Approaching a major two-decade milestone next year, Montekristo Estates under Polidano Group is continuing to thrive. Since its opening in 2005, the venue has carved out a distinctive niche in the Maltese landscape. Born from the mind of Charles Polidano, the venture emerged as a pivotal part of the Polidano Group’s expansion into leisure and hospitality.

The endeavour was ambitious from the start and over the years has continued to blossom into a multifaceted events and venue destination, which also offers an array of recreational, cultural, and entertainment experiences, catering to families and businesses alike.

John Micallef, General Manager at Monktekristo Estates, explains that from the beginning the estate prided itself on being a ground-breaking concept in Malta, one which still stands out today. The buildings and venue were thoughtfully designed for Malta with architectural nods to traditional local buildings—a fact that the group attributes to Mr Polidano’s deep affection and admiration for Malta, where he succeeded in creating an estate that preserves Malta’s cultural essence while offering modern amenities.

Over the years, Polidano Group has steadily expanded Montekristo Estates, unveiling new areas to the public. Today, the estate boasts six distinct venue spaces, each offering its own charm and style ideal for all kinds of events, from large-scale fairs and corporate gatherings to weddings, private parties, and beyond. Among its venue spaces Il-Palazz remains the focal point of the entire estate—a grand setting inspired by Malta’s Baroque palazzos, ideal for various occasions.

Complementing the venue spaces are various F&B establishments, including the welcoming Rare Pub & Grill, which offers a diverse menu of top-quality grills, burgers, pastas, and more combined with an extensive selection of drinks, including a curated wine list, craft beers, and cocktails. John points out that the restaurant has become especially popular with families and colleagues looking to enjoy great food in a casual space, which also screens live sports.

The estate is also home to a brewery, winery, and artisanal farmstead. Collectively, they craft an assortment of products, from craft beers and table wines to water, artisanal olive oil, honey, and traditional Maltese cheese, ġbejniet. John emphasises the estate’s dedication to excellence, especially evident in their beer production. In recent years, they’ve honed their brewing techniques, entering the craft beer market with a solid selection of six ales and seasonal brews. Using top-tier hops and wheat sourced from across the globe, they’ve improved their offerings to meet the discerning tastes of today’s beer drinkers, John explains.

Despite Montekristo Estates’ widespread recognition in Malta as a venue space, their products have remained somewhat under the radar. As such, the group has been making efforts to raise awareness and showcase the meticulous craftsmanship behind their wares. These endeavours have yielded promising results: their beers have been gaining traction, garnering increasing interest and recognition and holding their own against competitors both locally and internationally.

Currently, the Group is undergoing an exercise to consolidate its branding, ensuring consistency across all its products and services. Leveraging their established reputation, they are aiming to fortify their presence in the market. In a strategic move, they’ve introduced MK Direct, a B2B foodservice distribution brand, facilitating direct access to Montekristo products for clients. Looking ahead, plans are also underway to broaden accessibility for everyday consumers with the launch of a conveniently located retail outlet, which is set to further enhance the brand’s reach in the market.

And in a nod to modern trends, Montekristo Estates also features Rulina Fun Park and a dedicated Esports centre, aligning with the changing interests of their visitors. Recently inaugurated in July 2021, the World Pro Racing, Development, and Entertainment Centre comprises 17 video game simulators and broadcasting facilities. It serves as a hub for fun and nurturing Esports talent through educational programs, reflecting the Group’s commitment to providing quality experiences, offering visitors a multitude of reasons to explore the estate.

A popular tradition synonymous with Montekristo Estates is the annual Il-Fiera il-Kbira trade fair, eagerly anticipated by thousands of locals each year. For the upcoming edition, running from June 25th to July 7th, the Group is revamping the experience to deliver enhanced value for both visitors and exhibitors. Notably, this year marks the first time the event will be managed in-house, promising a more personalised and inviting atmosphere with a balanced mix of product and services showcases, together with engaging activities, catering options, and live entertainment, including screenings of Euro 2024 matches.

Taking on visitor and client feedback from previous years, this year the fair is aiming for a more spacious and relaxed atmosphere, with designated zones for entertainment, eclectic food choices, and the opportunity to watch football matches. Making a concerted effort to avoid overcrowding and excessive noise, John points out that the Group is working towards creating an environment where exhibitors stay within their designated spaces, so that visitors can roam the trade fair feely, visit the exhibitors of interest to them, and ultimately enjoy the entire experience together with their friends and families.

Montekristo is also providing exhibitors with enticing deals and promotional support. They’re extending the fair by two extra days, completely free of charge. Plus, there’s a variety of affordable tent options available which are suitable for all sizes and types of businesses, all being kept at low cost by Polidano Group. Exhibitors will also benefit from comprehensive marketing packages bundled into the price. From social media posts to personalised interview videos, they’ll have all the tools to showcase their offerings and attract visitors to the fair.

With a promise that this year’s fair is going to be the best one yet, Montekristo Estates is encouraging businesses to register their interest online by visiting its website. Interested parties must simply fill out a form and a member of the team will get back to them to tailor a package around their needs and sort out all the logistics on their behalf.

“There’s a lot in store for Montekristo Estates in the next year. We can’t wait to unveil our fresh branding across our product range soon. By mid-summer, keep an eye out for our new beer offerings, including keg supplies and bottled craft beers, which we are confident beer enthusiasts are going to love. Additionally, we’re working to strengthen our MK Direct service, ensuring that our top-quality products are more readily available to both clients and consumers, as we look to gain a stronger foothold in the market,” John concludes.

This interview forms part of the Companies to Watch in 2024, a business serialisation of, Malta’s fastest-growing, cutting-edge business news portal, aimed at companies achieving their goals, marking important milestones, or planning to announce major business news.

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