‘CREATIVE’ MEETING SPACES DRIVING MICE SECTOR
GIBTM set to take the spotlight as momentum builds ahead of 8th Edition in March with hospitality brands investing time, money and design into developing unique meeting spaces to accommodate growing annual calendar of regional events and expanding busines
With business travel continuing to consistently outperform leisure in the UAE hospitality sector in recent years, according to an October 2013 report from Euromonitor International, the importance of the meeting product to hotels across the region is set to be discussed and showcased at the 2014 Gulf Incentives, Business, Travel and Meetings (GIBTM) exhibition, which returns to Abu Dhabi National Exhibition Centre (ADNEC) from 24-26 March 2014.
As the region’s leading platform for inbound and outbound MICE and Business Travel Industry, GIBTM will focus on the hottest topics driving the regions MICE sector development and analysing the latest trends and buyer behaviors.
“Meetings and incentives arrivals accounted for almost 50% of all business arrivals in 2012 and new and existing hotels across the country, and indeed the region, are now paying increased attention to their meetings product and packaged group rates in order to capture additional market share,” said Lois Hall, Exhibition Manager for GIBTM ‘Those exhibiting can expect to meet over 300 high profile regional and international buyers from leading corporate, association and governmental organisations, who have business to place within the region.’
International research firm Aranca’s MENA Tourism & Hospitality Report 2013 highlights the attractiveness of the region with its expanding calendar of high profile events, which is also encouraging significant investment into the MICE industry in general.
“As demand for meetings space in hotels continues to grow, venues are also becoming increasingly creative in terms of both actual meeting room configurations as well as the menu of services and packages offered to clients, especially those who are looking for truly unique locations,” said Hall.
In a recent statement, Rotana, which is one of the region’s leading business hotel groups, announced that it was expanding in to frontier markets such as Iraq, Syria and Afghanistan, as well as other regional markets such as Bahrain, Egypt, Lebanon, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, and the UAE, where Rotana is now present in all seven Emirates.
“In Dubai, JW Marriott Marquis is positioning itself as the first hotel in the region with the capacity to sleep, feed and entertain 1,000 delegates at the same time with 1,608 rooms, two ballrooms, 32 meeting rooms and a total of 55,488-square feet of meeting space,” added Hall.
The Park Hyatt Abu Dhabi meanwhile, is taking tailored meetings experiences to the next level with the launch of The Residence – the UAE’s first residential-style event facility for business and social gatherings. Also the Hyatt Capital Gate Abu Dhabi, one of the landmark hotels in the UAE, understands the importance of business gatherings, with its location next to ADNEC (the venue for GIBTM), it has four state-of-the-art ‘Salons’ as the hotel focuses primarily on upmarket corporate meetings.
“And it’s not just the product, many hotels and MICE operators are getting creative with their group packages as well, including tours, tickets for concerts or sporting events. In some cases two-centre meeting and incentives such as, wadi-bashing in Oman combined with a contrasting city break in Dubai, or Egypt’s unrivalled Pyramids and Red Sea resort combination,” explained Hall.
New initiatives for GIBTM 2014 include the Business Travel @GIBTM, a full day of networking for the business travel industry, with attendees invited to participate in the Corporate Travel Networking session sponsored by the Hyatt Capital Gate, Corporate Travel Conference Programme and GIBTM Knowledge Hub Seminars, as well as the GIBTM Official Networking Reception sponsored and hosted by Yas Island on Tuesday 25th March.
For more information, please log onto www.gibtm.com
Image courtesy of Shell Vacations Hospitality.
GIBTM forms part of Reed Travel Exhibition’s IBTM Global Events Portfolio along with AIME (www.aime.com.au), AIBTM (www.aibtm.com), CIBTM (www.cibtm.com), EIBTM (www.eibtm.com), IBTM India (www.ibtmevents.com/ibtmindia) and IBTM Africa (www.ibtmevents.com/ibtmafrica).
GIBTM is the annual global incentives, business travel and meetings exhibition held in Abu Dhabi, UAE. GIBTM is ABC audited every year to guarantee that the number of visitors promoted is completely accurate and are unique attendees only.
Reed Travel Exhibitions
Reed Travel Exhibitions (RTE) is the world’s leading provider of exhibitions in the travel and tourism industry, with a wide-ranging portfolio of 21 international events in 14 countries throughout the Americas, Europe, the Middle East, Asia Pacific and Africa. Its market-leading, business-to-business events cover all elements of travel and tourism, including leisure travel, luxury travel, meetings, events, incentives and business travel, as well as golf, ski and spa travel.
RTE is part of Reed Exhibitions. www.reedtravelexhibitions.com