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New Spectrum-Area Event Facility Puts on the Glitz

A longtime area special-events producer is pulling out all the stops for a meeting and events venue that’s being built in the Irvine Spectrum.

AV, a 25,000-square-foot facility at the intersection of Lake Forest Drive and Scientific Way near Verizon Wireless Amphitheater, is about a month away from opening.

The two-story building at 16500 Scientific Way is part of a business park that’s home to the headquarters of Vizio Inc. and others.

The glass-clad building, designed by the local office of Gensler and Associates, is expected to stand out from its corporate neighbors upon its completion.

Industrial Influences

Its features will include “modern interiors with industrial influences,” according to AV’s owners, with abundant windows, a grand staircase, mezzanine balcony, private meeting rooms, and 5,000 square feet of outdoor space.

The facility is designed for corporate meetings, weddings, galas, fashion shows, holiday parties, and other social, school and civic events.

It’s the first stand-alone events venue of its size and type to be built in Orange County, according to Kris Plourde, a local events producer with more than 20 years of experience who is overseeing the creation of the facility and is an investor in the building.

Plourde also runs N-Effect Productions, an Irvine-based events production company that’s produced corporate events for a number of local businesses, and has also overseen a variety of international shows and large school proms, in addition to TV and film work.

N-Effect is moving its operations to a portion of a similarly sized building that’s going up next-door to the event facility. The rest of the second building, at 16450 Scientific Way, is available for lease.

AV will be able to hold up to about 1,000 people, with capacity to seat 600 in its main showroom. Local users looking for that amount of space would typically seek out venues such as the Grove of Anaheim or a hotel ballroom, Plourde said.

$10 Million

The high-end features being put into the new facility should draw users looking for a glitzier and fully customizable setting, he said. The construction and special features will cost more than $10 million, Plourde added.

Notable expenses for the building include $1 million for lighting, audio and visual systems highlighted by a 30-foot, high-definition LED wall that’s being installed at a cost of about $250,000.

The cost of one-day events at AV will start at about $15,000 but can run higher depending on the user’s need, according to Plourde.

Other facilities in Orange County, including banquet facilities at some of the area’s high-end resorts, can cost users nearly $100,000 during their peak seasons.

Being able to offer clients a stand-alone venue and a full complement of in-house event design, production, and catering services, should save users time, in addition to money, officials said.

“Our clients can enjoy an amazing event without the footwork and expense of sourcing each element individually,” said Chris Monteros, AV’s director of operations.

Catering company 24 Carrots in Irvine has signed on to be the facility’s exclusive food and beverage provider.

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Mark Mueller
Mark Mueller
Mark is the Editor-in-Chief of the Orange County Business Journal, one of the premier regional business newspapers in the country. He’s the fifth person to hold the editor’s position in the paper’s long history. He oversees a staff of about 15 people. The OCBJ is considered a must-read for area business executives. The print edition of the paper is the primary source of local news for most of the Business Journal’s subscribers, which includes most of OC’s major corporate and community players. Mark’s been with the paper since 2005, and long served as the real estate reporter for the paper, breaking hundreds of commercial and residential real estate stories. He took on the editor’s position in 2018.
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