and a PC user interface, that can be remotely shadowed by Premier Service and support staff.
”The Soundwebs primary purpose in the Hyatt is as a matrix system allowing them to patch into one point and then, by using Soundweb, allocating it to a point on another side of the building if required,” Pat explained.
“It means that the technicians don’t have to physically re-patch different rooms around the venue. It gives them considerable flexibility as well as better signal integrity.”
The Soundweb design also allows the In-house engineer to store pre-set room EQ, and really maximize the extensive in-ceiling system.
The distributed ceiling system throughout the function rooms on level 8 utilises twenty-four JBL Control 25AV, fifty-eight Control 26CT, thirty-eight Control 24CT and eight Control 19CT ceiling speakers. A selection of Crown CTS amplifiers drives the ceiling speakers.