Innovative support programmes and services for event organisers, state-of-the-art hotels, a plethora of exceptional event venues, Brussels is ranked among the top MICE destinations. The 8.5 million overnight stays and 889 event applications processed by the Convention Bureau in 2018 confirm this upward trend. We take a look at a city with its finger on the pulse-
The strategic location of one of the 10 most influential cities in the world
Brussels is the world's leading city for international professional associations. A total of 2,250 have set up their headquarters in the European capital. As a decision-making centre, this hub reinforces its attractiveness through the many professional connections it enables. Brussels has recently entered the top 10 of the world' most influential cities (Indice Global Cities de A.T. Kearney 2018).
Support for MICE organisers and connecting you with the right people
With four support programmes and a range of services specifically dedicated to event organisers, the experts of the visit.brussels Convention Bureau processed 889 requests and applications for events hosting 50 to over 5,000 people in 2018. This represents a 57% increase compared to 2017. The tailor-made and free services provided by visit.brussels optimise and promote the events that take place in the city: logistical, financial, organisational, communications and marketing support... Very useful: organiser can then takes advantage of visit.brussels' many connections with experts specialised by centre of excellence (media and creativity, ICTs, life sciences, pharmaceuticals, sustainable development, cleantech, business services).
Nearby events are also being seduced by Brussels
For the 5th consecutive year, Brussels is Europe's leading destination for association congresses and the 2nd in the world (UIA Report 2018). In terms of international applications, Brussels is competing with Amsterdam, Madrid, Paris, Paris, Barcelona and London. While requests from organisations come from all over the world, an increasing number of organisers from the Benelux are turning to Brussels.
New events venues, new hotels: trendy industrial, urban and sustainable
The existing event hosting offer will be further expanded in 2019. The Hôtel de La Poste at Tour & Taxis will be opening 12 new meeting rooms. The very vintage Hubert Hotel has just opened in the heart of the city centre. Meeting spaces are being renovated in the Ravenstein Galleries. And speaking of the future, Tour & Taxis is renovating the Maritime Station with new event spaces from 2020 and a 100-room hotel. A little further on is the 5-star Astoria hotel which is preparing to reopen in 2021. later, two very large venues will complete the offer: the Kanal-Centre Pompidou - the largest cultural institution in Brussels - as well as the NEO conference centre and its hotel. In terms of activities for delegates, we note the reopening of Brussels Choco Story in 2019 and the Belgian Beer Palace, which will be located in the Brussels Stock Exchange.
A large number of hotels, with our without conference rooms
With more than 200 hotels, 20,000 rooms and a wide range of meeting rooms, the Brussels hotel sector plays a decisive role in the choice of destination. The Brussels Booking Desk (BBD, a non-profit organisation), supported by the Brussels Hotels Association (BHA), provides tailor-made solutions for room bookings, at no charge. With 8.5 million overnight stays in 2018, Brussels is meeting its objectives!
Why Brussels? The icing on the cake
As a hub of power and business, a central strategic location, the seat of international associations and a centre of excellence, Brussels offers its cosmopolitan character, its quality of life and its many green spaces. Brussels can be proud of its ranking in the top 10 pioneering cities in the world thanks to its responsible and sustainable policies and practices in the business tourism and events industry (Global Destination Sustainability Index, GDS, 2018).
The icing on top of the cake: Brussels' over 18,000 annual cultural and festive events. Brussels is a city that's constantly moving!