EUROPE – The Estrel Berlin, Europe’s largest hotel, convention and entertainment centre, has nearly doubled its function capability, with the debut of Convention Hall II and 10,000sqm of new event space.
Spanning three levels, Convention Hall II features a central 4,600sqm cantilevered hall with capacity for 5,200 people, a 1,050sqm event space with capacity for 900 people, a 700sqm foyer, four conference rooms for up to 100 people and three lounges.
The Estrel Congress & Messe Center’s €30m investment has resulted in a facility that now offers total event space of over 25,000sqm, equipped to accommodate up to 12,000 visitors.
“We’re especially excited that we were able to unveil the expanded facility on schedule. We play an integral role in Berlin’s conference and convention landscape, welcoming upwards of 360,000 guests and hosting over 1,800 events a year,” said Ekkehard Streletzki, owner of the Estrel. “The expansion allows us to bolster our position and encourage new international organisations to hold their events in Germany’s capital city.”
The inaugural event earlier this month saw over 2,000 visitors attend a convention by an international electrical wholesaler.
In the coming months the Estrel will host events for up to 3,000 visitors, including the televised José Carreras Gala in December. By the end of this year, 27,390 visitors are expected to pass through the new Convention Hall II and events resulting in a total of 29,500 future visitors are already confirmed for 2016.
Streletzki also said the new Convention Hall II would enable Estrel Berlin boost its revenues above last year’s €59.5m figure.
The expansion will also increase the hotel’s current occupancy rate of around 65%, Strelezki noted.
“In the future, if either of the Convention Halls is undergoing renovations, we’ll be able to compensate by continuing to host events in the other hall. Other Berlin hotels will profit from the expansion as well in that more guests in need of overnight accommodation will be coming to Berlin,” said Streletzki.
The expansion at Estrel has also meant the Messe has been able to take on 50 new permanent staff.
The construction of Convention Hall II entailed the use of 6,400 cubic metres of concrete and 1,295 tonnes of steel.
The foyer’s eye-catching centrepiece ‘The Sum of All Possibilities’ is an installation by London design collective Troika. Made of grey-lacquered wood, it rotates in a circular orbit around its own axis. The sculpture – which is suspended from the ceiling – is meant to symbolise a state of perpetual metamorphosis.