Four new conferences are coming to Dublin, and are set to bring close to €5m in revenue to the capital.
Tourism board Fáilte Ireland has announced that the World Institute of Pain, the European Cities Marketing TIO Expert Meeting, the Junior Chambers International European Presidents Meeting and the World Congress of Psycho Oncology have all been secured for Dublin.
Minister for transport, tourism and sport Paschal Donohoe welcomed the news. “I am delighted with the news that Dublin continues to attract high profile lucrative conferences to these shores. Business tourism is a very valuable part of our overall tourism product and performs well year-on-year. The fact that those who come here on business more often than not choose to stay on for pleasure makes it even more important”.
The tourism authority laid out its plans for the year ahead at an annual briefing in the Conference Centre Dublin last week and announced that business amounting to more than €138m had been confirmed thus far this year.
Miriam Kennedy, head of business tourism with Fáilte Ireland, said: “Last year was a record year for the area of business tourism but our aim is for 2016 to be even more ambitious with growth of 12% targeted. Business tourism is a highly competitive game with a valuable return but we, in Fáilte Ireland, are fully committed to ensuring we secure a large piece of the pie”.
CBRE Hotels Dublin on behalf of clients, the P. J. Walls Holdings Group, has confirmed that unconditional contracts of sale have now been exchanged for the four-star Hilton Dublin Airport Hotel to Irish investors including Emerald Investment Partners (EIP) and Windward Managementheaded up by Patrick Coyle.
The hotel is the flagship property in Northern Cross, a mixed use development that includes high end offices, retail and residential apartments. The hotel has several function rooms and a selection of boardroom suites and meeting rooms.
Dermot Curtin, director of CBRE Hotels said: “The successful, off market sale confirms that there is a very strong and continuing demand for profitable, modern and well located hotels in Dublin. It also confirms the city’s status as an important European hotel market and as a location much sought after by astute investors.
“PwC’s latest European Cities Forecast predicts that Dublin will see the highest ADR growth of any major European city for both 2016 & 2017, the second highest occupancy in 2016 and will be the strongest European market for RevPar growth in 2017. With a record 8.6m visitors to Ireland last year – up 13.7% on 2014, most of whom arrive through Dublin Airport – a strengthening economy boosting corporate demand and little new supply, the future is bright for the Dublin Hotel sector”.
Meanwhile, Belfast Waterfront marked 60 days until the opening of its new conference centre by showcasing the venue’s new spaces and facilities to buyers attending International Confex at Olympia London last week.
The venue has already secured 30 international and national events with big names such as BBC Good Food Show, the World Council of Credit Unions and the Royal College of Nursing signed up for its five star experience.
After an investment of £29.5m funded by Belfast City Council, the European Regional Development Fund, through the EU Sustainable Competitiveness Programme for Northern Ireland and Tourism Northern Ireland, a 7,000sqm purpose built venue now stands in the heart of the city.
The new Belfast Waterfront will house over 30 event spaces, which will be able to accommodate up to 5,000 delegates at any one time.