Travel Tips – Florence Italy

During 2013 & 2014 Ruth spent 4 months travelling around the beautiful country of Italy. It is without a doubt her favourite place to visit, with everything from food, wine, art history and more. The first rule of thumb for anyone when they arrive in a new city is to WALK. Spend a day or two walking around the city centre & visiting gardens & galleries.


View from our Airbnb overlooking the Arno & Ponte Vecchio

Must see:

– Ponte Vecchio
– Basilica di Santa Maria Novella
– The Duomo
– Best view in Florence from Giardino Bardini
– Uffizi Gallery (birth of Venus is absolutely breathtaking)
– Hire a car/join a tour & drive through Chianti wine region
Chianti – plenty of wineries to see, make sure you visit:
Casa Sola for some really delicious wine & just down the road is San Donato, a little village that has the best pizzeria in Italy, Palazzo PretorioMake sure you order one of the Italian beers on the menu to go with your pizza.

Venue Spotlight – Anchorage Port Stephens

Make your next event memorable by selecting an experience where luxury meets the sea. By the pristine white sands of arguably the world’s most beautiful port, give your delegates an event they’ll cherish for years to come at Anchorage. Located half an hour from Newcastle airport or 2.5 hrs from Sydney, your guests can enjoy the finest cuisine in the region, breezy terraces and event spaces, and once-in-a-lifetime local experiences.

Conference Capacity: 160
Number of Accommodation Rooms: 80
Features: 2 Pools, Various Areas for team building activities, Private Marina

“I wanted to say a huge THANK YOU  to you for the fabulous 2 day conference you pulled together for my team here at McDonald’s. I am still receiving great feedback on the event.

I know many of my request were “out of the ordinary” as far as conferences go but you truly excelled & delivered.

Your attention to detail & execution on everything was amazing from organising the external suppliers (photo booth, Christmas decorations, Pinnacle Events) to liaising with our cocktail team – Sweet & Chilli, ensuring the catering was perfect (big thanks to Chef Michael too) even right down to the personal room drops I needed early on day one – you truly are an asset to The Anchorage.

Another person who deserves thanks is Anya – she was amazing and her hard work didn’t go unnoticed.

I look forward to talking with you again soon for the team to come back in 2018 – I hope you will be there to work with us again.”

  • McDonald’s Australia, 2017


“I would like to extend my thanks to you both and the resort team as our group thoroughly enjoyed the stay, the service and accommodation. It is such a beautiful resort and a lovely place to have our leadership workshop.

The bottle of bubbles, cheese platters and card from Ali the GM in the room just added that final touch to a wonderful stay. The food was sensational, Day Spa exquisite and the conference room service was fabulous with Anya helping us on the day.

We enjoyed it so much so that the team who hadn’t stayed at the resort will be visiting soon with their families and we will look to make the workshop an annual event and hopefully stay an extra night the next time”.

  • NEC Australia, 2017


Contact Mitchell or Kristie at the Anchorage to discuss your next conference:
Email: Mitchell or Kristie
Phone: 02 4984 2555

Take 5 With Pinnacle – Will

If you’ve ever wondered what makes a Pinnacle Team Events facilitator tick then you have come to the right place! Each month we will be taking 5 minutes to chat with each of our facilitators about their lives both inside and outside of work.

Will Mason – Pinnacle Team Events Director

What I love about being a Pinnacle Facilitator:
Meeting new people and working in a different environment every day.

My favourite Pinnacle team event to facilitate:
Easy – Tikes on Bikes. Being there to witness a group donate bikes to underprivileged kids and help a company make such a big impact on some deserving kids is really heart-warming.

Most embarrassing moment as a Pinnacle facilitator:
I can’t deal Blackjack….. my maths is too slow!

My favourite hobbies are:
Mountain Biking, Kayaking and adventure races.

What I’m listening to at the moment:
Podcast –  Casefile: True Crime

What was the last book you read?:
On the Trail of Genghis Khan

Favourite holiday?:
I’m easily pleased – as long as my wife and two girls are there I’m happy!

Have you ever had a nickname?:
Several – Bilby, Bill, Wonder Boy, Maso, Willo

I am frightened by _____ :
Scary movies….. I just can’t do horror films!

Favourite movie of all time:
Life is Beautiful

First concert I went to:
Hmmmm …. Perhaps Homebake Festival

If you could live anywhere, where would it be?:
I do love skiing and mountain biking so a pad in the French Alps would be pretty sweet.

