This past Monday the International Newcomers Club of Madrid (INC) held its monthly event in the Westin Palace Hotel. This fantastic international organisation has recently celebrated its 30-year anniversary since it was founded by Susan Cordery in 1988, its’ president is Eleanor Pojer and the Vice president is Nehad Sharaf. The INC is an English speaking, non-religious and non-political organisation with more than 200 members from 50 different countries! In this dynamic organisation you can meet all types of businessmen and women, celebrities, ambassadors and diplomats amongst many others. The INC has members of a huge range of ages, from 25 to 85.
The idea of this organisation to help people to make new friends with its dynamic expat community, to learn about Spanish culture, to practice not only English but other languages too and to help newcomers find their feet. The club focuses on 3 main areas, the monthly meeting which I had the enormous pleasure of attending recently, coffee mornings arranged in the different areas of the city and a huge range of different activities. The INC is the perfect way to network with many businesses having started up thanks to the support of the organisation. If there are members who can´t make it to the meeting then there is live streaming so that they don´t miss out!
Monday´s meeting was an action-packed morning complete with the attendance of the famous influencer Mon Rovi and a delegation from the Argentian Embassy. It began with a welcome presentation from the INC´s vice president Nehad Sharaf, who is the sole organiser of these fun and eye-opening events. We also had the pleasure of hearing from Susan Cordery the founder of the organisation. Susan´s speech was followed by the director of Elite Spain the Spanish luxury federation, an entity registered under the Ministry of the interior, which includes national and international companies linked to the luxury and high end sector that operate in Spain. Elite Spain brings their clients (brands) to the INC events as part of their services to their clients. At this week’s event we were presented with an impressive selection of gourmet products from Pere Ventura Cava and Beher Iberian Cured hams.
We listened to a very interesting speech from Mireia Juve the wine tourism and corporate events manager in Pere Ventura Family wine estates and wife to Pere Ventura, who spoke with huge passion about their award winning cavas and wines which the family produces and sells to 54 countries worldwide since it was founded in 1992 in the province of Barcelona. Her speech was followed by a cava tasting with Mireia visiting each table to explain a little about each one. We tasted the gran vintage paraje, the gran reserve brut and a delicious vintage rose gran reserve brut.
To accompany the cava tasting we enjoyed a plate of the melt in your mouth Beher 100% Iberian Bellota ham and the Iberian bernardo selection. Bernardo Hernandez Hernandez spoke about these spectacular hams and their curing process explaining the importance also of serving the ham at a temperature of 23 degrees amongst other fascinating facts about the wonderful world of ‘Jamon’! Beher sells to 50 countries in 4 continents.
Next, we heard from Gladys Van Oosterum who has started up her own business The Feminine Tide a wonderful company whose mission is to help women to live with purpose and happiness, by analysing their daily habits, by questioning their thoughts and to change aspects and situations in their lives that have been disempowering them little by little. 60-year-old Gladys is an inspiration to us all that anytime in life is a perfect time to take the reins and start up your own company.
At each monthly meeting the INC invites its members to speak about their businesses, skills and talents to help them to promote their ventures. At the meetings members also have the chance to sell their products too.
The lights were then darkened the curtains drawn and the spotlight lit up for us to enjoy the beautiful voice of the world renown soprano Virginia Tola accompanied by the pianist Julio Alexis Muñoz. Virginia took us to various countries with her spectacular repertoire, perfectly apt for such an international event.
The morning finished with the monthly raffle, raffling off as always, some impressive prizes, many from businesses of the actual members of the INC, certainly worth purchasing a good few tickets!
If you are interested in becoming a member of the INC please visit International Newcomers Club of Madrid
Abi Lindsay Clark