A guide to meeting and conference planning in 2019 for bookers from our Group Corporate & MICE Sales Manager, Kylie Basnett.
If you are planning a conference or event in 2020, or whether you are the primary booker for meeting room venues in your organisation, there are some interesting trends coming down the line in 2019 that you will want to be aware of.
- SUSTAINABILITY AT THE CORE
Sustainability is a key factor for companies in 2020 with conference bookers opting for more sustainable promotional goodies such as recycled tote bags or reusable. Companies want to work with suppliers who share the same green agenda. All three of our properties are part of the Green Hospitality Programme. We are dedicated to supporting the industry in continually minimising their impact on the environment so that you can do business, without worrying about your footprint.
- CHANGING DIETARY REQUIREMENTS
More delegates are requesting gluten-free and vegan products. Choosing alternative meetings spaces does pose challenges when it comes to catering for a variety of palettes. For this reason, more companies choose to return to hotel settings, where there is greater flexibility in catering for diverse diets as our Head Chefs are experienced in all preferences and allergies. We can also offer more flexibility in terms of space, allowing for buffet, sit down, food station and a la carte options as well as creative refreshment breaks.
- BREXIT FEAR
The dreaded B-word is having an impact on us all and more of us are opting to err on the side of caution when we don’t know what the future holds. Very often, this means working with limited budgets. Whatever your budget, our team can work with you to provide you with business solutions, including corporate room rates, off-peak meeting room rates, affordable residential conference packages and tailored banqueting/conferencing packages.
- TECHNOLOGY TRENDS
From twitter walls to international conferencing, better technology is ensuring more efficient meetings and events. Internationally, companies use apps and wearables to improve networking and delegate experiences. In our hotels, we have invested in Clickshare, a wireless presentation system that provides seamless, hassle-free content sharing for meetings and events. We can also provide you with your own secure WIFI network if you choose you host your large conference at the Cork International Hotel.
- WELLBEING MOVES UP ON THE AGENDA
Most events now encompass at least one element which contributes to enhancing a delegate’s wellbeing. Whether it’s a short 5km walk or run in between sessions (you’ll find mapped routes at receptions in all our airport hotels) or the inclusion of a creative activity during the day, our team have plenty ideas to help incorporate mindfulness into your event. We also work with expert provider Teambuild.ie to provide you with team building activities for larger events, or residential conferencing.
- FLEXIBILITY A KEY FOCUS
Events now incorporate more brainstorming and group activities. A hotel environment offers huge flexibility when planning breakout sessions, or providing flexi-working delegates with a space to hotspot between workshops. Our spaces are multifunctional, so you can move effortlessly from networking to conference to workshop to dining in as many or as few rooms as you like. We also offer alternative spaces for team building and occasions such as our Prosecco Lounge in The Metropole Hotel Cork, our Cinema Room in Cork International Hotel and The Snug at The MET.
If you are planning a conference or event in 2020, make your event stand out with a little magic from our team. Kylie Basnett, our Group Corporate & MICE Sales Manager would be delighted help you choose the perfect venue to wow your delegates or impress your board. She can also provide you with corporate room rates for your colleagues for the year ahead.
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