What makes you angry:
Voice to text answering services

What makes you laugh the most:
My kids

What song would you sing at karaoke night?:
Ice Ice Baby

Food & Wine Picks for October

Although the German’s kick off Oktoberfest celebrations in September, you will find that the Australian version tends to land more towards the end of October. Steins of beer, pork knuckle & giant pretzels – what’s not to love! Continue reading for the when & where to celebrate Oktoberfest in NSW:


Oktoberfest In The Gardens

When: 28 October 2017, 1pm-9pm

Where: The Domain, Sydney CBD

The hugely popular Oktoberfest In The Gardens comes to Sydney every year. When it arrives, it brings with it all the best German beers, ciders and wines, as well as food stalls, performers, entertainment and competitions across various stages from afternoon to night. With a complimentary drink and commemorative event stein, there’s no better place to celebrate Oktoberfest. Get in quick as Oktoberfest In The Gardens is usually a sell-out event.

For more information and tickets: Oktoberfest in the Gardens


Munich Brauhaus

When: 16 September – 28 October 2017

Where: Munich Brauhaus, Cnr Playfair & Argyle St, The Rocks

In true Munich Brauhaus style, a slew of competitions and activities also come with the celebration including pork knuckle championships and a dogs of Oktoberfest competition. For the dedicated, you’ll also have the chance to become an Oktober-Boss. To achieve this accolade, you’ll have to take up four hard-to-resist challenges which includes eating a pretzel, drinking four 1 litres steins, eating a schnitzel and chowing down on a pork knuckle. You have six weeks to complete this and when you do, you’ll receive bragging rights, a commemorative T-shirt, limited edition stein and invite to the closing party.

For more information: Munich Brauhaus


Blue Mountains:

The Carrington

When: 28 October 2016

Where: The Carrington, 15-47 Katoomba St, Katoomba, Blue Mountains

For one day and one day only, the historic grounds of The Carrington in the Blue Mountains is transformed into a family-friendly Munich-inspired festival. As a bonus, the local Katoomba Brewing Company’s specially brewed Oktoberfest Lager will be available. As will a jumping castle for the kiddies.

For more information: The Carrington



Friday, 20 October, 2017 at 5pm – 11pm
Saturday, 21 October, 2017 at 10am – 11pm
Sunday, 22 October, 2017 at 10am – 6pm

Where: The German Club, 636A Northcliffe Dr, Kembla Grange, NSW 2526, Australia

The Wollongong Oktoberfest is an annual event run by volunteers to promote German Culture throughout the Illawarra. This will be the 28th Oktoberfest and is the largest Regional Oktoberfest in Australia. 3 days of fun filled entertainment of music, arts and dance. Experience a taste of European culture with a great selection of European food and beverages.

For more information: Ticketbo

Thanks to for the hot tips

Where are you coming from? Communication within the Team.

After almost 15 years of working with teams I am still so fascinated with communication within teams and the impact that it has. For me personally, some of the key factors that contribute to the effectiveness of communication within a team are intent, ego and self-awareness.

parentadultchildWhere are you coming from? Do you really want peace in this situation or are you just after an argument? This is so often the case and potentially, some people are parked in this place permanently. This can be due to generational legacy, conditioning and state of mind. The ability to recognise and then shift your intent is a very powerful tool. If you want war that’s what you will be faced with. Shift your intent to peace and harmony and that’s what you will encounter. Be careful what you project.

The shape, tone and make up of our communication can also have many origins and therefore many varying effects. Ego is a factor for all of us. Within teams the ability to keep your ego in check and being aware of it can be a key factor in communicating within the team. Transactional Analysis is a great theory to read up on. Please click here with thanks to Business Balls. This theory of Eric Berne may help to explain the type, tone and impact of communication within your team. How do you communicate with others and what impact do you have upon them?

Self-awareness – oh I wish it could be purchased at a hardware store. That statement in itself is self-righteous. We all believe we are right and potentially also aware. Self-Awareness is having a clear perception of your personality, your strengths, weaknesses, thoughts, beliefs, motivation, and emotions. It allows you to understand other people, how they perceive you, your attitude and your responses to them in the moment. But you can’t get it at the shops. For me, the most amazing teams are able to be very truthful and open with their communication to each other around impact. People are made aware of the impact they are having upon others in a helpful and supportive manner. If this doesn’t take place in a trusting environment there will be defensiveness and frustration. All of this meaning there is truth in it for the person involved.

So keep on track and persevere with the practice of being a good communicator and a good team player.

