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May 1, 2012

New format proves a success for hotel events conference

Great Hotels Meeting Forums, the intensive trade shows bringing together meetings and incentives buyers and suppliers from around the world, is pleased to announce a brand new – and successful – format. 

Operated by Worldwide Events, the first Great Hotels European Meeting Forums took place between 27 and 31 March 2012 at Boscolo Prague, welcoming two hosted buyer groups over two-day periods. The best of Prague was showcased during dinners and activities, including a gala dinner at the Lobkowice Palace in the Prague Castle. The event was sponsored by Boscolo Prague, AIM Group International, Prague Convention Bureau, Czech Airlines, Ambassador Group and Lobkowicz Events Management.

Previous Meeting Forums targeted one or two countries in a single destination, such as the France and Italy Meeting Forums, which took place in Greece in September 2011. For 2012, Great Hotels Meeting Forums are targeted to buyers from the whole of Europe, resulting in a much higher calibre of buyers. In addition, this format results in more relevant appointments due to buyers being able to choose which properties they want to meet with.  

Carla Tarrida, Director of Account Management at Great Hotels of the World explained: “Changing the nature of the Forum from a single-country-focused event to a European-focused event has given us the opportunity to cherry-pick the best buyers in the MICE industry, increasing the value of each meeting for our hoteliers. There has also been an increased number of RFPs for each hotel, reflecting the added value in the change of format for hotels.”

Over the four-day period, an impressive 1,300 meetings took place between 26 exhibitors and 76 buyers from a variety of European countries. Spanish and Portuguese hotels were the largest groups among the 26 exhibitors. The largest groups of buyers came from the United Kingdom, France and Germany. Among those buyers present were representatives from American Express, Samsung, McKinsey & Company and Nike. Each supplier held 50 meetings in total.

Suppliers were asked to complete a questionnaire, giving their opinion on the quality of buyers present at the Forums. The average rate suppliers gave for the quality of buyers present was 5/6. From this data, the European Forums can be seen as extremely useful and successful.

Katerina Skouloudaki, Sales Executive at The Royal Olympic Hotel, said: ''The Great Hotels European Meeting Forum was organised excellently. The team were extremely professional, friendly and efficient.'' Claudia Ribeiro, Group Coordinator at Altis Hotels, says: ''This was my very first Forum and I am pleased to say that I have already gained great feedback from the hosted buyers present.''

Buyers were also highly satisfied with the event: ''The whole event was perfectly organised and the quality of exhibitors was very high. This is an ideal event to meet the suppliers you really want to meet,'' commented Eva Lehrke, owner of Text & Event. Terry Raynsford, Corporate Events Manager at BULL, added: ''Great Hotels European Forum was a very good, highly interesting and productive event. I would definitely recommend it to any event manager with little time on their hands.''

Following the success of the European Forums in Prague, the next Great Hotels European Forum will take place on 25-29 September 2012 at Grand Hotel Principe di Piemonte in Viareggio, Italy. This Forum will follow the new format, scheduled over a four-day period. The Forum will be attended by luxury MICE hotels from Europe and the most influential meetings, events and incentives planners from around the continent.

For more information, visit http://info.ghotw.com/forums/


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