The Gleneagle Hotel Group has unveiled its new ‘Killarney Convention Centre’ (KCC) brand and believes it will help attract over €80m to the Munster region by 2014.
The KCC brand, incorporating The Gleneagle Hotel, The Brehon Hotel and INEC Killarney, is part of the group’s plans to target national and international conference and meetings markets.
The move follows Tourism Ireland’s recent appointment of 181 Conference Ambassadors charged with bringing in business events worth an estimated €232m to the economy.
The average international association conference delegate visiting Ireland spends an average of between €1,300 and €1,500 per person, more than twice that of a leisure tourist, according to the tourism agency.
“We believe that growing business tourism to Ireland is key to the future of employment in the Kerry region, as well as the wider economy,” Gleneagle Hotel Group MD Patrick O’Donoghue told the Irish website Businessandleadership.com following the launch of KCC.
“Our team has developed a plan to showcase Killarney to international audiences as an ideal location for large corporate events,” he added.
KCC expects 330,000 visitors to attend 220 conventions, business and entertainment events at its venue this year.
The Gleneagle Hotel Group is the largest employer in Munster in the tourism and hospitality sector, employing up to 450 people during peak season.
Business tourism inquiries for Dublin, meanwhile, are up 20 per cent this year, mostly as a result of the opening of the new convention centre, according to new figures from the Business Tourism Unit of Dublin Tourism.
The unit says the Dublin Convention Bureau is on course to generate €50m worth of bookings this year and meet its targets. The Convention Centre Dublin (CCD) has had a “massive effect” on the perception of Dublin as a business tourism destination, according to spokeswoman Aine Kavanagh.
The Government has set a target of generating €1bn worth of business tourism by 2013.
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