6 Team Building Activities To Celebrate The 2016 Rio Olympics

181377331aa2df703d6f4f78ea803bf5The 2016 Summer Olympic Games are now upon us! Officially known as the Games of the XXXI Olympiad and more commonly known as Rio 2016, the Olympics sees thousands of athletes from around the globe participate and compete in a variety of sporting competitions. These competitions range from swimming and athletics to equestrian dressage and synchronised swimming. The Olympic motto is made up of three Latin words: Citius – Altius – Fortius. These words mean Faster – Higher – Stronger. If your office is abuzz with Olympic fever, why not get involved in some friendly competition with one of our Olympic themed events! In a ceremony at the conclusion of the activity the winning team will be presented with Olympic style gold medal medallions.

Mini Olympics

Volleyball, Elimination Footy, Archery… are you a master sportsman finding it hard to choose your specialised Olympic event? Then the Mini Olympics is for you!

The Mini Olympics is a fun activity that provokes competitiveness and plenty of laughter, yet doesn’t intimidate participants who may be lacking in sporting or physical prowess.

The event involves teams rotating around various sports such as Volleyball, Frisbee, Catapult Firing, T-Ball, Team Tennis, Dodge Ball, Kick Tennis, Sand Scrabble and many more. The options are endless and only dependent on the venue and the size of the group.

We can run our Mini Olympics in a large grassed area or on the beach.

Olympic themed Amazing Race

Teams will be issued with a list of cryptic clues to various locations across the local area. Awaiting the groups at each location are Olympic themed team based activities known as “roadblocks” where teams earn points towards their overall score. Teams will also be collecting scavenger items and taking team photos along the way to earn precious bonus points. All teams converge at the finale location at the same time for a final all-in team challenge before prizes are awarded to the victors!


Our team of Archery Sharp Shooters won us our first Olympic medal at this year’s games. Why not get your team on target with this ancient form of medieval weaponry! In this engaging activity a structured lesson involving technique and safety are outlined and enforced. The delegates are then divided into teams that compete aiming to outscore their opponents. All delegates will have plenty of firing time and be kept entertained as teams are involved in various competitions and games that all involve shooting arrows at the target. The event can finish with a sharpest individual shooter if you like.

Australia's Mack Horton bites his gold medal on the podium of the Men's 400m Freestyle Final during the swimming event at the Rio 2016 Olympic Games at the Olympic Aquatics Stadium in Rio de Janeiro on August 6, 2016. / AFP / Odd ANDERSEN (Photo credit should read ODD ANDERSEN/AFP/Getty Images)

Laser Clay Pigeon Shooting

Be like Australian shooter Catherine Skinner and win a gold medal for your team!

This dynamic and interactive activity uses authentic 12 gauge shotguns that have been converted to fire laser beams. Clays with Omni-directional tape are fired from the launcher – when the shooter scores a hit the beam is reflected back to the gun and registers a hit on the electronic scoreboard.

Wine Olympics

Now this is our kind of Olympic event!

Rather than running, jumping and swimming your way to victory, teams will tackle a very different series of events. Grape stomping, wine spitting, cork popping, waiter relay and an array of winery related activities will guarantee a good time.


Olympic Themed Trivia Night

Know your Olympic history? This isn’t your average pub trivia. Pinnacle is ingenious at tailoring this interactive trivia challenge to any group. It will prove to be unlike any other trivia night you have ever attended. The games we play throughout the night are hysterical and we can guarantee that your delegates will be laughing from start to finish.

Between each round of questions the tables volunteer delegates to participate in crazy challenge activities (which makes the evening very interactive). Music trivia, movie, and TV sound tracks are on the menu as well as IQ/Brainteasers.

Contact us today to chat about your team building requirements!

PH: 02 4962 5034
E: mailto:[email protected]

PinnacleTeamEvents_RGB Horizontal


8 reasons escape rooms are great for team building

Escape sessions create laughter, fun and a highly unique experience that will be remembered around the office for a long time to come while giving companies the opportunity to practice and analyse their skills in communication, organization, critical thinking, logic and creative genius in a high pressure apocalyptic zombie survival scenario ….kind of like your office right? At the end of your session, we can facilitate a debrief session where our staff will analyse your moves, decisions, how you communicated and what you could have done to escape or possibly the reasons why you managed to escape quicker than other groups.

Information concept: pixelated Opened Padlock icon on digital background, 3d render

To succeed teams must:

COMMUNICATE – You won’t escape unless you share information. It isn’t simply good enough to just yell out something you found. That won’t yield the key! There is so much going on in the room that you must make sure that your idea is being heard and followed.

LEAD – Teams that do not escape do not have enough leaders in their group to suggest concepts, decide on path’s to follow or stir the group toward an outcome. It will take more than one strong leader to put everything together as there are multiple tasks that need to be completed simultaneously.

FOLLOW – Too many leaders in a group and no decisions will be made.

THINK OUTSIDE THE BOX – Your creative genius and speed by which you unleash it will be crucial to your team Escaping!

LISTEN – Everyone on your team is equal and could very easily hold the creative genius inside of them that is required to find the key.

WORK TOGETHER – Individualism is awesome! But it is a one way ticket to the belly of a zombie at this show.

ADMIT YOUR MISTAKES – There are multiple solutions for various puzzles in the room. If you are dead set on a solution simply because someone who you believed was “smart” gave you the answer, yet the answer doesn’t lead you further to finding more clues… then the “smart” person was wrong.

BELIEVE YOUR GROUP CAN ESCAPE! – With the time dwindling on the clock and a serious of what appear to be dead end clues, it will seem as if your fate is sealed. Those that do escape, have to practice positive thinking and never give up no matter how much time is left. The majority of groups that escape do so with seconds on the clock in a movie like scenario that yields ample amounts of adrenaline!

Call us today to participate in one of the most adrenaline packed team building sessions you’ll ever experience!

As a launch offer we are offering a 10% discount of Escape bookings in July, August and September.

Not visiting the Hunter Valley for your next conference? No worries!

Known as one of Australia’s best wineiStock_000006170852-Grape-to-Glass regions, the Hunter Valley is perfectly located two hours from Sydney and, thanks to the Hunter Expressway, only 45 minutes from Newcastle.

Not visiting the Hunter Valley for your next conference? No worries!

We can bring the Hunter Valley to you with our Grape to Glass activity.

Our Grape to Glass activity begins with our Hunter Valley winemaker taking your group through a lesson on the art of wine blending. Once groups have spent some time smelling, swirling, spitting and tasting – the competition begins! To come out on top as the winners of this activity, teams must work together to produce the best blend of wine along with a winning label and sales pitch.

MOTG_155.jpg_edTo get a glimpse of how this activity is usually run, head to our YouTube channel to view our informative clip click here

With winter already knocking on our door it’s no surprise that we’ve seen an increase in Grape to Glass bookings, a great activity for escaping the winter chill.

“Everyone involved had so much fun and became very competitive to win! Awesome way to unwind after a long day conference. Thank you so much to all involved, especially the gent whom came out, he was brilliant!”

–          Calibre Group, February 2016

“As always, an absolute pleasure to deal with the Pinnacle team. The event was a success and everyone had a fantastic time. A great suggestion and definitely something I would suggest to other divisions and businesses.”

–          OneSteel Reinforcing, March 2016

“The activities were excellent and the staff were really great! Our corporate team had a wonderful time with the wine blending and the clay shooting. We will definitely be keeping in mind this events company in the future for our other events. Thanks Pinnacle!”

–          Stayz, May 2016

So which winery is this mysterious Hunter Valley wine connoisseur from? Pinnacle have teamed up with the wonderfully talented winemakers at Tulloch Wines to bring you this fun, unique and tasty team building activity. Located in the heart of Hunter Valley wine country, Pokolbin, Tulloch wines has spent the past 120 years crafting premium wines for all generations of wine drinkers. These days, Tulloch is run under the guidance of the 3rd generation, Jay Tulloch and 4th generation Christina Tulloch. With Tulloch’s award winning wines and having arguably one of the most beautiful cellar doors in the Hunter Valley, it is definitely worth a stop on your next tour of the vineyards.

Judgement at Work

Judgement of another person can be very harmful and destructive within teams. Judgement can be fixed and remain so for a very long period of time. Often we are aware of it and its potential impacts yet we refuse to shift. Shifting this judgement involves giving the person another chance to establish themselves with you and potentially change your judgement of them. If the behaviours continue, this is when the challenge may increase.

Also be careful with Judgement that it isn’t in fact a reflection of yourself. Often the aspects and behaviours that annoy us within another person may in fact be behaviours that we exhibit ourselves. This involves pausing before we act and respond and reflect about our own behaviours.

So pause, reflect and then act. Question your Judgement and its potential to be destructive for your relationship with that person. Look at yourself first.

Judgement within teams often erodes Trust. We all need to work on this and be mindful of its impacts upon ourselves, others and ultimately the TEAM. Be kind and help to build the rapport and trust within your team.


Trying Times – TEAMS SUCCEED

The end of financial year, winter blues, political and economy uncertainty has seen us all experience a trying month or two. Pinnacle Team Events are busy helping companies navigate their way through these tough times. Personnel are the driving force of most organisations who need to be motivated, inspired and energised to perform – even more so in tough times. Our winter special has proven to be very popular with companies arranging events from within their office or local area to remind their team of their importance to the bigger picture.

If you think that your team needs to reboot and find itself having fun again give us a call!